LEGACY: Crafting Your Child’s Future With Words

“Speak the Word (of God) only”–Amen!

The Roman centurion–a man without a covenant with God, a man of the “anti-Christ” people group in that day–understood the authority and power of speech, and Jesus marveled when he heard the man say, “Just speak the word, and my servant will be healed.” (Matthew 8:8, my paraphrase). The man obviously had faith in the authority of Jesus, even if he did not believe in Jesus Himself. But our LORD Jesus honored that faith!

The LORD honors our faith, and He honors His Word. When we have faith in His Word and speak it, His angels go to work to make it happen–because the King Himself backs up His Word.

Years ago, the LORD instructed me to teach a 6-week class on the power of speaking the Word of God over one’s children, and I did. The book, LEGACY: Crafting Your Child’s Future With Words came out of that class.

It is available here for you free, as a PDF, when you write Power@RiverRainCreative.com. Please feel free to share it, as long as it remains in PDF form, unchanged. May it be a P.O.W.E.R.* tool (Purposeful Operations With Eternal Rewards) to shape the lives of your children (and yourself and all over whom you speak the Word!) for Christ!

It Just Gets Better

Oh, how great is Your goodness, which You have laid up for those who fear, revere, and worship You, goodness which You have wrought for those who trust and take refuge in You before the sons of men!”         –Psalm 31:19

As one preacher we listen to says, “It (God’s goodness) just gets gooder and gooder!”

As he (Brother Dave, on www.moorelife.org) knows, that may be bad English, but it’s so true!

God is GOOD. ALL good. I am continually amazed at His goodness–even to me while I was doing many things against Him (some I knew about, some I didn’t, but I was still doing them. He is so merciful!)

There is NO evil in Him, nor does He cause evil. He is holy. He is righteous. He is true–He is Truth!

But you don’t have to take my word for it. Take His!

God is up to any challenge you can make. He can handle it. He–Jesus Christ–IS “The Man”!

Thank God He DID come as a man–so He could experience all the junk you and I will ever go through, and then pay for it–so we could go FREE!

Call to Him to make Himself known to you today. He will!

My Faithful Father

“The same way a loving father feels toward his children— that’s but a sample of your tender feelings toward us, your beloved children, who live in awe of you” .Psalm 103:13  TPT

“But Lord, your endless love stretches from one eternity to the other, unbroken and relenting toward those who fear you and those who bow facedown in awe before you. Your faithfulness to keep every gracious promise you’ve made
passes from parents, to children, to grandchildren, and beyond.” 
Psalm 103:17, TPT

God is so very good! Every breath is from Him. Every good thing is from Him. He is good to all, even though so many people will never acknowledge His goodness, and many even curse and blaspheme them. Yet He has made the way for them to be free and go to Paradise with Him forever–if they will just agree.

Our dear pastor, Apostle Tracy Harris, said today that the highest title of our Creator is “Father.” I agree. Our congregation sang “Good, Good Father” a capella–and it was powerful.

He reminded us that, in Luke 15, when the prodigal son took his inheritance and left to waste it, then decided, in his shame, to return to his father and ask to be a hired servant so at least he would have food to eat, that the father (who’d been watching every day for him to return!) ran to meet him. He cleaned him up, put a royal robe on him, and threw him a party.

The father didn’t even talk to him about his sordid past. He had forgiven his son even before he left home–because he loved his son. No matter what wrong his son did, he would always be his beloved son.

That is like the gift of righteousness that the LORD our Father gave us when He sent Jesus to die on the cross to pay for all our sins, and rise again to give us new life (John 3:16).

God the Father chose to forgive us before we were ever born–knowing that every human is born into sin, because of the treason of Adam, when he agreed with the devil against the word of God (Genesis). He provided Jesus, the New Covenant, Who took all the curse–all the wrong, all the sin, all the junk–and made it so that anyone who agreed that they needed the power of Jesus’ cleansing blood could be free, and not have to pay the eternal penalty for their sins.

But God’s goodness doesn’t stop there! Not only does every person who agrees to come into partnership with God’s Son Jesus become pardoned forever from their sin, but also gets the current protection and supply, friendship, and healing, that only these adopted children of God are rightfully due! In addition–and best of all–there is the eternal life of the spirit in Heaven with God and Jesus forever, after the body dies!

The LORD our Father (once we receive Jesus as our Savior and LORD) is so good, and we can know Him personally. Wow.

We love You, Daddy God, Abba Father, and we bless Your holy Name forever!

Better Than Elvis and Barbie Together!

“But Lord, your endless love stretches from one eternity to the other, unbroken and unrelenting toward those who fear you and those who bow face down in awe before you. Your faithfulness to keep every gracious promise you’ve made passes from parents, to children, to grandchildren, and beyond. You are faithful to all those who follow your ways and keep your word.” Psalm 103:17-18, TPT

I remember growing up (a few decades ago) and having Barbie dolls. Barbie could do anything and be anything, and I thought that was cool; a Big Deal.

I also remember my mom and many others–even today–making a Big Deal about Elvis. He had a nice voice, but he wasn’t that big of a deal to me, probably because of the type of character he usually played–more of a fake, which is a Big Deal to me.

Anyway it occurred to me that Jesus is even better than these two put together! There is no real comparison, of course, because Jesus–unlike the other two, is real. He is the Real Deal, which is a Big Deal.

Aren’t we all (at least secretly!) looking for The Real Deal?

Jesus is a real Man, and the true God, and His character is never in question. He helps us choose Him (the true Life) and then He rewards us for doing so!

Unlike Elvis and Barbie, He is omnipresent (everywhere at once), omniscient (all-knowing), and omnipotent (all-powerful)–except for one thing: He has chosen to give us humans a free will, and He will not override it (Deuteronomy 30:15-20). That is a Big Deal.

We can even choose to go to hell (literally, after our bodies die, forever!), but why would we do that? Jesus is everything we want and need!

” …11And this is that testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12WhoeverhastheSonhaslife;whoeverdoes not havetheSonof Goddoes not havelife.13I have written these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, so that you may know that you have eternal life.” (I John 5:11-13, Berean Study Bible)

Revelation 1:18 (TPT), (Jesus is) “…the Living One! I was dead, but now look—I Am alive forever and ever. And I hold the keys that unlock death and the unseen world.” 

Ah the unseen world; far more fascinating–and real–than the seen!

And Jesus is LORD of both!

Revelation 21:6 (TPT), Then he said to me, “It has been accomplished! For I Am the Aleph and the Tav, the beginning and the end. I will give water to all who are thirsty. As my gracious gift, they will continuously drink from the fountain of living water.”

Elvis and Barbie and all the superheroes in the movies together could never compare with Christ, the Living God. He, King Jesus, is returning soon, so why wouldn’t you side with Him, the Victorious, Glorious One Who gave you life?

Revelation 22:12 (TPT),  Jesus’ Final Words and John’s Final Testimony ] “Behold, I Am coming quickly! I bring my reward with me to repay everyone according to their works.”

You can depend on Christ Jesus–Who is the Big Deal, and Who is the Real Deal. tAsk Him to help you today. He will!  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)”

It’s Available Now!

“2 Corinthians 6:2,” (TPT), “For he says, I listened to you at the time of my favor. And the day when you needed salvation, I came to your aid. So can’t you see? Now is the time to respond to his favor! Now is the day of salvation!”

“The funds will be available tomorrow, right?” I asked the bank clerk. She smiled. “It’s available now,” she said. “Immediately.”

“Now? Today?” I was surprised, and pleased. But it made sense. It was, after all, my money, and it should be available immediately for me to do with what I wanted. Just because I gave it to someone else to hold did not mean I had to wait to use it.

And so it is with the Blessings of my Covenant with God, I reasoned to myself. (Reasoning can be a trap, and against the truth of God, if it goes against what the Word said. But the LORD also says, in Isaiah 1:18 (ESV),
“Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.”

Jesus is ready now to help you. He has been ready for over 2,000 years (John 3:15-17), when He came to be born of a virgin, live on earth, die on the cross to pay for all we humans did wrong, and to rise again after three days–all to give us an amazing, abundant, satisfying, wealthy life (John 10;10)! Call out to Him in earnest, and He will answer (Isa. 65:24, Romans 10:13). Then you will start the greatest adventure of your life!

He’s Got Your Back

Psalm 66:9 (TPT), “There’s no doubt about it; God holds our lives safely in his hands. He’s the one who keeps us faithfully following him.”

Psalm 12:6, (TPT), For every word God speaks is sure and every promise pure. His truth is tested, found to be flawless, and ever faithful. It’s as pure as silver refined seven times in a crucible of clay.”

Psalm 37:3 (TPT), Keep trusting in the Lord and do what is right in his eyes. Fix your heart on the promises of God and you will be secure, feasting on his faithfulness.”

Psalm 69:13 (TPT), “But I keep calling out to you, Yahweh! I know you will bend down to listen to me, for now is the season of favor. Because of your faithfullove for me, your answer to my prayer will be my sure salvation.”

There is a God, and He is real, and awesome, and good! He is forever faithful, and that’s why we each have life. That’s why the world keeps turning. That’s why there is beauty. He gives us every breath.

And while He protects us from so much every day–things that would try to destroy us that we don’t even see–our choices also affect things. But He is a good Father that teaches us what is best, if we will just listen to Him. He loves us so much He sacrificed His only Son, Jesus, so we would go free and have an amazing, prosperous life (John 3:15-17, John 10:10)!

But you don’t have to believe me. Get a Bible and ask the LORD if He’s real. Ask Him to reveal Himself to you. He will! And then, you’ll be in for the most exciting adventure you’ve ever known!

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!!

Stirred to Give More

Psalm 9:4 (TPT), “For you have stood up for my cause and vindicated me when I needed you the most. From your righteous throne you have given me justice.”

Psalm 20:6 (TPT), I know God gives me all that I ask for and brings victory to his anointed king. My deliverance cry will be heard in his holy heaven. By his mighty hand miracles will manifest through his saving strength.”

2 Corinthians 8:10, 11 TPT), “So here are my thoughts concerning this matter, and it’s in your best interests. Since you made such a good start last year, both in the grace of giving and in your longing to give, you should finish what you started. You were so eager in your intentions to give, so go do it. Finish this act of worship according to your ability to give.”

John 1;16, AMPC, “For out of His fullness (abundance) we have all received [all had a share and we were all supplied with] one grace after another and spiritual blessing upon spiritual blessing and even favor upon favor and gift [heaped] upon gift.”

“Giving is God-like,” I heard one minister say years ago. I agree. When we give, it is Love Himself flowing through us!

This morning, I was studying for an exam, but I kept thinking of my friend, whom I’d just discovered had many needs. She’d been in my church for months, and I knew she was a single mom, a cancer survivor, and not on top of the world, so to speak. She had made me an exquisite necklace for Mother’s Day, and I treasured it. But I didn’t know the hardships she’d been experiencing. When we were able to finally spend time together, I learned and close to finishing her degree in art, but she’d also shared with me that the LORD had told her to slow down, take less classes, and spend more time with Him.

I could identify with some of her challenges and struggles. It had been along hard road, but the LORD had brought me far from the past and I had started living in the Blessing of the LORD. That is His Plan for all people, and we who are His kids are promised that Life (John 10:10) when we do things His way. He loved us all so much that He gave the Best of Heaven–Jesus the Christ, God’s only Son–so we could live the “above and beyond” life. All we have to do is learn His Word and listen to Him. He is such a loving, giving Father, and so patient and kind and merciful. He wants us to succeed and enjoy what He gave!

Several times, I tried to overcome distraction today and study, but thoughts of my friend and what I could give would not go away. I got up and gathered a few household goods. “Thank You, LORD, You have given us soooooo much! Thank You that we have something to give! Thank You LORD for giving me generous parents who taught me to give!” I told Him. So I gathered a few things and put them by my purse, intending to take them to her tomorrow.

I tried to study again, and after about four rounds of this, I kept being stirred to give more. So I rose to gather more and more things that He showed me to give her–with the joy increasing–I finally just texted her and told her I was bringing it today. I did, and she and her son were thankful. I gave her quite a bit of stuff, but I really wanted to give more! It is the heart of God to give, and He answers that cry of our hearts to help us be like Him.

After that, I just spent some time worshiping and thanking the LORD, and praying in the Spirit. It was a lovely day–and made more lovely by the fact that I allowed the LORD to give through me! Okay, finally, I will be able to concentrate, I thought, and sat down at my desk.

I have been overwhelmed many times realizing that Christ has given me so much–and that billions (with a B!) of people through the earth would love to experience just one day, just one part of my abundant life! I don’t mean I live in a mansion nor drive a Lamborghini (yet, anyway), but I have so many priceless things money can never buy–because the LORD our God was so faithful and loving to give Jesus His Son for me, and for you, and for all who will just agree with Him.

My search of “give” in The Passion Translation (TPT) revealed 618 verses–more about how God gives to us that we give to Him or others. But to experience the highest reward in life, ask the LORD to show you how to give (Acts 20:35: “…it is more blessed to give than receive.”). He will. And on top of the fact that He gives us the desire to give to bless others, He provides the money and resources, time, energy, skills, and everything else that we give others–then He gives even more to us by giving us sublime satisfaction of sharing–and He causes our giving to be multiplied and come back to us, so we have even more to give the next time (2 Cor. 9:8)!!

He is and forever will be stirred to give more! We can never outgive God, and truly, all that we have, as King David says, comes from Him and we give Him and others only what comes from Him! (I Chronicles 29:6-18)

How amazing and wonderful and beautiful and good is our truly awesome Daddy God (Psalm 34:8)!

Are You Grafted In?

Romans 6:5 (TPT), For since we are permanently grafted into him to experience a death like his, then we are permanently grafted into him to experience a resurrection like his and the new life that it imparts.

  Romans 11:17 (TPT), However, some of the branches have been pruned away. And you, who were once nothing more than a wild olive branch in the desert, God has grafted in—inserting you among the remaining branches as a joint partner to share in the wonderful richness of the cultivated olive stem. “

John 15:1Jesus the Living Vine ] (TPT), “I am a true sprouting vine, and the farmer who tends the vine is my Father.”

 (TPT) John 15:4, So you must remain in life-union with me, for I remain in life-union with you. For as a branch severed from the vine will not bear fruit, so your life will be fruitless unless you live your life intimately joined to mine.”

The LORD is so funny–He has a great sense of humor, and He knows just how and when to comfort us. One of His names is, after all, The Comforter. Some versions use this term. Otherwise, BIFF (Best Invisible Friend Forever, as Princess Pearl, P.O.W.E.R. Girl calls Him, will work!)

John 14:16-17 “And I will ask the Father and he will give you another Savior, the Holy Spirit of Truth, who will be to you a friend just like me—and he will never leave you. The world won’t receive him because they can’t see him or know him. But you will know him intimately, because he will make his home in you and will live inside you.”

For some reason, I was thinking about hurtful things people had said about how slim I was. Being tall and slim has served me very, very well. It really is a blessing from the LORD. However, I’ve had some people through the years actually hate me for it, and some say hurtful things to me about my slimness–while some of them, at least, I knew were trying to achieve the same slimness. Sigh. Don’t you wonder how the LORD ever puts up with the carnality of us humans?

Anyway, I have learned to overcome through the years, and not be distracted by such temporal things (an excellent article on this is at Jesus Online), although it has not always been easy. (First, forgive those making fun of you; they know not what they do, so to speak…).

So I recognized these fiery darts (although slight, they were still darts), and spoke out loud (you cannot fight thoughts with thoughts; you must speak the Word, or Word-based truth, to shut them down. If they keep coming, you may need to check your heart to see if you have truly forgiven. Ask me how I know! But the enemy has no new tricks, so he’ll try to use the same things on you, even if you are free!), and said out loud, “Interesting that those who have called me a “twig” have been trying to become a “twig” themselves!” And I kept peeling my potatoes.

“A twig on the right Tree!” my sweet Daddy God said immediately to my heart. Joy bubbled up and I laughed for several seconds, with happy tears. “Yes! I am a twig that’s part of the Right Tree, amen!”

The Spirit of Truth is the Spirit of Joy, Who is the Comforter, Who is the Savior Jesus Christ, Who is our BIFF. Why would you try to do life without Him? Get a real Life (John 10:10) today–just ask Jesus the LORD to forgive you of your sins and come into your life and do something with it. He will! (John 3:15-17, Ephesians 3:20).

Forgiven

“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” John 8:36, ESV

New American Standard Bible 
And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise. Galatians 3:29

“Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up,  that everyone who believes in Him may have eternal life. For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that everyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” John 3;14-16, Berean Study Bible

The man driving the semi truck in front of us was sharing the good news, that he was “FORGIVEN”! The fish symbol Ichthys used by Christians throughout the world containing this one huge word says it all: If you have believed on Jesus Christ as the Savior of the world, and that He shed His blood to pay for the sins of every person, and received Him as your personal Savior and LORD, then you also are FORGIVEN–FREED. You don’t have to pay for your sins!

How can it be that simple? Don’t ask me. Just be glad that I’m not God. I am sure I would have made it much more complicated to be free and get to Heaven to live forever in Paradise with God!

But the LORD is good, and His mercy endures forever (Psalm 129:4). He created mankind, then, when man betrayed God and bowed to the devil, He sent Jesus to die and give His life to buy mankind back, forever (Galatians 3:13) .

The Gift of true Life is yours. Choose Christ today, and live! (John 10:10)

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!  

Fear, You Don’t Exist!

2 Timothy 1:7: For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. Amen! (ESV)

Years ago, I was really stressed about finances.

I had a nightmare that I lost my job, and had to run and hide because not having a job was against the law. I had gone to a friend’s home, secretly, and sat down to rest. Two bad guys from ‘the government’ burst in and the taller grabbed my leg and stuck a huge needle in it, supposedly as punishment for not having a job.

(Listen to the audio version of this at https://anchor.fm/rainwater )

But instead of screaming or writhing in pain, I just looked at the guy and calmly said, “Fear, YOU DON’T EXIST!”

The guy jamming the needle in my leg looked totally shocked, and almost choked. “What?!” he said–then disappeared!

The smaller guy looked shocked as well. “If he doesn’t exist, then I don’t either!” he said, and disappeared as well.

The LORD has not given us fear. Jesus has given us the spirit of POWER, and LOVE, and of a SOUND MIND (DISCIPLINE)! And The Govenment is upon HIS Shoulder (the Church! Isaiah 9:6)

Hallelujah!

Son or Sin?

I John 5:1-5, states: “Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and everyone who loves Him who begot also loves him who is begotten of Him. By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and keep His commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome. For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—[a]our faith. Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? And verses 11 and 12 from the Word of God state, “11 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. 12 He who has the Son has [d]life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.”

Do you have the Son–Jesus Christ? If not, then you have sin, you are without God’s protection, and your spirit will go to hell forever when your body dies (Matt. 7:21)

God makes things simple: We either agree with Him and come into the Royal Family and enjoy His blessings and benefits–including amazing protection from evil–or we stay outside and try to do this complicated, pressure-filled life on our own. If we do not know the LORD Jesus as our Savior and become friends with His Son (Jesus), then God is not our Father, and we don’t have relationship with Him. We are on our own.

But thank God this earthly life is NOT all there is!

So there are two choices: God, or not God; Son, or sin.  Today, you choose–life, or death. The LORD Jesus Christ and the abundant life (John 10:10), where “the Good Life” truly does happen (and all the more as we learn God’s ways and follow them, for He is good, and His mercy endures forever! Psalm 118)–or doing life on your own, where things get harder and harder, and you wind up at the end of it all, going to literal hell (Luke 12).

But the LORD is ever ready to pardon, to forgive; that is why He sent Jesus! God is a good God. He is Love (I John 4:8). He made the way for all to know Him and have a wonderful life–then literal Heaven after the body dies on earth (Acts 26:18), with freedom from everything negative, the loving wonderful Presence of God with you always, interesting and productive things to do, and a beautiful, literal home all your own!

He says in John 14:1-3 (NKJV), “1 Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many [a]mansions; if it were not so, [b]I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”

You can choose to remain as you are, in your sin, separated from God. But why would you do that? The God-life is amazing, and it just gets better. God is all good, and very kind and gracious and merciful! He is holy; His Standards are high, and no person can meet them, except to be covered by the Blood of Christ, which covers us when we receive Jesus (Rev. 12:11.

Jesus the LORD is returning to earth soon, to claim and receive and take to Heaven all of us who are His. Will you be going with us? If you think the earth-life is bad now, understand this: Without Christ and true Christians in the world, there will be no light. You must choose for yourself; no one can choose for you.

Even if you’re not sure this is real, don’t you want a better life than you have? Call to God and ask Him to help you find Him and know Him. Ask Him to prove to you that He and His good life are real. He will, for all who call upon the name of the LORD will be saved (Romans 10:13)!

Who Needs a Man?

James 5:17 (TPT), Elijah was a man with human frailties, just like all of us, but he prayed and received supernatural answers. He actually shut the heavens over the land so there would be no rain for three and a half years!”

About 15 years ago, I read a “joke,” that said something like, “I have a job, email, and pizza delivery. Why would I need a man?”

That is the way a person who doesn’t know God and how He has made us to depend upon Him and one another may think. But that person really does depend on “a man”–if only the “man” who supplies the job, the email service, who built the computer and lines the email comes through, and the one who delivers the pizza, to name a few.

The LORD God of Heaven and earth has chosen to need “a man” and by that, I mean a person–man or woman, boy or girl, who will hear His Voice and work with Him to bring about His Kingdom in this earth.

In Ezekiel 22:30, He says, “I sought a man among them who should build up the wall and stand in the gap before Me for the land that I should not destroy it.” Wow–the LORD is so very patient and gracious, that the prayers of just one person coming earnestly and respectfully before the LORD can save a whole nation! There are many instances in the Bible about this.

Who needs a man? God does. Romans 5:19 is one Scripture the LORD has continued to bring to my awareness through the past couple years, to remind me that, when I–one man–obey Him and lift Him up, He can and will perform His Word and reach people: “For as by the one man’s disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man’s obedience the many will be made righteous.”

Jesus, The Man–Who left His diety and became a man to live among us, that He may understand everything that tempts us yet not sin, was one Man.

Hebrews 4:15 (ESV) states, “Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to what we profess. 15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who was tempted in every way that we are,yet was without sin. 16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.… “

What can one–just one man (person) do? Much. There have been rulers that were wicked and accomplished much evil. The LORD never makes mistakes (Romans 11:29) and can use us to accomplish much good. He promises in John 12:32, “And I will do this when I am lifted up off the ground[a] and when I draw the hearts of people[b] to gather them to me.” 

When we lift up Christ, by letting Him live through us, first of all–and also by telling others about Him, He draws other people to Him. When His Holy Spirit convinces them of their need for Him and they agree, they will be saved.

So, as the song says, “This little light (life) of mine; I’m gonna let it shine.”

Who needs a man? GOD does. He needs YOU! He put you on the earth to know and enjoy Him and help others know how good He is. So just ask Him what your part is, or do what He has already told you to do, and He will work through you and multiply your efforts in marvelous ways!

“He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness.” 2 Cor. 9:10, ESV



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!

FREEDOM! What Easter Really Means

What does Jesus’ death and resurrection mean to us? The simplest definition is: Freedom! Freedom from death, the curse, the power of destruction. Freedom from lies to live and love the Truth. Freedom from fear, doubt, worry, stress–freedom to be who God created us to be, and to be glad about it!

Here are just three verses (from The Passion Translation) about our glorious freedom in Christ!

Psalm 34:22  “But the Lord has paid for the freedom of his servants, and he will freely pardon those who love him. He will declare them free and innocent when they turn to hide themselves in him.”

Psalm 107:14 “His light broke through the darkness and he led us out in freedom from death’s dark shadow and snapped every one of our chains.”

2 Corinthians 3:12  “So then, with this amazing hope living in us, we step out in freedom and boldness to speak the truth.” (TPT)

Galatians 5:1  It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

It is for freedom we’ve been set free! If we humans desire for enslaved children and people to be free; if we desire animals to be free from abuse; if we desire creation to be free from pollution; if we desire our atmospheres to be free from stress and strife; how much more does the God of Heaven and earth want us to be and stay free–and enjoy it!

Freedom to live in Christ, to His Glory, is what I mean here. In submitting to His loving leadership, we are truly and forever free!

As He says in Galatians 5:1, “Let me be clear, the Anointed One has set us free—not partially, but completely and wonderfully free! We must always cherish this truth and stubbornly refuse to go back into the bondage of our past.”

If you have not received the freedom of Christ, or if you’re not sure, just choose to believe that God is real and good–He is the One Who created you and gives you every breath and every other good thing!

For God so loved the world–everyone–that He gave His only Son, Jesus, that whoever believes in Him should not die, but have everlasting life! John 3:16!

Say this out loud: “Dear Jesus, I believe you were crucified for my sins–what I’ve done against Your Holy Word–and I need You to please forgive and cleanse me. I believe You rose again after three days and live forever, ruling in Heaven and preparing a place for those who believe in You. Please come into my life and be my Leader and Savior and LORD, my best Friend for life. I receive You now and thank You. Amen!”

Now, if you just said this prayer out loud, the LORD is so good to hear and answer! All who call upon the Name of the LORD shall be saved (Romans 10:13)! He loves you and has been waiting for you to acknowledge and receive His loving leadership. Now, you have an eternal Covenant with Him, through your belief (faith) in what He did for you!

As Him to lead you to the right group of people who will help you truly grow in Christ, and to help you find the right Bible for you to study. He will. He loves you, and delights in you and will help you with every detail of life as you ask and trust in Him! As He says in Isaiah 65:24, “Even before they call, I will answer; while they are still speaking, I will hear.”

Trust Him and be free. He is faithful forever!

JESUS Felt It!

Hebrews 13:8 (ESV) says, “Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday, today, and forever.” He never changes.

Praise Him! That being said, I believe in healing, for the LORD Jesus is alive today as much as ever. He healed on earth, and now lives in every Believer as the Holy Spirit, the Comforter Whom Jesus sent back to help us when He ascended into Heaven. He works His healing miracles through us who truly Believe and cooperate with Him in His multi-faceted ministry on earth.

A few years ago, I went up to our pastor, an apostle who operates in signs and wonders and healings, and received my healing for my back. He laid hands on me and I thought, Why didn’t I feel it? I had felt the healing power go into me on other occasions–like a warm pleasant electricity.

Then I immediately repented to the LORD for even thinking that. It didn’t matter–I was healed!

My Father Who knows all things–even every thought before we think it–graciously and quickly said, “You don’t have to feel it. JESUS felt it!”

When you consider Good Friday and our LORD’s Resurrection, remember, JESUS felt every lash, every slash, every sin, every burden, every pain–all for you. All for me. All for this world’s humanity.

He took the curse and paid the price so we could be free. His Kingdom is eternal, and not of this earth–He leads us to freedom, celebration, and to full restoration. He is the good King Who will soon return, and His mandate is Love!

If you are tired of this world’s pressured mess, there is something so much more: JESUS! He is the kindest, most patient, most loving, most thoughtful, most gracious, most generous Man and most faithful Friend there is-all God and all man–Who died and rose again to give YOU the life you heart has always wanted! (John 3:16)

If you want to have Him as your fearless Leader Who will never lead you wrong, just say this prayer out loud: “Dear Jesus, please forgive me of what I’ve done wrong. Thank You for dying on the cross for me to pay for all my sins. Thank You that You rose again to give me new life! I need You in my life to be my LORD and Savior and to teach me how to live to please you and enjoy the wonderful life You died to give me. I received You now and thank You. Amen!”

If you just said this prayer, an eternal spiritual transaction just took place: You are now a child of the King of kings, with a Blood Covenant that gives you many excellent and powerful rights that you did not have before! And you did NOT have to work for it–it’s a gift from God by faith (believing) through grace (the gift of God Who WANTS you to enjoy this new abundant life! John 10:10)! The next step is to ask God to direct you to the right Bible for you, and to the right Body of Believers (church) where you can continue to grow in the Truth and have friends who also follow Christ!

The Light Outshines the Darkness–Every Time!

The Light Outshines the Darkness–Every Time!

John 1 The Passion Translation (TPT)

The Living Expression (www.Biblegateway.com)

In the very beginning[a] the Living Expression[b] was already there.

And the Living Expression was with God, yet fully God.[c]

They were together—face-to-face,[d] in the very beginning.[e]
And through his creative inspiration
    this Living Expression made all things,[f]
    for nothing has existence apart from him!
Life came into being[g] because of him,
    for his life is light for all humanity.[h]
5 And this Living Expression is the Light that bursts through gloom[i]
    the Light that darkness could not diminish
![j]

I believe it was Dr. Creflo Dollar whom I heard say, “Darkness will never outdo the Light.” Darkness will never outdo the Revelation of the unfailing, unchanging, unstoppable Truth of God–His Living Word.

The Word of God sheds Light–revelation, understanding–in our minds when we read it and hear it, and all the more as we think about it and ask the LORD for clarification. He is faithful!

I am so amazed and thankful that He has given us His Living Word, His Living Expression. The answers for successful life are ALL in there.

I’m about to go read more myself. No matter how many Scriptures I have memorized or how many messages I’ve heard from the Word, I want more. It is at once deeply satisfying and creating an insatiable hunger for more.

Jesus the LORD IS the Living Word. He is our Teacher, our Salvation, our Hope, our Peace, our Joy, our Love, our Strength, our Victory, and He eternally speaks through His Word.

If you have thought you could not understand the Bible, you may be right. This holy Book is only truly understood if you have the True Teacher, Jesus Christ, within you. You must be born again by His Spirit, and then He will enter your life and start helping you understand His Victory Book, the Bible.

Life can be hard, very hard. But Jesus makes it simple. Just find out what He says and do it.

With that, I’m going right now to get more instruction for myself!

Sparkle!

Matthew 5:14 You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden.

John 8:12 Once more Jesus addressed the crowd. He said, I am the Light of the world. He who follows Me will not be walking in the dark, but will have the Light which is Life.

Sooner than we’d planned, my husband and I had to acquire a new car. After months of praying and choosing to be content to drive my 20-year-old Avalon (very nice in it’s day, but it’s “day” had pretty much expired), I powered down the driver’s window on the way home from an amazing church service (http://www.experiencehim.org) where God really moved.

The window refused to power back up, leaving a gap where uncomfortably cool air came in. Having known this day was coming, and also having been growing in my faith that the LORD is good, is owner of Heaven and earth (Psalm 24:1), and that He has only the best for us, His Covenant kids, I resolved at that moment that I was not investing any more money into the car. I released my faith right then for my new ride.

It took several days and lots of fuel, but praise the LORD Clayton and I were both on vacation from teaching school, and easily able to do this. God is soooo good! I was getting a bit discouraged after a few days of searching, but I know my faithful Father, my Good Shepherd, leads me by peace. I never had peace–until the last stop we made at Yokem Toyota on the last day, not even knowing if they had the 2014 Toyota Camry I wanted.

They did. They’d just gotten it in and had not even detailed it. But we had been praying and thanking the LORD for just the right one, and sure enough, I test drove it, and felt in my spirit that it was right. It drove smoother and seemed, as I told Clayton, more “weighty” than the others, in every good way. It had all the extras, which is how our loving Daddy works!

The salesman moved it to the front to have it prepared for us. The LORD gave us favor and we drove it home that day–in sunlight, as compared to the very rainy days before. What a blessing!

In the light, I saw my gray Camry in a new way; although it may have seemed kind of plain to some, when the light touched it, it sparkled, glistening silver–the color of redemption. My car is just like me, I thought. When the light of the Son, Jesus, touches me, I sparkle!

No Doubt!


20 No unbelief or distrust made him waver (doubtingly question) concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong and was empowered by faith as he gave praise and glory to God,
21 Fully satisfied and assured that God was able and mighty to keep His word and to do what He had promised. — Romans 4:20-21, AMPC

John 11:40  Jesus said to her, Did I not tell you and promise you that if you would believe and rely on Me, you would see the glory of God?

After powerful services at my church and online the past few days, during which my faith leaped and I know that I know that God is doing greater things this year than we’ve ever experienced before, doubt and unbelief and after-the-holidays heaviness has tried to creep in. I rebuke these things in Jesus’ name!

Our God is FAITHFUL! He can never lie. He IS the Truth and HE has been waiting more than all of us. It is HIS Time for Him to pour out HIS Glory–and we get to be part of it. HALLELUJAH!

Father, we bless You, and we thank You that You have chosen us to work with Jesus in these Last Days to complete Your work on earth, amen! What an honor and privilege! Help us to hear and obey Your loving Voice, and as we obey, we will be satisfied, prospered, and extremely effective in expanding Your Kingdom. Amen and amen!

Suffer Like This to Expand God’s Kingdom!

13 And they brought young children to him, that he should touch them: and his disciples rebuked those that brought them.   14 But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God 15 Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.  — Mark 10:13-15, KJV

I am so thankful for the King James Version of the Bible, for it was the version the LORD used to cause me to start reading and loving  His Word when I was in the Southern Baptist Church in a small community about 45 years ago!  There were many words in there that I did not properly understand, such as “suffer.” I only knew it to be a negative word, and didn’t want to do any more suffering than I had to.

However, I’ve since learned that “suffer” also means “let.” Thus, when Jesus says to “suffer the little children to come to (Him), He means to let them, to not hinder them, to not discourage them, and, I truly believe, to purposely  encourage them to follow Him and to be examples of disciples of Christ.

As a teacher, it is natural for me to encourage children, and I am working at being a better example of Christ daily, so that they will be drawn to Him.

Children are not just leaders of the future; they are leaders now, and their pure spirits can easily receive the higher things of God. Let us be living letters of the love of Christ for them to read and understand–and to go and do likewise!

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!