I am grateful to live in an apartment that is well maintained. Every 3 months a pest control company comes and spray to keep the bugs away. I can tell when it is time for them to come because either myself or a neighbor will have a dead bug. (Thankfully it was dead, don’t want those pests around.) Today as I was sweeping and mopping getting ready for them to come tomorrow I thought about the spiritual pests that like to invade our homes. How many of us can say we keep our homes spiritually guarded from pests? Prayer, praise and worship music, and reading scripture aloud in my home is a daily routine. Yet there are days when I am prompted by my spirit to pray for God’s protection and cleansing of my home. I ask Him to place a hedge of protection around my home and cover it in the blood of Jesus and occasionally anoint my doors with anointing oil. There have been times when I felt I was being told to sweep my floor and toss the dirt outside and tell the spirits, ‘If you don’t belong to God, you are not welcome here!’ I know this made me look strange to some of my neighbors, but that is okay. My home is a blessing from God and I need to take care of it in the physical and spiritual sense. Just like I put on my spiritual armor every day I need to armor up my home. I am not going to build a mote or put an electric fence around its perimeter but I can ask God to bless and protect my home and fill it with His Holy Spirit. Jesus is not only welcome in my home, He lives here with me. Shouldn’t I do my best to make Him welcome both day and night? What better way to keep the pests out than to have Jesus live within.
Have a blessed day!
Saturday I wrote Coincidence I don’t Think So . I had started it because I had wanted to vent because my computer had decided to quit working Friday, but it turned into a piece that was more about acknowledging that I had some idols in my life. Which I had discussed prior to my computer issues leading me to the conclusion that my computer problems was not a coincidence.
When I came home from work Sunday night I don’t know what made me think to turn on my computer but I did. It came on and worked like nothing had been wrong with it all. How this happened I cannot tell you, since Friday night after a friend who was a computer tech had worked on it for a good part of the evening till we decided to give up and pronounced it was dead.
I believe God teaches me lessons so that I can share them with others. I do not believe it was a coincidence that my computer went out on me after I had acknowledged that a lot of my computer time was wasted time and that it had become an idol in my life. It’s return to working was not a coincidence either. After I had publicly confessed my idols and repented God gave me His grace and showed me mercy knowing I really did not have the money to go and buy a new one. I will now be on guard as not to make my computer time an idol but be sure that it is used to be productive and to use it as a tool to further spread His message of Love and Grace.
Here are some steps you can take daily to help you in your relationship with Jesus.
1 Search yourself-do a self examination. After all god already knows our hearts, but do we?
2 Acknowledge your problem areas. It is like an addict, as long as they don’t acknowledge they have a problem they will continue to be an addict. Yet once they acknowledge to themselves, ‘Hey I don’t want to do this anymore, I have a problem’. Then they can get help.
3 Confess your problem, to God and someone you can trust. Scripture tells us to confess to one another. We don’t do this to make ourselves look bad or to feel guilt but so that we have someone to support us and help us be accountable for our actions. It is a way of shedding God’ light into our dark places.
4 Stop! What ever it was that you were doing that was damaging you and those close to you stop. To repent is to stop and turn from what you are doing and begin doing what is right. This is not easy for most people it requires for you to make a decision and the put effort into allowing yourself to change.
5 Receive His forgiveness. Allow Jesus to become the Lord of your life. Let His love transform you and make you a new creation. In Christ you are no longer who you used to be so do not let your past mistakes and problems hold you back.
Okay today I am venting a bit. A few weeks back I was having a discussion about the idols we have in our lives that we don’t even realize are idols. I confessed that I spent too much time on the computer as being one of my idols. I said I could rationalize some of the time for paying bills and the research I do for my Bible studies and the job hunting, then there is my writing and art, but to be honest spending hours playing mahjong is not being productive. My other electronic roommate and idol was my TV. Not long after this discussion did my internet go down, which effected both my computer time and TV time. I laughed and told God this is not a coincidence. I have come to a place in my life when God reveals things to me He really means business. Well the internet for my home was down for a week. Guess what? I lived! Yes It meant leaving the comfort of my home to use a computer elsewhere. Which is what I am doing today. You see after my internet was repaired, my computer decided it was going to call in sick, so I sent it to a friends for them to work on it. When it was returned it worked for a week and then decided it was going to quit all together. So here I am venting at the local Library. If I had known that by acknowledging my idols that I was going to be quickly stripped of them I might not have said anything, but at the same time I know anything that steals my time and keeps me from giving God my full attention really needs to go. Does this mean I can’t use a computer? Not at all. I can do things that I enjoy as long as it does not come before my time with Jesus. My Pastor ‘Doc’ has often said, “It’s time to get off of Facebook and into The Book!”
I have made plenty of excuses in the past saying there is nothing else for me to do. I live alone and my body limits my activity, and I am just taking a break from my problems. The truth is I would probably be in a better place if I didn’t keep taking breaks from my problems and spent more time with The Problem Solver. God deserves better from me. He should since He gave His best for me before I ever knew or acknowledged Him. So I am temporarily without a computer. I still have access when I need to use one. It just means that I will not be spending hours doing nothing and using the computer for more more important things than just passing time. Okay I am done venting.
Have a blessed day!
Who remembers when the convenience store 7 Eleven first changed it hours of operation from its hours of 7 am to 11 pm to being open 24 hours a day to seven days a week? The first store was actually in Austin Texas on a trial basis.This store made it convenient for customers who did not have time to shop during normal business hours. It changed how many larger stores operate today. Marketing is all about appealing to the customer. Make it easier for the customer and they will buy from you. Forget about the poor employee who has to work through the night and and holidays so they cannot spend time with their families. It’s all about making life convenient for the consumer.
Now stop and take a moment to look at your relationship with God. Yes He is available to you 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. Yet have you turned your relationship with Him into one of convenience? Do you go to Him only when it is convenient for your and to get only what you need at the moment? I have struggled with issues that have kept me from regular attendance at my church in the last year and it has bothered me a great deal. There has been transportation issues, having to work on days of service, and poor health. I have desperately fought to stay in contact and fellowship with other believers. My church began a bus ministry which has helped me get to church when I am not working and I am so grateful for this service. I have a few friends who come and Bible study with me in my home. Others who are kind enough to give me rides to doctors appointments and to the store when needed, and even occasionally treat me to a lunch or dinner. For these people I am so grateful that they give their time and care for me. For me God is not a convenience but a necessity. I would not have been blessed with such kind people in my life if not for Him. He provides for my every need. He deserves all of my time and my effort. Yet there have been times when I have been wrapped up in my problems and situations that I drifted away and barely gave Him a ‘Hello’, or ‘Thank You.’ I have even made excuses not to fellowship at times saying well there will be another service next week, its okay for me to take a break this week. I am grateful that He never takes a break from me. He is always there. Even when I did not acknowledge His presence. He patiently waited for me to turn to Him and give him my time and attention. I am sorry for all the times I treated Him like 7-Eleven store, and only gave Him time when I needed to purchase something for myself.
Too often it becomes easy to forget to make Jesus a priority in our lives because we know He is there when we need Him, we can forget He needs us too. He needs us serve the needs of the people. To gather together and fellowship, for whenever two or more are gathered in His name He is there with Him. Our relationship with Him is not one of convenience or one of just receiving. If you treated your husband or wife in this manner it would cause problems in your marriage. Why do we do this with God. He is our husband and our maker, and like any relationship it requires effort on both parts. He gave us everything isn’t it time to give Him all of us?
He is the Beginning and End of each of my days. I give to Him my praise and thanks.
Isaiah 44:6 (NKJV) 6 “Thus says the Lord, the King of Israel, And his Redeemer, the Lord of hosts: ‘I am the First and I am the Last;Besides Me there is no God.
Isaiah 48:12 (NKJV) 12 “Listen to Me, O Jacob, And Israel, My called: I am He, I am the First,I am also the Last.
“I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning andthe End,” says the Lord, “who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty.”
saying, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First andthe Last,” and, “What you see, write in a book and sendit to the seven churches which are in Asia: to Ephesus, to Smyrna, to Pergamos, to Thyatira, to Sardis, to Philadelphia, and to Laodicea.”
And He said to me, “It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. I will give of the fountain of the water of life freely to him who thirsts.
I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last.”
The Welcome mat outside your home is for more than decoration. It has a purpose, you are to use it to wipe the dirt off of the bottom of your shoes off so you do not track the dirt into the home.
My mother was Japanese and before you entered her home you took off your shoes before you entered her home. In biblical times there were servants who greeted guests and washed their feet. Jesus washed the feet of His disciples.
John 13:1-17 (NKJV)
Jesus Washes the Disciples’ Feet
13 Now before the Feast of the Passover, when Jesus knew that His hour had come that He should depart from this world to the Father, having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end.
2 And supper being ended,[a] the devil having already put it into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray Him, 3 Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He had come from God and was going to God, 4 rose from supper and laid aside His garments, took a towel and girded Himself. 5 After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel with which He was girded. 6 Then He came to Simon Peter. AndPeter said to Him, “Lord, are You washing my feet?”
7 Jesus answered and said to him, “What I am doing you do not understand now, but you will know after this.”
8 Peter said to Him, “You shall never wash my feet!”
Jesus answered him, “If I do not wash you, you have no part with Me.”
9 Simon Peter said to Him, “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head!”
10 Jesus said to him, “He who is bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean; and you are clean, but not all of you.” 11 For He knew who would betray Him; therefore He said, “You are not all clean.”
12 So when He had washed their feet, taken His garments, and sat down again, He said to them, “Do you know what I have done to you? 13 You call Me Teacher and Lord, and you say well, for so I am. 14 If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15 For I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you. 16 Most assuredly, I say to you, a servant is not greater than his master; nor is he who is sent greater than he who sent him. 17 If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.
When children still lived in my home I would tell them to wipe their feet. Living in an apartment that has floors that are all tiled. I can see the dirt that gets tracked in. The soles of your shoes get dirty, so before you enter a home it shows respect to wipe your feet before entering, so that you do not track dirt or anything else you may have stepped on into the home. After I swept off my welcome mat it came to me what kind of spiritual filth do we have clinging on to us. The soles of our shoes and feet are not the only comes in contact with dirt. We live in a fallen world and the effects of sin are everywhere we go. We have a spiritual battle we ace everyday. Our spirits battle the flesh and there is not one of us who has not sinned. (Romans 3:23 (NKJV) 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,)
I liked it when Peter told Jesus to wash not only his feet but all of him. (John 13:9) We need to kick off the filth of sin off of ourselves and not track the filth of the world and walk in the Light of Jesus and His righteousness.
So ‘Wipe your feet!’ Walk the straight and narrow. Walk in love, and walk in peace.