River of Life pt 2

RIVER OF LIFE PART 2 

Ezekiel 47:10-12

10 Fishermen will stand along the shores of the Dead Sea. All the way from En-gedi to En-eglaim, the shores will be covered with nets drying in the sun. Fish of every kind will fill the Dead Sea, just as they fill the Mediterranean.11 But the marshes and swamps will not be purified; they will still be salty. 12 Fruit trees of all kinds will grow along both sides of the river. The leaves of these trees will never turn brown and fall, and there will always be fruit on their branches. There will be a new crop every month, for they are watered by the river flowing from the Temple. The fruit will be for food and the leaves for healing.”

Wherever the RIVER OF LIFE flows, there will be life. This river we’re talking about is God’s word, God’s love, God’s grace, God’s mercy, and God’s wholeness. Where God’s word is wet out, it will not return to Him void. His word and love will change things form death to LIFE. Believe and trust Him, for His grace and mercy is for all. Wherever this river flows, wholeness exists.

When our focus is God and His love for us, we grow. But we don’t grow to die, we grow to live. “We are in Him and He is in us” so wherever He is, there is fullness and abundance. We will continue to grow in God and we will begin to produce good fruits, (love, grace, mercy, and forgiveness). These characteristics will grow even more in us as we are continuously watered by the RIVER OF LIFE (GOD AND HIS WORD). Remain at the River (IN CHRIST) and our roots will grow stronger. 



River of Life

River Of Life

Ezekiel 47:6-9

He asked me, “Have you been watching, son of man?” Then he led me back along the riverbank. When I returned, I was surprised by the sight of many trees growing on both sides of the river. Then he said to me, “This river flows east through the desert into the valley of the Dead Sea.[a] The waters of this stream will make the salty waters of the Dead Sea fresh and pure. There will be swarms of living things wherever the water of this river flows.[b]

 Fish will abound in the Dead Sea, for its waters will become fresh. Life will flourish wherever this water flows.

Jeremiah 17:7-8 

“But blessed is the man who trusts me, God,     the woman who sticks with God. They’re like trees replanted in Eden,     putting down roots near the rivers— Never a worry through the hottest of summers,     never dropping a leaf, Serene and calm through droughts,     bearing fresh fruit every season.

 

Stay ALERT, see what God has done and is doing in us, through us, and all around us. If we choose life, then LIFE is what we will get, but if we don’t, then death is what we get. The TRUTH of the matter is JESUS died so that we would have LIFE and LIFE more abundant. We draw our strength from the LORD and His word. Picture the bible as a river that is always flowing, bringing LIFE wherever it exist. When the word of GOD penetrates in us, it causes the dead things to come to LIFE revealing our true identity in CHRIST. Our LIFE is not over, the best is still on its way. Don’t settle for the ways of the world, but put HOPE and TRUST in GOD. When our trust and focus are in God, we are at the river that continuously brings LIFE and a GOOD LIFE at that! Stay rooted in Christ (the life-giving river) and when seasons change, we will still bear fruit in every one. And to top it off, God provides the peace to endure every season.



Awesome God

Ephesians 6:10-12
A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.
 
AWESOME GOD
Now is the time to seek God; not yesterday, not tomorrow, but NOW! Scripture tells us that our minds are renewed daily. Thank God we do not have to carry the weight of yesterday and tomorrow around. Be renewed NOW!
 
Seek Him first with everything! Build your relationship with God by His love for you, His grace for you, His mercy for you, and His forgiveness for you. Pull your strength from Him and His word. Use what He has given you to GROW, forgive yourself and move forward. Philippians 4:13 says “For I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength”. Be strong, diligent, consistent, faithful, and courageous through Him. God is the Provider and source from where our HELP comes from. Don’t back away when things get tough, but press forward in Him and who He says you are “HIS BELOVED”.
 
God is our strength, our authority, our healer, our provider, our protector, and our EVERYTHING! It is only with a relationship with Christ and operating in the authority that he’s placed on the inside of us that we can stand up to anything that comes our way. Recognize who you are in Him and know there is a spiritual warfare going on, so be careful not to judge and condemn others because of the attacks they are facing. We once were under attack too, but learning who we are in Him and operating from his source of authority and protection, WE BECAME VICTORS! Only by Christ’s love, grace, and mercy!


Work In Progress…

Hebrews 12:10-11
For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a few years, doing the best they knew how. But God’s discipline is always good for us, so that we might share in his holiness. No discipline is enjoyable while it is happening-it’s painful! But afterward there will be a peaceful harvest of right living for those who are trained in this way.
 
Work In Progress….
 
God’s discipline will last forever. He does not discipline us with condemnation, hate, or just plain old meanness. He disciplines us because He loves us even through our mess, (failures, fear, doubt, insecurities, pride, etc.). God loves us more than we could ever know; let Him come and make you whole. You see, when your trust and focus is in Jesus, you are growing every day depending on Him for your peace, joy, love, provision, and unity. Sometimes discipline is hard and we may feel inferior or less than, but “Greater is He” with an everlasting love for us! He wants to bring us into HIS GREATNESS!! 
 
Father, thank you, that I don’t have to do this on my own. You are with me every step of the way, through the best times, through the worse times, and everywhere in between. And I know that my best days are still ahead of me but I thank you for the right now, understanding that I’m growing through the process. Thank you for your love, grace, mercy, guidance, and protection. In Jesus name…Amen!


Still Stand

2 Corinthians 4:7-12
We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.
We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed, We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies. Yes, live under constant danger of death because we serve Jesus, so that the life of Jesus will be evident in our dying bodies. So we live in the face of death, but this has resulted in eternal life for you.

STILL STAND
Christ in me, though I’m weak in my own strength, takes our weaknesses and makes them strong, You see, on my own I will crumble and fall, but when the Power of the Holy Spirit is ACTIVATED in me, I stand on a solid foundation, a rock that will not be moved by the ways of the world……..Sin, failures, mistakes, and troubles come, but Christ in me STILL STANDS. We are no longer dominated by our problems or sins! Sometimes it will seem as if the enemy has run us down with all his tactics and strategies, but God is always with me everywhere I go! And because of Him, we can face anything and not be destroyed!
Christ suffered so we would have LIFE! As He suffered so do we, but only to grow closer to Him. God is using our struggles to strengthen us. You see, it’s not bad but good that we go through stuff, it is like we are being pruned into a magnificent tree. We should be thankful that God cuts away the dead branches, (shame, guilt, fear, sin, insecurity, pride,)- these things weigh us down and take our energy so there is no need for them to stick around. Verse seven says ” His light is shinning in our hearts” even though we are fragile and weak. So when things come against us or are being cut away, it only produces an opportunity for God’s glorious LIGHT to shine!

The enemy knows that the Holy Spirit, the power and authority of Christ, is living in you taking you to do great things and into a destiny that no one can stop. (Remember it is spiritual warfare) But God does the impossible in our lives. “Though I am weak, He is strong.” There is nothing greater than what God can do, even through our sin, failures, mistakes, and pride. “He will use all things to work together for our GOOD.” It is not our power but Christ’s power that changes things.


Point to Stand

POINT TO STAND
 
James 4:7-10 NLT      So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come close to God, and God will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between God and the world. Let there be tears for what you have done. Let there be sorrow and deep grief. Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and He will lift you up in honor.
 
Scripture says to seek God first and in verse 7 we see that we are to for or take it to Him first and only then are we able to resist the devil.
Anything that we are dealing with, (pride, fear, doubt, dishonesty, adultery, addiction, shame, guilt, envy) all need to go before God for the true help, and true cleansing that we seek! These things tend to weigh us down even to the point of hitting rock bottom: NOW is the time to reach out to God! He is the ONE who will build us up. Notice hitting rock bottom can sometimes be the only solid place we have because we’ve come to the end of ourselves and are ready to release it in exchange for His peace, a place of vulnerability that God can work with. And NOW I CAN STAND FIRM ON THE ROCK who is God, Jesus, and His Word!!


The Power of Being Positive


img_1407

Jesus looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the offering box, and he saw a poor widow put in two small copper coins. And he said, “Truly, I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them. For they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.” Luke 21:1-38 ESV

Think about your day… now think about how many times you recognized the bad things that happened today. The weather was awful (in our area) so that’s something to bring you down… but what else happened? Did your work today go unrecognized? Did someone pull out in front of you on your way home? Did you want to cry when you saw how much groceries actually cost? Did you get a bill that you don’t know how you’re going to pay?

Now think back to all the good things that happened today? The simple, small, acts of kindness. Did someone let you in front of them in the grocery store because you had far less than they did in their cart? Was the woman (or man) in the drive-thru polite and kind to you? Did someone hold the door for you so you could get out of the rain faster? Did someone say “God Bless You” when you sneezed?

I know, for myself, if a tractor trailer pulls out in front of me or cuts me off and they have a “how’s my driving” sticker on the back of their truck, I’m the first person to call that number and complain. But when someone is genuinely doing a good job, I don’t bother picking up the phone to compliment that driver. Or when I go to get something to eat, and the waiter/waitress is unkind, I am the first to ask for a manger. But when they are genuinely great, I typically wont’ ask for the manager to compliment their service. This is a habit that I really need to break…

How many times in life do we focus on the negative rather than counting our blessings? The quoted message above tells about a woman that gave everything she had to the Lord, even in her poverty, she gave what she had. This scripture doesn’t seem to speak of a woman that focused her energy entirely on the negative things in her life, but rather trusted in the Lord enough to give everything she had to him.

I challenge you today (and this week) to focus on the positive things that happen in your day to day life… the little things. Start being thankful to the Lord and to the kind people that still exist in the world. And when someone is polite or kind, make sure to thank them. I promise you, if you put your focus on the positive thoughts and positive thing that happen, (no matter how small), eventually these things will build up and you won’t be able to put your time and energy into the negative anymore.

Prayer for this week:

Lord, let us not focus our energy on the things of this world that were intended to harm us. Rather, let us focus our eyes on you, the author and finisher of our faith. Help us to see the many great things you give us each and every day, so that in everything, we can be thankful.
 
Praise Song of the Week:
Chain Breaker – Zach Williams
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGYjKR69M6U