Who’s your daddy?

We just celebrated another Father’s Day holiday! A time to honor our Dads. The one who raised us up and shaped us into what we are today. But for alot it is quite common to hear; ” I never knew my father!” “He left when i was young!” “He died.” “He went to jail.” “My mother never told me who he was.” “He’s around but he has another life.” Yes, we all have a human father whose seed contributed to our being, but we also have a divine Father whose life gives us life!!

Then there are those of us who knew our fathers but did not like them. We didnt feel loved, accepted or respected by the fathers we knew. Perhaps he drank too much, spoke too little, rarely if he ever came home. Maybe he criticized or ridiculed us in ways that wounded us. Perhaps there was physical or verbal abuse that damged us in some way. Many of us believe our relationship with our father was challenged, and of course it was all his fault.
The truth is your father has never mistreated you, abondoned you, harmed you, or denied you. He knows exactly what you need and he provides it the only way he can…..in LOVE, because of his unyeilding love for you. Your father has always been there, guiding you, protecting you, providing for you. Your father is as alive and well today as the day you were born. It may be that your father was not around, or that he was difficult to deal with. It is also true, however, that you could be confused about who your father is!
In the past; you may have held the man who contributed to you life responsible for your life. Starting today, be devoted to knowing who your real daddy is. Ask Jesus to help you understand yourself, your life and the role he plays in both. Ask him what he knows about you and what he sees for you and your life. Then ask daddy jesus to teach you how to forgive the man he used to bring you into this life.

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Loving the un-loveable~

It’s easy to Love people who are good to you! Who treat you well. People who are kind and loveable. It would be very nice if all people were nice, loving people. Unfortuanately, they are not. It would be wonderful if, while you are on the path to God revealing things to your spirit, every person you met would wish you well, or join in on your journey. Unfortunately, they will not! There are so many people who are in a great deal of pain, and on certain days these people will, consciously or unconsciously, inflict their pain on you. My pastor use to say, “Hurt people, hurt people!” This is so true!

People will speak ill of you for no good reason. People will return your good deeds with unkind, unloving words and deeds. People will lie to you, betray your confidence, selfishly hoard your property, and if they are really hurting, they may physically strike out at you.

The human tendancy is to offer insult for insult, hurt for hurt, ill deed for ill deed. But God says to offer love for insult, love for hurt, love to everyone regardless of the ill they may have offered you. The human perspective is to hate you, take from those who have taken from you, harm those who have harmed you. The spiritual perspective is to recognize that the more unlovingly a person behaves, the greater is their need for love and healing.

If you should encounter angry words or unkind actions today, take a deep breath, reach deep within yourself and greet the lack of love with lots of love. It doesnt matter what you’ve done in the past. From today and moving forward lets make a choice to respond to unkindness with kindness. Lets choose to love.

Matthew 5:46-48

The Message (MSG)

43-47″You’re familiar with the old written law, ‘Love your friend,’ and its unwritten companion, ‘Hate your enemy.’ I’m challenging that. I’m telling you to love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer, for then you are working out of your true selves, your God-created selves. This is what God does. He gives his best—the sun to warm and the rain to nourish—to everyone, regardless: the good and bad, the nice and nasty. If all you do is love the lovable, do you expect a bonus? Anybody can do that. If you simply say hello to those who greet you, do you expect a medal? Any run-of-the-mill sinner does that.

48″In a word, what I’m saying is, Grow up. You’re kingdom subjects. Now live like it. Live out your God-created identity. Live generously and graciously toward others, the way God lives toward you.”

Open up your heart~

Have you been hurt? Really really hurt? So hurt you can’t trust anyone. Don’t want to trust anyone! You’ve built a wall around your heart and you’ve been there so long you’ve decorated the inside. I know the feeling. I’ve been there. Sometimes i catch myself still trying to run to that place. But i have to stop myself and say NO. And remind myself that i must open my heart to others if i want to stop hurting. So often, we shut our hearts or shut others out to protect ourselves from being hurt. While we are on guard, we are defensive. Often, we become unapproachable and unavailable. We look for us, and usually find, an ulterior motive in everything and everyone. The motives and agendas we see, whether they exist or not, are the reasons we must protect ourselves. At the same time, we are so isolated and lonely. We don’t want to be hurt. We don’t want to be alone, but we don’t know what to do about how we feel.

I think i’ve come to realize that in general; most people are not out to hurt us. They hurt us because we expect to be hurt. They hurt us because they are trying to tear down barriers. They hurt us beacause our barriers look and feel very similiar to there barriers. When people see there issues being reflected back to them, they often become afraid of what they see and feel. In response, they want to get to you before you get to them. In the process, you get hurt. I have experienced that up close and personal! It has taken a long time to heal. But my God is so very faithful. I had to accept that people are not out to hurt me.  They hurt me because they just didn’t realize what they said or what they did caused so much pain. They don’t know what causes your pain because you won’t come from beind the barrier long enough to share the pain of your experiences. Or maybe you did come from behind your barrier for a minute and they did something to make you quickly run back behind your barrier and you made a choice to stay. You showed them your wounds and they thought they were dumb, weak, or didn’t handle them with care. It’s a hard spot to be in.

It is important to understand that when we shut our heart down, or live life on the defensive, there is absolutely no way healing or love can get in. When we shut down, we just keep going on hurting and hurting….

There came a point in my life…and it was a process. But God broke down those barriers of my heart. I had to change my thinking. It was hard but i had to allow people back into my heart. I had to open up myself to healing and love. With Gods help i was able to drop my defenses. Let go of all the bitterness i carried for so long. The unforgiveness i had in my heart and let Gods Love just envelop me. Yes…sometimes i find myself trying to run back to that place but i do have to tell myself NO!! I choose LOVE!! Expect the best. You may be surprised what happens.

The annointing of the Holy Spirit~

The Anointing of the Holy Spirit is the life-blood of any Minister. Without the Anointing, the Minister is incapable of ministering to the children of God. Without the anointing of the Holy Spirit, the words of the Minister are powerless against the mountains in this life.

The Christian can get some guidance from simply reading and the study of the Word of God, but without the anointed minister guiding and teaching them, they can not fully understand the depth and spiritual richness contained in the Word of God.

The anointed minister is no less and no greater a Christian than others, it is simply that they have been called, anointed and sent by God to fulfill a certain mission.

We run into problems in the Christian Church when those who have not been called and anointed and sent by God attempt to minister, and when those who were once anointed have lost the anointing.

You are not anointed by association, you are anointed by proclamation. The Lord first calls you, he then anoints you, and only then does he send you.

When God calls you, anoints you, then sends you, only then can you minister life to others.

When the anointed man of God speaks the Word of God, it penetrates your soul. It then produces faith in the hearer, and at this point the hearer can receive the fruit of this Word.

Has God called you to ministry? Though all Christians are called to serve the cause of Christ, God calls certain persons to serve the Church as pastors and other ministers. Writing to young Timothy, the Apostle Paul confirmed that if a man aspires to be a pastor, “it is a fine work he aspires to do.” [I Timothy 3:1, NASB] Likewise, it is a high honor to be called of God into the ministry of the Church. How do you know if God is calling you?

First, there is an inward call. Through His Spirit, God speaks to those persons He has called to serve as pastors and ministers of His Church. The great Reformer Martin Luther described this inward call as “God’s voice heard by faith.” Those whom God has called know this call by a sense of leading, purpose, and growing commitment. Charles Spurgeon identified the first sign of God’s call to the ministry as “an intense, all-absorbing desire for the work.” Those called by God sense a growing compulsion to preach and teach the Word, and to minister to the people of God. John Newton, famous for writing “Amazing Grace,” once remarked that “None but He who made the world can make a Minister of the Gospel.” Only God can call a true minister, and only He can grant the minister the gifts necessary for service. But the great promise of Scripture is that God does call ministers, and presents these servants as gifts to the Church.

You have the anointing of God flowing through you when God’s heart touches another person’s heart through your heart. The anointing of God is the Holy Spirit. He flows as a river of love, from the throne of grace, through the hearts of believers, bringing life to all that receive His touch.

God anoints people that love Him more than they love their own lives, and that love others as themselves. As we open our hearts to love others God’s anointing flows through us. When we close our hearts to others and grieve the Holy Spirit the flow stops.

(1 John 3:17 NKJV) But whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in him?

(Proverbs 4:23 NKJV) Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life.

The anointing of the Holy Spirit is given through people to demonstrate God’s love and power. Christ means the “Anointed One”. Because Christ is in us the same anointing that He had on earth we also have.

(Luke 4:18-19 NKJV) “The Spirit of the LORD is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me To preach the Gospel to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives And recovery of sight to the blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed; {19} To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD.”

1. The anointing is given to preach the Gospel to the poor
2. The anointing is given to heal and restore people
3. The anointing is given to proclaim freedom to the captives
4. The anointing is given to open blind eyes
5. The anointing is given to set people free
6. The anointing flows in God’s timing and proclaims God’s timing

1. The anointing is given to preach the Gospel to the poor, to bring the revelation of God’s love to those who are seeking.

God’s anointing flows to those who are hungry for a touch from His Holy Spirit. The anointing has less to do with the person that it flows through than it does with the person who receives it, and the One who sent it, God Almighty.

(Luke 6:19-20 NKJV) And the whole multitude sought to touch Him, for power went out from Him and healed them all. {20} Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: “Blessed are you poor, For yours is the kingdom of God.

(Matthew 5:3 NKJV) “Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. The term poor here is the Greek word, ptochos which carries the implication of being a beggar, in this case a spiritual beggar hungry for the Spirit of God.

  • The anointing can be stifled if the people refuse to receive it from the person that God is sending it through. Things such as pride, envy, bitterness, and unforgiveness against an anointed person can prevent the receiver from accepting it. The anointed person must go to people that can receive it.

(Matthew 13:57-58 NKJV) So they were offended at Him. But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own house.” {58} Now He did not do many mighty works there because of their unbelief.

(Matthew 10:13-14 NKJV) “If the household is worthy, let your peace come upon it. But if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. {14} “And whoever will not receive you nor hear your words, when you depart from that house or city, shake off the dust from your feet.

2. The anointing is given to heal and restore people

(Acts 10:36-38 NKJV) “The word which God sent to the children of Israel, preaching peace through Jesus Christ; He is Lord of all; {37} “that word you know, which was proclaimed throughout all Judea, and began from Galilee after the baptism which John preached: {38} “how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him.

3. The anointing is given to proclaim freedom to the captives

(2 Timothy 2:24-26 NKJV) And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, {25} in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth, {26} and that they may come to their senses and escape the snare of the devil, having been taken captive by him to do his will.

4. The anointing is given to open blind eyes

(2 Corinthians 4:3-4 NKJV) But even if our Gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, {4} whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the Gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.

(Revelation 3:18 NKJV) “I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see.

5. The anointing is given to set people free

(Isaiah 10:27 NKJV) It shall come to pass in that day That his burden will be taken away from your shoulder, And his yoke from your neck, And the yoke will be destroyed because of the anointing oil.

(John 8:36 NKJV) “Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.

6. The anointing flows in God’s timing, and also proclaims God’s timing

(Ephesians 2:10 NKJV) For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them. As we walk in the anointing of God we go where God wills, do what God wills, and say what God wills.

(John 8:28-29 NKJV) Then Jesus said to them, “When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and that I do nothing of Myself; but as My Father taught Me, I speak these things. {29} “And He who sent Me is with Me. The Father has not left Me alone, for I always do those things that please Him.”

  • The anointing of the Holy Spirit is a gift from God

(John 4:10 NKJV) Jesus answered and said to her, “If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.”

(John 4:13-14 NKJV) Jesus answered and said to her, “Whoever drinks of this water will thirst again, {14} “but whoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.”

(John 7:37-39 NKJV) On the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried out, saying, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. {38} “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.” {39} But this He spoke concerning the Spirit, whom those believing in Him would receive; for the Holy Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.

(2 Corinthians 1:20-22 NKJV) For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us. {21} Now He who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God, {22} who also has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee.

  • The anointing gives wisdom

(1 John 2:20 NKJV) But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you know all things.

(1 John 2:27 NKJV) But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.

(Isaiah 11:2 NKJV) The Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon Him, The Spirit of wisdom and understanding, The Spirit of counsel and might, The Spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the LORD.

(Daniel 12:3 NKJV) Those who are wise shall shine Like the brightness of the firmament, And those who turn many to righteousness Like the stars forever and ever.

(Proverbs 11:30 NKJV) The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life, And he who wins souls is wise.

(Psalms 90:12 NKJV) So teach us to number our days, That we may gain a heart of wisdom.

  • The anointing is the river of life that flows from the throne through your heart and penetrates other people’s hearts

(Psalms 36:7-9 NKJV) How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of Your wings. {8} They are abundantly satisfied with the fullness of Your house, And You give them drink from the river of Your pleasures. {9} For with You is the fountain of life; In Your light we see light.

(Psalms 46:4 NKJV) There is a river whose streams shall make glad the city of God, The holy place of the tabernacle of the Most High.

(Revelation 21:6 NKJV) And He said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts.

(Revelation 22:1-2 NKJV) And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb. {2} In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.

(Revelation 22:17 NKJV) And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.

  • As we continue in the river of God’s anointing it intensifies until we are carried by it.

(Ezekiel 47:1-10 NKJV) Then he brought me back to the door of the temple; and there was water, flowing from under the threshold of the temple toward the east, for the front of the temple faced east; the water was flowing from under the right side of the temple, south of the altar. {2} He brought me out by way of the north gate, and led me around on the outside to the outer gateway that faces east; and there was water, running out on the right side. {3} And when the man went out to the east with the line in his hand, he measured one thousand cubits, and he brought me through the waters; the water came up to my ankles. {4} Again he measured one thousand and brought me through the waters; the water came up to my knees. Again he measured one thousand and brought me through; the water came up to my waist. {5} Again he measured one thousand, and it was a river that I could not cross; for the water was too deep, water in which one must swim, a river that could not be crossed. {6} He said to me, “Son of man, have you seen this?” Then he brought me and returned me to the bank of the river. {7} When I returned, there, along the bank of the river, were very many trees on one side and the other. {8} Then he said to me: “This water flows toward the eastern region, goes down into the valley, and enters the sea. When it reaches the sea, its waters are healed. {9} “And it shall be that every living thing that moves, wherever the rivers go, will live. There will be a very great multitude of fish, because these waters go there; for they will be healed, and everything will live wherever the river goes. {10} “It shall be that fishermen will stand by it from En Gedi to En Eglaim; they will be places for spreading their nets. Their fish will be of the same kinds as the fish of the Great Sea, exceedingly many. Wherever the river goes it brings life. The fish in the above passage represent lost souls; the sea represents the sea of humanity, peoples and nations that need the Gospel message to come through God’s anointed people.

  • The anointing is given to intercede for people

(Isaiah 59:16-21 NKJV) He saw that there was no man, And wondered that there was no intercessor; Therefore His own arm brought salvation for Him; And His own righteousness, it sustained Him. {17} For He put on righteousness as a breastplate, And a helmet of salvation on His head; He put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, And was clad with zeal as a cloak. {18} According to their deeds, accordingly He will repay, Fury to His adversaries, Recompense to His enemies; The coastlands He will fully repay. {19} So shall they fear The name of the LORD from the west, And His glory from the rising of the sun; When the enemy comes in like a flood, The Spirit of the LORD will lift up a standard against him. {20} “The Redeemer will come to Zion, And to those who turn from transgression in Jacob,” Says the LORD. {21} “As for Me,” says the LORD, “this is My covenant with them: My Spirit who is upon you, and My words which I have put in your mouth, shall not depart from your mouth, nor from the mouth of your descendants, nor from the mouth of your descendants’ descendants,” says the LORD, “from this time and forevermore.” (Isaiah 60:1-2 NKJV) Arise, shine; For your light has come! And the glory of the LORD is risen upon you. {2} For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, And deep darkness the people; But the LORD will arise over you, And His glory will be seen upon you.

  • The free flowing anointing of God’s love brings joy to God and that joy is felt by the person He flows through. Love is the joy we get from God when we put His benefit and the benefit of another person before our own.

(Psalms 45:3-7 NKJV) Gird Your sword upon Your thigh, O Mighty One, With Your glory and Your majesty. {4} And in Your majesty ride prosperously because of truth, humility, and righteousness; And Your right hand shall teach You awesome things. {5} Your arrows are sharp in the heart of the King’s enemies; The peoples fall under You. {6} Your throne, O God, is forever and ever; A scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Your kingdom. {7} You love righteousness and hate wickedness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You With the oil of gladness more than Your companions.

(Isaiah 58:6-12 NKJV) “Is this not the fast that I have chosen: To loose the bonds of wickedness, To undo the heavy burdens, To let the oppressed go free, And that you break every yoke? {7} Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, And that you bring to your house the poor who are cast out; When you see the naked, that you cover him, And not hide yourself from your own flesh? {8} Then your light shall break forth like the morning, Your healing shall spring forth speedily, And your righteousness shall go before you; The glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard. {9} Then you shall call, and the LORD will answer; You shall cry, and He will say, ‘Here I am.’ “If you take away the yoke from your midst, The pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness, {10} If you extend your soul to the hungry And satisfy the afflicted soul, Then your light shall dawn in the darkness, And your darkness shall be as the noonday. {11} The LORD will guide you continually, And satisfy your soul in drought, And strengthen your bones; You shall be like a watered garden, And like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail. {12} Those from among you Shall build the old waste places; You shall raise up the foundations of many generations; And you shall be called the Repairer of the Breach, The Restorer of Streets to Dwell In.

  • Although there is great pleasure and joy in the anointing, because it is the presence of God, we are not to seek the joy, we are to seek God, and the benefit of others, the joy is a natural result of these things. The anointing is not given for the vessel it flows through; it is given for the one it flows to.

(Psalms 16:11 NKJV) You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

(James 4:3 NKJV) You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.

  • Everyone in the body of Christ is anointed with the Holy Spirit, and we all need to give from God’s anointing to each other, and we all need to be able to receive the anointing that comes through other Christians.

(1 Corinthians 12:4-12 NKJV) There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. {5} There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. {6} And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all. {7} But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: {8} for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, {9} to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, {10} to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. {11} But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills. {12} For as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ.

(Ephesians 4:11-16 NKJV) And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, {12} for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, {13} till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; {14} that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, {15} but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head; Christ; {16} from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.

  • The anointing is sacred, the anointing is the Holy Spirit, and all believers in Christ have the anointing of the Holy Spirit. We must be careful what we say about our brothers and sisters in Christ.

(Matthew 12:31 NKJV) “Therefore I say to you, every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven men.

(1 Chronicles 16:22-24 NKJV) Saying, “Do not touch My anointed ones, And do My prophets no harm.” {23} Sing to the LORD, all the earth; Proclaim the good news of His salvation from day to day. {24} Declare His glory among the nations, His wonders among all peoples.

Why do devotionals?

Have you ever had anyone in your family ask you these questions. “Why are you always reading those books?” or “Why are you always doing those devotionals?”  I know i have in the past. Some people who just don’t understand the value of a good devotional and how it can change your heart and your focus on life. 

 Have you ever had a situation, circumstance, or perhaps a relationship in your life that you have been struggling to overcome, trying to work through, or doing your best to work around. I know i have. There are those times that life seems so hard, that things will probably never get better for you, that you must expect less because that is just the way life is. But then you get a word! A nugget of hope. And you know you can overcome! You’ve been hurt, betrayed, abandoned, rejected, you’ve been struggling with feelings of anger; resentment, doubt, and fear but you read something uplifting and you put your hand on your heart and whisper to yourself i can make it!  I heard a dear pastor say once, ” If you behave yourself into a situation, you must behave yourself out of it!” A devotion is a behavior in service to love, truth, and God that will create powerful changes in the circumstances of your life that have held you down and back!! Whatever has been going on in your mind, your life, your heart can stop right now, if that is truly what you desire However, you must be willing to “do a new thing”! You must spend a little time, each day, in devotion to the truth about yourself and the truth about life. You must take a conscious approach to what you think and and how you feel about what you do. Devotion for myself clears up any misconceptions that may have obscured my vision of life! A devotion is a divine action. It’s profound dedication demonstrated desire to be in service to God. Since it is God’s desire for you to be happy, any time in devotion will always be beneficial. Growth is a profound experience. It can be beautiful and ugly, emporwering and confining, thought provoking and mind boggling, pleasant and unpleasant, all at the same time. Just when i thought i had it all figure out, life seems to say, “Now take this!” And you do. Then, the minute you are ready to throw your hands up, give up or beat up on yourself for doing the same thing in the same and ending up in the same dang place again. You know you have grown when you can meet a challenge head on, an obstacle or difficulty without totally losing it. Somehow, someway in the GROWTH PROCESS you have come upon the understanding that the more you grow, the more you know, the more you encouraged to grow and know. There is more of ME waiting to unfold. There is more about the world i desire to understand.There are more people coming into my life, and i am gaining more knowledge about myself through my experiences with them. Thats awesome! Time spent in devotion offers divine revelation. Its a process of opening yourself up to receive what already is. God’s love leads us to the truth. The minute that we believe that we know it all, have it all figured out, or that something about life does not apply to us, we cannot know the truth. When we devote time to knowing the truth, all else that we need has a way of finding us. God has so many good thing in store for us if we will surrender to him. When we become devoted to healing our inner world, loving and honoring ourselves and using that love as the standard by which we interact with others, thats what its really all about. Learning to love and honor yourself from the inside to the outside. Then we can love and honor those around us. One day at a time, through study and prayer you will be liberated. I am a walking witness. Thought patterns can be changed. You will be able to LOVE. Just one day of pure devotion can set a pattern in motion. Only conversing with God through prayer and studying God’s word are the tip of the Christian devotion ice burg. Devotion is a constant state of being where we keep our eyes open for opportunities to serve and positively impact lives we come in contact with. Loving God through loving others, that is devotion. (Matt 22:37-40)
Dig deeper. Study a little harder. It will change your life just as it has change mine, i promise!

 

What is Heaven like?

Let me start with what Heaven won’t be: boring. It is not a place where we will be ghosts or angels endlessly floating around on clouds, strumming harps, and wishing we’d brought a magazine.

Usually when we refer to Heaven, we mean the present Heaven where followers of Jesus go when we die. Though the present Heaven is a wonderful place, it’s not the place we’re made for—the place where God promises we can live forever. The Bible calls that future Heaven the New Earth. Sometime after Jesus returns, he will bring us to live on that New Earth—a place beautiful beyond our wildest imagination.

Some argue that the New Earth shouldn’t be called Heaven. But Heaven is wherever God decides to make his home, and wherever he sets up his throne. In Revelation 21:3 God promises he will make the New Earth his dwelling place, and in Revelation 22:3 he says he will put his throne there. That means the New Earth will be Heaven.

As our new bodies will be our old bodies made new, so the New Earth will be the old earth made new. As our bodies will still be our bodies, but better than ever, so the earth will still be Earth, but better than ever. Who knows, some of our favorite mountains, deserts, forests, waterfalls, and camping spots may be there.

The New Jerusalem will be a neo-Eden, a huge garden city of startling beauty. Heaven won’t be filled with hammocks—one for each person to lie on and rest, rest, rest. We’ll serve God doing enjoyable work. We’ll always get to do what we want to do, and we’ll always want to do what brings joy to God and to us.

Will we use the arts to praise God? I believe the answer is yes. Since the New Earth will be greater than our present Earth, then surely the greatest books, dramas, and poems are yet to be written. God created us with the ability to dance. Just as we can use our voices and musical instruments as a way to worship God, we can also use dancing to honor him.

What about sports? Picture how you might enjoy your favorite sport when you live on the New Earth with a perfectly healthy body. Olympic champion Eric Liddell said, “God made me fast, and when I run I feel his pleasure.”

Matthew 8:11 and a dozen other Scriptures say we’ll enjoy feasts with Jesus in an earthly kingdom. What do people do at a feast? Eat and drink, tell stories, celebrate, and laugh. God will be the host and Christ the guest of honor, and all stories and laughter will honor him.

Romans 8 says the whole creation groans, awaiting the resurrection of God’s children. Perhaps God will bring extinct animals back to life. By resurrecting his original creation, God could show his complete victory over sin and death. God is the giver of all good gifts. If having your pets on the New Earth would please you, God might well bring them back.

The curse removed beauty from God’s creation. But Revelation 22:3 says “no longer will there be any more curse.” Everything and everyone God has made will be beautiful and whole. There will be no diseases, no disabilities, no tragic accidents. God “will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain” (Revelation 21:4).

There’s much to discover in this universe. We’ll never know everything—we’re not God. But we’ll be able to explore the New Earth and discover amazing things about God’s creation, all of which will tell us more about our Creator.

While Jesus was here on Earth, crowds followed him because they loved him and wanted to be near him. The best part of Heaven will be spending time with Jesus.

While Jesus will be our best friend, God understands our need for friends and our desire for those friendships to continue in Heaven. He’s the one who made us that way. In Heaven we’ll have our old friends who know Jesus and many new friends as well.

Have you spent great time with family? Sometimes it’s been so good that you may have said, “It just doesn’t get any better than this.” Well, it will get better than this. Because no matter how good the very best moments of this life have been, the most ordinary moment in Heaven will be far better. In that day, in retrospect we will all agree with the apostle Paul: “our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18

 

I do know heaven will be a wonderful place. We have many loved ones waiting to welcome us. There are many things we don’t understand here and now but one thing i know for sure…we have many cheering us on to finish our own race!

Hebrews 12

 1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

 

In memory of Blake Kelly…….Always in our hearts!