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Archive for the ‘Overcoming’ Category

Where Is Your Pain Taking You?

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Where Is Your Pain Taking You?

 

I am not talking about the kind of pain that takes one to the Doctor’s office or the Emergency Room. There are some pains and hurts so bad that they cannot be medicated or cured by science. Those pains need our focus.

 

There’s A Kind Of Pain That Doesn’t Always Lead Its Companions To The ER.

  • This Pain will lead you in one of two directions.
  • This Pain may lead you to God.
  • This Pain may lead you away from God.

 

Pain will take you to countries you never knew existed.

Pain will give you citizenship in a foreign land that speaks a language known only to the locals.

Pain can pass itself off as a congenial tour guide while leading you down paths from which from which few ever return.

 

Pain will isolate you from family and friends.

Pain will tell you that you are alone and no one cares.

Pain will turn on you like a vampire and eat pieces of your heart out every day.

Pain will demand that you let it do your thinking for you.

 

Pain desires to control your actions and your feelings.

Pain plots to become your master.

Pain will dominate you.

Pain will control you for the rest of your life.

 

You Don’t Have To Go Looking For Pain. Pain Will Come Look For You!

 

Oh, Wounded Spirit!

Where Is Your Pain Taking You?

 

Don’t Let The Thorn (Pain) In Your Side Become A Thorn (Pain) In Your Spirit.

 

Pain will try to make you question God.

Pain will tell you God doesn’t know where you are at.

Pain will tell you that you are wasting your time at church.

Pain will tell you that you have more friends outside of church than you do inside.

Pain will tell you to turn your back on God because He let your family member die.

 

Pain will lead you to bitterness.

Pain will lead you to vengeance.

Pain will make you hateful.

Pain will make you unapproachable by God or man.

 

Pain will control your attitude.

Pain will control your reaction.

Pain will control your walk with God.

Pain will control your relationship with everyone.

Pain will control your attitude.

 

Pain will control your level of worship.

Pain will control your prayer life.

Pain will control your trust in people.

Pain will control your church attendance.

 

Pain is toxic.

Pain is demanding of your time.

Pain tends to take you away from God rather than to Him.

Pain will minimize your ability to function as a Person.

Pain will minimize your ability to function as a Saint.

 

Pain will minimize your ability to function as a Soul-winner

Pain will minimize your ability to function as a Spouse

Pain will minimize your ability to function as a Parent

Pain will minimize your ability to function as a Friend

Pain will minimize your ability to function as a Preacher

 

Where Is Your Pain Taking You?

To God, or away from God?

 

Pain Will Point At Your Cancer.

Pain Will Point At Your Divorce.

Pain Will Point At Your Lost Job.

Pain Will Point At Your Unfaithful Spouse.

 

Pain Will Point At Your Rejection.

Pain Will Point At Your Abuse.

Pain Will Point At Your Disappointments.

Pain Will Point At Your Failures.

 

Pain Will Point At Your Discouragements.

Pain Will Point At Your Sickness.

Pain Will Point At Your Neglect.

Pain Will Point At Your Injuries.

 

Pain Will Point At Your Loneliness.

Pain Will Point At Your Shame.

Pain Will Point At Your Addiction.

Pain Will Point At Your Condemnation.

 

Pain Will Point At Your Scars.

Pain Will Point At Your Enemy’s Success.

Pain Will Point At Your Abused Past.

Pain Will Point At Your Fear.

 

Don’t let Pain determine your eternity.

Don’t let Pain choose your eternity.

Don’t let Pain control your destiny.

 

Pain makes injured animals go into hiding to recover or die.

Pain makes injured lambs go to the shepherd for help.

 

Pain made David seek comfort in the Cave of Adullam.

Pain made Elijah hide in a cave too.

Pain made the Woman with the issue of blood touch Jesus.

Pain made the Syrophoenician mother ask Jesus for a miracle.

 

Where Is Your Pain Taking You?

Has It Taken You Into Hiding From God And Man?

 

How Will You Respond To Pain?

What will you do now?

What will be your reaction?

 

Job’s Attitude Refused To Let Pain Lead Him Away From God!

Job 13:15 Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him.

 

When The Prodigal Came To Himself, He Came Home To The Father And Was Restored!

 

Where Is Your Pain Taking You?

To God, or away from God?

 

 

 

 

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

June 24, 2017 at 6:46 am

My Name Is Leah

with 11 comments

 

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My Name Is Leah

My name is Leah and I am the oldest daughter of Laban. My sister, Rachel, is younger than I and everyone says she is very beautiful. She was the village favorite. (Gen 29:17) When visitors first meet us, they seem to be smitten by her beauty and repulsed when they look at me. I’m not beautiful and I’ve had to live with that all my life.

The lives of our whole family changed however, when Jacob arrived in our village. He looked travel worn and he was penniless. My father told us that his family was originally from our village and was well respected.

I saw immediately that Jacob was smitten by the looks of Rachel. I had expected that. Everyone noticed how he looked in her direction and tried to catch her eye if he could. He immediately asked my dad for a job and worked tending to our cattle.

I was crushed when I realized he wanted to marry my sister. I cried sometimes when I could be alone. It seemed like romance was for everyone but me. Jacob bargained with dad to work seven years for Rachel to be his bride. Jacob courted her and I tried to mind my own business and stay out of their way. They were so much in love. Love for me was always a one-way street. No one loved me back.

The wedding was a big celebration! All our relatives and the whole village came. My father sat Rachel and me down for a very private talk prior to the wedding. He informed Rachel that he had a plan. He said that adhering to the village custom of marrying off the oldest daughter first was a custom to be honored, and that rightly I should be the bride. (Gen 29:26) Dad said that he didn’t think Jacob would leave anyway and that he felt he would hang around long enough to marry the both of us. Rachel was crestfallen. I was surprised and happy. We were all unsure of Jacob’s reaction to me when he found out the truth, but planned to go ahead with the switch.

We pulled it off too. At the wedding, I was ecstatic and scared at the same time and afraid to look at Rachel because I felt her disappointment. It was evident to me that my sister truly began to hate and despise me. I stole her man. Although she was beautiful, she was bitter, and envious. I felt the full force of her hatred. Our bond of sisterhood stood on rocky ground.

The next morning Jacob woke up and looked at my face for the first time in the light of day. I cannot describe the shock and utter disappointment in his eyes. Maybe it was more akin to disgust. I can never fully explain the feeling of being married to a man who doesn’t love you. All you can think about is him and all he can think about is another woman.

Jacob made a covenant with my father to work seven more years for Rachel. He intended to marry us both.

I named my children according to the conditions of my marital status at the times of their births.

 

Rueben

I named my first son, Reuben. His name means, “Behold a son. The Lord has seen (in Hebrew ra’ah) my affliction” and “now my husband will love me (ye’ehabani)”(Genesis 29:32). I praised God for showing me this favor. I could hold my head up in the village. All would know that I had given my husband a son. I was now considered a worthy wife. It was as though God had seen that I was unloved and He opened my womb.

Rachel showed her true self again. I thought surely now Jacob will love me. But no, it didn’t change a thing. Rachel’s love toward me seemed to be gone. Jacob saved all his sweet words for her. They were lost in each other’s worlds.

All I did was cook, clean, take care of the baby and look after my husbands needs. I certainly never felt loved or cherished. I was only there for the needs of the man. My own needs were not to be considered. Ever.

 

Simeon

When my second child was born, it was a boy. I named him, Simeon because “the Lord heard (shama) that I was unloved”(Genesis 29:33). It was no secret that my husband didn’t love me. I guess my only purpose was to provide him with sons.

God knew my sorrow and tried to comfort me. I cried much and kept to myself. There was little benefit for me to make myself available to Jacob in social settings. I was not his trophy wife. I was treated as a second-class wife. He would not walk me around the village and show me off. I felt like a second-class wife because I wasn’t beautiful. Jacob was evidently too foolish to see beyond the face. I stayed in the tent and cared for the babies.

 

Levi

In the process of time I realized I was to have another child. My third baby was also a boy. I named him Levi thinking “this time my husband will become attached (yillaweh) to me”(Genesis 29:34).

All I ever wanted was for him to love me and to show it by saying something sweet or doing something nice. It never happened.

I knew that feeling sorry for myself was not doing me any good. I started thinking and realized that God had been gracious to me through it all. Was my world perfect? No. Not that I could see or feel, yet I believed God was good. He had blessed me and given me sons. I may not have the beauty of my sister, but I made up my mind to be a good wife and a good mother of our children and to be beautiful on the inside.

I learned to turn my face toward Jehovah and thank Him for what I did have instead of focusing on what I didn’t.

 

Judah

My fourth son’s name had nothing to do with my relationship with my husband. I named him Judah because I had made up my mind, “this time I will praise (odeh) the Lord”(Genesis 29:35).

After I had our four children, Jacob’s next two sons were born to Rachel’s maid Bilhah. She had given her handmaid to Jacob out of desperation. I felt sorry for her, so I then gave Jacob my own maid, Zilpah, as a concubine. Zilpah gave him two sons, Gad and Asher.

 

Issachar

One time, during a harvest, Reuben brought me some mandrakes. Rachel wanted them and said that if I gave them to her she would let me have her night to sleep with Jacob in exchange. After that, my fifth son was born. I named him Issachar. It means, “He will bring a reward.” (Genesis 30:14-18)

As a mother I can tell that although Jacob is kind to my children, he doesn’t dote on them. It makes my heart hurt. Maybe when he looks on them, they remind him of me. If he can’t love me, then my prayer is that he would love our sons.

 

The Stolen Idols

The relationship between my husband and my father turned really sour. Jacob told me that the last time he looked at my dad, he could tell that things between them had drastically changed by the expression on his face, (Gen 31:2) and that the Lord had spoken to him and told him we must leave here immediately.

When Rachel heard the news, and knowing that father just left with the sheep, she went into his tent and stole his gods. We left in the middle of the night and we were gone three days before my dad found out. But when he found out he was very angry and chased hard after us. It took him almost week to finally catch up.

He hollered and yelled loud at Jacob accusing him of everything he could think of. He wanted to know why we had left and when he found out that it was because we didn’t trust him and that he was dishonest, he really got mad.

Jacob told dad, “Thus have I been twenty years in thy house; I served thee fourteen years for thy two daughters, and six years for thy cattle: and thou hast changed my wages ten times.” (Gen 31:41)

Dad said we had stolen his gods. Jacob didn’t know that Rachel had hidden them in her tent. He gave dad permission to search everyone’s tent and all their possessions and look for his gods. He never found them because his little pet, the baby of the family was sly. Rachel sat on a pile of carpets that hid the idols and told Dad she couldn’t get up because she was “after the manner of women.” She just batted her big brown eyes at him and he smiled back and never made her move.

The idols were not found, so my father and my husband piled up a heap of stones and made a covenant of friendship, and then he kissed us girls and the grandchildren a final goodbye and departed, leaving us to live in peace.

 

The Coming Of Esau

Jacob shared many stories about his boyhood. Evidently, he and his brother, Esau were total opposites. He told us about his father becoming old and going blind. Custom was that the oldest son inherited two thirds of the father’s goods and the rest of the children equally divided up the remaining third.

Jacob said that one day he caught Esau at a weak moment and bartered with him for his birthright. The problem was in getting the birthright blessing from the father. His father doted on Esau because of his prowess as a hunter and outdoorsman. But, Jacob was his mother’s pet. When it was time to receive the blessing, she helped him deceive his father and obtain the birthright blessing prayer.

He had to leave home immediately because when Esau found out that his birthright had been stolen, Esau wanted to kill Jacob. Now, word just arrived after all these years that Esau was indeed coming for him with a mighty army of soldiers threatening to kill him.

Jacob said that we were all to cross over the ford Jabbok and wait while he stayed there to pray. He fervently prayed and an Angel came and began to wrestle with him. They wrestled all night long. Finally the Angel begged to be let go but Jacob said that he wouldn’t let him go until he got a blessing from him.

The angel said that he was changing his name. He would now be called, Israel, because he would now have power with God and with men. (Gen. 32:28)

The Angel smote Jacob on the thigh to break his hold. It forever affected how he walked from then on. He limped for the rest of his life.

In the morning when we arose, we saw Jacob hurriedly limping towards us. He said that Esau was coming and there would no doubt be bloodshed. He divided up the children putting the animals, the servants and their children first.

He then put my children and me next, because we too were more expendable. But, he kept Rachel and her son at the back with him. He may lose the rest of us but he wanted to keep her alive. It was very plain where I stood with him even after all these years. (Gen 33:2)

When Esau came and confronted us, Jacob humbled himself and sent him large gifts. Before long the two ran towards each other, fell on each other’s necks and kissed. I took my children toward Esau and we bowed down before him in respect. All ended peaceable. We were certainly relieved and after the meeting and we all gave thanks unto God.

 

Zebulun

My next son, I named Zebulun. He was to be my last boy. His name means to dwell. He was Jacob’s tenth son and my sixth. I later had a daughter, whom I named Dinah, before Rachel gave birth to her first child.

 

Joseph

When Rachel gave birth to her little Joseph, Jacob was beside himself with joy. He showed that baby more attention than he ever had to all of the others. The children could all tell that Joseph was his favorite.

All we heard around the tent from Jacob was news about Joseph. He doted on him. The other children watched wistfully knowing that they were not loved like that. He made special clothes for him and gave him gifts that were better than he gave to my sons.

Rachel seemed to feel like nothing was wrong with Jacob giving so much attention to her son and very little to his other ten sons.

 

The Trip To Bethel

Jacob said that God had told him that we were all to return to the Bethel. Jacob said that we were to wash and be clean, change our clothes, and put away our idols. So, all of our family and our servants did as he asked. We knew the worship of our gods required the wearing of earrings, so we gave them to Jacob along with our gods. (Gen 35:1-4; Hosea 2:13) He took what we gave him and buried all of it under the big oak tree in Shechem.

We traveled on to Bethel, the place where God first met with our husband. The first thing Jacob did was to build an altar and offer up a sacrifice of repentance. God accepted his prayers and blessed him. It was there that his mother’s nurse, Deborah, died. She was buried at Bethel. Jacob grieved hard because she was his last living connection with his mother and father.

 

Benjamin

When we left Bethel, Rachel went into labor. She died giving birth to her second son. It was so tragic. We were in shock. Before she died, Rachel named her son Benoni (“son of my mourning”), but Jacob called him Benjamin. (Gen. 35:18)

Rachel had passionately said, Give me children, or else I die; and now that she had children, she died!

Jacob made no attempt to bury Rachel with his family like I thought he would do since he loved her so much. He just buried her beside the highway and placed a marker on her lonely grave. If he would bury his favorite wife beside the road at the first available spot, where would he bury me? Would I too be given a roadside burial?

After Rachel died, Jacob replaced her bed, which was beside his, with her handmaiden Bilhah’s bed. It so infuriated my son Rueben that he overturned Bilhah’s bed and rebuked his father. Jacob never forgot that moment and mentioned it on the day he pronounced blessings and prayers upon his sons. (Gen. 49:3-4)

 

Epilogue

Leah’s outward appearance may have been unattractive to others, but God was attracted to her because of her inward beauty. He chose her. It was Leah, not Rachel, who bore Judah, and it was through his bloodline that the Savior was born.

After Rachel’s death, Leah carried on as the wife of Jacob, and the mother of his many children, living in Canaan. The Bible does not say when she died, but Leah is buried in the family burial tomb of Machpelah, beside her husband Jacob with Abraham, Sarah, Isaac and Rebekah. (Genesis 49:29-31). Leah was loved too late. Her real beauty unnoticed most of her life. Yet, in her death and burial she was shown great honor and respect.

 

The Life Lesson Of Leah

Sometimes in life we wake up to the very thing we don’t want. Life doesn’t always give you a Rachel. Although you find it difficult to love the “Ugly Leah Situation” that is forever connected to you, it just may wind up being your greatest life blessing. Surprisingly, you may find yourself saying the words, “I love you” to the very thing you once hated.

The Leah in your life never changed, you did. Her beauty wasn’t on the outside, so no one took the time to see what God could see all along. Leah was beautiful where it counted the most. She was beautiful on the inside. Don’t hate your “Leah”; she is God’s gift to you. Do not despise the ugly thing in life that you suddenly have to wake up to. Your “Leah” may be a bad Doctor’s Report, a Financial Disaster, a Broken Marriage, a Physical Disability or even Heartache. Embrace it. It just may be a gift from God to you!

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

July 8, 2016 at 11:15 am

Things You Won’t Fix

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Things You Won’t Fix

Isn’t it amazing how we can allow ourselves to live with situations that are not normal? Not only do we live with it, but also we ignore it, saying that when we get the time we’ll fix it.

Things Like:

  • A leaky faucet.
  • The cracked storm window.
  • Some partially finished remodeling job.
  • Your leaky roof.

 

  • The broken back doorstep.
  • Missing basement handrail.
  • A button missing from a sport coat.
  • That rotten tooth that needs pulled?

Never Fixed

We Mention It, Say We Need To Do It, But Let It Go Another Year.

  • The things you don’t fix will fix you.
  • It WILL put you in a fix.
  • Is the cost of not fixing it cheaper than fixing it? No! Never.
  • Aren’t there some things your wife has asked you to fix six months ago and you still haven’t gotten around to it?
  • If you don’t fix your car, you’ll put it up on blocks and it will sit as an eyesore for years out in the front yard.  Everyone will know you by that landmark.

 

  • The leaky faucet will raise your water bill.
  • The leaky roof will cost you thousands to fix because you let it go.
  • The tooth will give you more pain than you could imagine.
  • When a house is not fixed we say they just let the place go.
  • There are just some things you won’t fix.

 

King Solomon Marveled At Men Who Procrastinated During The Harvest.

  • Prov. 24:30 I went by the field of the slothful, and by the vineyard of the man void of understanding;
  • Prov. 24:31 And, lo, it was all grown over with thorns, and nettles had covered the face thereof, and the stone wall thereof was broken down.
  • Prov. 24:32 Then I saw, and considered it well: I looked upon it, and received instruction.

 

Common Phrases Are Used In Regards To One’s Personal Appearance.

  • “She fixed herself up.”
  • “He let himself go”

 

When We Do Not Do Something Immediately, We Call It Procrastination.

The closest word to procrastination in the Bible is, sluggard. We are repulsed by even the thought of being called a sluggard.

The sluggard is a procrastinator. His motto is, “Never do today what you can put off until tomorrow.” Sluggards have developed the ability to put off starting a task as well as not completing those they have already begun.

The sluggard rationalizes everything and his mind works much faster than his body. He will always quickly find an excuse not to.

  • I don’t have the time
  • I don’t have the tools
  • I don’t have the know-how
  • I don’t have the desire
  • I don’t feel in the mood
  • I got a lot of irons in the fire
  • I have a headache

There Are Those Who Never Fix Themselves Spiritually. They Just Let Themselves Go.

 

Are There Some Things In Our Hearts That We Won’t Fix?

  • A bad attitude?
  • A bad habit?
  • No prayer life?
  • No worship?

 

  • Not honoring God with our tithes?
  • Broken family relationships?
  • Bridges we need to build?
  • Restoring an offended brother?
  • Not saying I’m sorry, forgive me?

 

Be Reconciled To Your Brother Before To Expect God To Hear You.

  • Matt 5:23 Therefore if thou bring thy gift to the altar, and there rememberest that thy brother hath ought against thee;
  • Matt 5:24 Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift.

 

Need To Fix Your Back Tithe Problem?

  • It will cost you heavily if you do not fix the problem areas of your soul.
  • It will cost you 20% additional if you do not stay current with your tithing. The longer you wait the more it will cost you.
  • Lev 27:31 And if a man will at all redeem ought of his tithes, he shall add thereto the fifth part thereof.

 

When You Don’t Fix It, Then It’s Becomes Sin!

  • Jas 4:17 Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.
  • We like to use the word procrastinate, but that word is not in the Bible. A sluggard is what the Scripture calls us.
  • In the natural, your procrastination qualifies you as a sluggard.
  • In the spiritual, the Bible just calls you a sinner.
  • Spiritually, our pride keeps us from fixing some things.

 

There Are Things You Won’t Fix, Why?

  • You know you need the Holy Ghost speaking in tongues.
  • You know you need to be baptized in Jesus name to be saved.
  • You know you need to be faithful to church.
  • You know you need to worship.
  • You know you need to pay tithes.
  • You know you need to live a holy and separated life.
  • You know you need to be reconciled to your brother.

 

Jesus Called The Scribes And Pharisees, Hypocrites.

  • Mat 23:23 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
  • They only fixed the part men could see.
  • Hypocrites won’t fix what really needs to be fixed.

 

There Are Men In The Bible Who Never Fixed What Was Wrong In Their Life.

 

Agrippa Almost Got Right With God.

  • Acts 26:28 Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.
  • He never fixed it.

 

Felix Knew What He Needed To Do, But The Timing Wasn’t Right.

  • Acts 24:25 And as he reasoned of righteousness, temperance, and judgment to come, Felix trembled, and answered, Go thy way for this time; when I have a convenient season, I will call for thee.
  • He never fixed it.

 

The Rich Young Ruler Thought It Cost Too Much To Follow Jesus.

  • Matt. 19:22 But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions.
  • He never fixed it.

 

When It Comes To Fixing, Some Things God Has Put A Time Limit On.

  • Eph 4:26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
  • God’s curfew for anger is sunset. Fix your disagreements before the sun goes down. That’s God’s requirement.
  • Fix it.

 

The Four Lepers Fixed It

  • 2Ki 7:3 And there were four leprous men at the entering in of the gate: and they said one to another, Why sit we here until we die?
  • They fixed it!

 

Jacob Had A Problem But He Fixed It When He Wrestled With The Angel

  • Gen 32:24 And Jacob was left alone; and there wrestled a man with him until the breaking of the day.
  • He fixed it!

 

The Prodigal Son

  • Luke 15:18 I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,
  • Luke 15:19 And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.
  • He fixed it!

 

The History of Obligatory Archery Practice!

The references to horses, riders, kingdoms and battles in “For want of a nail” indicate the English origins of the rhyme. One of the English Kings did not leave anything to chance! In 1363, to ensure the continued safety of the realm, King Edward III commanded the obligatory practice of archery on Sundays and holidays! The earliest known written version of the rhyme is in John Gower’s “Confesio Amantis” dated approximately 1390.

 

“For Want Of A Nail”

For want of a nail the shoe was lost.

For want of a shoe the horse was lost.

For want of a horse the rider was lost.

For want of a rider the battle was lost.

For want of a battle the kingdom was lost.

And all for the want of a horseshoe nail.

 

Are there are things God has asked you to fix and you still haven’t gotten around to it?

Why would you expect God to fix things for you that you’re not willing to fix for yourself?

Have you got a loose or lost nail in your life?

Please fix it.

Yes, Fix It Now!

 

The Devil’s Got A Plan For You That Just Might Work …If You Let It.

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The Devil’s Got A Plan

The Devil’s Got A Plan For You That Just Might Work …If You Let It.

 

Jesus Told Peter That Satan Desired To Sift Him As Wheat.

Luke 22:31 And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:

Luke 22:32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.

  • Satan desires to do the same to you.

 

He Plans To Intimidate You And Ravage You Just Like A Roaring Lion Does.

1Pe 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

 

Surely You Are Aware Of His Plan.

2Cor. 2:11 Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices.

 

God’s Got A Plan To Help You Resist The Devil.

James 4:7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

  • First, submit yourself to God, then resist the devil and he will flee.

 

The Devil Can’t Do Anything To You That You Don’t Allow Him To Because Greater Is He That Is Within You Than He That Is In The World.

1John 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.

 

My Father, Carl Ballestero Used To Say:

“The Devil’s Got A Plan To Get You To Backslide!

He has a One Day Plan to make you backslide. If that doesn’t work…

He has a One Week Plan to make you backslide. If that doesn’t work…

He has a One Month Plan to make you backslide. If that doesn’t work…

He has a One Year Plan to make you backslide. If that doesn’t work…

He has a Five Year Plan to make you backslide. If that doesn’t work…

He has a Ten Year Plan to make you backslide. If that doesn’t work…

He has a Twenty Year Plan to make you backslide. If that doesn’t work…

He has a Life Time Plan to make you backslide.”

                                                      

To Every Teenager.

Young Man? He’s got a plan to find you a sinner girlfriend.

Young Lady? He’s got a plan to find you a sinner boyfriend.

He’s got a plan to find you a spouse that will destroy you spiritually.

He’s got a plan to make you dress like the world.

 

He’s got a plan to make you live like the world.

He’s got a plan to involve you in worldly sports and amusements.

He’s got a plan to surround you with improper music.

He’s got a plan to find you a job that will keep you out of church.

 

He’s got a plan to make you sink lower than you ever dreamed you would.

He’s got a plan to get you addicted to drugs, nicotine and alcohol.

He’s got a plan to load you down with condemnation.

He’s got a plan to overwhelm you with shame.

 

He’s got a plan to connect you to sinful people.

He’s got a plan to introduce you to porn.

He’s got a plan to make you lose your purity.

He’s got a plan to make you think your best friends are in the world, and not in the church.

 

The Devil’s Got A Plan For You That Just Might Work …If You Let It.

 

To Every Child Of God.

The devil plans to make you feel offended and hurt.

The devil plans to make you jealous.

The devil plans to stop your prayer life.

The devil plans to defeat you.

 

The devil plans to make you fail.

The devil plans to make you sell your birthright.

The devil plans to make you feel there is no hope for you.

The devil plans to make you throw this Holy Ghost experience away.

 

The devil plans to make you want to quit church.

The devil plans to put you at odds with the pastor.

The devil plans to make you bitter.

The devil plans to take you as low as you will let him.

 

The devil plans to make you waste every talent God has given you.

The devil plans to curse your life.

The devil plans to make you swallow a camel and strain a gnat.

The devil plans to make you find the mote in others eyes and ignore the beam in your own.

 

The devil plans to make you look for hypocrites in the church.

The devil plans to let you be disappointed by men’s failures.

The devil plans to make you quit paying tithes.

The devil plans to make you offended.

 

The devil plans to make you miss church.

The devil plans to make you withdraw from godly fellowship.

The devil plans to make you a bitter person.

The devil plans to make you hate holiness.

 

The devil plans to make you mess up your marriage.

The devil plans to make you stop worshiping.

The devil plans to make you dislike preachers who tell you the truth.

The devil plans to make you resist all Holiness preaching.

 

The devil plans to make you consider doctrine a boring subject.

The devil plans to make Hollywood more attractive to you than the church.

The devil plans to make you immoral.

The devil plans to make you justify your wrong living.

 

The devil plans to make you love making money more than you love church.

The devil plans to make you love pleasure, more than you love God.

The devil plans to make you question God.

The devil plans to make you mad when the preacher says anything that challenges what your family or friends are doing.

 

The devil plans to make you lukewarm.

The devil plans to make you happy with dead worship services.

The devil plans to let you feel comfortable in quiet prayer rooms.

The devil plans to make you talk against the pastor in front of your children.

 

The devil plans to make you question every standard.

The devil plans to make you comfortable trying to get by just doing the minimum.

The devil plans to make you part of the spirit of Laodicea.

The devil plans to make you feel uncomfortable with other cultures in your congregation.

 

The devil plans to make you prejudiced.

The devil plans to make you only knock on doors in certain areas of town during outreach.

The devil plans to make you feel your culture is superior to all others.

The devil plans to destroy unity in your church.

 

The Devil’s Got A Plan For You That Just Might Work …If You Let It.

 

To Every Preacher.

He plans to mess you up with false doctrine.

He plans to destroy your ministry with women.

He plans to ruin you with improper use of money.

He plans to sidetrack your ministry in search of popularity.

 

He plans to make you preach that the new ways are better than the old paths.

He plans to make to you compromise.

He plans to make you quiet about sin.

He plans to make you afraid to preach holiness and separation from the world.

 

He plans to make you a hireling.

He plans to make you preach only pop-psychology sermons.

He plans to make you think you are right and everyone else is wrong.

He plans to make you focus on pleasing men and not God.

 

The Devil’s Got A Plan For You That Just Might Work …If You Let It.

 

To Every Seeker.

The devil plans to blind your eyes and keep you from recognizing truth.

The devil plans to make you think all churches lead to heaven.

The devil plans to make you think the day of Pentecost experience is not for you.

The devil plans to make you resist baptism in Jesus name.

 

The devil plans to make you justify your lifestyle.

The devil plans to make you think that God’s love accepts of your lifestyle.

The devil plans to make you believe false doctrines rather than the truth.

The devil plans to make you believe there is a trinity rather than just one God.

 

The devil plans to try to make you rebel against truth.

The devil plans to make you believe that God is only a God of mercy.

The devil plans to make you think God only looks on the heart and completely ignores the outside.

The devil plans to let you see what he thinks is the worst in every good church you attend.

 

The Devil’s Got A Plan For You That Just Might Work …If You Let It.

 

To Every Backslider

Are you even looking at what the devil is doing to your life?

The prodigal son did.

That’s when he came to himself.

 

That’s when he got up and walked away from sin’s pigpen.

That’s when he came back home and repented to his father.

That’s when the father ran to meet him and forgave him.

He’s your father too and He’s waiting for you to come to yourself!

 

So, What Are You Waiting For?

 

Luke 15:17 And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!

Luke 15:18 I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee,

Luke 15:19 And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy hired servants.

Luke 15:20 And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.

Luke 15:21 And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son.

Luke 15:22 But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet:

Luke 15:23 And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry:

Luke 15:24 For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.

 

The Devil’s Got A Plan For You That Just Might Work …If You Let It.

Don’t Let It!

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

December 18, 2015 at 12:29 am

“Who Are You To Judge Me?”

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“Who Are You To Judge Me?”

How many times have we heard someone say that, whether it was directed to us or to someone else? It’s easy for most of us to get offended when others express disapproval of our actions.

gavelBy nature, most of us are very private. We resent outsiders intruding uninvited into our personal lives. We automatically throw up a defensive barrier. Somewhere in all of us there is a storage room that houses cryptic phrases designed for rebuttal and justification. We quickly grab one and use it with the hopes of silencing our accuser. Sometimes, it works.

Most church members and ex-church member alike consider the act of judging a grievous fault. So, since most of us have been judged at one time or another, let us look at the subject of judging others.

As citizens, we are used to being judged every day on our skills, behavior, and performance.

Judgment Is Common In Every Day Society

  • Television shows, such as American Idol, judge contestants on their ability to sing and perform.
  • At the County Fair, someone will judge which pie is the best.
  • There are judges at dog shows, and the dollar value of someone’s beloved pet may be at their mercy.
  • When a prospective new driver turns 16 years old, his or her driving ability is judged. Someone must determine if they should be issued a driver’s license.
  • To be promoted to the next grade and even graduate, a teacher must determine the student’s academic ability.
  • To become a licensed minister in an organization. An applicant’s worthiness is determined when he appears before a licensing board.
  • Every new pastor that is voted on by the church has his qualifications judged by the congregation’s yes or no vote. The same holds true for politicians.
  • The Bank Officer judges the applicants credit rating and payment history before loaning any money.
  • The Miss America beauty pageant uses Judges to determine who should represent the U.S.A.
  • There are multitudes of judges for every Olympic event.
  • The gardener judges whether or not the tree’s branches need pruned, or if the tomatoes need watered.
  • Someone will be a judge over who gets custody of the child, and who gets what, in the divorce settlement.
  • The Traffic Cop judges whether or not you should be pulled over and cited.
  • Every employee knows the meaning of a “Performance Review.” Someone must sit on the other side of the desk and judge the employees worthiness.
  • Actually, everyone that wants the bragging rights of being the best, the fastest, or the most gifted, must first meet the judge.

We seem to be comfortable with the idea of being judged according to our fleshly activities. We understand that no one receives approval without a judgment of some kind. However, it’s man’s judgment of our spiritual pursuits, or lack thereof, that brings the fire into our reactions.

 

Webster Defines The Word, “Judge” As:

Judge

1: to form an opinion about through careful weighing of evidence and testing of premises.

 

You’re Sick And Tired Of Others Judging You? I Understand. Let’s Look At The Subject Of Judging In The Bible.

Is it true that Christians are told not to judge? The surprise answer is no. In fact, according to Scripture those who do not judge are more likely to be led astray by false doctrines and are less than effective witnesses for Jesus Christ.

 

Most People Who Cite The Lord’s “Command” Not To Judge, Use Following Quotation:

Matthew 7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.

Matthew 7:2 For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.

Matthew 7:3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?

Matthew 7:4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye?

Matthew 7:5 Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.

 

To Whom Were These Words Spoken?

This whole passage is addressed to the religious hypocrites of the day. Jesus warned these self-righteous people who criticized others, but were guilty of the same things… or worse.

 

You’re Sick And Tired Of Others Judging You? As Much As Our Flesh Doesn’t Like It, Church Members Must Make Judgments.

Matthew 7:15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

Matthew 7:16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?

1 John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

  • False prophets are to be recognized (judged) by their fruits.

Should Christians Judge Each Other? Absolutely!

The Lord is pleased with those that judge righteously.

John 7:24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.

 

Some Lukewarm Church Members Feel That A Preacher Should Not Be Their Judge.

I would point them the Lord’s instruction to the Priest Joshua.

Zechariah 3:7 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; If thou wilt walk in my ways, and if thou wilt keep my charge, then thou shalt also judge my house, and shalt also keep my courts, and I will give thee places to walk among these that stand by.

 

Remember John The Baptist saying:

Matthew 3:7 But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?

Mark 6:17 For Herod himself had sent forth and laid hold upon John, and bound him in prison for Herodias’ sake, his brother Philip’s wife: for he had married her.

Mark 6:18 For John had said unto Herod, It is not lawful for thee to have thy brother’s wife.

  • John had guts enough to tell King Herod that he was wrong, that he was living with his brother’s wife. Herod had John thrown in prison and finally beheaded. John was not afraid to make a righteous judgment.

The Prophet Nathan Looked King David In The Eye And Judged Him.

2 Samuel 12:7 And Nathan said to David, Thou art the man. Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I anointed thee king over Israel, and I delivered thee out of the hand of Saul;

 

There Has Always Been Resentment In The Congregation Against Messages That Judge.

Isaiah 30:10 Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits:

  • Even in the days of Isaiah, men wanted to be left alone by the man of God. They only were willing to hear smooth preaching. Not much has changed. They wanted to do what ever their conscience allowed them to do.

Judges 21:25 In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

  • Without accountability, even the people of God sink to this level. The shocking news for our flesh is that what is right in our eyes may not be right in God’s eyes. We all need help. We just need it in different areas.

 

What About Discernment Of Spirits?

1 Corinthians 12:10 To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues:

  • This is a gift that God provided for His body, whereby Holy Ghost filled people may be able to determine what spirit another is manifesting. In a way, it’s like being able to see what’s on the inside of another person.

 

Try The Spirits. (Judge Them)

1 John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.

 

Samuel

The Prophet learned about judging spirits the hard way. He found out quickly that God looked not only on the outside, like humans, but He looked especially at the heart.

1 Samuel 16:7 But the LORD said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.

(Note: They that are spiritually wayward love to justify their carnal and maybe even sinful outward appearance by saying that God looks on the heart. (As if that were the only place He looks.) This passage strongly makes the point that God did not even like what he saw on the inside. Maybe the self-righteous should not use this verse as their defense.)

 

If You Don’t Want Anyone Judging You, Be Glad You Weren’t There When The Apostle Paul Preached.

 

Paul Judged Situations Publically Without Being Present.

  • Case 1. Immorality

1 Corinthians 5:3 For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed,

1 Corinthians 5:4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,

1 Corinthians 5:5 To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

1 Corinthians 5:11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.

(Called a…)

  • That person’s lifestyle resulted in the church judging them guilty and calling them by the name of their sin.

1 Corinthians 5:12 For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within?

1 Corinthians 5:13 But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.

  • Case 2. Church Factions During The Lord’s Supper

1 Corinthians 11:17 Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse.

1 Corinthians 11:18 For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.

  • Paul Openly Judged Sensitive Situations.

 

Judgment Is Required Of All Spiritual People.

1 Corinthians 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

1 Corinthians 2:15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.

(The Message) 1 Corinthians 2:15 Spiritually alive, we have access to everything God’s Spirit is doing, and can’t be judged by unspiritual critics.

 

Spirit Filled Saints Are To Judge All Things.

Godly Spirit-filled saints are required to judge all things. Judge spirits? Yes! Judge things as well? Absolutely!

 

We Are To Judge All Things By God’s Standard Of Judgment. Things Such As:

  • Life Situations
  • Events
  • Relationships
  • Friendships
  • Music
  • Internet Activities
  • Entertainment
  • Hollywood Presentations
  • Sports
  • False Doctrines
  • Styles of Dress
  • Compromise
  • Immodesty

Just To Name A Few

 

(Note: EVERYONE that I have seen who re-evaluated their Holiness Standards or Convictions has not grown closer to God or resembled the Old-time Pentecostal lifestyle, but rather moved closer to looking and acting like the present world.)

 

The Apostles Judged A Situation Correctly And The Holy Ghost Confirmed It.

Acts 15:28 For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things;

Paul Wasn’t Afraid To Have His Brethren Weigh His Words.

1 Corinthians 10:14 Wherefore, my dearly beloved, flee from idolatry.

1 Corinthians 10:15 I speak as to wise men; judge ye what I say.

 

You Dislike Being Judged? I Understand, But Even Prophets Are Subject To Being Judged.

Prophets Judge Other Prophets.

A Prophet’s reward is not money or fame. It is simply that his prophecy comes true. If the prophecy does not come true he is, by all standards of measurement, a false prophet.

1 Corinthians 14:29 Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge.

The Pastor Must Make Judgment Calls.

Some situations a Pastor has to deal with are not mentioned specifically by name in the Bible. So, he must make a judgment call, or a ruling. Hence, they that make good rulings are worthy of double honor.

1 Timothy 5:17 Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine.

There’s No Doubt A Good Reason Why Some Make A Loud Noise About Not Wanting Anyone To Judge Them.

Scenario 1

Maybe They Are In Rebellion And Don’t Want To Change.

  • Because they are not doing right, and they do not want anyone reminding them.
  • They know what they have been taught.
  • They remember how they used to live.
  • They chose to ignore the Word of God and the Pastor.

Scenario 2

Maybe God Has Turned Them Over To A Delusion.

  • They feel they are right and will debate you tirelessly in their attempt to justify themselves.
  • They feel saved and content even though they have never been farther away from Truth.
  • They wouldn’t love Truth, so God handpicked their delusion and gave them something they would love. Error.

Scenario 3

A Humble Heart Will Repent When Judged And Correct The Error.

2 Timothy 2:25 In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;

Preacher… Preach The Word. It Is God’s Plumb Line.

  • Preach Without Fear or Favor.
  • Be Not Afraid Of Their Faces.
  • You Must Answer To God For What You Preached And Didn’t Preach.
  • Preach It Even if It Affects Your Friends Or Family.
  • Preach it Because It Is Truth.

 

Correction Must Be Given When The Actions Of A Saint Are Judged To Be Wrong.

1 Timothy 5:20 Them that sin rebuke before all, that others also may fear.

Luke 17:3 Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him.

2 Timothy 4:2 Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine.

Titus 1:13 This witness is true. Wherefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith;

Titus 2:15 These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.

 

If We Willingly Receive Correction and Instruction, We Show Evidence Of Being God’s Son.

Hebrews 12:5 … My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:

Hebrews 12:6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

Hebrews 12:7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?

Hebrews 12:8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.

Hebrews 12:9 Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh which corrected us, and we gave them reverence: shall we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live?

 

If You’re Still Sick And Tired Of Others Judging You…

  • How Then Can Anyone Help You?
  • You Don’t Want A Pastor.
  • You Don’t Even Want A True Friend.
  • You Choose To Do What You Want.
  • No One Can Be Helped Without First Being Judged To Be In Need Of Help.
  • Please Don’t Put Up A Wall Of Defense Any More When Your Life Is Judged To Be Not Pleasing Unto God.

 

Who Are You To Judge Me?

  • A Tender Hearted Person Would Never Speak Those Words.
  • Have You Become Unteachable?
  • Are You Past Help?
  • Have You Become Hard Hearted?
  • Do You Want A Tender Heart?
  • Do You Want To Be Saved?
  • Then Start By Humbling Yourself And Submitting To God’s Word.

The Saddest Sight Of All Is The Pacing Of The Caged Lion.

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The Saddest Sight Of All Is The Pacing Of The Caged Lion.

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The Lion The King Of The Jungle!

Lions, they are no doubt one of the most magnificent of creatures. Even the Lord referred to Himself as the Lion of the Tribe of Judah. The lion is an animal so powerfully built, so capable, so beautiful, and awe-inspiring that it was chosen to be a type of the Messiah.

Some even travel on safari trips into the African jungle or veld to view this monarch of all animals in its natural environment. The photos such travelers bring home capture the heart of its viewers.

One of the saddest things to see is this noble creature pacing the floor inside of a steel cage. Back and forth, back and forth it goes looking for a way out. Occasionally it may stop to bite the bars and roar out of frustration.

  • It sees others free outside the cage and wants to be free too.
  • It wasn’t born to live on concrete.
  • It wasn’t created to live in a steel showcase.
  • It’s potential and strengths are forever confined.
  • Its power will never really be known.
  • It’s only a shadow of what could have been.
  • It’s a caged lion.
  • It’s a pacing caged lion wanting to be free.
  • It’s a pacing caged lion looking for a way out.
  • It’s a pacing caged lion.

 

The Caged Lion

No one has to go to the City Zoo to see the pacing of caged lions. They can be seen in many of our homes and most of our churches!

They are beautiful creatures of God with amazing potentials and abilities. Yet they live a life of meager existence. They watch others enjoy freedoms in God that they cannot. They are limited to what lengths they can even go because of their steel bars.

  • People come by and look at them.
  • Some point and make comments to their friends.
  • Some take pictures of what they see.
  • The similarities to the caged lion are there for all to see.
  • The spirit of unrest.
  • The pacing of the caged creature back and forth, back and forth.
  • The frustration.
  • The caged look.
  • The biting at the bars.
  • The occasional roars from the soul.

Every one is handicapped to help. Multitudes read the warning signs and keep their distance. They look and then they move on.

 

What Put The Lion In This Cage? Who Put The Lion In This Cage?

Were they captured in a snare or trap? Were they injured, found and then brought here? Did the lion walk inside willingly and let himself be lock in the cage? Is this cage real or imagined? What happened? No one really knows the whole story. All that is known is that something happened.

  • Was it Condemnation?
  • Was it a Personal Failure?
  • Was it an Addiction?
  • Was it an Attitude?
  • Was it Rebellion?
  • Was it a Rumor?
  • Was it an Indiscretion?
  • Was it Disobedience?
  • Was it Bitterness?
  • Was it a Past Injury?

 

Did Sin Make The Bars Or Were The Bars Man Made?

How Did This Happen?

Every day, everywhere, caged lions are seen. I watch them in churches. The potential for better things is obvious to all who see them. But their actions aren’t much different from the caged king of the jungle.

I watch them pace and hear them roar. They are still caged and confined by the events of the present and the past. They are held captive by things real and things imagined. They barely exist.

I watch them try to worship and they cannot. They try to pray and it sounds empty and hollow, but mostly just quiet. Occasionally they will roar out loud, but their roar does not threaten Hell.

They smile but they are not happy. They raise their hands, but never seem to touch Heaven. They keep their head down in despair while praying. They never feel worthy.

If they are called on to testify. It is a quick, low-voiced attempt that may last only ten seconds or so.

  • They watch others worship and shout, but they don’t.
  • They watch others sing from the soul, but they are still in a cage.
  • They watch others pray with liberty and freedom, but their prayers are caged.
  • They see their friends be used of God, while they pace back and forth.
  • The bars keep them from doing what they really want to do.
  • The bars keep them from being what they really want to be.

 

If I Could Talk To The Spiritually Caged And Pacing Lion…

I Would Share Four Passages Of Scripture To Give Them Hope.

God NEVER meant for His children to live a cage. He never meant for us to exist just pacing behind bars, a spectacle for all to see. A could-have-been. No matter who made the bars, or how the lion got inside, there is a way out for all.

 

1. Every One Has A Past. Understand That God Doesn’t Want Your Past To Be Your Future Or Hold You Captive. No Matter What You Have Done Or What You Have Been, There Is Hope.

1Co 6:9 Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind,

1Co 6:10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.

1Co 6:11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

 

2. Paul Even Felt Caged By His Past.

(Roman law allowed the dead victim to be tied to the back of the murderer. In it’s decaying state, the worms slowly ate into and killed the killer. Paul felt his past tied to his back, eating away at him. Condemnation is a killer. So he wrote:

Rom 7:24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?

But Something Happened To Paul Between Chapter Seven And Chapter Eight. When He Broke Free He Wrote Anew…

Rom 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

 

3. Jesus Came Down To Earth To Unlock Your Cage

Isa 61:1 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;

 

Dear Child Of God!

Do not allow your self, your sin, or your past to keep you in a cage. Believe in God’s Mercy, His Grace, and His Forgiveness. Accept It.

 

  • The Door Is Unlocked And Open.
  • The Cage No Longer Can Hold You Unless You Let It.
  • Freedom Is God’s Gift To You.

 

4. The Door Is Open. God Didn’t Save You To Keep You In A Cage.

Rev 3:8 I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it:

 

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Written by Martyn Ballestero

March 25, 2015 at 4:38 pm

You Can “C” Your Way Through This!

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You Can “C” Your Way Through This!

You can get through this trial. You can survive your journey through the valley. There is a way to come through your dry spell. It’s not all that hard. You just have to “C” your way through.

(A few days ago Bro. Ken Bow shared some of these major points with his church while I was there. I took liberties and expounded and added to them. Thanks Elder.)

1. Consistency

Be Consistent.

Like Job, be consistent. Especially during your time of testing never falter in your walk with God.

Job 13:15 Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him: but I will maintain mine own ways before him.

What do you do when things are going wrong?

  • You keep on praying
  • You keep on singing
  • You keep on coming to church
  • You keep on praising the Lord
  • You keep on paying your tithes
  • You keep on doing what you know to do.

Be Consistent, be faithful. Never allow yourself to be up and down in and out

If You Are Consistent, You Can “C” Your Way Through This!

 

2. Commitment

Make A Complete Commitment To God.

Make a Commitment. Then keep your promises. Are you a child of God or not? If so, then commit yourself to living in a manner pleasing to Him and not yourself.

Make the commitment now. Don’t delay.

 

Psalm 57:7 My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give praise.

  • Make a commitment to a better prayer life.
  • Make a commitment to be a worshipper.
  • Make a commitment to holy living.
  • Make a commitment to abstain from all ungodliness and impurity.
  • Make a commitment to be a faithful tither and a giver.
  • Make a commitment to be faithful to every service.
  • Make a commitment to visit the prayer room before the church service.

When you make your commitment to Him, like the psalmist did and get your heart fixed, you will feel like singing too!

If You Are Willing To Make The Commitment, You Can “C” Your Way Through This!

 

3. Conviction

You’ve Got To Get Some Convictions For Yourself.

You can’t just live off of the preacher’s convictions or your Grandma’s. However wonderful theirs are, you have to get it in you.

Don’t expect to survive your storm in a boat with no rudder. Determine now your direction and don’t change. Don’t even hang around those who you know would give you bad advice and mislead you in a wrong direction.

 

Moses Had Conviction.

Hebrews 11:24 By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter;

Hebrews 11:25 Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;

Hebrews 11:26 Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward.

 

The Three Hebrew Children Had Conviction.

Daniel 3:6 Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed–nego, answered and said to the king, O Nebuchadnezzar, we are not careful to answer thee in this matter.

Daniel 3:17 If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king.

Daniel 3:18 But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.

If You Get Strong Convictions About Right And Wrong And Separating Yourself From The World, You Can “C” Your Way Through This!

 

4. Confess

Be Quick To Repent And Search Your Heart.

The first step in finding God’s approval and favor on your life is being willing to admit all of your failures and ask His forgiveness. It’s important to repent often and sincerely. David Did.

David’s Sins Were Grievous, But He Was Quick To Repent.

As a man David was flawed in several ways. Yet somehow he was known as a man after God’s own heart. How could that happen? How is it that Saul messed up once and God cut him off and yet David has shameful moments more than once and God is merciful to him?

I believe it’s because David was quick to repent. David was willing to admit he was wrong and ask for mercy. He desired to be clean.

Psalm 51:2 Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin.

Psalm 51:3 For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me.

Psalm 51:4 Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: …

Seven people in the Bible said, “I have sinned.” Only two of them found forgiveness: David and the Prodigal Son. These two said, “I have sinned against thee oh Lord.” All sin is against God. Recognize that your sin affects more than just you. Sin is against God.

Be quick to acknowledge your wrong before God. He will forgive you.

If You Will Be Quick To Confess When You Need To, You Can “C” Your Way Through This!

 

5. Carefulness

Be Careful Around Sin.

Don’t play games with your soul. Please don’t throw away what God has given you. This generation lives too carelessly. Even some Pentecostals who know better are somehow enticed to push the limits of separation from the world and see how close they can get and still feel saved. Why even think like that? The coming of the Lord is so close. This is no time to be careless with your eternity. You are in the world but not of the world.

Ephesians 5:15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,

There’s That “C” Word Again!

Quit trying to see how much of the world you can have and still be a member of the church. That is foolish thinking. Remember this old Sunday School memory verse?

1 John 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

Ask God to direct all of your steps and only lead you in paths pleasing to him.

Be Careful In Your Daily Life,

  • Your speech,
  • Your conduct,
  • Your entertainment,
  • Your hobbies
  • Your friends
  • Your thoughts

If You’re Careful, You Can “C” Your Way Through This!

 

6. Camaraderie

Godly Camaraderie With The Saints Is Key To Your Spiritual Welfare And Survival.

I cannot begin to tell you of he great blessing, strength and comfort godly fellowship. It grieves me hear you tell me that they have no friends in the church. That your best friends are in the world.

If that is true, it will only be a matter of time before you are where they are. God places us in His family. The people of the Lord should even be closer to you than your unchurched family. Included along with doctrine and prayers in one verse is this key to your survival.

Acts 2:42 And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

Your fellowship with God’s people is important and key to your spiritual survival. Minimize your influences from those that refuse to walk in all the light of truth. No matter how nice they are.

Amos 3:3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed?

If two people have different destinations then it will just be a matter of time before there is a parting of the ways. If not, then one of them will go where they really didn’t want to go because they refused to break company with their friend who was going in the wrong direction.

If You Surround Yourself With God’s People, You Can “C” Your Way Through This!

 

7. Consecrate

Consecrate Yourself To God; Surrender Your Will.

When you consecrate yourself to God. You then pledge to do whatever it takes to please Him. Consecration is about submission to His will and His way. It is saying, not my will but Thine be done.

Don’t wait for someone to tell that it’s time to draw closer to God. You already know. So please don’t delay. If you will draw closer to God, He will draw closer to you. That is His promise.

Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

Romans 12:2 And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

  • Give Him you life.
  • Give Him your all.
  • Give Him your heart.
  • Give Him your willingness.
  • Give Him your obedience.
  • Give Him your love.

If You Consecrate, You Can “C” Your Way Through This!

 

 

 

 

Written by Martyn Ballestero

February 7, 2015 at 1:35 pm

Posted in Christian Living, Overcoming

Tagged with