Christian

So You’re Angry

One morning, God stopped me in the middle of something (I thought) was very important and gave me a lesson in discipline. This is what happened:

I was studying my Bible to prepare a lesson for the Women’s Bible Study when the phone rang. The church secretary informed me that the room I had reserved for the Bible Study would not be available because someone else needed it.

What?! Are you kidding me? So what? 

(Little did I know, the Lord was getting ready to take me down a completely different path than the one I was on.)

It was hard to continue preparing my Bible lesson when I so angry. I thought, They can’t just take my room! This is ridiculous! Who do they think they are? That’s not fair!

I knew my attitude was wrong, but I couldn’t help it. I felt justified.

Then a Scripture came to my mind.

“Above all else, guard your heart,” came the still small voice. (Proverbs 4:23)

Honestly, I didn’t really want to, but I listened. Then another Scripture came to my mind. “Do not think of yourselves more highly than you ought.” (Romans 12:3) and “Honor one another above yourselves.” (Romans 12:10)

Then, God said to me, “Forgive”.

“For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your Heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.” (Matthew 6:14-15)

As an act of my will, I forgave. But I still felt really annoyed. Then the Lord brought another Scripture to my mind. “See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up.” Hebrews 12:15

To forgive is a decision, but I knew that if I kept rehearsing this over and over in my mind, bitterness would take root. I needed God’s grace.

Thank God we can “Come boldly to the throne of grace … and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16

What is our time of need? It is when we are too weak to do something in our own strength. The Lord told Paul, “My grace is sufficient, …. for my power is made perfect in weakness.2 Corinthians 12:9

Hebrews 13:9 says, “It is good to be strengthened by God’s grace.”

Oh how we need to rely on God’s grace to serve Him!

“Let us have grace whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear.” Hebrews 12:28 KJV

“And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.” 2 Corinthians 9:8

God was teaching me that I can easily justify a  selfish attitude. But if I want others to see the love of God through me, I must walk in His ways.

It wasn’t the circumstances in question that were important. The real issue was – would I guard my heart? He taught me to rely on Him because His grace is sufficient.

If you need God’s grace today, go boldly to the Throne of Grace.

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

realchristianwomen.blog 

Photo by Ryan Franco on Unsplash

All Scripture references are from the NIV unless otherwise noted.

 

Christian

Why Do I Blog? To Be Followed or To Follow Him?

Corrie ten Boom said, “If God has called you, do not spend time looking over your shoulder to see who is following you.” And she is someone whose advice I respect.

So why do we blog? Why do we write? As Christian writers, we say it’s to tell people about the Lord Jesus Christ and His love. But we must be careful that our ultimate desire is to follow Him, not to be followed. He will guide us by His Word.

“Your word is a lamp for my feet,
    a light on my path.” Psalms 119:105 NIV

This is especially true for those of us who want people to follow our blog, FaceBook, or Instagram. Although we are encouraged when readers decide to follow us, that cannot be our guiding force.

What good would it be if millions followed our blog, but God wasn’t using it to speak to any of them? It would be better, by far, to reach a handful of people that God was using us to encourage and bring hope.

“Our greatest fear should not be of failure but of succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter.” –Francis Chan

Acts 20:20 states that Paul taught “from house to house”. And in verse 24, he says, “In every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me.”

The Apostle Paul risked his life to teach from house to house. I was struck by the fact that he did not consider himself too important to reach out to a small number of people.

As we fix our eyes on Jesus and follow Him, He will accomplish His purpose in our lives and in our writing.

Should we develop our skills and study our craft in order to be the best writer we can be? Absolutely!  The Bible says, Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord … It is the Lord Christ you are serving. Colossians 3:23-24 NIV

I am convinced that the more closely I follow Him, the more He will use me. We must not despise the day of small beginnings. (Zechariah 4:10) If only one person is encouraged by what you wrote, God has used you! God cares about individual people.

Jesus said, See that you do not despise one of these little ones. For I tell you that their angels in heaven always see the face of my Father in heaven. What do you think? If a man owns a hundred sheep, and one of them wanders away, will he not leave the ninety-nine on the hills and go to look for the one that wandered off? And if he finds it, truly I tell you, he is happier about that one sheep than about the ninety-nine that did not wander off. Matthew 18:10-14

Nothing thrills me more than for a reader to tell me, “I needed this!” or “This spoke to me.” Then I know that God has used me.

May we always follow Him with our whole heart and pray that He will use us to accomplish His purposes in our writing.

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

¹Corrie ten Boom is the author of The Hiding Place.

Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

realchristianwomen.blog 

Bible

Our Role As God’s Ambassador

Do you sometimes feel like you don’t fit in? You may need to remind yourself that if you are a follower of Jesus Christ, this world is not your home. Your home is in heaven and you are an ambassador for Christ in a foreign land.

“We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us.” 2 Corinthians 5:20 NIV

“Friends, this world is not your home, so don’t make yourselves cozy in it. Don’t indulge your ego at the expense of your soul. Live an exemplary life among the natives so that your actions will refute their prejudices. Then they’ll be won over to God’s side and be there to join in the celebration when he arrives.” 1 Peter 2:11-12 The Message

An ambassador is a “diplomatic official of the highest rank sent by one sovereign or state to another as its resident representative”.¹

We must remind ourselves that this is our role. We are ambassadors sent by God. I think it helps us to live a life a worthy of our calling when we think of ourselves as an ambassador.

“But all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ [making us acceptable to Him] and gave us the ministry of reconciliation [so that by our example we might bring others to Him]” 2 Corinthians 5:18 AMP

An ambassador is sent to a foreign land to reflect the official message of his country. God has sent us into the world with the message of reconciliation.

“… we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel [that tells the good news of salvation through faith in Christ…” 1 Thessalonians 2:4 AMP

However, actions speak louder than words. Talking about Jesus is important, but how we live speaks louder than our words. Caring about others is vital.

 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.  By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John 13:34-35

“Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ…” Ephesians 5:2 NLT

 

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

¹ Dictionary.com

Photo by Bewakoof.com Official on Unsplash

realchristianwomen.blog 

 

 

Christian

Jesus Talks About Wealth

Our Sunday School lesson was taken from Luke 16:1-9.  It can be difficult to understand, depending on which translation you read. We grasped for the true meaning with some difficulty and interesting discussion. I couldn’t wait to get home and search for understanding. Perhaps you studied the same lesson.

Jesus told His disciples a story about a rich man whose financial manager was accused of wasting his possessions. So, naturally the rich man fired his manager.

Worried about his future, the manager took immediate action by reducing the debts of the people who owed money to his master in hopes they would like him and invite him into their homes when he was out of a job.

Jesus said, “The master commended the dishonest manager because he had acted shrewdly. For the people of this world are more shrewd in dealing with people of their own kind than are the people of the light.” Luke 16:8

He is saying, “Look, the people of this world are clever. They think about how to prepare for their future. They’re shrewd. But the people of the light (believers) aren’t shrewd in their dealings with money. What!?

Jesus is prompting His disciples to be shrewd, not dishonest, shrewd (wise) with how they use wealth. He tells them that the dishonest manager used money to prepare for the future, and so should they.  Then, He compares the people who will welcome the manager into their homes with the new converts who will welcome us into Heaven.

Jesus continues, “Use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings.” Luke 16:9

In the blink of an eye, this life will be gone, and so will all our money. But eternity is forever. Jesus is saying the disciples should use their wealth to bring unbelievers to Christ so that these converts will welcome them (the disciples) into their homes in eternity.

In other words, if they were shrewd (like the people of this world), they would be shrewd in preparing for their lives in eternity. They would use worldly wealth to build the kingdom of God.

How do I know this? Because Jesus goes on to say, “… So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches?” Luke 16:11

What are “true riches”? Well, it’s not worldly wealth. That we know. I believe “true riches” refers to treasure we will receive in Heaven.

In Matthew 6:20 Jesus says, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven...”

Click the link below to read this parable in the Amplified translation.

Luke 16:1-14 AMP

  • What do you think Jesus is teaching us with this parable?
  • Do you think we focus on this present life more than the life we will have with God in Heaven when we leave this world behind?
  • Do you think Christians make God’s work a priority in their lives?
  • Doesn’t everything we have really belong to God anyway?
  • How will we use it?
  • Do we love money?

Please share your thoughts!

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash

realchristianwomen.blog 

Bible, Christian

Promises That Will Encourage You To Keep Praying for Someone You Love

Is your heart heavy because someone you love rejects Jesus as Savior? Perhaps he(she) calls himself an atheist. Or maybe, he just refuses to search for Truth and instead stands stubbornly in the darkness, clinging to “intellectual” arguments that support his atheistic beliefs.

If you’ve been praying for someone for a long time, don’t give up now. Be encouraged and strengthened by the promises of God.

Galatians 6:9 (NIV) says, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” 

For a long time, I have been praying faithfully everyday that Jay would accept Jesus as Savior. Becoming weary, my prayers have been reduced to “God please help Jay. I don’t know how to pray for him. I don’t even know where he is. You know, Lord.” That is the prayer of someone who is weary in prayer.

After searching God’s Word for encouragement, I was not disappointed. This is what I learned. It is not meant to be a “formula” for prayer, but rather, an encouragement that you are praying according to God’s will and being led by the Holy Spirit. So don’t give up!

Following Paul’s example, simply pray that he will be saved. “Brothers and sisters, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved.” Romans 10:1 NIV

Pray that the Lord will send Christian workers into his life. God uses people to accomplish his will.“What, after all, is Apollos? And what is Paul? Only servants, through whom you came to believe—as the Lord has assigned to each his task. I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow.” 1 Corinthians 3:5-6 NIV

Pray that God will give him spiritual understanding and that the Lord will lead him to repentance. ” … in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.” 2 Timothy 2:25-26 NIV

Pray that God will open his heart.  “The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul” Acts 16:14 NIV

Pray that God will give him spiritual sight and make His light shine in his heart, as He did yours.

“The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God” 2 Corinthians 4:4 NIV

For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ. 2 Corinthians 4:6

Continue to pray with perseverance. God has called you to pray for this person. As you pray, remember to thank God for His love, mercy, kindness, and faithfulness. 

“Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving” Colossians 4:2 NIV

“Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.” Luke 18:1 NIV

Pray with the knowledge that his salvation is God’s will.  

The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.”  2 Peter 3:9 NIV

(Where did we get the idea that God should be on our time table?) 

Therefor pray, “your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” Matthew 6:10 NIV

 Pray with confidence, remembering that our God is a God of mercy, love and faithfulness.

“The heartfelt and persistent prayer of a righteous man (believer) can accomplish much [when put into action and made effective by God—it is dynamic and can have tremendous power].” James 5:16 AMP

 Your prayer for someone’s salvation is most definitely a spiritual battle. Do not listen to the devil’s lies. Of course Satan will try to discourage you and make you give up. Instead, obey God’s Word and keep praying.

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” Ephesians 6:10-12 NIV

From this study, here is what I have learned: God hears my prayers. It’s not that He isn’t answering them or that He doesn’t hear me. (The devil will try to tell us that!)

My “assignment” to pray for Jay has not ended. The battle is not over. In fact, I am in the heat of the battle. I will keep praying.

When I am praying God’s will, I know He is working even though I haven’t seen the final result yet.

“Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hebrews 11:1 NIV

God’s Word encourages me and strengthens my faith! It will do the same for you.

 

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

realchristianwomen.blog 

Bible, Christian

What’s In YOUR Closet?

I spotted a girl in a strange looking outfit. (Kids have some crazy ideas about fashion in middle school.) From across the cafeteria, I tried to see what kind of shirt she was wearing, but couldn’t make out the words. It was something I’d never seen before.

I gazed out at the students as they ate their lunch. They were laughing loudly, talking loudly and having fun. Eventually, I made my way to the other side of the cafeteria. She was a beautiful girl, but my heart sank like lead when I saw what was written on her shirt. It said “Valvoline”.

She wore a wrinkled plaid skirt with the discarded shirt of someone who serviced cars at an instant oil change center. Heart-sick, I looked around at the other girls. Many wore Seaside Beach tee shirts, college team tees, Under Armour, and other designer clothes. The contrast shocked me.

What would it be like to go to Middle School wearing a Valvoline work shirt because that was all you had to wear? Not cool! 

And in middle school – the supreme goal is: be cool!

I thought about my own children, grown now, but never having to do without – well, anything! I thought, “Why have I been so blessed?” God answered my question.

” From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.” Luke 12:48

It made me think. I definitely fall in the “been given much” group. That means God demands a lot from me and He asks much more from me than from others.

I can’t help everyone. I know that. But I can listen and obey the promptings of the Holy Spirit. That is my responsibility as a Christian.

We must all take an account of our lives.  Do our children have to wear cast-aside Valvoline shirts to school?  Probably not.

I don’t know what God might ask me to do next, but when He asks I’ll remember the Valvoline Girl, and I won’t be able to ignore the still small voice asking me to help.

What does God’s Word say about it?

“But whoever has the world’s goods (adequate resources), and sees his brother in need, but has no compassion for him, how does the love of God live in him?” 1 John 3:17 AMP

“Blessed is he who has regard for the weak;” Psalm 41:1

“The generous will themselves be blessed, for they share their food with the poor.” Proverbs 22:9

“Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the Lordand he will reward them for what they have done.” Proverbs 19:17

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.” Philippians 2:3-4 NIV

“… we must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ ” Acts 20:35 NIV

“For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in,  I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink?  When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you?  When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.'” Matthew 25:35-40

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

Photo by Charisse Kenion on Unsplash

realchristianwomen.blog 

 

Christian

How To Change The World

Today my daughter said to me, “God teaches us through lots of different people, sometimes from someone we don’t expect.”  That’s just what I was thinking…

The author of Bitchin in the Kitchen, a popular blog I discovered recently, tells about her “chance meeting” with an American veteran. I was moved to the core. This is a perfect example of how we should love people in the world around us.

Oh, and remember:

“The Lord does not look at the things people look at. People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7

Excerpt from: How To Change The World In The Time It Takes To Read This

By Britchy¹

… Then I met her polar opposite. I was back in town to see an endocrinologist so I bought a few things while I was there to save another trip. I decided I was going to walk up the hill to the Five Guys burger place and treat myself to lunch. It was a lovely day again and you know I love being out in the sun.

There was a homeless guy sat outside an empty shop. He wasn’t begging, just sat there… so on impulse I asked if he was hungry. He was stunned so I asked again if he’d like some lunch. He stammered Yes please so I gestured to Five Guys and said come on!

He said that place is expensive, you can get me McDonalds that’s okay. I’m crying again writing that. That anyone can think they’re not worth a nicer burger..

We went in and I got him a burger and fries and I had the same. I asked if he’d like a milkshake and he just beamed and said yes please! He wasn’t very old, maybe 28 or so. I could just about have been his mum.

Again he was stunned when I wanted him to sit with me to eat. This was breaking my heart in about a million pieces. We were chatting and he was a vet. He came home from a years deployment to find his wife with a new baby, obviously not his so he left and basically ran away from his life.

I told him that was what we called a Grudge Pregnancy in England. He said ‘A what???’ So I told him it was someone else had it in for you!

He burst out laughing, he really found that funny bless him. We kept talking and he mentioned his mum. I asked if he missed his family and he said yes so I handed him my phone and said “Call her”

That was the first thing I said he didn’t question! He called his mum. They were both crying. He’s from Ohio so his mum was going to drive and pick him up and take him home.

I’d gone through two packets of Kleenex by this time!

She was going to take 5-6 hours to get to him so I got him a couple of bottles of soda and some peanuts for while he was waiting. Honestly, I would have stayed but I thought he needed time to think and adjust. He has my phone number and he said he’d call when he got home. (He did)

Before I left him he asked if he could give me a hug and said ‘Thank you for treating me like a normal person’

I can’t even type that again without getting a huge lump in my throat and getting leaky. It cost me less than $20 to change someone’s life. I’m not telling this for praise because this should be normal. It shouldn’t be ‘amazing’ or a ‘wow’ story and none of you know me in real life so it stays anonymous. It’s very special to me and I don’t want to ruin it by telling my family or friends. It’s mine.

It’s not the big things in life that matter, it’s the little things. Those little things can be momentous in their own way. You won’t get rich or famous, you won’t change the world.. or will you?

Changing the world is easy – it happens one person at a time.

********************

“God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him …. We love because he first loved us.” 1 John 4:16 & 19

Thank you, Britchy, for sharing this beautiful story of loving kindness in action. I will never forget it!

With Love, 

AA55AA1F-EA36-49A9-92BE-41FD67348618

This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

realchristianwomen.blog