Emotional and Mental Health – The Center of God’s Will

Most people are either on top of the world right now, or buried under the burden of frustration, discouragement and disappointment. Jesus Christ makes the difference in both of these instances.

 

Even if someone is totally successful and right where their goals led them over the last few years, they may be as unsatisfied and unfulfilled as they were when they started their journey to the top.

 

Many people give up at this point and opt for a simpler life, downgrading their salary and vocational expectations for a quieter and less stressful lifestyle.

 

For Believers, living in the center of God’s will is the only place where we find complete contentment. He may continue to lead us in the vein in which we started – adding an altered mindset, or He may change our circumstances completely.

 

It all hinges on finding and fulfilling God’s directives for our life (Proverbs 3:5-6). We completely surrender our will and plans to Him, and live by the direction of His Holy Spirit instead of our human desires.

 

Even if God leads us through some valley or trial, we find His purpose for us in it. We can witness of His mercy and grace to a fellow traveler, learn a needed lesson, view His provision for us in a whole new light, and grow in our intimacy with Him through it all (1 Peter 4:12).

 

We learn to depend on His Body during our trials, to grow closer to our spouse, family and church family; our faith grows in the fact that we can count on certain people to help us and that God never fails us.

 

Prayer:

Father God, some trials devastate us to our very core. They shake the foundations of our trust in You and our faith in humanity. Yet, we often survive these unhappy circumstances with enduring blessings that we never would have experienced without them. Remind us to focus on You in the good times and the bad, giving You praise for each instance as we focus on You – You never change (Hebrews 13:8).

 

Help us to see life from Your viewpoint rather than our limited, human perspective. Spur us to remain faithful to You in spite of them. We look at life now through Your unfailing love and comfort, according to Your promises and provision (Psalm 119:75-76). Demonstrate Yourself to us in all of Your power and majesty.

 

Thought for the Day:

Prayerfully surrendering our trials to God allows us to gain His perspective on what seems like a turn of bad luck; we ask God’s Spirit for His wisdom and direction; and we come through these times of testing with a deeper faith and stronger spiritual, mental and emotional fortitude than we ever experienced in our life in the past.

 

 

Abiding in Christ

Salvation comes in stages. If we happily camp around the salvation of our spirit, we miss the glory of the sanctification of our soul. One day we will also experience the glorification of our body when Christ appears for His Saints (1 Thessalonians 5:23).

 

Once we realize that the divinity of Christ and all of the power of the complete triune Godhead live within every Born Again Believer, a new enthusiasm produces constant praise from our lips to God’s ears (2 Peter 1:3).

 

We no longer view our self as a grubby worm inching around in the world of selfishness and sin. Instead, we see our self as beautiful butterflies soaring in the Heavenly, spiritual realm of life.

 

God calls His elect and then reveals Himself to and in us. He has a purpose for each of our lives (Ephesians 1:11). He loves us with His abundant, unfading and everlasting love (Psalm 25:6; Jeremiah 31:3).

 

We are totally dependent upon Jesus for our direction, health and provision moment by moment throughout the day (Ephesians 1:9; Philippians 2:12-13). Through our connection to the Vine, the life of Christ flows through us by His Spirit and we produce much fruit for the Kingdom of God (John 15:8).

 

Through our union with Christ, we shed the shackles of our sin nature and submit to the dealings and leadings of God’s Spirit in our life (1 Corinthians 1:30). As branches in the Vine of Christ, we experience God as our husbandman.

 

He prunes the flesh from us so more spiritual fruit may grow (John 15:1, 5). We walk out of the bondage to carnality and into the glorious freedom of the sons of God (Romans 8:21).

 

Jesus is our center and God is the focus of our life. We seek to do His will in our job, community, church, extended family and home. If we walk in the darkness of self and sin, we stumble and fail in all of our attempts (John 11:10).

 

As we walk in the light of Christ, we find fulfillment in living out His will for our life (1 John 1:7). God’s wisdom, grace, love and supernatural abilities reside within us in Jesus Christ and are always available to meet all of our needs and to walk in God’s will for us (1 Corinthians 1:30).

 

Prayer:

Father God, as we abide in You throughout the day, Your wisdom, grace, love and peace manifest in our life and out into the world around us. As we abide in You, You provide us with a dedicated life full of the wisdom, strength and Godly conviction, which we need to further Your Kingdom in our world.

 

We look forward to the day when we can also walk in Your power, so You can make a true difference in others through our life. As we make every effort to walk in peace with You, You renew our soul and make us blameless and spotless at Your coming (2 Peter 3:14). Our perseverance in our walk with You, guarantees that we will not stop short of Your glorious riches, which You prepared for us before time began (Romans 9:23).

 

 

Thought for the Day:

Undistracted devotion to God allows us to tap into all of His power and majesty in order to live our life as Elijah, Moses and Enoch did; and we will steadily walk into complete maturity in Christ. – James 1:4

 

 

God Provides

When someone asks me how I feel, most of the time I am going to say, “GREAT!” I am well passed the prime of my life, I have flat feet and I have a spine that is so distorted that my chiro does not understand how I am living such a normal life.

 

I have to pace myself as I age, but I am like the energizer bunny. It is not due to a type A personality, because I do not have one! I am a melancholy and an introvert from birth.

 

However, I have learned that there is a seed for a miracle in each trial. For instance, while I learned to survive a divorce by my husband of 22 years, God revealed Satan’s lies that I was alone and abandoned. He taught me His truth that He is my husband and that He alone is my strength and my provider (Isaiah 54:5; Psalm 54:4).

 

Also, I was t-boned in a car accident in 1995 that broke 11 ribs on my left side, punctured my left lung, gave me a concussion, filled the left side of my face with glass and broke the pinky finger on my left hand.

 

Yet, I was discharged from the hospital the next day after the accident. I was back to work as a full-charge bookkeeper in one week, and I never took one pain pill. God provided for me above all expectations, amazing my doctors and everyone who suffered through even one broken rib.

 

The Spirit of God continually provides me with supernatural strength and wisdom to combat any physical impairments, and His joy and peace pervade every facet of my life.

 

Over the years, God taught me to live in the Spirit and not to dwell on the temporal aspects of life for very long, because every instance of tribulation is a new adventure in Christ and a spiritual phenomenon just waiting to happen.

 

Prayer:

Father God, I prefer peace, order and stability, but life has a way of throwing us curve balls when we least expect it. Even so, You always fill me with Your joy, which is my strength through any tribulation (Nehemiah 8:10). I despise change, but You taught me to handle it with flexibility and joyful acceptance as I witness Your provision for me.

 

I love the life You gave to me. I enjoy my family and I adore the husband You provided, because he is so adorable! I love people and I never meet a stranger. I enjoy my opportunities of service to You as a wife, mother, grandmother, homemaker, and in the ministry of Your Army as a spiritual mentor and a Pastor’s wife. I give You all the praise, which is due to Your name.

 

Thought for the Day:

God leads us and guides us each moment of the day; and He keeps us on His straight and narrow path, because of the spiritual enemies of His Kingdom. – Psalm 23:3, 5

 

Saving Grace

 

People today are so turned off by legalism that they pervert the truth that we are forgiven of all sins – past, current and future – and allow sin to grow in their life. They feel no remorse for breaking God’s heart.

 

They sit around drinking beer, wine, cocktails and even hard liquor discussing the Word of God. They smoke their cigars and pipes in church fellowships, and they allow their language to digress to that of a drunken sailor.

 

They feel this is spiritual, because they are breaking the bonds of legalism. They claim that the current church emasculates men and say that the “letter of the law”, in the current evangelical church, prevents them from having a living relationship with our mighty God.

 

I agree that living only according to the “logos” – written Word of God – can mask the sinful desires within a person’s heart. I also agree that a ‘rhema’ – the living Word – relationship is the most important aspect of our salvation.

 

Legalism does kill the spirit, and relationship is more important than religion. However, I also believe that when we actually see the living Jesus, we shrink from living with a license to sin (1 John 2:15).

 

We forsake alcoholism, pornography, gay pride, abortion, adultery and all the other sins, which humanity explains away in our current Laodicean society.

 

The teachings of today’s so-called pastors mirror the gospel taught by the Nicolaitans, whom God hated (Revelations 2:6). These modern men are purporting old age deception cloaked in New Age Lies.

 

Add this to the gnostic element creeping back into the church through Satanic influence and deception, and the post-modern church has a stench that makes God want to vomit (2 Corinthians 11:4; Revelation 3:16).

 

Whatever happened to the holiness that Jesus exemplified for us in His life, calling us to emulate Him in our every thought, word and deed? His Spirit transforms us with the mind of Christ and fills us with His fruit to replace our carnality (Romans 12:2; Galatians 5:15-25).

 

Prayer:

Father God, You make it very clear in the Old and New Testament that You are a Holy God. You call Your Saints to walk in holiness and not to fulfill the lusts of the flesh (Galatians 5:15-25). You are the righteous judge, and sin grieves Your Spirit (Ephesians 4:30). We do not abound in sin, so that Your grace may abound in us (Romans 6:1).

 

Sin, in any form, is destructive and You protect us from its destruction by Your commandments and directives. If we compromise Your Word, we compromise our own success and blessings. We realize that our sin is already paid for by Christ’s crucifixion, but this fact drives us to a dedication to Your Word, rather than to participate in crucifying Jesus afresh by our lackadaisical dabbling in sin without honest remorse (Hebrews 6:4- 6).

 

Thought for the Day:

Modern “reformed” preachers reject solid Biblical principles and replace them with lifeless, liberal mysticism; they ignore the draw of God’s Spirit to walk in holiness just as our Father God is holy. He is the same yesterday, today and forever.

– Hebrews 4:12, 13:8; 1 Peter 1:16.

Total Surrender to God’s Spirit

The Bible declares that if anyone claims to be a Christian, yet lives a worldly life, they are liars (Romans 8:9; 1 John 2:4). Even demons believe and tremble at the name of Christ (James 2:19).

 

We might believe in God. We might be convicted of our sin. We might like going to church and listening to religious music. However, we are not Born Again.

 

If we are Born Again, we live by the Spirit of God in everything we think, say and do (Romans 8:9).  There is continual intimacy with the living Lord and growth in our character and actions, which are led by His Spirit.

 

Our humanity is already dead with Christ in God (Colossians 3:3). God is love and if He abides in us completely, we have no need to strive to show His love to others (1 John 4:8). His love fills us and overflows into the lives of everyone we meet.

 

Christ in us expresses the fruit of the Spirit in and through us. We are a vessel containing the living Lord of the universe with all the dynamic power of the triune God resident within us (Ephesians 3:20).

 

We learn greater sensitivity to God’s leading. Our Heavenly Father is always faithful to lead us in His perfect will. However, we must be willing to spend all day praying without ceasing, worshiping at His feet, communing with Him in prayer, and waiting patiently for His direction.

 

Prayer:

Father God, the only person that may call him/her self a Believer is one with a vital and vibrant intimate union with You. If we live according to our own plans for the day, and attempt to work You into them, we gravely miss many opportunities to allow You to work Your plans through us.

 

Remind us to converse with You moment by moment throughout the day as You orchestrate the adventures in our life to fulfill Your purpose in and through us. We hunger and thirst for a deeper relationship with You, so that we may walk in the fullness of Your Spirit and to enable You to accomplish Your will on the earth through us.

 

Thought for the Day:

Total submission to the control of Christ in our daily life is the next step after our salvation; so let’s completely surrender to the work of God’s Spirit. – 1 Corinthians 15:22-28

 

Union with Christ – Transformation

Prior to coming to Christ, we were shackled with our old soul nature and a spirit dead in sin. We were crippled by having a body that started dying the day we were born, a dysfunctional soul, and a dead spirit to cart around with us as we danced through life to the tune of lies from Satanic spirits (1 John 5:19).

 

We did our best to survive and thrive. Yet, even if we are successful in the eyes of the world, we still lack the basic connection with the God of the Universe, who took on the form of a human being in order to bring us new life.

 

At times, even God’s servants go off on our own tangents and smear God’s name, purposes and direction for our life. We work in God’s name, but do not follow God’s will, which defames His name among the nations – the exact opposite of God’s plan for us (Ephesians 2:7-3:19).

 

When we come to Christ, He forgives our sin, rejuvenates our body, gives our spirit new life, and heals our soul. This gives us the maximum benefit of having a wholesome body, soul and spirit in order to relate to the issues in our life.

 

Our God-shaped vacuum within us is no longer empty and lifeless, but filled with God’s Spirit and renewed each and every day because we are Born Again. We have a purpose in life, our identity in Christ and our vision clearly focused on the will of God.

 

The old sinful nature died and we are resurrected in Christ. He is now our whole life (Ephesians 3:3-4). We experience the exuberant goodness of our God toward us through His love (John 3:16-17).

 

Christ’s sacrificed His life on the cross to eliminate our sin debt for us and to guarantee the Holy Spirit’s residence within us, if we will only humble our self in the sight of the Lord (James 4:10).

 

Prayer:
Father God, please forgive us for giving You a “bum wrap” and “bad press” among the society of nations across the ages and around the world. Our human behavior, done in Your name, tainted Your name and defamed Your honor among the nations. True salvation connects us to the living water within us, and allows it to flow from us to those You bring into our life (John 7:38).

 

Lead us in a level path in this exact moment, and all of the moments of our life, because of our enemies. Help us to walk in true holy living according to Your Spirit for Your name’s sake (Psalm 23). Regardless of our circumstances, when You are involved in them with us, You turn all of them around for our good (Romans 8:28).

 

Thought for the Day:

With the same conviction we enjoy in knowing that we are born of God’s Spirit through our salvation, which comes from Christ alone, we live with the fulfillment and power of realizing that our sanctification also comes from Christ alone. – Galatians 3:1-3

 

God Uses Satan for His Purposes

The devil cheated Adam and Eve out of their dominion over the earth by his deception, manipulation and lies. This was part of God’s eternal design. What Satan plans to use to harm us, God means for our good (Genesis 50:20).

 

Satan also schemed in his heart to destroy Jesus and to protect his place as the god of this world. Yet, Jesus went to the cross with joy in His heart as He focused on the glory awaiting Him in Heaven (Hebrews 12:2).

 

We live life with this same joy in our own hearts, regardless of our circumstances, looking forward to sitting together with Christ and serving Him for eternity (1 Corinthians 4:9-13; 2 Corinthians 6:8 10; Ephesians 1:21, 2:4-6).

 

There is no need for us to spend time fighting Satan. We draw near to God, resist the devil and he must flee from us (James 4:7). Satan has no authority of his own. He can only do the bidding of our Father God.

 

For example, Jesus, the Lamb of God, who is opening the seal, bowl and trumpet judgments during the Great Tribulation, directs the plans and purposes of the anti-Christ (Revelation 5:2-10).

 

God uses Satan for His eternal purpose on the earth. He gives Satan the power to employ sin’s temptation to draw hearts away from God, which were never sold out to Him in the first place.

 

These people sit on the fence, giving lip-service to God and serving and giving to God’s Kingdom; but they are just going through the motions (Mathew 7:22). They were never truly converted in their spirit.

 

When we totally surrender our will to God in salvation, His Spirit enters our spirit. He directs our every thought, word and deed. We actually become the love of Christ to the world of lost humanity around us (John 2:12-14; Exodus 33:13).

 

Prayer:

Father God, as authentic Believers, we submit to You, then resist the devil, and he has to flee from us (James 4:7). This does not mean our tribulation in life will end, but that You love us and make us more than conquerors through every trial (Romans 8:37). We can trust in You through everything that we experience in life, because You care for us (1 Peter 5:7).

 

You even make all of our paths straight because of our enemies (Psalm 27:11; Zechariah 4:7). Jesus is exalted in us as we overcome life’s hurdles. He makes us His joint heirs by His power within us (1 John 3:2; Ephesians 3:6). We find our true self, hidden with Christ in You (Colossians 3:3). Help us to respond to You when You call us out of sin into Your glorious life (1 Peter 2:9).

 

Thought for the Day:

Problems are simply opportunities for God to prove Himself strong on our behalf; we find out what He is doing in every situation and then join Him.

God is the Holy One of Israel; yet, He cares for each one of us individually, regardless of our circumstances. He is our redeemer and our strong tower (Isaiah 41:13-14; Psalm 46:1).

 

He actually holds our hand when we are afraid, and He promises to help each one of us. When we allow fear to overwhelm us, we fall into its trap; but when we trust the Lord, He keeps us safe (Proverbs 29:25; Psalm 34:4).

 

We see how Jesus calmed the storms for His disciples, and He abides within us and protects us as well (Mark 4:39-40). The angel of the Lord actually camps around those who honor God with their life, and He delivers us (Psalm 34:7).

 

Even if we are reviled or falsely accused when we are living righteously, God will reward us for it. Regardless of what any person says about us or threatens us with He is our defense (1 Peter 3:14; Deuteronomy 3:22).

 

God places His redeeming hand on our life, encourages us not to give place to fear and reminds us that He is our all in all (Revelation 1:17). He took on the form of a man in order to save us.

 

All He asks of us is to believe in Him (Mark 5:36). In failing to believe, we condemn our self to eternal damnation (John 3:18). In our belief, we accept God’s eternal plan for our life (John 3:6-17).

 

Nothing we do, think or say, or anything that is in heaven or on the earth, can separate us from God’s love (Romans 8:38-39). We are eternally His child and He loves us unconditionally.

 

Prayer:

Father God, You actually rejoice over us with singing (Zephaniah 3:17). We dwell in the shadow of Your wings and You give us shelter and rest. You are our refuge and fortress in this world of unrest, and we trust in You. Your faithfulness is a shield and strong tower for us. We have nothing to fear in the day or the night.

 

You give Your angels charge over us to keep us. Even if we fall, they are there to sustain and guard us. Since we love You, You rescue us, and You protect us when we walk in Your will and ways. We call on You and You answer us, deliver us and give us honor in any sort of trouble (Psalm 91:1-16).

 

Thought for the Day:

Since the Lord is with us, there is no reason for us to feel fear. Man can do nothing to us if God is right there with us, helping us and delivering us from every sort of evil. – Psalm 118:6-7

 

 

God is in Control – Supernatural Provision and Help

Over the years of my walk with the Lord, I learned to stand tall in courage and strength that come from Christ in me. He never, ever leaves or forsakes me for any reason (Deuteronomy 31:6).

 

He alone is our refuge and He gives us strength and continual help in any trouble that comes our way (Psalm 46:1). There is no reason to be afraid of what life or people will do to us, because God is our helper (Psalm 118:6-7).

 

If we allow our self to fear what the devil, the world or evil people will do to us, it becomes a physical, emotional and mental liability. When we trust in the Lord and walk in His Spirit, He gives us peace and safety, even in trials (Proverbs 29:25).

 

Jesus proved these promises time and again with His disciples. He even has power over nature (Mark 4:39-40). He is a victorious warrior in our midst. He exults and rejoices over us with joy and His quiet, steadfast love (Zephaniah 3:17).

 

When we dwell in the shelter of the Almighty, we rest in the shadow of the Most High God. He is our refuge and fortress, our God in whom we place our trust.

 

He shelters us with the feathers of His wings and shields us with His faithfulness. We do not fear any darkness or pestilence or plague; because although thousands may fall all arounds us, His angels guard us on every side (Psalm 91:1-16).
Prayer:

Father God, since we love You and acknowledge Your authority in our life, You rescue and protect us. When we call upon You, You answers us. You are with us in trouble, and You honor and deliver us. We are assured that no matter what life throws at us, You are in the middle of the turmoil and struggle right along with us.

 

You strengthen us and give us courage, You help us and lift us in Your hands above the storms of life. You live within us by Your Spirit and You are greater than Satan and his evil doers in this world. We cast all of our cares on You, because we know without a doubt that You care for us.

 

Thought for the Day:
As we keep our faith and trust in Him, God strengthens us in the very core of our soul; and He lifts our spirit when life tends to overwhelm us with circumstances beyond our control, and these trials attempt to drag us down in fear and discouragement.

 

The Joy of the Lord

Is it really possible to be happy all of the time? It is my experience that the answer is “No.” However, it is possible to rejoice in the Lord always and to maintain a positive attitude (Philippians 4:4,8).

 

The key words here are “in the Lord.” God makes everything right, no matter how jaded or off kilter they are. Through the lens of eternity, with a spiritual mind and in the presence of God, we see everything differently.

 

We enjoy a Heavenly focus and can truly rejoice regardless of our negative circumstances. Even when all odds are against us and there is nothing positive to rejoice over, we know that everything will work out for our ultimate good (Romans 8:28; Jeremiah 29:11).

 

When we feel anxiety rise up in our soul, we can immediately take it to the Lord in prayer, giving thanks for what He has already provided and knowing that His blessings are just around the corner (Philippians 4:5-6).

 

God’s peace guides us through the troubled waters and rocky mountain paths, making our ways straight (Philippians 4:7; Psalm 27:11). Even when the circumstances make no human sense, God floods us with His peace.

 

We struggle with feelings for which we are responsible. We worry for our well-being and that of our children and family. The truth, however, is that God will take responsibility to provide us with all of our needs (Philippians 4:19).

 

He gives us wisdom on what to do each moment of the day and he guides us through uncharted waters and tumultuous seas to the safe harbor of His love.

 

Prayer:

Father God, our light and temporary affliction on this earth cannot be compared to the glory, which You already prepared for us in Your glorious Kingdom (2 Corinthians 4:17). We stop attempting to keep our self safe, and we trust our self, our loved ones and our church family to Your safe-keeping.

 

We know without a doubt that You care about us, so we put our worries in Your capable hands. You equip us for every good work (2 Timothy 3:16-17). We rejoice in our risen Savior and sit with Him at Your right hand even now (Hebrews 10:12).

 

Thought for the Day:

We trust in God’s plan for our future and bathe all of our requests to Him with gratitude and joy.