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

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Learn To Take A Hit

Luke 17:1 says that it is impossible that offenses should come. Jesus is teaching us that as long as we live in this life, Christian and all, we will offend and be offended. Unfortunately, the nature of offense is that it typically hurts the one that is offended. Many times this results in broken families, friendships and fellowship with the Lord.

It is important to remember that we must learn to take a hit. In sports, many athletes play with bumps, bruises and even broken bones for the sake of the game. Christians however, tend to sit soak and sour when hurt or offended. I remember being deeply hurt when I first got saved. It caused me to leave the church that I was attending and relocate back to my home town, yet, I DID NOT leave God. From there, my life consisted of several hurts and disappointments at the hands of other believers, but I never left God.

As I was reflecting on this, I saw how God used these experiences to strengthen me and develop in me a heart that forgives. Religious people have a hard time forgiving because they never learned the value of relationship; especially relationship without the Lord Jesus Christ.

Keep in this in mind the next time someone hurts you. Could it be that God allowed that to happen to build character in you? Don't be so quick to pass judgement on the one who hurt you. Talk to the Lord about it and let Him heal your heart, thus creating in you a heart that forgives. You will never learn to take a hit until you take a hit. So, trust God through the situation and know that He is working it out for your good.

It's All About Him,

Pastor Sheila