Be Adored!

And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ—to the glory and praise of God. Philippians 1:9, NIV

Who does not like to be adored? Every human I know likes to be loved, and sometimes we’ve gone overboard (okay, many times we’ve gone overboard!) trying to be loved by other humans.

Here’s a big clue: Mostly, humans adore themselves! And we learn to love. Yes, we have to LEARN to love, because we are each born with the sin nature of selfishness. As we grow and are taught correctly, we LEARN to replace that selfishness with love for God and others.

But here’s the real deal: Father God created us and loves us all anyway, since before He even made the world (and He made it perfectly!), and knew how we’d mess things up to be almost unfixable–BUT GOD. He sent Jesus to die for us and make things right again!

However, we have to CHOOSE to agree with Him, and receive Jesus as our Savior and LORD to be right with God!

We are, as humans that God (Elohim the Creator) made and gave life, already adored by Him! The only thing He hates is NOT us, but the sin that we’re all covered with–until and only when the Blood of the Lamb, Jesus Christ, washes it all away and gives us His covering of righteousness–which just means “being right with God.” (John 3:15-17, Romans 3, 5, 8 and 10; Isaiah 61).

Bottom line is, before we’re born, we are ADORED by our loving Creator, and even MORE when we receive Jesus, His Son, because then we become Jesus’s brother or sister, and part of God’s Royal Family!

God loves us whether we ever love Him back or not! And truly, He chose us so He could lavish His love on us! He already had all the angels in Heaven, but He created humans–and gave us a free will–so we could CHOOSE to love Him back and enjoy the most divine, sublime relationship possible! Knowing the LORD is truly Heaven on earth!

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. –Romans 5:8, NASB

So, having had my own struggles in trying to be loved or adored by other humans (which is really useless, because human nature changes quickly and even the people God puts in our lives are not perfect and won’t always love nor adore us the way we know we desire and deserve! Only GOD–Who knows allllll the yucky junk about us and loves us ANYway–can ever love us like we want! And we were created to both adore Him and be adored by Him!

Let’s pray! LORD, I want to know You more. I want to know Your Love more. Jesus, please come into my heart and fill me with Yourself, for You are Love! I want to adore You more and help others to know how You adore them. I thank You for Your amazing Love and help. In Jesus’ name, amen!

Embrace the New!

18 “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.
19 See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness
    and streams in the wasteland.
— Isaiah 43:18-19  (NIV)

To fully embrace the new, we must let go of the past. Why is that hard sometimes? We love the new things–but hurts and trouble from the past can be used by the enemy to try to dilute and discolor the wonderful new things the LORD is doing.

BUT GOD is our Help and our Shield, our Defender and Strength. When we ask Him, He loves to put His “super on our natural” and help us really get rid of the negatives, so we can enjoy all the positives!

God is a positive God, thank goodness! And Dr. Kenneth Copeland is quoted as stating that the LORD told him that, were it not for sin, He (the LORD) would never have a negative thought!

So, there are many reasons the LORD has to TELL us to forget the former things and to (on purpose!) set our minds on things above!

Sometimes the struggle to do this has surprised me, especially with all the teaching I’ve received through the years. And, it’s the struggle that we don’t like! In Heaven, there won’t be any struggle, and we’re not struggling with people, but within ourselves (usually, the root of the struggle is truly believing how much God has done for us and living it!) and with the (defeated, by the Blood of the Lamb, our testimony, and our knowledge of the Word and obedience to it!)

By the help of the LORD–repentance, forgiving others, prayyer, worship, reading and listening to and repeating aloud God’s Word, plus serving others and being an active part of a Bible-believing church–we can truly forget the past and set our minds on purpose to believe God and know that, for His kids, life just gets better! Amen and amen!

Let’s pray! Father, I want to enjoy all that Jesus died to give me–the wonderful John 10:10 life–the abundant Zoe life–and I need Your help! Show me how to get victory over everything that’s been holding me back, including hurts in my heart and other negative memories.

Help me to set me think about You continually, and to allow You to work in me and through me to help others know how very good You are, and that You are coming soon! Then I can enjoy the new things You are doing, and You will show me my part in them. Thank You, dear Father! I love You and thank You for loving me! In Jesus’ name, amen!

Stop Trying to Please Him!

“But I will give all my thanks to you, Lord, for you make everything right in the end. I will sing my highest praise to the God of the Highest Place!” –Psalm 7:17, TPT

8 “,…For it is by grace you have been saved through faith, and this not from yourselves; it is the gift of God, 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance as our way of life.… ” Ephesians 2:8-10, TPT

This week, I was seeking the LORD more intensely than usual. I’ve always been a go-getter, and have spent most of my life involved in several activities at once. That can be both good and bad.

Anyway, the second of these days of seeking, the LORD impressed me early that I’d worked too much the day before, and He wanted me to rest the second day. “Okay, but HOW do you want me to rest?” I asked Him. I was honestly confused for a few seconds–till I felt His gentle Spirit showing me that there was a root of performance pressure in that question! In my heart, I truly was searching for the most efficient way to rest!

What an irony! So that was wrong thinking, with a root of fear (of displeasing Him, of not being “efficient enough,” which is performance–which is FEAR. We do NOT have the spirit of fear, but power, love, and a sound mind, when we are God’s kids!)

I also realized hours later that procrastination is linked to performance pressure/perfectionism (fear), so I repented for all that, and asked the LORD to “replace the wicked (fear/perfectionism/performance pressure) with the righteous (deeper understanding of His love, and peace)! He did!

The LORD’s had to remind me often to REST during the years! And, like most of us, I’ve been guilty of thinking that, when I’m DOING a lot of things for the LORD, that that is acceptable to Him. Truly, He knows my heart IS to please and honor Him–and to let my Light shine so that all may be drawn to Him (Matthew 5:16). Amen.

However–just as I love my darling daughter (now, almost 23 and a college grad, plus about to be married in the spring!) am am PLEASED WITH HER, completely apart from her performance–so I was reminded that my Daddy God loves me. (And I’ve had good parents who loved me through thick and thin, no matter what.)

So we know that our loving Father God loves us and delights to give us what we ask when we are close to Him, because, as I John 3;21-23 says, “…21 Beloved, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God, 22 and we will received from Him whatever we ask ,because we keep His commandments and do what is pleasing in His sight. 23 And this is His commandment: that we should believe in the name of His Son, Jesus Christ, and we should love one another just as He commanded us.…: Berean Study Bible

So, if you’ve been like me–thinking God is mad at you, or at least irritated, or even disappointed or such (although we CAN grieve Him with our disobedience, like any rebellious child can grieve a parent)–then just say this prayer to the Father:

Father God, thank You that You have loved me since the moment You created me in my mother’s womb! And, from the moment I was born again by my faith in the blood of Jesus shed for me on the cross over 2,000 years ago, You have adopted me as Your child to lavish Your love on me–and You see me as perfect and flawless and righteous! My mind can’t understand that! But, just like I received Jesus in my heart by faith, I now choose to believe Your love for me–that You are pleased with me no matter what I do or don’t do (Your Grace!)–because I am Your beloved child! Please help me grow daily in a deeper understanding of Your faithful love! In Jesus’ Name, amen!

God’s Special Touch When My Wife Flew to Heaven

(This was shared with me by Bro. Jess Nicola, our Guest Contributor for today. What a special touch indeed! He shared it with me and I asked him for permission to share it with on our site! God is truly THE COOLEST!! –Tonja)

Brother Jess says: “The LORD supernaturally arranged for the release of balloons at Barbara’s funeral. There was symbolism in every part of the balloons; even in the way the ‘wind’ took them up at the close of the service:

28 white balloons; 29 balloons (adding Jess’ pink one); 30 balloons (adding Harley’s yellow one).

The number 28 is the biblical number for “eternal life”. The number 29 is the biblical number for “departure”. The number 30 is the biblical number for “dedication”.

The color white means: the bride; purity; surrender; holiness; righteousness; light; joy; angels; saints; peace; triumph; victory; festivity; salvation.

The color pink means: pure heart of flesh; Messiah; glory; His children.

The color yellow means: celebration; joy; Shekina Glory; memorial.

The color blue (the ribbon on Shane’s balloon) means: Heaven, Holy Spirit, grace and mercy.

When the balloons were released, all but three flew up and away. The pink, yellow, and one white balloon hung up in the tree next to the graveside. At the end of the song, “Fly to Jesus,” the yellow then the pink released from the tree and flew up and away.

One white balloon remained nestled in the tree. When the graveside service was over and Bro. Orville said “Amen,” and the family began to hug…That one single white balloon amazingly weaved its way through the branches of the tree and soared slowly, straight up, remaining in sight for a long time as the family was visiting and saying their goodbyes.

It was like Barbara stayed until everything was done–and then, “Flew to Jesus.”

“Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the LORD in the air; and sho shall we ever be with the LORD.” I Thessalonians 4:13-18

Acknowledge vs. Submit

I was listening to “Rivers in the Desert” Scriptures on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=imJZlhOsPKM&t=9031s (WOW at the magnificent waterfall!!) today, and although I have listened to them many times the past few months, I heard “submit” instead of “acknowledge.”

The verse (Proverbs 3:5 and 6) says, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not to your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.”

I had taken this to mean that, when we recognize (that’s what “acknowledge” meant to me) the LORD and thank Him for having directed us, and for directing us in the future (We can totally trust Him!) , then that opens the way for Him to direct our paths–because we are thankful and trust Him and want His direction.

All of this is good. However, when I heart the word “submit” I had a different thought, for to me, “submit” means bowing the knee; giving up my plans for His; doing things His way; and also, “putting it all on the altar” and being willing to give up whatever He wants to change–even if it is never restored.

So, today, Proverbs 3:5 and 6 took on even deeper meaning, and that’s the way the Word works–deepening Revelation, as we continue to sow His living Word into ourselves! So, with His help, I am truly submitting to Him in all my ways, and then, because I am willing to do whatever and change whatever and agree with Him, He is able to help me understand the straight Path for my life. Hallelujah!

Trust Him Totally

Trust in the Lord completely, and do not rely on your own opinions. With all your heart rely on him to guide you, and he will lead you in every decision you make. Become intimate with him in whatever you do, and he will lead you wherever you go.[a]  (Proverbs 3:6 Or “He will cut a straight path before you.”)

The Lord is with us always–even when we don’t feel like it! Thank goodness we don’t go by feelings!

This is a weird and sometimes trying time we’re in, as the LORD is shifting situations and people; rearranging us His own and bringing us into the most glorious Time ever–and what an honor that we get to be on planet earth in His will, partnering with the Most High to accomplish His Kingdom purpose!

Say this prayer to draw closer to the LORD and receive His help:

LORD, we ask You in Your gracious love and mercy to help us truly trust in You totally; to rest and rejoice, and know that, really, we are nothing without You and we can do nothing without You–yet we are Your precious children that You chose before the world was made to live now and love you and work with You. Hallelujah! We receive Your help! We love You, Father God!

He Will Help You

“In keeping with [the oath’s greater strength and force], Jesus has become the Guarantee of a better (stronger) agreement [a more excellent and more advantageous covenant]. 23 [Again, the former successive line of priests] was made up of many, because they were each prevented by death from continuing [perpetually in office]; 24 But He holds His priesthood unchangeably, because He lives on forever. 25 Therefore He is able also to save to the uttermost (completely, perfectly, finally, and for all time and eternity) those who come to God through Him, since He is always living to make petition to God and intercede with Him and intervene for them.”–Hebrews 7:22-25 (AMPC)

The LORD is so faithful! Thank Him that Jesus is alive and is constantly praying for us, that He sent the Holy Spirit to be with us always, and that He is ever aware of every moment of our lives–and sculpting them to do what’s best for us and bring glory to the LORD!

I’ve recently come through an emotionally tough season, and even though God is so good and faithful and there was really has not been any of what most people would call “disasters,” I’ve learned to rest more in the LORD and realize just how much care/worry/fear/doubt/unbelief I’ve had. YUCK!

So, praise the LORD, knowing something’s not right in my soul, I can ask Him to help me. I can ask Him to receive me and show me what I need to confess and be rid of. He will show me, then I can go to my High Priest, the LORD Jesus Christ, and ask His forgiveness for every word that I have spoken not in alignment with His Word–even every thought of my heart that has not been right–and receive His forgiveness and cleansing. There is nothing like it!

Then I can ask Him to help me find Scriptures and otherwise speak words in alignment with what He wants for my life–which is always the very, very best! He ever lives to help us–that is why He was born, crucified, rose again, and lives forever!

Ask Him today to help you. He delights in you, and helping you succeed–even if it’s different than you think it might be. Relax and trust His faithful, everlasting love!

Rest and Rejoice!

1 John 5:1,(AMPC), Everyone who believes (adheres to, trusts, and relies on the fact) that Jesus is the Christ (the Messiah) is a born-again child of God; and everyone who loves the Father also loves the one born of Him (His offspring),”

2 John 1:3 (AMPC), Grace (spiritual blessing), mercy, and [soul] peace will be with us, from God the Father and from Jesus Christ (the Messiah), the Father’s Son, in all sincerity (truth) and love. “

“The LORD is faithful to His Promises,” the Holy Spirit whispered to me one day, when I was tempted to worry about finances and situations.

YES, HE IS! Or none of us would be here! He gives us every breath, every GOOD thing–and our lives are FULL of good things!!!

He helps and blesses and protects the just and the unjust–those born again and those not–and it is His faithfulness and mercy that keeps us all alive and heals and delivers and guides and provides–He is our good, good God and the good, good Father to all who believe in Christ Jesus His Son (John 3:16)!

If you don’t know the LORD Jesus Christ–what are you waiting for? He is the BEST Fried you will ever have, and He IS the all-powerful One Who can do everything you need Him to! He is so very kind and loving and generous and faithful! He wants to help you have the very best life you possibly can–and that is ONLY possible with Jesus Christ the Savior and LORD!

He is Love. He is Peace. He is Health. He is Direction. He is Protection. He is Restoration. He is Victory. He is the living Word of God. He IS Rest and rejoicing! He is all you really want and need, for in Him is true freedom and abundant Life! (John 10:10)

And He makes it so easy to become His Forever Friend–just ask Him right now to forgive you of your wrongs and save you from evil and come into your heart and be your Life Guide and King! He will, and you will never be the same!

Victory At Every Step!

Who has roused up one [Cyrus] from the east, whom He calls in righteousness to His service and whom victory meets at every step?” (Isaiah 41:2, AMPC)

The steps of a [good] man are directed and established by the Lord when He delights in his way [and He busies Himself with his every step]”. –Psalm 37:23, AMPC

We trust in Him with all our hearts and lean not to our own understanding. In all our ways we acknowledge Him, and He directs our paths, says Proverbs 3:5,6.

These are just a few of proofs from the unchanging, infallible, eternal Word of God that, as we do our best to follow our darling dynamite Daddy God, we are always at the right place and the right time! If we are not and got off track innocently (and we only see in part and know in part while on this earth), our Father God’s mercy is so great that He covers us and protects us from harm and gets us back on track. HE IS SO GOOD!

So, as I heard Dr. Chuck Swindoll say years ago (from what I remember), “There is no accident in the life of a child of God.”

Our Father through His Holy Spirit (the Spirit of Truth) and His angels are always watching over us, inspiring us to good works, and leading us in right paths.

The LORD always leads us to read and listen to and speak His Word, and if what is happening in our lives does not line up with the Word, it is NOT God, and it will NOT bring victory. God’s Plan and Word ALWAYS brings Victory! It may not happen today, but IT WILL HAPPEN!

Keep the faith. Do what you know to do. Honor God in every part of your life, and realize that, if you have Jesus Christ, YOU ALREADY HAVE THE VICTORY!

Your Holy Health – Part II

In this humorous excerpt from my book, Happy Health, which I re-titled Your Holy Health, you will find a few tips–including laughter–to better health. (After all, the LORD says in that “A merry heart doeth good like a medicine” (Proverbs 17:22, KJV). Medical science has, of course, proven that God is right. They are beginning to catch up with the ancient Truth, Hallelujah!)

Worrier or Warrior?

Psalm 62:6, TPT For he alone is my safe place. His wrap-around presence always protects me as my champion defender. There’s no risk of failure with God! So why would I let worry paralyze me, even when troubles multiply around me?”

Proverbs 19:17, TPT, Every time you give to the poor you make a loan to the Lord. Don’t worry—you’ll be repaid in full for all the good you’ve done.”

Matthew 6:26, TPTLook at all the birds—do you think they worry about their existence? They don’t plant or reap or store up food, yet your heavenly Father provides them each with food. Aren’t you much more valuable to your Father than they?”

“Worrier or Warrior?” my dear husband said to me the other day. “We have to make a choice.”

Which are you?’ If you depend on yourself and the world (and even, sometimes, other people, who are prone to error sooner or later), you are a worrier. But if you do Proverbs 3:5 and 6: “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not to your own understanding, but in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths,” then you are a Warrior.

Trusting in the goodness and faithfulness of our INfallible (NOT capable of making a mistake!) Father God and His Son, the LORD Jesus Christ, makes us Warriors. As my pastor, Apostle Tracy Harris, states, “Peace is a force.”

When we keep our minds on Him, He keeps us in peace. When we choose to rejoice and praise God in the middle of junk, He sets an ambush against the enemy, and works victory on our behalf.

GOD IS FOR US and NONE can be against us and succeed! Let us remember, if GOD is for us–and He IS, if we have accepted His Son, Jesus Christ–then NONE can be against us for long. WE WIN!

A Dancer After His Own Heart

Psalm 30:11 (TPT), “Then he broke through and transformed all my wailing into a whirling dance of ecstatic praise! He has torn the veil and lifted from me the sad heaviness of mourning. He wrapped me in the glory garments of gladness.”

Psalm 63:11 (TPT), These liars will be silenced forever! But with the anointing of a king I will dance and rejoice along with all his lovers who trust in him.”

Psalm 87:7 (TPT), “And the princes of God’s feasts will sing and dance, singing, “Every fountain of delight springs up from your life within me!”

When I was growing up decades ago and watching television at home, I wanted to be a dancer like those on “Solid Gold.” Or so I thought. To me, they were lovely and graceful. That seemed like power–especially to a skinny shy girl who too often felt afraid.

Now I know, of course, that those dancers were doing sensuous moves to worldly, soul-disturbing sounds.

But the LORD is faithful–the more I came to know His Word and love Him, the more I could not help but just get up and rejoice–and dance! And it grew from there. I started exploring praise and worship dance, and made some flags and would practice in the living room. But I wanted more.

I wanted to touch His heart. I wanted to make my moves a prayer.

One day I was literally doing praise and worship to the LORD, and the thought to look up “prophetic dance” came into my mind. I discovered Apostle Lynn Hayden, of Dancing For Him Ministries, and was privileged to be taught by her for a the first year of her praise and worship school. She helped me go much deeper in my understanding and appreciation of the power of movement to the glory of God.

When at the conference, I was required to dance, and I wasn’t sure what I would do. I couldn’t seem to choreograph anything, so i just prayed and trusted the LORD to literally move me. He did! (But of course!) I was the last one to dance, and I had chosen a fast song by Danny Chambers, called, “The LORD Reigns.” It seemed like all I did was whirl–dance in circles–and I started clapping, and the crowd quickly joined in. I grabbed my Bible and held it up, and it was powerful. Glory to God!

Although I didn’t understand it fully then, this verse is what He did for me (among other things!): Psalm 30:11 (TPT), “Then he broke through and transformed all my wailing into a whirling dance of ecstatic praise! He has torn the veil and lifted from me the sad heaviness of mourning. He wrapped me in the glory garments of gladness.”

The LORD is the One Who invented dancing. In fact, certain authorities on the Bible say He loved to go to feasts and parties where there was dancing. If you haven’t danced, or even if you have, ask Him to make you freer. Throw off others’ opinions and dance to the LORD. It will please Him and He will work on your behalf in ways that may surprise you!

This night, after I danced to my LORD, He whispered, “You are, after all, a dancer after My own heart.” And that, my friend, is everything!

Thrust Comes With Trust

(This writing was inspired by Clayton, who spoke this phrase, “Trust comes with trust,” to me. Love you, Dynamite Darling!)

“This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it. And why? Because of that person’s failure to believe in the one-of-a-kind Son of God when introduced to him.”– John 3:17,MSG

Proverbs 3:5-6 Wisdom’s Guidance ] “Trust in the Lord completely, and do not rely on your own opinions. With all your heart rely on him to guide you, and he will lead you in every decision you make. Become intimate with him in whatever you do, and he will lead you wherever you go.”

This is the theme verse for our marriage–it has popped up from many ministers and ministries or other occasions when we’ve needed to make decisions and have been ‘spinning” about it. Of course we don’t want to grieve the LORD; we do not want to be deceived. It takes faith to trust in the LORD–and we’ve discovered it also takes faith to, as Apostle Tracy Harris, our dear pastor, states, “have faith in your faith”.

In other words, when we ask the LORD to guide us, we release our faith–we trust–that He does, then we must trust ourselves to be led by Him. So when we trust Him, and that we will be led by our Good Shepherd because we want to be and asked Him to, then we can thrust forward in getting Kingdom work done.

“Thrust comes with trust,” said my Darling Dynamite Husband, Clayton, a few months ago. “You have to trust the vehicle, the messenger–the LORD–to get you through.”

I agree with him. In fact, I wrote it down. Much revelation comes from this mighty man of God who is continually in the Word–reading it, watching it, listening to it, every day; and serving on the praise and worship team, running the camera, and doing whatever else needs to be done at our church. He does the same in this marriage and family and at every position he holds. He thrusts Godly excellence into every realm of his life, every day.

There are not many men like him! I am very blessed to be his wife, and I know the LORD has great things for him! Clayton has helped me learn (with God helping me) to trust, to love and receive love. True love is a phenomenal thing, and when one trusts the love of God, one can love others and thrust forward in life.

Growing in trust–in faith–to thrust forward in God’s will, is a lifelong process. One thing that really helps me is talking to God (prayers); also remembering God’s faithfulness and focusing my life on the Word; reading it daily; speaking it; listening to and watching programs about the Word. I ask the LORD to make me God-conscious. Just look back over your life and realize that every good things–even every breath–is a gift to you from our faithful Covenant God.

Forever He is faithful; totally trustworthy. He cannot be unfaithful and He’s always got your back. So trust Him and thrust forward into Zoe life! (John 10:10).

Joy Ride!

Galatians 5:22-23 TPT)
But the fruit produced by the Holy Spirit within you is divine love in all its varied expressions: joy  “that overflows, peace that subdues, patience that endures, kindness in action, a life full of virtue, faith that prevails, gentleness of heart, and strength of spirit. Never set the law above these qualities, for they are meant to be limitless.”

Psalm 5:12 (TPT), “Lord, how wonderfully you bless the righteous. Your favor wraps around each one and covers them under your canopy of kindness and joy.”

Psalm 9:2 (TPT), I will jump for joy and shout in triumph as I sing your song and make music for the Most High God.”

Psalm 13:5 (TPT), Lord, I have always trusted in your kindness, so answer me. I will yet celebrate with passion and joy when your salvation lifts me up.”

Psalm 16:9 (TPT), My heart and soul explode with joy—full of glory! Even my body will rest confident and secure.”

Psalm 19:8 (TPT), “His teachings make us joyful and radiate his light; his precepts are so pure! His commands, how they challenge us to keep close to his heart! The revelation-light of his word makes my spirit shine radiant.”

Psalm 25:8 (TPT), “When people turn to you, they discover how easy you are to please—so faithful and true! Joyfully you teach them the proper path, even when they go astray.”

Wow, I just had a “Joy Ride” (NOT stealing cars, of course (Where did they get that? Silly people!))! And you can have it too!

A TRUE Joy Ride is what I call a great time in the LORD–usually while I drive, windows down and hair blowing freely, singing and praying in the Spirit, and just rejoicing in HOW GOOD GOD IS!!!), while doing a search on these Scriptures and reading them to post! It has been hard not to list all 250 that came up (Search for yourself in www.BibleGateway.com!), but there is one more that came to mind —

3 John 1:4 (TPT): “It is the greatest joy of my life to hear that my children are consistently living their lives in the ways of truth!”

Another thing: I’m not just talking about our joy, but the joy of the Father God Who delights in us when we seek and serve Him. He gets pleasure out of ours. He is glad when we believe and receive and enjoy all that Jesus His Son died to give us (John 3;15-17, John 10:10; Eph. 3:20)!

Rejoice in the LORD always–if you are feeling down, just start asking the LORD to help you remember all the good things He has done for you, and you will start feeling better in no time! There is power in joy. Things may have gone wrong–but let us remember ALL that has gone right! And the LORD is so good; He is continually protecting us from much harm, that we may never realize till Heaven! (If you do these things and are still “down,” then you need to seek pastoral help, or help from a counselor whom you are sure is a Believer in the LORD Jesus Christ! There may be deep-rooted issues from which you need deliverance. Ask me how I know!)

“And it’s true: “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord Yahweh
    will be rescued and experience new life.”
(Romans 10:13, TPT)

– Ask the LORD Jesus to reveal Himself to you today! You need the New Life of Joy, and Jesus is Joy! Trust me, when you side with Him, you will begin the greatest Joy Ride of your life!!

The Winning Coach

Jesus is the ultimate winning Coach–and the Bible is the ultimate “Play Book”!

“The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.” Zephaniah 3:1,NIV

1 Timothy 2:2 (TPT), And pray for every political leader and representative, so that we would be able to live tranquil, undisturbed lives, as we worship the awe-inspiring God with pure hearts.”

“Life is simple unless you make it hard,” the LORD told me months ago. He is our fearless Leader, our Good Shepherd, our all-knowing Coach Who always has the Strategy for victory! His Strategies always and forever will come from the Word of God, the Book!

He is our Good Shepherd Who always leads us in right paths, for our best and His glory. He is good, good, good, and only good, and will never lead us wrong.

In other words, if we follow Him, we will win–every time. Circumstances and the enemy’s lies may may it seem like we are not winning, but the LORD is the Master of turning messes into miracles; ask me how I know!

17 Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel, “I am the Lord your God, who teaches you to profit, Who leads you in the way you should go. 18 “If only you had paid attention to My commandments! Then your [h]well-being would have been like a river, And your righteousness like the waves of the sea.” (Isa 48:17,18 NASB)

We need coaches. Some call them mentors, or spiritual mothers or fathers. There are differences that technically distinguish those roles from one another. But we can know this: Jesus is the Winning Coach, and if we listen to Him–through prayer (which sometimes involves just listening!), reading His Word, worshiping Him, making corrections as He leads us to, and otherwise doing what we know He is leading us to do, we win too! Jesus the LORD will never–and I mean never–coach us to do anything that does not align with His Word, for He and His Word are One!

This article forwarded to me by Larry from JesusOnline.com (a cornucopia of resources to teach you how to know and love Christ!) will serve as a vessel through which The Coach Himself will speak to you–simply and effectively, to help you win! https://jesusonline.com/keeping-an-eternal-perspective-in-a-temporal-world/

Check it out!  

P.O.W.E.R.* Girl Creed

Calling all P.O.W.E.R.* (Purposeful Operations With Eternal Rewards) Girls! Check out this Creed to see if you are a true P.O.W.E.R.* Princess!

As a Princess of P.O.W.E.R.*, I believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, Who is the Son of God, the Savior of the world, and the righteous King of the universe. He was born of the virgin Mary (Matthew 1:18-25), lived a perfect and sinless  life on earth 33 years (Hebrews 4:15), preached and taught and loved all humanity (Luke 1:1), was crucified  for the sins of the world, died, was buried, and rose again the third day to live forever (John 3:16).

I believe Jesus appeared in bodily form to many on earth after His resurrection (Acts 1:3), then ascended to Heaven (Acts 1:10) where He sits at the right hand of God the Father (Acts 2:33) and continuously intercedes (prays) for us (I Tim. 3:16, Heb. 5:5, Heb. 7:26).

I believe He is coming again soon as the King of Kings and Lord of Lords, to  gather to Himself those who have asked forgiveness for their sins and accepted Him into their hearts (John 14:28, Acts 1:11).

As a Princess of P.O.W.E.R.*, I agree to do these things:

  • Read my Bible daily, thank God for it, memorize it, speak it, and share with others what God teaches me from it!

(Suggestion: Read a Psalm and a chapter in Proverbs every day and take notes. John is also a very good book to read, about the Love of God. You will be amazed at what the LORD will show you, and certain verses will jump out at you and become very POWERful in your life! But if He leads you to read other places in the Word, that is great, for He is leading you by His Spirit. Go for it!)

  • Invite my dear Father God to be involved in every part of my day and my life
  • Thank Him every day for all the wonderful things He does for me
  • Listen often to music that glorifies Him, and sing along and regularly attend a Bible-believing church and other Christian activities
  • Ask God how to use my gifts, talents, strengths, opportunities, dreams and possessions to advance the Kingdom of God – for everything I have is His
  • Live my life in a way worthy of one who believes in Jesus by not doing things I know are against God’s Word
  • Encourage other young princesses to dare to know King Jesus, read His Word, and become a POWER Princess

If you agree, please print this agreement and sign it, and put it where you can see it daily!

_______________________________________________________________ sign your name, and the date, P.O.W.E.R.* Princess!

“For the kingdom of God consists of and is based on not talk but power (moral power and excellence of soul).” –I Corinthians 4;20, AMPC

GOD BLESS YOU, Princess of P.O.W.E.R.*–Purposeful Operations With Eternal Rewards! Now GO FORTH and CONQUER, for The KING is with you!  (Matthew 28:19,20)

Spill Your Guts and Rest

Psalm 34:18 (MSG) says, “If your heart is broken, you’ll find God right there; if you’re kicked in the gut, he’ll help you catch your breath.”

 Here’s the same verse in The Passion Translation (TPT): “The Lord is close to all whose hearts are crushed by pain, and he is always ready to restore the repentant one.”

I’ll take both of those. I’ve been both–kicked in the gut (even by those very close to me, including leaders from whom I least expected such!), and repentant. It has amazed me how, even though I felt totally like I was the one to whom others should repent–that the LORD had me be the “bigger man” and approach others first to apologize for “being rude” or “whatever you think I’ve done wrong.” It usually took Him a couple days to get me to agree with Him, but He knows all things and I’m sure that was part of my overcoming healing process!

If anyone knows what it feels like to be “kicked in the gut” emotionally, and betrayed by leaders and those closest to Him, it’s Jesus! Even though the Disciples spent three years with Him, there were still many things recorded that He told them that they just didn’t get. I doubt He “spilled His guts” to anyone but the Father–especially since He only did what Father God told Him to say (John 12:49).

Don’t we feel better when we “tell all”? Sometimes–many times–it’s flesh, our carnal nature, just wanting the satisfaction of talking negatively about someone or something. It’s a kind of “vindication,” even if we don’t do or say anything directly to that person.

And it’s hard not to do that, especially when we feel righteous indignation, and have no idea of what we did or may have done wrong. I’ve gotten much better through the years about not sharing all the junk with anyone, not even my spouse (although he is a good and patient and understanding listener), for it really doesn’t do much but drag us both down. It doesn’t solve the problem.

Also, as sometimes has also happened, more offense can occur, which can create more problems!

The LORD tells us to set our mind on things above–good things–for a reason. He knows us better than we know ourselves!

And, He tells us in Psalm 62:8 (ESV) to “Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us. Selah.” 

Jesus has experienced every emotion, rejection, and torment that anyone ever has or will experience, so He totally understands. So “spill your guts” to Him, and He will comfort you in amazing ways. Trust in Him (Proverbs 3:5-6) to work everything out for your best and His glory, and He will. Ask Him to help you relax in His faithful love!

Fear For Life

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27 Reverent and worshipful fear of the Lord is a fountain of life, that one may avoid the snares of death.Proverbs 14:27, AMPC

I was meditating on Proverbs 14 this evening after work, and realized afresh that, as I’ve been drawing closer to the LORD and trusting–and truly resting–in Him, while living a consecrated life as much as possible, that I have been enjoying more Zoe. This is the abundant life that Jesus speaks of in John 10:10.

God’s original Plan was for us to have perfect life, Heavenly life, with constant sublime companionship and communication with Him; unbroken fellowship. Sin corrupted that, but Jesus won it back. On earth, we have to relearn what we already would have known–that experiencing His Presence, His Word, His Spirit, is the ultimate satisfaction and joy, the whole purpose of man. (I John 2:29, I John 3:7)

So He Who has known us from before time was is helping us to know Him, to draw near, to relish and receive the revelation of His wonderful, incorruptible, eternal, unchanging Truth!

King Jesus–the Covenant of Yahweh!–is returning soon to reward those faithful to Him, those who truly fear the LORD by reverencing, respecting, and worshiping Him in obedience to His living Word.

Will you be found by Him?

Revelation 22:7, AMPC (Jesus says) And behold, I am coming speedily. Blessed (happy and to be envied) is he who observes and lays to heart and keeps the truths of the prophecy (the predictions, consolations, and warnings) contained in this [little] book.

James 1:18, AMPC  And it was of His own [free] will that He gave us birth [as sons] by [His] Word of Truth, so that we should be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures [a sample of what He created to be consecrated to Himself].

Hebrews 11:16, AMPC But the truth is that they were yearning for and aspiring to a better and more desirable country, that is, a heavenly [one]. For that reason God is not ashamed to be called their God [even to be surnamed their God—the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob], for He has prepared a city for them.

The Christmas Surprise

James 5:16 : Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working. (ESV)

I had planned a very quiet Christmas, with just my Beloved and myself, sleeping in, exchanging gifts, and having time to rest and do other things I wanted to do today.

But the enemy had other plans. He loves to try to steal our joy and interrupt our peace. Clayton and I were dreaming deeply last night when there was a loud pounding on our door. My darling daughter had stopped by to tell me my dear mom, a widow less than two years ago, who’d suffered many afflictions, was once again in the hospital. Somehow we’d been unable to hear the phone.

Mom had fallen and fractured her hip and pelvis, even though a caretaker was with her 24/7. Bless her heart! The ambulance had rushed her on Christmas Eve to the hospital, and there she lay. So I was up at different times during the night checking on her.

However, God is never taken by surprise! What the enemy means for evil, the LORD Who knows all things always works for good for us who love Him and are the called according to His Plan.

This morning, I rose and made her some delicious peanut butter balls that she likes, determined to go bring her some cheer on this Christmas Day.  As the LORD often does, I figured He might have other things in mind too, and I knew there were hurting people everywhere at the hospital. So I took a Christian magazine, some Jesus’ Christmas Tree bookmarks (JCT bookmark_TKTaylor ), and an invitation to our church New Year’s Eve service. I asked Him to show me whom to sow them to.

Mom let me pray for her but was hurting too much to read the magazine and even had me take her treats back home till later. I spent some time helping her, then felt led to visit the ICU floor, where my Dad had died less than two years before, and where I’d spent a long month with Mom before that.

As I entered the ICU waiting room, there was one man there, asleep. I quietly left the materials, then went to the bathroom across the hall. The LORD impressed me to ask the man if he needed prayer. He woke and said, ‘Sure!” I told him my husband and I were lay ministers and he said he was a local pastor too, and was there for his mom. He gave me details of her afflictions and he and I prayed together.  I told him at the end that I expect a good report, even if I don’t know about it till Heaven!

Then I handed him theinvitation to our church’s NYE service, which is the 29th this year. Perhaps he and his family will come. Anyway, I know this was the LORD–and it was His surprise gift to me. Later that day, I received some delightful and very thoughtful gifts from my Beloved husband. However, the gift of the LORD directing me to be a vessel through whom the LORD ministered to my dear mom and the pastor and his family was the very best gift of all!

Ask the LORD how you can receive more of the priceless gift of being a vessel through whom He works to bless others this Season that we celebrate the living Christ!

For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?”

Choose Joy

22 But the fruit of the [Holy] Spirit [the work which His presence within accomplishes] is love, joy (gladness), peace, patience (an even temper, forbearance), kindness, goodness (benevolence), faithfulness, 23 Gentleness (meekness, humility), self-control (self-restraint, continence). Against such things there is no law [[a]that can bring a charge]. —Gal. 5:22-23, (AMPC)

“It’s joy!” I said, and laughed gently some more, watching my sweet fourth grade students giggle and look around at each other, delightfully confused. They had just come into my afternoon  class, and some started laughing for no apparent reason.  I could tell that they were not trying to be disruptive, nor were they scorning one another–I just let the LORD have His wonderful way!

Happy tears  came to my eyes also, and they noticed. “Look at Mrs. Taylor! Her face is red!”

Indeed it was, and I my heart felt so good. I could not stop smiling, and the kids smiled back.

As I’ve told them, we feel better when we smile. We get more oxygen, and it’s just so much better than a frown!

Part of my joy was thankfulness;  it is so wonderful to have the Presence of God with us always!

Many of us laughed gently a few minutes, then they started to settle down.

“What is joy?”one asked.

I love it when Daddy opens doors like this!

“It’s part of God,” I said. “A fruit of the Spirit!”

“Oh!” he said, and smiled. A few had not laughed, and my heart ached for them to experience the freedom and lightness that comes when the true Spirit of Joy, the LORD Jesus Christ, rises among us.

Truly, this Season, we have so much to be joyful about. Let us sing for joy to the One Who is faithful forever, for He died so we could live with joy!

Sing for joy, O heavens, and be joyful, O earth, and break forth into singing, O mountains! For the Lord has comforted His people and will have compassion upon His afflicted.
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth; break forth and sing for joy, yes, sing praises!