My Hiding Place

I have a secret hiding place. It is my safe house, my shelter and fortress, my place of rest and rejoicing. Whenever my soul is afraid, I run into it and find safety, balance and serenity.

My secret hiding place is called the spirit of man (1 Corinthians 2:11). Prior to our coming to Christ, this safe place is all boarded up and inaccessible. Sin destroyed it and it is uninhabitable.

Yet, when we surrender our life wholly to God, our spirit is born again. We meet God there. From the moment of our salvation, He dwells with us in our spirit by His Holy Spirit and He never leaves (Romans 8:9, 16; Hebrews 13:5).

As we mature in our walk with God, we no longer live through our body or soul – our mind, choices and emotions. We do not depend on our human skills, talents or capabilities, but we give God full reign in our life.

We walk this earth in our body in union with God’s Spirit who abides within us; but we function in life through our spirit rather than our body and soul (1 Corinthians 3:16).

God still uses our body and soul for His purposes in the earth. He transforms our personality and capabilities and makes us a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17).

We are no longer tied to the earthly realm, influenced by sin and hindered by human insufficiency. Our external world my fall down around our ears, or people and experiences may attack our thoughts or emotions; but like Paul, we rejoice in the tribulation.

We experience life from our safe place: our spirit within us (Galatians 5:25). Our carnality is dead and it is no longer us, but Christ who lives in and through us (Colossians 3:3).

We are controlled, guided and filled through our entire being with all of the fullness of God (Ephesians 3:16-19). We experience eternal life as a reality even now, by intimately knowing the only true God and His Son, Jesus Christ, whom He sent (John 17:3).

Prayer:
Father God, due to Christ’s sacrifice on Calvary’s cross, we can leave behind the cares of this temporal world and touch the glories of Heaven. Our spirit is filled with Your Spirit and we feel safe and right at home there (Revelation 3:20). We live in step with Your Spirit from within our spirit, separated from our body and soul and viewing them as from a distance.

Regardless of what the world, the devil or our flesh attempt to entice us to participate in, or the amount of pain and grief they try to distract us with, they have no effect on us or lure for us, because we live in our spirit by Your Spirit and no longer through our flesh.

Thought for the Day:
Christ is our whole life and we live by His faith; He gave Himself for us, because He loves us completely and unconditionally.
– Galatians 2:20; Colossians 3:4

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WHO LOVES YOU – Part 1 – The Love of the Father

God is head over heels in love with you (1 John 4: 8-11). God’s love is a spiritual, physical, mental and emotional “high”. Human love is merely a shadow of His love.

If the earth’s axis tilted a degree in any direction, if the stars fell from the sky, if a large solar storm erupted on the sun, if the oceans exceeded their boundaries, if animals no longer had an innate fear of man, if all the molten lava in the earth erupted at once, we would all die.

God’s hand, keeping the earth in perfect balance, keeps us all living and breathing and existing on planet earth. The natural order of the universe proves to us that God loves us.

When we repent of our sin, we realize that God actually chose us and adopted us as His beloved children. With God’s love, we do not need another person in our life in order to feel loved, affirmed and validated.

God constantly draws my attention to the fact that He is touching me with evidences of His love through a variety of means. I call them God’s Little Hugs.

He reveals His love through things like a bird’s outstretched wings, a perfect rose, a lady bug, the shapes of the clouds, the waves of the sea, the seasons of the year, a red cardinal chirping through my open window and in the numbers on the clock.

Escaping a devastating calamity is another occasion when we feel the love of God. When we see His hand protecting us from sudden and sure destruction and danger, our hearts swell with incredible gratitude and love for God.

To realize that God actually intervened for you makes you feel so precious, cared about and loved. At times like these we feel His love surrounding us and keeping us safe.

His love flows through us and out of us to everyone He brings into contact with us. He restores us with His joy and upholds with His generous Spirit (Psalm 51:10-12).

Prayer:
Father God, when our heart is open to Your love, we can feel it pouring over us like a waterfall. We are drenched with Your continual love. Even the cells in our body are full of Your love.

I often feel like I am wrapped in a soft, fluffy blanket of Your love. Your love gives us such a sense of security. Unsurpassed peace and joy flood our soul – our mind, will and emotions. We give You all the glory and praise and depend on Your love and Spirit to fill and guide us through every moment of our life.

Thought for the Day:
All through the day, I have learned to watch for the unexpected ways that God tells me, “I love you!”

Shopping Spree

Once every quarter, we take the trek to the area Walmart, and I put everything on the shelves into my buggy; or so it seems! I load up on items from the meat, dairy, fresh veggie and frozen veggie aisle.

As the cart gets fuller, our bank balance gets smaller; and when I get home, I have hours of work ahead of me. I pre-cook all of the meats and veggies in order to preserve their freshness.

This also allows me to have simple, quick meals for the months ahead, and to save space in the freezer. Today, I have been cooking and freezing since 4PM, and it is after 10PM; but I am only three quarters of the way finished with this process.

I wonder, at times, why I put myself through this. However, I enjoy the fruit of my labor on the hectic work days, when I can serve a fully home-cooked meal in minutes instead of hours.

Our Christian walk is very much like this shopping and cooking spree. When we come to Christ as a baby Christian, we have no resources to provide for our needs.

We are extremely hungry for God, as well as to learn about Him and His principles; therefore, we go to every church service, read every book and listen to every radio and TV preacher we can find.

We stockpile this spiritual food in our newly reborn spirit, all neatly categorized and shelved in all the right places. Then, in years to come, we have a storehouse of spiritual food and reinforcement to see us through the roughest trials life has planned for us.

Prayer:
Father God, there is nothing more fulfilling than fellowshipping with You around Your table. We thank You for Your generous provision for us in body, soul and spirit, throughout our lifetime. We give You all the praise and glory for the peace and joy we enjoy in Your presence, regardless of life’s trials.

Remind us to continue to gather Your spiritual food, regardless of how often we read through the Bible or how many verses we committed to memory. Every day with You is “sweeter than the day before” (Robert Claire Loveless).

Thought for the Day:
If you are going through a trial, and feeling famished for the presence of God, remember the first principles you learned when He came in to dine with you that very first time.           – Revelation 3:20

The Family of God

God, our righteous Husbandman, grafts each of us as a branch into the vine of Christ (John 15:1, 5). He teaches us to balance our life. He reminds us to set apart time to worship Him, to fellowship with His Saints, to play with our family and friends and to help other people in their times of need. God gives us wisdom during our workweek, and shows us how to improve both the process and progress of our day.

God’s Spirit guides us supernaturally. He gives us power, as Christ’s Body on the earth, to perform greater works than Jesus did (John 14:12). We live for Christ, and He lives in and through us. We no longer strive, because we enter into His rest (Hebrews 4:10). We enjoy the transformed life with the nature of Christ in us. We do not rely on human effort and legalistic performances for salvation, but on Christ’s righteousness in us.

We are a fellowship of like-mind, authentic, Born Again Believers, and a Body with a common goal. We commit to prefer, honor, love, accept, agree with, serve, bear with, submit to, forgive, admonish, encourage, build up and fellowship with one another. We are humble, sympathetic, compassionate, hospitable, and devoted to each other (2 Corinthians 5:21; John 13:34-35; Romans 12:10, 15:7; 1 Corinthians 1:10; Galatians 5:13; Ephesians 4:2, 5:21; Colossians 3:13, 3:16; 1 Thessalonians 5:11; Hebrews 10:25; 1 Peter 3:8, 4:9).

God gives us the discipline of forgiveness to keep our relationships in right standing with Him and one another. We face the wounds and feel the grief deeply in our heart. Then we choose not to allow the offender to live rent free in our heart. If we do not forgive, He cannot forgive us (Matthew 6:14). We do not let him/her off the hook, but we put them in God’s capable hands to mete our His revenge on them (Romans 12:19).

Prayer:
Father God, You amaze us in Your goodness to us. You think of everything we need; sometimes even before we realize we need it (Isaiah 65:24)! We are so grateful to You for making us fellow citizens in Your Kingdom. We are no longer outsiders and aliens in this world, because You made all of us members of Your own household (Ephesians 2:19). Your Word helps us to make sense of this world. We look forward to living with You in the new heaven and the new earth (Revelation 21:1).

Thought for the Day:
Behold how good and pleasant it is for the family of God to dwell together in unity. – Psalm 133:1

God Provides

King David commented that throughout his life, He never saw a righteous person forsaken or his descendants begging bread (Psalm 37:25). God provides for His own and He blesses thousands of generations of descendents of those who love and serve Him (Exodus 20:6). We are happy and put all of our hope in our Lord. He keeps every promise He makes to us with as much certainty as He uses to keep the world He created in perfect balance (Psalm 146:5-6).

He causes the Godly to flourish like a palm tree. They grow tall and He transplants them into His own garden, so that we are under His personal care. Even in our old age, He sees to it that we produce fruit and remain green and vital. Our prosperity honors the Lord, because it shows the world that God cares for His own (Psalm 92:12-15). When we are acquainted with God’s ways, we come to put our trust in Him, because He never forsakes anyone who seeks Him (Psalm 9:10).

When someone or something comes against God’s beloved, He takes it very personally (Zechariah 2:8). We are precious in His sight (Isaiah 43:3). God’s will is not an objective to achieve, but a lifestyle to live. We trust Him because He always helps those who seek Him (Psalm 9:10). He never sleeps, but watches over us day and night. He cares for us and defends us, keeping us from evil and preserving our life. He keeps his eye upon us as we come and go, and guards us in all of our ways (Psalm 121:2-8).

Jehovah made the mountains and the heavens; and yet, is mindful of all mankind (Psalm 8:4-6). He gives justice to the poor and the oppressed, as well as food to the hungry. He heals the sick, lifts the burdens of those crippled under a heavy weight, protects immigrants and cares for both orphans and widows. The Lord loves His righteous Saints and is their defense (Psalm 146:7-9). He gives His angels charge over us, so that we never stumble or fall (Psalm 91:11-12).

Prayer:
Father God, we will never forget Your promises, Your mercy and grace or the marvelous works You perform (Psalm 111:4-6). Your loving kindness pours out forever and ever on those who revere You. If we are faithful to Your covenant and obey Your precepts, Your salvation is for us and our children (Psalm 103:17). Your love stands firm forever and You establish Your faithfulness in Heaven and earth, and it endures forever (Psalm 89:2, 119:90).

Thought for the Day:
Those who refuse to obey the Lord do not comprehend His might or the wonders of His creation. – Nehemiah 9:17, 31