Sunday, 24 March 2013

These words...

How often do we monitor the words that come out of our mouths? The Bible says that “Death and life are in the power of the tongue and those who love it will eat its fruits.” Proverbs 18:21
Recently I was sitting at a cafe eating breakfast and just enjoying the view. I couldn't help but pick up on some of the conversations going on around me. As I heard little snippets, I realised how much people had to complain about. I didn't consciously follow the conversations, but negative thoughts and complaints were all over the place. It is so sad that negative stories are made so much more sensational than all the good things and beauty around us.
I do realise that sometimes we just need to talk about the things that we are struggling with or dealing with in our lives. We confide in a friend, we encourage each other and we talk about solutions and this is all up building. When our conversations stray from solutions and struggles and only focus on criticism, slander and everything that is wrong in the world, we start sowing bad seeds and soon we will reap a negative attitude.
A negative attitude has never changed the world, needless to say changed the conditions surrounding our own lives. Attitude is everything and when we sow good seeds with our words our focus moves from everything that can be wrong or go wrong to the beautiful things in life and those things that we can be thankful for. A positive attitude cannot always change the issues in our lives, but it can help us deal with them in a better way.
There is so much power in our words. We have the ability to change our friends, family, children and the people around us by speaking life over them and encouraging them to be all that they can be by focussing on their strengths and appreciating them for who they are. When we start seeing them in this light, love will flow freely and relationships will grow stronger. It is too easy to spot the faults and it's a decision to move them aside and focus on the positives. Maybe your words of love are all someone needs to boost their confidence and initiate a change.
There are too many people in this world walking around feeling useless and worthless and most likely they didn't choose to have this attitude, but was told over and over again by people in their lives that they will never amount to anything. Consequently these feelings don't encourage them to take pride in their work or to love people around them, how could they if they don't even love themselves? My heart breaks.
But we have the words of life, we can make a difference, because when we speak, we speak life and Jesus flows through us. You can be the change that someone needs. Let's instead of criticise, speak life and encourage with love and change the conditions around us by our words. Let's lift our gaze to heaven and get a perspective of love and tame the tongue. Let's put on positivity and walk confidently in the abundance of love which Jesus gave to us. Let’s be the difference that we want to see in the world.
Photo credit: favim

Thursday, 21 March 2013

No judgement

When we realise that God is not "out to get" us and that He does not condemn us, then our view of God and the world will change so dramatically. God is more interested in loving people than pointing out their flaws and sins. We all have flaws and sins, but God is not panicking about them. Jesus has already died for all of our sins and any flaw that you have, God can overcome with the power of His Spirit that is in you.
When our revelation of God's love for us starts to grow, our vision will grow as well. We will start to see people through God's eyes and with a heavenly perspective instead of with our own judgmental eyes.
"Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, "Let me take the speck out of your eye," when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye.
Matthew 7:1-5
It is a process and the journey starts with us. As we grow closer to Jesus our definition of love will change and our perspective will change. We will see ourselves through the eyes of God, we will see who He made us to be, perfect and in His likeness. He will reveal to us our strengths, abilities and gifts and shower us with His love. This will make us less critical of ourselves and will enable us to love ourselves more as His love covers every hurt, failure and wound and empowers us with confidence. As we learn more and more who we truly are, we become more comfortable in our own skin and around other people.
Naturally this will also flow out into the way that we view the people around us. We will stop seeing people as they stand in front of us and start seeing people for who God has made them to be. We get a download from heaven for each person and we see them through God's eyes and with His heart. This ability is absolutely amazing and enables us to unconditionally love others, to speak life over them and to encourage them to be who God made them to be.
There is so much beauty in the world and God has enabled us to love people and to help them shine. Don't miss out on this amazing opportunity to inspire others and to see the potential that God has placed in each one of them unfold!
Photo credit: tumblr

Monday, 18 March 2013

No condemnation

"There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus." Romans 8:1
Even though the Bible clearly says that there are now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, we still so often feel condemned or guilty. Maybe you do something that goes against what you learnt as a child or maybe it's judgemental words from a friend or family member? The point is that the devil will use any opportunity to make us feel guilty, because guilt makes us feel unloved and unworthy and ultimately makes us feel like God cannot use us or doesn't approve of us. These are all complete lies!
Jesus has already died for everything which we can ever possibly do wrong and not accepting His sacrifice and feeling guilty about it is a slap in the face. Facing the cross was not easy for Jesus, it was a massive sacrifice on His part and it was all for us, to allow us to walk in freedom and relationship with God. We should never let our communication or relationship with God be broken or become 'disconnected', because we feel guilty or condemned. God does not condemn. If you have strayed off track or if you are busy hurting yourself He will tell you and the Spirit will convict you. You will immediately know and He will at the same time give you the grace to deal with it. He always wants us to run into His arms and not away from Him. When we do something wrong we should run to Jesus, not hide from Him. There is nothing that we need to be ashamed about, He knows it all and He loves us despite our shortcomings and sins. His mercy is great and His grace knows no bounds.
The point of guilt and condemnation is to push us away from God and make us feel disconnected from Him. This is definitely not from God and red flags should pop up in your heart when you have these feelings. God knows that we are not perfect, but He loves us regardless and when He looks at us, He sees us through Jesus and that makes us look perfect. He is far more interested in what He can do in you, so that He can work through you, but the devil tries to convince us that God continually looks at our sins and tries to make us feel useless and worthless.
Do not fall into the devil's trap, but run in the freedom which we have in Christ. His love for you is unimaginable and He desires so much to spend time with you. He is the good Father and we are always welcome in His arms.
"Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom." 2 Corinthians 3:17
"For the death He died He died to sin, once for all, but the life He lives He lives to God. So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to God in Christ Jesus." Romans 6:10 - 11
Photo credit: weheartit

Monday, 11 March 2013

Feed on His faithfulness

I’m not the type of person to look back, I like keeping my gaze ahead as opposed to dwelling on the past. What’s done is done and there’s no point getting hung up on it, but I do believe that sometimes looking back to the good parts is important. God is 100% in control of our lives and He weaves our lives together beautifully. We need to look back to see His golden thread running through our days, months and years. He knows the plans that He has for us and when we come to Him with a willing heart, He makes them happen and makes our paths straight.
I love this verse Psalm 37:3: “Trust in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness.” My Bible has a little note at the verse and an explanation at the bottom which I love the most. “Befriend faithfulness” can also be translated as “feed on His faithfulness”. When we look back, we see all the wonderful things which He has done and we see His golden thread weaving together all things for good. We see His faithfulness in our lives and we can remind ourselves of who He is and how He is in control. We can then feed on this faithfulness of His and feed our spirits and our faith. By reminding (feeding) ourselves of His faithfulness, we build ourselves up and increase our faith in the situations that we are currently facing.
“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28
We tend to use this scripture as comfort when people are facing difficult situations, which is appropriate, but this scripture is not limited to difficult situations, it also includes favourable situations. It is not that He only works the difficult things together for our good, but ALL things. Thus in every part of our lives and in every season, He is weaving our lives together, all for our good (and growth) and for His glory. Ultimately we do not just want to live for ourselves, but also to serve His purpose for our lives and serve the people around us in the ways which He intended for us.
Take some time today to look back and spot the golden thread weaving through your past. He took His time and put you on a journey to bring you to this place and for a time such as this. Be encouraged, strengthened, thankful and secure, because He KNOWS the plans He has for you, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. (Jeremiah 29:11)
Photo credit: Blog 

Thursday, 7 March 2013

An overflow of love!

Today I just want to share about how amazing God is! I just feel such an overflow in my heart as I feel Him loving me and see Him loving people around me. I have noticed how it’s the people who don’t realise that He loves them so deeply, the people who feel disconnected from Him or the people that are so flustered in life that He just surprises with His love. It’s so amazing. He is so good and there is no requirement to receive His love. You might think this is ridiculous, but 8 weeks ago I stuck a note on my door saying God loves me and I’ve made a point to think about it more and more during the day. I truly believe that our revelation of His love for us cannot be too big! He loves us more than we can ever imagine!
The problem comes in that it’s often so hard for us to believe it, even a little bit. The lies in our minds also don’t help as they constantly remind us of how we fall short and try to convince us that we are doing something wrong. The truth is that we really do fall short. “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” Romans 3:23 BUT “God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
So yes, we do fall short as we all have sinned in our lives, but because of Christ’s love for us that sin cannot hold us back from God, it cannot separate us from God’s love for us and it cannot be used as an excuse to not receive God’s love. Nothing we can do can stop His love. Sin is powerless. His love is available to us, we just need to believe it. I have started making a habit of quieting the voices in my head. When they come against His love and try to make me feel guilty and condemned, I actually tell them to shut up! And I can honestly say that the less I listen to them, the quieter they have become.
When we believe in His love, it empowers us, it gives us confidence, because it teaches us who we are and that the God of the universe and our best friend is standing right beside us.
I doesn’t matter what you are going through in your life, God loves you and He is with you. Nothing you can do can scare Him away! He is the God of compassion and He doesn’t want anyone to be excluded, not one single person. Jesus didn’t die for some, He died for all and as He showed this love to us, so we should be the conduit of His love to the world. You will be amazed how He will start loving people through you if you allow Him to.
Maybe you feel like your rivers of living water have dried up? Do not worry or be anxious He has more than enough! Everything that you need is in Him. Sit with Him today and fill up until you overflow with His love.
We love because He first loved us.” 1 John 4:19

Picture credit: Daylightstarlight