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JMHO

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Mark tells a story about Jesus healing a boy that was possessed by a deaf and dumb demon. 

The demon had controlled this boy since he was a small child and would just toss him around like a rag doll, throwing him into fire and water and probably other injuries to his body.    All of this on top of disabling his hearing and speech.

I can't even imagine how that boy felt, entrapped in his own body.

His parents had to be at their wits end.   They had  watched their son grow from a child to a young boy to possibly a man who needed constant attention and care.

They had been living in despair of hope for their child.  Their belief was that it would always be this way.

The demon spirit not only controlled their son, it controlled the parents life and faith

Luke

Luke Chapter 1
Luke wanted us to have perfect understanding. He received all his information from eyewitnesses to Jesus.

He tells us the story of Zachariah and Elizabeth, the parents of John the Baptist.

Elizabeth had been barren all her life. She had prayed and prayed for a child, but she was an older woman now.
How long had it been since she and Zacharias had prayed for a child of their own? How long since they had given up on that happening, believing that it was not ever going to be?
When the angel Gabriel told Zacharias what was going to happen, Zacharias doubted him... and with good reason.
Like Abraham and Sarah, they were both older, they were past having children and in their hearts believed that God did not and never would answer their prayer.
They gave up on it and somehow got past it, yet continued to serve the Lord.
Gabriel also appeared to Mary.
Gabriel told Mary "The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also that…

Don't Settle For The Norm

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"Have you ever experienced the Joy of the Lord?" I asked my friend. 

We were in the middle of a very open and honest conversation about lack of happiness. 

She said "I know I have at times, but not in a long while."

David prayed "Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me by Your generous Spirit. Then I will teach transgressors Your ways, and sinners shall be converted to you."(Psalm 51: 12-13 NKJV)

A long time ago, I prayed this prayer also.   I truly didn't even know what I was asking for. 

I just knew that something had to give.

Seeking happiness is fine.

Wanting life to be a certain way so that everything will go the way you think it should is normal.

Wanting to be happy is 100% a human characteristic.

But let's face it.   Life is anything but normal.   It doesn't always go "our way".

Life is hard and wacky and intrusive and miserable and troublesome,  with a few rays of sunshine and fair weather thrown in, which …

Decision Making

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Years ago I made a decision.... or two.

I decided to start being thankful.   To count my blessings even when things didn't look so great.

Because there are always blessings to count.

I decided to start being happy for others when God blessed them in ways that I wished He would bless me.

Because if He can do that for them, He can do that and more for me.

I decided to start speaking blessings over my family and others.

I decided to start believing that "God, who gives life to the dead and calls those things which do not exist as though they did;"  (Romans 4: 17 NKJV).

I decided to think and speak about things or people as though they are what and who God says they are.

We believe a lot of things.

Things about others.

Things about ourselves.

When we start speaking and acting on those beliefs, it can cause problems and conflict,  or it can create an atmosphere where the miraculous can happen.

If we speak and act negatively about ourselves or others, then our mindset and our self image a…

He Promised

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Rest in the LORD.

Identity in Christ.

Child of God.

Heir.

New creation in Christ


Just some random thoughts.   

If we are children of God born anew through Jesus.   If our identity is:  His child, His heir, His creation, Believer, Saved by the blood, Transformed by the renewing of our minds.

If we believe He is our Father, Savior, Redeemer, Friend, Provider, Creator, Healer, Adviser, and the source of all Love and Compassion.

Then why?

Why have doubts about our future?  Why worry about what's going on around us?

Someone recently commented to me:  "God always seems to take care of you.   He always seems to answer your prayers."

I replied "Why wouldn't He?   He promised He would."

I mean...  please don't think that  I don't have my fair share of troubles in this world.   I have lost loved ones, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, friends, and lately my father.   I have been betrayed and abandoned by people.  I have been disappointed by people that I love dearly.  I …

No Nose Dive Allowed

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Feeling down in the dumps?   Having a bad day?

It's okay.

Every one does.

Christians, however, should have the ability to shake it off, kick it to the curb and get on with the business of living a joy filled life.

Joy!

The joy of the Lord is our strength.

And that is no small thing.

In the middle of turmoil, grief, relationship issues, financial problems.

In the middle of life.

It is our job and our calling to exhibit joy in all of these things.

It is not our job to moan and groan about life and all that entails.   It is not our purpose to despair due to circumstance.

It is the core value of our entire belief.

That God can and does fill us with joy.

"Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."   (Hebrews 12:2   NASB)

He endured that because He saw joy in the outcome.

We can take joy in all circumstances because we know that G…

All Ya Got!

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And He said to them, “Because of the littleness of your faith; for truly I say to you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you.

But this kind does not go out except by prayer and fasting.” (Matthew 17: 20-21 NASB)

You can not experience the fullness of your relationship with God if you are holding out on Him.  

He has so much to offer to His children.

He holds nothing back from us.   He gave it all and He wants us to live in the complete and total freedom that being related to Him bestows on us.

But we hold onto our 'stuff' like we can deal with it on our own. 

Like He can't handle it.

Like He doesn't know more about it than we do.

Like He just wouldn't understand.

Like we don't trust Him with it.

Or like it is too precious to trust to anyone, even Him. 

Oops!

There it is.

A lack of faith.

Where is a mustard seed when you need one?  

He tells us to pray an…