Fear, anxiety, worry, anger these are not just words that taunt us, these are emotions and feelings we struggle with every day. They are tools in the devil's arsenal that lead to depression, death and destruction, we must learn too let them go.
Corrie ten Boom many years ago said this, “Don’t hold onto anything so tightly that Jesus can’t take it from you.”
Corrie was a lady who knew adversity, torture, hate, and slavery. Her family hid from the Nazis but were captured and sent to concentration camps everything they had was taken from them, everything they knew changed, everyone of their friends and family gone, she lost everything except her faith.
Her hope, her joy was not in things or people, it wasn’t even in her freedom or family, at a young age she was separated from everything and everyone she knew, except Christ.
Everyone is looking for peace, joy security and hope, the problem is we are looking in the wrong place. We look and may find temporary peace, hope or security but if it is in people, things or our surroundings it can all change over night.
In Corrie's world, it did, they went from family meal time, to hiding in a wall to save their lives,to being herded like cattle into concentration camps where most of them died, almost overnight.
In 2010 our lives were on the upswing after great financial loss and starting over from ground zero in our 40s , we were starting to see new light, then one day I woke up and couldn’t walk, a month later the doctors tell me that I will never work full time again, I lost my health, my ability to earn an income to provide for my family.
But I gained new faith, God's peace overwhelmingly took over our lives, He has provided every day for every need we have, and He still does.I learned what Corrie had said to not hold onto something so tight that Jesus couldn’t have it, how can God give us more blessings when we hold onto the past? He has so much to give us if we are willing to receive Him. When we stop pursuing control and pursue Christ, it doesn’t matter what goes on around us, or in us, or to us, for we understand that we have no control, and most importantly God is in control.
If you’re hope, joy, peace or security are in your finances, job, family, health, home or others, then they are temporary and subject to change in the blink of an eye.
Only when you’re hope, joy, peace, and security are in Christ, will you have what you’re looking for and what everyone else is looking for.
Don’t hold onto anything or anyone so tightly that they can’t go into the hands of Jesus, for there is no safer place any of us can be.
Wherever you’re at right now, if your faith is being challenged, know God is still on the throne, He has not and will not forsake you. He is with you, learn to walk with Him at His pace, He will sustain you.
We need to trust the Lord always, make Him the desire of our hearts, do as He says, commit our ways to Him no matter what, and wait on Him to move in our lives.
God’s word says this;
“Trust in the Lord and do what is good; dwell in the land and live securely. Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires. Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act, making your righteousness shine like the dawn, your justice like the noonday. Be silent before the Lord and wait expectantly for him; do not be agitated by one who prospers in his way, by the person who carries out evil plans. Refrain from anger and give up your rage; do not be agitated — it can only bring harm. For evildoers will be destroyed, but those who put their hope in the Lord will inherit the land.”
Psalms 37:3-9 CSB
“Therefore I tell you: Don’t worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothing? Consider the birds of the sky: They don’t sow or reap or gather into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you worth more than they? Can any of you add one moment to his lifespan by worrying? And why do you worry about clothes? Observe how the wildflowers of the field grow: They don’t labor or spin thread. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was adorned like one of these. If that’s how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and thrown into the furnace tomorrow, won’t he do much more for you — you of little faith? So don’t worry, saying, ‘What will we eat? ’ or ‘What will we drink? ’ or ‘What will we wear?’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you. Therefore don’t worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”Matthew 6:25-34CSB
“Immediately he made the disciples get into the boat and go ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. After dismissing the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. Well into the night, he was there alone. Meanwhile, the boat was already some distance from land, battered by the waves, because the wind was against them. Jesus came toward them walking on the sea very early in the morning. When the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost!” they said, and they cried out in fear. Immediately Jesus spoke to them. “Have courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter answered him, “command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” And climbing out of the boat, Peter started walking on the water and came toward Jesus. But when he saw the strength of the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus reached out his hand, caught hold of him, and said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” When they got into the boat, the wind ceased. Then those in the boat worshiped him and said, “Truly you are the Son of God.””
Matthew 14:22-33 CSB
A Godly marriage is one built on faith, faith in God’s promises and help. It is not God changing your spouse it is God changing you.
We have to put Christ first in our marriage, serve Him above all else.
Submit to His authority over us, our spouse our children, our homes , our finances, our careers, there is nothing we should hold back.
The desires of our heart should be to walk with Christ everyday, and for our families to follow, if you want a Godly marriage it starts with you surrendering all your heart, mind, body and soul to Christ, if you’re not willing to start here then ask God to change you and help you, if you don’t then things will never change.
Ask God to make you more Christ like, to give grace freely as you have received it, to guide you with wisdom to forgive as you have been forgiven, to love as He loves you, then watch as Christ manifest Himself in your character.
God’s word is clear, it is our flesh that kicks against the things God says, we put ourselves first, this is why marriages are in trouble today, everyone does what is right in their own eyes.
You and I cannot change the hearts of another, we cannot change our own hearts, but Christ can. If you have been married 50 years or newly married learn this secret, surrender yourself , your family, your household to Christ everyday and watch what He will do.
Christ sacrificially loves us, we should do the same in our marriages, this means putting Christ first, our spouse then ourselves, love and respect are given by grace through Christ to each other.
God’s word says this;
“Trust in the Lord and do what is good; dwell in the land and live securely. Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desires. Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act, making your righteousness shine like the dawn, your justice like the noonday.” Psalms 37:3-6 CSB
“Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord, because the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of the body. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives are to submit to their husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself for her to make her holy, cleansing her with the washing of water by the word. He did this to present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or anything like that, but holy and blameless. In the same way, husbands are to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hates his own flesh but provides and cares for it, just as Christ does for the church, since we are members of his body. For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. This mystery is profound, but I am talking about Christ and the church. To sum up, each one of you is to love his wife as himself, and the wife is to respect her husband.”
Ephesians 5:22-33 CSB
We don’t know the plans God has for our lives, each of us though God has a plan for.
We might not understand why He leads us through the fire or valleys but He leads us through, we might not understand why death takes the young or disease overthrows our bodies and minds , or why we suffer through this life, but we know that God leads us through the shadows of death that His rod and staff comforts and protects us.
We seek answers from others, from God’s word from God, and we don’t always get them, but God is still there with us. He has promised never to leave us or forsake us, this is not based on our ability to live a holy life, this promise is based on the fact that God alone is Holy.
Our human condition is one that is fallible, our minds and bodies are failing, are susceptible to disease and death, only through Christ Jesus can we overcome sin and death, this does not mean we’re not going to be sick, suffer, or die, this does not mean we are not going to sin , this means that none of these things have power over us, rather we are safely tucked into the hands of God were He holds us, comforts us and stays with us always.
Troubles come, disease may overtake us, death may visit us but we are always and always will be in the hands of our creator, and there is nothing we should fear, for God alone is our shield, protecter and salvation.
God’s word says this:
“For I know the plans I have for you” — this is the Lord’s declaration — “plans for your well-being, not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. You will call to me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you search for me with all your heart.”
Jeremiah 29:11-13 CSB
“Now this is what the Lord says — the one who created you, Jacob, and the one who formed you, Israel — “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; you are mine. I will be with you when you pass through the waters, and when you pass through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you. You will not be scorched when you walk through the fire, and the flame will not burn you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, and your Savior. I have given Egypt as a ransom for you, Cush and Seba in your place. Because you are precious in my sight and honored, and I love you, I will give people in exchange for you and nations instead of your life. Do not fear, for I am with you; I will bring your descendants from the east, and gather you from the west.”
Isaiah 43:1-5 CSB
“But God, who is rich in mercy, because of his great love that he had for us, made us alive with Christ even though we were dead in trespasses. You are saved by grace! He also raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavens in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might display the immeasurable riches of his grace through his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For you are saved by grace through faith, and this is not from yourselves; it is God’s gift — not from works, so that no one can boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared ahead of time for us to do.”
Ephesians 2:4-10 CSB
Of all the blessings I have received in my life, God’s grace is one I continue to receive daily, I don’t deserve it but God gives it to me, and reveals His love to me each time.
I will never completely understand His grace, why He would give us grace, mercy and love when we live and act the way we do. We surely do not love Christ as He loves us, we truly do not give grace and mercy to one another as He gives it to us.
Even those who reject Christ receive grace and mercy, for God provides for them, wether they have abundance or little, it is from God.
Here in America, we are totally living in the grace, mercy and love of God, we of all people on this earth should be grateful, humble and God honoring in how we live, but we are the exact opposite. We have become a nation of people who believe we are entitled to anything we want, we are prideful and we do not even acknowledge God exist, until we are in need.
His grace and mercy is what sustains us right now.
We deserve nothing good, for none of us are good, yes at times we do good things, but not always. We complain more than we compliment, we curse more than we bless, we ask for more than we give, we think more about ourselves than others , we build our kingdom , seek our own good far more than we do the kingdom of God, or Christ Himself.
This is why I say, of all the blessings I have received in my life, God’s grace is one I continue to receive daily. I could daily stay on my knees 24 hours a day and thank God for His grace, and never move for 5 or 6 years or longer, before I caught up with thanking Him, or I can walk with Him daily and give Him all glory and honor in all I do.
I could speak of His grace forever, but if you have never received the gift of salvation, through faith by grace then we need to talk, for you won’t understand.
You and I have received far more than our share of God’s grace, if Christ is your Lord and Savior, His grace alone through the gift of salvation is more than we deserve, let us not only live in His grace, walk in His grace and be receivers of His grace, let us be givers of His grace, let us be telling of His grace and in all we do may our lives be portraits of His grace.
God’s word says this:
“Indeed, we have all received grace upon grace from his fullness, for the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.”
John 1:16-17 CSB
“With great power the apostles were giving testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was on all of them.” Acts 4:33 CSB
“But I consider my life of no value to myself; my purpose is to finish my course and the ministry I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of God’s grace.” Acts 20:24 CSB
“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. They are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” Romans 3:23-24 CSB
“We have also obtained access through him by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.”
Romans 5:2 CSB
“Indeed, everything is for your benefit so that, as grace extends through more and more people, it may cause thanksgiving to increase to the glory of God.” 2 Corinthians 4:15 CSB
“And God is able to make every grace overflow to you, so that in every way, always having everything you need, you may excel in every good work.”
2 Corinthians 9:8 CSB
“And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
Colossians 3:17 CSB
God has set each of us who are His free from slavery to sin and death. We can choose like Israel to fall back to what we knew, or follow God wherever He leads.
The choices are ,Life or death, freedom or slavery, Yahweh or yourself.
Each must choose whom we follow, how we will live, but our decisions influence the next generation,good or bad.
How will we live, worshipping mankind?
Celebrities,Politicians,Pastors, Royal families,Ourselves’s, Our Children, Our Spouse, Our things?
Christ Jesus has set us free from this bondage, don’t fall back into it, don’t lead your families into bondage or others, let the light of Christ shine through our lives, choose life! So others will see that they to can be free.
We cannot do this in our power, we can only do this in the power of the Holy Spirit, we must seek His help and guidance each day.
Choose this day whom you will serve!
God’s word says this:
“Therefore, fear the Lord and worship Him in sincerity and truth. Get rid of the gods your fathers worshiped beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt, and worship Yahweh. But if it doesn’t please you to worship Yahweh, choose for yourselves today the one you will worship: the gods your fathers worshiped beyond the Euphrates River or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living. As for me and my family, we will worship Yahweh.” Joshua 24:14-15 HCSB