These two sisters had conflict with each other. They were in disagreement over something. They were told to be unified on the matter.
Often there are disagreement and disputes among Christians. The answer to the problem is for individuals to ask God for His mind on the situation. If there is some Scripture that directly addresses it, then go with what the word says. If if is something that needs prayer and seeking the face of the Lord, then both need to do that and let God’s word be the final word.
The problem often, is that we do neither of the above; which proves that we are not interested in what God’s thoughts are on the matter. We just want our own way.
Why can’t we solve issues among ourselves? Somewhere, someone has chosen to disobey God. Our pride, our flesh, our egos, and jealousies and envies rule.
Paul simply says to these two women to get on board with God’s mind and opinion. He uses God as the measure, he uses God as the focus, he uses God as the objective. Paul does not focus on what their issue was or who was right or wrong. He doesn’t try to mediate between them. He simply says, “What God thinks and says is the perspective you both need.”
That’s the answer to any conflict among saints in general! Once we make God our objective and give Him the place in our lives, the less conflict, or little to no conflict, we will have with others.
Unity depends on one's spirit and attitude. The absence of unity brings all sorts of problems that limit the Holy Spirit. The individuals involved in the dispute won’t receive direction from the Lord. They will function with diminished power and direction.
This same thing applies to:
3. Leaders in the church
We will have disagreements as humans, but we have to get on board with the Lord and His mind, if not, the situation between people will only grow into something worse, and take on legs and arms that will do great damage to each other, and it most definitely will spill over into the rest of the church. It could divide the church!
There are some things that we will never agree on, so do I take the low place, humbling myself for the sake of unity and peace, or do I fight tooth and nail for my position to not only be heard, but received? Do I force my point or, or do I let it go, and leave it to the Lord to handle without causing division, dis-unity or problems?
Although we have differing opinions, we can be of the same mind in the Lord. When you choose what is pleasing to the Lord, you can leave Him to either change the other person’s mind or help them to come to some sort of understanding with you. In the event neither happens, you have to agree to disagree, yet, keep the peace and unity between you both for Christ’s sake, and not take it personally where you stop speaking to each other or being kind. When you take the disagreement personally, you place the person in the position of enemy, or against you, and act out negatively against them because they don’t see things your way. This is bad. Imagine what would eventually happen to a marriage when that’s done, or a friendship, or within a committee who’s decision will impact the benefit of the local church, or if the leaders of the church exhibit such behavior.
We live in a society where everyone is comparing themselves with themselves. How senseless and futile is that? People are always imitating other people! Where is the uniqueness?
If God wanted you and I to be the same, He would have created us exactly alike, we would have been carbon copies of one another. God is a God of variety! No two persons are alike, and why would they want to be?
Often people get ticked if you don't think like they do, or you don't see things in the same way taking a totally different point of view. In essence, they want you to be like them.
You and I were created, by God, to be different. We won't be effective unless we own that! Anyone who can't accept you for who you are must be left at the curb, respectfully speaking.
God has given you skill/s and gift/s that are custom made just for you. There may be a million others on the planet who have the same abilities, but no one, and I mean no one, can execute them like you can. Everyone brings a different flavor and touch; adding a totally different ingredient. Not everyone is for everyone. For instance, two people can say the same thing, yet, it's appeal will be different depending on who's doing the listening. What works for one individual, will not necessarily work for another in the same way. God knew that when He gave you what He gave you. Part of your task in life is to reach certain people.
Never desire to be like others! You cannot fit shoes that were never made for you to wear! Own your uniqueness and love every aspect of who God made you to be! Don't aim to fit in! Always stand out!!
Develop every aspect of who you are. Tweak the things that could be better and change anything that could hinder you from being the best you. There is no need to change the way you express yourself, although, You may have to change 'HOW' you do it, but stay true to yourself in the process.
There will always be individuals who won't like you. It's been quoted that, "90% of the people don't like you, they just like what you've got" (Miles Munroe). He may be right! It doesn't matter what you do, everyone isn't gonna' like you for whatever reasons. You have to be okay with that. There will be others who will appreciate you because you will be just the thing God ordered for them.
Imagine the impact you could be making on your world (environment) simply being the 'You' you were made to be! God is counting on you to do just that. Embrace yourself with all of your flaws, cracks, and scars. Those elements are needed too! God uses everything!
Your spiritual gift is an unique one! It is something you have the natural lean for. Don't neglect it! Develop it, cherish it, and use it for God's approval, not mans. Never take it for granted!
God is able to guide you, and place you in the proper settings to use what He has given you. Don't worry about opportunities; they will come in due time. When your gift is developed enough, God will open the way for it to be noticed and used.
No one can do what you can do in the way you can do it, always remember that! If you don't use it, you will eventually loose it!
Do You and Only You!
When God provides the opportunity for you to be acknowledged, or chosen for something, it is His will!
God does not stand in every open door. Not every open door is for you to walk through!
God will use you at a time when He can get optimum results. Everyone associated with that open door will benefit from what God has given you to bring to the table.
There are times when you may feel as if you were the better person for the job, or the one who could bring what was necessary and needed to the situation, only to be overlooked, passed over, not considered, or left out. It can be disappointing and discouraging. We've all been there at some point in time, or another. Sometimes individuals are passed over simply because of personal feelings towards them. Whatever the reason, I have learned that God is always in the details and He allows what He allows for a reason.
When decisions are being made as to who gets what position, or who should be chosen to participate in a function or endeavor, there are people, humans, who have legitimate and non-legitimate reasons that influence the outcome. Everyone has an opinion. Some reasons may be valid while others are not. The Lord God is in the midst observing and listening to all that is said in those private meetings, be it job related, family related, or church related.
No one has the authority but God. At the end of the day, He decides, He sways the decision, and it all coincides with His will. That's what I love about God! As a Christian, I can sit back quietly, and wait for what is best. God opens the door that is best for me! It doesn't matter how it all came about or the persons involved, I can always count on Him to place me just where I need to be at any given time.
There are times when the Lord can use you and I, but He refrains from doing so, because there is strife and contention involved. God does not operate in the midst of strife! "Let nothing be done through strife and vain glory" [Philipians 2:3]. He can allow the situation to take place without you. Where there is strife, there is every evil work, the Scripture tells us.
God will always approve of activities where He can get the pleasure and the glory. He has an ultimate goal in mind when He chooses to use us, or when He wants to strategically place us somewhere. He knows under the right circumstances, and at the right time, when that skill or gift He has given us, will be needed the most.
Have you ever said this? "I blew that one" or "I should have been the one", "I'm the best person for that", "I have the experience they need." Say those things no more! If the Lord God does not open a particular door for you, there is a divine reason!
In the New Testament, there were times when the Lord didn't go to certain cities or into certain villages because there was no faith to be found in them. He went somewhere else! God is looking to accomplish something spiritual when it comes to service attached to His name or placing us in a certain position. When He knows that the end of a thing won't bring Him honor and glory, He removes us from the equation, hence the comment, "God wasn't in that!"
When you and I are in a right relationship with God, He leads us, and directs us to be involved in things that He can sign His name to with pleasure and satisfaction. So, the next time you are up for a position at work, see an opportunity right up your alley to serve at church, or are praying for a situation, and it passes you by, remember this; God was not in that! He may have been in it for someone else, but not for you! He has something else in mind that you are more excellently suited for. God knows when to use you!
God will never withhold anything good from an obedient child!
"A great door for effective work has opened to me, and there are many who oppose me."
1 Cor. 16:9
The Apostle Paul's Christian life was wrought with opposition, pain, and sufferings of all sorts, simply because he dedicated himself to preaching the gospel. He was converted and saved for that purpose. He planted churches in many regions, leaving responsible persons to guide these new believers in the faith. Paul caused quite a stir among religious groups and those in the political arena.
There will always be a price to pay for serving God! The spiritual gift He has imparted to you and I come with a price attached. Any service for the Lord meets with opposition. Each time I receive an opportunity to be a voice for God and His interests, I'm sure to experience opposition of some kind. How much more for those who are preaching the gospel and winning souls for Christ!
Philipians 1:29 says, "For unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake." We are to expect opposition and problems. The Scripture also tells us that all who live godly will suffer persecution. All, not some, and Will, not might. If you and I are living our lives in obedience to God, we can expect opposition, injustice, pain, and suffering. We can add to that, rejection, ostracizing, mocking, hatred, lies, and perhaps even bodily harm. God never keeps His children in the dark concerning the things they should know in advance.
I don't know about you, but I would rather get the heads up on what I could possible go through than to be left in the dark. Does knowing make it any easier? Absolutely not, but when you develop an attachment to God, and your bond with Him is growing stronger and deeper, the fear and trepidation becomes secondary. I think the Apostle Paul experienced that. He was ready to die at any point in time while in ministry work.
Opposition for a Christian comes in different ways and in different forms. Some may be ostracized on their jobs because of their Christianity while others are constantly targeted and plotted against. Any thing that resembles the face of Christ, will eventually bring problems. If you are ever a recipient of ill treatment on the job or anywhere, pray for your enemies and pray for yourself.
The Apostle Paul, in Philipians 1, mentions the wisdom of God. He saw the wisdom of God in his imprisonment. He stood before all sorts of men in the political arena, mentioning over and over again, the gospel of Jesus Christ. He got the opportunity, through being incarcerated, to share his testimony time and time again. It was God's wisdom that had him locked up on house arrest and detained for 2 years. God knew what He was after, and the souls of men He wanted to reach with the gospel.
There will be times when you and I will be placed in certain situations where we feel as if there's an injustice against us, but if we can halt that thought, even for a minute, we just might see it as a opportunity from God. There is something divine in the making, and whatever we're going through, is from the hand of God, with a precise purpose.
We pray for opportunities much of the time, but do we equate with that opportunity, opposition? We get excited when God answers our prayers for that chance to represent Him. We sometimes have grandiose ideas as to how we will go about speaking on God's behalf and the desired response we're expecting from those around us. God will always use you and I when we walk pleasing to Him, but He will also allow us to be the victims of opposition among other things.
Opposition also comes from the Christian community. Not every one will be supportive of the ministry God has given you. There will be times when those whom you least expect, fail to be in your corner, or they turned on you, while influencing others to do the same. Know this; God allowed, God ordained! Keep pressing on and forward with what God told you to do! Don't look to the left nor to the right! Persevere stronger and harder! There is one thing that opposition proves, and it is this; whatever opposes, threatens; and whatever threatens, has to be treated with strong opposition!
Be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might! His grace will be sufficient and the outcome will be God glorifying!
Life can sometimes shake your confidence in God! It can threaten, undermine, and disappoint you. Things happen that really make you wonder where God is and if He stepped away for a moment.
Truthfully, it's all a matter of perspective. Generally, we assess and evaluate negative experiences with being bad, unnecessary, and detrimental. That will always be what it appears on the surface. Being human, our first reactions to challenges and disappointments are usually seen as a negative.
My thoughts turn to Jochebed, Moses' mother, Esther, Naboth, Joseph, David, and others who experienced a powerful punch while 'Doing Life'.
Jochebed's young son's life was being threatened. All the male babies of the Hebrews were being annihilated. What stress and pressure and fear permeated their environment. Jochebed, who was a woman of prayer, put her faith in action. As we know, faith without works is dead. She found a way where her son would survive the threats of the enemy. As oppose to folding her hands in fear, and distraught, she folded her hands in prayer, and God gave the solution. After all, God was in the details of the enemie's plans. God knew why He allowed it in the first place. Moses became the leader of the Israelites, and a friend of Gods, whom He spoke with face to face! What a turn of events. Things started out threatening and ended in victory, not only for Moses and his family, but an entire nation of people!
Esther, now queen of Babylon, was adjusting to her position when the news of a threat of annihilation of her people, the Jews, hit her ears. That was when it all started to make sense as to why she was chosen to be queen in the first place. The king had not called for her for quite some time, and she couldn't just walk into his presence. She summons the women closest to her, and encourages a prayer meeting. Her next move would either be the death of her or deliverance for her people. She put her welfare, and life on the line, and went into the presence of the king anyway. God gave her the wisdom, and the discernment, and the process she was to execute in order to nail wicked Haman. Deliverance came to Israel! Their lives were spared!
Naboth was a man like any other who was busy with what God gave him to do when King Ahab showed up talking about, "Give me your vineyard." Really now. Ahab's obsession with Naboth's vineyard cost Naboth his life. The king's wife, Jezebel, took it upon herself to get that vineyard for her husband, and concocted a plot behind her husband's back, and had Naboth killed. Why would God allow that, you would ask? God's ways are past finding out. But know this, He allowed it for His honor and glory. No obedient man dies before his time. God was calling this brother home. We all have an expiration date! Death comes when it comes. Life packed a punch for Naboth that day. No doubt, he died with courage, because his confidence was in his God!
Joseph, at age 17, got a raw deal, so it seemed. His own brethren, his own siblings, because of jealousy and envy, did him in. Originally, they were going to kill him. Joseph gets sold and then he's lied on by Potiphar's wife, and thrown into prison. Years later, he is released because he revealed the hidden meaning behind a dream the king of Egypt dreamt. Joseph becomes the governor of Egypt. Had Joseph not gone through all those challenges and trials, he would not have saved his family, and all of Egypt, during the famine. God had a greater plan in mind when He allowed the wickedness of Joseph's brethren to prevail.
David, the shepherd boy with a harp, was simply doing his chores when life changed for him. He was anointed at a very young age and ended up slaying a giant who defied the army of the living God. King Saul and his men were in fear of Goliath, and David, a stripling of a boy, shows up with his trusty sling shot, and the rest is history. David is praised by the women and Saul becomes jealous and envious to the point of wanting to kill David. Now, David didn't ask for all of this; he was simply doing what was normal for him to do. But, as a young man, he had faith in the God of Israel and it gave him the strength to stand up to Goliath. Now he is running for his life for how ever many years. Long story short, David becomes Israel's second king. David went from a lowly chore of watching dirty, stink sheep, to becoming king. He was the youngest of Jesse's sons and the most insignificant.
All of these individuals were faced with challenges that were hard. All of them were subject to like passions such as you and I, and all of them were living their lives day by day when life packed a punch. They had confidence in God!
Confidence in God is when:
1. You know your value without someone having to tell you
2. You quietly wait on God when others are chosen instead of you
3. You are able to stand alone and be okay with it
4. You accept the good, the bad, and the ugly, situations as aids for your spiritual development
5. You experience peace and calm despite the storm
6. You can pray for your enemies, accusers, and abusers
7. You hide yourself under the shadow of His wings
8. You see the blessing in everything, I mean everything
9. You believe that all things will work for your good
10. Your greater desire is to fulfill your god-given purpose in life
Have Confidence In God!!!
"Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”
1 Corinthians 15:33
Who has the front row seat in your life? Who is within your inner circle? These are important questions to ask yourself because we are definitely known by the company we keep!
The Lord Jesus had 12 friends who kept company with Him regularly. All 12 shared not only the same faith, but a desire to know Christ. They were growing and learning together. They were found in the Lord's presence witnessing the same miracles, and listening to the same teachings.
Friendships are necessary and important. Relationships with others can enrich us, inspire us and spur us on along the christian journey. Just merely having 'Christian' friends isn't enough. What I mean is this; it isn't going to be sufficient enough to just have a friend who professes to be a 'Christian', or who attends a church, per se. Many people claim to be Christians or warm a church bench, yet, fail to show evidence that their lives are controlled by the Holy Spirit. Some are carnal and worldly in their thinking and practices. You will have to discern between who is truly obedient to God vs. the ones who are not.
We are to find benefit from our friendships and interactions with others. Typically, we make connections with people who we find some common ground with. They are individuals with whom we can relate to or share similarities with.
It is impossible to forge godly ties with those who do not share your faith! You cannot have a 'Best Friend' (BFF) who is an unbeliever!!! Your lifestyles would be based on totally different principles. More than not, an unsaved friend will influence you in their direction and you could find yourself taking on their perspective and ideals.
In order to grow spiritually without being hindered, or stumbled, you will have to choose your friends wisely. You want relationships that will influence you for Christ, and not tempt you into a carnal and worldly mindset. You might even find that you may have to let some people go, that at one point in time, were your friends. Sometimes we out grow relationships, or we find that they are simply, no longer, what they should be.
The people we surround ourselves with will speak to where we're at in our spiritual lives.
The 12 disciples were the Lord's friends, and Peter, James, and John were the closest to Him. They were in His inner circle. There were things that He shared with them in particular. Can you share deep and intimate things with your inner circle of friends? Can you receive the right advice and guidance and support from them? Do they come from a godly perspective with their suggestions? Do they share the word of God with you in a way where you see that they are growing in Christ, gaining a deeper knowledge of Him?
Friends who are obedient to God will not engage in behavior or conversations that God wouldn't approve of.
1. Respect others
2. Lovingly Correct you when you're wrong
3. Care about your spiritual development
4. Remove themselves from all gossip
5. Are not afraid to stand up for what is right
6. Are learning and growing in the faith themselves
7. Draw your attention to the Lord
8. Will bear your burdens as their own
9. Are supportive and reliable
10. Are not jealous or envious of others
Surround yourself with those who are seeking to honor God and you will not be hindered or stumbled along the Christian pathway! You will experience a bond that is a blessing, and a valuable, rewarding relationship for all time!
A Compliment: A polite expression of praise and respect.
You can always tell when a person is having a ‘Phony’ moment. They are complimenting you or praising you and over doing it. They aren’t even your friend like that, and have never invested in you as a person. They are selfish and self seeking. There is something they want from you. They may even want to use you for a particular reason. Flattery can lend itself to ruin! This is what God says about such persons, "He that blesses his friend with a loud voice, rising early the morning, it shall be counted a curse to him" (Proverbs 27:14), because it's nothing but flattery!
Compliments are good and honorable, and healthy, but only if they come at the appropriate time for the right occasion and for the right reason.
Compliments show support, encouragement and respect, and they can spur the individual on to succeed even more.
A person who is able to give a compliment shows that they truly appreciate another’s gift, talent, ability, or particular action or reaction they took.
Failure to compliment another shows selfishness, jealousy, envy, pride, and ones own inadequacies.
Not only do we praise others, in the world, for their talents and gifts, we put our money behind their products. We support their activities as well. How much more, should we be supportive, towards our fellows in the body of Christ, who have and are benefitting the Lord's people in some way.
Some engage in ministry work that advances the cause of Christ. Do we support them with encouragement of any kind? Have we backed them with encouraging words, or even possibly, financially?
Christ said, "Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to build him up (encourage or support)" (Romans 15:2)
Look at the well deserved compliments Christ gave to the following persons:
The Widow and Her Mite : " She did what she could" (liberal with the little she had).
Mary (Martha's sister): For having "The Better Part" (spent more time listening to Him than busy serving).
The Centurion: "Not even in Israel have I found such faith."
The Canaanite Woman with the demon possessed daughter: "Oh woman great is your faith."
James and John: "Sons of Thunder."
John The Baptist: "No man born of woman was greater than this prophet."
Peter: "Thou art Rock."
Mary Magdalene: "She hath loved much."
In the end, Christ will compliment all those who remained faithful and steadfast to him on the earth with: "Well done, good and faithful servant."
HE IS OUR EXAMPLE!
"You know me completely, and watch over me."
"O Lord, you have searched me and known me! You know when I sit down and when I rise up; you discern my thoughts from afar. You search out my path and my lying down and are acquainted with all my ways. Even before a word is on my tongue, behold, O Lord, you know it altogether. You hem me in, behind and before, and lay your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is high; I cannot attain it." Psalm 139:1-6 ESV
I want to thank my cousin, Russ, for sharing these verses with me this morning! It was so timely, as today happens to be My Birthday! I woke up this morning meditating on all of God's goodness and mercy to me!
Had Satan had his way, I wouldn't be here, but God thought it necessary! I exist solely because of God's purposes!
I could tell you some stories, I could share my triumphs, and my trials. I can tell you what He's done for me lately. My saga is ongoing, it's growing limbs and my roots go deep. It's been an interesting journey with the Lord.
Only God can sustain us and keep us. Some of us are doing 'Hard Time' on the earth. For some, the challenges and trials are overwhelming, yet God keeps them from being overwhelmed and swept under. Others are facing life threatening challenges and frightening circumstances. God has His hand upon them as well. He gives His special 'Grace' to them as they endure the unthinkable. What a journey some of us are on.
Today, I reflect on His pass mercies, and I see where He's brought me from! It's all amazing to me; a little girl, fatherless and motherless, with no home to call her own, living from house to house, from the pit to the palace, how thankful I've become!
We all have a story to tell. We all have things that we could cry about everyday. We all have had our share of ups and downs. We are existing on the face of this earth for a necessary and a much needed purpose. It is crucial that we not waste the years God has so graciously lent us. When we see Him face to face, we must have something to show for all that He's given.
This particular day, December 29th, may not hold much meaning to you, but it holds great significance for me! I should not be alive. I should not have been here. I can recall every instance where life and breath threatened to leave me. I am kept daily by the power of God!
I am thankful for all those who crossed, and still cross my path, with a message from God, to encourage and lift me up. I am thankful for the Christian love I have experienced from those who have been with God. It really showed. I am grateful for the outstretched arms in my hour of need and the compassion they showed. I saw the face of the Lord as He tenderly ministered to me through them. I say, "Thank You'' to my abusers, my oppressors, and all my enemies, because of your afflictions, I've been able to see the face of God in powerful ways; for I was able, under those circumstances, to hear Him clearly.
As 2017 comes to a close, may we reflect on all we have, and are, because of God's mercy and grace. May we try just a little bit harder, each day, as we move into 2018. May we also anticipate His eminent return!
Thank you for reading my blog posts! Thank you for stopping by and visiting this website! Thank you for following me throughout social media! Thank you for allowing me to share my life experiences with you and if I have said anything that made a difference in your life, Praise the Lord and To God Be All The Glory!!!
Have A Blessed and Prosperous New Year!!!
"Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep; In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness. Beside those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches. Who is weak, and I am not weak? who is offended, and I burn not?" 2 Cor. 11:24-29
I have been around Christians and the Christian community most of my life. I have attended hundreds of conferences, Bible studies, Church sessions, over the years. I have heard my share of pontificating by those who considered themselves students of the Bible or teachers of it. I have certainly had my fill of 'Biblical Information'; I say that will all respect.
As a Christian, I have learned the importance of 'Experience'. Often, we do not understand the knowledge we have received until we have an experience that relates to the information we have stored in the brain. While knowledge is needed and necessary, experience, at some point, has to accompany it.
The people I listen to the most, and primarily, are the individuals who are able to back their knowledge with experience. I can remember, to this very day, some powerful experiences that were shared with me from believers who suffered some incredible things. The way in which they spoke of Christ, and the clear understanding they had gained from Scripture, confirmed for me that their walk with God was as real as it gets. They were authentic, and they empowered me in my faith journey. As a result, I kept trusting in God!
The Apostle Paul, went through some incredibly hard, and dangerous stuff all because he was living in obedience to God. Satan had a serious problem with Paul! He never saw it coming. He never would have imagined that Paul would ever be converted because he had him just where he wanted him. Paul was persecuting Christians and consenting to their deaths. He was the right hand man for the devil and he was doing a banging job at it.
Once Satan realized that Paul wasn't turning back from his conversion, he wanted to kill him! He feels the same way about all Christians! Given the opportunity, Satan would kill all Christians! He is doing so in many corners of the earth today! There are many martyrs for Christ and has been for eons, but only when God signed off on it for His own purposes.
When the Apostle Paul instructed Christians, in the early church age, to do something or not to do something, he knew what he was talking about. Not only did Paul have deep convictions concerning his faith, he had the experiences to back it up. From the very onset of his conversion, and how it all happened, was quite unusual. He heard the voice of the Lord God, literally, and became blind! What a powerful start to the ministry work God was calling him to.
I don't know about you, but as far as I am concerned, I am not interested in constant pontificating where biblical things are concerned. I'm looking to see what the person/s have to back it up. First and foremost, is their lifestyle and behavior consistent with what they say or preach? Secondly, what have they endured for the sake of Christ? What have they suffered? What price have they paid?
My life has been deeply impacted and enriched from the Christians who have endured and maintained consistency in their lives. Again, they have stories and rich experiences to back up Scripture, so when they have something to say or to pontificate about, I'm all ears. I'm all the way 'In' with them because their walk and journey with God is For Real!
The list of things that the Apostle Paul endured and suffered is beyond anything I can relate to, but it is real and it testifies to the level of faith and trust he place in the Lord God. He states that it was a privilege and an honor to suffer for Christ. Incredible! He gloried in his infirmities because of who it was he did it for! Now here's a man worth listening to. Many had no appreciation for him and wanted to get rid of him. He states that all of the opposition, and dangerous things that came against him, was because of his faith.
What have you or I endured and suffered because of our faith? What price have we paid because of it? How many stories can you tell? How many stories can I tell or are we just pontificating about things too wonderful for us to even enter into or remotely understand?
If you have vital and powerful experience with Christ, it is imperative that you share it. I believe in that! How could your faith or my faith be taken seriously or seen as real if we keep our mouths clamped shut about what we have learned by experience with God? It's yours and my testimony! It is confirmation to our faith! It's what authenticates us from merely having knowledge, but an understanding of God (not totally, but as much as He, God, would give us).
We have to be classified as 'Real Christians', not just professing ones. We need to have powerful stories to share with the world around us. People don't want to HEAR, "Come to my church", or "I'm a Christian", or "You need to get saved." They need to SEE the 'Why' come to my church, the 'Why' I'm a Christian, and they need to SEE the 'Why' they need to get saved! We could be a live, powerful, walking testimony that convinces them that God is indeed real! People are tired of hearing stuff, they need to see the stuff through our experiences and testimonies. The Christians in Paul's day knew the stuff he was suffering and the things that happened to him. He could tell them to be encouraged, because they saw how he was going through it.
The Apostle Paul has left us with a power house and living proof of his life and walk with God! He's didn't just pontificate! The false teachers of his day didn't even subject themselves to what he suffered, and that ought to tell us something!
"Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous;
but who is able to stand before envy?"
What a verse in Scripture! God is trying to tell us something that is worth paying attention to!
Scripture is clear! Wrath and anger can, and will eventually be appeased, but envy, never!! Envy is a real problem! What it causes people to do, is the unthinkable. It is a bottomless pit! I could tell you some stories, you would have a hard time believing. I could actually write an entire book about it!
An envious person is not to be played with! Envy is a dangerous emotion if not kept in check! There are many instances in the Bible that support that thought! Look at what Joseph's brothers did, and Hannah's adversary, Peninnah did, Leah and Rachel, and the sad events between King Saul and David and not to forget the Apostle Paul!
Although Envy is synonymous with Jealousy, there's a slight difference. Jealousy says, "I wish I had what I see you have." Envy says, "Not only do I wish I had what you have, I will do everything within my power to keep you from having it!" This makes envy even the more dangerous!
The Envious person is always showing you who they are! They are essentially telling you the following:
1. Their insecurities have swallowed them up.
2. They are hurting and in great emotional pain.
3. They admire you, like you, but hate you all at the same time.
4. They want what you have.
5. They need constant affirmation or else.
6. When opportunity strikes, they will sabotage you.
7. They are not to be trusted!
8. They will go to great lengths to see you punished!
Study the story of King Saul and David to see how many of these points you can trace.
No amount of counseling can help a person to be free from this malady because it stems from something deeper. Its root can be found in the person's childhood and the negative events of it. Somewhere along the line, they were deprived, hurt and damaged. Not everyone who has had a negative childhood becomes an envious person. There are some qualifying differences. You also have to factor in the personality and temperament of the person. We all respond to negative things differently; some to the hurt and peril of themselves.
Don't be fooled! You cannot forge a healthy friendship or relationship with an envious or jealous person! They are not capable of developing true friendships! The man who seeks to change a jealous woman (by love, pleasing her, gifts, endless company), will only drive himself crazy! He could be the best man on earth, but that will not make a jealous or envious woman secure within herself! The same is for the woman with a jealous husband or boyfriend! Look at the amount of young women who were murdered by their husbands or boyfriends because of jealousy! Never date or marry a person who is envious or jealous!!!! Don't interpret their behavior as 'Love' for you!!! It's sick and unhealthy!
Only God can free a person from such behavior provided they let Him into the deep, dark, recesses of their heart. They would have to be willing to let God address all of their negative emotions and actions associated with their hurt and pain. No human is capable of accomplishing this for them!
Keep a safe distance from anyone who has shown you behavior that suggest that they are envious or jealous of you. They are destroyers of everything good! They will undermine you, lie on you, scheme against you, and harm you if given the opportunity! I give you the honest side of truth! I know this from personal experience. Their specialty is when they can convince others to come against you, and the simple minded, foolish, unsuspecting individuals, are their favorites to manipulate and to use.
Envy destroys fellowship among believers; it destroys families; it destroys the work atmosphere; and it destroys churches!
Never forget the above Scripture text! File it away in your heart!
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.