Gird up Your Loins: It’s Time to Run Your Race

Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest your hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ 1 Peter 1:13

Due to the Corona Virus pandemic, many people are wondering what they should be doing during this time of quarantine, social distancing and self-isolation. For many people, it’s a time of heartache, turmoil, chaos, uneasiness and panic but for others it’s a time of rest, purpose, testing and prayer. Many are facing loss of loved ones as well as loss of homes, jobs and social life. The burdens are heavy to carry and fear is prevalent and real.

Not only due we face a global pandemic but lawlessness and violence in our nation, a cycle of natural disasters, economical instability and racial injustice.

The duality of this situation is that we are all dealing with the unknown reality and direction of our future all on levels; economically, socially, personally, and professionally.

During this time, we really need to be prepared for the unexpected, especially since we experienced a taste of the unexpected at the beginning of 2020. We must stay diligent and mindful of our circumstances and environment.

There is much confusion, deception, anger and fear. The enemy’s tactic is too keep your focus on distractions by messing with your emotions.

To gird up your loins means to fight or battle. To run.

This is a season for battle and a time to run with endurance. In this new season, we must use wisdom and discernment to navigate through the difficulties of life.

Heb 12:1

Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us

Unfortunately, many people complained and resisted the lock down period during quarantine. Since they had no knowledge of the spirit, they did not understand that this was an opportunity to be still, rest and draw near to God as well as pray for direction and protection.

Due to their arrogance, pride and disobedience, they gathered at beaches, bars and restaurants despite the health warnings.

Prov 10:8

The wise in heart will receive commandments: but a prating fool shall fall.

In any spiritual fight or battle, you need clarity and divine instructions. You need to be focused and silence all distractions and noise around you. It may be difficult depending on your surroundings but when you develop a relationship with the Lord he provides an unspeakable peace that the world cannot understand.

Prov 10:17

He who keeps instruction is in the way of life, But he who refuses correction goes astray.

In order to win the battle, there are some things you should do to strengthen your spiritual, mental, emotional and physical being.

Abide in Confidence

It may seem odd to rest in a time of battle but you can’t fight a war if you are physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually exhausted, weary and tired. You are not able to think clearly. You are more agitated. The enemy will attack ferociously when you are drained.

The definition to wait means to live in confidence or eager suspense. The Hebrew word “Qavoh” means to wait, look for, hope or expect.

You need physical rest to repair your body but you also need to build your mind and spirit for preparation to battle all the darts of the enemy. It is priority to read and speak the Word of God daily to strengthen your spirit. Faith comes by hearing and by hearing of the Word of God. Rom 10:17  You must not only recite the words but believe them. It’s more than lip service. The Word of God is life and it must be embedded within your heart. Speaking words of doubt or trying to convince yourself that God’s words are true will not work. You must believe by faith and receiving knowledge that God’s words are true.

2 Corth 10:5

Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

The Word of God is a living word. It is life to your bones. The Lord spoke the world into existence and with the same power we can speak blessings or curses into our lives.

Heb 11:6

But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.

If you are at a loss as to where to start, you should find scriptures that speak to your situation and attack the enemy with God’s word on a daily basis. To build up your faith, listen to sermons, have conversations with other believers of faith, listen to wise counsel and instruction, put on praise and worship music to elevate your mood.

When you simultaneously implement all of these activities into your daily routine, you will develop faith and strength to move through life despite the obstacles and challenges you face.

2 Theo 1: 11

Therefore we also pray always for you that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfill all the good pleasure of His goodness and the work of faith with power

Be Led by the Holy Spirit

When you move or visit a new country or even start a new job, you have to observe and study and your new environment. You have to get familiar with the dialect or language, adapt to the food and culture. On a job, you will need to be in compliance with a new set of instructions, rules, policies and procedures to function successfully.

It’s wise to observe the ways of the people and your new environment. It’s a time of training. Be slow to speak. Learn how they function. You simply can’t jump into a new environment and think you know everything even if you are a seasoned professional or have years of experience.

You must walk in humility and not in the flesh. Allow the Holy Spirit to direct your steps. Be sensitive to the Holy Spirit and watch how he will prompt you in how to maneuver in a new atmosphere or climate. The Holy Spirit will teach you what you need to do or how to speak in season.

In any conflict, you will have the wisdom to size up your opponent by keeping a watchful eye and a cool head, as well as by learning their ways on how to handle the situation with wisdom and discernment. Learn the ways of the enemy. The devil is a liar and the master of all confusion.

Pray Without Ceasing

Communication with God is priority to fighting the battle at hand. There is no formal way to pray. Just open your mouth and tell the Lord what you’re going through. Ask questions. Praise His name. Listen to Him speak. Prayer require listening so do not just beg God in times of trouble for your needs or wants to be met. It’s a relationship so seek him in the good times and the bad times. Allow the Holy Spirit to lead you in prayer. He intercedes when we do not know what to say or do. He is the comforter when we are pain and despair.

Walk in Your Power and Authority

When you understand the power of God and trust in Him completely, you will have confidence in his ability to guard, protect, guide, teach and direct you. You have power to command and transform negative situations and outcomes with the power of God that lies within you.

Zech 4:6

It’s not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord.

In the last days, the Body of Christ will experience the full power and anointing of the Spirit of God. However, it will only be for those who have a clean vessel and have purged themselves of all sin and disobedience from their lives. The spirit will not operate in an unholy, sinful person. 

Eph 5:1-14

Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma. But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. For [a]this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. Therefore do not be partakers with them.

1 Theo 4:7-8

For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness. Therefore he who rejects this does not reject man, but God, who has also given us His Holy Spirit.

Prepare for Battle

Everyone has a different assignment so you can’t follow what you’re neighbor, friend or family is doing. The Lord has called you for a specific task. You have unique, talents, skills, experience and gifts. This society has conditioned people to follow and copy the patterns, strategies and tactics of the world but we are kingdom citizens.

We walk in what the Lord has designed and instructed for us to do. We must be aligned and in tune with the Spirit of God. Be obedient. Listen to His instructions. We have a sphere of influence in specific areas and we must occupy the land that was given to us to glorify and praise his name.

Rom 8:28

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

Put on your war clothes. Suit up warriors! You have been trained in your wilderness season. Rise up, remnant and take your position. Boot camp season is over. Take your authority and Power in Christ and slay the opposition set before you.

Phil 4:13

I can do all things in Christ which strengthens me.

Take Action

Although we are spiritual beings, we live in a natural world. We must be salt and light on the earth. The Lord has a calling and purpose for each person he created. You were designed to give God glory.

Jesus came to save the lost. We are his hands and feet so we must navigate through life demonstrating his love in obedience. We must have courage and strength to dismantle the violent, destructive forces and attacks of the enemy. We must be watchful of the times and seasons, laws and policies being implemented that are not in alignment to God’s laws. We cannot sit back as fearful, lazy Christians and watch the enemy kill, steal and destroy. We must gird up our loins for battle.

Deut 31:6

Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.

Walk in the Light

For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), 10 finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret. 13 But all things that are exposed are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light. 14 Therefore He says: “Awake, you who sleep, Arise from the dead, And Christ will give you light.” 15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, 16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. 18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; 19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; 20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; 21 Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.

Execute with Precision

There is a plan or strategy to execute with precision. You must target the root to destroy it. You cannot allow distractions to get in the way.

Jer 1:10

See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant.

Sometimes you will have to stand alone. You have to guard your heart, mind, mouth and ears from evil and deception. You can’t absorb the nature of evil. Be mindful of what you listen to or watch on TV, radio or the internet. The most subtle appearances of evil can corrupt your heart. It will suck your energy and strength. It will cloud you vision. You need razor-sharp focus to diffuse the enemy.

The adversary is the master of all lies. He is a deceiver. He is a thief. He is a manipulator. Don’t allow the devil to whisper words of discouragement or strip you of your authority and power in Christ. Don’t allow the voice of Satan to become louder than the voice of God. The devil is not creative. God is the creator and holds all creation in his hands. Take your position in Christ and decree God’s promises over your life and over your family and friends.

When a boxer enters the ring, he fights by targeting the weakest points of his opponent. He wears him down to the point of exhaustion to win the match. That is the enemy’s tactic and strategy for the saints. The enemy will constantly use the same opposition to come against you.

Walk in your identity in Christ Jesus. Break the lies of fear, doubt, intimidation, opposition, sickness and disease, and resistance. The Lord is our advocate, our mediator, our great high priest and our intercessor. Put on the whole armour of the Lord.

Prov 10:23-25

But a man of understanding has wisdom. 24 The fear of the wicked will come upon him, And the desire of the righteous will be granted. 25 When the whirlwind passes by, the wicked is no more, But the righteous has an everlasting foundation.

2 Corth 10:3-6

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds;) Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ. And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.

You can’t defeat the enemy in your own strength. Who is this King of glory? The Lord is strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle. Psalm 24:8

That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;  Eph 4:14

We must elevate our mindsets and not be swayed by the ways of the world with every wind of doctrine. We must run with endurance the race that is set before us.

I say run, run, run, child of God like you have never run before!

Phil 3:14

Phil 3:14

I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

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Related Scriptures:

2 Sam 22:40

For You have armed me with strength for the battle;
You have subdued under me those who rose against me.

Isaiah 59:1

Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, That it cannot save; Nor His ear heavy, That it cannot hear.

Gal 6:9

And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.

James 1:4

But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

Phil 4:6

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;

Isaiah 61:3

To console those who mourn in Zion,
To give them beauty for ashes,
The oil of joy for mourning,
The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;
That they may be called trees of righteousness,
The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.”

Eph 6:14

Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness

Suffering for Right and Wrong

I Pet 3:13-22

13 And who is he who will harm you if you become followers of what is good? 14 But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you are blessed. “And do not be afraid of their threats, nor be troubled.” 15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; 16 having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed. 17 For it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.

Hab 2:3

For the vision is yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; Because it will surely come, It will not tarry.

Jer 29:11

For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.

Phil 3:14

 I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.

I King 18:46

46 Then the hand of the Lord came upon Elijah; and he girded[a] up his loins and ran ahead of Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel.

Isaiah 40:31

But those who wait on the Lord
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.

Job 38:3

Now [a]prepare yourself like a man;
I will question you, and you shall answer Me.

Gal 5:16-26

Walking in the Spirit

16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, [f]murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 [g]gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.

Ezk 36:8-12

But you, O mountains of Israel, you shall shoot forth your branches and yield your fruit to My people Israel, for they are about to come. For indeed I am for you, and I will turn to you, and you shall be tilled and sown. 10 I will multiply men upon you, all the house of Israel, all of it; and the cities shall be inhabited and the ruins rebuilt. 11 I will multiply upon you man and beast; and they shall increase and [a]bear young; I will make you inhabited as in former times, and do better for you than at your beginnings. Then you shall know that I am the Lord. 12 Yes, I will cause men to walk on you, My people Israel; they shall take possession of you, and you shall be their inheritance; no more shall you bereave them of children.

Beauty for Ashes: A Global Outcry for Justice and Equality

The grass withereth, the flower fadeth; but the word of our God shall stand for ever. Isaiah 40:8

Oh, Nation! Do you hear our voices? Do you hear the cries of the people? The people who are constantly shot and killed on the streets and in their homes of America? The people constantly under assault and persecution for the color of their skin? The people striped of their identity and vandalized of their basic human rights to live free on this earth?

Our cities are burning due to the blind eye for justice. For generations, we have been raped of our humanity and dignity. How long do we have to continue on the same cycle of racism, prejudice, bigotry, harassment, discrimination and ignorance?

Oh, stiff-necked nation, repent for the sins against humanity. Turn away from your idols. Change from your wicked ways, devices and weapons of destruction against the people of color. Have you not learned anything from past generations?

This racist spirit; this racist attitude is a condition of the heart. It is a learned behavior that is passed on like a contagious virus. It is a disease of the soul that has infected every political, educational, judicial, and economical system throughout the world.

Do you not understand there is a penalty? That there is a price to pay for injustice? That you are accountable and responsible for your actions or complacency?

Why did it take cities to burn across the nation to the arrest four white men for the death of an innocent man?

Your hands are bloody and unclean. Your hearts are like filthy rags. Your mind is like a cancer.

We are at a crossroad in America for justice. We can’t go back to insanity. The repetitious pattern of hatred has to be extinguished. The time is now!

This moment is a pivotal point in history. The embedded racial coding throughout American culture is exposed and guilty as charged. Do you realize that there are consequences of an unchanged heart filled with arrogance, greed, ignorance and disobedience?

Oh city of Babylon, judgement is upon you. Purge from your evil ways before it’s too late. Its midnight hour in America and in the world. Extreme measures of correction, action and resolution is the torch that will lead the way out of darkness. The wind of change is upon us.

Will we finally have beauty for ashes?

The message is simple. Love.

I Peter 4:8

And above all things have fervent love for one another, for “love will cover a multitude of sins.”

John 13:34

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.

Jer 50:23-25

How is the hammer of the whole earth cut asunder and broken! how is Babylon become a desolation among the nations!

24 I have laid a snare for thee, and thou art also taken, O Babylon, and thou wast not aware: thou art found, and also caught, because thou hast striven against the Lord.

25 The Lord hath opened his armoury, and hath brought forth the weapons of his indignation: for this is the work of the Lord God of hosts in the land of the Chaldeans.

Jer 50:26-29

Come against her from the utmost border, open her storehouses: cast her up as heaps, and destroy her utterly: let nothing of her be left.

27 Slay all her bullocks; let them go down to the slaughter: woe unto them! for their day is come, the time of their visitation.

28 The voice of them that flee and escape out of the land of Babylon, to declare in Zion the vengeance of the Lord our God, the vengeance of his temple.

29 Call together the archers against Babylon: all ye that bend the bow, camp against it round about; let none thereof escape: recompense her according to her work; according to all that she hath done, do unto her: for she hath been proud against the Lord, against the Holy One of Israel.

Jer 50:38

A drought is upon her waters; and they shall be dried up: for it is the land of graven images, and they are mad upon their idols.

Jer 50:43

The king of Babylon hath heard the report of them, and his hands waxed feeble: anguish took hold of him, and pangs as of a woman in travail.

Jer 51:7-11

Babylon hath been a golden cup in the Lord’s hand, that made all the earth drunken: the nations have drunken of her wine; therefore the nations are mad.

Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed: howl for her; take balm for her pain, if so be she may be healed.

We would have healed Babylon, but she is not healed: forsake her, and let us go every one into his own country: for her judgment reacheth unto heaven, and is lifted up even to the skies.

10 The Lord hath brought forth our righteousness: come, and let us declare in Zion the work of the Lord our God.

11 Make bright the arrows; gather the shields: the Lord hath raised up the spirit of the kings of the Medes: for his device is against Babylon, to destroy it; because it is the vengeance of the Lord, the vengeance of his temple.

Jer 51:17-18

Every man is brutish by his knowledge; every founder is confounded by the graven image: for his molten image is falsehood, and there is no breath in them.

18 They are vanity, the work of errors: in the time of their visitation they shall perish.

Jer 51:43

43 Her cities are a desolation, a dry land, and a wilderness, a land wherein no man dwelleth, neither doth any son of man pass thereby.

Isaiah 61

The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;

To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn;

To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.

And they shall build the old wastes, they shall raise up the former desolations, and they shall repair the waste cities, the desolations of many generations.

And strangers shall stand and feed your flocks, and the sons of the alien shall be your plowmen and your vinedressers.

But ye shall be named the Priests of the Lord: men shall call you the Ministers of our God: ye shall eat the riches of the Gentiles, and in their glory shall ye boast yourselves.

For your shame ye shall have double; and for confusion they shall rejoice in their portion: therefore in their land they shall possess the double: everlasting joy shall be unto them.

For I the Lord love judgment, I hate robbery for burnt offering; and I will direct their work in truth, and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.

And their seed shall be known among the Gentiles, and their offspring among the people: all that see them shall acknowledge them, that they are the seed which the Lord hath blessed.

10 I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.

11 For as the earth bringeth forth her bud, and as the garden causeth the things that are sown in it to spring forth; so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise to spring forth before all the nations.

Let the King be Lifted up

 

The next day the great crowd that had come for the festival heard that Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem.  

They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting, “Hosanna! “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Blessed is the king of Israel!”


Jesus found a young donkey and sat on it, as it is written:
“Do not be afraid, Daughter Zion; see, your king is coming, seated on a donkey’s colt.”


At first, his disciples did not understand all this. Only after Jesus was glorified did they realize that these things had been written about him and that these things had been done to him.


Now the crowd that was with him when he called Lazarus from the tomb and raised him from the dead continued to spread the word. 

Many people, because they had heard that he had performed this sign, went out to meet him.

John 12:12-18

The Healing Garden: How to Find Beauty in a World of Chaos

Often we miss opportunities to capture the reality of the beauty that surrounds us because we are too caught up in our busyness. It takes a conscious effort to take notice of the little miracles and unlimited beauty that unfolds all around us.

Whether you live in a city, suburb or in the country, we are part of a collection of beauty.  Embrace the kaleidoscope of color that is found in a field of flowers or the silent whistle of leaves on a tree. Take notice of the backdrop under the night lite sky or a chiseled, sculpture of an architectural work of art in the heart of the city. Observe the colorful personalities that make up the tapestry of a community or region. Listen to the city rhythms of sirens, horns, or loud conversations. Gaze upon the choreography of weaving traffic.

When we embrace our natural environments and even our own circumstances, we release tension, resistance and stress. We can transform how we see our world. In the midst of chaos, it can be a place of acceptance and harmony.

It’s realizing that although we can’t change every area of annoyance and distraction in our lives, we can learn to perceive the discomfort through a different lens. We might be contained within our boundaries but understanding that things will eventually change because life is constantly evolving and shifting. 

Grounding yourself in peace is a life skill that only comes by a relationship with the Lord.

There is also healing that takes place when we don’t build up a resistance to it. Whether in solitude or a bustling crowd of people, we can find our center which surrounds us in peace and tranquility.  Just by taking a moment to pause, we can capture our lives in motion instead of a selfie.

There is beauty in living in the moment. If you blink, you’ll miss it.

Scripture Readings:

But I have calmed and quieted myself, I am like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child I am content. Psalm 131:2

The fear of the Lord leads to life; then one rests content, untouched by trouble. Prov 19:21

I saw a man who had no family, no son or brother. He always worked hard but was never satisfied with what he had. He never asked himself, “For whom am I working so hard? Why don’t I let myself enjoy life?” This also is very sad and useless. Eccl 4:8 (NCV)

Be still, and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10

What’s the difference between trust, faith and belief?

 

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Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. Psalm 20:7

Do you wonder if trust, faith or belief means the same thing?

Although they sound the same or at least very similar, these words are not the same. However, they are part of the same family, per say, and weaved together in various ways.

TRUST

  1. A reliance on the integrity, veracity or reliability of a person or thing.
  2. Something committed to one’s care for use or safekeeping.
  3. The state or position of one who has received an important charge.
  4. Confident expectation; hope
  5. In commerce, credit
  6. To rely upon; to commit to the care of another
  7. The property or thing held in trust as in relation subsisting between the holder and the property so held.
  8. A combination of business firms formed to control productions or prices of some commodity.

In the world, people rely on the trust of their spouse, friends, doctors, teachers and other people in their communities. They depend on their opinions, advice, judgments, criticism, and perspectives. They depend on their status, position and intellect.

For the most part, they are self-reliant and value the ideas and opinions of others. Some people may even listen to the instruction or opinion of others before following their own minds.

The problem with trusting others is that they may not always use wisdom and could lean you towards the wrong decision. You may not have clarity on the right answer or correct decision to make (depending on the situation).

When making sound decisions, you should have a peace within which can easily be found through the Holy Spirit. When you put your trust in Him. You will eventually experience change. At times, you will wait endlessly for divine guidance with no answers in sight but you must remain diligent despite the circumstances. There may be a lesson to be learned while waiting for direction.

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Idolatry is another issue that arises by trusting in material things. Money, houses, fame, and fortune are all forms of idolatry. You may even be addicted to your cell phone or the internet. Whatever you put before God, will become a form of idolatry.

As a person strives for more, they become dissatisfied with their life. They begin to compare and judge others. The birth of greed, jealousy, envy, and depression cradles the mind and soul as they continue to pursue fleshy passions or possessions.

The Lord is the only source of real and complete satisfaction. When people fail you or objects become old, lost, stolen or broken, Jesus is the one and only who satisfies and quenches the trust in a dry, parched world.

FAITH

  1. Belief without evidence.
  2. Confident trust
  3. Belief in God; the Bible
  4. A specific religion
  5. Anything given adherence or credence to a man’s political faith
  6. Allegiance

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In the Bible, it states, “Faith is the evidence hoped for the evidence of things not seen. Heb 11:1

In this culture, it seems foolish to believe in something that you cannot see. Have you ever heard the popular saying, “Seeing is believing?” This statement reinforces the belief of the natural realm or physical world while dismissing the reality of the spiritual one.

It’s not easy to believe in something you cannot see but everyone does it every day whether they realize it or not. The act of breathing is a form of faith. This simple yet necessary activity gives us life each and every day. Not one of us has ever seen oxygen but we know it exists.

The closest we ever got to see it is in the middle of winter when a puff of smoke comes out of your mouth or nostrils. The Lord also provides similar ways to reveal himself to us if we acknowledge His presence.

Another example is music. No one has ever seen music yet it exists. Although we hear it, we will never be able to see or touch it. Just like the Father, the Lord speaks to us within our spirit but we must be still enough to listen to the whisper of God.

BELIEF

1 The acceptance of something as true or actual

2. That which is believed true, as a creed

3.  Religious faith

4.  Confidence, trust

5.  An opinion

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The mere definition of belief opens up a Pandora’s box because there are so many belief systems in this world. So many opinions and perspectives of different cultures, ethnicities, races, religions, and regions. This aids in the chaos and confusion because everyone has their own opinions and what they feel is believed to be true.

The Lord loves us so much that He has given us freedom of choice. He does not force us, manipulate us or persuade us to believe in Him. He allows us free reign to seek Him or reject him.

Independence is a beautiful thing. However, when we depend solely on ourselves and the world system, it leads us to misery, deception, confusion, and frustration.

If you allowed a child, complete freedom to do what they wanted, they would self-destruct. They would probably eat all the candy, cookies or ice cream they wanted. Plus, they would watch TV or play video games all day and night and leave a mess in their rooms as well as the whole house.

Well, we are no different. We would choose all the pleasures of this world and ignore the consequences of our actions.

The Lord has defined certain principles and guidelines to abide by for our good. This is not to hurt us but to protect us. The Lord is a loving Father who guides us along life’s journey. There is a multitude of promises that align with the Lord’s instructions waiting for us. He is not waiting for the first chance we mess up so he can punish us if we do something wrong. He is full of compassion, grace, and mercy. However, you must be willing to cleanse your heart of all sin (repent) and walk as an example of Christ. The Lord has many gifts and treasures to enjoy on this earth as well as in heaven.

The Lord asks that you trust Him, walk in faith and believe in Him at all times.  Commit to His ways for His love endures forever.

Prayer

Lord, Thank you for being a loving Father. I honor and worship you in spirit and in truth. Help me to walk in your ways. When I mess up, let me be quick to correct my mistakes. I pray that you will give me a measure of faith that will shift all obstacles blocking my path. I rebuke all fear, self-doubt, addictions, temptation, anxiety or depression. Help me to trust in you alone. Reveal yourself to me in new ways and may I receive a fresh revelation. I believe your promises and I stand on your word in the mighty name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

Facing Rejection with Humility

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It seems everyone has dealt with rejection at one time or another in their lives. Rejection comes in many forms. It may be when you tried to make a friend in elementary school, but was teased and laughed at instead. In high school, you may have wanted to go to the prom with a boy or girl that you had a crush on, only to find out that they already had a date or had no interest in you. Even in adulthood, there are all kinds of rejection stemming from interviewing for a job to being declined for a loan for that beautiful home you dreamed of.

No matter how rejection finds you, the emotions that follow are real. The one person who suffered rejection was Jesus Christ. Throughout his ministry, he was taunted, scorned, and rejected. He could not even provide miracles in his hometown of Nazareth because they would not accept him or his teaching. He was kicked out of the synagogue while speaking, yet he did not walk with a scornful heart.

Rejection is a hard pill to swallow and can lead to other issues if you’re constantly rejected by others. It can stripe you from your self-esteem and confidence leaving you to feel like you’re not good enough or it can be the root of jealousy when you start to compare yourself to others. When you have suffered betrayal, insecurity, frustration, and fear, it tends to overwhelm your emotional state.

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Rejection does not feel good, but when you know and understand that there is a process in pain and that the Lord is establishing and guiding your footsteps, as well as shaping your character, it shines a new perspective on such negative feelings.

Here is just a few benefits of rejection:

  • Builds character
  • Develops thicker skin and makes you stronger
  • Provides safety and protection from unseen danger or harm
  • Teaches you how to accept rejection and move on
  • Pushes you to greatness by developing yourself on a personal, spiritual, emotional, mental and physical level
  • Increases patience
  • Motivates and pushes you to try harder

When you feel rejected, understand that there is a loving God who created you and loves you unconditionally. It’s often hard to grasp his love at times because we live in a physical world, but we are made up of spiritual DNA and also battle with things we cannot visually grasp. Our battle is not with flesh and blood but with spiritual things in high places. (Eph 6:10-17)

Don’t allow rejection to destroy who you are. Speak words of encouragement to yourself and to others. Build a support group of positive, nurturing friends who will inspire and motivate you. However, make sure can motivate and encourage yourself. Work on yourself every day.

Learn a new hobby or participate in your community. To attend a conference or seminar to learn something new. Keep growing. Don’t take rejection personally. Stand tall in your abilities, talents, and gifts. Just keep it moving. When you know who you are in Christ, you will not be swayed by the opinions of others and the pressures of the world.

Prayer

Lord, we receive your unconditional love. Heal our hearts from the pain of rejection. Let us not look to the world for our worth, but to you who created us in your image. You hold all the power in your hands. Thank you for your love and the freedom to be me.

In Jesus name, Amen


Pick up Your Cross

When we reflect upon the Resurrection, we celebrate the triumph of Jesus overcoming the grave and sitting at the right hand of the Father in Heaven. We celebrate His victory and all He has done for our Salvation. He is alive and lives in our hearts and we await for His return. He will reign upon the earth as He did once before.

As followers of Christ, we must remain steadfast knowing that we should walk as Jesus and live as an example.  We should pick up our cross daily and follow Him. Mark 10:21

What exactly does that mean? Jesus requested the apostles to leave all they had to follow Him. In the New Testament, Jesus speaks of giving up everything to follow Him. He commanded to give riches and treasures to the poor and to put Him first in every area of our life. In Mark 10:25, Jesus said, “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than a rich man to enter into the Kingdom of God.”

Jesus want to know your heart is pure and that you can be content in all circumstances. Nothing should stand in the way of relationship with Him.  Of course, our Father gives us good pleasures, but He wants us to delight in Him. He wants us to honor and obey Him. He does not want us to be persuaded or enticed by glitz, glamour, fame and fortune.  Neither does He desire the church to become a den of thieves.

Picking up your cross also means to be obedient to what the Lord ask you to do.  When we follow and surrender to Jesus, we desire to please Him. He will also fulfill the desires of our heart. “If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.” John 15:7

Moses answered the call to lead the Israelites through the wilderness to the promise land. Joseph was obedient to endure betrayal and be thrown into a pit, despite the jealousy of his brothers, and still blessed them in spite of their evil ways towards him. Jeremiah was obedient to prophesy over disobedience in the land.

It is not always easy to be obedient to the Lord. In many cases, it can be tough. However, the Lord supplies everything you need to overcome the challenges, obstacles and surprises life brings. God is not looking for perfect people. He calls the misfits, the outsiders, the prideful, the unqualified, and the sinful.  Mark 2:13-17

When we pick up our cross, we are not carrying the burdens of life on our shoulders. This may be a misinterpretation of what the verse means and easily misunderstood. Jesus already paid the price for the penalty of sin for all of us. He carries our burdens. The greatest love of all flows from the heart of Jesus. By no means, we are to believe that we are to carry the cross like Christ did. Our works or deeds on earth does not open the doors to heaven. Salvation does. That is the whole reason Christ died for us. Without the crucifixion of Christ, there would be no sacrifice. Nevertheless, our works will be rewarded once we enter into the Kingdom. “Through faith and patience we will inherit the promises.” Heb 6:12

All that you search for in this world is null and void and does not satisfy. Jesus said, “I am the bread of life: He that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.” John 6:35

Pick up your cross and follow Him daily. Be a disciple of Christ.  Share the Gospel. Uplift and encourage others. Ask for wisdom, discernment and understanding and walk as examples of Christ.

Just a few things to think about…

What can you do to welcome others who have a different lifestyle than you or do not have the same faith or values that you have? How do you react or respond to stress, worry, doubt or fear? How do you act when you’re angry, tired or frustrated? What can you do differently when emotions take over? How do you lead by example in the workplace? How do you share your testimony with others when they don’t know Christ?

You’re welcome to leave your comments. Thanks for your support.

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Additional Scripture References:

Matt 7:9-11

Phil 4:19

Heb 6:10

 John 18  and  John 19

 I Peter 1:3-9

 Romans 3:23-25

 I Corth 15:13-28