First Hand Knowledge of God

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While he was babbling on like this, a light-radiant cloud enveloped them. As they found themselves buried in the cloud, they became deeply aware of God. Then there was a voice out of the cloud: “This is my Son, the Chosen! Listen to him.” Luke 9:34 MSG
I believe this is a message for us all, “Listen to him!” We seem to want to hear Him through everyone and anyone who is speaking, but God has always been about personal relationships with individuals. He wants to speak to us, commune with us, just as He did with Adam in the garden of Eden at the beginning. In fact, that’s the reason Jesus came and gave His life. To pay the price and redeem us from the curse so we could enjoy fellowship with God once again.
Even though we have people we ‘follow’ who speak into us routinely, it should never take the place of our personal time with God. I may have a unique perspective, but I want my words to instill a desire for the Word, not be a substitute for it. I would stop blogging in a heartbeat if I knew it was that. I want you to know God. Not with second-hand knowledge, but first hand knowledge. I want Him to envelope you in the cloud of His presence so that you’re deeply aware of Him.
I love the words King David said to his son;
“As for you, my son Solomon, know the God of your father, and serve Him with a whole heart and a willing mind; for the Lord searches all hearts, and understands every intent of the thoughts. If you seek Him, He will let you find Him; but if you forsake Him, He will reject you forever.” I Chronicles 28:9
Think about this today, the God of the universe wants you listen to His Son. That’s an invitation you can’t afford to ignore. The searcher of hearts wants you to find Him and He will let you. How about it? Are you in?
Father, I want to know You. Not from how someone else knows You, but to know You deeply for myself. To hear Your voice and feel Your presence as a cloud, wrapped around me like a blanket of love. Change me from the inside out. It’s in Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.
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The F Word

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Now faith brings our hopes into reality and becomes the foundation needed to acquire the things we long for. It is all the evidence required to prove what is still unseen. Hebrews 11:1 TPT

Faith moves God. Think about that for a moment. Faith is a substance big enough to cause the words we speak when we pray, to come to pass. Look at what Jesus said in Mark 11:22-24;

“Let the faith of God be in you! Listen to the truth I speak to you: If someone says to this mountain with great faith and having no doubt, ‘Mountain, be lifted up and thrown into the midst of the sea,’ and believes that what he says will happen, it will be done.  This is the reason I urge you to boldly believe for whatever you ask for in prayer—believe that you have received it and it will be yours.

Nowhere in there did it mention feelings! The only thing faith and feelings have in common is the letter ‘F’.  Have you ever noticed what happens when you allow your faith to waver and land on your feelings? More often then not, whining, grumbling and complaining take over.

We must always remember that feelings are subject to change based on where you take them with your faith. You will never make right choices if you make them with feelings, but you rarely make wrong choices when faith and the Word are your guide.

I may not always win every skirmish, but I win every battle where I ignore my feelings and walk in faith. I refuse to allow the enemy to shake the foundation I’ve built on my faith in God. He is well able to deliver me from the enemy I face. 

This is just a side note for someone facing a mountain today; “Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will accomplish for you today. For the enemy whom you see today, you shall see again no more forever.” Your enemy is on shaky ground! Stop listening to the naysayers and guard the Word of God in your heart. He’s forever faithful! AMEN

Counterbalance

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But God chose those whom the world considers foolish to shame those who think they are wise, and God chose the puny and powerless to shame the high and mighty. I Corinthians 1:27 TPT

I just can’t seem to get this verse out of my head. I have been thinking on it for a few weeks now and the other day I heard the Lord say, “Counterbalance”, so I looked up the definition and found this; to have an effect that is opposite but equal to (something) : to balance (something) by being opposite.

As I thought of how this applies to God, I realized that He is indeed our counterbalance. He’s light in our darkness, strength in our weakness, able when we’re unable, health to our sickness and provision for our lack. What a great God!

Let me go a step further with this. He gave us His Holy Spirit so anything we don’t know, He leads us to the truth of it. Anything we can’t do, He’s our helper. When we pray in the Spirit, it builds us up in the weak areas of our life. I like that!

God was David’s counterbalance. He took a little shepherd boy and used him to take down a giant with a stone.  Jesus used a young lad with a 3 piece fish dinner to feed a multitude when He became his counterbalance. God became Mary’s counterbalance when He planted His seed in her womb to carry His son.

I don’t know what you’re facing today, but stop thinking you can do it or change it on your own. God wants to be your counterbalance, but He’s waiting on you to let Him be what you need Him to be.  He’s all sufficient! You can’t, but He can!

Father, I don’t have a clue how this is going to work out, but as Your word says; So we are convinced that every detail of our lives is continually woven together to fit into God’s perfect plan of bringing good into our lives, for we are his lovers who have been called to fulfill his designed purpose. Counterbalance me, Lord. I feel like I’m on a teeter totter with someone on the other side that’s much heavier and I can’t get down. But just as I know You will, place Your hand on me and rescue me. I’m so thankful. It’s in Jesus’ name, Amen.

Let God Do It

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Looking at his disciples, Jesus said, “Do you have any idea how difficult it is for people who ‘have it all’ to enter God’s kingdom?” The disciples couldn’t believe what they were hearing, but Jesus kept on: “You can’t imagine how difficult. I’d say it’s easier for a camel to go through a needle’s eye than for the rich to get into God’s kingdom.”

That set the disciples back on their heels. “Then who has any chance at all?” they asked.

Jesus was blunt: “No chance at all if you think you can pull it off by yourself. Every chance in the world if you let God do it.” Mark 10:23-27 MSG

One of the most difficult things to do is to trust someone we’re not familiar with. We have a tendency to trust what’s worked in the past, those we know well or things that have been proven over time. It makes sense that Jesus would say it’s difficult for those who have everything, or those who trust in the money that got them everything, to enter the Kingdom of heaven.

Why? Simply because they trust in what ‘got’ them everything. They trust this worlds system. Once we trust something, we’ll continue to trust it until it fails. I trust the chair I’m sitting in, but if the chair would break, I would be hesitant to sit in this chair and trust it to hold me.

But the Kingdom of God is a kingdom that trusts in God alone. It’s backward from our own systems. Mans system says ‘bank it!’, Gods says ‘give it’. It seems this is key with everything with God.

Jesus said, “Mark my words, no one who sacrifices house, brothers, sisters, mother, father, children, land—whatever—because of me and the Message will lose out. They’ll get it all back, but multiplied many times in homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and land—but also in troubles. And then the bonus of eternal life! This is once again the Great Reversal: Many who are first will end up last, and the last first.” (verses 29-31)

I see so many people get discouraged because they’ve tried it and it doesn’t work. This isn’t a ‘get rich quick scheme’, this is a lifestyle of trusting God regardless if you like the outcomes or not. God see’s all, know’s all, has a plan and orders your steps to do HIS pleasure, not yours.

Stop stressing over what hasn’t happened and focus on what has happened. Thank Him for what He’s done in the past and what He will do in your future. Spend time reading about His faithfulness and learn of Him. Let Him do what needs to be done. Your job is to keep giving when He says, in ways He tells you to, and let go of your need to control it. Just as a seed that’s planted, comes up out of the ground and bears fruit, so will your seed produce.

Father, today I let go! I will trust You with everything! My future, my finances, my health, my home, my children, I let it all go. I trust You to do what You said You would do. You promised protection, provision, health and long life and I believe with all my heart that You will remain faithful to do it. I will listen today and obey the promptings to sow seed and trust You with the outcome. It’s in Jesus’ name, Amen.

Faith Does Things

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My brothers and sisters, what good does it do if someone claims to have faith but doesn’t do any good things? Can this kind of faith save him? Suppose a believer, whether a man or a woman, needs clothes or food and one of you tells that person, “God be with you! Stay warm, and make sure you eat enough.” If you don’t provide for that person’s physical needs, what good does it do? In the same way, faith by itself is dead if it doesn’t cause you to do any good things. James 2:14-17 GW
 
Believing in God is an awesome start, but belief alone isn’t enough. Let’s take a look at Jesus, since He’s to be our example of what a believer should look like. It was said of Him that He went around doing good and healing all. He was a doer. He recognized that faith requires action.
 
James 1:22 says it like this; Do what God’s word says. Don’t merely listen to it, or you will fool yourselves.
 
Start where you are. Gain the mindset that you serve a God who can not just replace what you sow, but multiply it beyond your wildest dreams. Now look for ways to give out of what you have. Anything. Clothing, food, money, a ride, a job, a glass of water, a hug, a word of encouragement. God isn’t stingy, He’s generous. If you want to be like your Father, learn to be generous and watch what happens next.
 
Everybody wants a miracle, but nobody wants to be that to someone else. Stop looking at raising the dead until you train yourself to see the person in need next to you at the bus stop. Put action to your faith!
 
Father, you have sufficiently rattled my cage this morning. You woke me early to show me a very simple element of a true believer; being others focused in a tangible way. You said that in all my getting, get understanding. Understand that You’re a giver, and be like You. Give me ways today to demonstrate that today. It’s in the name of Jesus, the Son You gave, Amen.

Loving Me

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“Loving me empowers you to obey my word. And my Father will love you so deeply that we will come to you and make you our dwelling place.” John 14:23 TPT

Love does so many things, but this one, loving Jesus empowers me to obey God’s Word, that is so very profound. If I just focus on loving Jesus. Seems the more I pour out, my heart is overwhelmed with more love then I can contain. It’s the spill-over affect that changes lives around me.

But the second part of that verse makes me so excited! That Father will love me so deeply that He will come to me and make me His dwelling place. Me. Sandy Gregory! A place God calls home. That thrills my soul.

“Then sings my soul, my Savior God to thee, How Great Thou Art! How Great Thou Art! Then sings my soul, my Savior God to thee, How Great Thou Art! How Great Thou Art!”

He’s in me. He’s in me on purpose, for purpose. He’s in me to perfect me, not based on my merit, but on Jesus’ merit. He’s in me every moment of every day. Good days, bad days, He’s still in me. My hope. My healer. My provider. My strong tower. My refuge. My help. My Love.

It’s not me who is able to do what God intended me to do, it’s Christ in me who is able. Mine is to love and surrender to His love. His is to abide in me. I can live with that! I can do with that. I can love others with that.

Father, thank You for placing Your Spirit in me and accompanying me each day and night. In the good times, the hard times, the lonely times, the frustrating times, You’re always there, lighting the way and leading me on. I love You Jesus!

When GPS Loses it’s Voice

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Have you ever been on your way to a destination and for whatever reason, be it a detour or lack of GPS service, you got totally and completely lost? A few years ago, I was invited to a party in a nearby city in an area I was not familiar with. Like any one with a smart phone, I plugged in the address into the GPS and hit start. Usually upon hitting that button, a voice booms out advising you how to exit your driveway and get on the right road. That part annoys me, but I digress.

For reasons unknown, the voice was silent this time so I checked my media volume to make sure it was up. Still no voice. Well, I’m not a total idiot and still know how to read a map, so I looked at the layout of the map and figured the best route to proceed and I’m off.

The ride was pretty uneventful until I looked at the map and saw the road I was told to turn on had a different name then the one hanging from the traffic signal.  I found myself growing a little anxious, unsure if it was the right road, finally deciding that if it was wrong, I could always turn around. I looked at my phone and in my best ‘mother’ voice yelled, “TALK TO ME!”

As though she heard me, the GPS chick found her voice. The rest of the ride was a lot easier because she was there to verbally walk me through each turn until I arrived at my destination.

I think that’s how we are with life sometimes. God’s invited us to His party and given us directions on how to get there, but when our signal is weak and we don’t hear His voice, we become undone. Some pull off the road and refuse to go any further until they hear Him clearly speak, “This is the way! Walk this way!” And some of us read the map, pull out our compass and just keep moving even when we’re not sure.

God told Abram: “Leave your country, your family, and your father’s home for a land that I will show you. I’ll make you a great nation and bless you. I’ll make you famous; you’ll be a blessing. I’ll bless those who bless you; those who curse you I’ll curse. All the families of the Earth will be blessed through you.” Genesis 12:1-3 Message

Now mind you, Abram had never met God, didn’t know who He was, but did just what He asked and left. He had no GPS, no maps, didn’t know where he was going but still went. He was 75, married to a barren woman, had livestock to care for along the way, but in spite of all that, he went. Why? Because he heard a voice.

Some of you have heard Gods voice but because he didn’t give you step by step instructions, you opted out for a safer more secure plan. Some of you started out but hit opposition, unexpected detours, foggy weather, you felt it unsafe to proceed so you stopped.

But some of you crazy people just kept walking. You wouldn’t be deterred by the weather, the cliffs, the falling rocks, the hidden traps. You kept walking, even when your feet were tired and you just wanted to stay in your comfort zone where all your friends and family were. You traded the familiar for the hope of a future with a God you’ve never seen but know deep down in your heart that He’s alive and has big plans for you.

How do you know when you’ve arrived? How do you even know you’re in the right place? You’ll just know. Just as Abram did, so will you. And regardless if you’ve heard His voice along the way or not, you’re still aware of His presence and are confident in His ability to steer you in the right direction. Psalm 37:23 says that the steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord and He takes great delight in the plans He has for him.

He’s delighted that you’ve chosen to trust Him. He’s excited for the plans He sees for your future. He’s right there watching over you and if you’ll continue to trust Him, He will bless your future even more then you can imagine. Thank you for trusting Him to step out into the vast unknown when you heard His voice.

Father, I’m still walking! I’m still doing! I’m still singing! I’m still talking! I’m still writing! I’m still praising Your Name. I’m still trusting! I’m still at peace! I’m still confident in Your plan even when I’m unsure of myself. It’s in You I live and breathe and have my being. Amen