Dreaming Dreams

God used dreams throughout the Biblical accounts of His interaction with mankind (Job 33:15-16; Acts 2:17). He spoke through dreams to Kings, prophets and Saints of old (Genesis 15:12, 17-18; 28:12, 37:5, 46:2; Daniel 7:1-9; 1 Kings 3:5).

He also used dreams with New Testament characters such as to calm Joseph’s fears about marrying Mary and to save Jesus from sure death (Matthew 1:20-21; 2:12-13, 19; Acts 2:17, 16:9-10, 18:9-10). Pilate’s wife dreamed that he should not condemn Jesus in spite of the insistence of the Jews (Matthew 27:19).

The Word of God makes it clear that God uses dreams in our life (Joel 2:28-31). He gives us wisdom, insight and guidance to bring a resolution of issues in our life.

In our sleeping state, our soul and spirit are still very active. They are less influenced by our issues, fears and insecurities, which plague us during our waking moments.

Through dreams, God often reveals to us His character, intentions and lessons that He wants us to learn.

He will use dreams to give us wisdom on puzzling experiences in our life, peace which transcends human reasoning and direction for some activity He calls us to perform.

Satan and our own soul can inspire dreams as well as God (1 John 4:1). They are often brief and unrealistic (Psalm 126:1; Isaiah 29:8). The interpretation of our dreams will never contradict the Word of God (James 1:5).

Sleep and dreaming restores our soul to equilibrium. If dreams badger us during our sleep, we can ask God to give our soul peace and allow us to enjoy uninterrupted sleep (Psalm 127:2).

As we dream about issues that need resolution, and which we ignore during our waking moments (Ecclesiastes 5:3), God heals our soul. Our spirit sings praises to God as we sleep and we often awaken to our soul singing and making melody in our heart to the Lord.

Prayer:
Father God, thank You for giving us such a fail proof and complex brain that works like a computer as we sleep. It categorizes, files and works through issues which need resolution. Once we are Born Again, Your Spirit who abides in our spirit, will influence this series of chemical impulses and the outcome of this activity in our brain.

We would probably explode or self-destruct with the intensity of our anxiety and other negative emotions if You did not give us the ability to work out these issues in our dreams. You are our great and mighty God; and we can never thank You enough for Your vigilant care over each and every one of us in every facet of our waking and sleeping life.

Thought for the Day:
Dreams are tangible and helpful; they are made of memories, concerns, direction, hopes, vision and reality all rolled into one plot with several sub-plots and they influence the story of the rest of our life.

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The Just Live by Faith

When we consider the sower of seed in Jesus’ parable, only one-fourth of the seed fell on good ground where it rooted and flourished.

When we realize the reception that Christ received while He lived on this earth, it puts things into clear perspective. If mankind would not receive Jesus when they could see Him, far fewer will believe in Him when they cannot see Him (Romans 10:14-15).

Most humans rely on finite, physical senses and limited mental powers in analyzing truth. If it does not feel right, then we reject it. Satan is right there making sure that the things of God make no human sense.

That is why faith is stressed so often in Biblical passages. The just live by faith and not by sight (Habakkuk 2:4; Romans 1:17; Galatians 3:11; Hebrews 10:38). The unjust live by sight and not by faith. They mock faith and scorn those of us living by it.

Yet, we have more than blind faith. The Bible declared that the earth was round long before Columbus ever disproved the common myth that it was flat. Science is always catching up with the Bible.

Not one archaeological discovery ever disproved God’s written Word, while many historic finds prove the veracity of the Bible. Yet, people prefer to believe the lies, which Satan continually propagates as truth, rather than the Truth of God’s Word.

Unbelievers choose to trust in science, math and technology rather than in the reality of Jesus Christ. They believe in theories and hypothesis – even those with missing links – as if they are facts of truth.

Sadly, only one-fourth of the world’s population throughout the ages will ever believe in Christ and surrender their heart and soul to Him. Let us continually pray for and share our testimony with anyone who is willing to listen.

Prayer:
Father God, Jesus Christ generously gave His life to offer the whole world Your promise of everlasting life. It is for all people everywhere with no distinction of color, race, creed, shape, size or intelligence.

However, more people reject Your generous offer than receive it with whole-hearted devotion and thanksgiving. Pride and rebellion have always run rampant on the earth and self-reliance is the mantra. Give us opportunities to share Your truth with anyone who is willing to receive it.

Thought for the Day:
Good things are very often the enemy of the best things; yet, so many people are willing to take second best and base their entire life on it.

Prayer Journal

Contrary to popular belief, God cannot answer the prayers of an unrighteous person. Even if we are Born Again, if we harbor unconfessed sin in our heart, God will not stay in our presence (Psalm 66:18; Proverbs 15:29).

Otherwise, there is no sin too horrific or concern too trivial to bring to Him in prayer. We can talk to God about anything and everything that is on our mind, and then sit in companionable silence to listen as He speaks to us.

So many people are intimidated by the concept of prayer. They hesitate to speak to God, because they think that He is too busy with the rest of the world to be bothered by our petty concerns.

They would never, ever pray in public, because they are afraid that people might judge their efforts and find them lacking. Yet, prayer is as easy as talking to your best friend. Jesus is our very best friend (Proverbs 18:24).

The only perfect, righteous man ever to live on planet earth bore the shame of the sins of every person ever born. Yet, He is our Good Shepherd who lays down His life for His sheep (John 10:11).

He willingly gave up His life for our eternal security (John 10:16-18, 15:13). He loves us without measure. He gave us His Word as our comfort and our guide.

Praying Bible verses gives us the life-giving power of the Word behind our prayers. These verses were well written by people who felt just like we do. They inspire us to pray using our own words too.

We can journal in a notebook as we pray, in order to record the issues on our heart. Then, when God answers those prayers we can record the date in our journal, which will increase our faith.

Taking time to listen to God’s answers as we pray allows Him to communicate with us in His still, small voice in the center of our being – in our spirit.

The more we sit in those quiet moments, the more we will hear from God, and the more we will come to recognize His voice (Psalm 46:10). He will lead us throughout our day in this same way.

Prayer:
Father God, prayer is the opportunity to speak to You, the God of the Universe. There is no being higher than You and Your ways are beyond human reasoning, because You already know the end from the beginning.

Listening to Your truth through Your Word and by You speaking to us in times of prayer is the greatest opportunity we can ever experience on this earth. We find our true joy only in Your presence in our life.

Draw us ever closer to Your heart and remind us that You are waiting to hear our voice in praise to Your glory, in contrition for our sins, and in wonder, both for who You are and for all that You do for us each day.

Thought for the Day:
Although God may not give us the answer we requested in our prayers, He will always give us something better; even if it does not seem like it at the time.

Words are Precious

Words are very precious to me. I love to write, I love to learn new words and use them, and I love to read God’s Word. Last night, I inadvertently deleted several posts I had written for my blog.

I was devastated. I backed up my files four days before this, but I had a writing spurt between then and the catastrophe and the Holy Spirit helped me to write some inspired words. All lost.

I called my sons and between them, they did their best to recover my precious words. The files did not go to the recycle bin, or if they did, whatever happened to my computer wiped them out.

I also lost the Google Talk phone capability on my computer. This made me realize that if I felt this loss so deeply, I will be devastated if I ever lost the Word of God through persecution of the church in America.

At my age, I do not have a good memory anymore. Much of the Bible, which I memorized in the past is no longer in my conscious mind. I will not be able to fall back on that if the precious Word of God is taken from us.

Therefore, I purposed in my heart that I will go back to the verses that I could once recall at will and refresh my memory every night, because those words are stored in my subconscious mind.

As I reread them, I am easily recalling them into my conscious mind. Many of them were set to music by friends in my past, which makes it easier to remember them.

I want to make God’s Word a priority in my life, so if we ever lose the written, my spirit and soul can find nourishment from the words I hid in my heart (Psalm 119:11).

Prayer:
Father God, let us never take Your Word for granted. Our freedoms in America over all of these years lulled us into a sense of security that is no longer guaranteed. Many other countries across the globe lost their freedoms in small increments over time and we are losing them also. There is not a Christian nation left in our world today.

We look forward to Christ’s imminent return; but if You tarry any longer, America may fall into enemy hands and we may lose our hard won freedoms. Help us to hide Your Word in our hearts so that it will sustain us in our times of trials now and in the future.

Thought for the Day:
The Word of God speaks to our spirit and soul like no other words we could ever read or hear; it sustains us through every trial.
– Psalm 119:116

So Much More

Some of us accept the free gift of Salvation offered by God through Jesus Christ, others reject Him altogether, and some of us try to earn Salvation through our own merits and good works (John 3:16-18; Ephesians 2:8-9).

People blame God for the suffering in this world. Once we put aside our pride and rebellion, we can influence our children, family and friends to use prayer to solve their problems rather than to resort to blame, violence and carnality.

We teach them to aspire to use their vocation and hobbies to make the world a better place. Even more important than this, however, is teaching them the Word of God.

Life is not about doing, but about being. God has a perfect plan for each person ever born (Ephesians 2:10). If we branch off in our own direction, we end up spinning our wheels.

However, if we focus on what God is doing in and through our life each moment, we discover His divine appointments throughout the day as we follow the leading of His Holy Spirit.

Through the blood of Christ and the word of our testimony, we can heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead and cast out devils all in Jesus’ name and through His Holy Spirit (Matthew 10:8).

Christ in us is the light of the world (John 8:12). God places His authentic Believers in a candlestick, which He can move as He wills, to give the whole world an opportunity to come to Christ’s Light.

As His church, we are a city set on a hill, which cannot be hidden. We can let His light in us shine so brightly that people will see our good works and give God the glory (Matthew 5:14-16).

Prayer:
Father God, we have assurance that You hear our prayers. Not only do You give us what we ask for, if it is according to Your will, but You also give us abundantly more than we request (Ephesians 3:20). We see the truth of this in Your answer to Solomon’s prayer (1 Kings 3:11).

How often we place our affections on this world’s wealth and resources. We labor more for mammon’s trappings than for the eternal matters of Your Kingdom.

How much better it is for us to put our treasure where moth and rust do not destroy (Matthew 6:19-20). Remind us that prayer, witnessing, Christian relationships and mentoring others for Christ are the true jewels of life.

Thought for the Day:
The Word of God truly is the mightiest sword. – Hebrews 4:12

Help My Unbelief

A father brings his son to Jesus. The boy has a mute spirit and experiences epileptic-type seizures. He believes Jesus can heal his son; yet because the disciples already failed to do so, he is afraid to try again. He asks Jesus for help with his unbelief (Mark 9:23-25).

We all feel this way sometimes. We know what the Word of God says, what preachers tell us, and what our friends share with us; yet, we still have such little faith!

Through this tiny verse God shows His humor and mercy in the same breath! He teaches us that the important aspect is to choose to believe, even when circumstances cause us to feel uncertain.

God understands that we lose hope and get discouraged. So, God put this powerful verse in the Bible to remind us that as long as we choose to believe, then He will do the rest.

Prayer:
Lord, we want to walk in obedience, trusting in Your promises and doing greater works than Jesus did (John 14:12). We believe in You; yet, at times, our faith is weak. Thank You for helping our unbelief, and for providing for all of our spiritual, physical and emotional needs.

We praise You day and night for Your wonderful works and multitude of blessings to the Your children. You do so much for us and take such an active roll in the details of our life. Thank You for caring enough to give Your life for our redemption and salvation.

Thought for the Day:
Hearing from God often requires that we find a quiet place to still our thoughts and focus on His presence in our life.

Struggling with Our Faith – Part 2

Our struggles with our faith come because God does not meet up to our selfish human expectations. He does not answer our prayers or provide for us in the way that He does for other people who claim to preach His Word.

This faulty understanding of God is not scriptural, and must fail in time. Isolated verses from the Bible, taken out of the context of the verses around them and the rest of the verses pertaining to this same issue, are not firm enough on which to rest our faith.

Our faith only grows firmer and stronger as we increase our understanding of God and His ways by considering the whole Bible in its context (Romans 10:17). God’s Holy Spirit comforts, guides and nurtures us in our walk as Believers.

The Spirit of God within us is the truest proof of our relationship to God. We no longer live according to the dictates of our flesh, conscience or human instincts.

Our life changes; we grow discontent with this world and we look forward to serving God for eternity. Reading and believing God’s Word fortifies our faith and hope and fills our Spirit with spiritual food.

Prayer:
Teach us to humble our self and to minister in this world as a servant for Your glory (Matthew 20:26-28). We will stand firm in our faith regardless of either approval or criticism from other people, or how or when You choose to meet our needs. We pray that You will strengthen our loved ones in their inner being, so that they can believe in Jesus through Your Holy Spirit (Ephesians 3:16).

Thought for the Day:
As selfishness, pride and flesh decrease in us, God can fill us through all of our being with all of His fullness. – John 3:30; Ephesians 3:19