Saturday, December 31, 2011

A Time for Everything

"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven." (Ecclesiastes 3:1)

This verse of scripture came to mind as I was seeking the Lord for what to share for my final blog of 2011. I thought of many other things, but as I read this verse in regards to the close of the year, it was quite appropriate.

The close of the year signifies transition. It's like the close of a chapter of a great novel; the previous chapter ended and it is now time to transition into what is to come in the next chapter. This is where we are now. 2011 has come to a close and it is time to turn the page into 2012.

For some, this creates a great sense of relief because of the hardships and challenges of the previous year. Finally, a fresh start. For some, the close of the year and beginning of a new year creates a sense of expectation and anticipation. This is the year for the manifestation of my expectations. For some, it's a time of resolutions. Time to get the weight off, set priorities, develop my relationship with the Lord.

No matter where you find yourself, this truth remains; 2011 is over and 2012 has begun. This is indicative of a season of change. I am grateful for this change because it reminds me that the past is over and my future awaits. What will I do with what is to come? Will I wallow in my past failures or will I worship with an expectation and anticipation of what the Lord has for me in the year to come?

Take a look at the following verse in Philippians for the correct question that we should ask ourselves as we embark upon 2012. Philippians 3:13-14 says, "Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus." This verse clearly encourages us as believers to forget the past (the good, bad and ugly), and "press toward the mark." This pressing is indicative of moving forward toward something. You can never move forward in anything if you wallow in world of what it "coulda, woulda, shoulda been." God clearly tells us to forget all that was and press toward what He has already preordained to come.

I pray that this creates a sense of excitement, expectation and anticipation in your soul. Don't allow the enemy torment you another day over the past. Trust God to enable you to live in the present to prepare you for the future. In 2012, the Kingdom Shall Prevail! He has given us the keys to the kingdom through the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ our Lord! He has given us the victory to receive as a gift, not something to be achieved! Therefore, rejoice in the Lord! The victory has already been won! You are triumphant and victorious in Him!

So, get ready for what is to come in this season of transition. The way as already been paved. Don't look back. Press forward. Your destiny awaits!

2012 The Kingdom Prevails,

Dr. Sheila

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Acknowledge Him

The Bible says in Proverbs 3:5-6, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not to your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct your paths." Many of us know this scripture by heart, but is it in our hearts to the point that we are applying it to our every day lives?

I know for myself that I have asked the question, "What does it mean to 'acknowledge Him'?" I have heard many messages on the subject, but the statement, "acknowledge Him," still seemed ambiguous. Therefore, I, as perhaps you have too, struggled to acknowledge God and find it difficult to apply this scripture to your every day life.

Today I want to bring some clarity to that phrase. Very simply put, to acknowledge God is to consider Him. Take a look at these two verses.

Hebrews 3:1 Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus.

Hebrews 12:3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.

Notice the command to "consider" in both of these verses. To consider Him means to acknowledge Him. To acknowledge Him means to consider Him. This is practically done by rehearsing who He is, rehearsing what He has said, rehearsing what He has done and rehearsing what He will do.

Now, let's put this into an everyday situation. Suppose you have a long forgotten debt that has now made it to a collection agency which has an attorney now trying to collect the debt from you. You are frustrated because you don't remember the debt, nor do you have the money to pay the debt. This is how you acknowledge Him in that situation.

1. Rehearse who He is - He is El Elohim, the Creator of heaven and earth. He is El Shaddai; the God of more than enough who promised to supply all of your need. He is Jehovah Jireh your provider. He is Jehovah Nissi; your victory, banner and standard. He is Jehovah Shalom your peace. He will give you peace in the midst of the storm.

2. Rehearse what He has said - He said in His Word that He is a refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. He said nothing is too hard for Him. He said that if you would call upon Him, He will answer you and be with you in times of trouble. He said if you would give it would be given back to you. He said that if you do not rob Him in your tithes and offering He would rebuke the devourer for your sake. He said that if you would give cheerfully, He would make all grace, every favor and earthly blessing come to you in abundance so that you will always, under all circumstances and whatever the need be self-sufficient, possessing enough to require no aid or support and furnished in abundance for every good work and charitable donation. He promised to supply all your need!

3. Rehearse what He has done - He has provided in the past. You have always had a roof over your head. People have given to you to help meet your needs. People have blessed you with the things that you have wanted. God did all this through them.

4. Rehearse what He will do - God is not like people. He tells no lies. He is not like humans. He does not change His mind. When He says something, He does it. When He makes a promise, He keeps it (Numbers 23:19 GW). When God sends forth His Word, it does not return void. It produces fruit. It will accomplish what He wants it to.

The word "rehearse" means to recite or say over. Therefore, to acknowledge Him means to say out loud, over and over who He is, what He has said, what He has done and what He will do. As you do this, He will direct your paths. He will make the crooked things straight and the rough places smooth. He will do this because by acknowledging Him you are saying that you trust Him to work your situation out for your good.

So there you have it; how to practically acknowledge Him. Apply this teaching to your life today to whatever challenged with, whether it be your money, health, marriage or any other area. Acknowledge Him. He will produce results.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Dr. Sheila

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Trust In The Lord

The other day while I was praying, the Lord spoke this to my heart, "It all boils down to trust. Will you trust Me to do what I have said in My word? Trust in Me with ALL your heart and lean not to your own understanding. Acknowledge Me in ALL your ways and I will direct your paths says the Lord."

This word just resonated in my spirit as life has been presenting itself unfavorably in a few areas. Then today during my devotion time I was reading an article from a newsletter that our Bishop had written. In this article he was sharing about the Ten Kingdom Keys to Maturity. Key number 2 is The Ability to Trust God When Things Go Wrong. This is what he stated about this key: "Trust in God when things go wrong, when people disappoint you, when you are mystified and don't know why things are happening to you." As I read this, I knew God was speaking to my heart to trust Him when I don't know why things are going the way they are going.

One of the scripture references for this key was Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. I also want you to look at Psalm 91:2 I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust. Notice that both of these verses reference the Lord as the one in whom our trust is to be placed. Now, I'm sure that you, like myself have put your trust in other people and you have been let down. However, these verses don't tell us to put our trust in other people. We are instructed to put our trust in the Lord. Why? Because He is God, He is faithful and He is in ultimate control. Since He is in ultimate control, you and I can both trust that it's all going to work out for the good.

I do realize that life happens and many times leaves even the strongest believer mystified. Nevertheless, we must fix our eyes upon Jesus. We must concentrate on Him and what He has said in His Word. He is not a man that He should lie; nor the son of man that He should repent. That which He has promised He shall bring to pass. He promised to perfect that which concerns you so no matter what it is, He shall perfect it by making the crooked places straight and the rough places smooth.

Let this bring great consolation and comfort to your soul. As you do, you are teaching and training your soul to trust God. The enemy may blow smoke, but remember the Lord and listen for His voice when in the fog and follow that voice. He will lead you to safety every time which will strengthen your trust in Him.

I pray that these words will be a source of encouragement for you; especially during this holiday season when you may be tempted to trust in what you may be getting instead of in the giver of all things. Remember Joshua 1:8 and meditate on Proverbs 3:5. As you do, you will be able to say in the midst of any situation, "In Thee O Lord, I put my trust."

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Dr. Sheila

Friday, December 16, 2011

Stay In Your Lane

Have you ever watched a track meet and one of the runners crossed over into his or her opponents lane? Most of the time, if not all the time, because of the crossing over, someone gets hurt or doesn't finish the race. When I think of this in terms of a believer's walk with the Lord, the implications are clear. Stay in your lane to avoid problems and pitfalls.

God has created each and everyone of us with a specific purpose (or lane) that we are to function in. Romans 12:4-6 says, "For as we have many members in one body , and all members have not the same office: So we , being many , are one body in Christ , and every one members one of another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us , whether prophecy , let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith." In other words everyone in the body has different gifts that we are to function in the capacity that God has given us to function.

This is a powerful truth and frees us all up from coveting someone else's gift. God showed me this the other day when the fifth book that I wrote, Treat Him Like a King, came in the mail. It was during my devotion time and I was listening to the new William McDowell Arise cd that God showed me a track with many lanes. I saw people in those lanes holding signs representing the gift that was on their life. I began to rejoice because though I love to sing and worship, I don't have to covet William McDowell's gift. He is a worship leader. I am a preacher. He has his lane. I have mine.

I pray that those struggling with their lane would embrace the gift that God has placed within them. This is for the greater benefit of the individual and the Kingdom. After all, that's what it's all about anyway right? It's all about the Lord Jesus Christ and His Kingdom purposes being established in the earth in, through and by His people.

Therefore, let this inspire you to stay in your lane. It is a wonderful place to be where God has created you to be. Ask Him for the grace to discover, develop and walk in dominion in the area He has given you. Let this drive you to run your race of life with endurance purposing not to cross over into someone else's lane. It's not worth the injury to you or your fellow co-laborer in the gospel.

Until next time, remember as always, it's all about Him!

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Dr. Sheila

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Wait On The Lord

Praise the Lord! This is the day that the Lord has made and I will rejoice and be glad in it!

It's been a while since I have last posted anything, but God has been speaking and stirring in my heart. I have such an expectation in these last few weeks of 2012 and I shall wait with an anticipation that God will show Himself strong on our behalf.

I shall wait. You should wait. We all should wait, but sometimes waiting is difficult for even the strongest Christian especially when expecting and anticipating a move from God. I remember being pregnant with our son Joshua. The doctor said that his due date was August 14, 1993. I was so delighted and excited, until August 14th came and went and I was still pregnant. Well, the good thing is that we all know that no woman is pregnant forever (This truth was no where near my thought process). He came when God said on September 2, 1993.

Then there was the waiting for my book Words of Encouragement to be released. It seemed like forever and the release date kept changing. I wasn't having flash backs to when Joshua was born either to help with the waiting. I was ready to have the book in hand! One day, I was praying asking the Lord about the release date of the book and Robert came in the room. I didn't know that he had come in, but he overheard me praying and said, "Sweet, books are like babies. Their due date is subject to change." The profundity of this statement brought me to tears as a great wave of peace flooded my soul.

So what does the Word say about waiting? It has much to say, but one particular passage stands out in Isaiah 40:28-31: "Isaiah 40:28-31 Hast thou not known? hast thou not heard, that the everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is weary? There is no searching of his understanding. He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall: But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint."

God never gets weary or tired, but He knows that in our humanity causes us to fall prey to weariness and fatigue. However, He gives us the remedy. If we wait on Him, according to Him, He will renew our strength. This is good news and lets me know that waiting is a good thing. Our flesh does not like to wait, but if we train it in this precious spiritual commodity, our lives will be the better for it.

Waiting on God is not a difficult truth to grasp. It simply means to stop, be still, be silent and focus in on Him. If you would train your soul in this truth it will teach you to trust Him instead of going your own way and making your own bread; and we all know where that leads.

So today, meditate on this final passage found in Psalm 27:13-14 "I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord In the land of the living. Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord!" Don't give up and lose heart. You shall see the goodness of the Lord your God on this side of glory! Heed the command. Wait on the Lord! He promised that He will strengthen your heart!

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Dr. Sheila

Friday, September 23, 2011

Prayer on FOCUS

I am so grateful to the Lord today that He has allowed us to partner with Him in prayer! What an awesome thing for God to choose to use us when He doesn't need us. It's like the child who helps his father build a tree house. When the project is complete, the young boy grins from ear to ear marveling at the finished product. He then looks up at his dad and says, "Look at this awesome tree house that we built." The father is just as proud to have had his son help him build the tree house. Even though he knows that all his son did throughout the entire project was hand him the nails.

That's how our prayers are with God. He doesn't need us, but has chosen to use us. The incredible thing about this whole partnership is that this is the way that He gets things done on the earth; us and Him. Glory.

I said all that to say that we should always pray about everything. In our praying, we should be specific, using specific Scriptures from the Bible to make our prayers. God is not watching over our complaining and whining, but He is watching over His Word to perform it. Therefore, today, I am giving you a prayer I wrote for FOCUS to help you to focus. You can also pray this prayer for anyone else who may need some focus in their lives. Whatever the case, you can be confident that God will hear and answer as you have prayed according to the Word of God.

I challenge you to write out your own prayers and watch God move on your behalf as you direct your prayers to Him. This will increase your faith as you find out for yourself that God is truthful to His Word and faithful to perform it because of your prayers.

Here is the prayer on FOCUS.

Praise the Lord! This is the day that You have made oh God and I will rejoice and be glad in it. You are a great God and Your mercy is from everlasting to everlasting. Your faithfulness endures to all generations.

You said in Your Word that everything has a season and to everything under the sun you have given a purpose. So I thank you for your purpose being filled out in my life. I pray that you would give to me a spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of you; the eyes of my understanding being enlightened that I may know what is the hope of Your calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints. Once my eyes are enlightened Father, I pray for the ability to focus on that which  you have enlightened me to.

I pray that I would daily fix my eyes on Jesus who is the author and finisher of my faith. I pray that I would look to Jesus to have my faith and hope strengthened. In order to do that I pray that I would first get rid of the weight of sin that so easily besets and press toward the goal. You showed me in your Word that Christ has already run the race. He is the perfect ensample and example. He is the Author and Finisher, Alpha and Omega, Beginning and the End. Hallelujah! He will perfect that which concerns me. Jesus for the joy set before Him endured. His goal was to present the church before the Father. He had a goal before Him. I pray that you would give me kingdom goals and the plans to accomplish them. As I carry out your kingdom plans I pray that I would always consider Jesus and fix my mind on Him. I take my eyes off of self, others and circumstances. I fix my eyes on Christ alone.

I decree and declare that I shall overcome the obstacles. You said in 1 John 5:4, "For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that  overcometh the world, even our faith. 5 Who is he  that  overcometh the world, but he  that  believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?" So according to this scripture Father, I shall, by the power of your Holy Spirit because I am born of you above all and in every circumstance, overcome the world by faith. I will not to love, belong or yield to the world. I am an overcomer, overcoming the world, the flesh and the devil by faith in the Word of God. I am an overcomer! I am more than an conquerors and therefore more than able to overcome!

Oh God, in the name of Jesus, I pray that as I endeavor to focus on you I would communicate with you daily in prayer. You said in your word that men ought to always pray and not faint. You said in your word that this is the confidence that we have before you when we pray that if we pray according to  your will you hear us and since you hear us we have the petitions that we have asked of you. Therefore I purpose to come boldly before the throne of grace to receive mercy and grace to help in time of need. I will not be anxious and lose focus. But in all things with prayer and supplication with thanksgiving I will make our requests known to you. In other words I will worry about nothing and pray about everything because worry causes me to lose focus.

Father, you are the One who causes all things to happen in their "seasons" and gives everything a "purpose." Help me to understand whatever season I am in in life. It is evident from the examination of your character that you are all-knowing. You know the end of everything, and all that is done is controlled by your providential hand. All the events of history have been fitted into Your timetable. So I ask in the name of Jesus that you would enlighten my heart and mind and help me to focus on your sovereign perspective. I can rest with peace and joy in my heart, knowing that you are in control of everything.

Finally Father, I purpose in my heart to day to stand on your Word. I realize recognize and know that you bring dead things to life and create new things out of nothing. Therefore, I will not be moved by what I see, feel or hear. I will only be moved by your Word, for I am fully convinced that you are more than able to do whatever you have promised according to your Word. When the storms of life come, quicken my spirit to speak the Word only. I will stand on your Word at all costs, and when I have done all that I can do, I will stand.

You said in your Word, "Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you." Therefore I take authority over the enemy who would try to trick me and cause me to lose focus. I expose your plot, ploy and plan to distract me and command you to cease and desist in my affairs. The blood of Jesus is against you and my heart is fixed and steadfast, always trusting in the Lord.

Now I thank you and praise you in advance for accomplishing your Kingdom purposes as result of being focused. You are a great God and I am fully persuaded that you will perfect that which concerns me. I rejoice in you the God of my salvation! I have a great expectation in You! In Jesus name, Amen!

God bless and have a wonderful day!

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Thursday, September 22, 2011

S - Stand

Good morning! Today I will finish my teaching on FOCUS. I know you have been blessed as I have. The Lord continues to minister to my heart to fix my eyes on Him, that I have the faith to overcome the obstacles, He delights in communing with me and as I commune with Him, He gives me the ability to understand what His will is for my life. I do believe that if you meditate what I have shared with you, God will strengthen your heart as you stay focused too.

The final point in this teaching is Stand. Ephesians 6:13 declares, "Wherefore take unto you the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand." This a powerful verse of scripture that gives a command. If we heed the command, we are guaranteed victory.

I must admit, sometimes it is hard to stand. We are living in the last and evil days. People are sick, suffering and surrounded by seemingly hopeless situations. I am in that number too as we have a dear member in our church who has been sick for the past five months. Looking at the severity of her sickness, I found my heart fainting.

Oh, but God! He said after you have done all you know to do STAND and that is just what I did! Back in July we came across another dear saint who was ill and from seeing her God spoke to my heart. He said, "Don't be moved by what you see. Allow what you see to move you to pray." Well glory! I received the Word of the Lord which translates STAND!

No matter what you see, STAND! No matter what you hear, STAND! No matter how you feel, STAND! Stand on what? Stand on the Word of God! Purpose to not be moved by what you see, feel or hear. Only be moved by the Word of God. Allow the Word of God to move you to pray and SPEAK THE WORD ONLY!

By doing this, we follow the command spoken in James 4:7, "Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you." As believers when we speak the Word only in the midst of adverse circumstances we are submitting to God. The devil can't stand this and it puts him to flight.

So, today is your day to STAND! God has promised the victory. All you have to do is show up and STAND! God is among those who are for you and not against you. If He said, "Stand," then stand and watch and see Him give you the victory!

That's all for today. I love you. God bless you and stay tuned tomorrow for the prayer on FOCUS.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

U - Understand What The Will of The Lord Is

Praise the Lord! This year has flown by! August (my birth month) was a blur and now we are mid-way through September! God has been good to us this year and we have so much to be grateful for.

I left off in my last blog in the middle of a series on FOCUS. I want to recap what I shared with you and finish the last two letters so that you have the complete teaching. On Saturday I will post a prayer for FOCUS so that you can have to pray over your life or the lives of others needing focus.

As you recall, in FOCUS, "F" stood for fix your eyes on Jesus. He is the author and finisher of our faith. Everything begins and ends with Him. "O", is for overcoming obstacles. God has given us the ability through Christ to overcome any obstacle in our way. The way we overcome is by faith, and by faith we speak to the mountains and they must move. "C" is for commune with God in prayer. He knows the obstacles seem big, but there is nothing too big for our God. Talk to Him about whatever it is you are facing and trust Him to see you through.

This brings us to "U." This stands for Understand What The Will of the Lord Is. The Bible declares in Ephesians 5:17, "Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is." As believers, when we spend time with the Lord He will give us the understanding we need to face whatever season in life we are in. It is important to understand; submit to God's point of view on the matter, in every area of your life. When you do, you will be able to connect the dots, see the big picture and walk out in wisdom the will of the Lord for your life.

Don't be a fool. Purpose in your heart to understand and see as God sees so that you can see what He is saying. You see what I am saying? The only way you will understand is to connect with the one from whom understanding comes. Proverbs 2:6 says, "For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding."

So, today, if you are lacking wisdom, knowledge or understanding consider what I am saying and seek the Lord. He will give you understanding in everything. He will give you the ability to see as He sees as you seek Him for the ability to see as He sees.

I trust you have been blessed and I look forward to tomorrow as I will finish up on FOCUS. God bless you and have a wonderful day in Him.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila Poole

Friday, July 29, 2011

Commune With God

Praise the Lord! We serve a great and mighty God! Welcome again to my "What Does The Word Say?" blog. I trust you will be blessed by today's teaching on the "c" of FOCUS; Commune With God.

God has really been ministering to my heart almost every day on this word FOCUS. So much so that I have prayed it over my children, myself and others who may need to bring things into focus. I have been tremendously blessed by what the Lord is speaking and He has truly strengthened my prayer life.

I delight in spending time with the Lord every day. I have a set thing that I do, and probably two months ago or so things began to seem a little dry. I talked to the Lord about it and shortly after that, while away on a ministry trip God told me to pray first. I immediately changed my structure and my devotion time has been enriched.

Prayer is the staple of ones devotional time because everything stems from prayer. There are countless verses on prayer, stories on prayer and actual prayers that should spark every believer to do the same for God to get involved with the affairs of their lives.
Luke 18:1 says "Men ought to always pray." Philippians 4:6 is summed up in worry about nothing and pray about everything. 1 John 5:14-15 is one of my favorites, exhorting believers that when we pray according to God's will we can be confident that He hears and expect an answer. 1 Thessalonians 5:17 simply says, "Pray without ceasing."

With these and countless other verses on prayer, I pray they would be the impetus to drive you to commune with God in prayer. What is it that you are face with today? Are you sick in your body? Pray. Do you need a breakthrough? Pray. Are you suffering from lack and not enough? Pray? Is your spouse acting contrary to the scriptures? Pray. Do you desire a spouse? Pray!

Prayer is the vehicle that will cause you to fix your eyes on Jesus and give you the strength to overcome the obstacles so get to praying! Quit whining, fussing, and complaining and pray. God is calling you to turn away from your problem and turn to Him in prayer. This is how you seek the Kingdom first. He knows what you have need of and wants to give you peace through prayer.

I love you. God bless you and may the Lord strengthen you as you commune with Him in prayer.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Overcome the Obstacles

Praise the Lord! I am so excited about our mantra this year: Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011. God has been faithful to meet us as we have trusted Him. I believe a key element in understanding the Kingdom of Heaven is to focus. It is necessary as I shared on the "f" of focus to fix our eyes on Jesus. He needs to be the focal point that our heart mind and soul is fixed upon in order to see His kingdom purposes fulfilled here on earth. Fixing our eyes on Jesus is the impetus that enables us through the power of the Holy Spirit to overcome the obstacles.

The Bible declares in 1 John 5:4-5, "For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. 5 Who is he who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?" Look at it in the New Living Translation, "For every child of God defeats this evil world, and we achieve this victory through our faith. 5 And who can win this battle against the world? Only those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God.

Keep these verses in mind as you think about being focused. God has told us in His Word that we have already overcome or defeated this evil world by faith. We overcome because we have a firm, reliant trust in what Jesus already accomplished on the Cross. We are not fighting to overcome. We have already overcome by the blood of the Lamb, the Word of our testimony and loving not our lives even unto death.

This is good news! I know you may be in a hard place right now, but declare in the midst of that hard place, "This I know that God is for me! I am an overcomer! I am more than a conqueror through Christ who loves me! I have the victory in every situation because it is the Lord who fights for me."

When you process the challenges of live through the above exhortations from the Word and any other victory promising scripture, you will be able to remain fixed on God's kingdom purposes. Remember, the enemy is trying to trick you into giving up. Don't give up now! You have the stuff to stick. Besides, how will you ever find out that you are an overcomer unless God puts you in a situation where you have to trust Him to overcome?

I am so excited about what the Lord has in store for you. As you go throughout the rest of your day, call to mind these simple truths. You are not to love, belong to, or yield to the world. You are an overcomer, overcoming the world, the flesh and the devil by faith in the Word of God! Hallelujah!

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Friday, July 15, 2011

Fix Your Eyes on Jesus

Praise the Lord! Pastor Rob and I are in Dover, Delaware doing a Singles Conference at Crossroad Christian Church. We are having an awesome time in the Lord and God has been speaking to me about focus.

The Word of God enables us to keep all things in focus in every area of our lives. However, many believers live blurry, obscure lives because of their lack to process and see everything through the Word. Therefore, I want to share with you an acronym for focus that the Lord gave me. I trust it will enrich your life.

F - Fix your eyes on Jesus. The first part of Hebrews 12:2 says, "Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith." The word "looking" in the Greek is aphorao and it means according the Strong's Dictionary to look away steadfastly or intently toward a distant object. Metaphorically, to behold in the mind, to fix the mind upon.

What this verse is encouraging all believers to do is to fix the mind steadfastly on Jesus. The world offers many distractions and is constantly trying to lure Christians away from the Lord. Yet, the key component of focus is to fix the mind. Don't fix your mind on what you see. Don't fix your mind on your lack, sickness or marital status. Fix your mind on Jesus, and to fix your mind on Jesus is to fix your mind on the Word of God with the intent to obey it (Joshua 1:8).

2 Corinthians 4:18 in the Good News Bible says, "For we fix our attention, not on things that are seen, but on things that are unseen. What can be seen lasts only for a time, but what cannot be seen lasts forever." Listen to the wisdom in this verse! Fix your mind on Jesus; not your marital status, not your money or your muffins (your sweet children)! Those things are all subject to change!

So today, whatever situation, status or state that you may find yourself in know that God is more that able to change it around for His glory. Just be patient. He is building character in you so that you can fulfill His Kingdom purposes for your life. When you see things as He sees them, He will bring all things into focus.

I trust you were blessed today by my blog. Visit tomorrow as we look at the second letter in this acronym, Overcome Obstacles.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Monday, June 13, 2011

The Cure for Unbelief

Good morning to all! The Word at DCCLV on Sunday June 12, 2011 was truly convicting. I believe many of us from that word did a self check and saw where we were lacking. I, myself went home and immediately rehearsed to retain.

One of the most powerful things to me that was said was what Pastor shared from Joshua's summer college course. His professor told the class that the students who go and study the class material immediately after class retain 85% of the information that was taught in the class. Those students who do not go over the lesson immediately only retain 5%. These are startling statistics, but it showed the man in the mirror the reason for unbelief.

We all understand Romans 10:17 where it says that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. However, it is evident that faith has not come because of the level of unbelief that is in the life of many believers. I mean really, how many times have we not cast out the little demon in the little boy in our own life due to a lack of rehearsing the Word on that particular little demon in the little boy? If Jesus has given us power against unclean spirits to cast them out and to heal all manner of sickness and disease, why is the average believer not doing this?

The simple answer to this question is found in Matthew 17: 20. The Message translation says it this way, "Because you're not yet taking God seriously,"said Jesus."The simple truth is that if you had a mere kernel of faith, a poppy seed, say, you would tell this mountain, 'Move!' and it would move. There is nothing you wouldn't be able to tackle." If we would just take God seriously and meditate on His Word day and night and do what it says, we will make our own way prosperous and have good success (Joshua 1:8).

As believers, we need to pray and fast to build our own spiritual belief system; not to cast out certain demons. The belief system has to be built on the Word of God because unbelief comes in due to lack of trust in the Word of God due to lack of daily time spent in the Word of God. The other reason the belief system has to be built is because our natural tendency is to rebel against the Word of God. The is where the second type of unbelief comes in.

Hebrews 4:6 says, "Seeing therefore it remaineth that some must enter therein, and they to whom it was first preached entered not in because of unbelief." This word unbelief in the Greek is "apeitheia." It is disobedience; unwillingness to be persuaded and obstinacy. This unbelief is worse than the first (lack of trust) because the attitude of this person says, "Whatever. I will not believe."

Don't lack trust in God today or be a stubborn unbelieving believer. Take time out this week to rehearse this message so that you will retain the Word you heard. The cure for unbelief is simple. Follow Joshua 1:8 and Psalm 1:2. If you will be obedient to just these two verses, you will be cured of all unbelief.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Are You a Syncretist?

Several years ago, I preached a message entitled, The Power of Choice. In this message I was teaching that Satan is at the heart of all sin (1 John 3:8). He deceives people into believing a lie and counsels them to rebel against God. I showed that, the source of all sin is the devil but is manifested through internal (flesh), external (the world) and demonic (demons themselves) influences. In that message I was sharing how the sin influence was from the internal or the flesh. Today I will be dealing with the external sin influence through the world.

The external sin influence through the world is very strong. It has a very enticing animal magnetism that has the ability to draw away any believer. Yes, I said any believer. If we are not daily, (and I mean daily) reading, studying, meditating and doing the Word, any one of us will find ourselves drawn away by the world and its lust.

How can this be when the Word of God is so very clear on a believer's relationship with the world? Here are a few verses on the matter. Romans 12:2 – And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. 2 Corinthians 6:17-18 – Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. James 4:4 - Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God. 1 John 2:15-17 - Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. The Bible doesn't get any clearer than this, but yet many saints still struggle. Why?

It's because of syncretism. This word means the attempt or tendency to reconcile differing beliefs; the attempt to reconcile the kingdom of God with the kingdom of Satan. The problem with syncretism is that saints try to reconcile irreconcilable differences, people are unable to distinguish between the church and the world, it opens the door for demonic influence upon the believer who brings it into the church and it causes a humanistic gospel to be preached from the pulpit. So if you find yourself drawn to worldly pleasures and try to justify them, you have to as yourself, "Self, are you a syncretist?"

A syncretist then, is one who practices syncretism, which is nothing more than a fancy term for a carnal Christian. The carnal Christian has the mindset that, ‘I can be a Christian and still,’ trying to combine Christianity with a worldly lifestyle. THIS CANNOT BE DONE. Try as one may, this just cannot be done. Either you are saved sold out and on fire, or you are a syncretist, trying to hold on to your worldly attractions and still serve the Lord. At this point, if your grip on worldly pleasures is so tight that you don't want to let go, you might want to ask yourself, Am I really born-again?

I trust that this weeks topic pricked your conscience if you are not living a sold out life for God. Don't just skim over this devotional and to get to the next one. Do a self examination according to 2 Corinthians 13:5. See for yourself and I pray you discover that you are not a syncretist.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Who's Your Daddy

You have all heard the saying, "The fruit doesn't fall far from the tree." This statement testifies of itself as you look at your own children or the children of others and see them acting like their parents. This is no different in the kingdom. There is much controversy over who belongs to God and who doesn't. There really shouldn't be. If you are wondering for yourself where you have come from, you don't have to look any further than your character. Who do you act like on a consistent continual basis? God or the devil? Let's go a little farther.

The Bible declares in John 8:31-32, "Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; 32 And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. What did the Jews believe? They believed His claim that He was the Son of God and unless they believed on Him they would die in their sins. This is paramount in this passage of scripture because Jesus took time to further teach those who believed. He made an investment because they believed His claim. He showed them what it would take to be for real disciples.

Jesus invested in those who believed in Him. This word "believe," also means to be persuaded or convinced. Before you can judge your character to see who you belong to you must believe or be persuaded about the claim that Jesus Christ is Lord. Are you convinced about Jesus today? Are you persuaded that He came, died and rose again for your sins?

Jesus told those Jews who believed, "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed. This word "continue" holds the key to victory in your life. Many saints are frustrated, disillusioned and hard to get along with because they are convinced about the claim, but refuse to continue. This can also be depicted as salvation, sanctification and sonship; deliverance, development and dominion; grace, glory and growth. Being convinced about the claim begins with salvation, deliverance and grace. All believers have been saved and delivered by the grace of God, not by works lest any man should boast (Ephesians 2:8-9). You cannot as a born-again believer stop at salvation alone. True disciples move on to strengthen and deepen their relationship with God by continuing to consecrate, meditate and activate His Word in their lives on a daily basis. When this is done with passion and conviction, it will shape your character and conduct so that you don't have to ask yourself, Who is your daddy?

Whatever you continue in will be manifest in your character and conduct. Your character is the sum total of attributes and traits that influence your conduct. Your conduct is what you do; your behavior. Your conduct is a product of your character. Jesus was saying in John 8:31 that if you continue, remain and dwell in me then you will be my true disciplined learners for real. You will be transformed from a scrub to a scribe. Your character and conduct reflect what is in you. In order to continually reflect a godly character, we must continue.

No matter what you are going through you must continue. When you are frustrated, disillusioned and hard to get along with, you must continue. When you are confused, mystified and don't know why, YOU MUST CONTINUE. You are being developed so that you may reflect Christ. You are being developed so that you can victoriously glorify your Father. You are having your character and conduct shaped so that you can avoid the controversy because whatever you continue in will be manifested in your character and conduct. The pharisees argued this point with Jesus, but they were showing by their actions and attitudes that they were really children of the devil (John 8:37-39).

Jesus continued this discourse to the crowd. In John 8:37 He spoke directly to the pharisees saying, "Yes, I realize that you are descendants of Abraham. And yet some of you are trying to kill me because there's no room in your hearts for my message. 38 I am telling you what I saw when I was with my Father. But you are following the advice of your father. In essence He was challenging them with this question. Who is your daddy? They were offended that He would ask such a thing, but if it acts, walks and quacks like a duck...

It is important at this point to realize, recognize and know that godly character should be reflected in godly conduct, but, the two don't always merge. This is the complexity of the controversy; the conduct of the carnal Christian. These along with pseudo saints believe that they can be a Christian and still cuss, smoke, drink, slip, tip and dip. These are mere syncretists; people who are attempting to reconcile irreconcilable differences.

How a person continues will determine his/her character or conduct. How a person continues determines who their father really is. If you sow to the flesh reap the flesh. If you sow to the Spirit reap everlasting life (Gal 6:8). A lack of continuing in Him produces the controversy in believers and questions whether one really is a believer. This is a great controversy in the church, but the truth remains. You will know them by their fruit. Which again leads to the question, Who's your daddy?

The conclusion of the matter is that when you have a revelation that God is your Father, you will remain and continue in Him. When you continue, Your loving, caring, sharing, heavenly Father will reveal to you by His Spirit that to live is Christ and that you are complete in Him. This is where your victory lies. Now that you know who Your Daddy is and are sold out to Him, you can find out what your purpose is and complete your task in Him. This is done all by His grace and all for His glory. It really is all about Him.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven,

Pastor Sheila

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Let Us Go

In Mark 4 Jesus had just finished teaching on the kingdom parables. He asked them had they understood all that He had taught them and they said yes. That same day, He said to them in Mark 4:35, "Let us go over to the other side."

The important thing to remember and practically apply about this pericope of scripture is that as soon as you say you understand the kingdom a storm is on the way. Don't forget what you have heard. The disciples forgot what they heard and when the storm arose they doubted that Jesus was able to save them.

They woke Jesus up asking Him, "Don't you care that we are about to die." Doubt and fear will cause you to doubt and fear that God doesn't care. If He didn't care, He wouldn't have said, "Let US go." Don't forget what He said in the midst of the storm. Say what He said in the midst of the storm. Jesus rebuked the wind. Therefore, we must rebuke the contrary circumstances in life which requires speaking the Word with authority.

Jesus disciples heard Him, but at the first opportunity to do what they heard, they did not do what they heard. Why? The Word was not in them. If the word was in them they would have said what Jesus said to the storm. The way to get through the storm is to say the Word that is in you. You cannot say the Word that is in you if the Word is not in you.

This is why, according to James 1:21 that we must receive with meekness the engrafted word. The engrafted Word is able to save the soul. The engrafted Word will tell the soul, "Be quiet! We got this! You need the Word to be engrafted in you so that at all points it is what will come up out of you and keep you from sin. Psalm 119:11 says, Thy Word have I hid in my heart that I might not sin against thee. That word "hid" in the Hebrew refers to something that is hidden or stored away for future use. You must hide the Word in your heart during times of peace so that when the storms of life come you will not sin against God.

So the next time you find yourself in a storm, remember that it was God's idea for you to get to the other side of the storm. He is in the boat with you. He will see you through because there is kingdom work for you to do on the other side.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Friday, May 13, 2011

Under the Influence of Love

Good day! Just a little nugget I want to leave with you today. God has shown us the more excellent way of love in 1 Corinthians 13. Look at this note from the Spirit Filled Life Bible on love. "(SFL Note) 13:4-7 Love suffers long, having patience with imperfect people. Love is kind, active in doing good. Love does not envy; since it is non possessive and noncompetitive, it actually wants other people to get ahead. Hence it does not parade itself. Love has a self effacing quality; it is not ostentatious. Love is not puffed up, treating others arrogantly; it does not behave rudely, but displays good manners and courtesy. Love does not seek its own, insisting on its own rights and demanding precedence; rather it is unselfish. Love is not provoked; it is not irritable or touchy, rough or hostile, but is graceful under pressure. Love thinks no evil; it does not keep account of wrongs done to it; instead erases resentments. Love does not rejoice in iniquity, finding satisfaction in the shortcomings of others and spreading an evil report; rather, it rejoices in truth, aggressively advertising the good. Love bears all things, defending and holding people up. Love believes the best about others, credits them with good intentions, and is not suspicious. Love hopes all things, never giving up on people, but affirming their future. Love endures all things, persevering and remaining loyal to the end."

Meditate on this word today and let everything you do be influenced by love.

understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Find Reasons to Rejoice

You had a bad day at work. On the way home you were stuck in traffic, due to an accident causing a fifteen minute commute turn into one hour. You called home to tell the kids to start dinner because you knew you would be late. You finally make it home only to find out that the kids didn't start dinner because they got caught up in some t.v. sitcom rerun. Help Lord!

Many people find themselves in this type of scenario of life. However, as a believer, there is a sure fire antidote that will enable you to lay your head down on the pillow after a rough day with a smile on your face and peace in your heart. The antidote is found in Philippians 4:4. It says it this way in the NIV, "Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! What this scripture is telling you again and again is to find reasons to rejoice, or refuel your joy.

God knows you had a bad day at work, but at least you have a job. So you got stuck in traffic. Well, at least you had a full tank of gas, the air conditioner kept you cool the whole time and you got to listen to the Word you heard preached in church. Yes, the kids should have started dinner, but praise the Lord! You had money in the bank to order take out instead. The best part of that is that you can call in your order and they will bring it straight to your door! Hallelujah.

The enemy will do any and everything to steal your joy. In John 10:10, Jesus said that the thief comes to steal, kill and destroy. If the devil can steal your joy, he can kill your faith and destroy your future. That is why in the midst of whatever circumstance you are in your have to find reasons to rejoice. Rejoicing in calamity confuses the devil, counteracts his attacks and causes you to trust in the Lord. Whatever you are going through or whatever bad day you have faced, God will work it all out for His glory.

So today if you find yourself amidst a few contradictory circumstances, refuel your joy! Find reasons to rejoice! The Lord is on your side and He shall give you peace.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Deliver Me From Broadway

Women are frustrated, disillusioned and hard to get along with because they live their lives on a stage trying to cover up what is really going on in the heart. This takes way too much energy! I remember early in my walk with the Lord how I spent years trying to be someone else in order to fit in with everybody else. One day, I don't know when, I cried out, Lord, deliver me from broadway! The show is over! Is this the cry of your heart today? Then read on. This is going to help you.

In order to be set free from broadway, which is nothing more than a performance oriented mentality, first and foremost you must know Him. The moment you received Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior, He delivered you and translated you from the kingdom of darkness into His marvelous light (2 Peter 2:9). This is wonderful news! At the moment you were born again, your received salvations entire package; health, wholeness and wellness in Him.

However, although deliverance is instant, you must be developed. This stage of the Christian walk is also known as the process of sanctification which takes place from the inside out by the power of the Holy Spirit. The mistake many believers make is trying to develop from the outside in through works. They try to make themselves right by doing the right thing; go to church, love, do nice things etc. This becomes a problem when you get bored with church, find out that it is not so easy to love people you don't like and even harder to do nice things when nice things are not done for you.

Jesus said in John 8:31, "If you continue in my word, then you are My disciples indeed." The word "continue" in this verse is used to convey that true disciples are to have ceaseless, continual uninterrupted involvement with Him. The way to develop your walk with the Lord you must train for change. You cannot try to continue because trying involves no commitment. You have to teach and train your soul to trust in the Lord. During this process, the enemy will fight against you and possibly win a few battles until you build up some spiritual muscle.

The pragmatics of development is found in setting spiritual goals. Set a specific time each day for prayer and study of the Word. Then, throughout the day, meditate on that Word and believe God for opportunities to walk out the Word that you have read for the day. Please be mindful that prayer and study will do you no good if you don't do what the Lord has shown you in your time spent with Him (James 1:22-25).

There are no shortcuts to being delivered from Broadway. You must train (act upon what you are learning about Him) for change. Remember on Broadway, it is all about I, me and my. But when the show is over, the lights are gone and the last person has gone home, "I" has to die in order for you to walk in a sonship relationship with the Lord. It's all about Him!

Don't worry about who will or will not like you once the mask is off. You have been created in His likeness and image. He has an incredible plan for you life and He just wants you to live in the light of Him being the reality behind your appearance. Jesus is the truth behind everything that exists. He is your truth and when you have been set free by His truth you shall be free indeed. The show is finally over!

Monday, April 18, 2011

No Exemptions

A.I.D.S (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) is such a deadly disease because it attacks the immune system. It leaves the body defenseless against minor ailments such as a common cold. So, if someone with A.I.D.S. gets a cold, it could turn into pneumonia and lead to death. This is no cure for this malady. It can only be treated, but will still lead to the individual’s death.
Another chronic illness that afflicts the human body that has no cure is diabetes. However, a diabetic can live a healthy lifestyle by taking insulin, maintaining a healthy diet and exercise. Insulin and proper diet are beneficial, but I have seen many who don’t follow these simple instructions. Diabetics who disregard these basic tools for living end up losing limbs or worse yet dying. There are no exemptions.
Sin in the life of a believer is likened unto the two diseases. There is no cure. It can be controlled, BUT if a believer does not put into practice a daily discipline of the word; he or she will suffer the consequences. No one is exempt.
Paul told the Church of Rome in Romans 8:13, “If ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. An Old Testament counterpart to this verse can be found in Moses farewell address to the Israelites in Deuteronomy 30:19.
He told the children of Israel, “I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life that both thou and thy seed may live.”
The essence of these verses lies in our choices. If we make godly choices, we will reap the blessings. If we make fleshy choices, we will reap death. There is no way around this pungent truth. Therefore instead of looking for an exemption for the flesh today, choose life that you and your children may live!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

A Sinner's Love

Luke 6:31-36 in the New Living translation says, "Do to others as you would like them to do to you. 32 “If you love only those who love you, why should you get credit for that? Even sinners love those who love them! 33 And if you do good only to those who do good to you, why should you get credit? Even sinners do that much! 34 And if you lend money only to those who can repay you, why should you get credit? Even sinners will lend to other sinners for a full return. 35 “Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to those who are unthankful and wicked. 36 You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate."

This pericope of scripture starts out with the Golden Rule, "Do to others as you would like them to do to you." It can also be said, "Treat others like you want to be treated." This is translated to mean that if you want people to love you, love them. If you want people to give to you, give to them. If you want others to be kind to you, then be kind to them. If you want people to forgive you, forgive them.

In Matthew 13, Jesus, after teaching seven kingdom parables, asked His disciples, "Do you understand all these things." They responded, "Yes, Lord." Many believers say they understand the Golden Rule, but, are frustrated, disillusioned, and hard to get along with because they are not treating people like they want to be treated. This is indicative of a sinner's love.

A sinner only loves those who love them. Well, that is expected of one who knows nothing about the love of God. The problem comes in when a believer acts like a sinner only loving those who love, do good and are kind to them. This is a sad commentary for the Body of Christ; for this act of a "sinner's love," has given the enemies of God great occasion to blaspheme God (2 Samuel 12:14).

Luke 6:35-36 says, "Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to those who are unthankful and wicked. 36 You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate." This is the command that Jesus gave to those who were listening to Him back then, and He is giving this command to us today. We are given the directive to love like God loves and we are more than able to accomplish this task because the love of God has been shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit that has been given to us (Romans 5:5).

So, don't get caught up in a sinners love; only loving, blessing and giving to those who love, bless and give to you. Love your enemies. Bless those who curse you. Do good to those who hate you and pray for those who despitefully use you and persecute you. In short, love like God loves! He is kind to the unthankful and to the evil. He is kind and merciful to you.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Obedience Is Key To Happiness

Praise the Lord! On this past Sunday, I celebrated my spiritual birthday. I have been saved, satisfied and serving the Lord for 24 years. Glory! As I looked back over my walk with the Lord, I can recall times that I was not happy. I look at believers today and I can see that many are not happy.

There is a revelation of a difference between happiness and joy. Happiness is based upon circumstances. This is not a bad thing. If you get a promotion on your job, you are happy. If you receive unexpected income in the mail, you are happy. If someone does something nice for you, you are happy. If the sun is shining and things are going well, you are happy. Again, this is not a bad thing. However, what do you do when things are not going well?

Joy on the other hand is a fruit of the Spirit. It is an inward contentment that is not based on circumstances. It is the result of the indwelling of the Spirit which is fueled by the grace, goodness and glory of the Lord. Psalms 16:11 says, "You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore." Joy comes from being in the presence of the Lord! Once you have been with Him, you realize that there is nothing too hard for Him because He is more than able to turn any circumstance around!

Now that you see that there is a difference between happiness and joy, I want to show you how you can contribute to your own happiness. Joy is an inside job, but there is one key thing that every believer can do to contribute to his or her own happiness. This key is not some far, out of reach, abstract concept. In fact, all of us have reaped the benefits of it when consistently applied to our lives. The key is obedience.

Obedience is the theme that runs throughout the Bible. In the of Deuteronomy, there are multiple references to obedience. I encourage you to read the entire book and note how many times the word "obey" is mentioned in the New Living Translation. Today, I want to point out just a few verses found in chapters five and six.

Deuteronomy 5:32-33 So Moses told the people, “You must BE CAREFUL TO OBEY all the commands of the Lord your God, following his instructions in every detail. 33 Stay on the path that the Lord your God has commanded you to follow. Then you will live long and prosperous lives in the land you are about to enter and occupy.

Deuteronomy 6:1-3 “These are the commands, decrees, and regulations that the Lord your God commanded me to teach you. YOU MUST OBEY them in the land you are about to enter and occupy, 2 and you and your children and grandchildren must fear the Lord your God as long as you live. IF YOU OBEY ALL his decrees and commands, you will enjoy a long life. 3 Listen closely, Israel, and BE CAREFUL TO OBEY. Then all will go well with you, and you will have many children in the land flowing with milk and honey, just as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, promised you.

Deuteronomy 6:17-18 YOU MUST DILIGENTLY OBEY the commands of the Lord your God—all the laws and decrees he has given you. 18 Do what is right and good in the Lord’s sight, so all will go well with you. Then you will enter and occupy the good land that the Lord swore to give your ancestors.

Note the emphasis in these three verses and the result of obedience. I love how it says if you obey, then all will go well. Doesn't it make you happy when things go well? Now there are many situations and circumstances that are beyond your control. However, think of the times that things were not going well simply because you did not obey.

I trust today's teaching has encouraged your heart. If you are not happy, do a self check and see if there is an area or areas in your life that you have not been obedient to the Lord. Make the mid term corrections and purpose from this day forward to do what is right and good in the Lord's sight so that all will go well with you.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Monday, March 21, 2011

Y - Yield Your Will

Well glory, today I will be sharing with you the final point in this series on O.C.C.U.P.Y. Until He comes. As we are about the Father's business in 2011 in understanding the kingdom of heaven, God is calling us to Y - Yield Your Will.

The word yield means to surrender or submit as to superior power. It also means to give up, give over or give in. The meaning is clear, yet of all of God's creation, mankind struggles to yield. From Adam to current, every human born, except Jesus has failed in one way or another in this area of yielding. However, our will was created to yield. The greatest way we show love and submission to God is to yield our will to His.

Just prior to Jesus arrest and crucifixion, He went to Gethsemane with Peter, James and John to pray. Matthew 26:36-39 says, 'Then cometh Jesus with them unto a place called Gethsemane, and saith unto the disciples, Sit ye here, while I go and pray yonder. 37 And he took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy. 38 Then saith he unto them, My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with me. 39 And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt."

First I want to bring your attention to the place Gethsemane where Jesus went to pray. Gethsemane means oil press. It is indicative of the place where we must all come and have our will pressed out so that the Father's will can be accomplished in our lives. The Little Kittle Theological Dictionary says this about Gethsemane, "Gethsemane implies the possibility of an independent human will that is set aside in voluntary submission to the divine will." We all come to a crossroad in life when we are faced with doing what we want to do over what God wants us to do. That is why daily (and sometimes several times in a day) we must go to Gethsemane to have our will pressed out to make way for the will of the Lord. Only when we submit to the will of the Lord will we be able to see His kingdom purposes fulfilled in and through our lives.

The second thing I want to point out in this verse is what Jesus said in the Garden of Gethsemane. Matthew 26:39 says, "And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt." This is the only place in scripture where you will find Jesus will contrary to the will of the Father. Instead of carrying out His will, He carried out the will of the Father saying, "...nevertheless not as I will."

Yielding will always require you to go a little farther in prayer to press out your will for the will of God. When we go a little farther, a "nevertheless" will rise up because at the heart of "going farther" is an ardent desire to accomplish God's will. Jesus did it, therefore by the power of His Spirit living in us, we too can declare, nevertheless, not as I will.

I trust you have been blessed by this series O.C.C.U.P.Y. Until He Comes. I pray that it challenges you to be about the Father's business. I am convinced that if you would operate, consecrate, contribute, understand, press and yield, you won't have time for anything else. So purpose in your heart from this day forward to be about the Father's business and O.C.C.U.P.Y. until He comes!

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven,

Pastor Sheila

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

P - P.R.E.S.S.

Good morning! This is the day that the Lord has made. I will rejoice and be glad, and so should you! I am excited about today's teaching in the series, O.C.C.U.P.Y. Until He Comes. This is the area where many times believers faint and give up. However, now is not the time to give up! We must put this leg of the teaching into practice. We MUST, P - P.R.E.S.S.

When you think about the word "press," apply this acronym; Put Resolute Energy in Standing Strong. Isn't that powerful? That is what we have to do in the press! You may be caught between a rock and a hard place but you must stand firm in your faith knowing that nothing is too hard for God. P.R.E.S.S.!

The thing that I love about the press is that it is the warfare of occupying, and warfare is good because we win! It is the area where we are faced with opposition while training to be about the Father's business. The enemy is prowling about seeking to devour those who are weak. The Word of God tells us to resist him firm in our faith.

Any time there is resistance, we are faced with a choice to resist or give in. Please note in 1 Peter 5:9 that we are commanded to resist. It is not a suggestion. I learned in our building dedication service that ensconced in a command is the promise of victory. Hallelujah! Therefore, when we are in the press, we must put resolute energy in standing strong because God has already promised the victory! He has already promised to perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you! Therefore, I charge you to press on! Resist the devil! He must flee! God has already given the victory.

Paul said in Philippians 3:14, "I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. That word "press" in the Greek is "dioko." It means to follow or press hard after, to pursue with earnestness and diligence in order to obtain. What this is teaching us is that when we are in the press, or faced with resistance, we must put resolute energy into obtaining what God has promised. No matter what the opposition we must press. God has already promised the victory.

The practicality of pressing is to P.U.S.H. You have heard it before. In the press when we are faced with resistance, we must Pray Until Something Happens. When you have a push in your spirit it weakens the forces of darkness and strengthens your resolve knowing that all of heavens resources are backing you! Are you faced with opposition from every side while operating, consecrating, contributing, understanding and pressing? Are you encountering diverse trials and tribulations in your marriage, ministry, money and muffins (your sweet children)? Then, P.R.E.S.S. AND P.U.S.H.! Put resolute energy in standing strong! Don't give in! Pray until something happens! This is warfare! It is good! We win! Glory to God!

So, if you find yourself between that rock and a hard place today, meditate on these verses I have given you and prepare yourself for the victory. God is not a man that He should lie, nor the son of man that He should repent. That which He has promised to do, He will do. All you have to do is P.R.E.S.S. and P.U.S.H.

I trust you have been encouraged by today's blog. Remember, God loves you and promises to perfect that which concerns you!

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven,

Pastor Sheila

Saturday, March 12, 2011

U - Understand the Kingdom of Heaven

Praise the Lord! This is an exciting time in the Lord! I continue this series on O.C.C.U.P.Y. Until He Comes with our mantra for the year: Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven. On March 3, 2011 I did a teaching on this subject, but today I am going to go a little further in order to emphasize the pragmatics of this topic.

As I have said before, to understand in terms of biblical concepts means to submit to God's point of view on the matter. Prior to salvation, this was a foreign idea because the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God. However, if any man be in Christ He is new and can receive understanding from the Father. Proverbs 2:6 says, "For the Lord giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding." This is good news because now if there is anything that we do not understand about the Kingdom, we can ask the Lord and He will give us the revelation (James 1:5).

With that in mind, what area of your life are lacking understanding in? Is it your marriage, money or ministry? Perhaps it is your children, your attitude or your purpose in life. No matter what it is, you first have to ask yourself, "Self, have I submitted to God's point of view in this area of my life? Do I see it as He sees it? This is the starting point for seeing it as God sees it, for if you don't see it as God sees it, you won't see it as God sees it. Make sense?

Let me put it to you this way. I have been married now to the greatest gift God has given me (aside from salvation and His Spirit) for almost 19 years and we have two wonderful born-again children. One of the declarations that we have spoken over our family is, "The Poole household is blessed, prosperous, happy and to be envied because we fear the Lord and delight greatly in His commands." Hear in lies the success of our family, we fear the Lord and delight greatly in His commands.

The fear of the Lord has caused us to see things as God sees them in our family. My husband is commanded to love me. I am commanded to submit to him. The children are commanded to obey us as their parents. If they do not obey, they are subject to the rod which has taught them obedience through that which the have suffered. Because we, the Poole's fear God, we obey Him by processing everything in our lives through the Word of God. Whatever the Word tells us to do concerning our lives we do it.

I have given you my family life as a point of reference, but through the years, I have trained myself to process every area of my life through the Word of God. The result is the fruit that God has given me an understanding of how to operate in the kingdom of heaven.

The simplicity of this message is this, if you love God then obey. Obedience is the fruit of a mature believer. It displays that you do understand, and from your understanding you produce the fruit of a scribe. You have learned the sacred scriptures, accepted the instructions and are of such character that you give out of your life experience the life you have experienced in Christ.

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven,

Pastor Sheila

Thursday, March 10, 2011

C - Contribute Time, Talent and Treasure to the Building of the Kingdom

Praise the Lord! In this third letter of this teaching I will be encouraging you to C - Contribute Time, Talent and Treasure to the Building of the Kingdom. IAAH!

Contribute simply means to give. This is not a difficult word or concept to understand when looked through the lens of "my life does not belong to me." As a born-again believer we are servants of the Lord. The word "servant" describes one who is bound to do what he is told to do regardless of what he thinks about it. This may seem like a harsh term, but just reflect on Jesus who is our perfect example. On the cross He gave His life in obedience to the Father. He was teaching us how to give regardless of how we think or feel.

God is calling us all to give three things which encompass every area of our lives. First He wants us to give our time to build His kingdom. He has given us time as a wonderful gift to live for Him. The enemy, the master of the flesh, daily works overtime to get us to be lazy and waste time. We don't have time to waste time! Remember the Kingdom! We are on divine assignment and will be held accountable for our time.

Second, He wants us to give our talents. Now this one can be a bit tricky because many times the world has put a high price tag on talents. If you are good at what you do, the world is more than willing to pay you top dollar for it. However, that high price tag will cause one to forget who gave the talent in the first place. I believe that if you are good at something you should be paid for it. However, the greater reward is using that gift in the kingdom which yields a much greater deposit in prospects of eternity.

Last, but not least, and certainly the hardest to give is our treasure. I'm telling you, (not that you don't already know this) when you start talking about giving the almighty dollar to the Lord, everybody, saint and sinner alike get bothered. Nevertheless, in numerous references in the Bible we are commanded to give our money.

Giving of our treasure (money) should be processed through the fact that none of it belongs to us anyway. 1 Chronicles 29:14 says that all things come from God. We should gladly give back what the Lord asks of us and use what He has given for His glory. We should gratefully give the tenth and be honored that He lets us choose how to spend the rest.

So today, think on how Jesus willingly gave all. Ask the Holy Spirit to breathe on your thoughts and give you a revelation of what it means to contribute your time, talent and treasure to the Lord. Once He pulls back the cover in your mind, giving your all to Him will be a piece of cake!

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

C - Consecrate Heart, Soul and Mind to the Lord

Good Morning WDTWS bloggers. Yesterday you read about what it means to operate with a kingdom mindset. Today we will turn our focus to C - Consecrate Heart, Soul and Mind to the Lord.

To consecrate means to separate or dedicate for service. In terms of consecrating the heart, soul and mind to the Lord, it bespeaks of turning over complete ownership of our lives to the Lord for His kingdom purposes.

Romans 12:1-2 is a very familiar passage of scripture. It says, "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

The word "bodies" in this verse is used in context of the OT sacrifices, which represents the totality of one's life and is depicted in a complete change of lifestyle. The key to the change is the mind, which is the control center for one's attitudes, thoughts, feelings and actions. The mind is made new by the Word, prayer and Christian fellowship. When this is our lifestyle, our lives will continue to be renewed.

It is important to understand (see this as God sees it) that the only way to consecrate is to separate from the norm and have our minds renewed by the word of God. We live in a day and age where we are looking for the short cut to success in everything. There is no short cut to a successful Christian walk. It only comes through a renewed mind which the Holy Spirit produces through time spent in prayer and the Word. Then, our renewed mind is strengthened as we maintain fellowship with those who have the same like and precious faith.

We are also instructed in 2 Corinthians 6:17 to come out from among them (the world), and be separate. The Lord also commanded us in this verse to not touch unclean things. In case you are not sure of what the "unclean" things are, read Galatians 5:19-20 for clarity. The reward for this is that God promises to receive us as His sons and daughters.

The Greek word for "separate" in this verse is aphorízō which means to separate from the world for service to God. This is not a difficult concept if we keep in mind that we are on divine assignment. In Joshua 3:5 he commanded the Israelites to, sanctify themselves because God was about to do wonders in their midst. If we ever want to experience the "wonders" of God, we have a personal responsibility to separate from the world for service to God.

This concludes our study for today. I encourage you to not just read these principles, but give yourselves to further study of them. Meditate on this Word so it can be come a part of you and build an anticipation for tomorrows topic: C - Contribute Your Time Talent and Treasure to the Building of the Kingdom. Bless you!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

O - Operate with a Kingdom Mindset

Good morning! Today we will pick up our teaching with the pragmatics of how to "occupy." I will begin with the letter "o."

Practically speaking, in order to occupy you must learn to OPERATE with a kingdom mindset. Operate means to perform, function or behave. A mindset is a way of thinking that is fixed so strongly on a specific outlook that it does not see any other perspective. Taken together, these two words teach that as a born again believer, my behavior must reflect a fixed outlook that only sees things from God's perspective. This mindset is all about God's way of being and doing right (Matthew 6:33).

Kingdom minded people know they can connect with God because they seek to know and be known by Him. Kingdom minded people filter every area of their lives through, "Does what I am doing bring glory to God and accomplish His kingdom purposes for my life?" Kingdom minded people are all about the Father's business. In other words, kingdom minded people have a fixed mindset on accomplishing the assignment for their lives given by the Father.

Jesus had this mindset. In Luke 9:49 He told His parents at the age of 12, “Why did you seek Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father's business?” They had went to celebrate Passover and when the celebration was over they had gone a ways and realized that Jesus was not with them. When they found Him, they were distraught because they could not find Him.

They did not understand Jesus response even though they found Him in the temple teaching and being taught by the Jewish leaders. Mary had been profoundly spoken to by the angel of the child that she would carry. When Jesus was brought to the temple after eight days to be circumcised, Phineas and Anna prophesied over Jesus and His parents heard it. This indicates that perhaps they lost sight of His mission which caused them to worry.

Jesus did not lose sight of His mission. Why? His mind was fixed. He was focused on the Father's assignment for His life. He is the perfect ensample and example of how to operate with a kingdom mindset.

Let us learn from Jesus today. Don't lose sight of your mission. Purpose in your heart from this day forward to live your life in such a way that your mind is set on God's way of being and doing right. The results of this lifestyle will cause you to grow, cause you to gain and cause you show forth His glory in your life! Hallelujah!

Understanding the Kingdom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Monday, March 7, 2011

O.C.C.U.P.Y. Until He Comes

Praise the Lord! God is calling us this year to come up and see things from His point of view. This can only transpire as we grasp an understanding of the kingdom of heaven. This is an on going process, but simply put God is calling us to submit to His was of being and doing right. This is not a difficult task. However, we will need the help of the Holy Spirit. As we allow Him to teach us, we will be able to see it as our Father sees it.

I begin this teaching with an exposition of a message I taught at our church. I believe your life will be blessed and you will be practically equipped to occupy until He comes. Jesus said in Luke 19:13 "And he called his ten servants, and delivered them ten pounds, and said unto them, Occupy till I come." Jesus also taught this parable in Matthew 25:14 which is similar to Luke 19:13. He said, "For the kingdom of heaven is as a man traveling into a far country, who called his own servants, and delivered unto them his goods."

Note that in both of these verses that the servants and the goods both belonged to the nobleman and the man traveling. This is teaching us that we as God's servants, and all that we have belong to God. It should be counted an honor and privilege to receive something from God and take care of it for Him. If we approach our lives with this in mind, along with an attitude of gratitude, it should be easy to take care of what He has given us to care for.

Some may not feel adequate in taking care of God's goods. However, give attention to Luke 19:13 where it says ten servants were given ten pounds. The number ten in the Scriptures is indicative of completeness and wholeness. God has given us the complete set of tools and resources to be about His business until He returns.

The final thing that I would like to call your attention to in this pericope of scripture is the word "occupy." The Greek word for occupy is pragmateúomai. The root word is prágma which means to do or perform. So, occupy means to be doing, to be busy, occupied, to do business, to trade or traffic. All this fancy Greek word is saying is that we are on divine assignment and we have a responsibility to be about the Father's business until He returns.

I trust you have been blessed by today's teaching. Tomorrow I will be sharing how to practically occupy so it can be integrated into your daily lives. Stand firm in your faith and remember as always, IAAH!

Understanding the Kindgom of Heaven in 2011,

Pastor Sheila

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Have You Understood All These Things?

Matthew 13:51-52 Jesus said to them, “Have you understood all these things?” They said to Him, “Yes, Lord.” 52 Then He said to them, “Therefore every scribe instructed concerning the kingdom of heaven is like a householder who brings out of his treasure things new and old.” I like how the Wuest Translation says it: Have you understood all these things? They say to Him, Yes. And He said to them, Because of this, every man learned in the sacred scriptures who has accepted the precepts and instructions with reference to the kingdom of heaven is like a man who is a master of a house, who is of such a character that he dispenses with hearty enjoyment out of his treasure-house, things new as to quality and also things mellowed with age by reason of use.

Do you remember being a kid and your parents saying, "Do you understand me?" This was usually asked when you didn't do something that you were told to do, right? The reason they asked this question is because a certain task or duty was not performed. In essence, what they were asking was, "If you understood me, then why did you not do what I asked you to do?"

Jesus asked His disciples, "Have you understood all these things?" Their response was, yes Lord. I believe that the Lord is asking us today this same question. Therefore let's briefly look at what it means "to understand." The dictionary defines it as to perceive the meaning of a thing. Yet for the purposes of our spiritual growth, we are going to dig a little deeper.

Understand is made up of two words, under and stand. Under means, subject or in submission to. Stand means position or viewpoint. Put together, understand means to be subject or submitted to the position or viewpoint of another.

Jesus was asking His disciples, and He is asking us today, "Have you submitted yourself to my viewpoint on the Kingdom of Heaven?" As theirs was, our response should be, "Yes, Lord." With that response comes a responsibility to a correct corresponding action. When we tell the Lord that we have submitted to things the way that He sees it, then we should glorify Him by submitting to things in our everyday lives as He sees them.

Therefore, this year as we endeavor to understand the Kingdom of heaven, let us show by our works and live this verse. Let's purpose to let our Kingdom character dispense with hearty enjoyment, things old and new to draw people to Him.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

The Tale of Two Seeds

Have you ever wondered why as a believer some seem to receive from God on a regular basis and others don't ever seem to receive from God? This has crossed my mind before on my Christian journey, and today, the Lord reminded me of a familiar truth.

For me it began in St. Louis, when I struggled with being there on a daily basis. We had many challenges that we were up against. Sometimes I believed God, sometimes I didn't. I was unstable in all my ways. Well, is it any wonder? I was living out the tale of two seeds.

Leviticus 19:19 teaches “You must obey all my decrees. “Do not mate two different kinds of animals. DO NOT PLANT IN YOUR FIELD WITH TWO DIFFERENT KINDS OF SEED. Do not wear clothing woven from two different kinds of thread. The Lord very clearly instructed here not to plant two different kinds of seed in your field. In Matthew 13 it shows us that there are four types of soil that the seed was planted. Well, where is soil? In a field. And we understand from this parable that the field is indicative of the heart.

James 1:5-8 (NLT) says, "If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. 6 But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with DIVIDED LOYALTY (or two seeds) is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. 7 Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do." This persons loyalty is divided because of the two seeds sown in their heart. There is a seed of faith and a seed of doubt.

What is the moral of this story? It is simple. Do not plant in the field of your heart seeds of faith and doubt. Faith and doubt cannot be planted in the same field. The two CANNOT grow together because the seed of doubt is like a weed and will choke out the seed of faith. So today, purpose to obey all the decrees of the Lord. Whatever you need of Him, ask in faith expecting to receive the fruit of the faith seed planted in your heart. Trust in God alone, and He shall bring it to pass! Amen.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Solution For The Discharge (Running Issue)

Good Morning! I was so blessed from reading Leviticus 15 this morning, that I had to share my findings! The Word of God is true. He really does give understanding in everything!

In yesterday's blog, I mentioned the difficulty some encounter in understanding Leviticus. Well, I had to dig a little deeper myself today as I found myself reading over Leviticus 15 finding it a bit challenging to grasp its meaning and apply it to my life. But thanks be to God! Through His Holy Spirit He lead me to the truth and gave me understanding. I trust this will help you too.

Leviticus 15:1-3 says, And the LORD spoke unto Moses and to Aaron, saying, 2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When any man hath a running issue out of his flesh, because of his issue he is unclean. 3 And this shall be his uncleanness in his issue: whether his flesh run with his issue, or his flesh be stopped from his issue, it is his uncleanness.

A running issue is described as an active flowing discharge from a person's body ( Lev. 15:2 ) that renders a person unclean, man ( 2 Sam. 3:29 ) or woman ( Lev. 15:19 ).

Jesus spoke of where the source of this running issue come from. In Mark 7:20 He says, And then He added, "It is what comes from inside that defiles you. 21 For from within, out of a person's heart, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, 22 adultery, greed, wickedness, deceit, lustful desires, envy, slander, pride and foolishness. 23 All these vile things come from within; they are what defile you.

Now when you put this in light of what comes out of our bodies (spittle, urine, sweat, excrement) it is unclean. Sickness and disease is contracted if we come in contact with what comes out of our bodies. Why? Because EVERYTHING that comes out of our bodies is unclean. Therefore, everything that comes out of us is corrupt and corrupts everything it touches; natural and spiritual. Make sense?

The only way we can be made whole from our uncleanness is by touching Jesus. This is good news! For those of us in Bible Study last night, Pastor Rob talked about the woman with the issue of blood. She was unclean, but when she touched Jesus, she was made whole and brought into a relationship with Him.

So hear what the Spirit of the Lord is saying to you in Leviticus 15. Defilement caused by discharge comes from within. In other words, sin originates from the heart, but the blood of Jesus is the solution to the sin in our hearts.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

What Does It All Mean?

Currently at our church, many of us are reading through the One Year Bible. This month and into March our devotion finds us in the book of Leviticus. Oh boy! Here we go! Some view it as a challenge. Some just read it to get through it and some just skip right over it to the New Testament reading to find more relevance to their every day living.

Today, I want to bring some clarity to the rituals and sacrifices. Prayerfully you will see how it applies to your life and answer some questions, mainly, "What does it all mean?"

Leviticus may be difficult to grasp at first glance. However, if one can understand the principle behind all the washings, rituals and offerings, it's relevance to our daily lives is clear.

The scriptures in Leviticus are dealing with sin issues. They teach many things.
-Sin affects the individual and spreads if not dealt with.
-As a believer, the blood of Jesus covers our sin.
-Nevertheless, because we live in a fallen world, we as believers are still subject to sin.
-Therefore it is necessary to daily check to see if there are sin issues to be dealt with.
-Sin must be dealt with immediately and drastically. It must be cut out, cut off and disposed of.

So if I look at this from a kingdom perspective, I see clearly that it is not about the sacrifices. It is all about me remaining right with the Lord so that I may remain in relationship with Him. God loves me and wants a relationship with me.
We serve a holy God. In order to remain in fellowship with Him, we too must be holy.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Sharing is Caring

When a meal is prepared and there is more food than people to eat it, there will be food left over. The problem with leftovers is that many times it spoils because it is not eaten. When we receive the meal of the Word of God, it is intended for daily use and sharing. It is not intended to be left over. Therefore today as you partake of this wonderful meal that the Lord has prepared for you, don't save the leftovers. Share this Word with someone who is in need of a good spiritual meal. Always remember, sharing is caring.

Matthew 13:52 (Wuest) And He said to them, Because of this, every man learned in the sacred scriptures who has accepted the precepts and instructions with reference to the kingdom of heaven is like a man who is a master of a house, who is of such a character that he dispenses with hearty enjoyment out of his treasure-house, things new as to quality and also things mellowed with age by reason of use.

Short but helpful today. Purpose in your heart to allow the Word of God that you daily receive to become a part of your treasure that you share with others.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Guaranteed Success

We live in a day and time where nothing seems to be guaranteed. Marriages are failing, people are losing homes and jobs, etc. In fact I remember several years ago when someone said to me that I had no guarantee that my husband would not cheat on me. I was taken aback by the comment until the Lord spoke to me from His Word.

Joshua 1:8 says, "This book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success." James 1:25 says, "But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does." These verses promise good success and blessings for meditating on and doing the Word.

I have experienced good success in my life namely in my marriage and family life. I can boldly and confidently say that I am guaranteed fidelity in my marriage because both my husband and I daily spend time in the Word and are careful to do all that is written in it. We have raised our children according to the Word of God and they too are blessed. We have made our way prosperous as we have been obedient to the Word of God.

So what are you faced with today that seems to be unsuccessful? Find out what the Word of God has to say about your situation and put Joshua 1:8 to work in your life. God promises that if you obey His Word, you too will experience good success!

In Him,

Pastor Sheila

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Learn To Take A Hit Pt. 2

Praise the Lord! I thought about yesterday's blog topic, and as I was reflecting on it, the Lord prompted me to share HOW to take a hit. In this life, offenses are inevitable. however, the Bible does teach us what to do in the event rhat we are hurt.

It's safe to say that many times the one who does the hurting is considered an enemy. That may sound harsh, but when offended, the offender is treated as the enemy. What does the Word say? Bow does the Lord istruct believers to treat the enemy (offender)?

Matthew 5:43-44 sums it all up for us: "Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbor, and hate thine enemy. 44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you." In other words, when you are offended, the way you learn to take the hit is to 1. Love the one who has offended you, 2, Bless the one who has cursed you, 3. Do good to the one that hates you, and 4. pray for the one who despitefully usess and persecutes you.

This may be easier said than done, but in order to walk in God's kingdom way we must choose the more excellent way of love. Love blesses, does good to and prays for the one who has caused an offense. In this way the Lord is glorified and the devil is terrified because you, by an act of your will choose to walk in love and forgiveness. Glory!

So, the next time you are offended, choose to walk in God's kingdom way of love. When you do this it is an outward display of an inward change that shows by the grace of God, you are more than able to take a hit.

Be Blessed,

Pastor Sheila