What is God Looking For?

January 31, 2017

What is God Looking For?

Malachai 3:1-12

“See, I will send my messenger, who will prepare the way before me. Then suddenly the Lord you are seeking will come to his temple; the messenger of the covenant, whom you desire, will come,” says the Lord Almighty.

2But who can endure the day of his coming? Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a refiner’s fire or a launderer’s soap. 3He will sit as a refiner and purifier of silver; he will purify the Levites and refine them like gold and silver. Then the Lord will have men who will bring offerings in righteousness, 4and the offerings of Judah and Jerusalem will be acceptable to the Lord, as in days gone by, as in former years.

5“So I will come near to you for judgment. I will be quick to testify against sorcerers, adulterers and perjurers, against those who defraud laborers of their wages, who oppress the widows and the fatherless, and deprive aliens of justice, but do not fear me,” says the Lord Almighty.

6“I the Lord do not change. So you, O descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed. 7Ever since the time of your forefathers you have turned away from my decrees and have not kept them. Return to me, and I will return to you,” says the Lord Almighty.

“But you ask, ‘How are we to return?’

8“Will a man rob God? Yet you rob me.

“But you ask, ‘How do we rob you?’

“In tithes and offerings. 9You are under a curse—the whole nation of you—because you are robbing me. 10Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it. 11I will prevent pests from devouring your crops, and the vines in your fields will not cast their fruit,” says the Lord Almighty. 12“Then all the nations will call you blessed, for yours will be a delightful land,” says the Lord Almighty.

“Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? (1 Corinthians 3:16)”  God is calling us in this hour to give attention to His temple that has been in ruin for so long.  Oh we have our beautiful buildings and wonderful church services, but the true state of the church is seen in the state of the God’s people.  What we have seen in our private homes is often what we have seen in the church.  We all have our own little houses and we are content to pretty much keep to ourselves and just take care of our own.  If I’m good, then you’re good. 

God is asking, “How is that working out for you?  Are you abundantly blessed or are you just living paycheck to paycheck with nothing left over?”  This was the state of affairs when the remnant of Jews had come back from Babylon.  The temple was in ruins, but as long as they had their own habitations they were content to leave it that way.  Haggai chapter 1 addresses them, and I believe us in this hour.  ” This is what the Lord Almighty says: “These people say, ‘The time has not yet come for the Lord’s house to be built.’”

3Then the word of the Lord came through the prophet Haggai: 4“Is it a time for you yourselves to be living in your paneled houses, while this house remains a ruin?”

5Now this is what the Lord Almighty says: “Give careful thought to your ways. 6You have planted much, but have harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it.”

7This is what the Lord Almighty says: “Give careful thought to your ways. 8Go up into the mountains and bring down timber and build the house, so that I may take pleasure in it and be honored,” says the Lord. 9“You expected much, but see, it turned out to be little. What you brought home, I blew away. Why?” declares the Lord Almighty. “Because of my house, which remains a ruin, while each of you is busy with his own house. 10Therefore, because of you the heavens have withheld their dew and the earth its crops. 11I called for a drought on the fields and the mountains, on the grain, the new wine, the oil and whatever the ground produces, on men and cattle, and on the labor of your hands.”

12Then Zerubbabel son of Shealtiel, Joshua son of Jehozadak, the high priest, and the whole remnant of the people obeyed the voice of the Lord their God and the message of the prophet Haggai, because the Lord their God had sent him. And the people feared the Lord.”

We are that present priesthood of God that God wants to purify, so that we can bring the whole tithes and offerings into the house.  We have often had the perception that as long as I have given my ten percent I fulfilled my requirement and brought the whole tithe.  Most of us haven’t really been faithful even in that, but the whole tithe is not just the tithe, but the offering as well.  

If we are the temple and it lies in ruin, then it must be evident that there are a lot of God’s people who are not being fully ministered too, spiritually or physically.  We in this country have grown up with the ideology that its us four and no more.  We take care of our own and don’t worry about everybody else.  That is  not God’s heart.  His heart is that we take care of one another.  That we get involved in one another’s lives and help each other in the ways that we can.  Some can help financially and some give of the talents and abilities that they have to offer so the body is no longer in lack.  

As God is teaching us to operate out of a kingdom mentality and not a capitalist one we have to see ourselves, all of us, as our brother’s keeper.  The body has to become unified not just in the church building, but in every day life. When we fail to see and address one another’s’ needs we are in effect robbing God, because Christ is in each of us.  The church, the temple of God, has to learn to function as an organism and not an organization.  Our function is to do as Ephesians 4:16 tells us, “From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.”  If we want to begin to really see the blessing of God in our lives we have to bring the “whole tithe” into the house so that every need is met as we operate, not out of obligation or guilt, but out of the love of God.  When I bless and meet my brother’s need I am doing it as unto Christ.  If Christ came to us hungry, homeless, jobless, would we not take Him in and provide what we could for Him?  In the same respect, if we took Christ in do you think He would only take from us and not give back.  We know that we can not out bless God.  

Consider and allow the Holy Spirit to show you how you can bless someone today.  It is when we start building the temple of God up in love that God’s blessings will be released upon our lives and we will experience our breakthrough.  

Blessings,

#kent

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I AM

January 30, 2017

I AM

John 18:1-8

When he had finished praying, Jesus left with his disciples and crossed the Kidron Valley. On the other side there was an olive grove, and he and his disciples went into it. 

2Now Judas, who betrayed him, knew the place, because Jesus had often met there with his disciples. 3So Judas came to the grove, guiding a detachment of soldiers and some officials from the chief priests and Pharisees. They were carrying torches, lanterns and weapons. 

4Jesus, knowing all that was going to happen to him, went out and asked them, “Who is it you want?” 

5″Jesus of Nazareth,” they replied. 

“I am he,” Jesus said. (And Judas the traitor was standing there with them.) 6When Jesus said, “I am he,” they drew back and fell to the ground. 

7Again he asked them, “Who is it you want?” 

And they said, “Jesus of Nazareth.” 

8″I told you that I am he,” Jesus answered. “If you are looking for me, then let these men go.” 9This happened so that the words he had spoken would be fulfilled: “I have not lost one of those you gave me.”

When Moses met with God at the burning bush in Exodus 3:13-14, “And Moses said unto God, Behold, [when] I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What [is] his name? what shall I say unto them? And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.”  How great is our God that is everything to every one of us.  As we go through the Word of God, we just see time after time how God was the provision, the providence and Divine Provider.  These are some of the statements that God made to Abram, “After these things the word of the LORD came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I [am] thy shield, [and] thy exceeding great reward.”  “And he said unto him, I [am] the LORD that brought thee out of Ur of the Chaldees, to give thee this land to inherit it.”  “And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I [am] the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect.” 

God said to Moses in Exodus 6:2, “And God spake unto Moses, and said unto him, I [am] the LORD:”  “I Am that I Am” speaks of everything that God is and that is contained in Him.  Which of us can fathom the depths of the great “I AM”?  His character is unfolded and revealed as we read through the Word of God.  We see how He delivers His people from their enemies, how He provides for their needs in wilderness where so many people, abide so long in a place that could not begin to support them in the natural.  We see God as  “I Am” in the righteous judgements He carries out. We also see Him in His mercy and lovingkindness.  When we come to the New Testament and Christ is revealed we see God revealed as, “I AM LOVE” in Christ.  “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever would believe upon Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)” This Jesus Christ of Nazareth, was the “I AM” incarnate, in human flesh and form.  Mark 8 :27 –28 says, “And Jesus went out, and his disciples, into the towns of Caesarea Philippi: and by the way he asked his disciples, saying unto them, Whom do men say that I am?  And he saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Peter answereth and saith unto him, Thou art the Christ.”  

Finally at the end of Jesus’ days when he is taken into custody and He asked the soldiers who they sought when they come after Him.  They said, “Jesus of Nazareth” and He said, “I AM” He.  So powerful was that “I AM” when He spoke of who He was that soldiers were knocked back and fell to the ground.  If there was that much power in Jesus just saying who He was, is there any doubt that the power that resided in Christ could have easily defeated any attempts to arrest or abduct him.  

Today Christ stands in God on the resurrected side of Calvary.  He is still declaring to mankind and to His people, “I AM, THAT I AM”.  

Whatever you need or whatever your circumstance God is “I AM” for you.  He is everything that you need to take you through whatever you have to face or whatever is pressing upon you.  He is always the “I AM” for you.

Blessings,

#kent

Acts 4:36-37

And Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas, (which is, being interpreted, The son of consolation,) a Levite, [and] of the country of Cyprus Having land, sold [it], and brought the money, and laid [it] at the apostles’ feet.

Barnabas, Son of Encouragement and Consolation

Barnabas is a rich example of a tremendous man of faith and godliness.  Barnabas is one of those ministries that was not at the forefront and limelight, but he was the backbone of those who were.  God used Barnabas tremendously in helping Paul to gain acceptance as an apostle and come into the ministry and office that God had for him.   Barnabas served as a co-missionary with Paul in the outreach to many of the gentiles.  We see him as a very dignified man of wisdom, generosity and encouragement.  Barnabas was the type of man and ministry that would see the gift of God in others and bring it out of them.  Even when Paul and Barnabas took John Mark with them and he failed the first time; Barnabas didn’t give up on him.  He and Paul had strong words and disagreement later on when Barnabas wanted to take him again.  It was to the point that they went their separate ways, but Barnabas saw the ministry gift that was inside of John Mark and his ministry was to develop it and bring it out.  John Mark goes on to write the gospel of Mark and even Paul later admits that John Mark is of use to him.  

Many of us are not ministers that are seen or acknowledged by position, office or gifts of oration.  Many of us may not be missionaries, pastor, evangelist, teacher, prophets or apostles, but we may be the means by which others may come into the fullness of their ministry and gifting.  Each one of us in the body of Christ is essential for the success and development of others in the body of Christ.  It may come through encouraging words, helps, financial support or mentoring.  There are many ways that we can make a difference even though what we do is not seen or even acknowledged.  

I love Barnabas because he brought out the best in others without seeking attention or recognition for himself.  His office and calling was really much higher than many give him credit for.  Your office and calling may be much higher than you actually realize.  When we allow God to work through us in whatever means He chooses too, we become the instruments and distribution of His blessing.  If we always deny that we are anything and are never willing to give ourselves to whatever it is that God would have us to do, we not only rob ourselves, we rob the body of Christ.  We deny it the talent and gift that God has given us to give.  ‘The greatest in the kingdom of God are the servants of all.’  They are simple people who just offered themselves to God’s service and purpose.  Be careful not to neglect the calling and election that you possess.  God has fashioned you for a purpose and He will reveal it as you seek Him and serve the body of Christ.  People of the lowest stations in life can often be the greatest in the eyes of God.  Don’t let who or what you are prevent you from being and doing what God has created you for.  It is not about us or our strength or ability.  We are simply the emptied glass that God can fill with the water of His life and be given for others to drink.  Fulfill your calling and come into the fullness of what He has for you.  In the process help others to do the same.

Blessings,

#kent

The Words of Your Mouth

January 25, 2017

The Words of Your Mouth

Psalms 19:14

Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer. 

The Word says in Luke 6:45, “The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.”  Stop and meditate with me for a moment about the words that come out of our mouth.  Often we are totally unaware of the spirit of the words we speak.  What is it that governs the words that we speak?  Do we process them or do we just speak out whatever words that our emotions feel at the time.  I feel a conviction that the words that we speak have a critical spiritual implication and need to be brought under the filtration of the Holy Spirit.  Some of you have learned the gift of edifying and building up with your words.  You desire and try to speak life and encouragement into each person even if they don’t measure up in many ways.  Still you choose to focus on the good in them.  There are times when you have to speak words of correction, but you do it in a spirit of humility and love.   Even your words of correction and discipline bring life and hope. 

 There are others of us that have totally lost control of our tongues.  Often it is the ones we say that we love the most upon which we unleash the fury of our cutting and biting words.  In those words there is no fragrance of life, but only bitterness, anger, frustration and condemnation.  Perhaps if you are that person that struggles with speaking these kinds of words there is a heart issue at the root of it that needs to be addressed.  You may feel justified or you may think “I don’t like the way I am, but I can’t help it.”  The Lord says it is coming from what you have stored up in your heart.  The beginning of changing a wrong vocabulary, rather it is cursing, condemning, critical, cantankerous or cutting, is dealing with the issues in your heart.  We can store up a lot of garbage in our hearts and the stink of it comes out through our words.  A lot of us need to take out the garbage.  We need to come and empty out our hearts before the Lord.  We need to not only seek and ask for His forgiveness, but be willing to forgive and release all of those offenses that we have held onto for so long.  Maybe you don’t even know why you can’t stand your spouse or your children and why they make you angry just being in their presence.  It is because there are unresolved hurts and offenses you are still carrying.  Maybe you feel that if you can just keep telling and drilling into them all the things that you don’t like they will change.  Maybe if you are able to hurt them bad enough with your words they will wake up and start to be different.  What we are missing is the fact that you may be having a hard time changing the things in you that are ugly and impure. Why do you think that other person can change more easily than you can?  

The Holy Spirit’s job is to change and transform us.  He can only do that as each of us are willing to yield and submit our hearts to Him.  Too many of us have tried to get into the Holy Spirit’s business and think we can effect change in people better than He can.  Sometimes the Lord does use people to help us to change, but it is His doing and not ours.  Like someone said, “ every time you point the finger at someone else, you have three pointing back at you.”  Change has to begin in our own hearts and with our attitudes.  We might be amazed at the changes that will take place in others when our heart and attitudes change.  

Our words are often a symptom of our heart condition.  You can often tell about the condition of someone’s heart by the words that they speak, especially concerning others.  What kind of condition is our heart in today?  What are we speaking into others, especially the ones we say that we love?  What are we saying about others when they are not around?  Are we building them up or tearing them down.  Oftentimes people end up demeaning, criticizing others and tearing them down because they have such low esteem and insecurity in themselves.  It is the person who is secure and who knows who they are in Christ that will promote and lift others above themselves.  They understand that it is not in the limelight of glory that they are promoted, but in the shadows of service and ministry to others.  

If you are struggling with how you talk to others or about others, then get with God and let the Holy Spirit show you your heart.  Be willing to be honest and transparent.  Don’t try to justify yourself, but be willing to hear and receive the truth.  The Lord wants to heal you emotionally and physically.  He wants the words that flow out of us to be pure and life giving, building up and not tearing down.  Don’t allow the enemy to any longer use your hurt as His weapon.   Allow the love of God to minister to your heart and get things right again.  Let go of those past offenses and give them to the Lord when they come.  Remember always how much Christ has forgiven us and let that same mind be in us.  Let your words begin to reflect the life and light that you carry with you in Christ, especially to your family and loved ones. 

Blessings,#kent

The Touch of God

January 24, 2017

The Touch of God

 Job 5:17-19

Behold, happy [is] the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty: For he maketh sore, and bindeth up: he woundeth, and his hands make whole. He shall deliver thee in six troubles: yea, in seven there shall no evil touch thee. 

What is contained in a touch?  A touch can communicate many things.  It can communicate tenderness or affliction, mercy or wrath, healing or wounding, virtue or hurt, both love and displeasure.  In the Law of Moses there were many commandments of touch not and taste not, but in Christ, righteousness is by faith.  Those that Jesus touched and those who sought to touch Him found the communication of His virtue, healing, power and life passed to them.  What is contained in a touch is what is in the heart of the one who touches.  

When God touches the lives of His beloved we know that His heart is love.  It is God’s love that desires to bring our hearts and will into conformity with His nature and purpose within us.  We have learned as parents and as children that love can be both tender and it can be tough.  God loves us just the way we are, but He loves us too much to leave us that way.  The touch of God may not always appear to us to be of love, because sometimes it is severe and our understanding is limited.  While God may afflict us and correct us in one area, in another we may see His hand of blessing and deliverance.  I don’t begin to pretend I know the mind and counsel of God, but what I do know is that God is love, therefore all that He does is motivated out of the attribute of that character.  In Job 5 Eliphaz is giving His counsel to Job and He makes these remarks about His observation of the nature of God in verses 8- 27.  ““But if it were I, I would appeal to God; I would lay my cause before him. 9 He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed, miracles that cannot be counted. 10 He bestows rain on the earth; he sends water upon the countryside. 11 The lowly he sets on high, and those who mourn are lifted to safety. 12 He thwarts the plans of the crafty, so that their hands achieve no success. 13 He catches the wise in their craftiness, and the schemes of the wily are swept away. 14 Darkness comes upon them in the daytime; at noon they grope as in the night. 15 He saves the needy from the sword in their mouth; he saves them from the clutches of the powerful. 16 So the poor have hope, and injustice shuts its mouth.17″Blessed is the man whom God corrects; so do not despise the discipline of the Almighty. 18 For he wounds, but he also binds up; he injures, but his hands also heal. 19 From six calamities he will rescue you; in seven no harm will befall you. 20 In famine he will ransom you from death, and in battle from the stroke of the sword. 21 You will be protected from the lash of the tongue, and need not fear when destruction comes. 22 You will laugh at destruction and famine, and need not fear the beasts of the earth. 23 For you will have a covenant with the stones of the field, and the wild animals will be at peace with you. 24 You will know that your tent is secure; you will take stock of your property and find nothing missing. 25 You will know that your children will be many, and your descendants like the grass of the earth. 26 You will come to the grave in full vigor, like sheaves gathered in season. 27 “We have examined this, and it is true. So hear it and apply it to yourself.””  The Lord is our savior, healer, defender and deliver, but He is also our disciplinarian and the corrector of our ways.  We often attribute our trials and afflictions to our sins, but God isn’t just dealing with sin, that was dealt with in the blood of Jesus.  God is preparing us for a much greater calling, as He was Job.  Job wasn’t dealt with so severely because of His sin, it was God working a greater transformation and calling in Job’s life through the fire of testing and trials.  It was Job’s integrity and faithfulness through the trials that he came forth into a place of priesthood ministry and double-portion blessing.  God doesn’t touch you with affliction to bring you down, but rather to bring you up.  Keep your eyes upon His promises and trust His heart.

Maybe you are in that hard place today.  Maybe you don’t understand why and God seems slow to move on your behalf.  Find that place of faith, rest and trust in Him.  Just humble yourself and commit all of you ways to Him.  You can trust that rather in life or death, blessings or affliction, God’s heart for you is love and what He is working is to bring you up and not to bring you down.  Allow God to touch your life to your ultimate benefit that your end may be blessed and fruitful to His glory.

Blessings,

#kent

The Hard Places

January 23, 2017

The Hard Places

Genesis 18:14

Is any thing too hard for the LORD?…

Are you in a hard place today?  Does an answer and a solution seem almost impossible?  Then we must pose the same question that the Lord posed to Sarah, Abraham’s wife, who laughed when the Lord told Abraham that she would have a son in her old age.  Sarah, being around ninety years old and her husband being older had a hard time believing even the Lord when He spoke this word to Abraham.  “Is anything too hard for the Lord?”  

There are times in our lives when we are in those hard places where the only place we have to look is up.  Unfortunately, so many of us leave God as our last resource rather than our first.  This is often why our situations go from bad to worse.   The Lord wants our hearts to be submitted wholly to His will and purpose.  It is often the hard places in our lives that bring us back to a place of humility and desperation for Him.   There is no where else to turn, so we turn to Him.  Sarah laughed because she didn’t see how even God could give her a child in her state of life and yet He did just as He said He would do.  We have a bad habit of pretty much shutting God out of our lives when things are going well, but here we come running when things go south.  While the Lord is so often gracious to help us in these times of need, it isn’t always, as we would expect it to be.  The Lord is interested in something more eternal than our immediate crisis.  Sometimes we don’t get the answers we think we want, because there are times God allows things to be torn down, so that He can do a new thing that could never happen if we continued on as we have been.  “Nothing is too hard for God,”but then “His ways are not our ways,” so the results and answers to our cries in these hard places may be different than we had anticipated.  We can never put God in a box and say He will do things a certain way, even if He did do them that way last time.  

The hard places are the places we stand upon the Word of God and His promises.  It is also a place where we must say, “not my will, but thy will be done.”   The promises of God are for a purpose.  They are not there to meet our every whim and desire; they are given that we may be partakers of the divine nature.  “Hereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. (2 Peter 1:4).”  Sometimes our hard places are the result of the corruption that is in the world and in us.  God’s promises are to bring us out of that place and not to pacify and accept it.  If God doesn’t seem to be meeting our cries for His help in those hard places maybe we need to step back and see why we might be there and what we need to do correct areas of our life that may have brought us to that place.  

We are speaking in general terms, but that Holy Spirit wants to talk to some of us today.  He wants us to know that nothing is too hard for Him, but what we see as deliverance may only result in our further destruction.  How many times have we seen kids get themselves into dire straits, which were really the consequences of their actions?  If we as parents always bailed them out, then the consequences never worked there intended purpose which was to bring correction and discipline to turn that person away from making more bad choices.  That is why God doesn’t always rescue us.  There may be lessons we need to learn first, there may be areas we need to seek the Lord about and areas we need to repent and ask forgiveness.  

God is there for us in those hard places, but those hard places are there to do a greater work of grace in us.  1 Peter 4:12-19 puts our trials in perspective to what the will of the Lord is: “Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.  If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy [are ye]; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.  But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or [as] a thief, or [as] an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters. Yet if [any man suffer] as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf. For the time [is come] that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if [it] first [begin] at us, what shall the end [be] of them that obey not the gospel of God?  And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?  Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls [to him] in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.”  Through your hard places allow the Lord to have His perfect work in you.  Hold fast to Him no matter how he chooses to answer.  Job waited a long time to see His answer, but he never lost his confidence toward the Lord and we mustn’t either.  God is faithful in His time and His way not ours.  “Nothing is too hard for Him.”

Blessings,

#kent

On Eagle’s Wings

January 20, 2017

Isaiah 40:27-31

Why do you say, O Jacob, and complain, O Israel, “My way is hidden from the LORD; my cause is disregarded by my God”? 28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, 

the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. 29 He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. 30 Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; 31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. 

They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

On Eagle’s Wings

Are we to worry in troubled times?  Do we think that the Lord does not see our need and our cause is disregarded?  If we think that then we don’t know who our God is.  

Jesus says in Matthew 6:25–34, “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” 

28″And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Our lives can no longer be measured by what we possess, the position that we hold or our social standing. Who possesses us and how much we are His possession is the measure of our lives.  The Lord cares for His own.  Psalms 37:25 says, “I have been young, and [now] am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread.”  These can be great times of opportunity for the people of God, because it causes us to become focused on what is the most important thing, our relationship with the Father.  Suddenly the things of this world that seemed so important yesterday are gone today.  That which we placed our confidence and hope in yesterday has vaporized and is no more.  Does that mean all hope is lost and the Lord does not care?  No, it should mean that now we can turn our attention to Him who has cared so much, but before we were too busy for Him.  Suddenly the resources of this world have dried up and we must discover whom our true resource and provision is.  

People of God, Know Your God!   “Those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. 

They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”

When young eagles get to a certain age of maturity it is time for them to get out of the security of their nest.  Up until this time everything has been comfy and cozy.  Their food has been brought to them and they have become complacent that this is the way life will always be.  Then one day the parent eagle begins to ruffle the nest, disrupting the smooth soft lining, making it poky and uncomfortable.  Then one day they make those little eagles leave that comfortable nest and jump out into nothingness hundreds of feet above the ground.   Now to that young eagle what is probably going through their mind is, “My goodness they have raised me up to kill me.”  Eventually they take off and fall, flailing their wings as they are falling.  Before they hit the ground the parent eagle sweeps under them and bears them back up to the nest.  Now you know that has to be an adrenaline filled moment, but it has to happen time and again until these little eagles find their wings.  When finally they find their wings they find that, like their parents, they too can fly.  They have just come into a new dimension that they had never known before.  Before it was only the parents that could do this, now they too can soar up to the heights of heaven and see for miles and miles.  

This speaks of us in this hour.  God is beginning to toss us out of our comfortable nests.  It has to be so as to bring us into the fullness of who we are in Him.  We were not created to feed in the barnyard with the other chickens.  We were created to rise up on our eagle wings and soar in the heavens.  God is the wind beneath your wings and He will bear you up as your faith relies upon Him.   Don’t be fearful when you fall.  Falling is part of the process of learning to fly, but if you never find your wings eventually you will be allowed to crash.  

We have a destiny and it is not life on earth status quo.  We have been raised up to not only experience the fullness of salvation, but to be the instruments of His salvation to a creation subjected to vanity, yet in hope.  We are the instruments of His salvation in the earth.  

Do not become discouraged or dismayed when hard times come upon us.  This is a day of opportunity and advancement to the people of God that will press us in to truly know Him. God is not trying to defeat you, but promote you.  This is a day when you can truly experience Him as your resource and provision.  In order for us to fly we will have to adhere to dynamic kingdom principles that perhaps we have not held too so closely before.  It is a place of faith and obedience as we learn His voice and find His provision in our every need.  

Blessings,

#kent

You are an Angel

January 19, 2017

Revelations 14:6-7

Then I saw another angel flying in midair, and he had the eternal gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth—to every nation, tribe, language and people. 7He said in a loud voice, “Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgment has come. Worship him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water.” 

You are an Angel

The Greek word for angel is “aggello”.  It is the word for one who is a messenger or sent with a message.  We most often think of angels as being heavenly beings and while they are that, they can be spirits that have expression through earthly instruments.  I don’t know that very many of us in our lifetime have ever heard angels in the heavens trumpeting and sounding out their message to our literal hearing and understanding.  In the sense that they are spiritual messengers sent to convey the Word of God, we, as God’s instruments often partner with them to bring forth the message brought to us from the messengers or angels of God.  We who share the gospel and speak that which the Spirit impresses us to speak are in a sense human angels or messengers commissioned with the Word from God.  If we grasp this concept that we are the embodiment of these angels sent from God to convey His message then we see where they are flying.  This angel is in midair, in other words in a realm between heaven and earth.  This is where we abide in the spirit.  We are no longer a part of this earthly realm and yet we have not fully come into heaven.  We might say that we are in the high places of the earth even though our body might reside in it lowest places.  Out of this place we are the proclamation of God’s Word to mankind and the spirit of this angel’s message embodies us to have expression.  

This angel is proclaiming this message in our hearing today.  The eternal gospel is being proclaimed and must be proclaimed to every nation, tribe, language and people.  It is our commission to carry out this message in all of the ways that God enables us to do so; through our personal witness and testimony, through our financial support of saints who are doing so and through our prayers for this message and its messengers to be received by those who have been ignorant of the gospel.  The message is not just of the gospel, but also of the judgement that is pending upon the earth in this hour.  Our heart should be to spare every soul possible from that judgement.  This is a message and call to ‘worship Him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water.’  It is our worship that brings us into intimacy with the Father.  All of the earth will see and acknowledge God, but it is God’s desire that they know Him in the gospel and good tidings of His grace rather than His judgement.  In this mandate that we have to share and promote the gospel, know that there are ministering spirits of angels that work with us in the spirit realm to promote and accomplish this end.  We are not alone, but there are angels all around.  Together, with them, we are that angel in this scripture that is proclaiming this eternal gospel.  Keep in mind that today and each day, you are a messenger of the Most High; an angel as it were, sent with the eternal gospel of the kingdom and God’s salvation for all who will believe.  Just as the angels must be obedient and faithful to their assignment, so must we.  The good news is that we are not alone in our endeavor, but we are reinforced by the host of heaven and empowered by the Spirit of God Himself.

Blessings,

#kent

Doers and not Hearers Only

January 18, 2017

Doers and not Hearers Only

James 1:22

But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. 

You are welcome to listen in as I am really talking more to myself than anyone else, although this is a subject that might actually touch many of us more than we realize.  I just feel the conviction that I am in the Word and daily talking about it, mentally I ascent and agree with it, but how is it playing out in my daily life?  It works great when I can apply it to others that, in my opinion, are missing the mark, but either I don’t want too and I am often too deceived to see how I am missing the mark.  

  You know, I think that I get tunnel vision.  I get to going in a routine and have things set in my mind about how I think things are or at least that I want them to be and I don’t want to acknowledge or be flexible enough to move out of those parameters.    Its not any different from that religious mentality that says I work five or six days a week, do my programs, or routines, maybe I even go to a bible study or some other weekly religious gathering.  On Sunday morning, often with contention we get ready and go to church, sing the songs, hear the word, shake our heads in affirmation and then go out to dinner, maybe take a nap, watch 60 minutes and Monday we start all over again.  Meanwhile what has really changed in me, you or in our world.  How many voices are saying in quite subtle ways, “ I could sure use your help, I could sure use a friend, I sure wish you would communicate with me, I sure wish I had a hand with these chores, I sure wish I could fulfill  that little need or want, or I could sure use your ministry and attention in this area of my life.”  I am convicted because I know that I have become so dull of hearing I either miss or fail to respond to the majority of those voices and those needs that are present in my family, friends, and my neighbors.  Now remind me again, “Who is it I am suppose to love as myself?”  If I am missing all of that in the people, most of whom I love and care about, how much am I missing of what God is wanting and needing from me?  If I have so shut them off, no wonder I can’t hear God’s voice as I pray, “help me to be an instrument of your blessing, help me to do your will, help me to love others as you have loved me and help me to know your will.  Amen.”  The fact is I already know what a whole lot of His will is, but am I willing to change my agenda to facilitate it?  

Husbands, it really helps if you are partly psychic and you can read minds well and be well attuned to exactly what your wife is thinking and feeling.  I have to admit that I am not very gifted in this area.  Most of the time women never just come out and say what they want and when they do it is usually too late.  You have to be able to read between the lines.  You have to be able to pick up on the subtle little things that are asking for your attention and action.  The wife might say, “I sure wish I had this little gizmo, it would be so helpful to do this” She is asking for something and we are thinking, “yeah, I would like to have that new router.  I could really do some cool stuff with that.”   If you are like me, most of the time you don’t hear that as a call to action, you simply dismiss it as one of those “that would be nice things” and go on.  Now you may not have intentionally blew her off, but in her mind you did, You didn’t hear her heart and you didn’t hear her need or want.  If I don’t pick up on that and hear that in my wife, then how much and how many times am I not being sensitive to the Holy Spirit when He is trying to motivate me in the right direction.  We are like, “Sorry God, I am on a mission right now, I have an agenda; get back with me later when I have more time.”  

I am doing exactly what the scripture tells me not to do; I am hearing as it goes in one ear and out the other, but it never gets processed into action and deed.  Nevertheless, I’ve heard the word, it was good and I agree with it, but I never get around to applying it to me personally.  I deceive myself into thinking I am spiritual when in reality I am just on a mental trip, it is not changing the way I hear, through a sensitive spirit, the needs of others and how I can respond to help meet them at the point of their need.  I am failing to allow Christ to really express through me the love and concern He has for others and their needs.  Unless someone finally comes along and slaps me up along side the head with a 2×4; I just stay pretty much oblivious to the problem that seems so obvious to that other person.  Like I said, by the time the 2×4 comes around to make me fully aware of the problem, it’s probably too late to try and remedy it then.  

So, “God, help me and any one like me to have ears to hear, eyes to see and a heart to do.  Help us to have spiritual sensitivity to the needs of others around us.  Help us to be your expression to those needs and to be doers of the Word and not hearers only, deceiving ourselves.  Amen.“

Blessings,

#kent

As the Spirit Moves

January 17, 2017

John 3:5-8

Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. 6Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ 8The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.” 

As the Spirit Moves

We live in a world of natural and spiritual.  The natural things we perceive and understand through our senses.  They are based on taste, touch, seeing, hearing and smell.  We have experienced a natural birth.  The water broke and we came forth from the womb.  Just as we have a natural birth we must have a spiritual birth because they are not one in the same.  Jesus is making a comparison.  Natural begets natural, but Spirit begets spiritual.  Our natural birth brings us into this world, but our spiritual birth brings us into the heavenlies and the dimension of the kingdom of God.  We have been born from beneath and now we must be born from above if we are to enter the kingdom of God.

 Jesus compares it to the wind.  It is often hard for us as natural beings to quantify, analyze and rationalize the spirit realm and that part of us.  Jesus says it is much like the wind.  It doesn’t move under our control, but it blows where it will and wherever it pleases.  We can’t see air or wind, but the wind shows itself as it is manifested through natural things.  The wind will pick up dirt and leaves and give a visible sense of its presence as these are moved, not through there own initiative, but through the power and the force of the wind.  It is much as the Sprit moves in and through us.  Sometimes He is very still and we don’t feel his presence at all and yet we know He is there because He is the spiritual air we breathe. 

I think of how the Lord came to Elijah when he had fled to Horeb, the mountain of God.  He was discouraged, fearful and ready to give up.  There, in 1 Kings 19:11-13, the Lord showed Elijah how to discern between the natural and the spiritual.  “The LORD said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the LORD, for the LORD is about to pass by.” 

Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake. 12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. 13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. 

Then a voice said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”  

You see Elijah, like most of us, had allowed his eyes to view things in the natural and not in the Spirit.  God was not in all of those natural calamities and forces of nature, He was in the still small voice that spoke to the inner man.  Be careful about judging things from the outward circumstances.  It is God who rules and is upon the throne.  Here, God showed the wind of His presence was in the still small voice that spoke to him in his spirit.  We may see God move as a gentle breeze, blowing across His people with His presence and anointing.  Sometimes He is a forceful wind to be reckoned with.  However the Lord is blowing upon our lives we want to bend in His direction and be sensitive to His movement.  We are the manifestation of His presence.  We are the natural elements that are moved by Him as He blows upon our lives.  Just as you can never tell about the wind, where it will blow or where it will go, so we never know when we will be moved by the Spirit of God in this direction or that situation.  We do want to hear His still small voice within us assuring us that His work is not finished, but that this is the way of the Lord now be faithful to walk in it. 

The Lord may be asking us what we are doing before Him in our fears, doubts and unbelief.  We must remember whom we have been birthed into, who we are in Christ Jesus and that we are called according to His purpose and design.  Now allow His still small voice and His breeze, not the natural elements of circumstance to move you wheresoever He will.  

Blessings,

#kent

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