1 Kings 7:13, 14 ; 2 Chronicles 2:14
"And now I have sent a skillful man, endowed with understanding, Huram my master craftsman, the son of a woman of the daughters of Dan, and his father was a man of Tyre, skilled to work in gold and silver, bronze and iron, stone and wood, purple and blue, fine linen and crimson, and to make an engraving and to accomplish any plan which may be given to him, with your skillful men and with the skillful men of my lord David your father."
Whenever we read about anyone in Scripture and see the mother mentioned by name or just as mother, there is definitely something vital and powerful for us to take a look at!
Hiram or Huram's mother ended up becoming a single parent due to widowhood. She raised a child that was talented and skillful. Despite her loss, she kept the household going. His father was also a skilled man. He learned from his father. Huram honed in on his skills and perfected them and as a result, he got the opportunity to work for Solomon in the building of the temple. Solomon requested him for the work of metal and other furnishings for his magnificent Temple.
No doubt, Huram's mother directed his talents and guided them in the direction of what was beautiful and lasting.
Mothers have the greatest influence and impact on the lives of their children. The fathers do too, but in a different way.
If a mother harbors resentment and hatred for people, her children will also hate those same individuals. I have personally seen this. It is one of the many evils I have witnessed under the sun.
Whatever state, spiritually and mentally and emotionally a mother is in, her offspring will be greatly affected in tremendous ways for the good or for the bad.
Children hardly ever do what you say, they do what you do!!!! Before a child learns to speak, they are observing their parents and watching their responses and actions carefully. They are quietly learning how to interact with others based on how their mother does.
Before a child is born, the emotional circumstances of the mother plays an important role in the spirit of the unborn child. It is very deep and profound how God has created the female body in light of baring children.
Mothers have to be emotionally stable, and at peace within themselves. They need to be mature and settled in order to produce stable, happy, and healthy children.
So....what sort of mother are you? What kind of influence are you having on your offspring or will have on them? What power source are you looking to, as a mother, to help guide you through motherhood? What type of child or children will you be unleashing upon society?
here is nothing more beautiful and commendable than a mom who pays close attention to her child's emotional makeup. A mom who pays attention will come to see the talent and ability her child possesses. She will then look for ways to hone in on those skills and help to develop her child for God's honor and glory. Mothers should always be looking to guide her children's talents in the direction of what will make a contribution to the kingdom of heaven.
This world if filled with talented, skilled persons, but to what end??
May we as mothers and grandmothers pay closer attention to our children and look to God to see how we can influence and guide them. Let us nurture and build lives for the Kingdom of God.
1 Cor. 10:32
"Do not cause anyone to stumble."
STUMBLE: To almost fall due to lost of balance or tripping.
We can become a stumbling block to others in ways we do not even realize. Sometimes it's something we were constantly heard saying, or seen doing. It could be something we failed to uphold yet we expected others to. At other times it was the way we treated people and the things we said to others about them.
A stumble could lead to a fall. One's spiritual progress could be hindered. We all know that no one's perfect, but that cannot be the excuse for the lack of personal responsibility when it comes to others.
I have seen what happens to a brother or sister in Christ who were stumbled. Some have been discouraged and turned off and won't set their feet back into any 'Church', while others have come to hate Christians and Christianity. I have stated in one of my posts, a couple of weeks ago, that I won't criticize such persons because I clearly understand where they are coming from.
Unfortunately, and sadly, our journey here on earth, will not keep us from stumbling blocks or offenses. Scripture admonishes us to avoid at all costs, being a stumbling block to others.
Stumbling others is a very serious thing, yet, one cannot, for the rest of their lives allow it to stagnate their spiritual growth or keep them from coming to know the Lord. But, it can be a real tough thing to get over, depending on the severity and degree of the thing that was done.
When King David sin egregiously, (adultery, murder, etc.), many were stumbled by him until the day he died. That's how intense it can be.
Leaders must be above reproach! They must examine themselves constantly and so must the rest of us. We don't get a pass just because we are not in some leadership role. The congregants must sit in judgement of themselves and make efforts to not mis-represent what they say they believe (hypocrisy) by engaging in ungodly behavior. We set the examples for the younger ones. The younger ones, coming along, will do as we do! It doesn't matter what we preach or what we say. Bad or ungodly behavior breeds much of the same within our churches.
If we should fail and cause someone an offense, or potentially cause them to stumble, we should go and address it before it does any damage. I have more respect for the Christian who admits they were wrong and apologizes (which allows us to be gained one to the other), than the one who acts as though nothing happen; because that individual would lose me FOREVER! There are some of us who think that we are above correction! They are the worst!!! PRIDE IS A KILLER!
It doesn't matter what your area of service or gifting is, if you go around stumbling people, you are ineffective!! You will have no influence and your words will fall to the ground. You will be despised.
Let's make every effort to care about others and watch our words and actions, examining each one carefully, before we let them out of the gate. Ask yourself, "If I say this or do that or be seen with this person, what signal could I be sending and could this stumble someone?"
2 Cor. 1:4
"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God."
I don't know about you, but when I think back on 37 years of my Christian walk with God, what stands out the most are the individuals who were 'Real'. When I say 'Real', they were imperfectly holy, if there is such a thing.
The things that have impacted me the most have been all the testimonies shared with me from believers who had fallen in love with the Lord. They faced tough challenges and many times they had no answers for the situations they found themselves in, yet, they simply remained faithful to God. It was as simple as that for them.
As they shared their many accounts of God's faithfulness to them, in spite of themselves, I was encouraged because through them, God was letting me know that despite my weaknesses and failures, He was going to hang in there with me and bless me regardless.
The Lord constantly reminds me of the testimonies of others and brings them to mind just when I need them the most.
Not everyone who has come across my path has impacted me in that way. But it has been the ones who were authentic and real in their faith!
I have never benefitted from the 'One liners' or the 'Praise The Lord' greetings. Never! The individuals who have just been their true selves as they shared their triumphs and their struggles and the powerful manifestations of the Lord in their lives, have given me strength for my journey and I will never forget what they have told me. I am still living off of their words today!
There is something so attractive and beautiful about being your authentic self. After all, humans are pretty much transparent after a while, so you might as well be you and do you. Nothing is worse than finding out that a person isn't who they made you to believe they were.
It is this same authenticity that leads others to Christ. People are looking for honesty and truth and the real deal. The world has already lied to them and now they are looking for what's true.
Your struggles, and my struggles, your triumphs, and my triumphs, were meant to be shared in order to help someone else gain a few steps closer to God. Let's not fail on purpose (by doing something we know is wrong) or fail because we've been careless or carnal, but let us use all we've been given and all we've experienced to help strengthen the body of Christ!
I don't know if you noticed, but the local church is shrinking dramatically and the power from the word has lost its punch; God hasn't changed, but the vessels have. We need to live Christ and share Christ while we still have the chance!
2 Samuel 13: 1-4
Dysfunctional Families Are Toxic!!!
The problems in David's household started when He sinned with Bathsheba and had her husband Uriah killed in battle. If he only knew what all of that would have lead to, he would have thought twice and reigned his lustful passion in.
David had eight wives! This was against God's law and way for His people Israel. There are always consequences for every act of disobedience! David's household was dysfunctional and toxic. He, personally, based on repentance, and his relationship with God, was called a man after God's own heart because he knew how to repent, but the consequences of his sins left his family in tremendous trouble.
David had a daughter named, Tamar. She was young and pretty and she was a virgin. One of David's sons was sick in lust for his half sister, Tamar, and with the help of his despicable cousin, Jonadab, a scheme was set in place on how to get Tamar to Amnon's house so he could sleep with her. The end result was that she, Tamar, begged her half brother, Amnon, to let her go and not force himself on her because it was wrong and she also told him that he would end up looking like a fool before their people Israel. She also stated that he would ruin her chances for marriage and then where would she go? He didn't care. He raped her and then he kicked her out. With all of that sexual lust and love he had, with the same intensity he hated her after he satisfied his flesh.
She was now ruined. Her brother, Absalom questioned her and she told him what happened. He took her into his house to live and told her not to say anything about it. David found out and all he did was get angry. He never did anything about it. Look at the failure in that family. Look at the level of dysfunction within their walls. Look at the position Tamar was in - in that no family member fought for her or protected her. She suffered for the rest of her life.
Well...we know how the story ended; after two years goes by, Absalom sets up a plot and kills his half brother Amnon for the rape of his sister, Tamar. After that, more things happen in that family that continued the toxic fall out.
We don't get to choose the families we were born into, unfortunately, we are helpless and subject to whatever our parents do and not do. If our parents are sinful and corrupt, we share in the consequences of their lifestyle. Even some so called, 'Christian' families are filled with repeating the dysfunctional cycle.
Let's face it, David was a terrible father. He failed to rebuke his adult children for their sins and he loved them to a fault. He did nothing to comfort his daughter, Tamar.
The innocent always suffer in dysfunctional, toxic families but God holds a soothing balm for the innocent ones. I speak from personal experience. I share my testimony in my book, 'Called To Suffer' (amazon).
I can testify to the healing process of God and His compassion and mercy on me despite the family I was born into. I am forever grateful to the Lord for showing me how to 'STOP THE CYCLE' by making sure it didn't visit the next generation (my children). Sometimes you have to separate yourself from your own family for your sanity and health's sake. It may not be an easy thing to do, but a necessary thing to do. God makes sure that any who are forced to make that choice, find family elsewhere.
If you can relate to this post, know that God loves and cares about you more than you know. Go to Him and ask Him to show you what to do. He will send others to help you and God, Himself, will give you a good future (Jeremiah 29:11).
MORNING MEDITATIONS AND FOOD FOR THOUGHT!
1 KINGS 16:31
"And it came to pass, as though it had been a trivial thing for him for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, that he took a wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal, king of the Sidonians; and he went and served Baal and worshiped him."
Ahab, the king of Israel, married Jezebel. What a big mistake. She was idolatrous.
In 1 kings 21, we read about a man named, Naboth. Naboth was a honorable man. King Ahab wanted Naboth's vineyard that was next to his palace. Naboth said that he couldn't give his inheritance away. King Ahab got upset and Jezebel asked what was wrong and he told her. What she does afterward is the clincher.
Jezebel tells her husband to get up and eat and get happy because she was going to see to it that he got that vineyard.
You can read the account for yourself, but she ended up devising an evil plan to have Naboth killed and his vineyard taken.
Jezebel is self-seeking, vengeful, narcissistic, covetous, full of pride, decisive, no true affection, insensitive, cold, cruel, wicked and evil.
She tells her husband to go get the vineyard that she has secured by having Naboth killed. Wow! Her husband goes and gets the vineyard. The affect she had on her husband was shameful.
God had a judgement waiting for Ahab and Jezebel which was prophesied by the prophet Elijah (vs. 17-29) and the judgement against Jezebel was fulfilled!
There are some 'Jezebels' that walk this planet today. I've encountered some. They have no respect for men in authority. They don't know how to love. They are narcissistic and only concerned with themselves. They are phony and pretentious. They only be-friend others for what they can get from those persons to further their goals or plans. They go after simple minded, weak and gullible persons whom they can influence and control. It is something to behold when you see them in action. If they are married, they disrespect their husbands and embarrass them publicly and shame them before others. They are pathological liars and volatile.
Today's Jezebel sits in a pew looking for her next victim. She has the ability to charm unsuspecting fellows as she works her wiles and gets them to believe that she is out for the good of the church. She, through manipulations can get people to write her checks to pay her bills. She preys on weak, unsuspecting men in the church. She is a user and an abuser of the Lord's people!
Can you identify 'Jezebel'? She is idolatrous and gets what she wants at everyone's expense, but God, Oh, but God, He gives her enough rope to hang herself.
Beware! Know who you are looking at! Everybody that warms a church pew isn't saved!!! Don't kid yourself! They may resemble a Christian, but there's always evidence by their fruit and what tree they are really dangling from.
Matt. 13:30 clearly tells us, "Let the wheat and the tares grow together until the harvest, and at the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, "First gather together the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my barn."
You and I have the Holy Spirit indwelling us and it's a spirit that reveals all that's true and real and authentic! It is for our protection that we submit to Him and follow Him, this way, the devil and all the persons he uses will be powerless against us.
Satan has planted these individuals in local churches. He only plants them in churches where he sees true growth and productivity for God (vs.26). Satan seeks to keep Christians at odds with one another and create divisive spirits among God's people. Be Aware! Don't get caught in this trap! Stay prayed up and vigilant in the event God puts you in a position to stand up to these 'Jezebel' spirits!
MORNING MEDITATION AND FOOD FOR THOUGHT!
Mark 4:35; 5:1
They made it over to the other side as Jesus originally said to them to. He emphatically said, “Let us pass over to the other side.”
Jesus gave the assurance by His command that the destination was going to be to the other side of the sea from where they were.
They happily went not anticipating anything other than taking a boat ride to the other side. In their minds it was a simple task, after all, they were accustom to taking boat rides.
They did make it to the other side, but from point A to point B, there was turbulence, danger, fear and stress.
Sometimes in our Christian journey from point A to point B, we will experience hinderances, troubles, fears, doubts and crisis that make us wonder where is the Lord.
The Lord is ever present, just quietly observing us and our responses to the atmospheric conditions (spiritually speaking) around us. He’s waiting patiently near by.
He knows when to say, “Peace Be Still”, to our storms. He’s the master of the sea, winds and waves.
The length of our trials are determined by Him for the testing of our faith and for the spiritual growth that is needed. It is also His desire that we see His face more clearly and distinctly in every situation.
The disciples saw him on the boat sleeping calmly and quietly while they were in despair of their lives and questioned if He even cared that they could die in the situation.
Jesus addressed their fears and their lack of faith and then brought an end to the turbulence.
Sometimes we feel stranded by the Lord God in the midst of severe trials and difficulties. The length of time that He chooses to leave us there brings great concern and fear because in our finite minds the prolonging of the situation could only lead to more devastation with a negative end.
Faith allows us to take on God’s perspective and hold firm in the midst of hard times. Faith will reminds us that we are not alone no matter how bad things get or how far things go. Faith will carry us through the storm and we will reach the other side, it just may not be via the way we had in mind.
MORNING MEDITATION AND FOOD FOR THOUGHT!
What deliverance was given to the man with the Legion of unclean spirits within him! He knew what he had been delivered from! He couldn't help but 'Go and Tell'!
Each believer bears a powerful seal within him and her that has been given by God. The Holy Spirit is a spirit of Power. It has been placed within us that we might experience the manifestation and power of God daily in our lives.
Over the course of my Christian life I have heard some awesome and powerful testimonies from men, women and young people. We have all heard some heart stopping testimonies of the evidence of God's work in people's lives.
It is great to hear of the testimonies of others, but what about the manifestation of the Holy Spirit's work in our own lives? Are we having powerful encounters and experiences with God week after week or day by day? If not, why not?
The Holy Spirit should not lay dormant within us all week and stirred within us on Sunday.
When we are daily hearing from God via His word and giving Him our trust followed by obedience We Will experience His presence in powerful ways. It comes in the little things, the things we count as insignificant and it shows up in big ways as well.
The same power that raised Christ from the dead resides within us! Think about that! That alone gives us reason to rejoice!
Let's be like the man with the Legion of unclean spirits and run and tell all who will listen what great things God has done and is doing in our lives. Don't keep silent!!! Tell It!!! Live it!! Sing It!! Shout it while there is still time!
MORNING MEDITATION AND FOOD FOR THOUGHT!
What has God place within your hands to do in service to Him? From the time you and I accepted the Lord as our personal savior, He gave us a Spiritual Gift; at least one. Some may have more than one granted to them according to ability. We get an idea of this from reading Matt. 25:14, 15.
In 1Cor. 12: 1-11 we are told in so many words, that spiritual gifts are given for spiritual purposes. Spiritual gifts are to benefit the entire body of Christ. In other words, all of the believers we are in contact with: inside our local church, outside our local church, all believers everywhere we come in contact with for any reason, should be benefitting from our spiritual gift/s.
We each have been given, by God Himself, a special ability that no one else has in that way. No one else can exercise that ability in the way that you or I can. Many may have the same gift, but a different 'spin' on it with a different effect when used under the power of the Holy Spirit.
These gifts have been given to each person for the purpose of meeting particular needs within the body of Christ. None of us possessed these gifts before we were saved.
We must operate these gifts 'In Love' (1Cor.13:1) or else the gift becomes useless or ineffective.
What is your gift? The Apostle Paul told Timothy to, "stir up the gift of God that is within you," (2 Tim.1:6). Activate your gift, use it, find ways to use it. The more you use it, the more it will become effective and useful and beneficial to others!
Another benefit of these spiritual gifts is that God can use them to benefit the individuals who possess them in ways you cannot imagine. Proverbs 18:16 tells us, "A man's gift makes room for him, and brings him before great men."
If we are diligent, not lazy, but take the pain staking time to develop what God has given to us, that very gift can open doors and give access that other wise wouldn't be granted to us. It also could gain you and I respect and favor among the esteemed. It could also get you out of a situation as well.
Let us not neglect the gift that is within us! Let's persevere and put every bit of energy into developing more and more, thereby becoming more effective in the service of the Lord for the Kingdom!
MORNING MEDITATION AND FOOD FOR THOUGHT!
"Wear The Shoes God Made To Fit You"!
We all know that 'Shoes' must fit us properly in order to walk comfortably. If a shoe is too tight, we will feel the pain and discomfort as it rubs our toes or heels causing blisters and sores.
If our shoes are too big, they will hinder our stride and slip off and if they are too small, each step we make will result in intense pain.
I liken 'Shoes' to the life that God has ordained for you and I to live out. The life, meaning, the family, the parents, the household or the conditions of such, were ordained by God. He did not order or create the negative circumstances that we may have been subjected to, but He 'Allowed' it for His Honor and glory. Anything God feels He can receive fruit from, He allows!
'Shoes' can also be likened to: disappointments, set backs or the lack of anything that we had to live without. Some have had to live without the affection of a parent, although they were present in the home, some had to deal with the loss or absence of a parent, while others suffered under the bad choices of them.
'Shoes' can represent for some, a handicap or physical limitation in life.
We must wear the 'Shoes' God made to fit us. There's always the urge and desire to change our shoes and exchange them for the pair of our choice. It will never work! Those shoes never fit properly allowing us to walk through this life comfortably and securely.
In the Scripture text I gave, it tells us that from the time we were conceived in the womb, God had us covered. He saw every detail of our physical, and mental state as being formed, before we were ready to be born. He created every aspect of our being with all the specifications down to the minutest detail. You and I were custom made! No duplicates available!
Everything about us was created intentionally by God. Our features, our gait (the way we walk), our physical stature, our tone of voice, our emotional state (melancholic, sanguine, choleric, phlegmatic), etc... There is no coincident that we are who we are. Now grant it, we do have to work on getting rid of certain things that will impede our progress here below, but other than that, we were given life and the setting it came with for God's purposes.
So, whatever your 'Shoes' and what came with them, wear them to the glory of God! Heal from past wounds with the help of God and His word, and be better because of all your deficits. Reach higher heights despite disappointments and set backs and shine as true testimonies of God's grace upon your life no matter what!
And remember this; if there is anyone out there who has caused you pain, disappointment, or hurt, God promises to deal with them and give them what they deserve...even if they are a fellow believer. God has made every provision for us to walk in the 'Shoes' He has designed for our feet and to live out a victorious life For Him!
MORNING MEDITATION AND FOOD FOR THOUGHT!
"Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven."
I have been told by several people that they wouldn't walk into the doors of a church and all the reasons why. There are some who use this as their excuse, however, there are others who have legitimate reasons to feel the way they feel about attending churches.
Some have said that the hypocrisy was so real that they lumped all so called 'Christians' together as fake and false. Others have said that they have observed how 'Christians' treat each other negatively, and felt that they would be treated the same. There were money collection issues and out right sinful behavior that stumbled them as well.
When I am told these things, I don't turn a deaf ear to it, neither do I challenge the way they feel because I, too, have experienced all of the above, and then some, from so called, 'Christians'. I know the probability of these things happening. I too have been stumbled.
The only reasons I go through any church doors today, is because I have had serious encounters with Christ. In having an intimate, relationship with Him, I am able to sort through hindrances and obstacles and attend church services. I go to worship Him, because He has been the only one to have the answers to my questions and the power to meet my needs. I go to see where I can be of help to His people. Outside of what God has taught me personally, through His son, I wouldn't dare go to church or have anything to do with 'Christians'!
Seeing that some people feel the way they feel about attending churches, I have found that there are other ways to introduce them to God. Over the years, I have been a part of home Bible studies and found them to be of great help. They are intimate and personable and give way to hearing the powerful testimonies of Christ in the lives of people.
I would encourage you to think about having a home Bible study even if it is on a monthly basis. Invite those who other wise wouldn't attend church or religious meetings. You'd be surprise at what God would do for them!
Rom. 10:17 says, "Faith comes by hearing and hearing through the word of the Lord." Heb. 4:12 says, "The word of God is powerful and sharper than a two-edged sword."
As a writer, I enjoy giving you the honest side of truth! As an artist, I create what doesn't exist. Each day I look for new and creative ways to use every ability God has so graciously given me.