“It is What It is!”

IT is What it is!

We know why God sent His only son Jesus Christ into the world it was to die a cruel death on the cross for our sins – not our mistakes – our sins. There’s a difference between the two. When Jesus forgave the adulterous woman He told her after He’d forgiven her to go and sin no more. He made His warning clear. He did not say do not make this mistake again, He said, “…sin no more.” The woman was caught doing wrong: getting caught was the mistake, her sin was committing adultery.

Notice in the reading from John 8:10-11, Jesus addressed her sin, not her mistake:

Straightening up, Jesus said to her, “Woman, where are they? Did no one condemn you?” She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “I do not condemn you, either. Go. From now on sin no more.”

Mistakes are usually unintentional. We don’t mean to make them or to get caught but our sins are most often done willfully. Why does mankind willfully sin? It’s in the makeup of our sinful nature. Does a thief intentionally get caught when he/she steals? Of course not! They made a mistake somewhere in their planning or failed to plan altogether. However their sin was taking something that didn’t belong to them.

Romans 6:28 says, “Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labor, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that need.” The Ten Commandments also says, “Thou shall not steal.” Dear Hearts sin is sin. It is what it is. Jesus made it abundantly clear and so should we.

Some mistakes can be corrected depending on what it is. We all have had to erase misspelled words or have had to make a U-turn while driving. Those are simple mistakes; a part of everyday life. Sin however will send our souls to eternal damnation: Hell. We can’t make light of sin by watering it down or calling it by another name.

IT is What it is! Easier to forget sin @saintintraining.netDear hearts, I never would have become sin-conscious if I’d looked at everything I did as a mistake! Nor would I have had a reason to repent of my sins. If someone had not told me I had sinned I could’ve just used my common sense and purposed not to get caught again, to make that particular ‘mistake’ again. It’s easier to erase a mistake from one’s conscious than to forget sin. Sin sticks with you even if it’s deep in the subconscious it’s always there making you uncomfortable. There’s no way to be complacent about sin. Mistakes allow us to live guilt-free with no need for repentance or salvation.

Jesus Christ fulfilled His earthly ministry. His message was about repentance from sin and the need for redemption from them; He never taught about redemption for mistakes. God has not given anyone permission to alter His words; no preacher, teacher or laymen possess that right. Beloved the bible tells us what’s right and what’s wrong. It has been and will always be right. That means somebody else is wrong! We have to tell it like it is or remain silent!
When King David sinned against Uriah by committing adultery with his wife he got caught by her pregnancy. In his mind, he’d made a mistake and so he tried to clean it up but only succeeded in compounding his sin. But there came a time when he was confronted with the truth; he acknowledged his sins before the Lord and this is what he said:

“Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions. Wash away all my iniquity and cleanse me from my sin. For I know my transgressions, and my sin is always before me.” Psalm 51:1-3 (NIV)

If the prophet Nathan had not had the boldness to call sin by its name the King may have continued in his sinful actions. Beloved, there are things in this life that needs to be replaced because of wear and tear, they’re just plain worn out but God’s word needs no replacement or revision. Only a sin-conscious mind can bring forth true repentance from a contrite heart. Repentance is the only road mankind can take to Redemption. By receiving the free gift of the Holy Spirit we are set free from our sins. The biggest mistake is to leave this world without it.

Salvation is ours for the asking. God loves us very much and He wants us to spend eternity with Him. It’s as simple and as wonderful as that – it is what it is!

To Live is Christ

To Live is Christ

Proverbs 23:4-5 ESV

“For me to live is Christ [His life in me], and to die is gain [the gain of the glory of eternity]. . . . My yearning desire is to depart (to be free of this world, to set forth) and be with Christ, for that is far, far better; But to remain in my body is more needful and essential for your sake. . . . I shall remain and stay by you all, to promote your progress and joy in believing, So that in me you may have abundant cause for exultation and glorying in Christ Jesus. . .” Philippians 1:21 – 26a (AMP)

One day I sat at my desk pondering my monetary worth and realized I had nothing of value at all. I felt low and despondent. In my 30 plus years what had I truly accomplished? The more I sat and pondered the worse I felt. Satan pulled up a seat and helped me count the reasons why I was worthless and of little use. But then a moment of clarity came over me (born of the Holy Spirit, not me). The thought dropped in my heart, ‘Don’t judge your worth by the money you have in the bank or the lack thereof. Your value is in God.’ and my heart was lifted!

I understood then that where we store our treasures is where our hearts will be. If our treasure is in this world our hearts will be bound to the earth and the uncertainty in it. However, if it’s in Heaven, we will forever have hope, peace and a divine expectation of good things to come. If the thought of Heaven is not enough to lift a downtrodden heart what hope is there to replace it?

A. W. Tozer shared an excellent example of a Christian living in a foreign land. We who have been Spirit-filled and blood-washed, are foreigners down here on earth. This is why we’re restless and unhappy when we are too much surrounded by carnality and the things those who embrace this world cling to. We stick out! We speak with an accent (a heavenly language produced by a heaven-oriented mind) and the natives do not understand us. We walk differently and just don’t fit in. Why? Because we who are Spirit-born are not yet home.

A Foreign LandWhy build a kingdom in a foreign land where the wealth is sure to disappear and go to waste? A wise Christian sets aside his/her wealth in their homeland not in a temporary dwelling place. The soul who commits to building up a kingdom whose foundation is love will have a store of riches in Heaven as well as here on earth. Perhaps not in the form of dollars and cents but these riches is a currency of the divine variety.

Peace, forgiveness, forbearance and patience are some of its denominations but the greatest unit of this divine currency is love. Love strengthens, encourages and gives hope. Love heals and lends grace for hard times. Without love the other denominations hold no value.

God’s Word is woven from the fabric of His love. This is why God’s Word has such staying power (His love never ends because He has no end!). Indeed it is on the very foundation of God’s love that the world stands. His love saw us from a distance and moved Him to speak a world into existence. He handcrafted us out of His love and breathed life into the first man with effusive love! It was God’s love that forgave man’s sin and His love that created the plan to redeem him. And then His love took a radical step, a leap of faith in His own love and came down to this land of foreigners to dwell as one of them. Oh the Treasure that walked amongst us! What royalty! What love!

Beloved, why do you toil and labor to stay here on foreign soil when such a one as He has built a finer Kingdom in our native land? Why do you seek to fit in amongst strange people in a strange land? Do you plan to stay forever here in a world that has a predestined end?

Where is your treasure storedDo you not know that worldly riches, endeavors, ventures and enterprises are for worldly people? Have you not perceived? Worldly – world oriented– worldly minded people labor for worldly treasure. Beloved where is your treasure stored? Where will your final dwelling place be? Have you done all to secure your ticket home? Or are you still planning for your earthly goals?

Dear Ones, Our Father does not ask us to give up dreaming. Nor does He ask us to cease living. He only ask that we give over our will, fix our hearts firmly towards God and He has promised to direct us safely home. Believe this: what He has for us far outshines any imaginings of our hearts.

Material wealth is not gain. Worldly success does not bring peace. Beloved, have you stopped to consider? Do you yet discern the truth? Are you willing to finally desist from your labors to be led by God? As for me, to live is Christ but to die is gain. What say you?

Ask. Trust. Wait.

Is the Path You Tread The One Where He Leads?
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT)

When we seek God for His vision for our lives we must do so with the understanding that:

1. God often reveals in part (he knows what we can and cannot handle according to our spiritual maturity).

2. A revelation once revealed is not always (more often than not – never) meant for that given time.

3. Patience is required. Knowing the will of God for our individual lives is thrilling! It brings real purpose and peace to us BUT we must have the patience to wait for the vision to be fulfilled.

Too often people receive part of God’s vision for their lives and (being impatient) take off running with it, never considering that the time is not for now but for the future. A prudent man/woman takes time to pause and consider and to seek God for wisdom as to what their next step should be. Remember we must pray without ceasing thus when one prayer yields a vision, more prayer is required concerning how and when it is to be fulfilled. Going before the Lord leads through dangerous paths. So while we wait for clarity and direction what must we do?!

Trust in the Lord and do good.

Psalm 37:3-6 tells us to trust God (for His leading) and to do good.

Trust in the Lord and do good.
Then you will live safely in the land and prosper.
Take delight in the Lord,
and he will give you your heart’s desires.
Commit everything you do to the Lord.
Trust him, and he will help you.
He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn,
and the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun.

Simply put, spend that waiting-time doing what we already know to do is right: studying the Word of God, serving others (especially our brothers and sisters in Christ), praying continually and trusting that God will make our paths straight.

Trust that He leadsOften times God will not reveal all to us because he uses the waiting-time to grow us. He uses every situation, every opportunity to add maturity to us, to refine our character – to make us more like Him. He stretches our faith in order to grow our trust in Him. Trusting God gives us spiritual stamina and strengthens us in our fight against the principalities of the air and life situations that work to pull us away from God. As we walk (in faith) we trust that He leads.

I was leaving from work one afternoon, it had been a long exhausting day (both physically and spiritually) and I was beat! The weather was cold and wet and I had a trip to the grocery store ahead of me. I just wanted to go home but I had some things I had to get. I thought of the grocery warehouse store and all the aisles, long lines, crowded parking and cranky people and I just…couldn’t. So, I talked to my Father. Father God! I knew that he would lead me, yes, even in this.God will be there!

This is what I said. “Father, I declare this day a victory. Yes, I’m tired and I had a fight on my hands but you gave me the victory and you brought me this far. Thank you so much. I have to go shopping Lord but I’m so tired. I just can’t take the big stores and big crowds. I have these things on my list and I know the other stores run a little high in pricing; will you please lead me to the right store? And Father, will you give me these things on sale? Thank you Lord. I trust you.”Well, I cranked up my car and drove, not knowing what store the Lord would lead me too, but you know, I realized it didn’t matter where I ended up because wherever that was, God would already be there!

I stopped at a regular Food chain store, got front-door parking and as I went down my list beloved let me tell you if I could’ve danced in public and not be taken for a lunatic I would have been dancing down the aisles – every single item I had on my grocery list was on sale! Every single one! And I got in a short line to boot. To top it off the cashier told me that her daughter had just received Jesus the previous night – I rejoiced with her and went out the door floating on peace, joy and the love of an awesome Father. All that I had gone through earlier that day faded to a distant memory.

Do you see? In such a small matter as shopping for groceries God is willing to lead us and to provide. All he asked is that we acknowledge Him and he will do the rest. Acknowledge your Father Beloved. Don’t take that first step without asking for and then following his lead. Jesus cares for you and He wants to reveal Himself to you in ways beyond your imaginings.

Beloved, ask God. Trust him and wait – your Father will not fail you.