Freedom in Christ

Satan plants lies in the trauma of our past to keep us in bondage to the negative emotions of that incident. This fear, dread, shame, depression, deprivation, anger, revenge, etc. all influence our life every day.
( http://www.theophostic.com )

These negative feelings filter into our conscious mind from our subconscious mind and intensify our current mood. They program us for failure, addictions, broken relationships and stress. They control our life and we often do not even realize that they are there.

Satan blinds us to their existence and has a field day with our emotions. The solution to this Pandora’s Box is to submit our thoughts to God and to ask Him to show us these lies and His truth about them (Galatians 5:1).

Start with the manifesting negative emotion and consciously concentrate on the words in your mind fueling that emotion. Those are Satan’s lies. Then ask God to show you His truth about these lies.

Sometimes, the negative emotion will lead us to an idol in our life. We relinquish to God our expectations and pet peeves, which fuel our negative emotions and cause us to feel frustrated, irritated and angry.

God frees us from the tyranny of these emotions. This freedom is our inheritance as children of God (John 8:36). There is no reason for us to remain in bondage to these past issues, when we are guaranteed this liberty through Christ’s sacrifice on Calvary’s cross (Galatians 5:1).

It may take a while for us to walk in total freedom from the past, but little by little and day by day, God delivers us from Satan’s lies and bathes us in His peace, joy and love.

Prayer:
Father God, remind us that pride and rebellion restrict our freedom in You. We cannot walk in Your Truth (Psalm 119:160) without walking in Your righteousness as well. You desire our total devotion and worship (Mark 12:30). That is why You created mankind in the first place.

As we completely surrender to Your will for our life and exalt You above all else, we will decrease as You increase in our soul (John 3:30). We will feel fewer negative thoughts and emotions and find Your joy, which is beyond description and full of Your glorious presence (1 Peter 1:7-9).

Thought for the Day:
Unbelief, the flesh and disobedience will keep us in bondage to Satan’s lies.

– Deuteronomy 7:17; James 4:3; Titus 3:3

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Rejecting God’s Truth

One problem with human beings is that we put way too much emphasis on understanding everything. If we cannot comprehend it with our human reasoning, we reject it.

We are the created beings; and God is the Creator. His ways are higher than our ways. His thoughts are far beyond our ability to comprehend Him from our human perspective (Isaiah 55:8-9).

God’s love for us, regardless of our religion, nationality, color and gender is unconditional. Yet, so many refuse to surrender their life to His loving kindness and grace.

It is through the riches of God’s grace that we receive forgiveness for our sins. There is nothing we can do to buy, earn or to obtain His forgiveness (Ephesians 2:8-9).

We simply humble our self and receive forgiveness as a gift through faith in Christ (John 3:16-18). We also receive a place in God’s family and we are co-heirs with Christ for eternity (Romans 8:17).

As Christians, God calls us to submit to and pray for our governing authorities so that it may be well with us (1 Peter 2:18-21); 1 Timothy 2:1-4). We truly prosper in this world, not by our hard work, but by our submission to God’s Spirit.

We do not evaluate our self by the world’s standards, nor do we live according to the example of those on this earth. We gain our self-esteem from God’s Word and Christ in us.

Prayer:
Father God, we ask You to grant us the wisdom to accept Your Word as our standard for our faith and our lifestyle. Work a submissive attitude into our soul, so that we can accept Your Truth at face value, rather than having to understand it before we accept it.

Teach us what it means to live a life of faith in Your faithfulness. Thank You so much for the sacrifice of Christ for us all. Give us a grateful heart and a new song on our lips (Psalm 40:3), so that we can praise You all the days of our life.

Thought for the Day:
If we truly want God’s blessings in our life, we can submit to the principles of His Kingdom and receive His righteousness, peace and joy in return. – Romans 14:17

God’s Peace Rules

It is so difficult not to react with anxiety to events occurring in our life and in our world. Also, due to childhood experiences that we suppress in our subconscious mind, we are plagued with apprehension all of our life.

We read verses and memorize many of them in order to reprogram our mind with God’s truth. We constantly wonder why we cannot experience the peace of God ruling in our heart (Colossians 3:15-17).

However, those suppressed experiences continue to affect us every day of our life; because hidden within every traumatic memory is a lie from Satan, which our soul believes.

God graciously led me to a counselor who used prayer rather than his advice to help people. He taught me to sit in God’s presence and to allow God to shine His light on these hidden issues (1 Timothy 5:5). ( http://www.theophostic.com )

As we wait on the Lord in prayer, He reveals Satan’s lies and dispels them with His personal word of truth to our soul. As God’s truth disperses the anxiety in our soul, we are able to surrender all of our cares to Him in gratitude (1 Peter 5:7).

Then God’s peace, which comes regardless of our human understanding, guards our soul and spirit from any further lies and abuse through the presence of Christ in us (Philippians 4:6-7).

This peace only comes as we totally surrender to God and allow Him to make our way smooth and peaceful (Proverbs 3:6), as we continually give Him thanks for the victory we have through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:57).

Prayer:
Father God, teach us to pray in the Spirit during every moment of our day. We also need to remember to pray for fellow Believers as we face the issues of our individual lives (Ephesians 6:18; 1 Timothy 2:1). We trust in You in every area of our day. Thank You for listening to us as we pour out our heart to You (Psalm 62:8). Remind us that You will establish our thoughts as we commit our thoughts, words and deeds to You (Proverbs 16:3).

When we are tempted to worry, remind us to live in the moment and to commit each future moment to Your safe keeping rather than worrying about it. You have our best interest in Your heart and You will work out every detail for our eventual blessing (Romans 8:28).

Thought for the Day:
Jesus told us: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about anything, because worry cannot add one positive aspect to your life.” – Matthew 6:25-34

New Strides in Life

American youth grow up under the assumption that we can achieve the American dream. We go to college and we obtain job experience to guarantee our future success. However, life often careens out of our control. We pull our self up by our bootstraps and try all over again, shaking off the depression and hopelessness nipping at our heels.

Time after time, life sends us debilitating storms. We end up treading water, feeling like we will drown. There comes a time in everyone’s life that we eventually admit that we are ultimately powerless to overcome the negative aspects of our life. Some people give up, and end up with physical and mental illnesses; some turn to addictions; and some realize that we need a savior outside of our self (Romans 7:18).

First, we attempt to trust in a person to bail us out. We get into codependent relationships that seem to stifle us in the end. In order to reinstate our sanity, we eventually realize that we must come to believe in a higher power. Some people try Eastern religions, positive thinking or something that epitomizes wholeness to them. This lasts for a little while, but often fizzles out, because our spirit is still dead in sin.

Everyone ever born has an innate knowledge of God within their soul, and they are yearning for their spirit to be reborn (John 3:1-21). Once we come to Christ as our Higher Power, He helps us to clear our conscience of the dead works of unforgiveness, anger, resentment, bitterness, etc. He is greater than anything this world has to offer (Philippians 2:13).

He also reminds us of people to whom we need to ask forgiveness, and He helps us to make amends for the harm we perpetrated on their life (Lamentations 3:40; Luke 6:31; Matthew 5:23-24). We can obtain Christian counseling or find an accountability partner to continually hold us responsible to walk in God’s Truth (James 5:16; 1 Corinthians 10:12).

As we humble our self before the Lord, He replaces our moral deficiencies with the fruit of His Spirit (James 4:10; Galatians 5:22-23). We come to know Him intimately, and He progressively exchanges our carnal nature for His divine nature (2 Peter 1:4). God assures us of His love, which transcends our human understanding. Filling us with His Spirit He slowly and deliberately floods our entire being with Himself (Ephesians 3:19).

Prayer:
Father God, remind us that no one is perfect, and we can forgive those who harmed us and ask forgiveness from those whom we have harmed. As we pray and read Your Word, draw us closer to You, tell us Your Will for each moment of our life, and give us the power to carry it out (Philippians 2:12-13; Colossians 3:16). Thank You for totally forgiving us for our transgressions of Your law and for sanctifying us daily as we walk toward Your perfection (1 John 1:9; Matthew 5:48).

Thought for the Day:
Nothing but living in service to Jesus Christ can fill the void that continually haunts our life. – Romans 12:1

The Beauty of Holiness

What most people do not realize is that there is beauty in holiness (Psalm 29:2, 96:9). There are church denominations, which add to Biblical law and fence members of their congregation into a narrow, legalistic lifestyle, which is more rigid than God ever intended. The standard by which we judge our behavior is not by human dogma, activities or acceptance, but the Truth of God’s Word.

However, there is also a tendency today to skirt Biblical directives and to partake in sinful activities, which we justify in our own heart as harmless. When we flirt with the flesh, the world and Satan, we walk a fine line between God’s Truth and Satan’s lies. We compromise our character. By our thoughts, words and deeds, we tarnish the name of our Father God.

We even shut up the Kingdom of Heaven for some, because of our hypocritical lifestyle (Matthew 23:13-14). God is holy, and He dwells within us; therefore, He desires His habitation to be a place of holiness (1 Peter 1: 15-16). Before He even created the world, God planned for His Saints to live a holy, blameless life before Him, out of our love for Him (Ephesians 1:4, 2:10).

Human beings are so self-centered that we cannot comprehend the fullness of life beyond the grave. We think that we have to experience all that life on this earth has to offer, because we only have one life to live. This is a lie straight from the pit of hell. Our earthly life is merely temporary (James 4:14). It is our life in God’s eternal Kingdom that is our true life.

Prayer:
Father God, our sinful habits and our sinful lifestyle spit in Your face (1 Thessalonians 4:7). We focus on issues in this life, when that is not what You are really concerned about at all. Many people wonder what Your will is for them. Your will is more about our sanctification than our place of employment, brand of car or style of clothing (1 Thessalonians 4:3). Giving thanks for our lot in life is also Your will for us (1 Thessalonians 5:18). You actually put us in the neighborhood and occupation in which we can further Your Kingdom, and that should be our daily focus.

Thought for the Day:
God calls us to be a living testimony of the change His presence makes in our life and as examples of righteous living to the praise of His glory. – Ephesians 1:12

My Soul Thirsts for God

Prayer is our method of communication with God. We pray in one of two ways: monologues or dialogues. A monologue prayer is one-sided. We recite a litany of needs and tell God what we want and how He should provide it. We even give Him the game plan that we think is His best alternative. Of course, a dialogue is two-sided, and we are quiet long enough to hear from God.

God calls us to be still and to know that He is our Almighty God (Psalm 46:10). His words to us never contradict His words in the Bible. If we think we hear from God, and it is contrary to His Biblical words, then we know that Satan, the counterfeit, is trying to lead us away from God’s Truth. God’s sheep know His voice; and the more we listen, the more we recognize that He is speaking to us (John 10:27-33).

Have you ever been very, very thirsty? You mowed the lawn or cleaned all the windows or walked for several miles in the heat and your body is crying out for water. As we mature spiritually, our soul – our thoughts, choices and emotions – comes to this same place of thirsting for God (Psalm 42:1-2). The soul of a spiritual Saint is consumed with longing for more intimacy with God (Psalm 119:20).

We want all of our being to be filled with all of the fullness of God, to have the richest measure of His presence and to become a person entirely filled with God (Ephesians 3:19). Our soul yearns for God, even as we sleep; and our spirit seeks more intimacy with Him both day and night (Isaiah 26:9). Our body and soul ache for Him and cry out for our living God (Psalm 84:2).

Prayer:
Father God, remind us that intimacy infers honesty. We cannot have a personal union with You without an agreement to completely expose our life to Your Holy Spirit. We cannot hide anything from You, because You already know everything about us (Jeremiah 1:5; Psalm 139:13). Thank you that Jesus invites those of us who thirst after Him to come to His living water. Even those with nothing to offer to Him are welcome (Isaiah 55:1), and He freely gives us all things (Romans 8:32).

Thought for the Day:
Our intimate interludes with the Lord are our favorite times of the day.

Spiritual Healing – Part 2

God’s Sweet, Living Water of Healing

Every individual has certain basic needs: Physical, Safety, Love, Belonging, Acceptance and Potential. If the fulfillment of any of these areas is thwarted, we will grow into adulthood with wounds from our childhood and early adult years. Satan plants a lie along with every disappointment we ever experience, and these lies influence our beliefs as adults. ( http://www.theophostic.com )

A lack of fulfillment in these areas of basic human needs can impact our ability to function normally as adults. In Part 1 of Spiritual Healing, I wrote about my anger and bitterness stemming from these needs not being met. In my case of experiencing abuse and deprivation, I grew up feeling fearful and insecure. This trauma caused a mental and emotional disorder due to the reoccurring stress (PTSD).

Since I met the Lord Jesus Christ, however, I realized that the more intimate our union with Christ is, the more willing we are to totally surrender our life to God’s will. This even allows us to look for the seeds of a miracle in every trial we experience. When we come to Christ, He gradually fulfills in us the unmet needs of our past and fills us with His sweet Living Water (John 4:14).

God also uses His process of sanctification to cleanse our thought life, because thoughts determine how we act. Our thoughts originate from three sources:
1. From our past, which is still alive in our subconscious mind
2. From our perception of life through our five senses
3. From satanic forces out to destroy us by distorting God’s Truth (1 Peter 5:8). (More in the next post.)

Prayer:
Father God, You warned us that Satan is our accuser (Revelations 12:10). Any negative thoughts sent to belittle and debilitate us come from him. If we surrender to Your will for each moment of our day, Your Spirit will lead us into all truth (John 16:13). Then, we will filter every situation in our life through Your lens of Truth (1 Corinthians 2:12-13). Remind us that if we are seated with You in heavenly places, we have no need to worry about our life on this earth.

Thought for the Day:
Nothing will occur in our life that is not already part of God’s plan for us. – Ephesians 2:6,10