New Friends Friday

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And so off they went to Antioch. On arrival, they gathered the church and read the letter. The people were greatly relieved and pleased. Judas and Silas, good preachers both of them, strengthened their new friends with many words of courage and hope. Then it was time to go home. They were sent off by their new friends with laughter and embraces all around to report back to those who had sent them. Acts 15:30-33 Message

You’re probably wondering where I’m going with this, right? It’s Friday, the end of the week and I don’t want to go too long and lose your attention. But the beginning of this chapter talks about how the church was growing and all of the non-Jews were coming into the Kingdom of God. Some of the born again Pharisee’s thought that these new believers needed to adhere to the letter of the law and be circumcised like the rest of them.

After much heated arguments, Peter stood up and said, “And God, who can’t be fooled by any pretense on our part but always knows a person’s thoughts, gave them the Holy Spirit exactly as he gave him to us. He treated the outsiders exactly as he treated us, beginning at the very center of who they were and working from that center outward, cleaning up their lives as they trusted and believed him.

“So why are you now trying to out-god God, loading these new believers down with rules that crushed our ancestors and crushed us, too? Don’t we believe that we are saved because the Master Jesus amazingly and out of sheer generosity moved to save us just as he did those from beyond our nation? So what are we arguing about?”

So that’s what the letter was all about. That’s what they took to the new believers. That’s why they were so greatly relieved and pleased. Wouldn’t you be? Just knowing that it was not about works, rules and laws, rather about what Jesus did to pay the price so that we could walk in the blessings without doing anything. Simply believing on Jesus and walking it out with the Holy Spirit.

Personally, I see this happening in so many churches today. Arguing that people need to change or we’ll have to ask them to leave. Just because they’re not doing it the way you think they should, doesn’t mean they’re doing it wrong. Let the Holy Spirit do His perfectly gentle work in each heart and you, well you just work on you!

Let’s remember that He who began a good work in me is faithful to complete it. All by Himself. He doesn’t need your help. Step away and rejoice in how God is choosing to use people in unconventional ways to do amazing things in the earth. It may not be your style but it’s someones style and the God I serve will go to the uttermost part of the earth  doing new things just to save the one.

Have a Great Weekend!

Sandy G

Living In The Shadow

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When you sit enthroned under the shadow of Shaddai,  you are hidden in the strength of God Most High. He’s the hope that holds me and the Stronghold to shelter me, the only God for me, and my great confidence. Psalm 91:1-2 TPT

a. Enthroned-Or “O, you who sits enthroned.” The Hebrew word yashab is often associated with one seated as royalty. It is translated in Ezekiel 27:8 as “leaders or rulers.”

b. Shaddai-(šadday) is taken from a Hebrew root word with many expressive meanings. It can mean “God of the Mountain, God the Destroyer of Enemies, God the Self-Sufficient One, God the Nurturer of Babies, God the Almighty.”

c. Hidden-Or “I endure through the night.” See Job 39:28, where the same Hebrew word is used for an eagle passing the night on the high cliffs.

In reading the footnotes that were furnished with these two verses, I wish to take some liberties so that you can have a greater understanding of how you should see yourself in this passage. Ready?

When you sit as royalty under the shadow of the God of the Mountain, the Destroyer of Enemies, the Self-Sufficient One, the Nurturer of Babies, God the Almighty, you endure through the night like an eagle passing the night on the high cliffs in the strength of God Most High. He’s the hope that holds me and the Stronghold to shelter me, the only God for me, and my great confidence. Sandy’s expanded translation.

Here’s what I’ve come to understand about how God views us. 1 Peter 2:9 says; But you are God’s chosen treasure—priests who are kings, a spiritual “nation” set apart as God’s devoted ones. He called you out of darkness to experience his marvelous light, and now he claims you as his very own. He did this so that you would broadcast his glorious wonders throughout the world.

If you don’t see yourself as God does, you’re simply living beneath your true identity. If you’ve chosen to believe in God, you are no longer of this earth, you belong to Heavens Kingdom and have access to everything Jesus had/has access to. All power has been given to you! Yes, that’s right. You were created for greatness.

When you truly trust in God you won’t be shaken by world events, political mahem, daily news reports or family disfunctions. The foundation you stand on is unmoving. The peace you posess can’t be penetrated. Your future is secure. If you don’t have that peace, if your world is easily shaken and you’re unsure of your future, place your hand in His and remain in His shadow.

Until Tomorrow,

Sandy G

Utter & Mutter

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Joshua 1:8 — “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night…”

Genesis 24:63—Isaac went out to meditate in the field toward evening; and he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, camels were coming.

Psalm 27:4—One thing I have asked from the Lord, that I shall seek: That I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, To behold the beauty of the Lord And to meditate in His temple.

The word “meditate” in English means to ponder, but in Hebrew, it is the word hagah, which means to utter or mutter under your breath. In other words, when you meditate on God’s Word, you speak forth or confess His Word instead of just giving it mental assent.

There’s something about this I can’t shake and usually it’s because it’s not just for me, it’s for someone who will be reading this today. There is power in what you’re doing. If you’re in agreement with the Word of God and are constantly muttering it under your breath, keep doing it!

It may not have happened yet, but it will. How do I know that? 2 Corinthians 1:20 (TPT) says, “For all of God’s promises find their “yes” of fulfillment in him. And as his “yes” and our “amen” ascend to God, we bring him glory!”

I am constantly uttering and muttering especially when my mind is under attack. Trust me, my eyes see things and my mind has it’s own translation. My ears hear things and they interpret it into a wild and crazy language.  But in order for my mouth to not come in agreement with what I’ve just seen and heard, I utter and mutter the Word of God until my eyes shift to see what HE sees and my ears only hear what HE says.

Easy? No! He didn’t say it would be easy. But He did say He’d never leave me or forsake me so in the middle of the mess, I just look around and there He is. When I get weary in my battle, He sends His angels to surround me. Do you hear the sword play? That’s not a game, God Himself is my ever present help in time of trouble.

Someone once asked me, “How do you do that? When there’s a situation, you always know exactly what to say!” No my friend, it’s not me, it’s the Spirit of God in me who quickens that Word. Romans 10:8 says that the Word of God is near me, even in my mouth and in my heart. If that’s not uttering and muttering, I don’t know what is.

Don’t stop doing it just because it hasn’t happened yet. Keep speaking in agreement with what the Word says regardless. When the time is right, you will see with your eyes what your heart has known all along.

Until Tomorrow,

Sandy G

 

Pay Attention

At God’s command amazing things happen, wonderful things that we can’t understand. He commands snow to fall on the earth, and sends torrents of drenching rain. Job 37:5-6

The first part of that verse stirred me this morning. It was like He was saying it to me personally, “Pay attention! I’ve commanded the blessing on you and this is one of the ways I’m going to do it.”

I would have missed it if I wasn’t at the right place, at the right time. I thought I was going the wrong way because it was strange to me. I looked around and nothing was familiar. But had I not gone in that direction, I would have missed the set up for blessing.

Never allow what others think, keep you from being who God called you to be. Stop trying to be like other people, to imitate the gift that’s in them. You have been chosen for a specific task. The success of your assignment hinges on your ability to obey the direct instructions of God.

Are you listening? If you don’t take time to listen, you will never hear. If you never hear, you will continue on the same path you’re on, possibly going in the wrong direction.

Find a quiet place, turn off the noise and distractions, worship the Lord and give Him thanks, then with no agenda, no prayer requests, just wait for Him to draw near and speak to your spirit. It will be the most productive time of your entire day.

Father, guide me as You promised and don’t let sin rule over me. I will acknowledge you in all my ways for You always direct my paths. My steps have been ordered by You because You know the desire of my heart is to serve You. I trust in You when things don’t make sense. I trust in You when the shaking starts and when it stops. You are my hope and the strength of my life. Keep talking, Lord. I’m listening. It’s in Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

Until Tomorrow,

Sandy G

Choose Your Stone

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David said to the Philistine, “You come to me using sword, spear, and javelin. But I come to you in the name of the Lord All-Powerful, the God of the armies of Israel. You have said bad things about him.  Today the Lord will let me defeat you. I will kill you. I will cut off your head and feed your body to the birds and wild animals. And we will do the same thing to all the other Philistines too. Then all the world will know there is a God in Israel. All the people gathered here will know that the Lord doesn’t need swords or spears to save people. The battle belongs to the Lord, and he will help us defeat all of you.” 1 Samuel 17:45-47 ERV

David was just a young boy when he said these words to a giant, a man who had caused all of Israel to freak out for quite some time. But David knew the power of His God, mighty to save and deliver. How did he learn these things about God? In a valley while tending sheep.

Perhaps you’re in a valley tending sheep right now. This is the time when you learn to lean into the mighty power of God to deliver, save and keep. This is the time when you learn who God is and what He’s capable of. There may be a battle you’re about to face that will test what you know about Him. When you face your giant, remember what you learned in the valley. He will never leave you, He’s always got your back.

He didn’t say you would never go through hard places, but He did say He’d be with you. He never said there would be no battles, but He did say He would fight them for you. This might be the day when you face your enemy and say with a loud voice, “You can mock me, but you cannot mock my God and get away with it. He is well able to deliver you into my hand!”

Don’t let that giant of opposition convince you he’s bigger than your God. Don’t allow your lack of finances to stop you from going after your dream. If God gave you the dream, He will make a way for it to come to pass. He didn’t need a sword to overcome Goliath, He only needed a boy who trusted in His ability and not his own.

Now, go choose your stone and when you throw it, it will not miss it’s mark.

Until Tomorrow,

Sandy G

Foundation Friday

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Everyone who hears my teaching and applies it to his life can be compared to a wise man who built his house on an unshakable foundation. When the rains fell and the flood came, with fierce winds beating upon his house, it stood firm because of its strong foundation. Matthew 7:24-25

This week may have shaken you but guess what? You’re still standing! Looks to me like perhaps you’re one of the wise ones who have actually applied what you’ve heard. Being a doer instead of just a hearer makes all the difference in the world. A good foundation does that you know.

The rains may come and they will. the water may rise and threaten to wash away what you’ve build, but guess what? If God himself has to stand as a shield to the floods, He will. If He has to stand between you and the strong winds, He will. If your foundation is built on His Word and you hold fast to the truth of it, nothing can destroy you.

But verses 26-27 say this: But everyone who hears my teaching and does not apply it to his life can be compared to a foolish man who built his house on sand. When it rained and rained and the flood came, with wind and waves beating upon his house, it collapsed and was swept away.

It’s all about application, isn’t it? You can have paint in a paint can but until you apply it to your walls, they won’t be finished. You can have multiple bibles setting around your house but until you know the Word (Jesus) and apply the truth of Him to your life, He remains a story hidden within the book.

Don’t get so caught up with life that you forget the Giver of life. Relationship changes everything.

Until Next Week,

Sandy G

 

Best Father Ever!

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“Do you know of any parent who would give his hungry child, who asked for food, a plate of rocks instead?  Or when asked for a piece of fish, what parent would offer his child a snake instead?  If you, imperfect as you are, know how to lovingly take care of your children and give them what’s best, how much more ready is your heavenly Father to give wonderful gifts to those who ask him?” Matthew 7:9-11 TPT

I am in constant contact with our daughters and enjoy a beautiful relationship with both of them. They’re uniquely gifted and very different. The reason I enjoy each of them, is because I allow them to be who God created them to be. I try not to compare them to each other although it’s difficult at times. There are certain aspects of each of them that I love and that drive me nuts!

As imperfect as I am, I would gladly lay my life down for either of them. If they have a need and I am able, I would do without so that they could have it. When it comes to our children of grandchildren, there is nothing I would withhold from them. They know they only need ask.

Have we become so self-sufficient that we’ve stopped asking our heavenly Father for what we have need of? Unlike us, He’s never lacking in anything. He owns it all and would gladly give to us if we’d just come to Him and ask.

We will never hear the words, “Let me check my bank account first!” No, there are no limits on His supply. What we have need of He’s already provided. Healing-already provided. Houses and lands-already provided. There’s nothing we could ask that would exhaust His supply. It’s His good pleasure to give us the Kingdom.

Perhaps it’s time to change your concept of the Father. He is a giver not a taker. He gave us power over all the power of the enemy, it’s time we learned how to use it. It’s our words that bless or curse, He’s already provided access to every good thing we’ll ever need.

Father, thanks for Your many, many blessings. You have lavishly poured out blessings on us we don’t even have room for them all. Today we choose to walk in those blessings, the ones you refuse to withhold from those who love You. Clean our lenses so that we may see You through the deep love you have for us. It’s in Jesus’ name we pray, Amen

Until Tomorrow

Sandy G