Rejoice in The LORD! Always!

It seems to me that we can always find something to gripe about. Fuel prices are too high; cancer is taking the lives of our loved ones; local governments are infringing on our liberties; the federal government doesn’t care about us; the month is longer than our money; no one understands us; our parents didn’t give us every advantage; our friends have things to do that don’t involve us; our children grow up and have lives of their own; Shipley’s ran out of donuts before I got there; the nail shop didn’t have my color; morning came too soon (what about rejoicing that you got up?). Seriously, we have a really good gripery (I don’t think that’s a word – but I’ll take the liberty to create a word today).

We drain the life out of ourselves with our complaints, when we could be building ourselves up with thoughts of things that are “true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse.” I guarantee you that there is always something to rejoice about. In fact, if you’re reading this you can rejoice that you are alive; that you can see; that you can read; that you have a computer/device on which to read this message; that you know me (and I know you are so happy about that!). We know that in this life we will have trials, but our Savior encourages us to be of good cheer because he has already overcome any trial that we might face; and that is something to rejoice about.

As believers in Jesus Christ, we can choose to rejoice because at the end of the day we win! Or, we can choose to wallow in the sadness and let it destroy us. We all have bills to pay; we all have to face illness, either our own or someone we love; we all have a family member that is not living out their full potential; we have all lost someone dear to us; we all have lots on our plate; we all have sad moments — but there is always cause to rejoice. More significantly, it is through rejoicing that we will be made whole and well.

Focusing on the problems that we face will drain us dry!

Proverbs 17: 22

If you still just can’t seem to find cause to rejoice, I’ll give you a few “Praise Starters”

  1. He saved your soul
  2. He made you whole
  3. He loves you
  4. He cares for you
  5. He created you
  6. He will never leave you
  7. He will never forsake you
  8. He knows you, YET He loves you
  9. He provides for you
  10. He desires a deeper relationship with you.

Celebrate! Take delight in God’s goodness in your life! Be glad because of what you know He can do! I will choose to rejoice and be glad — I refuse to let circumstances, the enemy, people, problems use up all of my life energy. I will rejoice in the Lord ALWAYS — and I’ll say it to you too, rejoice! 

From Glenn Burleigh: “Rejoice in the Lord always! You better rejoice in the Lord always! Think about all He’s done! We ought to thank Him everyone! Rejoice! Again, I say rejoice! Make a joyful noise; a joyful noise unto The Lord. Rejoice in the Lord, Oh again – I say rejoice. Magnify The Lord, O lift up your voice and sing. Give praise to Jesus Christ; The Son of God; The King of Kings! Rejoice! Lift Him Up! Lift the Savior Up! Lord, We Praise You! Lord We Praise Your Name! Hallelujah! Glory To Your Name!” Again, I Say Rejoice

Happy ThanksGiving friends, family, blog followers … anyone who is reading this. Happy ThanksGiving!!

I’ve millions, billions of things to thank Him for … here are five things on my mind …

“I have so many things to thank God for! I could thank Him for an entire day!!” (Sing BJT!)

  • I thank Him for my LIFE!! Both my physical life AND my eternal life!! He created me and He gave me my salvation! Hallelujah!
  • I thank Him for His protection. All physical, all spiritual and all mental. Safe flights and safe roadside travels; protection from snares and traps of the enemy; protection from hurtful thoughts, actions and words from people who meant me harm. Hallelujah!
  • I thank Him for my purpose. He has taken all of me, every gift and talent & every weakness and limitation, and used me for the sake of His glory. Grateful! Hallelujah!
  • I thank Him for my family. A wonderful husband; children that love Him; wonderful grandchildren; godly sisters, nieces and nephews. Hallelujah!
  • I thank Him for being my God; my Father; my Savior; my King; my Provider; my Peace; my Joy; my Love; my Strength; my Light; my Friend; my Banner; my Protection; my Help; my Healer; my EVERYTHING!!

Praying that all of you will start your Thanksgiving Day today and keep that Thanksgiving going for the next 365 days!!!

He’s Worthy! I Rejoice!! I magnify His Name!!

Righteous Sensitivity

Ephesians 4: 19

I’ve seen so many news stories in the last few weeks that show terrible people relationships. News about people killing folk who will not stay in a relationship with them. Stories about people killing folk who have stolen what a person thought was their own love. Stories about people in relationships with the spouses of others. Stories about people taking what belongs to others by force – sometimes power, sometimes material things; about people considering themselves higher than other people; people thinking themselves perfectly right – and others as perfectly wrong. It amazed me as I was listening to a story, and the only thing they had in ‘common’ was what they both called their belief in Christ. Their hate and distaste for one another were immense! The desire for what the other person had was crazy! But the biggie is that their reflection of Christ was completely absent!

As I go about to and fro in the world, it would benefit me to remember the state of these people. Why? Because I am less likely to judge when I understand that nothing within them would restrain them. Now with that said, what about believers who live this way? Are they indeed believers?!?!

It is imperative that I now shun my responsibility to my brethren in reminding them that the Holy Spirit living in them is sufficient for restraint or escape from temptation. I pray for salvation; for the brethren, I pray for their maturity in Christ.

I am asking God to teach my heart to know when it is time to teach an unbeliever. I am asking him to move me in swiftly when it is time for reproof – as in the life of a believer. May my heart be ever sensitive to God’s leading and may the hearts of my brethren heed to the leading of His Holy Spirit.

Keep us from evil, Lord. Lead us from temptation.

When the World Sees What’s Inside of You

Our minds have been twisted by the ways of the world. We live as if we don’t want people to comprehend what God has done in our lives. We’re terrified they’ll be too impressed with us and elevate us to the status of demigods. The world has a tendency to worship what they perceive, ignoring the source of the miracle/wonder.

When Paul is talking to the believers in Galatia, he did not toot his own horn, rather lived before those people in a way that made them see what had taken place in Paul and praised God as The One who had done it.

Galatians 1: 24 And they were glorifying God because of me.

This time has come for the Body of Christ to shine through. We must let the world see what God has done in us individually and as a church and then use the opportunity to introduce the world to The God who can!

We can’t be afraid of what God has done in us. Instead, we need to be gloriously glad about it!

Walking boldly before men telling our story, being careful, and excited, and humble – giving God every glory for it so that they too will glorify Him! We need to acknowledge, daily, the God who has made our lives miraculous and usable.

Matthew 5: 16 In the same way, you should be a light for other people. Live so that they will see the good things you do and praise your Father in heaven.

People will know your past, but living in such a way that they know you stay firm in the faith that you may have once ignored can help people see your victory, encouraging them that they, too, can overcome all things. People will be motivated to praise God for the grace that brought about our conversion when we relate our tale. We owe nothing to anyone, but everything to God. When we are not hesitant to relate our tales, people will understand where everything originated from and will join us in ensuring that God receives all of the glory.

Father, embolden us to live our Christ lives out in the open! Help us to take courage and not fear our own pride or the world’s misguided accolades. Teach us how to defer to You both boldly and with great reverence so that this lost and dying generation might be saved!

As I look back over my life, and I think things over. I can truly say that I’ve been blessed! I have a testimony! (Rev. Clay Evans

Sacrifice of Praise!

Christ has offered the greatest sacrifice that could ever be offered … His life! And what does God require of us? Acknowledgment of the gift through prayer, praise, and adoration to God alone. Sounds easy, doesn’t it?

Truth is that our hearts often turn in worship toward many other things – much like our Old Testament brothers. Material things, the world’s success, etc.

If you want to give the sacrifice of praise, you can’t wait until you get to church – you have to do it every day from your heart! Give God praise in the name of Jesus as you work in your office; as you wash your car; as you care for the children; as you drive … all day!!

He deserves it!