Archives For Forgotten

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Is it just me or is there anyone else that worries about not worrying about what God may or may not do? When I’m under pressure, I tend to overlook for answers in my own strength.

At times,  it manifest in running every scenario that could happen, or should happen to the point I can’t even sleep well at night. Time and time again living my faith in this manner proves to be a big waste of…well…FAITH.

After all the time wasted searching in my own power, I always end up with nothing! Then it happens. God reminds me that I can’t do anything with NOTHING but He can do anything and everything with NOTHING.

Suddenly, deep in my heart I can feel a groaning of the Spirit of God praying for me the perfect will of God and then it happens; peace consumes me. Sometimes, when you stop looking, and you stop trying to figure it all out, God moves for His glory in your life.

The searcher of hearts is always looking and listening for the groaning of the Spirit inside our hearts. God is always having conversations and communion in our hearts. When there are no more words to pray, the Spirit of God intercedes with groanings at the intersection of ruin and misery within the Christ Follower.

You must share in God’s sufferings to share in His glory. However, suffering when complete gives way to a beautiful witness of His glory and that is enough. God uses suffering, emptiness and troubled times of unanswered prayers to build His character in us, conforming us to Christ, and prepare us for final glory when heaven and earth become one.

You might not get what you thought you needed, but you will get what brings Him the most glory. Sometimes it takes getting nothing to get everything.

Romans 8:26-30 (NKJV)
26 Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for uswith groanings which cannot be uttered. 27 Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.

Godthere

I’m convinced that nothing in the hands of God can fall apart. He is the creator and controller of all things. His sovereignty can’t be thwarted. Now, I must confess. There have been times in my life, those first three sentences seemed like a cruel joke. I’ve had things appear to fall apart and fall to the floor of my life. I would say to myself, “How can things this bad happen to me- a follower of the Christ?”

I’m not sure how to answer that question perfectly, nor am I convinced I even need an answer for trouble finding me. I’m just sure God has not lost control. Ephesians 1:11 says, “…He works all things according to the purpose of His will….”

I find comfort by looking back on the last days of Jesus. Everything in the Gospel’s read like His life was out of control. His friends forsook him. He was attacked by loneliness. Those in power falsely tried him. He was physically and emotionally abused and tortured. He was crucified. All of this took place, and He was innocent.

No events in the life of Christ were beyond God’s authority. From a human view, they seem random; they seem like bad luck, or a case of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. However, that’s just not the case. God was in control at all times. Likewise, none of the events of our lives are out of God’s control when bad things are happening to us. You must not relate bad things happening to you as proof God is not there. He is the God that is never absent in your life.

Yes, “Bad things” happen to the lives of those who follow Christ. However, He has promised to always be with us. He is mightier than anything that comes against you. Psalm 93:4 says, “Mightier than the thunder of the great waters, mightier than the breakers of the sea–the LORD on high is mighty.” Yes, we live in a world where bad things still happen, but have hope, for God is at work in your life to accomplish His plans in and through you.

Romans 8:28 says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to His purpose.”

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Philippians 2:19-23
19 But I trust in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you shortly, that I also may be encouraged when I know your state. 20 For I have no one like-minded, who will sincerely care for your state. 21 For all seek their own, not the things which are of Christ Jesus. 22 But you know his proven character, that as a son with his father he served with me in the gospel. 23 Therefore I hope to send him at once, as soon as I see how it goes with me.

Paul looked around his spiritual table and saw in Timothy a heart that was faithful, available and teachable. Paul saw a heart in Timothy that noticed the unnoticed of the world. Paul was confident in Timothy that he truly was a man that could see the invisible of the world and love them with the love of Christ.

When you first read this portion of scripture it looks like ordinary traveling plans, but when you lift the hood and look into the engine that actually drives this passage you see the heart of God that is undivided beating inside Timothy. Timothy didn’t seek  his own interest first; he first looked after the things of God. Paul said, “I have no one like-minded…” In other words, when he looked for an undivided heart around his table he found Timothy.

Let me ask you a question today. If you were sitting around Paul’s table would he have picked you? At first, it’s easy to answer yes, but don’t be to quick to pat yourself on the back-myself included. We are called to see the unnoticed and to respond with the love of Christ. In order to see them and love them with action, we must have an undivided heart of obedience.

Have you ever noticed a person that is outside your circle and alone? You see them and know in your heart they need someone to reach out to them but instead of taking a few moments to encourage them, you pass on by. Has that ever happened to you? You know God is leading you to talk with them, but you go in another direction, thus untimely saying no to God.

I’m always amazed at how demons obey God; nature always obeys God, but man struggles with it. I challenge you today to make a commitment to obey God and notice the unnoticed of the world around you. I challenge you today to see the invisible and love them with the love of Christ. I challenge you because I challenge myself to do the same also. It’s just too easy to walk on by, and as Christ followers we must change that quickly.

God is looking around His table for an undivided heart. He is looking of a heart for the invisible.  Will He choose you today? Will you obey?

stop_complaining

Complaining feels like the right thing to do, when my world is falling apart. Complaining makes me feel like I’m fighting against injustice in my life. Complaining is something I falsely think I can control and direct in any direction that makes me feel a little better.

What about you? How do you view complaining? Do you like it? Does it feel good to complain when your world is not lining up the way you expected?

We like to complain because it seems to get the discontentment that is on the inside of us out. However, complaining is just downright wrong to do, and it changes nothing.

Complaining will never change the problem or problems you are facing. In fact, complaining most often causes more problems. Complaining spreads discontentment through your spirit faster than anything else I know.

The most devastating fruit of complaining is it keeps me from obeying God’s word and trusting Him with all of my life. When you complain, you reach into the hand of God and take little bits and pieces that you think should be changed the way you see it and not the way God see’s it.

In Philippians 2:14 we are instructed to “Do all things without grumbling…”

Notice the two words, ‘all things.’ That certainly sums it up! We are not to complain because God is in control of our lives. When we complain it is a form of non-trust in God’s working in and through our lives. When we complain, it is disobedience and unbelief. Worst of all, Complaining  gives place to the enemy to work stronger in your life.

So, what is the answer? What must we do?

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 gives us the answer and what to do. It tells us, “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

For more on Complaining and some practical steps, see this post.

doubt

If you have ever had a friend, or a family member doubt the faith, you know how disheartening that can be. It cuts your very soul. In some cases, your friend or family member simply doubts something in the bible, but in other cases, they may even depart from the faith altogether. It hurts to see this happen, and it give rise to many emotions inside of you. In fact, many of those emotions, if not submitted to the Lord, can damage the one doubting, if unleashed on them improperly by you.

Here, are some things to do when doubt has captured your friend or family member.

1. Keep your emotions on the altar

Take all your angry feelings, and leave them on the altar of God. He can handle your pain better than you can. Worship Him until the feelings of hurt, anger, and betrayal slip away.

2. Trust that God is still asking questions through them

Even John the Baptist doubted at one point in his life, and sent word asking if Jesus was really the one. Once He heard the right answer, he was unchained from doubt, and moved on in His faith. All great men and women of God have doubted at some point in their walk with Christ.

3. When they become unfaithful, God doesn’t

2 Timothy 2:13 tells us, “if we are faithless, he will remain faithful, for he cannot disown himself.” God is faithful and will continue to work in their lives, even when they have stopped moving forward with God. You must remember, God loves your friend or family member more than you ever can.

4. God can move mountains

What is impossible for man is never impossible for God. He can move doubt over the cliff in their life in a moment of time. Mighty to Save by Hillsong says this,
Savior
He can move the mountains
My God is mighty to save
He is mighty to save
Forever
Author of Salvation
He rose & conquered the grave
Jesus conquered the grave

5. Finally, my favorite verse that many forget about.

MERCY! Jude 1:22 tells us, “22 And have mercy on those who doubt;” You must never forget that mercy wins over judgment. When you want to give judgement to the one you love…GIVE MERCY

God bless you
Pastor Steve

decision-making-processes1
Decisions sometimes are easy but lets fact it, that’s a rarity. Decisions, most of the times are difficult. The process of deciding what to do can become overwhelming if you don’t have a way to walk through the decision-making responsibility. Trying to figure out what the will of God is on a decision can be life altering for you and your family. So, what are you to do? Below are some things that have helped me over the years. I hope they will help you also.

1. Identify All The Options

I know this sounds elementary but try and think through all the different choices you can make and write them down. Write down what the likely outcome of each of them might be. If they pop into your head and heart, then they just might be worth writing them down. This list will help you with the next step.

2. Talk With A Friend

Run your thoughts by someone who is your friend and that you respect. They might have a few more thoughts that you can write down and might shed some new light on the problem. After, making your list and talking with a friend, take it to God in prayer.

3. Prayer Is Your Connection To God

Take your list, your heart, and your thoughts to the Lord. I know He might have a different plan when it’s all said and done, but God loves to hear your ideas. He loves you and gave you a brain to think with. Pray has a way of removing fear from the decision making process. Prayer gives birth to faith, joy and the power of God’s love connecting with you on a very personal level. Pray you list and thoughts out loud to the Lord…they can become clearer that way.

4. Communication With God Filters Out Moral Issues

As you pray, God will reveal to you, and show you, the moral or non-moral areas of your thoughts. Be prepared to get rid of anything He reveals to you that doesn’t line up with His heart or His Word. If any of your thoughts go against a biblical command, then the decision is an easy one…OBEY His Word.

5. Embrace God’s Decision As You Decision

God will show you and speak to you the right thing to do when it’s the right time. It is essential that your will is submitted to God’s. In order to be submitted, you must be humble enough to accept His decision as your own. Sometimes it will be a combination of your thoughts and His, but more often, it will be different and even better. He is the author and the finisher of your faith. Trust that fact.

i-don_t-know

I constantly have to remind myself that the unknown to me is not unknown to God.

To have all the steps planned, and documented seems safe. However, having it all planned can be an unsafe place to be in your walk with God.

I’m not advocating not planning ministry, or  not thinking through what needs to happen next,  but I’ve noticed that the unknown times seems to be where God shows up and does His best work.

I think we can spend way to much time praying for God to show us the next step when the real blessing could be in not knowing what to do next. Sometimes waiting in the unknown is the most holy place you can be.

So instead of poor mouthing the unknown times, celebrate the fact that you don’t have a clue and just watch God work. I promise you will not be disappointed.

 

future

Emerson once said, “Do not waste yourself in rejection, nor bark against the bad, but chant the beauty of the good.”

Are you wasting yourself? If you are spending unhealthy time cursing the closed door…you might be. The secret to moving forward is to stop cursing  the closed door, and walk through the open door God has for you.

When I look back on my life, there have been many times I’ve wasted my time and God’s by remaining angry or confused over the closed door.  I’m older now, and more mature in my faith. I tend to move forward much faster now. I know without a doubt that God always opens a door when He closes another.

It’s only in moving forward that you will accomplish what God has called you to do for Him. You can no longer stay where you are, and at the same time, you can’t go backwards. Going forward is where God is calling you. Yes, it can be painful to move forward, but moving forward brings healing. To stand still…to go backwards…will only bring you more pain and pause your life to all that God wants to do through you.

Moving forward means to let go of what YOU want and embrace what GOD wants for your life. He knows the future and the sure path to get you there. You can curse the closed door, you can stand there with your arms folded in angry, or you can move forward for His glory and your healing.

To experience Psalm 147:3 which says,  “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”- YOU MUST WALK THROUGH THE OPEN DOOR.

What are your thoughts? Share with us by leaving a comment.

 

one_voice_logo
The day you were born the world smiled with possibility found only in you. You matter. It’s that simple. To have a different opinion would be to stand in defiance of what God says about your gift of life. The world, and negative experiences of life, has a way of stripping you of the importance you have in the body of Christ… if you give in to them. They speak constantly, methodically and persistently… until you begin not only to believe you have no place, but you live like you have no place, which is not living at all.

The answer is not in resisting the voices…no, the answer is found in listening to the one voice that is above all other voices. The voice you should listen to is that of your creator- who never has, nor ever will, make a mistake in placing you in the body of Christ.

You were never meant to settle for a life that is unsurprising. You were never meant to live a life without risk. You were never meant to live a life without impossible obstacles to defeat. No, you were called to a new world journey with God leading every step of the way. You were called to radically follow Him, so He can build a kingdom legacy through your life that brings Him all the glory. Live loud today because only one voice matters. God has giving you His gift of one voice. Open that gift and hear what He has to say.

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Sometimes you don’t need to know what to DO. Sometimes you simply need to know what to BE. When life is not adding up and everything that can go wrong is going wrong…we desperately look for answers to why and what to DO next. Let me ask you two questions that I want you to think about today.

What if God doesn’t want to give you an answer to what to DO next?

What if God wants you to just BE instead of giving you something to DO?

I contend that sometimes God simply wants us to BE, instead of showing us what to DO.

You see, DOING makes us feel like something is happening…that’s why we like it. On the other hand, BEING feels like nothing is happening and that’s why we hate it some much.

Here’s the truth. God is in both of them and at this time in your life he might just be calling you to simply trust and just BE. Never forget, our BEING is found in HIm and our DOING is commissioned by HIM. Maybe, just maybe…this is a time in your life to just BE , while you wait for the DOING to arrive.

What are your thought? Share with us by leaving a comment.