“IF”… Faith ACTS

Standard

How does a VITAL CHURCH grow?

It becomes LIFE to ALL.

“WHEN Christ who IS our life. (Colossians 3:4)… then you shall also appear with Him in all glory.”

“Vital” means LIFE.

“If” we truly are born again, Christ IS our life.

I sincerely and without no disrespect say “If” because God says this.

It’s NOT automatic- this ‘salvation’ or ‘born again’ experience I’m referring to.

Something actually happens in the spiritual realm to our spirits, we become a brand new, never before existed, created spirit. (1 Corinthians 5:17).

Just because we believe in God, and have knowledge that Jesus is God’s Son- doesn’t mean we have been born again, or saved.

Just because we go to church, doesn’t make us a Christian, no more than going to McDonald’s makes you a Bic Mac! God’s gift of salvation is 100% FREE, but cost God EVERYTHING.

But He doesn’t force it on us- it’s been offered, and is waiting for each of us to individually receive it, to receive Christ, who IS the gift of eternal life; as our individual Master, Lord, Savior, Redeemer, Deliverer, Healer, Provider, OUR LIFE!!!

It’s conditional, based on each of our individual choice.

He is The Way, The Truth, and THE LIFE.

First thing first responders do upon the scene of an accident is ‘check your vitals.’ They are determining whether or not there is LIFE in us.

Life is a gift, and as believers, CHRIST is our life, and His GIFT of life is to be shared and multiplied. God is a God of increase.

Friends, we all have goals, and most include financial goals. And this is good. But what good is it to gain the whole world and lose our souls??? (Mark 8:36/Matthew 16:26)

As CHRISTians, our main financial goals in life is not to pack away as much wealth as we can FOR OURSELF; but to be able to give without end to those in need all over the world. To spread the gospel into all the world cost money.

The purpose of wealth is NOT to hoard it to ourselves.

I don’t want money for myself. I want it so that I am give it away, so that I can feed the hungry, clothe the naked, house the homeless, give drink to the thirsty- bless those in need, IN THE NAME OF JESUS.

I’m not talking about those capable of helping themselves but don’t., or those trapped in addiction spending every donated dollar on their habit- they need help., too, but a different type of help. For those- I love them and pray for them to receive revelation of God’s presence, power and indescribable gift!

I speak LIFE over them, and plead the blood of Jesus over them. In their presence I speak ‘Jesus.’ ‘JESUS!’ At the name of Jesus, the demons tremble and every knee must bow. And His power is released! (James 2:19/Philippians 2:11/ Luke 10:17/ Mark 16:17-17)

I’m talking about the majority of our world struggling to find clean water to drink; food to eat, shelter- who need our answer, their answer, JESUS.

We must go TO THEM, and TELL THEM. We must SHOW THEM. We must CARE for them, and LOVE them, like the Jesus we confess.

This is why I desire money.

This is why I give what I have. And to keep on giving what I have. It’s not a one time done. check off list thing. It’s GODS WAY. It’s a lifestyle of a Christian.

This is why I am passionate about being part of “THE CHURCH”, and seek a ‘vital’ church (THE BODY OF CHRIST) who gets this!!!

Faith ACTS. It doesn’t sit still. It doesn’t remain in one place, content, like a ‘fat baby.’ I remember back in my singing days, singing an Amy Grant song called ‘Fat Baby.’ It’s time to resurrect this song, folks!!! It’s TIME FOR A GREAT AWAKENING!!! RISE UP!!! Get busy!!!

Here’s the lyrics- read them. Let them get deposited in your spirit. Are YOU a fat baby???

“I know a man, maybe you know him, too

You never can tell; he might even be you

He knelt at the altar, and that was the end

He’s saved, and that’s all that matters to him

His spiritual tummy, it can’t take too much

One day a week, he gets a spiritual lunch

On Sunday, he puts on his spiritual best

And gives his language a spiritual rest

He’s just a faaa…

He’s just a fat little baby!

Wa, wa, waaaaa…

He wants his bottle, and he don’t mean maybe

He sampled solid foods once or twice

But he says doctrine leaves him cold as ice

Ba, ba, ba, ba…ba, ba…ba, ba!

He’s been baptized, sanctified, redeemed by the blood

But his daily devotions are stuck in the mud

He knows the books of the Bible and John 3:16

He’s got the biggest King James you’ve ever seen!

I’ve always wondered if he’ll grow up someday

He’s momma’s boy, and he likes it that way

If you happen to see him, tell him I said,

“He’ll never grow, if he never gets fed”

He’s just a fat, fat, fat, fat, fat, fa-at, fat…

Fat, Fat, Fat, Fat, Fat, Fa-at, Fat…

Fat, Fat, Fat, Fat, Fat, Fat, Fatttt…

Baby…”

Don’t wait until you have ‘enough of the wealth’ YOU think is enough to start giving- you’ll never become a giver if you wait. Start now. Learn to sacrifice now. Become a giver now.

You have to give by faith, with your heart, with what you have now. Trust God. Hey, ALL of the earth is the Lords and the fullness therein. ALL belongs to God… we are only stewards of what He has entrusted us with.

Are we being faithful with it? Are we holding onto it with stingy fingers, even more tightly when the Holy Spirit touches our hearts to give, then we don’t?

Or are we trusting God with EVERY area of our life, including our finances? Are we???

God will take your gift, and will supernaturally multiply it; and will increase your ability to gain more; once your heart lines up with His.

The value of something is determined by what one is willing to pay.

God’s determined our value, ALL of mankind’s value, even in our imperfect condition, was the life of His only Son.

God is a giver. He held nothing back.

We are to follow His example, if indeed He is in us… we are made in His image. We are made to multiply, to increase.

Let’s give all we can selflessly, and see our world changed.

All of the worlds poverty, starvation, need- is solvable through the Christ who is in us…

IF we would but learn to see people as HE sees people…

IF we would but learn to love people as HE loves people…

IF we TRULY would obey and do what HE instructed us to do-we will see in God’s Word WHO we are in Christ, WHOSE we are in Christ, and WHO WE ARE CONNECTED TO IN THE BODY OF CHRIST.

Our body is the ‘new’ temple the Holy Spirit dwells in, if we are truly born again. Our body IS the ‘house’ that our spirit, and God’s Spirit IN OUR SPIRIT, contains.

May ALL our eyes open to this truth!!! May HIS Holy Fire consume us, and His passion ignite us!!!

“Now ALL who believed were together, and had ALL things in common, and sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among ALL, as anyone had need…”

IF we truly desire to be obedient and to become THE church, THE bride of Christ, we need to do what He has instructed us to do, then we will be the vital “church” that grows!

This is how we will know- read what is written, when Peter was with the rest of the other apostles (followers of Christ, who were ALREADY BORN AGAIN):

“Then Peter said to them, ‘Repent. And let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins and you SHALL RECEIVE the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the PROMISE is to you AND TO YOUR CHILDREN, AND TO ALL WHO ARE AFAR OFF, as many as the Lord our God will call.”

“Then THOSE WHO GLADLY RECEIVED HIS WORD… So continuing daily with ONE ACCORD in the temple, and breaking of bread from house to house, they are their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God and having favor with ALL the people. AND THE LORD ADDED TO THE CHURCH DAILY THISE WHO WERE BEING SAVED.”

(Acts 2:37-47)

Advertisements

Awaken the Carriers: Arise!

Standard

Carriers of Your glory.

Yes, Lord!  We are carriers.  Full of Your glory.

Same power that raised Christ from the dead is in us.  

But it’s not JUST for us.

A seed is created to reproduce. 

God commanded us to be fruitful and to multiply.

We are to be full of His glory. 

Filled to spill!

As the healed, we touch others to be healed, in the Name of Jesus.

As the blessed, we touch others to be blessed, in the presence of Jesus.

As the redeemed, we touch others to be redeemed, through the power of Jesus.

As the rich, we touch others to become rich, through the purpose of Jesus.

We are His ambassadors on this earth.  

We are His hands and feet.

He is the potter, we are the clay. He has His plans for our future from BEFORE the beginning of time.

His glory… inside us, the very vessel, the very temple, the very carrier, He created us to be- for HIS glory…

Wait a minute!!! How is it that WE, the carrier He created US to be, argue with Him?

Isaiah 45:9-12 puts this into an excellent perspective:

“Does a clay pot dare argue with its maker, a pot that is like all the others? Does the clay ask the potter what he is doing? Does the pot complain that its maker has no skill? 10 Do we dare say to our parents, “Why did you make me like this?” 11 The Lord, the holy God of Israel, the one who shapes the future, says: “You have no right to question me about my children or to tell me what I ought to do! 12 I am the one who made the earth and created human beings to live there. By my power I stretched out the heavens; I control the sun, the moon, and the stars.”

No. We are the clay. He shapes us and molds us. Then, He fills us with His glory… and it’s not about us. As a vessel- we carry a supply full of the same power that raised Christ from the grave IN US and ALL times, to be the help on this earth to those in our shadows…

Others in our shadows should be covered with Gods glory, because of the glory within us…

Christ IN us, the hope of glory.

What’s IN us comes THROUGH us.

Another thought came to me in prayer-and only God knew all that was on my heart- I’m so thankful that I can take it all to Him in prayer… and then to listen to Him speak.

God is a Holy God, in a perfect, Holy Heaven.

It’s impossible for Him to permit tarnished, sinful spirits in His Holy, perfect heaven.

Yet almost everyone believes, when they die, that they will continue their partying self-centered lifestyle in Heaven., with no understanding of the holiness and pureness of God.

Why would someone who never gave a moments thought about God, who never did anything with or for God’s Son, who often mocked and ridiculed people who lived a life of holiness, WANT to spend eternity in the very environment, with the very people they spent their lifetime avoiding or despitefully using? Don’t they get it? Don’t they realize that the wages, the cost, of sin is death? NOT Heaven’s reward?

Even though He loves us all- only the redemptive covering of the blood of Jesus over us when we cry out to Him, surrender all to Him, repenting and permitting Him to be Lord and Master of our life- through His grace- are we saved, and able to enter His Heaven.

In a hospital if someone’s immune system has been compromised, the medical staff screens the visitors to protect the ones in their care.

How much more does God protect the sanctity of Heaven for His saints to maintain a Holy and pure Heaven?

No, absolutely none- no impurities can enter such a Holy place or be in the presence of a Holy God.

Nothing but the blood of Jesus can wash us clean.

Many people ask ‘how can a good God allow people who’ve never heard of Him (or the plan of salvation) die and go to hell forever?  That’s not fair!’

I’ve personally heard this many times.

But they don’t have revelation of our Holy God or of a Holy Heaven.

They don’t have revelation of Gods plan of our being created to be fruitful and to multiply.

They don’t have understanding how God calls us to GO YE but many disobey and ‘STAY HERE’.

God can’t go against His Holy Word or retract what He has commanded.  

He is waiting on US, His CHURCH, to do what He created and commanded us to do, and the blood of those perishing in Hell is on us. 

We WILL be held a accountable and judged for what we did not do.

It’s time to stop THINKING about it and to start DOING it.

Too many people in need all across this world.  

Biggest need is Jesus. If we can get them Jesus- Jesus will get them everything else they need.

And remember- Jesus gets people what they need THROUGH PEOPLE who are part of The Church.

So let us be carriers of Your glory, God!

Let us share Your love, unconditional love!

Let us testify of Your goodness!!! Of Your Miracles!  Of Your salvation!

Use us, Lord!!!  Use us to carry Your glory!

Fill us, spread us, forgive us, bless us.

There are people suffering, and we can make a difference!

There are people hurting, alone- and we can love them.

There are people dying without You Jesus, and we should be telling them about You.

Help us, Lord! Wake us up, Lord!!! Awaken us!!! Shake us!!! Let YOUR GLORY in us ARISE!

Hope arising-Sunflower miracle

Standard

Every time I see a sunflower, I smile.  It reaches deep into my soul, and takes me back to a time where I was filled with despair, heartache, and anguish over the death of my beloved Great-Aunt Zippy, but how faithful is my God who hears and heals the brokenhearted!    What does this have to do with a sunflower?  With Hope arising?  With a miracle?

I’ll tell you.  Growing up the oldest of three, and the only girl, and as a military child was difficult for me.  My younger brothers had each other as playmates regardless of where we moved to, but I never seemed to fit in.  My Aunt Zippy, who lived in Charles City Iowa, had a soul connection with me.  Though I didn’t get to see her often, the times we did get to visit were so instrumental and profound, the memories of our visits boosted me.  She always had a way of making me feel special, even long-distanced.  She seemed to read my mind, and know when I was struggling.  Sometimes, I’d get a letter in the mail from her, in her curly old-fashioned handwriting; always ending with “Aunt Zippy loves you!”  Other times, I’d get a phone call from her, with her saying “Aunt Zippy just needed to hear your voice dear. Is every thing OK?” And all of my troubles would spill out into her listening ear.

Well, the day came when she passed away.  When my mother called me, and said she had to tell me something that was going to upset me, suddenly in my heart, I knew.  “Is it Aunt Zippy?” I asked.  And mom confirmed.  A part of my heart stopped beating at that moment, and I fell into a depressed, numb shock. NOOOOOOOOOO!  I screamed silently.  It couldn’t be true!  I wasn’t ready for her to die!

We weren’t sure how we were going to afford driving to Iowa for her funeral.  Our available cash was non-existent. At the time, I was selling Longaberger Baskets, and had a large amount of the collector baskets, and a few avid customers who loved deals.  I decided to bundle a bunch together and offer a grouping too irresistible to refuse, and was soon able to exchange a truck load of baskets for the cash we needed, and we were on our way, with our 3 children in tow.

We were asked to sing at her funeral.  Our son plays the guitar and sings, along with the rest of us.  We decided we would sing “I Can Only Imagine”.  I couldn’t imagine being able to sing, when I wasn’t able to talk without crying, and breathing was difficult.  I kept praying for the Lord to give me strength.

Aunt Zippy’s favorite flower was the Sunflower.  Due to a drought in the area, it was difficult  finding sunflowers for her funeral.  Her son, my cousin Paul, was able to get a few ordered for her casket.  Seeing her like that was the hardest sight I ever witnessed.  I missed her so much!  I was consumed with the deepest anguish, and struggled to find peace.

You see, only a few weeks before her fiftieth wedding anniversary, her husband, my Uncle Red, passed away following complications with heart surgery.  She was so angry at God!  She felt cheated.  When I would try to talk with her about it, she’d clamp up, and I sensed the bitterness that was settling in, mixed with her heartache.  I knew she was raised in a church, and knew she was a member of the local church in fact; but didn’t know for sure she’d given her heart to Jesus, and received Him as her personal Lord and Savior.  The uncertainty of her eternal rest was eating away at me, and was the source of my agony!

Desperate to know, I cried out to God.  On our return trip home, still numb with grief, still in shock, still searching within, I asked God “Father God, You know where she is.  You know how much she means to me, and how much I am hurting.  I know all things are possible with You.  I ask that You show me a sign dear Lord, that she is with you in Heaven.  I need a miracle dear Lord.  Please let it be, In Jesus Name, amen.”

My head against the window, looking out at the roadside, tears streaming down my face, Iowa corn fields passing by us as we traveled, all of a sudden, I see the most amazing sight!  There on the right side of the road growing wild were several beautiful, tall sunflowers!    I jumped up, and exclaimed to my family “Look!  Did you see that?  There were 2 or 3 large sunflowers right there!  I know God placed them there as a sign for me that Aunt Zippy is alive in heaven with Him!”  My husband laughed and teased me, “Mommy must have had a dream kids” he said.  They laughed a bit too, while I insisted I wasn’t dreaming, and that I knew what I saw. I even suggested my husband turn around and go back to see it himself, but he didn’t.

I guess I must have dozed off, but shortly after I was awakened by my children hollering “Mommy!  Look!  Look!  Look out the window!  Look at all of the sunflowers mommy!”  I looked and couldn’t BELIEVE what my eyes were seeing!  The entire roadside for about a mile or so was FULL OF SUNFLOWERS!  Amazing!  I couldn’t believe it!  They were soooo beautiful!  God is so good!  He answered my prayer, and tears were flowing, as I was knowing…my aunt Zippy was in heaven!  God is faithful!

I called my cousin Paul and shared with him.  I just wanted others to have the peace that was flooding my heart in knowing she was with God!    He seemed subdued, and a little skeptical, but was happy for me.  I can’t describe to you the depth of my joy!  I was thrilled my children and husband witnessed it too.  WOW GOD!  And just like God, when we finally pulled into our driveway of our Virginia home, after 2 days of driving, guess what was there at our front door, welcoming us?  Yep.  You guessed it.  The biggest, largest sunflower bloom you ever saw, growing in our flower garden next to our front steps, with its petals wide open.  I’ve never planted sunflowers there before.  It wasn’t growing when we left.  It was heaven-sent, with arms wide open, welcoming us home.  Our sunflower miracle!

Image