Overcoming Temptation

We all are tempted from time to time. Some temptations come by us allowing certain circumstances to be present in our lives, and some seem to just happen. Are these happenings just part of life? And what should we do when faced with them? There’s an old saying, God will not put more on you than you can bear, and it’s true, but we certainly can put more on ourselves than WE can bear. We do this by not recognizing the temptation for what it is, we partake, and then we must pay the cost, and often others around us must suffer as well. There are children on a daily basis, who suffer the consequences of someone else, there are families that suffer the consequences due to someone’s weakness. So what does the Bible say about temptation? 1Corinthians 10:13, “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common(moderate) to man: but God is FAITHFUL, who will NOT suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; BUT with the temptation also make a WAY to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” God is not sitting on His throne allowing impossible temptations to come to you, He is not waiting on the edge of His seat for you to slip and be overtaken by the tempter.  He does not delight when one slips and falls. He allows temptations, but He provides the escape! The escape is staying constant in your Bible reading, staying diligent in your prayers, and most importantly, listening to the still small voice that tugs at your heart and tells you to back up and not take part in the temptation. One who is not approaching temptations with the tools I just mentioned, would be likened to someone going to Siberia in nothing but your pajamas. The wind and cold would rip through you and defeat you, and so will that temptation. The temptation will rip through you, and destroy what you love in this world. People may say, why does God allow it? He allows what He knows can be overcome, He provides the escape, it is up to you to take advantage of the armor and weapons that He has provided,  the victory is in your hands through Christ Jesus. 

The Reaper and the Sower

Yesterday I was mowing the yard that my father in law once mowed. He passed away in October of 2016, and left us all longing for just one more day with him. So when I mow his yard, I always, always think about him. He absolutely loved working in his yard and he had spent years cultivating it, tending to it, sowing seed, and fertilizing. His yard was beautiful, and now his children have the task of tending this yard that had been sown so well for so many years. It seems like quite a job at times, because it’s a big yard full of lush thick grass that seems to grow very quickly. While mowing the yard that he had sown, I pondered the other things that he had sown. He left behind three children who absolutely loved their father, he left a wife that knew there would never be another like him, and I thought, he sowed the grass and we are now reaping his labor, but he also sowed other things as well.  Good or bad, we sow seeds along our journey, and we leave behind those who will reap them. When someone sows seeds of hurt, the victim will forever bear those scars, and when we sow love, others will reap bountifully. Romans chapter 15:7,”For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself.” What we sow amongst people will be reaped by those people. We are not an island and our actions do impact those around us. Treat your loved ones well, value them, treasure them, sow your love in them that they may flourish in the peace and assurance of your care. My advice to the sowers, (us all) is to be careful and considerate, treat your loved ones well, instill in them how much you love them, and do not hurt them, because the roots of hurt grow deep, and my advice to the reapers, (us all), if you have been sown with love pass it on, if you are reaping hurt, try to give the pain and hurt to God, try to let Him be the reaper along with you. I pray you will find peace. 

Servant of God, Not Man

Do you ever feel like you are not important, that you are not accomplishing anything of significance? Have you ever compared yourself to others regarding their job and your job, their position in the church to your own? If so, then I have some words of comfort for you. 1 Corinthians chapter 21:21,22 ” Art thou called being a servant? care not for it: but if thou mayest be made free, use it rather.” (22) For he that is called in the Lord, being a servant, is the Lord’s freeman: likewise also he that is called, being free, is Christ’s servant.” You see here that we are all God’s servants anyway, no matter what your job is, ultimately, you are His and He is yours. The title of your position means nothing. Paul says if you are called to be a servant, care not for it, meaning so what, you are doing what you have been called to do, so in your current state, be all you can be, and let God work through you. God could care less if you are a maid or the CEO of a multimillion dollar company, this means absolutely nothing to Him.  Where you are is your current state, and you may be exactly where He wants you, and in that case, be your best, serve Him, and let others see your testimony. If you are a Christian, no matter your posting, you are a servant of God anyway and should always seek His will and guidance. Be content and do not ever compare yourselves to anyone! You are God’s and He says you are perfect! After all like Paul said in verse 23, You are bought with a price. So don’t worry what others think of you as far as your title, you are not a servant of them, spirituality speaking, you are His. Abide in Him and serve Him, as you fulfill your daily tasks. 

Example of Righteousness or Compromise

Christians will often get a bad rap. Often people will say that we are snooty, or think that we think 💭 that we are better than them, BECAUSE we do not hang out with them. We don’t walk the way they walk, and we don’t talk the way they talk. This is a good thing. To be set apart is what we are supposed to do. We should show and treat all people with kindness, being tender hearted and forgiving, BUT we are NOT to compromise God’s instructions for our lives. To win a lost soul does not require and will never require a Christian to “go along with the crowd ” just to show others that they are their friends. Some will say that they go out to the bars with their sinner friends and so on, to try and convert them. It will not work, if you care for others, and if you are concerned for those people, get on your knees and pray for them while they are at the clubs, and do not participate in those sins. Does this seem harsh? Some may say yes, but what is being said here is Bible, and I will give you the scripture to back it up, and hopefully renew your strength. 1 Corinthians chapter 5:11 and 13, “But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or idolater, or raider, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.” 13,”But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.” I think there are two reason why Paul wrote this, one ☝️is, if a Christian starts to hang around with non-Christians or those who are of ill repute, it will cause their faith to weaken, BECAUSE, sin has a way of creeping in little by little and before you know it, you are condoning those things that you once thought 💭 evil. Secondly, people will often judge you according to the company that you keep. If you are at the club on Saturday night and in church on Sunday morning, are these people going to truly think that you are a Christian, will they even see the need for salvation? Therefore you not only sully your testimony but you also bring reproach on the whole church, and also cause others to doubt the validity of Christ’s salvation. I ask you today to ever be mindful of the example that we are leaving, will it be an example of righteousness or an example of comprising? 

To Stay Humble

As Christians, we should always remain humble. We should never get puffed up and think 💭 that we are something special, for it is God that is using us, and He can certainly send someone else, but He doesn’t want to send someone else for the job He chose you for, He wants to send you. We should never forget that it is God who has called us, and not we ourselves, we should never forget that we can do nothing if not for Him. I do realize that there are a great many people in service for the Lord, who have lost track of this, and that is truly a shame, and for the young Christians out there, don’t let this discourage you from walking in faith, or following God’s plan for your life. In 1 Corinthians chapter 4:6,7, Paul says this, “I have planted, Apollos watered; BUT God gave the increase. (7) So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; BUT GOD that giveth the increase.” Let us never forget that we are His servants, and all glory, honor, and praise go to Him, for He is worthy. If you will keep Him first in your work, acknowledge wholeheartedly that He is the One that causes your ministry to prosper, you will be blessed and I believe your ministry will be blessed as well. Let us stay humble and ever be exalting Him! 

Stand in the Power of God

Most people work their whole lives for retirement. They stow away money 💰 into different accounts in hopes that one day they can live comfortably. Even though this is smart, and what one should prepare, there are still no certainties that all will work out as planned. Different things can happen to you or in what you’ve placed your hope in, and one may lose most or even all of what they have stored. The Great Depression was a time like this, our nation was shaken, and all felt the bitter feeling of defeat. So what are we to do, not save and prepare, or do save and prepare? It is wise to save and prepare, for we do not know how long it will be before Christ’s return, however let us NOT put our hope and faith in these worldly goods. If one trusts in only their wealth or the wisdom of others, they will surely be disappointed 😔. 1 Corinthians 2:5,”That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.” Put God first in your plans, trust in Him, and stand not on the wisdom of others, nor on wealth, nor in your own strength, but stand in the power of God! Trust Him to guide you and help you with life’s decisions, He will surely lend His wisdom unto you if you keep your faith in Him.

Arise, My Fair One

When a person gets saved, they are then called out of their current situation. They were once bound by certain sins, but at once Christ releases them. Some may say that they have seen those who are saved still act the way that they did before. In these cases, I believe that true penitence has not been made, because I know from my own experience, I have seen with my own eyes, that when people truly repent, they are a new creature. So why do others seem to struggle so, or why do they seem to be the same? Perhaps these dear ones experience the forgiveness, but they do not continue to feed their Spiritual body, therefore they become weak. They are shrouded with the denial as they profess to be a Christian but they are yet bound by their sins. Galatians 4:9, “But now, after that ye have known of God, HOW turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage?” This is a simple, straightforward question, why go back to the things which had you bound, why? God says to you, Arise my fair one, and come away. He does not want you to stay bound, but He wants you to be free, free from sin, free from fears, free from doubts, free from anything that keeps you in your current situation. Put aside all manner of things that come between you and God. Repent, and turn from your old ways. God will not make you quit, and make you obey, but through a repentant and humble heart ❤️, He asks us to come away. Come away with Him today, give up the chains that have you bound, become free, and become a new creature through Christ our Lord. He says, Arise My Fair One. 

To Teach and to Be Taught

Knowledge is a powerful thing, and it should always be sought after. One is never too old to learn new things, but you must be willing to learn. Have you ever noticed that if someone has knowledge regarding a subject matter, and when someone else, that has a greater knowledge tries to teach them, they will often shut down or become very defensive. As Christians, we should always be willing to learn from others regarding God’s Word, and a good teacher will enlighten and inspire those that they are talking to. God shines His light on the scriptures for those that desire to learn, and if you be lacking in certain knowledge, He will certainly put someone in your path that can teach you. In Acts chapter 18, there was a man named Apollos, he was an eloquent man and mighty in the scriptures. He had went to Ephesus to preach. The Bible says that he was instructed in the way of the Lord, and fervent in the Spirit, he taught diligently the things of the Lord, but he only knew of the baptism of John. This was a good man, doing the best to teach with all the knowledge that he had, but as I said earlier, God can put others in our path to help teach us more about His Word. Verse 26, “And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue:whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto them, and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly.” I know these ladies handled this in the correct way, with the love of God they taught him more and guess what, in verse 28 it says that, He mightily convinced the Jews, and he publicly showed the BY the scriptures that Jesus was Christ. Let us teach others in a humble spirit, and let us be taught in a humble spirit, because when we are obedient God can use us all the more for His glory. 

The Rewarder

A great many Christians today have tied the hands of God. That’s right, I said they have tied the hands of God. They have done this by, not accessing all of His benefits, they have lost the hope in faith. They have forgotten that HE is the great provider, HE is the great physician. They often will pray a prayer for a healing but they do not seek it, nor do they seek out His will regarding the matter. Everything that is written in the Bible that God said He will do, He will surely do it, but WE must seek Him for guidance in how and what we should be praying for, and then ALLOW Him to move. Hebrews chapter 11:6,”But without faith it is impossible to please Him; for he that COMES to God MUST believe that HE IS, and that He is a REWARDER of them that DILIGENTLY SEEK HIM.” No matter what you are praying for today, could be a healing, could be work related, could be forgiveness, seek Him diligently, have faith in Him, accept His will and forgiveness, and He will do as He said He would do. He is a rewarder to those that diligently seek Him. There are no maybes in that sentence, He WILL do as He said, BUT we must let Him, and untie His hands, believe and hope in faith, trust in Him, and allow Him to work the way He needs to work. 

Only His Word!

Dear friends, we are living in a time of great confusion. I believe some are unknowingly confused, while others are willingly confused. What I mean by this is, some are ignorant and are blindly being led, while there are those who know the truth, know they are doing wrong, know that they are confusing people, and yet they continue on. 

In the movie, Pirates of the Caribbean, ( I can’t remember which), a pirate by the name of Will Turner, tells his love, Elizabeth, “Keep a weathered eye on the horizon.” I know it’s from a movie 🎥 but, we as Christians should keep a weathered eye on the horizon, ever looking for Christ’s return, and ever teaching and learning the truth. Keep your heart ❤️ bent toward God that you may not be deceived by those who teach false religion. What Paul says in 1 Timothy chapter 1:10, says it all, “For  whoremongers, for them that defile themselves with mankind, for menstealers, for liars, for perjured persons, and IF ANY other thing that is contrary to SOUND DOCTRINE.” You cannot believe just whatever comes down the pike, your soul is too precious to be dissuaded from following Christ. Do not even allow yourself to hear one drop of ANYTHING that goes against sound doctrine! If others are preaching, but they are not using the Bible for the bases of their message, if they are not reading from the Only True Way, you need to go and seek a place where the Bible is preached. We are not smart enough, nor good enough, to give life instructions without FIRST reading the Bible. Anything that contradicts His Word is a lie, His Word is the ONLY truth. Do not be sucked in by the deceivers of this world 🌎, rather they be ignorant or full-knowing. Stand on the Word of God, and ONLY on His Word.