Woman and The Compass

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Photo by Heidi Sandstrom. on Unsplash.

A wise woman once told me that my life is like a compass.

My view is the panorama of what I see every day, to the North, East and to the West. The North, she says, is my future and the South is the past.

She said to me that the North is where I must look ahead, keeping my eyes on Jesus, as He leads me in the way that I should go. The South is behind me and I am to never turn back, only to look to learn from my experiences.

The good experiences are meant to be memories that I collect from the places I go and the people that I meet. No one can take those good experiences and memories away from me, because they are my gift from God. They are mine.

As for those bad experiences– those that came by wrong decisions, mistakes or hurts caused by myself or others– I’m to learn from those moments, forgive and give them to God and let Him heal my heart.

She said that I can’t stay stuck in the past– whether good or bad– but that I need to keep moving forward in Jesus Christ.

That special woman gave me a gem on that day that I will carry with me for the rest of my life. Now when I reach any crossroads, I remember about the compass she told me about and call out to God as His Word says in Jeremiah 6:16:

Thus says the LORD, “Stand by the ways and see and ask for the ancient paths, Where the good way is, and walk in it; And you will find rest for your souls. But they said, ‘We will not walk in it.’

Doing this, I find comfort in the Lord, as He always gently leads me in the way I should go in Jesus Christ.

It is He who says to every wanderer:

Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. Matthew 11:28-30.

I’ll always remember this woman and cherish her with these special words in my heart. I know you’d love her too if you’d ever get the chance to know her. But I atleast hope you can appreciate these words of wisdom that I’ve come to cherish, and consider the compass– that when things get tough, always look ahead to Jesus who is our Compass in this hard but good life.

Come Home and Rest

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Photos by TheFreak1337 on Pixabay.

There is a physical place where we can run in to find rest and refuge. We call that place home. It shelters us from the storms and dangers of the world outside. When we come home, we lock the door and have faith that we are safe inside. We don’t worry about robbers, fires or flooding. When we lay down, we expect that our loved ones will sleep with rest and comfort without fear that any of the above would shake us out of our home. The Bible talks about a door, a home, and a kingdom. All of which is our place of rest where we run to in Jesus Christ here on earth.

Jesus is the door that lets us into our home in the Father.

John 10:7-9 says that Jesus is the door of the sheep,

“All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.”

In verse two above, Jesus says that

“But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. “Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.”

Jesus himself is the door of the sheep, and we are his sheep. He calls us by name, but how many of us really hear his voice?

“All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned, every one, to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.” (Isaiah 53:6)

We are like these sheep who quickly run away to the voice of a stranger and disregard the voice of our gentle shepherd who calls us home into safety. Then we wonder why we get hurt or things don’t go our way. Maybe it’s because we run away from the door of our safety. Maybe you say to yourself, but how do I know the voice of the Father? Well He’s here calling to you from the door of His home saying,

“Today, if you will hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.” (Hebrews 3:8)

Jesus is the home we enter in to find God’s rest. The writer of Hebrews says in chapter 3:1 to consider the Apostle and the High Priest of our confession, Christ Jesus. The Apostle is the builder of our house, and the High Priest is the Head of our household. For Jesus is the one who builds our house. Our house is our very own body. For our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, and He dwells in it (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). Jesus holds honor in our house.

For the Bible says, “But Christ as a Son over His own house, whose house we are if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end.” (Hebrews 3:6)

If you have heard God’s voice and he has given you a Word, you need to come home and rest. We must honor Jesus and let him build up our life as He knows best. Many times we may get worried that the promise is taking too long to come. Or we might try to help God with the vision He said He has for us. But our job is to rest in God’s presence by being faithful to The Builder and Head of our household. How are we faithful? We are confident to the end, rejoicing in the hope that God has given us. We take it day by day trusting in God’s faithfulness (Psalm 37:3-8).

“For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end.” (Hebrews 3:14)

“Today, if you will hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.” (Hebrews 3:8)

Don’t be like the disobedient sheep of Israel who tested God in the wilderness. God was angry with them for their disobedience. They chose not to believe. They saw God’s Works, His Miracles; they heard His voice, and still they went astray in their hearts. Belief in God’s word is a decision that we make daily, and this is another way we show our faithfulness to the Lord.

“They have not known His Ways, so He swore in His wrath they shall not enter His rest.” (Hebrews 3:9-11)

And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest… but to those who did not obey? So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief (Hebrews 3:18-19). We can see that unbelief and disobedience run hand in hand. Therefore since a promise remains of entering his rest, let us fear lest any of you seem to have come short of it (Hebrews 4:1). This rest is spoken of in a certain place of the seventh day in this way: and God rested on the seventh day from all His works. He also designates a certain day, saying in David, “Today” after such a long time, as it has been said: “Today if you will hear His voice, do not harden your hearts.” (Hebrews 4:7)

The seventh day refers to the Sabbath. Sabbath comes from the Hebrew word Sabat which means that after God finished the creation of the world on the Seventh day, He rested. God’s energy is inexhaustible, but to say that He rested simply means He ceased working. He dropped what He was doing. (Please read Isaiah 58:13-14).

Jesus is our Sabat day, everday. We come to Jesus to rest in our souls and to drop the work that makes our minds run hundreds of miles an hour! God wants us to stop our worrying, to stop trying to make things happen, to stop trying to open our own doors, to stop trying to justify ourselves with our own works, and to stop tearing each other down, but to let His Holy Spirit build us up in the House of Christ. I repeat, we are the temple of the Holy Spirit and He dwells in us, so is Christ a Son over His own house, whose we are if we hold fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm to the end.

Therefore, we have come to the Kingdom of God, let us then seek the Kingdom of God and his righteousness first, and all these things will be added unto us (Matthew 6:33).

Hebrews 12:18-29 explains the differences between the kingdoms that the Israelites came to in the time of Moses and the Kingdom that Jesus speaks of in the gospels.  Though the Israelites came to a physical mountain, they were afraid because of God’s booming voice of judgement that made the mountain burn with fire and that darkened the sky. It filled the the air with sounds of trumpets that even made Moses tremble!

However, in verse twenty-two of chapter twelve, the Bible says we have not come to that mountain, but to Mount Zion, the City of the Living God! Mount Zion, literally translated means refuge, or fortress.

Mount Zion is not the same mountain that the Israelites came to but could not find shelter because of their disobedience and fear of God’s judgement. Rather, it is the Mountain of God’s Grace.

The Bible says that there is none righteous, not one who understands; for we all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. But we are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus (Romans 3:10, 22-24). The righteousness that God offers us through Jesus gives us the assurance to enter into His rest and to rejoice in the confidence of our hope to the end. We don’t have to work where Jesus already set us free. Instead we drop what we know God is telling us to let go, and rest.

The Lord Himself says to you, “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30). For I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me (John 14:6).

If you have heard God’s voice today, do not harden your hearts to the Lord. Don’t be like the foolish, unbelieving sheep who run in the opposite direction from the Door of Hope. Instead, come in and enter into His Home of Rest, find refuge in the Kindgom of God, through Jesus Christ.

Come Home and Rest.

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Photo by geralt on Pixabay.

 

Disclaimer: I am not a scholar or a theologian, I’m just a repentant sinner who has a personal relationship with her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. ❤

The Imperfect Christian

 

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This is my original photo.

 

Hey guys, I’m back!

I apologize for being MIA for the past few months, but it was a time of learning, growth, deliverance, and discovery of myself in Christ.

Between October and November I went through a really dark valley that brought me into a seemingly, hopeless season of depression. During this time I didn’t understand what was happening to me and why I couldn’t recognize my own reflection in the mirror, or why my eyes were so dark. I couldn’t even bring myself to smile without bursting into tears. I was miserable. And it was because for a moment, I lost my faith. I almost lost myself.

God permitted me to hit rock bottom.

But He never left my side for a moment.

The Lord used a sister in Christ to come to my house one of those restless nights, and I poured out my heart to her. She asked me, what was wrong.. The only words that I could muster were “I just feel so lonely!..” She caught me in her arms, cradled me like a baby and I wept as she began to battle for my life in prayer. When she was done, she looked at me square in the face and said to me with authority, “you need to fast. You need to battle and fight for your life! God has a great purpose for you but the enemy will use you to destroy you if you let him. If you don’t fight, you will commit suicide in this very room. You are a warrior.”

I’m not going to lie to you, I felt the fear of the Lord as she prophesied those words over me. I knew that the devil is real, I know that demons are real and that hell is real. But I also knew Jesus is real and He came to disarm the power of Satan and his demons at the cross, and more than that, Jesus TRIUMPHED over them (Colossians 2:15). For everything that Satan came to steal, to kill, and to destroy in our lives, Jesus came to give us back in life, and life in abundance (John 10:10) and that means leading us to freedom through the valley of the shadow of death here on earth.

He promises to give us rest. Peace. Joy. (Hewbrews 4:1, John 14:27, 15:10-11)

That very night I was decided. I was not going to take the enemies attacks lying down anymore. I entered into a fast for two weeks and Jesus delivered me from the spirit of fear (1 Timothy 1:7, 1 John 4:18) . The spirit didn’t leave on happy terms, but unfortunately, upon eviction, it left me with a staph infection on my tailbone. I couldn’t sit or lie down for a week, and had to go through surgery to get the infection drained out. The timing was no coincidence either. I already had a trip planned for months to go out to Costa Rica, and left about a week after the surgery.

By the grace of God I was healed in time to be able to sit comfortably for the six hour journey. I was still on medication and still a little sore from the operation but that didn’t stop me from participating in the Christmas activities that I so longed to be apart of since last June! I danced and sang in the Christmas musical without any pain or discomfort and by that time I  was completely healed!

I had a lot of fun celebrating Christmas and New Years with my Costa Rican family. But I also received necessary correction from the Lord while I was there. From the very first sermon since arriving, He confronted my disobedient and unbelieving heart (Hebrews 3:7-11). He helped me understand that He will never leave me nor forsake me, and that His promises are as secure as any written contract, but His are so much more valid than any human contract because it is impossible for Him to lie and because He always has the final say (Hebrews 6:15-18; 13:5-6). By the the end of the trip, the Lord ministered to my heart and promised to fulfill the desires of my heart in short time.

With that being, I returned to the States in time for classes to start in January. I didn’t come back the same, but with a fire that burned deep down in my belly. I returned with a joy that lit up my face, and with confidence that what the Lord said will happen, will happen in due time.

As I came back, The Holy Spirit continued to show me in God’s Word how to be faithful (Hebrews 3:14-15), how to rest in Jesus (Matthew 11:28-30; Hebrews 4: 6-10), how to be generous (Isaiah 58: 6-14, 2 Corinthians 9:6-15), how to love others and how to love myself (Romans 13:8-14); not care what other people think about me (Isaiah 2:22; Psalm 146: 3-5; Galatians 1:9-10) and how to be content (1 Corinthians 7: 22-23; Philippians 4:12-13). These are just a few of the many things the Holy Spirit has cooking in my heart…

Then today after prayer, after a moment of crying at Jesus’ feet over some silly anxiety in my heart. I sat down on my bed and began to say to my friend the Holy Spirit, “I really don’t remember in detail where I was exactly this time last year. I mean, I know that I was sad, but I don’t know what was troubling my heart. But I do remember that I spent Valentine’s day with you at Holy Land. It was the day that I saw Jesus and almost ran out into the scene of the garden of Gethsemane to hug him! That was a beautiful memory we shared together…”

Then this thought hit me like an oncoming truck:

“If I don’t remember all of the details of everything that happened precisely one year ago, except that I was sad. Then whatever was troubling me a year ago doesn’t matter today. Neither will whatever troubles me now, matter in a year from now…

And what if tomorrow never comes? What if Jesus returns for me before then in the rapture. Then none of it matters!”

The apostle Paul must have had the same revelation when he wrote this letter to the Philippians:

But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which is from God by faith; 10 that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings, being conformed to His death,

Philippians 3:7-10

I even agree with what the Holy Spirit inspired Paul to write in verses 11 through 14:

I don’t expect myself to have been perfected in the knowledge of what I’ve learned in the span of these past months, but I do know that I’m still Christ’s work in progress– as we all are until we come to stand before the throne of God, face-to-face before the Master and give an account to Him of all the things we’ve done in this life (2 Corinthians 5:10; Philippians 3:13-14). Only then will we completely understand the grand scheme of His plan (Isaiah 55:6-12). All that will be left for us to do is just love Him, and remain in awe of Him for all of eternity (Revelation 22:13, 17).

I’m not a scholar or a theologian. I’m just a repentant sinner who has a personal relationship with her Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

I love you all, but Jesus loves you more!