November 28, 2010
I actually slept in and got some much needed rest, listened to the laughter, complaining, sarcasm, laughter and silence that was poured into our midst. Even though the words listed above could be construed as offensive that was not the intent of anyone around me. The laughter was rich the complaints were from burdens of life, the sarcasm was because we know each others idiosyncrasies and the laughter which followed was because it was true. The silence was when we were comfortable within our family and basking in the community of others.
The moments that I am most thankful for were the multiple times we pulled each other in clasped hands, took pause of what we were able to experience and enjoy so that we could pour our heart, mind and voice out in unity for the family that was unable to be with us, for those fighting for our security and peace, for differences to no longer be a hindrance, for healing in lives and families. We thanked God for his provision, for the nourishment of our lives. We asked God to be with those less fortunate because we believe that He is the giver of our life.
I looked through old albums, we discussed some times, people and places from moments throughout our blessed life. There are many elements which have affected who we are as a family. Whether we ever visit those places or people again each is still visible and their voices still are heard. So I would like to take this moment to Give Thanks to anyone and everyone that has ever crossed our paths. Even if the crossing was more of a collision at an intersection "it's all good!" I wish you the best, because there is nothing that has ever happened to me or us that has not made us more faithful people. If we were the cause of any hurts I ask that you forgive; and that not for us but for I choose to believe that people do not intend to cause others pain and that we have all grown and matured ....and I thank God that he is not finished with any of us yet.
Today my friends, live your life knowing that today is the gift....not tomorrow or yesterday.
My love to all of you, in Christ,
November 23, 2010
November 19, 2010
Can you believe it is the end of the work week already? I can't! I am loading things for us to think about all weekend. It is about being lead by the spirit. Christ told us and set the example so that we would know what it Looks Like to be tempted and yet not sin. He told us in advance that choices are set before us life and death. He implores us to choose life. Below are 3 different segments on choices - One from the New and Old testament and then a devotional from Os Hillman.
I pray that this weekend we understand a bit more deeply which spirit we are being lead by. The Holy Spirit is here with us if we are saved, but do not be deceived evil is always crouching at our door to lead us away.
I pray a hedge of protection around our hearts, minds and strength and ask that we seek God above all else today, tomorrow and forever.
Matthew 4:1-11 (GWT)1Then the Spirit led Jesus into the desert to be tempted by the devil. 2Jesus did not eat anything for 40 days and 40 nights. At the end of that time, he was hungry. 3The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become loaves of bread.” 4Jesus answered, “Scripture says, ‘A person cannot live on bread alone but on every word that God speaks.’ ” 5Then the devil took him into the holy city and had him stand on the highest part of the temple. 6He said to Jesus, “If you are the Son of God, jump! Scripture says, ‘He will put his angels in charge of you. They will carry you in their hands so that you never hit your foot against a rock.’ ” 7Jesus said to him, “Again, Scripture says, ‘Never tempt the Lord your God.’ ” 8Once more the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms in the world and their glory. 9The devil said to him, “I will give you all this if you will bow down and worship me.” 10Jesus said to him, “Go away, Satan! Scripture says, ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve only him.’ ” 11Then the devil left him, and angels came to take care of him.
Are You a Romans 8:14 Christian?
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
Friday, November 19 2010
For if you live according to the sinful nature, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live, because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. - Romans 8:13-14
Joshua and Caleb are described in Scripture as men who had a different spirit. They were two of the 12 spies sent into the Promised Land to determine if it could be taken, as God had promised it to them. The other ten gave a bad report that instilled fear in the people, which ultimately caused a rebellion. This resulted in an entire generation dying in the desert. Joshua and Caleb were the only two who were led by the Spirit of God, versus the spirit of fear. They were the only ones to enter the Promised Land from their generation.
Are you a person led by the Spirit? The verse above tells us that those who are led by the Spirit are sons of God. "But because My servant Caleb has a different spirit and follows Me wholeheartedly, I will bring him into the land he went to, and his descendants will inherit it" (Num. 14:24). Caleb was a Romans 8:14 man! The Spirit led him. He was not led by fear.
Many of us have failed to enter into our own Promised Land because we have failed to be led by the Spirit rather than by fear. Fear prevents us from entering into what God has promised for each of us. God has reserved an inheritance for us that is exceedingly good. God described the Promised Land as a land of milk and honey. Our own Promised Land is the same. But you must be led by the Spirit to enter in. You cannot be led by fear, reason and analysis, or even skill. The Spirit must lead you.
Commit yourself to being a Romans 8:14 man or woman. Then you will enter into the land God has promised for you. By Os Hillman
Psalm 106 (GOD’S WORD Translation)
Give thanks to the Lord because he is good, because his mercy endures forever. 2Who can speak about all the mighty things the Lord has done? Who can announce all the things for which he is worthy of praise? 3Blessed are those who defend justice and do what is right at all times. 4Remember me, O Lord, when you show favor to your people. Come to help me with your salvation
5so that I may see the prosperity of your chosen ones, find joy in our people’s happiness, and brag with the people who belong to you. 6We have sinned, and so did our ancestors. We have done wrong. We are guilty. 7When our ancestors were in Egypt, they gave no thought to your miracles. They did not remember your numerous acts of mercy, so they rebelled at the sea, the Red Sea.
8He saved them because of his reputation so that he could make his mighty power known. 9He angrily commanded the Red Sea, and it dried up. He led them through deep water as though it were a desert. 10He rescued them from the power of the one who hated them. He rescued them from the enemy. 11Water covered their adversaries. Not one Egyptian survived.
12Then our ancestors believed what he said. hey sang his praise. 13They quickly forgot what he did. They did not wait for his advice. 14They had an unreasonable desire for food in the wilderness. In the desert they tested God. 15He gave them what they asked for. He also gave them a degenerative disease.
16In the camp certain men became envious of Moses. They also became envious of Aaron, the Lord’s holy one. 17The ground split open and swallowed Dathan. It buried Abiram’s followers.
18A fire broke out among their followers. Flames burned up wicked people. 19At Mount Horeb they made a statue of a calf.
They worshiped an idol made of metal. 20They traded their glorious God for the statue of a bull that eats grass.
21They forgot God, their savior, he one who did spectacular things in Egypt, 22miracles in the land of Ham, and terrifying things at the Red Sea. 23God said he was going to destroy them,
but Moses, his chosen one, stood in his way to prevent him from exterminating them. 24They refused to enter the pleasant land. They did not believe what he said. 25They complained in their tents. They did not obey the Lord. 26Raising his hand, he swore that he would kill them in the wilderness, 27kill their descendants among the nations, and scatter them throughout various lands. 28They joined in worshiping the god Baal while they were at Peor, and they ate what was sacrificed to the dead.
29They infuriated God by what they did, and a plague broke out among them. 30Then Phinehas stood between God and the people,
and the plague was stopped. 31Because of this, Phinehas was considered righteous forever, throughout every generation.
32They made God angry by the water at Meribah. Things turned out badly for Moses because of what they did, 33since they made him bitter so that he spoke recklessly. 34They did not destroy the people as the Lord had told them. 35Instead, they intermarried with other nations. They learned to do what other nations did,
36and they worshiped their idols, which became a trap for them.
37They sacrificed their sons and daughters to demons. 38They shed innocent blood, the blood of their own sons and daughters whom they sacrificed to the idols of Canaan. The land became polluted with blood. 39They became filthy because of what they did. They behaved like prostitutes. 40The Lord burned with anger against his own people. He was disgusted with those who belonged to him. 41He handed them over to other nations,
and those who hated them ruled them. 42Their enemies oppressed them and made them subject to their power. 43He rescued them many times, but they continued to plot rebellion against him and to sink deeper because of their sin. 44He saw that they were suffering when he heard their cry for help.
45He remembered his promise to them. In keeping with his rich mercy, he changed his plans. 46He let them find compassion
from all those who held them captive. 47Rescue us, O Lord our God, and gather us from the nations so that we may give thanks to your holy name and make your praise our glory. 48Thanks be to the Lord God of Israel from everlasting to everlasting. Let all the people say amen.
November 18, 2010
Blessings for the Losers
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
How do you feel when you win? How do you feel when you lose?
When Jesus said “Blessed are the poor in spirit,” do you think He came to bless the winners or the losers?
With what are the losers blessed? They are promised the Kingdom of God.
The Kingdom of God is a place where one can grow. Growth is God’s purpose for every life.
No one can win all the time, especially when we emerge into the world as a new born baby. We have no strength, no understanding, no capacity to love, and no ability to take care of even ourselves. As we grow, we will always encounter others who are older, wiser, stronger and more able than we are. So when we lose, do we choose to keep on trying and to grow from it or do we just give up?
So does it not matter if we win or lose? Yes, it matters. If it does not matter then we won’t grow. It matters for us to see where we are in our growing process. It does not matter that we are not yet finished in growing. Jesus said “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” Jesus said that it is better to be sad when we lose than to not care at all. For Jesus is our counselor and our coach, He wants to teach us, train us and raise us up to be in His winning team. He wants to grow us into a winner. So He comforts those who are sad but with hope in his unfailing leadership.
Jesus continues: “Blessed are the meek.” He is telling you, “If you will trust me and let me coach you, I will open up many opportunities for you to grow. Sometimes you won't understand what I am doing, and sometimes it will not be comfortable, but I promise you my program is designed for your growth so you can grow to inherit my creative purpose and serve many on my behalf. You don't have to design your own training. You don't have to be anxious about your progress. You just have to trust me and obey me.”
But you ask, “What are your ways?” To this Jesus answers, “my way is the righteous way. So if you desire to live to please me, you will indeed find out. For ‘blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.’ I have come to be the model of righteousness to show you, to teach you and to remind you how I lived to please the Father. He has given you His Word, what is right and wrong, good or bad, and true or false. I am showing you how to live it out accordingly.”
“When you understand my ways and imitate my righteous living, as you are blessed with my peace and joy, teach those who don't understand. If anyone offended you and caused pain because of their sin, teach them my ways and imitate my forgiveness. As you forgive their sin, you will be cleansed of yours. For ‘Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.’”
“As you are cleansed according to your willingness to forgive others, you will see me: how I agree with the Father; how I depend on the Father; how I speak in the Father’s authority; how I minister in the Father’s power; how I finish the Father’s work. For ‘Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see me.’”
“Now you are sent to a world filled with conflicts and fighting. Be my ambassador for peace making. You will inherit His creation as His children. You will govern it in peace as I, the prince of peace, have shown you, for my righteous kingdom will come and my ‘Good Will to All’ will be on earth as it is in heaven.”
“Don’t be surprised if you are persecuted for righteousness’ sake. For yours is the kingdom of heaven. Stand alone in me. Your reward is great in heaven.”
Tom and Tehwan Tso
“The outcome of your faith is the salvation of your souls.” 1Peter 1:9
“信心的果效， 就是灵魂的救恩” 彼得前书1：9
November 17, 2010
His master replied, "Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!" - Matthew 25:21
Testing allows one to discover how well a product is made when placed under extreme stress. Increasing the pulling pressure between two objects reveals the amount of tension that can be withstood in a chain link. Eventually, the "choking" point occurs. In sports, we ascertain the "choking" point for athletes by putting them into a pressure situation. At what point will the athlete lose concentration and collapse under the pressure? It is under these stressful times that we discover how well we have been trained to withstand the pressure and make right decisions regardless of outside influences.
In my younger days I played sports. I came to observe that we fail under pressure usually because we reach a point where our ability to focus on execution yields to concern about outcome. This worry about outcome forces us to lose our concentration. The fear of failure begins to rule our emotions and actions, which ultimately results in our failure. What we fear has come upon us. It becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
In life, we see giving in to pressure in the form of compulsive behavior, withdrawal, anger, abuse, moral failure, and dishonesty, to name just a few manifestations.
Jesus never yielded to pressure. He never made decisions based on outcome. He always made the right decision. He always performed the same no matter what the circumstance. He lived a life based on absolutes, not circumstances. He never gave in to "situational ethics."
As God entrusts us with more and more responsibility, He brings more and more pressures into our lives to "test the product," to make sure that He can give even more responsibility to us. This process helps us see where we are in our maturity and determines our level of future responsibility.
Are you a product that can withstand the product test? Will you perform as the Maker designed no matter what outside pressures come? Know that you cannot perform well unless you are continually in relationship with and obedient to the one who made you. Trust the product developer today. He has made you to perform well under pressure.
I pray right now for Os Hillman, I lift up my mind, heart and voice with the strength and power of God’s spirit within us to cover this child of the Most High God. I thank God for his words which are holy, lovely and pure. I ask that His blessing chase Os down and overtake him so that we all may glean from what is left in the field. I do not know Os personally, however I know in time we all will…..after all we are One; in Christ.
November 13, 2010
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1 by Os Hillman
"The second son he named Ephraim and said, 'It is because God has made me fruitful in the land of my suffering.'" Genesis 41:52
When Joseph was elevated to rule over the Egyptian kingdom, he revealed some profound truths gained from the experiences of his years of adversity. He named his first son, Manasseh for, he said, "God has made me forget all my trouble and all my father's household" (Gen. 41:51b). His second son was named Ephraim because, "God has made me fruitful in the land of my suffering."
Whenever God takes us through the land of affliction, He will do two things through that affliction: 1) He will bring such healing that we will be able to forget the pain, and 2) He will make us fruitful from the painful experiences.
God does not waste our afflictions if we allow Him the freedom to complete the work in us. His desire is to create virtue that remains during the times of testing so that He can bring us into the place of fruitfulness in the very area of our testing. He has never promised to keep us from entering the valleys of testing, but He has promised to make us fruitful in them. He is the God who turns the Valley of Achor (trouble) into a door of hope (see Hos. 2:15).
If you are in the valley of affliction, now is the time to press into Him. When the time comes to bring you out of this valley, He will heal your memories and bring fruit from this very time.
One of the reasons I love daily devotions is that it helps me to take pause of where God has been so good to me even when I was suffering.
Some days I would like to thing we do not have to struggle or feel pain, but then I know that must be a very immature perception in reality. We cannot learn all things through rainbows, daisy’s and sunny days. However, we must always remember that God knows how far we can be pushed or pulled before we are injured and He wants only what is for our Good not harm.
We must find peace and joy through our faith in His faithfulness, then we will have rest for our souls. I pray that we stop whining a bit and do as Os stated….press in to Him. He is faithful to finish the good work He has started in us. I believe that for myself and each of us …if we will only let it be done unto us as He wills.
With the heart and love of our Christ Jesus,
November 12, 2010
I believe what He says, I trust what He promises and I will stand on it - what about you?
In 2 Corinthians 10:4 (NIV) God states "The weapons we fight with are not weapons of this world. On the contrary they have divine power to demolish strongholds."
How can we read that and not grab hold of the liberty with hope and joy - the only way is if we don't believe it. OUCH! So I am leaving off with The Message translation of 2 Corinthians 10: 3-6. I pray for us all, we need to do that all day long. We are one body - every part of us effects the whole whether we know the entire body or not. Let's grow to see that, let's embrace what God knows. Let's be mature in Christ so that He can receive in full what He suffered so much to obtain. He already paid for it, we are just slow to allow Him to have it in His possession fully.
God bless each and every one of you - in Love,
3-6The world is unprincipled. It's dog-eat-dog out there! The world doesn't fight fair. But we don't live or fight our battles that way—never have and never will. The tools of our trade aren't for marketing or manipulation, but they are for demolishing that entire massively corrupt culture. We use our powerful God-tools for smashing warped philosophies, tearing down barriers erected against the truth of God, fitting every loose thought and emotion and impulse into the structure of life shaped by Christ. Our tools are ready at hand for clearing the ground of every obstruction and building lives of obedience into maturity.
November 11, 2010
Today is the 11th Dad, 11-11-10, this day is important to you. What makes 11-11-10 different? What victories are you winning today? Where are the strongholds finally crushed? Where is your strength rising, pushing through, out, and above?
Speak to me – to us; your body. Speak and allow us to comprehend in full. I am not alone, your body has many members… That is your house with many rooms! Show me my room that you have prepared…if I have room mates expose them even here now, because your kingdom has come here on earth as it is in heaven.
To Christ our King be the Glory and honor and praise for ever – Amen
Today is important because you are coming together. There is a great rise before the wake …this day.
A paradigm shift in each moment; all my pieces will fit. The bulk cannot squeeze through our opening, only the Spirit of God can conform to this shape.
The thieves – they crash to have entry. Don’t get frazzled …the doorway is protected by me.
Just keep coming – flowing in our body. The rest is up to me. You heard exactly what I was saying. Yes, the rest for the soul was a great price I paid.
So rest, in the arms of our Father, sweet child let Him bounce you on His knee. He loves with such depth and pleasure you will have nothing but joy as you search His face.
Search and seek that vision…search from night into each day. He is looking and adoring. He sees you all; you’re well on your way.
Just walk ….alone or together…it does not alter your joy. In times of isolation…this is when you are face to face. He misses you as you miss Him. He however can see much larger things.
Trust Him; He will never fail you. His love never quits any job. There is no void in His pleasure – there is no lack in a need. There is no day without completion. There is no end to eternity.
I pray for us all this day…let’s live like this….let’s just give it a try, even if just for today .
The Kings Heart
The king’s heart is in the hand of the LORD; he directs it like a watercourse wherever he pleases. All a man’s ways seem right to him, but the LORD weighs the heart.
A king has power over others. His will and command prevail, or at least it seems so to the kings of this world. The rich and famous flaunting their power of influence, though not the power of authority, also declare by their lifestyle that they are in control of their destiny. Then there are the self-righteous who think by their own power they can be good enough to make them feel good about themselves. They are regulating their behaviors according to their own standards of good deeds and good people. This describes practically all of us, yes, that is you and me, even though we dislike being labeled “self-righteous.” We all strive to be good and to do good deeds. But according to whom? “All a man’s ways seem right to him, but the LORD weighs the heart” (Pro 21:2). According to man himself his ways just “seem” to be right, not necessarily truly
right, but in man’s arrogance he considers them right without having them weighed by the LORD.
我，即使我们厌恶被标记“自以为义”。 我们大家努力去做好人和做好事。 但是
While we think that we are kings sitting in our own castles, directing the affairs of our own dominions, God actually has our hearts in His hand and he directs them like watercourses wherever He pleases (Pro 21:1). He causes all things to work together for the benefit of those who love Him (Ro 8:28). He can direct our heart to do good therefore bringing benefit to those who love Him. Or he can leave our hearts alone to do selfish things which God ultimately causes to bring good to those who love Him. It is comforting to know that whether someone plans to do good or evil and whether someone actually does good or evil, God always works out His good purpose. But woe to him who intends or does evil for God’s wrath will be upon him!
In biblical history the Moabite king Balak asked prophet Balaam to curse the Israelites. God caused Balaam to speak blessing to the Israelites every time he opened his mouth to speak curse on them (Nu 22-24). God’s ultimate purpose was to protect the Israelites. This is an example of someone intended evil but God directly intervened in its execution.
An example of someone intended evil and God allowed it to play out for the ultimate good is the story of Joseph and his 10 brothers. His brothers did evil to him by selling him into slavery in the land of Egypt. After Joseph reunited and reconciled with his brothers in Egypt during the great famine, he told them that they intended to harm him, but God intended it for good to accomplish what was being done, the saving of the many lives of their families (Ge 50:20).
In the story of Rahab the Jericho prostitute who intended to do good to the two Israelite spies by hiding them in her home, she carried her good intention into action (Jos 2). This is an example of someone who intended good and followed through with a good deed. Through this God carried out His ultimate purpose of encouraging and preparing the Israelites for their first battle upon entering the Promised Land. God honored Rahab for her good intention and good deed. He chose her, a gentile prostitute, to be one of the ancestors of our Lord Jesus (Mt 1:5).
她把她的好意带进行动中〔书2〕。 这是有人有善意和以好行跟进的例子。 通过
God also directs the affair of man in the situation of someone who intends good but fails to realize it. A biblical example of this is Samson, an Israelite judge who was “set apart to God from birth, and he will begin the deliverance of Israel from the hands of the Philistines” (Jdg 13:5). Certainly Samson knew his responsibility as the judge of Israel, but he let his flesh govern his actions. This led to his downfall and capture by the Philistines. Even though he ended his twenty years of leadership of Israel in his death and the death of many Philistines (Jdg 16:25-31), God’s purpose of delivering Israel from Philistine oppression was fulfilled.
Although God is sovereign in His providence and all things ultimately work to benefit those who love God, we must be conscious of the part God intends for us to play in His grand scheme of things. We must heed God’s will in performing our duties for the part, not overstepping our boundaries or shrinking back, or taking credit for our accomplishment instead of acknowledging God’s grace, lest we suffer God’s wrath as the
consequence. In the final chapter of Judah’s history, Assyria was used by God to
discipline Judah as “the rod” of His anger and “the club” of His wrath against Judah “the godless nation,” but the Assyria’s purpose was “to destroy”, going beyond God’s intention for Judah (Is 10:5-7), so Assyria was later destroyed.
Let us welcome God’s direction of our heart, and submit to Jesus’ reign of our life. Let us be like Rahab, start with a godly intention in all that we do and carry it out well, and then leave the outcome to our sovereign God.
Tom and Tehwan Tso
“The outcome of your faith is the salvation of your souls.” 1Peter 1:9
“信心的果效， 就是灵魂的救恩” 彼得前书1：9
November 10, 2010
"'Come, follow Me,' Jesus said, 'and I will make you fishers of men.'" Matthew 4:19I thank God for this day, for the wisdom that is produced through Os Hillman's faithful witness and testimonies each and every day. I can stand in agreement with each of these words and pray for those of you who do not yet see what He is speaking of here. I pray that you search for ways ...encounters to prove it as truth...because you will not be disappointed my friends.
Our calling has three distinct stages, which we can see in the lives of many called before us, to become mature fishers of men who greatly impact God's Kingdom. First, there is the gestation period. This is the development stage of our lives. It may involve years of normal work experiences. You may be a Christian during this time, or you may be following after worldly success as a non-Christian. Paul spent years in religious and political training, persecuting believers most of his early life. Moses spent years in the court of Pharaoh and 40 years tending flocks in the desert. Jesus spent 30 years living at home and working in His father's carpentry business. However, all these years were part of their preparation.
Next is the crisis stage. Sooner or later, God calls you into relationship with Him. For many, like Paul, it comes through dramatic encounters like being knocked off a horse, blinded and spoken to personally by God. Some people are more difficult than others to reach and so require this level of crisis. This is a time when God requires major changes so that you follow Him fully. It can be a time in which God harnesses years of experience for a new life purpose. Paul's earthly experiences would be used in his calling to the religious and political leaders of his day. For Moses, the burning bush experience would begin his journey in which he would discover his ultimate calling after years of preparation. For Peter, it was his denial of Jesus three times that allowed him to face his shallow commitment to Christ. For Jesus, it was the garden of Gethsemane. These were the benchmark turning points for men who made an impact on their world.
Last is the fruit-bearing stage. In it, God's power is manifested in your life like never before. God takes all your experiences and uses them to build His Kingdom in and through your life. Your obedience to this final call results in fruitfulness you could never imagine without the long preparation process. For Abraham, it resulted in becoming the father of many nations. For Paul, it resulted in bringing the gospel to the Gentiles. And for Peter, it meant becoming the leader of the Church. For Jesus, it was salvation for the entire world.
What does God want to achieve through your life? God has a plan that is so incredible you cannot comprehend it. It requires only that you love Him and follow Him. Then you will become fishers of men like the world has never known.
I ask this knowing it is the will of our father because Christ himself spoke it in advance for us to be watching out for it with hope in our heart.
November 9, 2010
There is another side to this however, that if someone does not know me very well they might misinterpret. When I state something, it is my view from where I am looking, what thoughts I have merged with what I see and the events that have lead me find experiential knowledge. When I speak, I expect others to give with their best perceptions as well. I do not know how else to seek solutions, solve problems and grow respectful relationships. I am seeking to correct my point of view if I am incorrect. Sometimes I get a bit befuddled because I assume people know that if I am taking the time to engage in conversation with them then I believe what they might add from the same has great value! If I so show a confidence of sorts, it is only when I am basing my best and thought filled pondering on God - which brings me to Daddy...are we there yet?
I am closing in on 50 years now of tripping, falling and flapping till I fly....if only for brief moments in time. My Daddy has been with me every step of the way and I know that. These past 25 years have seen me whining at time "how much further"; "I'm bored"; "We aren't ever gonna get there are we"; "I gonna wet my pants if you don't stop"; "I'm hungry and car sick"! But God has known when to stop. He knows when to switch highways, change vehicles, fuel up all I have had to do is decided to go the miles with him and try to not be so difficult...and possibly - dare I say it - engage Him along the way :0
I wish I could say there are not still day when I say....Dad, come on ..REALLY I have to still go further? Don't you think you are expecting a bit much from me? We both know who I am and what you are working with here. But then he reminds me....You CAN do this, because I am in you, and you are in me and ALL things are possible because I AM.
Today, look in the car that you are riding in. Maybe it has to be a bus because of all the people crammed in there with you - it shouldn't be though......
Think about that as you enjoy what Os has to say today, I did!
With love to each and everyone of you,
Hindrances to Christ's Rule - by Os Hillman
"The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds." 2 Corinthians 10:4
The Bible says when Christ comes to live in your heart, old things are passed away, all things become new (see 2 Cor. 5:17). The Lord has put a new Spirit in us. Previously, I could not understand why so many of us who proclaimed Christ had such little impact on the kingdom of darkness. It seemed to me that our culture should be impacted much more if His children walked in the light as Jesus did. Jesus impacted His culture like no other man.
I saw many workplace believers, who proclaimed Christ, living no differently than a person who had not claimed Him as Lord. These men and women had a form of religion, but little power that reflected Christ's rule in their lives. Then one day God took me through a time of testing that led to a discovery of generational influences that impacted the way I viewed people and circumstances on a subconscious basis. I discovered this was a stronghold that had been implanted many generations earlier. Because the stronghold operated on a subconscious level, it was not easily recognizable. Strongholds keep us from being free to reflect Christ in and through our lives because they require allegiance until they are dealt with. Strongholds can often be so hidden that we would not even identify them as evil. A stronghold of fear, control, rebellion, insecurity, idolatry, pride, or bitterness may be hidden until it is revealed through circumstances.
All strongholds are built in our lives as a result of seeking to meet one or more of seven basic needs God has created in us. Once we believe a lie that God cannot meet a need without our effort, we open our spirit to a stronghold. The more lies we believe, the more we invite these strongholds to take root in our lives. Are you ineffective in your Christian experience? Are there besetting sins that seem to recur in your life? You may find that satan has built a fortress in your heart that has been there many generations. You must ask God's forgiveness for entertaining this stronghold, and you must renounce it. Then as Christ renews your mind and heart, you will see Christ's power released in your life like never before.
November 8, 2010
Fabric of Life
How does one measure the depth of deep
what limits the length of painAt which point does far begin
at what distance determines an endDoes our beauty enhance our soul
or simply decorate a vast empty shellDoes our life embrace and extend
or suffocate all that livesWhat is internal always reaches beyond,
once external it can stab extremely deepEach breath of our lives mesh a fabric …
as we pass in and through the moments of our dayWe pass, we speak, we consider
But do we dare look into their eyesThere is a risk that we take with each moment
a sight, a pierce…but will it hold our gazeIf so we see a depth beyond the crystal surface
an abyss into the center of the seaThe timid opt only for wading
keeping distance from a voice they seem to hearThey splash and frolic in the shallowest of waters
Where avoidance and distraction breaks the moment that was sharedIt is true, my face you found so lovely,
Yet I desired for you to truly see meI watch you wade and peer into the reflection
I even sense when you are losing true sightI pray you stay and look beyond mere beauty
If only for a glimpse into the wonders of this cobalt seaDear God, I pray lust not consume you,
There is vision beyond this flesh that you seeCan’t you stop even just for one moment?
listen to the whisper of tranquility offering you peaceTake one more step into my wanting waters
Feel the refreshing coolness splash atop your bare feetStand here, still, as it rolls in to embrace you,
You feel the pull to return into the serene seaTo ride these waves you must merge in with your body
With trust and time you will understand her ebb and flowRespect of her strength is your lifeline
Her deep mystery is the passion for which you yearnYour thrill will be in the experience,
A true experience which will enrich your lifeYet here you stand isolated and lonely,
a man…or an island as they sayWhat you’re now refusing to remember
are the times you braved the waters depthsTo capture the loveliest of images
the face you longed to embraceYears later you now know this vision
and you see you reached who you fought to becomeYou were not intended to be isolated and lonely
Yet to leave…again you must brave the depths of that seaAlone you will never make it
seek a true image, a vision, full and completeThere is no fear as you dive; you are empowered
merged into the body and risen into a new lifeHere there is no battle or struggle…
Simply the depths of true peace giving lifeCandace Huffmaster 2005© all rights reserved
November 6, 2010
Based on Charles Spurgeon’s classic devotion “Morning and Evening”.
This, then, is how you should pray:
“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one, for yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.”
The above is traditionally called the Lord’s Prayer which in fact is our Lord’s teaching on prayer to His disciples. Therefore this ought to be a model of how we should pray to God today.
The Lord teaches us to begin our prayer where all true prayers must commence, with the spirit of adoption, calling God “Our Father.” As the Bible says, God “predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.” (Eph 1:5-6) There is no acceptable prayer until we can say, as the prodigal son, “I will set out and go back to my father” (Lk 15:18). Even with us as wayward sons God is our loving Father waiting for our return to Him. Our Father in heaven longs for us to realize that this world is not our home, we are just passers by.
With this childlike spirit we soon perceive the majesty and holiness of the Father “in heaven” and our spirit ascends to devout adoration, saying, “Hallowed be Your name.” As the child lisping, “Abba, Father,” (Ro 8:15) grows into the cherub crying, “Holy, Holy, Holy” (Rev 4:8), we join in the angelic praise of heaven from where we are, freeing ourselves from the distraction of our circumstances, be it positive or negative.
It is only a step from rapturous worship to the glowing missionary spirit, which is an outgrowth of love and reverent adoration, “Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” We desire and pray with expectation for God’s supreme dominion to come upon the earth, “that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth” (Php 2:10), and that all people will turn to Him, as he promises “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 will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land” (2 Chr 7:14). We pray with anticipation of forgiveness and healing of the land when His kingdom comes.
After the above mission minded petition to God for the global spiritual need, next comes our personal heartfelt dependence on God for our physical need, “Give us today our daily bread.” Note that it is for today’s bread that we ask. Therefore we are dependent on God for our need day by day. Then, with further illumination from the Spirit, we discover that we are not only dependent, but sinful, and we ask for mercy, “Forgive us our debts as we also have forgiven our debtors.” Our moral debts, no matter to whom we owe, we ultimately owe them to God, for Jesus said that whatever we did or did not for one of the least of these brothers of His, we did for Him (Mt 25:40, 45). David recognized this truth when he said to God that “against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight” (Ps 51:4) even though he murdered Uriah and took his wife. He knew he needed God’s forgiveness in addition to man’s. We need and desire God’s forgiveness so much that we also forgive our debtors in order for us to be free to receive God’s mercy and grace.
Being pardoned, having the imputed righteousness of Christ and knowing our acceptance by God, we humbly ask for holy perseverance, “Lead us not into temptation.” The person who is really forgiven is anxious not to sin again. We know that on our own we cannot win the spiritual warfare, however the battle is not ours, but God’s. He will send His commander of the army of the LORD to defeat our enemies (Jos 5:14). We just have to put on the full armor of God to stand firm (Eph 6:13-17).
The possession of justification leads to a keen desire for sanctification. “Forgive us our debts,” that is justification. “Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one,” that is sanctification. As a result there follows a triumphant ascription of praise, “For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.” We rejoice that our King reigns. For the Proverbs says, “When the righteous thrive, the people rejoice; when the wicked rule, the people groan” (Pr 29:2). And who else is more righteous than Christ Himself. “To Him be glory and dominion for ever and ever” (Revelation 1:6).
Thus from a sense of adoption to fellowship with our reigning Lord, this short model of prayer conducts the soul. Lord, may our prayer be a heavenly symphony that orchestrates all aspects of our life and our praise ascends to You in heaven. “May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer” (Ps 19:14).
Tom and Tehwan Tso
"Simon, Simon, satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers." Luke 22:31-32
Have you ever perceived yourself to be at one place spiritually only to discover that you were actually far from this place? Peter perceived himself to be so spiritually strong that he was prepared to suffer greatly for his Master. Yet Jesus knew where Peter really was in his own pilgrimage. He knew that Peter's enthusiasm did not match his reality. He was suffering from an attitude of self-righteousness. So, how did Jesus help Peter match his perception to his reality? Peter was the object of a divine setup.
First, notice that satan asked permission to sift Peter as wheat. Jesus determined that satan would be used to bring Peter to the maturity level both Jesus and Peter really desired. And Jesus was praying that Peter would pass the test. Jesus told Peter that he would deny Him three times that very day. Peter could not believe what Jesus was saying.
Sometimes the lessons we must learn are very painful. This experience was necessary in Peter's life. It was necessary to purge Peter from his sin of self-righteousness. This very lesson would allow Peter to come face to face with his own misperception of where he was in his relationship and devotion to Jesus. When he was forced to confront this, it nearly broke him apart. He wept bitterly once he realized he had done just as Jesus had predicted.
This confrontation with reality is necessary at times in our lives. Do not be surprised if Jesus allows you to experience some painful circumstance. You may be the subject of a divine setup designed to bring you to a greater maturity level in your walk with Jesus. It may not be a fun experience when you go through it, but you will, like Peter, become a leader whom God will use to lead others.
Today I pray for that bit of Peter that is in all of us. I pray that we sit face to face with Christ and listen each day as He tells us what we are about to do if we do not pull close and abide with God's will moment by moment.
With the love of our Christ,
November 5, 2010
We are moving to the next phase of KB, Inc. VERY EXCITING TIMES my friends!
Much to do, much more to say…..however let us be ever mindful to be quick to listen, slow to speak and quick to be utilized as an every ready help in their time of trouble.
I praise God lifting us all up, because we ARE one body…so I can do that for us =D
With the love of our Christ,
November 2, 2010
"I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. The man who loves his life will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life" (John 12:24-26).
God is all about your death so that HIS success can be realized through you! This is why the Church is having such little impact - there are too many believers who have not yet died to their old nature so that Christ can live fully through them. When believers come to the end of themselves they will lose their lives to Him and live through the power of the Holy Spirit and begin to see the reality of a living gospel that impacts lives, workplaces, cities and nations.
"Much of modern Christian enterprise is 'Ishmael.' Born not of God, but of an inordinate desire to do God's will in our own way - the one thing our Lord never did," said Oswald Chambers. The psalmist describes what it means to live in our own strength:
"Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain. In vain you rise early and stay up late, toiling for food to eat - for he grants sleep to those he loves" (Ps 127:1-2).
How does one die so that Christ can be our all and all? It usually takes a crisis of significant proportions for most people to relinquish the control of their lives. It means we come to the end of ourselves and our striving to control the events in our lives and we finally come to the place where we can say, "Lord, I surrender. Please take full control of my life."
Have you come to this place with God in your life? Let go and let God make you a success His way.
After reading this devotional by Os – I was reminded of something in my journal back in 2003 or 4. After reading it I thought I would share it. I understand much of it now – but do not want to change any words because this is a journey and a process. Where ever you are know that God is always watching over you, teaching you, growing you. His desire for you is abundant love….no matter what it looks like from our eyes and mind ‘this day”. I am on the other side of where I was; much like Alice and her looking glass. God has truly grown me to understand what He told me so long ago: The sojourn is the answer; the questions an endless plight….Be still and know that I am God…and I love you: deeply, honestly, passionately, freely – always in all ways.
God let my spirit help me understand your will. I love you and I know you are with me. Please talk to me. What am I feeling? This talks to me so: Beautiful, wondrous is what you are to me. I love you still you have always been mine I am always here for you. I am your lord and you are my child I embrace you as you embrace me. You have always been mine, now you only see me this world cannot have you Candy you are mine and I will and have saved you.
Where did it all go? That was weird! You know me Father; you know my heart because it is yours. Your heart is strong, your mercy great. Let it all go. You are not about this world. Let me take you there. Follow. You have peace because you live in me. I dwell in you. You are save and at home. I will nurture you and I am embracing you. You are part of a big home. That will never end. You have been on a journey to learn. I am about to let you be…. Be what? What you are to be. There is one thing…. What is the one thing? Follow me. I hear you; I desire you…. I will follow. Are you sure? That frightens me… what are you asking? That is the one thing. How can you be afraid if you are ready? There is no fear in love. Would I ever hurt you? This world will hurt you; not me! You are safe in me. Give it time. It will come. Don’t be cautious with me, your discernment is for this world not for my kingdom. You have been broken; you tried to fix it…. there are still a few things. Father, stop the business, let me be only busy for your purposes. I don’t care about this world. I don’t want comfort that is of this world; I want to live and breathe your comfort. Have I always been with you, I mean, as you have always been? Have we all always been? What is this we are playing out? What is our purpose? Is it “the solution to our will”? If that is the case, I just want to say I don’t want to have a will separate from your will - I want to only see you. I have known some “great” men here… I have yearned for their love. I get it now; I was to yearn for you first. And I realize that if it had not have happened this way I would not have developed as you needed me.
Why wind? Why fragrance? Why sunshine? They are all beauty you desire. The wind embracing and refreshing you; the touch of the sun on your flesh; the beautiful smells which engulf and propel you…..it is just simple things I can do to bring my love into and around you. I do not want to type what I am thinking….. Will you help me with this one? Why does it still hurt so? Why do I long so? I know….they are beautiful memories. If things could have been different they would have been different but they are not; I understand. I made my choices. I did not follow my heart. But I did do what I thought was right. It was not what was going to make you internally happy though…. Just physically; right? You did not trust me. You were not walking with me. You were led by fear. Satan is fear. Fear is not a guide - only wisdom and insight are from me. Love you still….. I will always be here for you. The relationships here on earth are only temporary. In my kingdom they will not be as they are here and all will be well. For now I have other things in store for you. You will find happiness…. in me… always! I will not let you be incomplete; you know that. I love you. Enjoy! You have much, you are loved, and you are comfortable.
I do love you father. I always have. Thank you……
November 1, 2010
Are you all lovin' this crisp, cool day? From the breath we breath to the crunch under our feet it is there...very invigerating, I think.
Anyway....As I finished reading Os Hillmans TGIF (today God is first) devotional this morning, I thought back to the time when I was not close to our Lord as I am not. I remember being a worldly planner. I stressed, planned, asked EVERYONE what to do. I was always so inundated with the out-to, should-do's that at the end of my desicions I was the example used for "coulda-shoulda-woulda".
This verse is the change that took place in me. Even though it took place IN me, it was not OF me. It was the marvelous workings of the trinity. So now when I am making decisions they are based on the 3 things that remain in me - faith, hope and love. When I can fight off my "self" and allow him to raise up and show me the way I will always make the "best" decision....because it will be the one of LOVE.
1 Corinthians 13:11-13 GWT) 11When I was a child, I spoke like a child, thought like a child, and reasoned like a child. When I became an adult, I no longer used childish ways. 12Now we see a blurred image in a mirror. Then we will see very clearly. Now my knowledge is incomplete. Then I will have complete knowledge as God has complete knowledge of me. 13So these three things remain: faith, hope, and love. But the best one of these is love.
I pray that you see what Os has written, listen for the Spirit to speak to you and then do what you have been shown today. Just enough for today is all we need for tomorrow has enough worries of it's own.
I thank Him for His mercy and grace for this day over all of us; with the Love of our Christ
Worldly Planning - By Os Hillman
"Or do I make my plans in a worldly manner so that in the same breath I say, 'Yes, yes' and 'No, no'?" 2 Corinthians 1:17
The apostle Paul was discussing his plans to come to the church at Corinth. He was acknowledging the serious nature of his trip and informing the Corinthians that he did not flippantly come to this decision to visit them. It was a matter that had been given serious prayer, not one made in the spur of the moment.
Planning from God's view is a process. It isn't merely an exercise in reason and analysis. It requires entering into the mind of Christ together with our minds to determine which course to take. In the Old Testament, the priests wore breastplates with the Urim and Thummim in a pouch on their breasts. It was like a roll of dice that the priests were required to perform to know which direction they were to take on a matter. It was the ultimate release of all decisions into God's hand. God did not want the priests to rely on their own intellects for final decisions.
We have an uncanny ability to make decisions based on our own needs and wants. However, God desires that we seek Him to know His plans for us. David was a skilled warrior who never lost a battle. He consulted God on every decision. He knew the results of the battle rested in God's hand. So, if he was to gain victory, he had to know God's mind on the matter. Sometimes this requires more time given to the process in order to hear His voice. Sometimes it may even require fasting and prayer. Sometimes it may require input from other godly friends.
Are you a man or woman who makes decisions based on God's purposes for your life? Do you take every major decision and put it before the throne to determine God's mind on the matter? If so, you will avoid making decisions in a worldly manner.