“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in his word I hope;my soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchmen for the morning.”
Psalm 130:5-6 ESV
“Because of the Lord’s eternal love for Israel, he has made you king to maintain justice and righteousness.”
The Queen of Sheba saw the glory of God displayed through King Solomon’s splendor and wisdom. She recognized the great love the living God has for his people and paid him tribute by blessing the kingdom he so loved with treasures the greatness of which no one had ever seen.
The Queen of Sheba and King Solomon were, I’m sure, arrayed in fine apparel and carried much authority. But no one is greater than our God!
Questions to Ponder: Is the glory of God being displayed in my life? How am I passing on the blessings that God has granted me to others? Am I paying tribute to God for his love and his great mercies?
What do we envision when we think about an idol? Usually we imagine an image carved out of wood, melted from iron or molded from clay overlaid with silver and gold. The truth is anything or anyone that we esteem, reverence, praise or love more than God can become an idol.
This is not only true for the world in general but it is also true for Christians.
We may not have an image in our homes or churches but what about the person we have placed upon a pedestal, thinking of them more highly than we ought to? Placing them on the same level with God is to make them an idol. Perhaps that person is a Man of God, or a sister or brother in Christ who seems to be on a spiritual level that we haven’t yet reached. If we’re not careful we can come dangerously close to worshipping the creature more than our creator.
Dear hearts the angels in heaven took their eyes off God and shifted their loyalty to a fellow angel, Lucifer – that’s right, Satan. Do you know what happened to them?
God kicked them out of heaven!
Before Satan convinced these angels to follow him he idolized his self. He was puffed up with pride; it gave him a false sense of power. He was so full of his self that he failed to see the truth – what power he had came from God!
His fate should teach us never to focus on ourselves too much: “Me, Myself and I” is a disease we can ill afford to contract.
We can learn this truth from just about anyone even Satan! His fall can teach us to avoid foolish self-seeking notions as well as things we should not do, goals we should not aspire to reach. His example reminds us to stay humble. We are not to love ourselves more than we love God.
Mark 12:30 (NIV)
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.”
This is the first commandment. It’s at the top of the list for a reason and it should prompt us to ask where does God truly stand in our lives? On the side of us where we can take a quick glance at him and keep going? Does He stand uncomfortably between us and an idol that we admire more than him? Perhaps he stands so far behind us until we’ve forgotten his presence altogether?
Dear hearts shouldn’t he stand in front of us? It’s where he belongs. Imagine his loving eyes upon us watching as his beloved children praise, worship and glorify his holy name. Oh what great mercy God has toward us! His patience goes beyond our comprehension and his love for us has to be deeper than any sea and wider than any ocean.
Just writing these words put such a smile on my face – I love our Lord! Oh yes I do!
If we love God the way we are supposed to he’ll reign forever on the throne of our hearts. That’s where he wants to sit. He bled, suffered and died for us to sit there. Don’t dethrone him for an idol.
I had to learn this truth – God is the only sovereign. Years ago, out of ignorance I’d created an idol. It was a long time before I realized what I’d done and it took God to help me to spiritually tear that idol down.
We are to respect, love and help each other when needed and we’re also to obey our spiritual leaders (those to whom God has given his authority) however Paul told the church in Corinth to follow him as he followed Christ. (I Corinthians 11:1)
He did not say, ‘Make me your idol and place me on a pedestal!’ Yet there were some who, if not for his humility, would have done just that. I use this example out of respect for all the unsuspecting ones who have been made an idol by some misguided soul. Most of the time these would-be idols are not aware that they are being looked upon with such admiration and thought of so highly. And in such cases if they were to be asked I’m sure they would place Christ before themselves just as Paul did.
But there are some cases where the individual is not only aware of their idolized status but encourages it! Dear hearts be cautious if you ever encounter anyone who wants to be praised, idolized or receives adulation fit only for God. If they are made of flesh and blood, or even if they be an angel, they do not deserve your praise! That honor is reserved for God Almighty and him alone! If you encounter anyone who willingly accepts God’s glory do what Joseph did – run and don’t look back!
I John 5:20-21 (NIV)
“We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true. And we are in him who is true by being in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.
Dear children, keep yourselves from idols.”
I’ve come to learn that when we make idols out of others our expectation of them is far greater than what God expects from them. He sees them for who they are: they are finite, limited in power. Our God is the only infinite one in heaven and on earth.
Exodus 20:3-6 (NIV)
“You shall have no other gods before Me. “You shall not make for yourself an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water under the earth. You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate me but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.”
Dear ones, when our God teaches us we are well taught. Save your praise for the one who saves and give your best love to the one who loves you most.
If you’ve been touched by this word of encouragement don’t forget to check for more words of inspiration and faith from God through us on Google + and Facebook! Remember, you matter to God and you matter to us.
“Curse me a people.” This is what the King of Moab wished of a greedy prophet. He wanted him to curse a people who threatened to over-run his land. As a result of his fear of loss and invasion he gathered to him neighboring kingdoms and set about instilling the same fear in them. Together they beseeched the prophet for hire, Balaam to curse the children of Israel, who were also the children of God.
The story though old is one that has been told and played out through the ages of time. From Satan to Abel, from the sons of Jacob to the Pharaoh of Egypt, the enemies of God have, and will continue to try, to ‘curse’ the chosen of God.
But there is another prophet, the prophet Isaiah, who declared the words of the Lord, “No weapon that is formed against you will prosper; And every tongue that accuses you in judgment you will condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, And their vindication is from Me,” declares the LORD.”
There is no weapon that is formed to destroy the chosen of God that will ever prosper!
Take a moment to really consider that.
The weapon of lack – can’t prosper. The weapon of sickness – can’t prosper. The weapon of low self-esteem – can’t prosper.
Whether the weapon is forged in the darkest regions of hell or at the front desk of your office – it cannot, shall not prosper!
King Balak can be a foil for every demon in hell, for every backstabber, every gossip-monger, every low-paying job and every disease known (and unknown) to mankind. He had the intent to do harm to a people he knew about but beloved, he didn’t know enough. If he’d done his homework he would have never bestirred himself to seek help where there was none to be found.
Three times he sought a curse from Balaam and three times the reluctant prophet uttered blessings instead. I find it interesting that in his proclamations of blessings he noted this about the children of Israel:
Numbers 23:9(b) NLT
I see a people who live by themselves, set apart from other nations.
The NIV version puts it this way:
I see a people who live apart and do not consider themselves one of the nations.
This is a crucial point. Israel always stood apart from other nations, even when they tried fervently to fit in – they were always set apart. Why?
To be chosen of God, by God, for God is to be forever apart. I remember when I was a little girl I always felt different from everyone around me. That feeling of alienation was, in part, due to the natural growing pains of childhood but it went deeper than that.
I was, at the time unknowingly, aware of the spiritual separation between me and all the other ‘kids’ around me. I saw things different, my awareness of God and my awareness of ‘being’ was keener than someone of my age.
I didn’t understand it at the time but even then I was chosen.
Jeremiah 1:5 (NIV)
”Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart…”
When God calls a soul to be saved that person becomes the elect, the chosen, a child of God – even before experiencing the Rebirth. Salvation, the in-filling of the Holy Spirit sets a soul apart from the world. And just like the Children of Israel, we become inheritors to the blessing spoken over God’s appointed all those years ago.
So what is it we’ve inherited? What blessing was spoken over our lives before we were even born?
Numbers 23:20-23 NLT
20 Listen, I received a command to bless; God has blessed, and I cannot reverse it!
21 No misfortune is in his plan for Jacob; no trouble is in store for Israel. For the Lord their God is with them; he has been proclaimed their king.
22 God brought them out of Egypt; for them he is as strong as a wild ox.
23 No curse can touch Jacob; no magic has any power against Israel. For now it will be said of Jacob, ‘What wonders God has done for Israel!’
In order to receive God’s blessings we must first understand this truth, “God is not a man, so he does not lie. He is not human, so he does not change his mind.” (Numbers 23:19)
The word of God is just that: the absolute, unchanging, all-powerful Word of God. Take a look at your life, your past, has there ever been a time when God has spoken and failed to act? Has he ever promised you a thing and not carried it through?
Delays are a possibility yes but when it comes to God, delays are not a denial! Whether it’s two weeks, two years or two decades, if God has spoken a thing – it will come to pass. It has to because God is His word!
Do you know that God watches over his word until it’s been fulfilled? It’s true. Men speak words haphazardly all the time. Sometimes with intentions to fulfill them, sometimes not but God never speaks a word without purpose or without it coming to completion.
Jeremiah 1:12 (NIV)
The LORD said to me, “You have seen correctly, for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled.”
Beloved of God, Chosen of God, know this: no matter the situation in your life right now, God has already spoken a word, a blessing over it. It may look unwinnable but every time the enemy opens his mouth to curse you blessings will pour out!
Oh my sister, my brother don’t we know the truth?! Don’t we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, for those who have been called according to his purpose? (Romans 8:28)
You matter to God. If you didn’t, you wouldn’t have been chosen. You are the elect of God. You are the chosen and you have purpose. Don’t believe the lies the enemy has been whispering in your ear. Reject the seeds he’s planted in the soil of your heart – throw them out!
Speak blessings over your own life. Speak blessings over the lives of your family, over your job, over your body and over your mind! Stand firm on the promises of God and remember whose you are.
In the coming days I encourage you to profess this word of truth: I am chosen for a purpose and I cannot be cursed.
Don’t take it back. Stand on it and watch the blessings flow in.
If you’ve been touched by this word of encouragement don’t forget to check for more words of inspiration and faith from God through us on Google + and Facebook! Remember, you matter to God and you matter to us.
Dear hearts today’s post is about the power of low self-esteem in the life of a Christian or the redeemed and how to overcome it. Many Christians are not aware that we can be saved and still be influenced by such a powerful force.
Low self-esteem is a spirit that attacks the mind by taking control of, and distorting our perception of ourselves and the world around us. The amount of influence this spirit has over the mind of a believer is a gradual process; it doesn’t occur over night but rather over a period of years. It often begins its attack in a believer’s childhood. By the time that individual reaches adulthood he or she is firmly under its control and his/her view of God and the world around them is distorted.
Our Heavenly Father does not suffer from low self-esteem nor should his children. Low self-esteem is not one of the fruits of the Spirit! In order for us to have a Christ-like mind we must have a positive attitude when it comes to how we think about ourselves.
Satan, who is the Father of Lies, knows that if he can cause us to have a poor perception of ourselves it will make it easier for him to feed us more lies.
Two of the biggest lies he has in his arsenal is: the lie that God doesn’t love us and that God hasn’t forgiven us for our sins!
He will even cause us to see ourselves as worthless, unimportant, alone and unlovable, leaving us in a state of sadness and despair.
When we see God in an incorrect way it gives Satan the ammunition he needs to build up more strongholds against us in order to keep our thoughts in captivity. This will cause us to think and see Him in a way that is contrary to how God intends for believers to think.
Dear hearts it is vital that we understand and recognize the stronghold of low self-esteem so that we can overcome it and so that it will not be a hindrance to our spiritual growth.
In order for us to know who we are it is essential for us to know who we are in Christ Jesus.
As long as we base our identity on how we think or feel about ourselves, or how other people view us, we’ll never see or accept God’s vision of us. After we are filled with his Holy Spirit he sees us through the blood of Jesus Christ. We are no longer the same person.
We are royalty! We are the first heirs of the Heavenly Kingdom. We are the Children of a Great King. To that we can say, “Hallelujah”! Praise our God!
Dear Hearts, our Heavenly Father loves us with such a great love and there’s no stronghold that is so powerful that he cannot pull it down! Even low self-esteem with all of its strongholds can’t stand against the power of all powers, the Lord Jesus Christ.
My blessed brothers and sisters in Christ I encourage you today, let’s stop looking at the wrong image in the mirror of life, that mirror that Satan has shoved in our faces for years as children and as adults. It only builds up strongholds – it’s time to tear them down, let’s start today!
Let’s look into the mirror that God has been holding up for us all these years. Let’s stop being afraid of the image that awaits us. When we dare to look at that image in God’s mirror we’ll see the identity that we have taken on through the shed blood of Jesus Christ and the in-filling of the Holy Spirit. Yes that’s right; we’ll see His image looking back at us. The very image of God!
Rebecca and I read the following scripture daily, it’s posted on the mirrors in our home and so that every time we look in a mirror we are reminded of how God sees us. Our eyes may play tricks on us but God’s word always reveals utter truth!
Psalm 139:13-18 (NIV)
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. How precious to me are your thoughts,God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand—when I awake, I am still with you.
So you see, the thoughts that God has toward us now did not begin after we were converted! God is awesome! He knew us before we were conceived in the womb, loved us in our imperfect state and already knew his purpose for each of our lives. He has not and will not allow the enemy to destroy us!
When I suffered from the spirit of low self-esteem the thought of suicide crossed my mind. If God had not kept me from the will of the enemy I would not be writing this post nor would I’ve been saved.
Satan may have tried to make an attempt on my life through suicidal thoughts but God blocked him! Our Righteous Lord stood between me and death. Suicide demons have to step back in the presence of the Most Holy! Oh praise God for who He is!
Just think it’s because of our Gracious God that I’m alive today, I have two beautiful daughters, and I am blessed beyond measure. He brought me out of sin and favored me by adopting me into his royal family, to live in his kingdom for eternity.
Is there anyone who can top this blessing plan?
I know no other! In face of such a God as this, strongholds don’t stand a chance!
Remember, there is power in the name of Jesus and dear hearts – he breaks every chain, every chain!
“T’was the night before Christmas when all thro’ the house,”
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.”
This is the way Clement C. Moore’s poem reads;
It tells of St. Nick’s adventures on Christmas Eve.
Yet it was not Santa Claus who saved my soul,
Nor is it to St. Nick to whom my life is owed.
But it is to Jesus Christ, the Soon-Coming King
That I owe my life – my everything.
Let me share a different story with you,
It’s filled with adventure and presents too.
The hero is a child that was born to a virgin
Not a grander tale could be writ not even by Spurgeon!
On the night that Christmas was born, all through the land,
Herod’s foot soldiers hurried in bands.
They searched for a boy child whose birth was foretold:
“He’s to be heralded by angels,” said the prophets of old.
It all began with Mary who was but a humble girl:
A virtuous virgin called out from the world.
An angel did visit and impart to her the news,
“God has chosen you to bless and to be used!”
Astonished, but believing, she accepted the call,
Thus on her one day the Holy Spirit did fall.
She was left with an anointing and gifted his seed
One that would grow and fulfill the Father’s decree.
To save the world with his death and endure its shame:
Immanuel, God with us, was his chosen name.
Joseph, a righteous man, did not know what to do;
He was betrothed to the virgin and would not have her misused.
An angel came to visit him in a vision, in a dream,
“Divorce is not the answer! Things are not as they seem.
Your betrothed is pure; she is wholly undefiled.
God chose her to be blessed; in Him you can rely.”
Joseph heeded the angel and by the Spirit he was led
To take Mary unto him and so, they were wed.
Time passed, as it does, and a Roman census was called,
“People of Jerusalem must be counted, one and all!”
So to Bethlehem Judea Joseph and Mary went
Only to find there were no rooms to be let.
The couple was left no choice but to stay in a barn;
They slept with the animals in the inn-keepers yard.
It was on this night Mary went into travail
Bringing forth the child that all men would hail:
As Savior, as King – God’s gift to the world.
In a manger he was placed and God’s plans unfurled.
Instructed to flee on that very same night,
Joseph arose quickly taking his family in flight
Toward Egypt, a distant and foreign land -
Far away from Herod’s murderous bands!
In Ramah, Rachel was heard crying, weeping – forlorn
For all the two year old males and babes newly born,
Were slaughtered down to the very last one.
The story of the Christ had truly begun.
Herod finally died and the family returned
To Bethlehem Judea where little Jesus learned
All that a Hebrew child should come to know.
In faith and power he waxed strong and did grow.
For thirty-three years Jesus dwelt among men:
Preaching, baptizing and exhorting man to repent.
His purpose was to save the dying and lost;
To reconcile the world unto him at all cost.
His life was only part of the Father’s gift to us.
By his stripes and his pain; by the blood that he lost;
By his death he made it possible for us to be born again.
It was in exchange for his life that we were freed from sin!
This season when you’re sitting around a roaring fire,
Telling your little ones stories to inspire
Set aside ‘The Night before Christmas’ in favor of this:
‘The Night Christmas was born’ and all will be blessed.
© Rebecca C. Wilcox 2012
All Rights Reserved
“This is what the Lord says: “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my good promise to bring you back to this place. 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. 14 I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity. I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.” Jeremiah 29:10-14 NIV
Where you are now is not your destination. There are seasons of struggle, pain, lack, and uncertainty all must face but our season is like the seasons of the earth they are for an appointed time but after the season is over change comes.
Do you know that every promise of the Lord is a covenant, an agreement that cannot be broken?
God is not a man that he should lie, neither the son of man that he should repent. He has promised in His word that when our season is over he will come for us, he will fulfill his promise and he will bring us to our right destination.
BUT the covenant does not end there.
It follows with his desire for us to come to Him, seek him with all our hearts and he promises that he will be found, he will hear and he will answer.
Beloved, do not lose heart in your situation – do what the Lord commanded the exiles in Babylon to do. Pray where you are, seek Him where you are and he will prosper you – yes even in the midst of chaos and confusion – God can prosper you where you are!