Friday, February 3, 2017

Sanctuary of Tranquility: Reaction is Everything!

Sanctuary of Tranquility: Reaction is Everything!: A few years ago I had a very strange falling out with someone I cared a great deal about. It hurt my feelings and my pride and happened...

Reaction is Everything!




A few years ago I had a very strange falling out with someone I cared a great deal about. It hurt my feelings and my pride and happened at a terrible time in my life. For months afterward, I would see him out and about, sometimes alone and other times on what appeared to be a date.    It hurt my heart.                                                   One evening after such an encounter I cried out to Jesus, who through experience, I know to be totally sovereign, "Why do you keep making me see that, if you love me the way you say you do, you wouldn't want to put my heart through that." 
I was surprised by his near immediate response; a response that revealed a great deal to me about my precious Jesus. His answer was this, 

" My dear heart, it was not for you to see him, but for him to see  you." 

I have thought about that response many times. Jesus shared a part of his character with me that night that was much more important for my own personal growth than the temporary comfort for my hurt feelings that I was seeking. He taught me that HE is always looking at our reactions because those reactions reveal the spontaneous truth as it flows directly from our hearts and that is the knowledge he is seeking concerning His sheep. 

Proverbs 17:3 The fining pot is for silver, and the furnace for gold: but the Lord trieth the hearts 

After thinking about his response for some time I have come to understand that Jesus is not in the business of making people feel comfortable. He want's our hearts. He watches as we ignore the things we should and could do for others and the things we choose to do which only serve to harden our own hearts, and He takes note of our attitude about those things.

How do we react when someone we know is suffering; do we avoid them? Are we secretly delighted? Do we feel sadness in our hearts and try to help them or pray for them, or do we simply shrug our shoulders and go on with our lives? 

I shared my story and my thoughts regarding it with a dear friend, who's husband is a pastor. I explained to her that Jesus helped me to understand that he is always looking for reactions from us. She said it reminded her of a man she and her husband had met some years back. The man was one of sizable wealth, yet he had felt pressed to do mission work. He was having some difficulty getting responses to programs he applied for so he asked Jesus what the problem was; why was he being overlooked for something he was dreaming about?  Jesus told him that if he were serious about being a missionary he needed to give his money away. In the man's earthly thinking, the money would provide him the opportunity to help others more. But God had other plans, He wanted to see this man's reaction to his simply bringing the gospel to the table.
This account, in turn, reminded me of an incident I had heard of where a woman from the United States had gone to a third world country on a missions trip wearing her enormous diamond wedding ring and diamond earrings and it made me think of the famous quote by Carl W. Buehner; "They may forget what you said — but they will never forget how you made them feel." 
Without knowing the circumstances it's difficult for us to know what any one's motives, thoughts or feelings are, but for Jesus, it is nothing, He knows.He always knows the truth.   


 Search me [thoroughly], O God, and know my heart; Test me and know my anxious thoughts, and see if there is any wicked or hurtful way in me, And lead me in an everlasting way. 


Jesus walks with us daily, listening in on our conversations with others. He makes note of those who feel convicted and those who do not. He doesn't care if we're rich or poor, handsome or ugly. if we look like a fashion plate or if we are dressed in garments that came from a bag of rags. 
He doesn't give one iota about big noses, fat bellies or stringy hair...what matters to Jesus is our reactions to life and the people around us. Those reactions show Him the condition of our hearts. 

1 Samuel 16:7 But the Lord said to Samuel  "Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart."


What's inside of your heart?



Wednesday, December 14, 2016

His Desire to Give Us An Abundant Life

2 Corinthians 4:13(MSG) 

13-15 We’re not keeping this quiet, not on your life. Just like the psalmist who wrote, “I believed it, so I said it,” we say what we believe.

How often do we speak prophetic words into the universe concerning our own lives? 
We speak of the plans we have for ourselves and we speak of things and people we want no part of. 
We make proclamations concerning our lives totally convinced that we know exactly what is best for us; what we should and shouldn't have, what we want and don't want. We believe in our hearts and heads that being alive gives us the right to make bold, important decisions concerning our futures with little to no thought to what our Heavenly Father planned for our lives before time began.

We arrogantly blaze our own trails until things don't go the way we hoped, and then we ask God why He is denying us happiness. 
We allow the disappointments we created for ourselves to incite bitterness and regret instead of the joy we should and could have experienced if we had only allowed Him to take the lead. It is our own stubbornness and arrogance that trips us up, not God, never God.  

As I reflect on my own life there were times when I charged ahead, ignoring the feelings of anxiety the Holy Spirit was giving me only to discover, down the road that my impetuous behavior had been responsible for my own dilemma, my own failure, my own heartache. 
Sadly those very impetuous actions spill over into the lives of other people; our friends and families...and of our children.  

I remember the anxious feelings I had before I got married. I have since learned that when He gives me that restless, anxious feeling in my heart ad soul, I need to spend time with Him in prayer. 
All of His messages to us are passed along with great love, affection, and wisdom concerning our lives. We love Him because He first loved us, right? My love and gratitude for Him is so great that although it's difficult some days, I only want what he wants for me. If he wants me to move, I'll move. If He want's me to change jobs, I will gladly change jobs. He is forever working behind the scenes to improve our lives. Sometimes it doesn't make sense at the time but I know without a shadow of a doubt that He loves me so much that He wants only what is best for me. Through prayer I have come to realize that the man I marry has to love God more than he loves me because when God whispers to him that I am the one, he won't have even one moment's hesitation, he will want to marry me because it is what God wants for his life as well as mine. I remind myself every day that I am nothing without Him. He is my beginning and my end ...He is my first and last breath.  

Jeremiah 29:11(ESV) 11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. 


We have no right to deny ourselves happiness because of the poor choices we have made in our past. We have inadequate, clout to make decisions concerning our lives when the fact is, our lives actually belong to Him, the one who made us. Our Father in Heaven wants us to have a life filled with good days and an abundance of every good thing. 
So the words that challenge His marvelous plans for our lives must stop! Instead, we must boldly proclaim: "In the name of Jesus, I command blessings, favor, health, prosperity, protection, dominion and power to fill my life! God's words tell me that the good things are already promised, they are already here. I, therefore pronounce my life blessed. I pronounce my life prosperous. I pronounce my life great. Darkness and gloom, poverty and sickness, defeat and depression will not be in my life."

This will be ours when we give Him the power to make all things come together for our good....



Wednesday, October 26, 2016

A Fight to the Finish

"Let us Run, with steady and active persistence, 
the appointed course of the race set before us." Hebrews 12:1

When I think of all the moments in my life that God prompted me to do something and I didn't, it makes me kind of sad and a bit disappointed in myself.

 I missed out on something truly wonderful because I didn't  listen for whatever reason; embarrassment, pride, insecurity, or in some cases unsure of where the prompting was coming from. 

In any case I missed the chance...missed the opportunity...missed the boat. Will I ever get the chance to do some of those things again? Who knows, that would be up to God. 



Like so many others; and I do believe most of us are similar, I miss out daily on the Holy Spirit speaking to me. He speaks to us in so many ways...every day. Through other people, books, dreams, shows on television; nothing is impossible for Him. 
He loves his children and wants us to all have wonderful lives, lives  full of joy and when we don't listen, we do miss out on joy. Someone told me one time that if it is in your heart to do something it can't be wrong and I believe that with all of my heart and I try to follow that advice every day. When God prompts us to do something, no matter how difficult it is we must ask ourselves, is it is Biblical?  Is it kind? Will it be beneficial? 

 If the answer is yes, no matter how frightening it seems at the moment, we need to obey. For He is encouraging us to do something that will better prepare us for other things down the road. 

This video from Beth Moore is a wonderful example of God prompting us by overwhelming our hearts. Beth has a flair for the drama which is both unique and lovable. If you have ever experienced anything like this you will easily relate. Sometimes you have no time to think about if you should or shouldn't do something and other times, if we wait, it will be to late, and we miss out on the opportunity that our Father has given us.  



Ephesians 6:10-18(MSG) 

10-12 And that about wraps it up. God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that we’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels.
13-18 Be prepared. You’re up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over but the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other’s spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out.

Blessings to you as you run your course.













A Fight to the Finish

"Let us Run, with steady and active persistence, 
the appointed course of the race set before us." Hebrews 12:1

When I think of all the moments in my life that God prompted me to do something and I didn't, it makes me kind of sad and a bit disappointed in myself.

 I missed out on something truly wonderful because I didn't  listen for whatever reason; embarrassment, pride, insecurity, or in some cases unsure of where the prompting was coming from. 

In any case I missed the chance...missed the opportunity...missed the boat. Will I ever get the chance to do some of those things again? Who knows, that would be up to God. 




Like so many others; and I do believe most of us are similar, I miss out daily on the Holy Spirit speaking to me. He speaks to us in so many ways...every day. Through other people, books, dreams, shows on television; nothing is impossible for Him. 
He loves his children and wants us to all have wonderful lives, lives  full of joy and when we don't listen, we do miss out on joy. Someone told me one time that if it is in your heart to do something it can't be wrong and I believe that with all of my heart and I try to follow that advice every day. When God prompts us to do something, no matter how difficult it is we must ask ourselves, is it is Biblical?  Is it kind? Will it be beneficial? 

 If the answer is yes, no matter how frightening it seems at the moment, we need to obey. For He is encouraging us to do something that will better prepare us for other things down the road. 

This video from Beth Moore is a wonderful example of God prompting us by overwhelming our hearts. Beth has a flair for the drama which is both unique and lovable. If you have ever experienced anything like this you will easily relate. Sometimes you have no time to think about if you should or shouldn't do something and other times, if we wait, it will be to late, and we miss out on the opportunity that our Father has given us.  



Ephesians 6:10-18(MSG) 

10-12 And that about wraps it up. God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that we’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels.
13-18 Be prepared. You’re up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over but the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other’s spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out.

Blessings to you as you run your course.













Monday, September 19, 2016

end times?


I keep seeing references to Esther 4:14 
"Born for such a time as this" 
These are words that could, in fact, have been applicable to various times in history. Beliefs about the world's impending end are at the foundation of Christianity. Jesus, himself taught that the end was near. In the book of Mark, Jesus promised spectacular events will occur in the world's last days. These events include the sun being darkened, the moon covered or turned off as to prevent it from giving light, and stars will start falling from heaven. When this happens, Jesus claimed he would be coming through the clouds with great power and glory and he would be sending angels to gather the chosen from all over the earth.
Before this happens, there will be other changes, changes we are seeing in today's world. 
2 Timothy 3:5- But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.

Matthew 24:10-12 “And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets  (already present) will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.”

The Olivet Discource, is the end times according to Jesus and is worth the time to read. There are many scriptures, as well as the current events in the news, which match the descriptions in the Bible perfectly, all adding up to one thing, Jesus will be returning soon...(or at least sooner than when those words were first spoken).
There are those who say He has already returned; I certainly hope not, because if this is post- tribulation, I am really disappointed. Most of us are waiting on the Lord and many wonders when and some make an effort to predict the day and hour, something Jesus didn't even know himself. 

Mark 13:32 "But concerning the day or that hour, no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father."

1 Thessalonians 5:1-9:1 
Now, brothers, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, 2 for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. 3 While people are saying, "Peace and safety," destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. 4 But you, brothers, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief. 5 You are all sons of the light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. 6 So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-controlled. 7 For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. 8 But since we belong to the day, let us be self-controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet. 9 For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.

"Wow! For me, that all means that  Jesus waits also for the Father to say "Today Son, go get your bride today" ... Matthew 24:36 (ESV) ". #Jesus #Lion of the Tribe of Judah our soon & coming King who is Without Rival!

No One Knows That Day and Hour

36 “But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only. 37 For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. 38 For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, 39 and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. 40 Then two men will be in the field; one will be taken and one left. 41 Two women will be grinding at the mill; one will be taken and one left. 42 Therefore, stay awake, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming. 43 But know this, that if the master of the house had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and would not have let his house be broken into. 44 Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.


The second coming is not going to be the picnic some believe it will be. For many, grasping the concept that "Every Knee Shall Bow" is incomprehensible. Bowing will not only apply to those of us who have accepted Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior, it will apply to every last person on this planet. We will all have to be accountable for everything we have ever done in our lives. That's huge! Every lie, every deception, every time we were mean to someone, every time we ignored his promptings to give more, do more, be more. How we treated others, including and especially, our parents and the strangers who we didn't realize were angels. 


Hebrews 13:2(ESV)  Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.



With all of this in mind, what are we doing to prepare for is return? Are we participating in Kingdom work when he invites us to do so, or are we ignoring His requests, out of fear or selfishness? Are we using the spiritual and other gifts he gave us or ignoring them in an effort to make more money or just do what we want? 
What will Jesus find here on earth when He arrives? If He suddenly knocked on your door, what would He find you doing? 

Luke 18:7-8  And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will give justice to them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?”

Would you even let Him in or would you make excuses and ask Him to come back on an appointed day at an arranged time?
If you did invite Him in, would you be proud of the things He would see, or would you be making excuses?
What's on your bookshelves, and what might you be listening to on your stereo or watching on your television or what would he find on your computer that would convict you? 
Are we worthy of His presence, or do we just waste one day after another? Do we put off reading the scriptures, studying His words with our families and friends? Do we surround ourselves with people who are worthy of us, as well as Him? Do we truly want to be a part of His world...His Kingdom or not? 

If we were arrested and charged with being Christians, would there be enough evidence for a court of law to declare us guilty? 

Romans 14:11(ESV)  for it is written, “As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God.”

If you're not prepared, there's no time like the present...

False prophets video is worth a listen, even if you don't agree with its entirety.