Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Day 27- Walking after the Spirit

Today my challenge is to find ways to reverance and be encouraging to my husband.
Eph 5:33 Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife [see] that she reverence [her] husband.

Eph 5:22 Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord
I am really under convition that my walk is not what it should be in my marriage. My attitude and gratefulness would be a good start. I am supposed to be his helpmeet but how many times have I been that grudgingly?

God created the husband and wife unit in the beginning. This was the message that was preached on Sunday night that really helped and encouraged me. God meant for this bond between husband and wife to be the strongest and most important relationship of human relationships.  God didn't create children first. He created man and woman so they could then have children. The family comes after the husband and wife bond. It is where all other relationships come from. We tend to react to all our relationships in life based on how we were taught through our parents example.

The Bible says we are to reverance and submit to our husbands as unto the Lord.
I know I need to seriously work on the reverence. I love my husband, he is a good guy. I sometimes get frustrated with our relationship because we don't have a strong spiritual life in our marriage. God is there but Dh doesn't share too much of what God is doing in his life. I crave more.

Praying of course is key, and after the message Sunday I am encouraged that He wants the same for us. To be spiritually united and on the same page.

As I said the marriage relationship is supposed to be the strongest relationship we can have with another human being. Two become one flesh. That is pretty amazing. There is some kind of soul union that occures that should never be broken. What God puts together no one should tear apart. It is a sacred covenant. That is why the Devil, the flesh, and the world fight so hard to destroy it. 

We rebel against the sacred in our flesh. We want to be independant of responsibility and life long commitment. We're tied down, That is what our flesh will tell us. The truth and reality is so much the opposite.

God created husband and wife so, together, they can be more than conquerers. We are made to subdue the earth together. We weren't supposed to be this broken, dysfuntional, "sort of, if I feel like it " union. We are meant to put the other's needs first and lift each other up.

The key, of course is if we are both putting God at the center. Nothing can withstand the threefold cord of God, husband, and wife.

Praying together would be a good start. We had started doing that at one point but somewhere along the way got too busy. Time to get that up an going again.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Day 26- Walking after the Spirit- Power

We have POWER!
Literally I have power after the storm Sandy hit. I admit I got a little nervous with this storm
 After last year having two storms that left us without power we were a little more paranoid this time around. We had water, hubby bought a gas can, and we had extra food etc that we could eat without a stove. 

Praying for those that were hit hard by this storm.

Spiritually we have POWER! With God everything can be an object lesson. My brain cant get past its fleshiness sometimes, so God has to show that he is the shelter in the time of storm. Sometimes like a two by four hitting me over the head he teaches me His truth... God, our Father, does not leave us without His love and protection...Every waking moment is wasted without God in it.

That being said, I was struck this morning with the thought again that we must be about our Father's business with so much conviction and power behind it, that it made me weep with regret for so much time wasted not putting my hands to the work of God at every opportunity. Sometimes the mind resist the truth because it does not want to face the truth and have regret and the conviction to change. Change would mean stepping out of our comfort and relying on God alone.

What held me back was fear. But I have no excuse, for letting that be an excuse, because we have power. Jesus said it, so why do I doubt it (LK 10:19)? Power to tread-To walk. To tread on-To walk on. To step on, to crush. Power to walk each step. Power to walk on when we've fallen. Power the step on and crush the flesh, the enemy, the excuses, the fear. Get it Linda? Do you really get it this time?

Walking after the Spirit means walking after God's power. There is power in Him and through Him. Not me. I can do nothing... So true... but it's not by (Linda's) might nor by (Linda's) power but by MY Spirit saith the Lord.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Day 24 and 25- Walking after the Spirit- His hands extended

I didin't get a chance to post yesterday. Church was amazing yesterday. God really spoke to some things in my heart that I was being impatient with. He is such a personal God and knows exactly what is in my heart.

I just wanted to say that I may not be able to blog when hurricane Sandy hits. Depending on if we loose power.

This is the perfect opportunity to talk about being His hands extended in the time of storms. We have the opportunity to provide a light and an anchor for those caught up in trials in their life. You never know who is going through one at any given moment. You may see someone who is acting unkind or just apathetic. We may assume they are unkind people but we don't know what storm they may be caught up in.

I had overheard my father once say, when I was a teen, to another family member that I was just not a nice person. What he did not know was that I was in the deepest darkest depression at the time,and had planned on taking my life. I was misserable and therefore could not act in a way that would be deemed nice.

We dont know the torture someone may be going through even when someone is smiling. Some people put on  a good show and we are shocked to find later that they were going through something horrible.

The point of this is we need to reflect Jesus at all times as much as is possible. You just never know when your light will help chase away someones darkness. Assume at all times,that the people around you need Jesus. It's is the truth.
Be ready to be His hands extended.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Day 23- Walking after the Spirit- Intentional Attention

I am currently reading One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp along with the (in)Courage group Being Proverbs 31 woman on FB.
It is speaking to a lot of what I have been thinking and talking about here about living intentionally.
Living with thanksgiving in each moment.
Phil. 4:11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, [therewith] to be content.

To be content no matter what, requires seeing each moment as a gift from God. To live in thankfulness for each present minute. "To give thanks in this moment. The moments will add up." Ann writes.
To live that abundant life Jesus promises, requires our full attention.

It is so easy to let life slip away with each passing minute because we are too busy to stop and take notice of each step along the way. Living intentionally means bringing God into each moment. Inviting Him into our hustle and bustle makes us more aware of His grace, mercy and love. It also makes each moment an opportunity to seek His kingdom. To be about our Father's business as I have said before.
 We cannot ignore the leading of the Holy Spirit if we have Him wit us in this present moment. We have to be aware of the people around us if we intentionally invite Him to walk with us where we are. Our eyes will be opened to making each moment count. God gave us time and so often we let it slip away without notice or nod to His gift.
 I am reminded of Practicing the Presence of God by brother Lawrence.
"The time of business does not with me differ from the time of prayer, and in the noise and clatter of my kitchen . . . I possess God in as great tranquility as if I were upon my knees at the blessed sacrament."
Ps. 16:11 In thy presence is fulness of joy.

To be continually aware of Jesus and His presence is a goal everyone should be trying to obtain.
This is a very powerful yet simple thought, but not alsways easy to carry out. Life's worries and tasks can preoccupy our minds to the point where a whole hour can  go by without thougth of our Creator and His goodness toward us.

Time is precious and fleeting. We are here for short time on earth. Thankful attention to time and living intetionally in each moment brings us closer to Him.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Day 22 -Walking after the Spirit- Working out your salvation

Well after praising God about sleeping really well I went and had spicey food which sometimes bothers me and sometimes not. This time it did and I had two nights of not sleeping good. Oy!
I will get back on track tomorrow with getting up early.  I have today off so that was good.

With the East coast's impending storm I am thinking about spiritual storms and how to be prepared. When we work out our salvation we daily have to die to self; stayed prayed up; and keep our body, mind, and soul in a healthy place. (It's neat how all this is tying together and in the order that is has been going. Only God could do that.)
 To work out our bodies we have to make sure we have the right nutrition for our bodies to work at it's optimal level, and we have to be sure we are well rested. To work out our salvation we have to be certain we are feeding our souls all the right things, and rest in Jesus. Get rid of extra garbage in your life like you would get rid of unhealthy eating habbits.

Daily getting into the word cleanses our souls and feeds us. Entering in to that haven of rest with Jesus in communion of prayer gives us a refreshing to our spirit.

Psalm 91 is one of my favorites and I feel it really speaks to what we as Christians can hope in and rely on when resting in Jesus.
I love this verse especially. "Because thou hast made the LORD, [which is] my refuge, [even] the most High, thy habitation; " Resting in Jesus is abiding in Him. Making Him our habbitation. It does not mean sitting on our bottoms and doing nothing however.

Working out our salvation is work. We dye to self, take up our cross daily and choose to walk after God. To follow Jesus means getting out of our comfort zones and doing things we would not ordinarly do. This is where I get nervous. I am a reserved person and generally have trouble just going up to people to witness but I know I need to step out and do something.

To follow Jesus and walk after the Spirit is to look and act more like Jesus. To be about our Father's business. Not just to go to church on Sundays and a mid week service but to daily , and intentionally be like Jesus.

What does that look like in our lives?
Well I think it would look like the early church. I am reading  the Acts of the appostles to get the general idea. They did not live a comfortable life. They stepped out of their comfort zones and reached out to the people around them and brached out even further to reach others.

It is not going to be a comfortable thing to go on with Jesus but I am at the end of myself. That is where God needs me to be. If I am at the end of myself, then that is where Jesus begins. Not I but Christ liveth in me.
Gal. 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Day 21- Walking after the Spirit-Hurts

I can't believe I am finishing week three already.
I have been talking primarily about the mind this week because I think it is probably the largest issue we can struggle with. Our thoughts lead to actions.

I am not sure who the author of this is but thought it worth quoting.

Watch your thoughts; they become your words.
Watch your words; they become your actions.
Watch your actions; they become your habits.
Watch your habits; they become your character.
Watch your character: it becomes your destiny.

The Bible says to gaurd your heart because out of it comes the issues of life.  It can issue forth life or death. When we harbor bitterness, unforgiveness, anger, and jealousy in our hearts we will manifest those things eventually. God wants us free and clear of those things so His love can shine through in our lives.

I had to recently come to a place where I gave up all my hurts to God. It was not an easy thing but once I got to the place where I finally didn't want it there, I was able to give it all up  to God. I don't know why I held on to those hurts for so long. I think I held onto them because it was all I knew. It was a burden I accepted as a part of me. Like being a  victim was my identity.

I realized it was a lie because it is what stood in the way of me trusting God fully. It kept me from stepping out and serving God in the way He requires me to. My hurts may have shaped my life up to this point but it does not define who I am.
 God created me. He knows my identity. He defines who I am. He placed a substance in me that is Linda, His beloved child.

I am at a point where I can see the hurts in a new light. They are no longer a prison that keeps me from living an abundant life. They are now experiences that allow me to have empathy and compassion toward others who have walked that way too. It gives me a testimony to share. I am grateful for that testimony because it shows God's power in my life and brings him the glory He deserves.

Depressed, suicidal, anxious, tortured in thoughts, abused, bitter, easily swept up in storms, not anchored to anything. That was me.

Now I have peace and joy. Through the power of the Holy Spirit I was released, set free from all those things.

Shackled by a heavy burden
Beneath a load of guilt and shame
Then the hand of Jesus touched me
And now I am no longer the same

 He touched me,
Yes He touched me
And Oh the joy that floods my soul
Something happened and now I know
 He touched me and made me whole
Oh since I met this blessed Savior
 And since he cleansed and me whole
Oh I never cease to praise Him
I'll shout it while eternity rolls

Oh He touched me,
Yes He touched me
And oh the joy that floods my soul
Something happened and now I know
He touched me and made me whole

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Day 20- Walking after the Spirit

Rom. 8:6... To be spiritually minded is life and peace.

I feel like a normal person. Wow. What is that ?
It's such a great feeling to feel like I have myself on track. I have my house in order. literally. I have a clean house. Caught up on laundry. Spiritually I feel like I am on track too. I have not had any sleeping probelms since I started this. How awesome is that?

John 8:31-32 If ye continue in my word, then ye are mydisciples indeed, and  ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free.

What was the truth that I was missing all this time? " seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. "
I was so caught up in the problems I was having, that my vision was skewed.
I stopped putting God first because I let myself become defeated. I was tired and worn out, and let that steal my joy.

John 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have [it] more abundantly

My desire was simple, I wanted to get my house in order and get back on track with God. I just didn't see how I could achieve it when I was so worn out. It took God's help and just simply making up my mind to do something to change. Yes God will help us, but sometimes its not a wait and see option. Sometimes it's a get off your spiritual lazyboy chair and do something choice and it's a daily one.

Life abundatly can't happen without seeking God and His kingdom first. We might try to achieve it on our own through pleasing our own selfish desires, but it always leaves us with empty hands.
When God is first that is when satisfaction and fullness happens.

Praise the Lord for His never ending mercy and grace in my life. Praise Him for saving me. Praise Him for Him never ending patience.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Day 19- Walking after the Spirit

We talked a little about the mind the last two days.
I struggle with a negative mind and I have to pray often to get my thoughts in the right place. I have scriptures written out on index cards that are good ones to read to keep the mind in the right place.

Here is some homework for you. This is exercise for the mind and soul.  Look up the verses below. You can put them on index cards or in a notebook, tape them  on your mirror or somewhere in your house to remind you who you are in Christ.
Here is the link to an online bible resource.
Blue Letter Bible

I am the head. I am above only- Deut. 28:3
God helps me and is with me- Is 41:10, 13
I am betrothed- Hosea 2:19-20
I am becoming more like Jesus- Rom. 8:29
I am established in righteousness- Is 54:14
I have favor with God- Job 10:12
I am dwelt in by Christ Jesus- John 14:12
I have the comfort of his presence - John 14:18
I am anointed -  Is 61:1
I am an ambassedor for Christ- 2 Cor. 5:20
I am hiden with Christ- Col. 3:2-3
I am a part of His family- Eph 1:4-5
I can come boldly to God- Heb 4:6
He loves me with an everlasting love- Jer 31:3
I am being changed to be more like Him- 2 Cor. 3:18I am complete in Him- Col 2:10
I am accepted- Eph 1:6
I am inseperable from His Love- Rom. 8 :35

These are just a few. I listed about a third of what I have on index cards. I am reading through them again to keep my mind stayed on Him.

I also suggest reading through Rom 8. It is of course what we are refering to through this whole month with walking after the Spirit. It is one of those powerful chapters that really can inpact your thinking.

Remember to get in daily physical exercise too. Excercise helps to make the body feel good but also helps to elevate mood. I used to have problems with depression and one thing that I always was told was diet and excercise makes a difference.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Day 18- Walking after the Spirit- imaginations of the heart

I did my prayer walking in my appartment building. I enjoyed walking through the building and praying.What a work out! With each stair case I walked up to the top and back down. then  walked through what ever floor I was praying through. My legs were feeling it. THank God there are only three floors.
I got in trouble last week for putting tracts in the doorways of the appartments. I didn't think there would be any harm to a slip of paper being put in the doorway. The building managment tried to say they had a rule about it, but they don't do anything about the pizza coupons that get left in our doors.

Reading in the Bible I keep coming accross the phrase that the people of Israel were following after the imaginations of their own heart. As a result they went far from God.

The world will say follow your heart. But the Bible says...
Jer17:9  The heart [is] deceitful above all [things], and desperately wicked: who can know it?

We can't even trust our own heart to lead us in the right direction. Our heart will follow the carnal mind. Why? Because we are inherently selfish and always want our own way and our comfort.

 Rom 8:6 For to be carnally minded [is] death; but to be spiritually minded [is] life and peace.
8:7 Because the carnal mind [is] enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.

If we are following after the carnal life and fleshy living we will slip and go against God. In our flesh we are incapable of following God's law. That is why we need to have the Holy Spirit's power in our lives.

Invite the Holy Spirit each day to lead your life. 
Submit your thoughts today to Jesus and cleanse your mind with the word.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Day 16 and 17- Walking after the Spirit

Talking about the mind, body and spirit this week.
I have been trying to eat healthy. I did the Daniel fast last week wich for me was cutting out meat, dairy and eggs. I found I was able to do this and felt pretty good all week.
I am hoping to continue to eat less meat and more legumes, veggies etc. I also plan to start walking more this week. One way will be to prayer walk through my building. I going to be repeatedly doing stairs by going to sections upstairs then down and up again.  It should make a good work out.
I think the prayer aspect will give my mind something to keep it occupied and not get bored with the workout so easily. The Bible says to do everything as unto the Lord so incorporating prayer and walking together will be a good thing.

The mind is something I really need to get a handle on. My negative thinking tends to get the better of me. I want to get to a better place in my thinking that will be God honoring. It takes discipline to control the wandering negative mind. It also takes Jesus and help from the Holy Spirit.
The bible says to bring our thoughts into submission under Christ. Casting down imaginations and every high thing that tries to take control and replace the knowledge of God.
We need to take those wrong thoughts and cast them at the feet of Jesus. Take them captive instead of lettting htem take control of you.

2 Cor. 10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

Aligning our thinking to be in line with the Holy Spirit will mean we will be able to follow the Holy Spirit's leading more easily.

Is 26:3 Thou wilt keep [him] in perfect peace, [whose] mind [is] stayed [on thee]: because he trusteth in thee.

To keep the mind stayed is to tie your mind to Christ's. Keep in line by reading His word. Let it saturate your thinking. Battle negative thinking with the Word. That is how Jesus battled the Devil when He was being tempted by the Devil.

Praying for you this week in trying to get a handle on your thinking, your health and your spiritual health.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Day 15- Walking after the Spirit

Halfway there! woo hoo!
Now I have Bon Jovi Living on a Prayer stuck in my head. My brain tends to be weird like that. LOL
So today is the first day of week 3- I decided to go into the Body, Mind, Spirit this week and next week will be the working out our salvation.

One of the difficult struggles I have had is having issues with insomnia and being tired all the time. When your tired your resistance to not only physical attacks is low, but also spiritual ones. Satan had me bound as the song says. I was too tired to fight. I easily slipped into the spiritual doldrums.

Our bodies are our temple. We need to take care of them because that is where Jesus needs to abide. If our bodies are not in health then it makes our spiritual walk that much harder.

You can tell when I am in a bad place by how my house looks. I can't keep up with housework when I have no energy. I felt like I was constantly fighting the laundry monster and dishes vortex. I felt like I was going to disappear under the clutter that built up in my house. I would have maybe one good week a month where I got caught up and then, whamo! I was back to not sleeping. I became very discouraged and even depressed at times.

I kept praying for relief. I kept praying for healing. Nothing.

Then recently at church one of the messages was about how we have authority already for overcoming. The Bible said so.

Luke10:19Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.

Deut.28:13And the LORD shall make thee the head, and not the tail; and thou shalt be above only, and thou shalt not be beneath; if that thou hearken unto the commandments of the LORD thy God, which I command thee this day, to observe and to do [them]:

I think something just cliked. I realized I had let God slip to the back burner. God needs to be first no matter what. I realized I needed to make a change and that is why I started this 30 day walk.
I don't intend to stop after these 30 days. I am going to continue on with this challenge.
The spiritual is the leading cause of many of our problems but sometimes we get so caught up the the physical manifestations we forget about the spiritual.

That is where the mind connection comes in. We need to renew our minds daily or the carnal mind will take over. Its not a maybe, its a guarantee. If we are not prayed up, and in God's word daily we will start to slip up. It is a daily and even moment by moment struggle.
Our thinking plays such a huge roll in how we walk spiritually. We must submit our thinking to Christ.
Praying that this week will bless you as you continue your walk.

I will not be on tomorrow to post. I am going on a camping retreat with the ladies from church.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Day 14- Walking after the Spirit- dying to fear

Fear has been the biggest motivator in my life. I grew up walking on eggshells trying not to irritate my mother trying hard not to give any fuel to cause her anger to flare. Also to not give any fuel to my brother to bully.
I later did the same at school with the bullies there.
I became worse as I got out of school and I had to join the work force. By this time it became anxiety. There was no threat but I had such dread sometimes.
How do you dye to fear?
Fear is like a fire. If you give it fuel it will grow stronger. Our thinking is fuel. If we perseverate on our foreboding thoughts then that becomes fuel. Constantly playing bad possible outcomes in our head will make things worse.
What helps? Gods cleansing word, His Holy Spirit, and prayer. Truth can combat fear, that is why it is so vital to keep in God's word. Prayer brings us closer to God, and when God is near fear has to flee.
The Bible says perfect love casts out all fear. God's perfect love drawing near,is the cure. Daw near to Him and He will draw near to you.
Another way to combat fear is to do the opposite of what fear tells you to do. It starves the fear like covering a pot on fire with a lid will starve the flame. 
Of course I would be remiss if I didn't mention Water. We know water quenches a flame. Holy Spirit rain can quench fear. Get in God's presence and bask in His love. Invite the Holy Spirit with you when you go into a situation where fear threatens to overwhelm you. Ask the Holy Spirit to rain in your life.

It's not that you will never have fear again. Remember it is a daily choice to walk after the Spirit. There will be daily trials.
Jesus said not to worry about tomorrow because today will have it's own issues to deal with. Concentrate on each day. Be intentional. Bring Jesus with you in each step.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Day13- Walking after the Spirit-Dying to self

To  be able to die daily is a daily choice. The choice to walk after the spirit and not follow the carnal mind.
Choosing to do what is contrary to what is convenient or comfortable to us in the flesh.
I still chose to get up at 5:30 this morning when my flesh was groaning "Just one more hour of sleep".
That is a small example, by no means a huge trial but none the less it was a struggle this morning.
Then I had to choose to pray and read my Bible, despite my sleepiness. Then I had to choose to continue in my Daniel fasting when I ate breakfast. By this point in the fast I am being bombarded by temptation to eat meat. That turkey sandwich meat in the fridge seemed  particularly tempting last night, but I did not give in to it.
I just wanted to add that I chose a Daniel fast because of the reasoning behind the fast. It says he did not want to defile himself with the kings meat and wine. The theory is that the meat was sacrificed to idols and Daniel wanted no part in that.
 I feel that God has asked me through this 30 day spiritual walk to go through a cleansing process of leaving the world behind and following after the Spirit. That requires a dying process. I have to die to the desires of the world and continue to choose to walk in the opposite direction.
May the words of this song be our constant prayer and goal...


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Day 12-Walking after the Spirit- Dying to self-Thanking Him in everything

I firstly have to say to those who may be reading this, I am sorry I have not been going through and editing what I have been writting.  I am alloting only so much time to be on the computer so I realize there are lots of errors. I appologize just to  those who want nothing more than to go through and correct everyones spelling and grammatical errors when they read something. You know who you are. LOL

I had two days of not getting a good nights sleep. My stomach started bothering me like I had eaten habenaro peppers straight up, only I hadn't. I have had sleeping issues and stomach related issues for the last 3 years and so this is nothing new to me. Normally I would just sleep in and get on with my day, but the tiredness always lingered. I would some days be so wiped out feeling that I would get winded trying to do housework. I think I got into this frame of mind where I just excepted this as a part of my life, and stopped praying about it. It was making my day difficult. I would be groggy all day and I was really neglecting my time with God.
Last night when I started to have trouble getting to sleep, for the third night, I started to talk to God and say how much I really liked being able to get a good nights sleep and wake early so I could get in my bible and prayer time. Would you please help me fall asleep? Please? Nothing happened so I decided to get up and go pray instead of lay there. Somehow my time became a time of praise. I was thanking God for even the trials like this because I have Jesus. He is my best friend and if I get to be counted with Him even in this small trial , then I'd rather that then be unsaved and miserable. I finally some time after that was able to fall asleep, and I got early.
God turned my thinking around to a point where I really felt joy to be counted with Him. I know my trial wasn't a huge one compared to other peoples but having it go on so long it was disrupting my life.

Thankfulness is so vital to our walk with God.

Phil 4:6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.

Despite what my flesh would like it to say, It does not say in everything by prayer and supplication with complaining...
Attitude can lift us up or let us down.

We have to dye to our flesh and fleshy thinking. Negative thinking is directly from the flesh. The Bible says that the carnal mind equals death in Romans 8. For me the death was with the spiritual. I was thinking and feeling defeated, therefore I was defeated.
Dying to self puts things in the right perspective, no longer I but Christ that liveth in me, kind of thinking. God gave me a gift of praise and thanksgiving last night but also just the realization that He is my best friend. He will always be there to help me through.

I will be talking about thinking and attitude later but God just gave a little taste of a lesson ,so I had to share.
Just wanted to add that we will be getting more into Romans 8 as we get into the body, mind, spirit part next week.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Day 11- Walking after the Spirit- Thank God through Jesus-part two

I stopped yesterday because I left for church. Everything that was said at church are the things I have been writting about here so I know God is getting me on the right track.
I talked a little about complacency yesterday and how easy it is to get comfortable to the point of becoming lukewarm.
I don't want to be just doing "church", I want to be living it. I want to be alive through Christ and have it manifest in my life in a larger way.
We are the continuing Acts of the Appostles. The Bible says we are epistles. God's story continues in us. So why doesn't our lives look like the lives of the Apostles? We are God's children but we often don't act like it. We want our  benefits from God but don't want to step out of our comfort zone to be about our Father's business.
I am preaching to myself here. Even if no one else gets anything out of this at least I am doing something.
I want to hear "well done thou good and faithful servant". That is my goal and aim in life. I just want Jesus. I need Him more than anything. My life would be so messed up without him.

"where would I be you only know,
I'm glad you see through eyes of love,
A hopeless case an empty place if not for grace"

That is from a song, but so true for me.

Pick up your cross daily. Dying to self is no easy thing. The flesh will fight it every step of the way. It's easy to become discouraged and want to give up when you have failed God so many times. Again talking about myself.

Proverbs 24:16 For a just [man] falleth seven times, and riseth up again

It's in the rising  up again where victory is. I have failed so many times but hope and faith keeps me getting back up again. If I don't get up then Satan has won. I will slip back to the miserable person I was before I met Jesus. I will not go back there! Calvary was not in vain!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Day 9 and 10- Walking after the Spirit-Thank God through Jesus-part. 1

Rom 7: 24-25
O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.

Paul had serious struggles. Sometimes we look at the disciples and think they were somehow superhuman to be able to withstand the persecution they underwent. To live through torture and mocking haveing people turn against them, how can anyone live through it?
I think as an American I am so spoiled to the reality of being a Christian in this world. I have freedom of religion. I don't have to worship in secret with the threat of getting discovered at any moment. I don't have to worry about getting arrested, tortured or killed.
What does this have to do with Paul's statement above?...
It makes me wonder why I struggle so much in my spiritual walk when I do not have to face the problems and persecution that other Christians do.
The flesh is the answer. I think the reason why we Americans are so complacent in their worship and service to God is because we are so comfortable in this country. We really don't know what it is like to really be poor and hungry. We complain about minor things when people right now are being tortured and killed for serving Jesus.
I am talking about an having attitude and reality check here.
When the flesh gets comfortable then it is easy to be lulled into a place of complacency. It's a scary place to be because it sneaks up on you and before you know it you are just stuck in a routine. God is on the backburner and we just go through the motions. Being lukewarm is an awful thing.
I don't want to find out that my Chritianity was not real, but instead a means of making myself feel comfortable. Reality check.
We need to re-evaluate our motives and make certain we understand what it means to take up the cross daily. Dying to self is the goal of a Christian so that Christ lives through us. What does that look like in this busy hectic life we have created for ourselves? How large of a roll does God play in our day to day routines? How often do we Seek first the Kingdom rather than seeking first our comfort?

How do we combat complacency?
Through more of Jesus in our lives. Submitting the flesh to Jesus and steping out to do more for Him.
I am talking about witnessing primarily. I have occaisionally been able to  witness at work but I have to be honest that I don't when I am out and about in my everyday. I am not purposeful in my witnessing. I have a whole appartment building that I have not reached out to. I very rarely witness at the grocery store.
We on the spiritual battlegrounds everyday but we don't see it if we are too comfortable.
Look around Linda, so many souls that need the Lord.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Week 2-day 8- Walking after the Spirit-Fasting

I am so excited to start this second week.
This is going to be a challenge.

Fasting is about sacrificing self and submitting your will to God. Saying not my will but Thine be done. The flesh and our own will, wants to be selfish and satiate it's desires any chance it gets.

We really have to have our heart in the right place for fasting to be succesful

Isaiah 58:5-13
[Is] not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?
[Is it] not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house? when thou seest the naked, that thou cover him; and that thou hide not thyself from thine own flesh?
 Then shall thy light break forth as the morning, and thine health shall spring forth speedily: and thy righteousness shall go before thee; the glory of the LORD shall be thy rereward.
Then shalt thou call, and the LORD shall answer; thou shalt cry, and he shall say, Here I [am]. If thou take away from the midst of thee the yoke, the putting forth of the finger, and speaking vanity;
And [if] thou draw out thy soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall thy light rise in obscurity, and thy darkness [be] as the noonday:
And the LORD shall guide thee continually, and satisfy thy soul in drought, and make fat thy bones: and thou shalt be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters fail not.
And [they that shall be] of thee shall build the old waste places: thou shalt raise up the foundations of many generations; and thou shalt be called, The repairer of the breach, The restorer of paths to dwell in.
If thou turn away thy foot from the sabbath, [from] doing thy pleasure on my holy day; and call the sabbath a delight, the holy of the LORD, honourable; and shalt honour him, not doing thine own ways, nor finding thine own pleasure, nor speaking [thine own] words:

Here in Isaiah it shows that God wasn't looking for people to fast for their own selfish gain. He wants us to reach out to the lost, and hurting souls. It's not just about staying away from food, and sacrifice. It's the heart of the matter that counts in God's eyes.
If we fast we are doing it with a purpose of following God's will, God's plan. His plan will always be about His kingdom.

There are different ways of fasting. A full food fast and only drinking water. I partial fast skipping a meal or two. A Daniel fast which is not eating meat. Also there are things like media fasting. Such as no TV or ineternet for however long you plan to do it. I am doing this on Saturday.
I have chosen to do a Daniel fast this week. There is some debate as to what is specifically ok to eat or drink. I am doing basically a vegetarian diet this week. In the bible it says Daniel at pulse and drank only water.

Above are a couple of resources. The second looks like an add for a book but there is a food list.

You can prayerfully decide what kind of fast is for you. If you are planning on fasting this week please be certain that you are in good health to do so. Consult your physician if you have medical conditions such as diabetes, or are pregnant.

Give your heart to God this week and let him lead you.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Day 7- Walking after the Spirit- JESUS

I am happy with how this week has gone. We wemt over prayer this week. Talking about giving Him our time, confession, honoring Him , and basking in his presence. There is so much more that could be said on prayer. That could have been a 30 day focus all on it's own

Sometimes we get to a place where we don't know what to say in prayer. We might have something happen in a blink of an eye and the only thing we can do is say Jesus. There is power in His name. Devils still have to bow to that name. Sometimes we are at a loss for words and the only thing we can do is call on His name for help. Jesus help me! Is just as effective as some long drawn out prayer. When it's our hearts cry Jesus hears and takes notice.

Sometimes it is our selfish flesh that keeps us from being able to pray in God's will. Sometimes we don't know how to pray for a situation because our emotions in a situation are so overwhelming that we really loose our way and have no words left. That is where the Holy Spirit takes over and intercedes.

Rom. 8:26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

Praise God we have His Holy Spirit to step in.

Things to think on this weekend...
What goals have you set for yourself spiritually?
How are you going to accomplish them?

I hope you have been following along and making your own prayerful journey this week.
Let me know how you are doing.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Day 6-Walking in the Spirit- Basking

"Be still and know that I am God"

I am trying to take time to be still in prayer. Not just speak, but quiet myself and listen and just stay in his presence. This is another area where the mind wanders and discipline is necessary.
To quiet ourselves and focus on God is as simple as thinking on Him and keeping our mind stayed on Him. Simple in theory anyway. I find I have had to refocus myself by redirecting my wandering mind with praise. I sing a little or speak out loud praises. Then I think as though I am breathing in his presence with each breath. I think as though I am in his embrace. Try it and see what happens.
 Being still is a difficult practice. We get so caught up in the hustle and bustle of life that we feel like we are being unproductive if we are still. Some people can't stand silence and always have to have a tv or radio on in the background. Is it that they don't want to be alone with their thoughts? Do you think God is going to meet you with judgment and criticism for some fault or sin?
Pray first, confess anything you can think of and ask Him to reveal to you areas you may need to confess. Confess those, let them go once you have confessed, then be still and silent.
What happens when you are still and silent? Will the world fall apart if you take a few moments out of your time to be still with God? Will your thoughts bother you if you are without the background noise?
Your Lord and Savior just want to commune with you. He wants to love on you. Wont you let him do that with a stillness that says "I love just being with you Lord"

Not easy but worth every moment.

Take time to breath in Jesus' presence today. Bask in his love.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Day 5- Walking after the Spirit-discipline

Yesterday I had a nice morning. My husband and I went for a walk before he went off to work.
This morning was a little harder to get up. I got up at 5:30 mind you, but I almost turned over and fell back to sleep. This is the point where it will get harder to keep this up. It's easy in the begining to get started because of the initial enthusiasm, but when something has become a routine it becomes harder to keep it up.

Pushing through and being purposefull in what you set out to do for God is tough sometimes. When you just feel like taking a few more minutes of sleep or spend just a little more time on the computer doing things that aren't really that important, that is when you have to start disciplining yourself. The flesh is selfish and wants it's own way. We have to make a decision to continue on and and discipline ourselves. This is where we have to take up our cross daily and sacrifice our own comfort to follow Jesus.
Saturday will be a no computer no TV fast. I do this from time to time and sometimes for a week. So I will not be posting here Saturday.
Next week I will be doing a little more on fasting and will be doing a Daniel fast. I will post a few resources for that if anyone wants to know what it is or how to go about it.
It is for God that I am doing this, and because I want to be in a place where he can use me for whatever he wills for my life.

"Lord Whatever your doing in this season, don't do it without me"

Just adding this note:
When we start going forward with God trials will come. The devil will try to intimidate and tempt us to give up or give in. God will also allow things to come to test us and see just how serious are we with it. Today seems to be one of those days. I must be doing something right. I have to keep turning to Jesus. Give him my thoughts and emotions when these things happen. This is me preaching to myself. Sometimes that is what we have to do. Pray, preach to ourselves and pray some more.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Day 4-Walking in The Spirit- Mind wandering and Time wasters

I touched a little on how to pray. I think the most important thing is to put your heart mind and soul in God's hands when you are praying. In other words submitting to Him, giving your thoughts to him, and not allowing your mind to wander. It's one of those things that I struggle with. That is why it is so important to start prayer with his praise. It's an invitation for Him to draw near. Get in to His pressence. I usually start by singing. Yes I sing early in the morning. I live in an appartment and people can probably hear me, but oh well. No complaints so far. :) It helps me to start with praise and puts my heart in the right place.
Mind wandering can still happen when you have day ahead of you and your thinking of the many things you have to do. I kept thinking of what I would be writing today for example. Also, I thought of what I need to do for work today. What I did with those thoughts is used it as a prayer point. I asked for Gods help at work and his leading for writing this. Then I was able to put it in God's hands instead of worrying about the details.
The other things I need to tackle to make nmore time for God and for prayer is getting rid of time wasters. My biggest time waster is the computer. UGH! I spend time on things that I just don't need in my life. I am going to have to learn to be disciplined with my time. That means giving up things that take away from God and family.

What time wasters can you cut back on in your life that take you away from God and prayer?

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Walking in the Spirit-Day 3- Prayer

I am happy with yesterdays progress. I got up early got in my prayer and reading time and even went for a walk with hubby in the morning. The rest of the day I fasted. I want to start this off on the right foot and get this flesh of mine in the right place which is under submission to the Spirit.

I said I was going to concentrate on Prayer this week but God wanted me to touch on confessing faults and cleaning up my act. This is all a part of prayer since it's listening to God's leading and confessing to him. It's also the right way for me to start this journey. With purity and a new start with God.

We have probably heard or read different ideas on prayer and how to pray. Look at Jesus' example of how to pray in the Our Father prayer.
When you  think of it Jesus started with the most important thing first. Recognizing our relationship with our God. We need to realize He is our father. We can approach him because we are apart of the family.
Second Jesus shows that we need to also recognize who God is. Hallowed be thy name. He is holy. He deserves our praise and glory. The bible says he inhabits the praises of his people. He draws near when we honor and praise him.
Then the prayer goes on to recognize God's sovereignty and puts us in the right place of submitting to his will rather than our own. Our hearts need to be in the right place with God.
Only then does the prayer start talking about God helping us with our needs. Give us this day our daily bread. How often do we worry and get ahead of ourselves and God trying to get to the things of tomorrow instead of asking for what we need for today. Getting through today can be enough. It has it's own trials and blessings.
That is a tough one for me I must confess. I worry too much. If I concentrated on just today my life would be so much less stressful and I would live each day with more purpose in trying to follow God step by step. That is the challege I need to concentrate on. Invite God into my day and in each moment. Listen attentively and follow his leading in each moment of decision.

Ecc. 5:1 Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear...
Ecc 5:2 Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter [any] thing before God: for God [is] in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few.

These are good words to live by with prayer. Be more ready to hear...Listen instead of bombarding God with a barage of "I wants" "I needs". What does he want for us today? What does he plan for us today?

Let's keep our spiritual ears open. Take time to be in silence with God. Shut yourself away with Him.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Day 2-Walking after the Spirit- Repectance and Diligence

Yesterday was I was blessed with and early start. I learned about Ezra and the realization of how much the world can creap into and influence our lives.
I had determined to wake a half hour earlier this morning and God was faithful to wake me at 5:30 am. I woke to darkness and hearing just the crickets while I prayed. Then as I grabbed my bible the sky started to get lighter, I hear one bird chirping waking others, and soon their songs filled the air. Life beigins in the Word.

Ezra, confronted with the truth of the sins of his people, wept and prayed. He confronted his people with the truth, and then they began a purging process. They repented which means not only to say sorry but to turn around and go in the right direction from now on.

Think on what in your life reflects the world, but not God. Look in the mirror and be truthfull with yourself. You're not fooling God. He sees it all. Are these things more important? The Lover of your soul says come and sup with me, but you hold back. You cling to these things rather than him. What will those things do for you in the midst of storms? When trials come how will they save you and pull you through?

Please, understand when I say "you" I am speakign to myself as well. This is a shared journey. I have failed to put God first in areas of my life. I have at times compromized and regretted it. I am under great conviction to purge out the things that do not relflect God. If I am to be a light in the world like God asks, then I need to make sure the windows are clean and clear for others to see Christ through me.

Hebrews 11:6 ...for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and [that] he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.

1. steady and careful application
2. proper attention or care
3. (Law) Law the degree of care required in a given situation
God will reward our efforts if we diligently seek him.  He is faithful even if we haven't been. We can turn back to him and he will be right there to receive us.
Once we trun around we have to remain diligent to keep a steady pace, to be careful and apply what we learn, giving proper attention to God and the things of God.
I went to bed last night but stoped before I did to pray and praise Him.
He is the Alpha and Omega. First and Last. Shouldn't the first part of the day start in communion of prayer and praising him and the last end on the same note? He deserves it.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Day One-Walking after the Spirit

Started the day off right.

God took me seriously last night when I prayed for his help with all of this. He woke me up at 6 am. I got my prayer and bible time in.
I am reading through the old testament and am in Ezra right now. Ezra was praying for God's forgiveness for his people because they had married to other nations and brought in other religions into their lives as a result.
God is a jealous God. What idols and worldly things have entered into our homes and lives? He wants to be first in our lives. He desires our total devotion and love. He woos us and tries to get our attention but sometimes our work and even family become more important and we get caught up in being too busy for time with him.

Set aside more time to commune with the Lover of your soul

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Walking After the Spirit-30 day challenge

I am going on a journey with God. This is a redirecting, reprioritzing, rededicating challenge. A Romans 8, Walking after the Spirit challenge.

The main components to focus on in this journey are...
First and foremost improving communication with my Lord and savior-Prayer and bible
Second, dying to self-Fasting
Third- working out my salvation-challenging myself to strive for more..
fourth- body, mind,and spirit. Working on attitude-submitting my thinking to Christ. Taking care of my temple-exercise and eating right. keeping in mind that all these things contribute and are connected to feeling well and staying spiritually sound.

Communication is a two way street. Communion with God means I am listening for his leading, basking in his presence, and putting my trust in his will; not just telling him my list of wants.

Dying to self- Fasting- not just a food thing.
this will be about putting God first in everyting.

Working out my salvation- daily challenging myself with things I wouldn't normally do, and daring to be Christ like.

I will be starting with the communication, improving my prayer life this week.

Hope you will join me and let me know how your journey is going!