Worried and Troubled About Many Things

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“And Jesus answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things.”
‭‭Luke‬ ‭10:41‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

How many of us stay busy because we believe it means we are doing the Lord’s work? I can raise my hand, guilty as charged. Luke 10 is about two sisters, Martha and  Mary. The two women learned that Jesus was going to visit their home. This immediately set an expectation that they had to ready the house, at least that is what Martha thought. On the other hand, Mary thought – what an opportunity. When he arrived, she perched herself at Jesus’ foot breathing in His every word, loving the feeling of his presence. Depending upon where we are in life, we will become a Martha or Mary. But, the Lord is not asking us to prepare things for or around him. The Lord does not want us to worry, or fret over the issues that surround us. He wants us to still ourselves, feel his love, and spend time in His Holy Presence.

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Like Martha we become distracted. We lose sight of the purpose, our dependence upon the Lord, and our desire to listen to Him, learn the practicality of the Word and then share the Good News. But, we are not wholly Martha, we also embrace the wonderment of Mary, waiting to serve, listen and learn.

We are told in John 15, the Lord is the true vine and God is the vinedresser. The vine cannot bear fruit by itself. In other words, we cannot bear fruit by ourselves. Without sitting at the Lords’ feet, we will wither. We need to be still and listen, and not become distracted by the things around us. The scripture reads, “He who abides in Me, and I in him bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.” The Holy Spirit must dwell in us. It is His blood that flows through our veins, our heart, and our soul. The scripture further shares, “If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered. Mary scurried about during the visit reading the house, preparing a meal, and doing all of the ceremonial things. Her sister Mary wanted more of Jesus. She wanted to breathe Him in, be a student of his Word and spend as much time as possible with Him; food was not important, a clean home was not important, spending time at the foot of our Lord was all that mattered. She knew she would be stronger for it, that sharing her story about what she learned that day with others would bear fruit.

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When we feel the urge to become busy rather than sit still, it is more than a tick, it is a red alert.

Mary and Martha clearly loved Christ; we can gain more from this story, we can look at this in the scope of Spiritual Warfare. When we feel the Mary-Martha tug, we should acknowledge that it is often the devil trying to distract us and delay us from spending time with the Lord. His purpose is to kill, steal,  and destroy. He wants to kill our relationship with the Lord, steal our time with the Lord and destroy our hope to reach heaven.

Like so many, I try to stay alert. I know spending time with the Lord every day is imperative, yet there are times when I become enveloped in the stuff around me. But as the scripture says, only one thing is needed, not the fluff and circumstance, only one thing, to spend quality time with the Lord.

In the end, we must ask ourselves when we are falling into oblivion, who do we belong to, where do we reside?  Do we respond to Jesus’ invitation like Martha or like Mary? Will we wither or bear fruit?

ReBlog –  https://wp.me/p98Coa-vy  copy and paste on your site.
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Images – Google Images

Scriptures – YouVersion.Bible.com

References/Resources – Finding Rest In a Busy World Devotional, Bible.com. Study – http://www.susannarjala.com

Thank you for visiting my Young Christian Warriors site and dailyinspiration-lisasthoughts.com, at the moment there is some duplication. I am working on merging the two to create one great site. Please bear with me through this process.

Where is Your Focus?

“So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
2 Corinthians‬ ‭4:18‬‬

This scripture spoke to my inner being, reminding me that I can get caught up in the things of this world if I do not stay vigilant. It is easy to allow our carnal man to prosper. All of our senses are tuned into the shiny things of this earth that are constantly bombarding us. We are in a constant state of warfare; tug and war. Our choices are this world or the heavenlies.

We need to stay in tune and shift our focus. The battle rages throughout our lives. God gave us the freedom to choose how we live our lives. Earlier in life, I decided that my purpose was to reach the Kingdom, this meant that I needed to make decisions to walk away from some things, refocus, and galvanize others. in short, reaching my spiritual destination is the focus of my life.

Our eternal goal relies on our contemplation, prayer, praise, and worship, which guides us and makes us better. When we replace the object of the goal, then the things we formerly worshiped become benefits of our work and not the object of our work.

I’ve learned that focusing on things, as the end-all, is a form of idol worship; things, such as a new outfit, car, new apartment, home, ultimate vacation, and career ascension,  are temporal and lose their value over time, my focus is acquiring eternal life in heaven.

As sinners, we cannot fall prey to delusion and the idols of this world. Satan will use everything available to prevent the gospel from shining, from politics to morals, to seemingly innocuous music. Between Satan and our sin nature, we are constantly battling to live in the spiritual realm, we must always stay alert, as Christians, must focus on the Word to avoid the traps of the evil one while demonstrating the virtues of Christ in our daily lives. Focusing on the Good News prepares us for our eternal life while living on earth. It makes us better people, spouses, parents, friends, and God’s helpers. Hold on to instruction, do not let it go, guard it well, for it is your life. Do not set foot on the path of the wicked or walk in the way of evildoers. Avoid it, do not travel on it turn from it and go on your way. The path of the righteous is like the morning sun shining ever brighter till the full light of day. But the way of the wicked is like deep darkness; they do not know what makes them stumble. My son, pay attention to what I say turn your ear to my words. Do not let them out of your sight, keep them within your heart; for they are life to those who find them and health to one’s whole body. Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. Keep your mouth free of perversity; keep corrupt talk far from your lips. Let your eyes look straight ahead; fix your gaze directly before you. Give careful thought to the[a] paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways. Do not turn to the right or the left; keep your foot from evil.
Proverbs 4:13-27 NIV

Images – Google Images

Scripture – Biblegateway.com

Thank you for visiting my Young Christian Warriors site and dailyinspiration-lisasthoughts.com, at the moment there is some duplication. I am working on merging the two to create one great site. Please bear with me through this process.

Prayers Break Through the Second Heaven

Reblog, March 2018

Your world was calm and settled, you’re an effectual, fervent prayer warrior, all is good and then chaos breaks out in your life. This is an indication that your prayers are getting through! Praying is not for the faint of heart. It is a battlefield.

When we pray, our prayers rise through the heavens to reach God’s ears. When He hears our prayers, He sends down blessings. Praying is warfare and in the case of Daniel, blessings were held up in the second heaven while Michael the Archangel fought the demons that were holding back blessings headed to earth.

“In the morning, O LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.” Psalm 5:3 NKJV

The second heaven can be considered Satan’s headquarters. From this position he and his fallen angels do everything they can to bring destruction on the earth and resist the purposes of God’s grace, blessings, and mercy.

Yes, heavens plural, there are three heavens. The first is the visible heaven, it is our Blessingsatmosphere, the second heaven is the evil ones’ headquarters, and the third heaven is where God lives. (Derek Prince, pp 128)

The sole purpose of the evil one is to kill, steal and destroy. If prayers are breaking through the heavens and people are being blessed, the evil one in an uproar. We (prayer warriors) become the enemy. Satan doesn’t focus on his followers, those who live a worldly life, he focuses on God’s people, those working to advance the kingdom of God.

Satan is 100% pure evil, and he has a plan to destroy our lives. Satan is our enemy, like it or not. The battle is between good and evil, and we are the prize. Satan desires to keep us from all that God wants for us. He is the enemy of all people, followers of Christ or not.

“The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy.” John 10:10 NKJV

As our prayers are being answered, he goes on the offensive and stirs up the atmosphere around us. He manipulates circumstances and situations against us. He may cause friction, chaos, loss, and illness, anything that can deter us from our mission. This is deception, he causes us to use our energy to address the things he created around us to dilute and weaken our impact as Prayer Warriors by disrupting our persistent prayer time.

It is our responsibility to learn to discern the battleground and figure out our strategy to succeed. Do we give up our time in prayer with the Lord to address the chaos the evil one created around us, or do we get up earlier, use our lunch time and go to bed a little later to maintain our prayer time? We have to learn to distinguish with our spiritual ears and eyes what is moving around us. “Discernment for the believer is seeing and understanding as God sees and understands. It is the ability to make godly judgments and right appraisals.” (Charles Stanley, pp 53)

When the world turns upside down, take time to discern what is happening and how you will approach it. Do not allow the evil one to dissuade you from your prayer time. We cannot afford to be deceived and sidelined. Our prayers matter and people lives are affected by our praying. Each of our prayers is requesting blessings and resolve to life’s situations and circumstances. The failure to pray for others and you leaves everyone prey to the evil ones’ plan for our lives, to remain slaves to him and the world.

Do not be deceived, always look through your spiritual lens and cast the evil ones’ efforts as far as the east is from the west, Psalm 103:12. Stay focused on your prayers until you see the blessings manifest. They may manifest in a recognizable way, or may take another form as God sees fit to advance you into the kingdom. Our prayers may be answered right away, sometime in the future, or not at all, but every prayer has impact and outcomes. We may see some answers to prayers and may not see others. It is all dependent upon how God sees fit to include us in the blessings.

The most important thing is to never stop praying until God leads you to do so. Just make certain you can discern who you are listening to. See my earlier Post, The Voice of God.

Resources

Books
Prince, Derek. Secrets of a Prayer Warrior
Stanley, Charles. When the Enemy Strikes

Website-Blog

Change Your Filter, Hear His Voice

Thank you for visiting my Young Christian Warriors site and dailyinspiration-lisasthoughts.com, at the moment there is some duplication. I am working on merging the two to create one great site. Please bear with me through this process.

Refuge Is Always Near

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I find comfort in knowing that when things become hectic, our God gives us strength and resolve. He welcomes us into His refuge and settles us in a calm, peaceful state.

His refuge is a place we flee to in times of trouble, danger, anxiety,  or simply uncertainty. Generally speaking, if we are fleeing to a place of safety, we are fleeing from a place of discomfort and insecurity. God is aware of our plights in life and created a place of strength and security.

It is ours to seek when we choose. Our level of discomfort does not determine when we can access His refuge. It is always available to us.  We were not created to live life using our own strength; we are created to need God’s strength. We can call upon the Lord to protect us and strengthen our resolve at any time, day or night. Our faith unlocks the door to His refuge.

According to Bible scholars, the term refuge means a place we flee from, and a place we flee to. To broaden the connotation,

we flee from:

~Misunderstandings
~Obstacles
~Provocation
~Change
~Sin
~Sorrow
~Disappointment
~Uncertainty
~Peril

and we flee to:

~A safe place
~A place of trust
~A secure place
~A shelter
~A sanctuary
~An asylum

Prayer

God, thank you for making Yourself known to me. Thank you for your power, Your might, Your Strength. Help me to never doubt Your strength but to rely on it every minute of every day. Please continue to reveal Yourself to me. In Jesus Name, Amen.

Images – YouVersion.Bible.com

Resource/References – Biblestudytool.com; 100 Names of God, Daily Devotional. Christopher D. Hudson. 2015 (Prayer paraphrased.)

Thank you for visiting my Young Christian Warriors site and dailyinspiration-lisasthoughts.com. At the moment there is some duplication. I am working on merging the two to create one great site. Please bear with me through this process.

Looking Back – Satan’s Web of Deception, Self Abuse

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I am currently studying a five-day Devotional entitled, Don’t Look Back, day four to be exact. Last week I shared an earlier devotional on the same subject. You’ll recognize the red title if you look it up.

Today, the lesson is focusing on how looking back feeds the flesh. Looking back is a form of self-abuse in itself, but it also causes you to return to your past. The reason we look back is because we find comfort in our experiences. God instructed Moses to lead the Israelites out of Egypt. Once out, they no longer had the comfort of food or shelter. These creature comforts were important to them and somewhat balanced the harsh abuse they experienced as slaves.

When you look back do you look for the comforts often derived from a negative experience? Did your spouse, partner or parent mistreat you and then lavish you with gifts? Did people befriend you to gain what you have? Where you punished and then fed well to offset the punishment? Did your boss promise you the raise and then give it to someone else, and placate you? These are all past experiences that people choose to recall because, despite, the abuse – they were familiar, and oddly enough safe memories of experiences past.

The Israelites blamed Moses for the discomfort they were experiencing in the wilderness. In Exodus 17:3 NLT, they cried, “Why did you bring us out of Egypt? Are you trying to kill us, our children, and our livestock with thirst.”

They had little food during the wilderness period and complained about the good things they had in Egypt, such as good and shelter. They cried, “We remember the fish we used to eat for free in Egypt. And we had all the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions, and garlic we wanted. But now our appetites are gone. All we ever see is this manna!” (Numbers 11:5-6 NLT.)

The crux of this story is that their comfort was attached to the abuse they received as slaves. Your story may not be fraught with physical or emotional abuse, but looking back instead of forward is abuse in itself. As I shared in the earlier Post, you cannot look in the rearview mirror and focus on what is behind you, and expect to move forward and avoid potholes at the same time. There are many scriptures in The Bible where God instructs us to have faith and look ahead. One of the most notable is Lots’ wife’s experience. The angels instructed them to leave Sodom, and leave their belongings behind, and God would spare their lives. They were also instructed not to look back at the destruction cast down on the city. Lots’ wife defied God’s command, looked back anyway and was transformed into a pillar of salt.

When we experience life’s challenges we can do one of two things, operate in the natural or choose to follow the Lords instructions. It is safe to say that most of us have not learned from the experiences God has shared about looking back. We still seek the (dis)comfort of our past because we find relief in those experiences. God continues to impress that while the transition may be difficult, the unknown is not to be feared because He is with you. He provided the Israelites with daily manna and he will do the same for you. Consider the transition lessons in faith, dependence, and obedience. God cannot guide you if you will not look forward and follow His instructions. Times may be tough, but provisions are provided, just as the manna was provided daily. Faith in God is the key to transition. We often find ourselves in the midst of the storm because we do not focus on God and His ability to change the circumstances. Our career advancement stalls because we look at our past and what we have accomplished, or not, and not what God will provide. Our relationships fail because we look at past experiences that shackled us, for whatever reason, and not at the strength of our current relationship. We look at our neighborhood and want more, but feel we cannot attain it because nothing in our past demonstrates the ability to have more. We look back most often when we are not satisfied with our life.

Most importantly, we look back to when we were not saved, before we received Jesus Christ as our Lord and Saviour, a time when we relied on ourselves, when we managed on our own, made mistakes, failed and wallowed in misery, rather than looking to God for direction, depending upon Him, and being obedient to the Word.

Satan uses the deception of looking back as a control mechanism. He encourages us to back at the past, relive the experiences that are wrapped in abuse and find comfort in slavery. He wants us to remain enslaved where we will never experience the blessings God wants to bestow upon us. He wants us paralyzed, cemented in salt, forever frozen in time.

God has given us free-will, liberty to choose. We choose to look back or focus on the present and what lies ahead. We choose the known and the uncertain. It is safe to say, life is not static, we all experience change and challenges, the key is that the challenges are often the very lessons we need to prepare us for the next step in our walk with Christ. Looking back retards our growth as Christians. Rather than looking back, take Jesus’ hand and walk with Him. The unknown is less frightening when we grasp the hand of a loving parent.

Don’t look back for a sense of comfort. Look to the future, live in the present, and God will lead you into your blessings. God will never leave you or forsake you. The chorus to a Sunday hymn, In The Garden, sums up our relationship with our Lord, Saviour and Father:

And he walks with me
And He talks with me,
And He tells me I am his own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.

Serenity Prayer7

Images – Google Images; Biblestudytools.com;Bibleverseimages.com

Scriptures – Biblegateway.com

Resource/References – YouVersion.bible.com;Lyrics, In the Garden,Google.com

Visit my Young Christian Warriors site. The earliest Posts were written to help parents guide and train their children to access the Word of God to direct their steps. Later Posts were written for everyone, though I believe the Posts to parents can serve as reminders for all ages.

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