Morning thoughts 💭 

“O give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy;”

Psalm 107:1-2

Giving thanks to God isn’t something we wait to do when we receive a blessing, get that job position, pass that certain class, or anything of the sort. Although thanking God for the things he gives us is a great habit, it shouldn’t be the only time we think to do it. We shouldn’t have a conditional type of relationship with him, that’s a false kind of love that isn’t genuine. Here in psalms, David is proclaiming that God deserves thanks simply because he is good and always will be. On good days, on bad days, in times of stress, and in times of peace….give thanks to God. Don’t limit your praise to a conditional type of mindset….
Peace ✌🏾 

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The hard truth…

Sometimes the truth can be the hardest thing to tell, honesty exposes things we would much rather leave hidden and forgotten in the darkness of our minds. There’s something about a lie, a facade, that keeps ppl thinking you’re one way when internally there’s something much more severe going on. Exposure to things meant to be hidden hardly ever feels good, but there is no way to truly stand in light without being exposed. Comes hand in hand. I’m honestly just tired of hiding it. 

With that being said, my deepest struggle and one I always tried to hide to a certain extent is pornagraphy. To cope with not having sex, this is what I watched to satisfy that. I am ashamed of it, but it was never enough to make me completely stop. Watch,  repent, go a while free of it then watch again, an on going cycle, all because of me surrendering to my lust. Porn is destructive, actively building a bondage deep within to lust. This problem continued to grow and expand just websites however. My hunger for that type of thrill seemed to grow. Beyond the sites, it grew to twitter and ig,  following and seeking things that centered around pornography. I was off the sites, but moved to social media to feed this hunger until that no longer was enough, then it moved to sexting. Sexual conversations that I could control gave a more fulfilling rush that I indulged in. This has plagued me so heavily, a burden I was willingly placing on my life. This created so much separation between me and God, opened the door to depression, and created confusion in my life. But more recently it did so much more…

This practice destroyed the heart of my best friend. In the midst of my relationship with her, I acknowledged my struggle with porn but I wasn’t completely honest about it, how I never really been. Whenever I spoke about it I made light of it, “oh well I struggle porn some but I’m working though it”, no I was struggling and losing. The pattern of growth from porn to sexting happened within my relationship and what that worse not only did I lie about it,  I convinced myself that lies could help the problem. If I just forgot about it and moved on, it would go away. It happened multiple times before I realized I was putting the one thing that gave me fulfillment was in jeopardy, my hidden actions were exposed and truth revealed itself. Extending from my problem with lust, my selfishness and caused me to protect what I wanted to keep through lying and hoping to forget. I deleted all social apps off of my phone in attempts to remove my hidden struggles by just forgetting about them all. I did forget but months later truth came to the light and wrecked my best friends heart. My struggle that all started from websites could have been prevented by simply being honest with myself. Deceiving myself into believing this was something I could contain while trying to maintain my relationship with God and my best friend. The hurt I caused to both parties was shown true through several expressions of hurt, pain, and disbelief. How could I have done that? Selfishness, pride, lust…these things and more always leads to destruction, no matter the enjoyment of the path. 

I shared all this in the hopes that if you are dealing with any kind of struggle, deal with it immediately. Don’t feed it, don’t ignore it, don’t hide it, let God bring it to the light of deliverance through honesty when you initially realize it. Sin leads to the destruction of things you may hold dear to you, don’t let your realization come after the fact. Through God you have the chance to be better than your struggles, take it and prosper. 

To my best friend, I’m truly sorry. I let this struggle plus my bad decision making lead to hurting you. I never intended on the pain I brought you. The spot you had in my life wasn’t a job space or position, it was never meant to ever be replaced. I and my selfish acts turned smiles into cries of pain, and I only have myself to blame. Forgiveness I don’t deserve, a second chance much less than that, but I hope somewhere deep down you could. I would give anything to change things, to make new what I destroyed, to continue toward the future we visioned…but actions have consequences and I know I have to deal with that. 

To God, you’ve shown me the dynamics of our relationship through the one with my best friend. I wanted deliverance just as you wanted it for me, but I was too foolish to see the subtle signs so a harsher one came after. How foolish I was to think I could lie and hide from you. I mean….you’re God! If anyone knew of my true struggle and issue it was you.  I’m glad you’re faithful to give undeserved forgiveness, I pray through this….really my first time being totally honest with this struggle, that its the first step toward true freedom. You’ve been so faithful while I’ve wavered, but grace still abounds and for that I’m MORE than greatful. 
Pray for me as I do you, 

Peace.

2017💪🏾

At the beginning of this new year hits, I’ve been thinking about the direction I should walk in that’ll produce some form of growth. 2016 was a year of ups and downs,  but I’m not trying to repeat the same results. I found myself asking myself and God “who am I?”. While getting lost in places of inconsistency, frustration, and challenging experiences, I may have lost my identity.  So, for me I’m declaring 2017 as the Year of Discovering Self. You have to know you are before you where you’re going.

God led me to I Timothy 4:12, 14-15

12 Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.  14 Do not neglect your gift, which was given you through prophecy when the body of elders laid their hands on you. 15 Be diligent in these matters; give yourself wholly to them, so that everyone may see your progress. 

A major part of discovering self is recognizing your gifts and embracing them. Verse 15 tells us to give ourselves wholly to these gifts meaning: spend time developing, practicing, and working them. Knowing and working your gifts not only shows you a part of who you are but also makes your purpose clearer. Take time to discover your gifts and begin truly learn who you are this year!!!

Dangers of Porn

“18 Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body.

19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?

20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.”

1 Corinthians 6:18-20

I believe Porn is one device that Satan has crafted to target the masses with a false image of pleasure and excitement that hides sinister devices of lust of manipulation. It’s coming between marriages, effecting the way men handle and approach women, effecting the way women expect and desire to be treated, it is even causing havoc to those in the body of Christ with spiritual leaders being overcome by lust. Lust is a virus that contaminates the spirit first, then shows its true power through our thoughts and actions, Porn is just an avebue to spread this virus.  It has effected me as well, so it’s because of that exprience I felt a need to write about it.

What exactly is Fornication?

Fornication is basically anything that’s considered sexually immoral in the eyes of God. Adultery, prostitution, rape, and sex outside (and before) the sanctity of marriage. Interestingly enough, the Greek word for fornication is Porneia…which is where the term porn comes from. The clips and sites you watch that may seem harmless are actually full of the things that Paul clearly said we should be fleeing from, and he wasn’t saying that for no reason.

What makes Porn dangerous?

22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy, your whole body will be full of light”.

Matthew 6:22

Guarding your eyes against anything contrary to your spirit is vital, especially when it comes to fornication. Your eyes are the gateway to your mind, heart, and spirit…so whatever you watch potentially can manifest itself in your thoughts, feelings, and eventually your actions. Pornographic scenes contain so many different spirits that can enter into your gateway (eyes) and wreak havoc on your life from the inside out. The goal of these spirits is to simply destroy any Godliness in you and replace it with desires of the flesh. It’s IMPOSSIBLE to watch these things on a constant basis and maintain a healthy relationship with Christ, Sin and Holiness cannot co-exist, either one of the other will have the authority in your life.

LUST

The most obvious type of spirit that embodies porn is Lust. Through porn, the spirit of lust has run rampant in today’s society. Lust causes us to desire sex on an extreme level, making us uncomfortable the longer we go without it. It demands total control of your life. Whether it’s through sexual sin with someone, or masturbation, the spirit of lust will not stop pressuring you until you please it’s appetite..and then the cycle repeats itself! Watching people commit various acts of lust over and over again, not only causes us to desire the same thing, but it screws up our spirit and character when trying to love others. It’ll cause you to push potential partners away when they don’t do the things that you continue to watch, or look like the people on those sites. Lust will anchor itself in your heart and make you desire nothing more than pleasing and indulging yourself in sexual pleasure, which will also invite the spirit selfishness in your heart as well. These type of spirits almost never travel alone. The spirit of lust can lead you to a point where you will do almost anything to get that feeling pleased, disregarding anyone else but yourself.

Pervertedness

Watching porn consistently can open you up to the spirit of perversion, which in this case I’m referring to confusion or distortion. Porn can twist our views on love and the people we try to love. Porn actually spiritually attacks our views considering those subjects which shows itself true in our actions. We’ll begin to chase after women or men who look like the people we watch, we’ll begin to put those specific actions we see in the movies into our perfect description of what love and happiness really is. If already in a marriage, it can take you to a point of rejecting your spouse for the sites and movies, because porn has now taken its spot in your heart. And people may not able to see the effects porn has on you, but God looks past the front and straight into your heart.

“for the Lord seeth not as man seeth. For man looketh on the outward appearance, but the Lord looketh on the heart.”
1 Samuel 16:7
Bonuses!
As stated early, these spirits rarely travel alone. Porn often delivers spirits on sale, “buy one get one” type of deal! Along with extreme selfishness, porn opens you up to potentially spirits of rebellion, anger or resentment, even manipulation! Direct quotes from several famous serial killers (Jeffrey Dahmer,Ted Bundy, etc.) states that they either watched porn before hunting their victims or blamed porn for their murderous behavior. Not saying it’ll turn you into a murderer, but that’s just proof that shows the host of spirits that can run rampant in your life just from opening yourself up to the effects of Porn.
Porn has had its grips on my life in the past, it made abstaining from sex way harder than it needed to be, it changed my perception of beauty when it came to women , it distorted my desires for a marriage, and it caused my committment to women to waver. Whenever lust would call I would answer even when I didn’t want to! It DOES effect you whether you think so or not, and if you doubt that it does go without it for a month and see how things begin to change…from your thoughts, to your actions, even your conversations! It conflicts directly with your relationship with Christ and the struggle between the two within takes its toll on you eventually.
Undoubtedly, Satan’s mission through porn is to manipulate and control the masses through their desires for fornication. He wants to make us slaves to him through our own desires. Don’t allow him to keep you in his grip, stop subjecting yourself to these sites while continuing to struggle in your relationship with Christ. If you find yourself addicted to the rush of porn, you can break free! Call on Jesus and allow him to free you from the grips of lust, pray and actively voice your freedom, but seek Jesus for the power to break loose. We can’t break the chains ourselves, but it’s up to us to make the decision that allows Jesus to step in and set us free. Guard your mind, heart and spirit with the discipline of what you allow yourself to watch. Be blessed.
“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.”
Galatians 5:1

Before you decide to leave the church

A few days ago I read several blogs from young christians who were shunning the church, explaining how they have completely detached themselves from any involvement from the church completely. As I was reading, I began to really ponder on the fact that more and more christians are leaving the church…and the more I thought about it the more distraught I became of the idea. Could we possibly have a day where majority of believers abandon the church altogether and just sit home with their bibles and daily scripture statuses like everything is all good? While the thought of that makes my soul cringe, God gave me an illustration on The Church and its true purpose. (not “a church meaning a building, but “The Church” meaning the body of Christ). Just follow me for a second….

Put the idea of a hospital in your imagination. Who does it consist of? Doctors, nurses, receptionist, switchboard operators, security, tech team, the ambulance, and maintenance. Although its easy to think that all you need are doctors and nurses to run a hospital, in actuality without all these components running together you wouldn’t have a successful hospital at all. The purpose of the hospital is to house and treat the sick right? Without maintainance the hospital would be way too dirty to prevent disease, much less treat it. Without receptionist, the vital records of patients would never be kept. Without security the workers and patients alike would constantly be in danger, and without the ambulance they wouldnt be able to reach the sick that extend outside the walls of the hospital. All of these positions, working together as the parts of the body works together, they ensure that the purpose of the hospital gets fulfilled. In essence, the hospital itself really isn’t the building at all, but the staff that labors inside of it!

Now, imagine these people….doctors and nurses and other staff beginning to leave the hospital altogether. “I can do my own thing at home, I don’t need to be here, this isn’t for me, I dont like the other staff, I’m a doctor with or without it…”. Once more and more people begin to leave the hospital…it stops being a hospital because it can no longer fulfill its purpose. People with severe sicknesses will go to the hospital only seeing the doors closed shut because no one works there anymore! Emergency after emergency now falls on deaf ears because groups of people decided they didn’t want to work anymore. You see how bad that would be?

Whether you believe it or not, The Church HAS a purpose…to introduce healing to those who are suffering from the diseases caused by sin. Those that are lost and looking for peace should be able to come to The Church for their healing. People should be able to come among a community of believers and hear life changing testimonies, be part of earth-shaking worship sessions, and here pastors deliver the gospel that pushes them toward accepting Jesus and becoming healed. You think church is “unnecessary”? consider the apostles in Acts 2.

The Holy Spirit Through Numbers

  • Apostles faced a huge crowd of people as they preached the gospel
  • Through their unison with the Holy Spirit, they were able to all minister to all the different languages (about 14 different languages I believe)
  • Coming TOGETHER as the body of Christ can multiply your effect on the world

Peter’s Sermon

  • His sermon influenced 3,000 people to give their lives to Christ
  • Majority of people have given their life to Christ because of the convicting sermon they heard by a pastor
  • Jesus uses Pastors to convey his message to those who are seeking something other than what the world is offering them. Also, these messages refill the spirits of those already saved….we never get to a place where we don’t need to hear a word from The Lord.

Fellowship/Support

  • Toward the end of the chapter the newly saved people in the congregation began to fellowship with one another. Building friendships, making connections, and ministering to one another. Having believers you can connect with can greatly strengthen your relationship with Christ! (Lions often isolate THEN pounce, stop thinking you just too independent to stay with the flock…Satan will convince you be isolated so attacking you gets that much easier)
  • They also began selling their possessions and distributing them among those in the congregation that were lacking. The body of Christ was designed to support itself, those in church that are willing to help you can’t, because you’re too good to be there! Helping each other in need is what will make The Church powerful again, the body being healthy with Love circulating through its veins!

Now I know there are a LOT of corrupted churches out here…I know this. But there are also corrupted doctors and bosses, bet that wont stop you from going to the hospital when you’re sick, or to your job when you know them bills on the way! If you have been hurt and mistreated by a church, please, find another one! As a christian you will never operate to your fullest potential in Christ while being completely isolated from the body of Christ. What use is your arm if it becomes detached from your body? What use are you to the kingdom detached from the body? Don’t let satan trick you into isolation

Acts 2:41-47

“Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day. They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles.  All the believers were together and had everything in common.  They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts.They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.”

Peace 

A Warning from God

Two nights ago I had one of the most realistic dreams I’ve ever had and it literally kept me up all night. I feel like it should be shared so for whoever it’s for I hope it serves its purpose.  I won’t get into every detail of the dream but just highlight the main points.

Anyway, so in the dream me and a group of people lived in this solid gold forest. Everything was gold, the trees, leaves, grass, even the animals in the forest were gold. This forest had one particular path going straight though the middle, the only way in and out. It was an extremely peaceful, safe, secure, joyful type of place. We were all very happy and fully provided for.

For some strange reason, we all grouped up and walked out of the forest and onto this HUGE estate. The property was unreal, I’m talking pools, monuments, very expensive cars and bikes, greenest grass I’ve ever seen, the works! We continued to walk into the mansion on the property which as about four stories high. This place was filled with things I’ve never seen but somehow knew what they were in my dream. Rare gold, silver, and jade statues, top of the line technology in every room, huge flat screens, fire places decked with marble, exotic fabrics from different countries, bedrooms the size of apartments, the place was very very nice.

The more we walked around, the more we fell in love with everything, I remember some people in the group expressing how “this is way better than the forest, im never going back” although my best friend and my mentor in the dream stayed pretty skeptical of everything. Out of nowhere however, chaos immediately began to erupt. Things left and right began to catch on fire. The fire spread so fast that it wasn’t long before we were surrounded by flames. The ceiling began caving in and falling on top of people, the walls started to collapse and an earthquake was tearing apart the floor. It was terrifying, the extreme heat from the fire made it hard focus, the falling ceiling kept you looking up in fear, you couldn’t lean on anything for support because nothing was stable. Chaos, fear, confusion, destruction, panicking, death all happening at once when everythng was completely fine only moments before.

People began to die trying to escape, most tried to grab certain possessions and take them out the house but none of them survived to complete the goal, I was separated from my friend and mentor and left alone trying to escape. Suddenly I found a trail that led to a safe way out the house which was left by mentor and I managed to get out but what I saw saddened me. Outside of the house I seen nothing but bodies, the bodies of all who were there with me, including my friend and my mentor. I was the only one left. Something told me I needed to get back to where I belonged, back to the forest, so I started to head back. On the way there I stopped, half of me wanted to check the bodies again for a survivor, the other half wanted to keep going. At that moment I split into two different me’s, one went back and the other kept going toward the forest. The me that went back (stubborn me) checked the bodies again but yet found no life. I looked up and seen that the door leading to the forest was closing. I ran as fast as I could but it closed before I could get there, I wasn’t worried because I was sure I (the me that went into the forest) would come back for me, surely he wouldn’t just leave me there. Days, weeks, months, literally years went by until I was an old man standing at the door long realizing that I was stuck here outside of my home forever among the bones of those I used to live with.

I believe this has been a warning from God, to a generation of people fully indulged in a materialitic type of lifestyle. It’s a trap, Satan is using the things of this world to work as a Venus Fly Trap..luring you in with inticing things just to clamp down on you when your guard is dropped. 

People….leaving the safety of God for the things of this world is a DANGEROUS move. These things, material things, they’re all temporal, here today and gone tomorrow. They guarantee you no peace, love, stability, protection, or life! They cannot sustain you and its all headed for destruction anyway. The longer you stay away from the presence of God, the more you begin to believe that you are better off without him, which sets you up from satan to strike you. You can’t worship God and the world, you cant bring things of the world into your relationship with God. The choice is “either or” there is no “and” in this process. Don’t let material things become your new god.

 

 

Preparation For Greater

1 Samuel 17:33-37

“And Saul said to David, Thou art not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him: for thou art but a youth, and he a man of war from his youth.

And David said unto Saul, Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock:

And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him.

Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God.

David said moreover, The Lord that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. And Saul said unto David, Go, and the Lord be with thee.”

There was an incident that occurred with one of my brothers during undergrad where he had locked himself in a bathroom and was talking about the decision to commit suicide. When I, along with others, had heard what was happening we immediately rushed to where he was and began to heavily pray against that spirit for well over an hour until he had stepped out of the bathroom unharmed. It was such a scary moment I’ll never forget, not entirely because of the thought of him taking his own life, but also because of how passionately and forcefully we prayed for that amount of time. It was draining and I couldn’t really move afterwards, but it was because of my own experience with suicide while I was a teenager that sparked the passion to pray so heavenly against that spirit. Had I not gone through that for myself, I would have lacked not only the extra boost of passion to see him through, but also the knowledge of some of the thoughts, feelings, and heaviness that goes into a suicide type of mindset.

We see in the scriptures that David was clearly unafraid to face the giant Goliath head on. detailed in the chapter, the other soldiers were terrified, looking at Goliath’s size and weapons, fear completely took them over. But why? These weren’t first time soldiers, they have more than likely killed other soldiers in past battles. Soldiers (who were grown men) who has killed and fought before were too scared to fight, yet David (a teenager) who has killed one lion and one bear was unfazed by the threat ahead of him. The answer lies in what both the soldiers and David relied upon in battle, while the soldiers relied on their fighting skills, armor, and weapons, David relied on one thing only….God. David’s strength is solely linked to his faith in God which he showed when he said “…moreover, The Lord that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine.”

I always wonder why God has me go through certain situation and hardships, but one thing to remember is that we can only see small moments of God’s grand plan for our lives. Some of the places God has for us to go, we cant enter in without valuable experience and training first. You cant excel in a sport with practicing, you cant get the best grades without studying, and you cant handle heavy spiritual assignments without heavy spiritual preparation. David wasn’t looking for trouble, but the lion and bear came to him and tried to steal something dear to him. You don’t have to be in a place of trouble for trouble to come your way, but how you handle it determines if its a lesson learned or a lesson missed. The lion and bear was not a test on David’s strength or bravery, but a test on his faith because it was his faith and his faith alone that defeated Goliath. 

You might be facing a hardship right now, but its not for your destruction. God may be adding another skill to your spirit for something much bigger to conquer down the road. David was only a boy when he faced the lion, bear, and Goliath, so it doesn’t matter who you are or what you believe to have or lack, any situation that crosses your path can be overcome if you just put your faith in the one who conquers all!

Let it gooooo, let it goooo

Year after year this man went up from his town to worship and sacrifice to the Lord Almighty at Shiloh,where Hophni and Phinehas, the two sons of Eli, were priests of the Lord.  Whenever the day came for Elkanah to sacrifice, he would give portions of the meat to his wife Peninnah and to all her sons and daughters.  But to Hannah he gave a double portion because he loved her, and the Lord had closed her womb. Because the Lord had closed Hannah’s womb, her rival kept provoking her in order to irritate her. This went on year after year. Whenever Hannah went up to the house of the Lord, her rival provoked her till she wept and would not eat.  Her husband Elkanah would say to her, “Hannah, why are you weeping? Why don’t you eat? Why are you downhearted? Don’t I mean more to you than ten sons?”

1 Samuel 1:3-8

So I’ve started reading 1 Samuel and the first chapter really had me thinking about some of the women I know who seem to be holding on to feelings of worthlessness or inadequacy…kind of what Hannah was going through in this chapter. Back in those times, a woman was measured in worth by how many children should could give her husband, so if a woman was barren she was looked upon as basically worthless. Even though her husband Elkanah would give her a double portion of meat from his sacrifice to God, she couldn’t even eat and enjoy it because of her in ability to produce children. This is one reason why holding on to worthlessness is dangerous.  (it causes us to develop tunnel vision for a blessing we think we should have, thus resulting in a blind eye to the blessings we are already receiving.) 

If that wasn’t enough, the other wife Peninnah would constantly taunt Hannah for not producing any children, adding insult to injury. You know women can be oh so petty towards each other. Second reason why it’s dangerous to hold on to worthlessness (The enemy will recognize your feelings of worthlessness and constantly remind you of what you don’t have, adding fuel to its fire. We give him power to strengthen that feeling the longer we continue to hold on to it).  

Hannah’s husband loved her dearly, in fact, in those times when you were offered a double portion of meat from a sacrifice it was a symbol of endearment. He didn’t do this for his other wife, but she still felt worthless nevertheless. It had gotten to the point over the years where Elkanah pleaded to Hannah “Hannah, why are you weeping? Why don’t you eat? Why are you downhearted? Don’t I mean more to you than ten sons?” He felt that even though he was going over and beyond for her, her worthless feelings toward herself prevented her from appreciating his offerings at all because it wasn’t what she desired the most. Third reason why it’s dangerous to hold on to worthlessness (it can cause us to take God and his blessings for granted, we won’t appreciate the things he does for us because it’s not that ONE thing our focus is stuck on.)

Once when they had finished eating and drinking in Shiloh, Hannah stood up. Now Eli the priest was sitting on his chair by the doorpost of the Lord’s house. 10 In her deep anguish Hannah prayed to theLord, weeping bitterly. 11 And she made a vow, saying, “Lord Almighty, if you will only look on your servant’s misery and remember me, and not forget your servant but give her a son, then I will give him to the Lord for all the days of his life, and no razor will ever be used on his head.”As she kept on praying to the Lord, Eli observed her mouth.  Hannah was praying in her heart, and her lips were moving but her voice was not heard. Eli thought she was drunk  and said to her, “How long are you going to stay drunk? Put away your wine.”“Not so, my lord,” Hannah replied, “I am a woman who is deeply troubled. I have not been drinking wine or beer; I was pouring out my soul to the Lord.  Do not take your servant for a wicked woman; I have been praying here out of my great anguish and grief.”Eli answered, “Go in peace, and may the God of Israel grant you what you have asked of him.”She said, “May your servant find favor in your eyes.” Then she went her way and ate something, and her face was no longer downcast.Early the next morning they arose and worshiped before the Lord and then went back to their home at Ramah. Elkanah made love to his wife Hannah, and the Lord remembered her. So in the course of time Hannah became pregnant and gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel, saying, “Because I asked the Lord for him.”

1 Samuel 1:9-20

After years of holding on this terrible feeling she finally decided to let it go and give it to God! She walked in the temple and completely poured her heart out to God, so much so that Eli thought she was drunk. She didn’t care how she looked to whoever seen her, she wanted to get in the face of God because she recognize that’s where she needed to release. All the years of built up frustration and fatigue from carrying around that burden of worthlessness released with a heart felt cry to God…and he heard her! Hannah went home, made love to her husband and became pregnant with a son whom she dedicated back to God before having even more children. She went before God and presented her whole heart, and he blessed her with her request of a child AND then some with more children!

I believe God has things stored for us that exceeds our own desires and requests, but our hearts have no room to receive them because we continue to hold on to feelings of worthlessness deep within us. God wants our whole heart, not a piece of it while other portions are stuck on the things we wished we had, money we wished we made, or that person we wish we were with. Release those burdens to God, go to him and give him all of you in prayer. Prepare your heart and spirit to receive the blessings of God. 

So I creep

 

“If a man divorces his wife
    and she leaves him and marries another man,
should he return to her again?
    Would not the land be completely defiled?
But you have lived as a prostitute with many lovers—
    would you now return to me?”
declares the Lord.

Jeremiah 3:1

Have you ever had someone try to back into your life, but because they have been involved with so many people apart from you that you view them differently? Not as attractive, not as appealing, the initial glow you noticed about them has suddenly dimmed down? Often times the thought of someone we cared about indulging themselves into many other people makes them almost disgusting or defiled.

Defile means: to make foul, dirty, or unclean; pollute; taint; or debase. To make impure.

In the world we live in today, it’s really not hard at all to slip out of a relationship with God every now and then to start flirting with outside sources. T.V watching, social media, work, sports, money, sex, drugs, people, admiration and many other things can quickly move God to the back seats of our lives. They tend to give us a “fulfilling” feeling until the feeling tank runs on E and we run to it again to get another dose. Sliding God to the back burner for these temporary pleasures is equivalent to leaving someone you love, sleeping around, and then running to them hoping they take you back. We actually become like a spiritual whore, jumping from lover to lover hurting the only person that loves us unconditionally.

These actions will cause a division between us and God to form. We become distant spiritually, which produces a disconnect in his power in our lives. We become less like him and more like the things we run too that replaces him in our lives. We leave the protection of his presence and expose ourselves to the dangers of sin and confusion. God becomes increasingly like a stranger while these idols in our lives gain power. I know personally, I knew God was faithful to forgive me so I would run to anything that felt good because of that. But this hurts God and you cannot claim to love God on Sunday, when you blatantly ignore him Mon-Sat. That’s not love and God is certainly not a fool, he knows who’s real and who’s far from him.

God IS faithful to forgive a heart that’s true in repentance, however, purposefully creeping on God should’t be a daily activity for anyone who loves him. Matthew 15:8 says “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me“. Creeping on God can leave us defiled with feelings of guilt, shame, and sorrow. Let’s not give him the run around, keep him first and stay faithful….as he constantly does for us. Such an undeserving privilege.

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Broken heart

Staying Free

When someone is released from prison, the feeling of finally being on the right side of freedom can be overwhelmingly powerful. But, freedom comes with a responsibility, for we know if that same person violates a law, they could end up right back in prison. Obeying the laws to remain free is mandatory , and obedience takes discipline.

Galatians 2:18 “For if I rebuild what I destroyed, then I really would be a lawbreaker”

Paul is telling us something that is KEY to remaining in the freedom of Christ…we cant begin to dwell back into the bad situation we prayed deliverance from! A person who goes back to the habit that Christ pulled them from is described here as a lawbreaker, and the consequences of breaking the law is prisoner to that same habit. Often I would find myself constantly praying to Jesus to destroy certain prisons I was trapped in (Lust, selfishness, pornography, laziness, etc.) and he would answer! But a few weeks following, I would begin to gather the bricks, putting some together, and before I knew it I had rebuilt the prison I wanted so desperately to be freed from! Jesus died so that we could leave the prison of sin and walk in freedom, but its up to us to stay obedient to remain free.

There is no long lasting freedom without obedience, only temporary visitations from prison. You won’t walk free from fornication if you keep doing the things that lead to it, you won’t walk free from selfishness if you refuse to give, you won’t walk in freedom from pride if you refuse to humble yourself. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (2 Corinthians 3:17).  Follow Jesus in obedience and you’ll always be in the presence of freedom.

“Obedience is the substance that freedom is made of”