Wisdom

The Hunt for God’s Blessings

Blessed

@creationswap/chrismanfre

By: Pastor Whited

I received an e-mail the other day and made me think of how do I handle life’s difficult times?
So, right now we are in hunting season and everyone is excited to hopefully hunt the BIG BUCK or Turkey but I started to think of how much prep time we put into preparing for the hunt: Get the right equipment,clothes, scouting, tree stands, doe urine , and hotel rooms for those who really are wimps! But we put a lot of time and energy into preparing for the hunt.

But today I am going to talk about a different type of hunting. The hunt for God’s blessing!

The bible give us all kinds of examples but I love Paul’s stories: 2 Corinthians 11:16-31

New International Version (NIV)
Paul Boasts About His Sufferings
16 I repeat: Let no one take me for a fool. But if you do, then tolerate me just as you would a fool, so that I may do a little boasting. 17 In this self-confident boasting I am not talking as the Lord would, but as a fool. 18 Since many are boasting in the way the world does, I too will boast. 19 You gladly put up with fools since you are so wise! 20 In fact, you even put up with anyone who enslaves you or exploits you or takes advantage of you or puts on airs or slaps you in the face. 21 To my shame I admit that we were too weak for that!
Whatever anyone else dares to boast about—I am speaking as a fool—I also dare to boast about. 22 Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they Abraham’s descendants? So am I. 23 Are they servants of Christ? (I am out of my mind to talk like this.) I am more. I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. 24 Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. 27 I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked. 28 Besides everything else, I face daily the pressure of my concern for all the churches. 29 Who is weak, and I do not feel weak? Who is led into sin, and I do not inwardly burn?
30 If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness. 31 The God and Father of the Lord Jesus, who is to be praised forever, knows that I am not lying
We see all these things that Paul went through and yet we see him say: “For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain…having the desire to depart and be with Christ, for that is very much better” (Philip. 1:21-23). In these words we see the entire substance of the apostle’s life and what he looked to beyond this life. Everything that Paul did revolved around his Lord whom he served. He knew that his Lord promises salvation that cannot be hindered by death, but is only brought closer by it. Thus, death was viewed as a valuable thing.
Are you hunting for all the blessing in your life or are you becoming bitter instead of better? The battles of this life are to be expected but it is how we deal with them that makes the difference. Are you digging deep to find the blessing in life’s difficult times?  Let’s look at one more example:

Matthew 14:22-33

New International Version (NIV)

Jesus Walks on the Water

22 Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd. 23 After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray. Later that night, he was there alone, 24 and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.
25 Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake. 26 When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.
27 But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”
28 “Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”
29 “Come,” he said.
Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”
31 Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”
32 And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down. 33 Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.”

Cross references:

  1. Matthew 14:22 : 14:22-33pp — Mk 6:45-51; Jn 6:16-21
  2. Matthew 14:22 : 14:34-36pp — Mk 6:53-56
  3. Matthew 14:23 : S Lk 3:21
  4. Matthew 14:26 : Lk 24:37
  5. Matthew 14:27 : Mt 9:2; Ac 23:11
  6. Matthew 14:27 : Da 10:12; Mt 17:7; 28:10; Lk 1:13, 30; 2:10; Ac 18:9; 23:11; Rev 1:17
  7. Matthew 14:31 : S Mt 6:30
  8. Matthew 14:33 : Ps 2:7; S Mt 4:3

We see Christ walk on water to the disciples in the storm when their  world was being rocked and wondering what to do, then they LOOKED for Jesus and he came to them in the storm and as soon as Peter got his mind off the storm and fixed on Jesus then he was no longer worrying about the storm he wanted to walk out to meet Christ and was given the ability to do so by the faith in Christ Jesus, but as soon as Peter’s faith got weak and he lost the focus on Jesus then the storm became the focus again and he began to sink, but Christ still did not give up on him, Jesus then climbed in the boat with them and when Jesus entered into their presents then the storm completely calmed.

Today I challenge you the next time you find yourself in a storm, remember that there is a blessing to be found we just have to be willing to hunt for it. Are willing to go hunting for your blessing today during this Thanksgiving time? Look around at truly view what you have to be thankful for in your life right now.

I was going through a rough time at work and I got consumed by the situation, it was the main focus and I was just freaking out, wondering what I was going to do. So I called one of my friends and asked his advice and as I talked to him he started ask me some questions: How is your family? How is your finances? Do you have money in your pocket? Is your mom and Dad still alive? Do you have your health? Could you get another job if you had too? Do you have a car? Do you have friends? Do you have a house? Do you have a church family? Do you have salvation?

At first I did not want to discuss any of that; I had a problem and that is what I called him about, not to ask me a bunch of questions.
But then he stated; “ you got a lot to be THANKFUL for don’t you?” A lot of time in the big scheme of things these storms are not as big as we think they are.

Have you allowed your storm to get so big that you can’t see Jesus on the other side telling you that he can walk on top of every storm that life hands you but you have to willing to seek me first.

I hope each of you have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day and allow yourself to be filled with Joy knowing Jesus is in control of every storm and give him the Thanks for the blessing he is going to give you during this difficult time .  Become a hunter of blessing !

Please feel free to pass this along to anyone who you believe needs to hear the message. God Bless!

You Have The Victory

Above All

@creationswap/johnemery

By Irma Green

You have been liberated; you have been emancipated; you have been set free!

Scripture says: “Thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”  The noose has been loosed, removed and you can walk in victory.  It’s time to claim your emancipation; you have been given a bill of rights.

You need to claim your victory.  You need to claim victory over your life, victory over your circumstances, over your situtions.  You can claim your victory because it is already yours.  It’s already yours beacuse of what happened on the cross.

Satan has no hold over you – you have dominion over him.  You are the victor – not the victim.  You have victory through Christ Jesus; that means you have victory over every area of your life.  It is victory over  all the power of the adversary.

Luke 10:19 I give you authority (power) to trample on serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.

How much power did God give you over the enemy? “ALL”!!  You have been given ALL power and authority to walk in victory.  There’s nothing to hold you back.
Psalm 124:7 – Our soul is escaped as a bird out of the snare of the fowlers; the snare is broken and we are escaped.

Our souls are set free because of what happened on the cross. There is no longer a snare of Satan, or sin, or fear that can hold you.  You are free from the power of darkness.  you are free to live the abundant life Jesus came to give you.
______________
About the Author:
Rev. K. Irma Green, retired pastor; Motivational Speaker/Bible Teacher
www.birthinganewyou.org  irmagreen8@aol.com

Article Source: http://www.faithwriters.com <a href=”http://www.faithwriters.com”>CHRISTIAN WRITER</a>

Dear Lord, Give Me Wisdom (poem)

Wisdom: mastering the obvious

@creationswap/paulcarlson

By Cinda Carter

Dear Lord, Give me wisdom
In making my decisions
Help remind me to pray
To think about what I am going to say.

Sometimes without thinking I jump in with both feet
Only because I did not pray and think
I didn’t think of the consequences it would bring
I was eager to serve without Your leading.

You are truly merciful and You do forgive
Though the damage is done You will bring
What Satan meant for evil, and turn it around for good
These things will eventually be understood.

If I would just take the time to pray
And listen to what God has to say
I could avoid so many mistakes
As prayer prevents them taking place.

So, my prayer is, Dear Lord,
Help me to listen to You and be in accord.
One with the Holy Spirit knowing Your will, I pray,
Dear Lord, Give me wisdom, so You can have Your way.

“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally,
and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.”  James 1:5  KJV

Article Source: http://www.faithwriters.com <a href=”http://www.faithwriters.com”>CHRISTIAN WRITER</a>

Because of You

Prayer

@creationswap/jenniferpowell

Because of You By Steve Countryman

Because of you Lord I am made perfect.  Because of you Lord I am redeemed and saved.  Because of you Lord I am blessed beyond measure.  Because of you Lord my life has purpose.  Because of you Lord I am not the person I used to be.  Because of you Lord I am delivered, set free, healed and restored.  Because of you Lord I walk in your victory everyday.  Because of you Lord I don’t have to stare at my problems instead I get to stare at you, my answer.  Because of you Lord my past does not dictate my future, you do.  Because of you Lord I have a future.  Because of you Lord I am the righteousness of Jesus who dwells in me.  Because of you Lord my walk is an upright and righteous walk.  Because of you Lord my Christian life is exciting and NEVER boring.  Because of you Lord I will never be the same.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.  In my prayer time recently I was thanking God for Him being made strong in my weaknesses.  Then I saw a vision of being clothed in amour.  This amour was nothing special and looked common, not flashy like you see in the movies.  As I looked closer at it I saw “chinks” in it.  “Chink” means an opening in a suit of armor that allows a weapon to penetrate it.  Chinks are a sign of weakness in a suit of amour.  These chinks were caused by the weapons used against me by the enemy to hurt and destroy me.  Each chink represents one of my many weaknesses.  I used to wonder why God picked me with all of my weaknesses.  I know now it was because He gets to shine brightly through them in me!

To my amazement something spectacular started to happen.  A glowing light began to shine through my chinks.  The light became brighter and stronger.  There were so many chinks that the light that shined through it reminded me of a dance floor mirror ball.  What the enemy did not realize until it was too late was that the light shining through my chink filled amour was God being made strong through my weaknesses.  Because of you  Lord I am empowered with authority from on high!  For I can do all things through Jesus Christ who strengthens me.

Because of you Lord being made strong in my weaknesses my boast and my bragging is all in you!  Because of you Lord I am more than a conquer.  Because of you Lord I am the head and not the tail, I am above and not beneath.  Because of you Lord my strength is renewed like the eagle.  Because of you Lord I do not grow weary or weak.  Because of you Lord my walk of obedience and faith is made firm and secure.  Because of you Lord all my battles are won.  Because of you Lord I am not afraid for if you are for me then who can be against me?  Because of you Lord my successes and victories are found in you.  Because of you Lord there is less of me and more of you.  Because of you Lord I am saturated in your love.  Because of you Lord I am saturated in your prosperity.  Because of you Lord I am saturated in your Holy Spirit fire.  All I am and all that I will be is all because of you Lord!

My name is Steve and I was born and raised in a good Christian home in Phoenix Arizona.  In 2004 God spoke to me to let me know that He would start sharing things with me that I would share with others. Little did I know how powerful and meaningful those things would be! Thank you Lord!!

Article Source: http://www.faithwriters.com <a href=”http://www.faithwriters.com”>CHRISTIAN WRITER</a>

Changing the Conversation (Please read this!)

people of the presence

@creationswap/jeffbrown

By Norm Cannada

When I think of the First Century church, my mind immediately jumps to the story in Acts 2 where the church — about 120 men and women at the time — are gathered together in one place focused on the resurrection of Jesus and the call to tell others.  The Holy Spirit takes control of the meeting and God comes forth in a mighty way.  I imagine people from the city peering into the windows, trying to get a glimpse of what was happening.

No one is peering in the windows in the church today, and they haven’t for a long time.   Most people in my inner city community in Charleston, WV are not just unchurched —they don’t give the church any thought. They say they do not believe the church has anything relevant to say to them.
In many homes throughout America, the name “Jesus” is not heard in a typical week unless someone hits themselves with a hammer or stumps their toe.  We are raising a generation of children who have little or no knowledge of who Jesus is and how much He loves them.
It is my heart to see Christians work to “Change the Conversation” with the people we see in our communities.  There are many ways to share the love of Jesus in everyday life.  One of my favorite ministries is as simple as eating out in a restaurant.  I learned from conversations with waiters and waitresses that the one shift people do not like to work is the Sunday lunch shift.  They say the people are rude and do not tip well.  When I first heard that, it broke my heart.
I was especially sensitive to this because I had seen the effects of Christians who were rude to waiters and waitresses.  We had a team of volunteers come to West Virginia from North Carolina for a long weekend of ministry.  After a busy day, the team went out to a local restaurant.  The service was not very good and one woman on the mission team began complaining about the waitress to the management.  Her complaints eventually led to the waitress being fired.  Before the team left, the woman who had complained went to the waitress and continued to complain, saying the waitress did not do her job well.  She then pulled out one of my business cards and, instead of a tip, handed it to her and said, “you need to talk to this man.  You need to change.”
It turned out the waitress lived just blocks from my house and she came to see me the next day.  But, she didn’t want my help.  She was angry and hurt.  Nothing I said to her then, or in the years to come, could convince her that I, or anyone else, cared about her.  The damage was already done.
So, we began praying for waiters and waitresses to let them know God loves them, making sure that we act in a way that matched our words.  Anytime anyone went out to eat, they were to order their meal and then say to the waiter or waitress, “We are going to pray over our meal.  Is there anything we can pray for you about?  They were also to be friendly, tip well and not complain about anything.  I reminded people they were not there for the service.  They were there to serve the Lord.

This simple act has changed lives.  Yes, some said they didn’t have any prayer needs, but often the requests led to a good exchange about faith.  I have also seen wait staff sit down at the table, share needs and ask if we would pray right then in their presence.
On December 7, 2010, 10 churches participated in a “Change the Conversation” event.  People from the 10 churches were assigned to eat at one of six Mexican restaurants in the area.  They were asked to do three things — ask the waiter or waitress for prayer needs and pray for them by name, be friendly and tip well (at least 20 percent).  There was a tip given to the kitchen staff and another tip was given to the waiter or waitress.  Each group of people was given specially made Christmas Cards, written in Spanish, to give along with the tip.  The cards explained the reason for Christmas and offered the name and phone number of the man who led the Hispanic ministry.  By the end of the night, our Hispanic Ministry leader had received a call from a man who was overwhelmed by the love of the people who prayed for him.  They met the next day.

________________________

About the Author:
Norm Cannada has worked as a newspaper editor and writer as well as an inner cty pastor and church planter.   He lives in Charleston, WV.

Article Source: http://www.faithwriters.com <a href=”http://www.faithwriters.com”>CHRISTIAN WRITER</a>