Genuine Christians

I was reading I Timothy Chapter 1 this morning and in verse 7 and 8 of the NKJV it says, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love.  The word genuineness stood out to me.  I looked this word up in the dictionary and it means sincere or authentic.  As I prayed over this verse it same up in my spirit that God is looking for genuine Christians.  He is not looking for Christians who are following the latest fad of what is trendy and popular.  He is looking for sincere and authentic Christians. Christians who follow him when no one is looking.

The world around us has programmed us as a society that we must fit in with everyone else.  We judge success by how popular someone is rather than how authentic they are.  If you have a successful ministry in the eyes of man it is based on how many people attend your church, how many likes you get on Facebook, or how many people follow you on Instagram or Twitter.  We compare our ministries to other people’s ministries and then call ours a failure because it is not likes theirs, what is authentic about that?  You can’t be authentic or genuine trying to be like other Christians.  We were called to be Christ like not like other Christians.  Every Christian has a ministry, a way of spreading the gospel to others, that is uniquely yours and given to you by God himself.  We need to be willing to do that ministry to the best of our ability and not try to change it.  Give the reigns over to God and let him lead your ministry and follow him.

You may say you don’t have a ministry but the way you live your day to day life is a ministry.  People are watching you to see if they see God in you.  They are watching to see if you are sincere and truly changed or if you are just another person to jump on the Christian train and will jump back off in a month or two when things get tough.  These people do more damage than good, because there was nothing genuine in them.  There are people who die and go to Hell everyday because of fake people who aren’t genuine in their walk with God.  People are searching for something real, so if you are not going to walk the walk, please don’t talk the talk.

Let’s start being genuine Christians today.  Christians who are real and aren’t copying someone else but walking in their own journey with Jesus Christ.  We all make up the body of Christ but have different purposes.  God has given you a purpose don’t throw it away by copying someone else’s, be genuine and authentically you.  God didn’t manufacture duplicates but created each of us uniquely different, why?  Because each of our purposes and ministries is uniquely different but all for the glory of God.  The world tries to tell us to be copycats not the Bible.

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Stir Up Your Gift

In II Timothy chapter 1 Paul is talking to Timothy and in verse 6 he tells him to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of my hands.  As I continued to read this chapter my mind kept going back to verse 6.  As I prayed over this verse a question came to me, how many Christians are scared to stir up the gift that God has given them?  Am I personally afraid to truly stir up my gift in my own life?  Why are we afraid to do this?  What would it take for us to stir up our gifts? What type of impact would this have on the world around us?

I think the majority of Christians are scared to stir up their gift from God.  This is evident in the world around us. There is not a strong presence of Christians in the world today. Some will live their entire lives on this earth and never even know what their gift was, because they weren’t open to receiving it. Some of us may dabble in our gift but the minute it pushes us outside our comfort zone, we pull back or stop.  We put limits and reigns on our gifts out of fear.  Fear of what others may think or say about us or just fear of the unknown.  Our minds cannot even comprehend where God wants to take us in our gift or calling.  We can only serve Him as big as we believe.

So, what would it take for us to stir up our gifts?  First, you have to know your gift. You have to let God show you what your true gift is, you don’t get to choose your gift.  I believe your gift is given to you based on what God’s purpose for your life is. You can’t stir up a gift that is not yours.  You have to quit worrying about what everyone else’s gift is and if their gift is greater than yours in your eyes, and walk in your gift.  You need to keep your eyes on God and stay focused on your purpose.  He has a plan for you and you were created with purpose but you have to be willing to accept your purpose to grow in your gift.  Spend time in prayer and in his Word and he will make this known to you.  Then, you have to be willing to follow him no matter how scared or alone you may feel.  You may have to leave other people behind to complete your journey, but God will bring new people in your life along that journey.  People who will pray with you and for you, that will encourage you, and lift you up to God when you are under attack.  The unknown is scary but God will be there, you just have to be willing to go.

II Timothy 1:7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. If we just applied to verse to our day to day life and walk in our gifts, what a mighty army we would be for Christ.  There would be no stopping a church or Christian, on this earth, that truly believed and lived this verse.  God is waiting for each us of to realize this.  Pray for strength and courage today to accept your gift and purpose from God today.  Pray that we, as Christians, begin to stand in his power and show the world his love.  Let’s stop looking weak and unsure of ourselves, when we serve a mighty living God. There is no other like him.  He is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end.  We need to stop acting as though we serve and ordinary God and realize we serve the only God and what a mighty and powerful God he is!

Thank you for reading and hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!

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Action Required

I was reading a familiar verse this morning in Matthew 7:7, Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. I begin to think are we asking or seeking anything from God, when it comes to our relationship with him? Are we even knocking for it to open for us or are we just standing there in contentment?
Do we ask God for strength to follow him so he can take us farther than we have ever been in him? Do we ask him for courage to fight the things that come against us and that prevent us from moving forward in our relationship with him? Do we ask him to fill us with love and compassion for our fellow man, so we can love others the way the bible instructs us to? Do we ask God to break down those walls and chains that hold us back in our faith, like fear and anxiety?

Do we seek God in our day to day life?  Do we look for ways to serve God on a daily basis? Do we seek his wisdom and power to defeat our flesh? Do we spend time in his Word, because we want a deeper understanding and a more powerful relationship with our Lord and Savior?  Do we spend time in prayer seeking his guidance?

Do we knock on the doors in our life for God to open them?  Do we knock or bang on the walls we have allowed Satan to put up in out lives for God to destroy them? Sometimes I think we are afraid to knock fearing the unknown.  We become content behind the doors and inside the walls because we don’t have to face what is on the other side.  God can open a door that has been nailed shut by you and by Satan with ease, but you have to be willing to walk through it.

The thing that stood out to me in this verse is that each of these words Ask, Seek, Knock all require action on your part.  God is tired of lazy Christians.  Christians who are wanting to be spoon fed the Word because they are too lazy to read it for themselves.  Christians who want everyone else to pray and seek God for them.  Christians who want to tell everyone their problems but God.  They are looking for pity not resolution.

God is looking for Christians that are ready to take action for his name sake. He is looking for Christians that have a hunger for him and his Word.  He is looking for Christians who are ready to stand up against Satan and the things of this world.  Christians who are willing to be an outcast for His name sake.  Christians who will serve Him, no matter the cost.  God is on the move and we need to be willing to move with him.  Quit waiting on everybody else to do something and do it yourself.  Ask God what he wants you to do on this earth to further his Kingdom,  seek him in everything you do, and knock on the doors that are preventing you from moving forward.  Don’t keep God waiting, time is running out.

Thank you for reading and I hope you have a Great day in Jesus Christ!!

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Giving Your All

As I was reading II Corinthians 9:7 this morning, So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.  I know this is quoted a lot regarding paying tithes or giving of money, and I agree that we should do these things cheerfully. I believe that what you spend your money on shows what is important to you.  I believe that is why God wants us to be cheerful when doing this because only then are we giving from the heart. However, money was not what God laid on my heart with this scripture this morning.

I believe our time is also valuable to God and that we should give it cheerfully.  A lot of times people will give money before they will donate their time.  We, as a society, value money so much that we often overlook people who donate their time and only give recognition to the people who make monetary donations.  The person who donated their time may have given all they had.  They gave the one thing they can never get back, their time on this earth.  Maybe they spent time cleaning or taking care of projects at their church to ensure everything is clean for you to arrive on Sunday morning, maybe they spent time working in their own ministry to help others that are in need and to share Jesus with them, or maybe they spent time in prayer praying for you and I to defeat whatever may come against us this week.  I believe these things are just as important to God if they are done earnestly and cheerfully.  God wants us to be eager and excited about serving him whether we are giving money or time.

God is looking for the person who is willing to give their all to him.  Just like the widow in Luke chapter 21. Her gift in man’s eyes was much less than the gifts the rich were giving, but Jesus said in verse 3and 4, Truly I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all; for all these out of their abundance have put in offerings for God, but she out of her poverty put in all the livelihood that she had. Let’s start giving Jesus our all today.  Let’s quit putting monetary value on everything and start giving from our heart, all that we have.  Stop looking at what others are doing or giving and start focusing on what you can do and what you can give.  Each of us have a purpose and God wants us to fulfill that purpose.  It doesn’t matter how big or small you think your purpose is, God just wants you to give it your all.  Stop comparing your purpose or your gifts to someone else’s purpose or gifts and just give it your all.  God is looking for total surrender and commitment from us to love and serve him only.

Thank you for reading and I hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!

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Spiritual Backsliding

I was reading in 1 Timothy chapter 4: 1-2 this morning which reads, Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron. I began to think how do we depart from the faith?  Is this a conscious choice or does this happen little by little?  I started praying and asking for insight on this because I know people who were once on fire for God and are now so cold in their spirit.  They flee at the mention of God’s name in a conversation.

While for some the decision to walk away from God was a conscious choice, but for the majority I believe it subtle changes in their day to day life that cause this.  I have often read that if Satan can’t make you sin, he will make you busy.  I believe this is where it starts for most people.  They become so busy with work, children, taking care of their homes, and other social obligations that they begin to spend less time in the Word.  Spending less time in the Word begins to affect their prayer life.  They aren’t praying for guidance or a deeper understanding of God’s Word anymore.  They are no longer growing spiritually. The excitement they once had to serve Jesus in their church, community, or around the world is gone.  Their prayers have become quick memorized prayers they recite to keep from feeling guilty for not praying.  They begin to miss church services.  One or two become three or four missed services and before they know it weeks have now become months.  Before long not attending church is the new norm.

Now that they are not in the Word, prayer, or attending church they begin to justify sin.  They let the deceiving spirits and doctrines convince them that certain sins are not sins anymore.  They begin to slowly partake of things of the flesh until there is no longer any resemblance of Christ in their life.  Some will say they are a Christian but there is no evidence or fruit of that in their lives and others will deny ever knowing him,  They can still quote a few scriptures but usually on the good ones about how much Jesus loves us.  They tend to forget the ones that would convict them of their actions.  The good news is no matter how far they have walked away from Jesus, all they have to do is cry out to him.  The minute they cry out to him, he is there with open arms, ready to forgive them.

As Christians we have to make a conscious choice everyday to follow and serve Jesus.  We have to make spending time in God’s Word and in prayer a top priority in our life. Let’s stop being hot or cold Christians depending on what day of the week it is.  Can you imagine where you would be today in your walk with Jesus if you remained as on fire for Jesus today as you were the day you were saved?

We need to pray daily for strength and perseverance to continue our walk with Jesus.  We  need to pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ and encourage them on their walk with Jesus.  Let’s stop putting each other down for mistakes made and start lifting each other up in prayer.  We should support each other with love and compassion.  We should build each other up with encouragement to follow Jesus. The world needs more Christians not more backsliders.  So today lift up your brothers and sisters in Christ and pray earnestly for them to remain steadfast and strong.

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!

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Be an Inspiration

I had written something totally different for this morning when God gave me this and I had to post it.

As Christians sometimes we can be so quick to criticize or speak negatively about someone.  We want to point out their flaws or sins to make ourselves feel more spiritual.  Where is the love and compassion for people in that?  God is love and his Word says  he who does not love does not know God.

We should be an inspiration to people by showing them the love and compassion that Jesus Christ has showed each of us.  We should inspire people not just with our words but with our actions.  They should see Jesus in us without us having to say a word.  One of my greatest inspirations when I was first saved was someone I had never spoken to in my church, but watched every Sunday.  It was a young man that attended every service and sat on the front row of the church.  It was his dedication and commitment that got my attention. He wasn’t ashamed to sit on the front row or to praise God during praise and worship.  He inspired me because I felt so unsure of everything when I first got saved.  I was dealing with guilt of past sins because even though Jesus had forgiven me, I had not forgiven myself.  God was convicting me of things that I didn’t even realize at that time were sins, so I was struggling.  I didn’t need anyone telling me what I was doing wrong or criticizing me at that point I needed to see confident Christians.  Christians who knew who they were in Jesus and weren’t ashamed to show it.  I needed to see in them where I wanted to be in Jesus.  This young man showed this without saying a word.  His actions spoke louder than anything he could have ever said.

People need to see each and everyone of us walking in Jesus.  They need to see our dedication and commitment to Jesus in our actions and not just our words.  We need to stop talking the talk and start walking the walk.  We need to come together as Christians and support each other and pray for each other.  It shouldn’t matter what church we go to or what denomination we are, because we all serve one God.  We should all be trying to witness to the lost, help those in need, and pray for our fellow Christians.

People are watching you to see if you are truly different when you don’t even know it.  They are watching you at work, church, and anywhere else you go.  Be an inspiration to them, make them want to know the Jesus you serve.  Be the light in their darkness.  You don’t know what someone is going through or what your actions could be doing for them.

Thank you for reading and have a great day in Jesus Christ!

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Spiritual Detox

I have been seeing all these ads and recipes for water to detox your body.  The idea is if you add certain fruits, herbs, or ginger root to your water every day it will cleanse your body of impurities.   It is like an internal cleanse and by doing this you should feel healthier and possibly lose some weight.  I began to think about this in a spiritual sense and thought what if Christians did a spiritual detox daily?  Would this make us healthier Christians ready to be about our Father’s business?  Would we lose the weight of sin in our life caused from bitterness, anger, hatred, and jealousy that we keep tucked away in our hearts? What would make up a spiritual detox recipe?

In place of water is the blood of Jesus Christ.  Just like the human body cannot live without water, a Christian would not exist if not for the blood that Jesus Christ willingly shed for us.  So our first ingredient is the Blood of Jesus Christ.  Like water this blood cleanses us, refreshes and hydrates us spiritually.  Like water it doesn’t need anything added to it to do it’s job in our spiritual body, but what ingredients could we add to detox us spiritually?  In place of the physical fruit we add to water, we would add the fruits of the Spirit. We would add love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, and faithfulness.  Ephesians 5:9 says, for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth. For the herbs that add color, flavor, and life to the drink we add the Holy Ghost.  If you have ever seen someone filled with the Holy Ghost you know there is no greater sign of life or flavor than that moment when they are flowing in the Spirit.  Instead of ginger root we would add the root of righteousness.  Remember the root supports the branches that bear the fruit. Psalms 89:14 says, Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne; Mercy and truth go before your face. Then, you blend this all together with the gifts of the Spirit and your works by faith. What a daily drink that would be!!

As Christians we neglect our spiritual bodies and then wonder why we are not on fire for God like we used to be.  We feed ourselves the junk of the world and then wonder why God is not moving in our lives or we starve ourselves spiritually because we might do something in the Spirit that would embarrass us or cause people to look at us.   The problem is the same with our physical and spiritual bodies and that is we are more worried about our outer appearance than our inner core health.  We worry more about what our neighbors, friends, and family think about us than we do what God thinks about us.

I believe it is time for Christians to start doing a spiritual detox each day.  To wash and cleanse us of all the things that are not of God.  To shed the pounds of baggage that the world and Satan have added to us.  To hydrate and nourish us spiritually for the journey ahead.  To get us healthy and in shape to finish the race of life in victory for Jesus.  So on the day we stand before him that he might say job well done, my child and welcome home!!

Thank you for reading and have a great day in Jesus Christ!!

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Spiritual Growth

As Christians we say we want spiritual growth, but do we really?  This may sound like a crazy question and most will say of course I want to grow spiritually.  I have prayed for this myself and I have written about how this year I am wanting to take my relationship with God to the next level.  I want to grow in my knowledge, wisdom, and faith. What I did not take into consideration was to grow in these areas that I would have to go through some things that would be challenging.

Over the past six weeks I have had to deal with sickness, death, and ridicule.  While all of this was going on I was experiencing a real dryness in my spirit.  It didn’t seem to matter how much I read my Bible or prayed I couldn’t feel God the way I normally do.  I couldn’t write because I didn’t feel like I was hearing God.  I was praying and asking why am I going through this?  Why did you bring me this far to leave me?  We had a night of Prayer and Praise at my church last night and while everyone was praying for different things, I was praying for a breakthrough.  I woke up this morning with my breakthrough and my cup is overflowing this morning.

I was reading this morning in Romans 12:12, rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer.  This verse was my breakthrough because in order to be patient in tribulation and continue steadfastly in prayer you have to go through some things.  I am not saying that God caused the sickness or death, but I believe the dryness and loneliness I was feeling during this time was my test.  I believe we have to go through difficult times to grow.  I believe had I not continued to pray and read the Word then I would have failed this test and would have been stuck where I was in my faith.  I would not have been ready for the next step in my relationship with God.  I pray today for strength to continue to grow in my knowledge, wisdom, and faith in my Lord and Savior.

If you are going through something today in your relationship with God, please don’t give up.  He is never going to leave you or forsake you.  Cling to Him and His Word and know that your breakthrough is coming.

Thank you for reading and have a great day in Jesus Christ!

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A Prayer Centered Life

The phrase a prayer centered life kept coming up in my spirit this morning. I wasn’t sure what God was going to show me with this but knew this was going to be something for me. As I have mentioned in previous post, this year I am praying and asking God to reveal areas in my life that are keeping me from moving forward or moving to the next level in my relationship with God. I immediately became defensive thinking God I pray every day and multiple times a day, so how can I not have a prayer centered life. As I sat there quietly and meditated on this phrase, I began to see a picture of what this looks like. Once again God was right, and my life was not as prayer centered as I had thought.

Christians that have a prayer centered life are the Christians when we are sick or in need that we want to pray for us. You can feel the power in their prayer and their closeness to God shines through when they pray. They may appear quite and reserved but something happens when they pray. In times of crisis these Christians appear very calm and are not easily shaken. Their life is not perfect, and they go through the same trials that we all do, but they don’t appear to be anxious or worried in the least. They are happy and joyous people and there is a peacefulness that flows from them. Just being in their presence can ease your tensions without them ever saying a word. Their faith is strong because of their personal relationship with God. They know that all things work together for their good. They may not understand why things work out the way they do sometimes, but they know God is in control and that his thoughts are higher than ours. There is a peace about them because they don’t try to manipulate or change things they have given to God. They give it to God and forget it.

This person doesn’t just pray when they have a spare moment, but they have dedicated prayer time each day. Prayer and their time with God is a top priority every day to them. They look forward to their one on one time with God and are excited about what he might reveal to them each day. They meditate on his Word and open their minds to allow him full access. They talk to God like he is a true friend and they share all aspects of their life with him. They wait and allow God time to speak to them. They realize it is not a one-sided conversation and they listen for God to speak. It hit me in that moment this is the area that I am failing in. I don’t spend time listening and waiting for God to answer. I get in such a hurry that I am missing his responses to my prayers. I make it a one-sided conversation the majority of the time.

I am going to start today giving God time to answer me. I am going to share my prayer time with God and not make it a one-sided conversation.

Thank you for reading and have a great day in Jesus Christ!!
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When We Fail God

As Christians we all make mistakes or bad choices from time to time. The minute we sin the Holy Spirit convicts us immediately. We begin to feel guilt and sadness from this because we know we failed God. We ask God to forgive us and because of His grace and mercy, He does. I believe it is how we handle these failures that make or break our walk with God. Typically, we fall into 3 categories when it comes to sin in our Christian life.

  1. We Wallow
  2. We Quit
  3. We Persevere

Christians that wallow tend to try and justify their sin. They say, “It’s not really that bad, so and so does worse things than me.” They will also say things like “the bible doesn’t specifically say I can’t do this.” They are very defensive about this sin because they are not ready to give it up. They don’t want to pray or fast for deliverance from this sin, so they become stuck in their walk with Jesus. They want to lay there and wallow in it.

Christians who quit are looking for the easy way out. They don’t really commit to anything and typically dip out on things when it gets too hard. They tend to think being a Christian means everything in their life will be easy. They will come to a dead stop in their walk with Jesus just to keep from dealing with their sins. They focus on the parts of the Bible that they like and avoid the rest.

Christians who persevere are the ones who put God above everyone including themselves. Their walk with Jesus is so important to them that when they fail Him, they actually mourn over the sin that remains in them. They pray and fast for deliverance no matter how big or small it is, as they know sin is sin in the eyes of God. They have true remorse and repent wholeheartedly to God. They want to continue to move forward in their walk with God and they are not willing to let anything stop them. They don’t dwell on their sin, once God has forgiven them they move on. They pray for strength and meditate on his Word so when the next test comes along, they can pass it. They want to glorify God not bring him shame or disappointment.

If we are honest with ourselves, I think we are made up of all three from time to time. There may be things, habits, or thoughts that we wallow in because we are not ready to give them up. We feel that nudge from the Holy Spirit, but we ignore it because we enjoy it. We may have convinced ourselves for the moment that it is not wrong, and we are in denial. The problem is this sin you are wallowing in is keeping you from moving forward in God. Sometimes it is hard to be a Christian and maybe you want to take the easy way out, but you will only regret it. Sometimes we have to look at the ugliness inside of us and deal with it. It is not fun or enjoyable, but it is the only way to get rid of it. Nowhere in the Bible does it say our journey would be easy, it just says He would be with us and take care of us. To persevere in our walk with God should be our goal. This takes discipline, commitment, and dedication on a daily basis to achieve. I believe we go through cycles of perseverance and then we hit a road block that causes us to wallow or quit for a moment.

Imagine where we would be in Christ today if we just persevered and didn’t let things hold us up. I pray today for more perseverance in my walk with God. I pray for the strength to move forward and not to wallow or quit in any area of my life.

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a great day in Jesus Christ!!
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