Christian, devotion

In the Wilderness with God

What do we do when God has delivered us from “Egypt” and we are now in the wilderness?  That trying time when we are separated from the things that used to enslave us and forced to have faith in the one true God. We do this because God is the only one who will get us through the wilderness. In the book of Deuteronomy God makes it very clear what we as His people should do in situations like this. Let’s first see what God said.

Besides loving God with all our being, Moses made it very clear not to put God to the test. “Do not put the Lord your God to the test as you did in Massah.” Deuteronomy 6:16   Moses was referring to the time when the Israelites had no water in the wilderness and started complaining. “But the people were thirsty for water there, and they grumbled against Moses. They said, “Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to make us and our children and livestock die of thirst? Then Moses cried out to the Lord, “What am I to do with these people? They are almost ready to stone me.” -Exodus 17:3-4

God had been faithful to provide for their every need, and had done miraculous things to deliver them from their slavery in Egypt. God had given them absolutely no reason to doubt. In Exodus He proceeded to tell Moses to strike a rock and from there the water would come. After all this happened Moses called the place Massah. “And he called the place Massah and Meribah because the Israelites quarreled and because they tested the Lord saying, “Is the Lord among us or not?”-Exodus 17:7

Not only have the Israelites been guilty of testing God, but many Christians today test God and do not realize they are doing it.  This happens when we start to lose faith despite all that God has done for us.  We start to think God Himself is setting us up for failure and simply does not care.  Have you ever felt this way?  I’m guilty! Doubting God and losing faith leads us into the sin of testing God.  Testing God is really a bad decision on our part.  Here is why.

In the first chapter of Deuteronomy, the Israelites had made it close to the promise land, yet there was one obstacle that stood in their way.  Their lack of faith in God.  Though the land was currently taken over by the Amorites, God told the Israelites to take possession of the land.  “See, the Lord your God has given you the land.  Go up and take possession of it as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, told you.  Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” -Deuteronomy 1:21  After the Israelites had sent the spies to scope the place out, here was how they responded according to Moses,  “But you were unwilling to go up; you rebelled against the command of the Lord your God.  You grumbled in your tents and said, “The Lord hates us; so He brought us out of Egypt to deliver us into the hands of the Amorites to destroy us.  Where can we go?  Our brothers have made our hearts melt in fear.  They say, “The people are stronger and taller than we are; the cities are large, with walls up to the sky.  We even saw the Anakites there.”-Deuteronomy 1:26-28  Moses then proceeded to tell them this beautiful verse of why they should not be afraid.

“Then I said to you,”Do not be afraid; do not be afraid of them.  The Lord your God, who is going before you, will fight for you, as He did for you in Egypt, before your very eyes, and in the wilderness.  There you saw how the Lord your God carried you, as a Father carries His son, all the way you went until you reached this place.”-Deuteronomy 1:29-31

I love the word of God because it is how we come to know God’s character.  God is faithful, and pulls through with all of His promises.  He is like a Father carrying His child.   Sadly it is so easy for believers to fall into the same mindset of the Israelites in the wilderness.  The Israelites become stiff-necked, and despite all God had done for them, they still continued to doubt God.  Here is how the Israelites responded, according to Moses, “In spite of this, you did not trust in the Lord your God, who went ahead of you on your journey, in fire by night and in cloud by day, to search out places for you to camp and to show you the way you should go.”-Deuteronomy 1:32-33  

Because of their lack of faith, that generation was then not able to enter into the promise land.  All except for one man named Caleb.

The Lord was angry and solemnly swore:  “No one from this evil generation shall see the good land I swore to give your ancestors, except Caleb son of Jephunneh.  He will see it, and I will give him and his descendants the land he set his feet on, because he followed the Lord wholeheartedly.”-Deuteronomy 1:34-36

Let us not be like the Israelites that tested God but like Caleb, who followed the Lord wholeheartedly!

“Circumcise your hearts, therefore, and do not be stiff-necked any longer.  For the Lord your God is a God of gods and Lord of lords, the Great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality and accepts no bribes.”-Deuteronomy 10:16-17

 

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Christian, devotion, Uncategorized

The Fire that burns within

One would have never known the feelings that are woven so deeply within the core of my being.  I myself would have never known.  The love, the dreams, the desires, that if properly lit could set the whole world on fire.  That is… if it is carefully lit.  There is a fire that rages within, that can not be smothered.  Though one may try to smother it, the fire stays.  It keeps  its flame.  What is this, this strange fire that will not be smothered?  I feel it roar through my very veins,  setting my soul aflame.  It is fiery love that courses through my veins.  I have become the flaming star that shines on the coldest darkest nights, even during the dead of winter.  I have become a burning candle that will light a whole house through the darkest hour.  Watch my flame, see how it dances?  Praising and thanking the Mighty One who has lit me.  It is only by the All Consuming Fire I can be lit.  He is the only one who sets my soul on fire.  He is the only one who will fill me with His fiery love.

Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe,  for our “God is a consuming fire.”-Hebrews 12:28-29

For You light my lamp; The LORD my God illumines my darkness.-Psalm 18:28

Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky.-Philippians 2:14-15

“No one, after lighting a lamp, puts it away in a cellar nor under a basket, but on the lampstand, so that those who enter may see the light. “The eye is the lamp of your body; when your eye is clear, your whole body also is full of light; but when it is bad, your body also is full of darkness. “Then watch out that the light in you is not darkness.-Luke 11:33-35

In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.-1 John 4:9-12

 
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Christian, Poem

The Broken Shell

Broken, yet beautiful.

Cracked, weathered and torn.
Filled with holes that fail to cover your insides.
It’s not natural to see the curves and spirals of your insides.

Yet, maybe it is…

First only seen and felt by the soul that was created in you.
Yet when broken, all is revealed.
The smoothness of your insides will be felt by all.

The missing pieces forever gone, but maybe you are better without them.
Left all by yourself, washed up on shore, along with all of the other broken pieces.
Stepped on by passerby’s who dismiss you as only a broken shell.

They miss your beauty, your worth.

Everyone sees beauty in perfection, but the one who sees beauty in brokenness will find the hidden treasures of this world.

Because the light that shines in the broken will shine brighter than the stars on the darkest night.

Maybe that is how God intended it to be.

His glory and light will only shine the brightest

In those who allow Him inside and let His light shine forth for all the world to see.

But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong.-1 Corinthians 1:27

But he said to me,  “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.  That is why for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in distresses, in persecutions, in difficulties.  For when I am weak, then I am strong.-2 Corinthians 12:9-10

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.-Psalm 73:26

Do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.” Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain.-Philippians 2:14-16

For God, who said, “Light shall shine out of darkness,” is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.-2 Corinthians 4:6

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”-John 8:12

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Christian

A Love Poem to God

All the stars in the sky
can never compare to the number of times
my weary mind conjures up
that image of Your smiling eyes
lighting up my very soul and mind
won’t You always be mine?

Your smile and Your wind
the whispers that come from Your lips
are like the rustling of the leaves
on a nearby tree
the bloom of a long awaited flower
watching it grow with all its power

Like the shooting of a star sky high
being seen by a passerby
it is the little things in life
my Love
that make You so dear to me
please, won’t You stay with me?

I no longer have to watch for shooting stars
You are the one I have been looking for
show me what it means to love once more
God, You were the missing piece
into the rest of my life that is meant to be
It is You that completes me
my Love
Forever more we shall be.

The LORD said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by.” Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake.
After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper.  
When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Then a voice said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”-1Kings 19:11-13

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bible verse, Christian, devotion

A letter to Those searching for Love

Dear All who have been let down by human love,

It is so amazing how temporary human love is. How we obsess so much over it. How powerful it can be in one moment, then gone in the next. How fragile it is. And often times we choose it over God’s love, which is unbearably much more powerful, fulfilling, and everlasting. It never fades, not even the slightest bit. His love never gives up, but always perseveres. It always forgives. When we have God and His love, we do not need anything else. In fact, His love is better than the life we live, the air we breathe, and the water we drink. His love out does it all. If only we could understand more! To know God and to feel Him! To be drenched and filled with His love. We have all been searching for that true love, when He’s been knocking on the doors of our hearts all along. Maybe it is time to answer the door and find out what real True Love is.

Sincerely,  Ally ❤

P.S.- I would totally recommend reading 1 John 4, it is my favorite passage and beautifully defines love.

Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you.-Psalm 63:3

But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.-Psalm86:15

Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.-1John 4:8

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away.-1 Corinthians 13:4-8

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. We love because he first loved us.-1 John 4:18-19

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.   For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.   Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son.-John 3:16-18

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bible verse, Christian, devotion

Let Us live in Truth!

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”-Psalm 91:1-2

Today God has given me the perfect Psalm.  It is Psalm 91, and if you get the chance you should definitely take time to read it.  It shows how God watches out for those who dwell and trust in Him.  Last night I was feeling discouraged because I was watching preachers discussing false prophets and wolves in sheep’s clothing.  I personally have been deceived and fell victim to false doctrine.  And let me tell you, it is no joke having to come out of that darkness.  It has left the biggest scar by far.  Worse of all, I myself have shared false doctrine when in the end I had no idea what I was talking about.  That is what happens when you go off of what people say but don’t check the word as the source of truth.  But God is merciful, and He does pull those who love Him out of darkness.

Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,  nor the plague that destroys at midday. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. You will only observe with your eyes and see the punishment of the wicked.-Psalm 91:3-8

 The scariest thing is that there are a lot of people who are deceived and have fallen away from the truth of the gospel.  There are people who truly think they are doing the will of God, but are instead incredibly deceived.  This breaks my heart, and I am only just beginning to fully understand God’s truth and how important it is to trust Him to guide us on the path of truth.  Let me put emphasis on to TRUST God to guide us on the path of truth.  We must read His word and pray so that we can have a relationship with our Father.  We must fully understand the gospel and know what Jesus has done for us.  We are guilty, and all have fallen short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23).  Our works will not get us into heaven.  It is our faith in Jesus, that He is the Son of God and has conquered death, that saves us.  It is only through Him that we can be made new and be adopted into the family of God.  Christ must always be emphasized, not miracles, not good deeds.  Jesus himself says,

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’-Matthew 7:21-23

How deceived I was to think I could make myself better by doing certain things like deliverance and good works.  I would think, “Maybe if I act like a happy good christian, then I will become one.”  As if I could raise myself from the dead.  I would think, “Maybe if I prophesy and speak in tongues enough, that will show how strong of a believer I am.”  How sad and confused I was to think I had to constantly go to church and get “deliverance” in order for me to be healed and safe. I just wanted to be on good terms with God. If someone is telling you something contrary to the Gospel, and not just by words but actions too, turn the other way.  Always go to the word of God for the truth.  If they aren’t preaching that though we were sinners Christ came down and died for us as the perfect sacrifice, don’t listen.  Most of all, if they put emphasis on human works and good deeds, but not God’s mercy, forget it.  Our God is awesome, and He wants all your faith and trust. If these people don’t believe that God is mighty enough, faithful enough, strong enough to personally deliver us from our slavery to sin, they are deeply deceived.

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.-Galatians 5:1

 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.  I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!-Galatians 2:20-21

But let me tell you my friends, God wants to be more than on good terms with you.  He wants to make us whole and alive.  He wants to fill us with His love.  He wants a one on one personal relationship with us.  When I had been living in deception, I had become this girl who was in constant fear of spiritual warfare.  I was so scared that there were things that would always keep me from getting closer to God.  This is not the way it is supposed to be. Perfect love casts out fear! (1 John 4:18) The one who fears is not made perfect in love.  That means when God enters our lives, there is absolutely no room for fear anymore.(We aren’t talking about fearing God, but unhealthy fears, the ones that cause you to doubt God)

If you say, “The Lord is my refuge,” and you make the Most High your dwelling,10 no harm will overtake you,  no disaster will come near your tent.11 For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways; 12 they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. 13 You will tread on the lion and the cobra;  you will trample the great lion and the serpent.-Psalm 91:9-13

 

We don’t need a human that is “anointed” to heal and deliver us.  Good works will not heal and deliver us.  We need Jesus to heal and deliver us!  When you give your life to Him, He has already won.  Your life is in His hands now, and He will free you from any bondage or chains.  We must have FAITH and trust in the Lord.  We must trust Him to guide us on the path of truth.  We need to realize we have HOPE now because of Christ.  We will be made new in Christ, no matter what it takes.  Most of all we have God, who is LOVE, so we have nothing to fear.  Love never fails! May we learn to rest and take refuge in our great God for the rest of our days.

14 “Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.15 He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him. 16 With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation.”-Psalm 91:14-16

Here is some scripture concerning false prophets and false doctrine:

You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard so that you are not carried away by the error of unprincipled men and fall from your own steadfastness, but grow in the grace and knowledge  of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  To Him be the glory both now and forever! Amen.-2Peter 3:17-18

Now I urge you, brethren, keep your eye on those who cause dissensions and hindrances contrary to the teaching which you learned, and turn away from them. For such men are slaves, not of our Lord Christ but of their own appetites; and by their smooth and flattering speech they deceive the hearts of the unsuspecting.-Romans 16:17-18

But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.-2Peter 2:1-3

“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. A healthy tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a diseased tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. …-Matthew 7:15-20

For God is not a God of disorder but of peace–as in all the congregations of the Lord’s people.-1 Corinthians 14:33

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already.-1 John 4:1-3

 
 
 
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bible verse, Christian, devotion, Uncategorized

Comfort for those in Distress

“But those who suffer He delivers in their suffering; He speaks to them in their affliction.  He is wooing you from the jaws of distress to a spacious place free from restriction…” -Job 36:15-16

This is for all of you who suffer from heartbreak, sorrow, distress, misfortune, and all the other painful things life brings. These are the things that cut our hearts the deepest and leave their impressions on us for the rest of our lives.  We ask, “Why did God let this happen to me?” and “How will I ever be able to go about my life like normal again?”  We see the broken, bruised pieces of our hearts and try to shove them back together again.  Whenever the pain comes back we yell, “Just heal already!  Get over it!  You are making a big deal out of nothing.”  As if we could heal our own hearts.  I hate to break it to you, but we can’t heal our own hearts.  Only God can.  So the big question is, why does He allow this pain in our lives?  What if we are innocent like Job, yet all this pain and suffering comes our way?  What many Christians will come to realize is that the biggest turning points in their relationship with God is usually during the most painful periods of their lives.  That is when you realize that you need something strong to hold on to, or else you will shatter into a million pieces.  You suddenly realize all the things you put your faith and trust in you can’t depend on after all.  Everything in life suddenly becomes a blur and you can’t find meaning and purpose anymore.  You thought you had your life under control, and all the sudden your worst nightmares are coming around.  Sometimes we need to be broken in order to realize how much we need God, how important it is for us to be deeply rooted in Him.  When life is good, we easily forget the importance of the Solid Rock in our lives.  But when all hell breaks loose, that is by far the best reality check for us.  He is teaching us to grow and dwell in Him, so that we can have a closer relationship with Him.  We shouldn’t be growing numb to Him!  When we are in distress He will “Woo you from the jaws of distress to a spacious place free from restriction…”  Sometimes growing closer to God is a painful process, but it is absolutely worth the pain, because God’s love is better than life.

For You have been a defense for the helpless, A defense for the needy in his distress, A refuge from the storm, a shade from the heat; For the breath of the ruthless Is like a rain storm against a wall.-Isaiah 25:4

Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?-Romans 8:35

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance” -James 1:2-3

“Lord my God, I called to You for help, and you healed me.”-Psalm 30:2

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