I Will Let Your Spirit Guide Me


Dear Father, Thank You for this day! That Your Holy Spirit Guides me, and that I can go in Your love, joy, and strength. Thank You for peace and rest. The peace You give me is not like the peace of this world. Your rest is a calm assurance that You are for me and not against me. You never give me more than I can handle if I lean on Your strong arm, so whatever comes my way today, I will confidently stand on Your word and seek Your will in each situation. You are the one who will complete what You have begun in me. I will listen and obey, and if I need wisdom, I will ask You for it. I choose this day to live from Heaven and not from this earth cursed system. I will not fear anything that bombards my natural senses, but will instead rely and trust my spiritual eyes and ears. I will rely wholly on the Holy Spirit who speaks to me in many ways. Today will be a prosperous day, for me and for Your Kingdom.

Sink or Swim?


My daughter has a friend and that woman has three beautiful children. When her oldest boy was still a toddler they came to stay with my daughter. At naptime little Liam did not want to take a nap. His patient father was trying to get the little guy down while the girls visited. Here is the conversation that was related back to me after this incident.

Dad: “Would you like to take a nap on the couch or on the bed?”
Liam: “Outside.”
Dad: “We will go outside later; right now that is not an option. Would you like to take a nap in the bed or on the couch?”
Liam: “I choose…neither.” (Yep, he used those exact words.)

Now to the consternation of his Daddy, everyone else in the house thought this was hilarious. I thought it was very cute, especially such a little guy who uses such grown up terms. He is rather a smart boy.

What does that have to do with sinking or swimming?

At our Praise and Prayer service last night, God showed me a picture of a great ocean with people everywhere. There was a storm and the waves were rolling. Some of those people were treading water, barely keeping their chins up, and sometimes bobbing under for a few scary moments. Others had simply given up the fight and were allowing themselves to sink to the peaceful bottom, far away from the storm. Those didn’t make it.

I asked God what it meant and He showed me that the storm tossed waters represented this world we live in, one storm after another. The people represented both the lost and the saved. Those that were swimming were still trying to keep themselves alive. Those that were sinking had given up the fight and surrendered to this world. I thought of the obvious question, would I sink or swim. Immediately I thought, “swim.” But God said, “I have not called you to sink or to swim! I have called you to be a life preserver.” Like Liam, God wanted me to say “neither.” Ok, so Liam may have been a cute rebellious toddler, but our choice to neither sink nor swim doesn’t come from rebellion, but out of trust.

Of course God in His mercy showed it to me this way. Those who are treading water, waiting for someone to rescue them didn’t realize they had already been saved. There ought not to have been any Christians in that predicament as we should be quite aware of the fact that we have been saved already! The sinkers represented those saved and unsaved who just plain grew weary of the fight. Those who were saved had allowed the cares of this world to overtake them. (Our Senior Pastor, after I gave this word to the congregation, added to this by saying that those treading water also represented those who were trying to do it all in their own strength. Instead of the Grace of God, they were trying to do make it on their own merit and labor.)

Jesus walked on the water, during a storm. Peter had the faith to step out of the boat and as long as he kept his eyes on Jesus, he too walked on the water. That is what God has called us to do. Not bob around like a floating device, waiting for someone to grab a hold of us, but to live above the storm tossed waves, to walk on the water and pull them up and out of the storms. How do we do that? First of all we can’t choose sinking or swimming. We have to renew ourselves in the word, press into the loving arms of the Father, and allow Him to change us and use us. We don’t have to be perfect for him to use us; we just have to be willing. However, we can’t save those drowning if we are clinging to them in the water.

Those that are drowning have no regard for life, but their own. In great panic they tend to try to get themselves up out of the waves by crawling up and over their would be saviors. Ask anyone who has gone through lifeguard training. Sometimes they have to literally knock someone out to get them both to safety. So it is a must that we realize that we are not drowning. Jesus has already pulled called us to the surface, set us on our feet, and taught us how to say “peace” to the storms. Once we have accepted that, put our trust in Him, we stop trying to do it in our strength, by our work. It’s a different kind of surrender. Not the “I’ll just sink down where it is cold and calm, and let the fighting be over,” but it is a “I can’t do it on my own, I need Him.”

Then we can show others the way. Those who don’t know Him, need to be introduced. Those who do, but are still living under their own works, need to be shown how to be led by the Holy Spirit, how to enter into the rest of God, how to give up in a good way.

Romans 8:12-17 (The Message Bible), “So don’t you see that we don’t owe this old do-it-yourself life one red cent. There’s nothing in it for us, nothing at all. The best thing to do is give it a decent burial and get on with your new life. God’s Spirit beckons. There are things to do and places to go! This resurrection life you received from God is not a timid, grave-tending life. It’s adventurously expectant, greeting God with a childlike “What’s next, Papa?” God’s Spirit touches our spirits and confirms who we really are. We know who he is, and we know who we are: Father and children. And we know we are going to get what’s coming to us—an unbelievable inheritance! We go through exactly what Christ goes through. If we go through the hard times with him, then we’re certainly going to go through the good times with him!”

So what will it be? Sink or swim?

I hope you, like little Liam, chose neither.

Drama Queen or Noble King?


We all know a few Drama Queens. You know the ones who live soap opera lives. They love drama and the latest gossip. They are busybodies, they think they have to know and try to fix everyone else’s problems, when their own seem too huge to even attempt to fix. Anything that happens in their lives is a BIG DEAL! Mountains are made out of molehills. A bad report becomes headline news (everyone has to know.) Most of the time we grow out of that stage around the age of sixteen, but for some, it becomes a way of life.

Those kind of people drain me. How about you? It feels like they sap the strength right out of you. Suck you dry. They are so needy.

At Church they are always in the prayer line, always asking for prayer, wanting someone to “stand in the gap” for them. All good things, but they never receive. Or if they do, they just move onto the next big deal. What is the problem?

They don’t trust God. Or, I may even venture to say, they don’t know God. Sure they may know who He is, they may even believe He is real and that He sent Jesus to die for them, but they don’t really know Him. How do I know that?

I’ve had my drama queen moments.

Always, those times have been when I looked at the circumstances, believed the bad doctors report, or the balance in my checkbook, more than I looked at Him, or believed His word. Sometimes we believe, we know Him in an intimate way, but we still go into panic mode. Most often, in my own life it is because I haven’t been listening to Him, or I listened but didn’t do what He said.

Years ago when I was having heart issues, and had some equipment malfunction while on the operating table, fully awake, I lived a few months of the Drama Queen life. From the beginning, God was trying to tell me that He had it all under control, that I had already been healed, and to act like it, declare it. However, I chose to listen to the doctors and some well-meaning people and things went from bad to worse. It took me finally listening, and obeying Him before I saw the issue totally healed. He healed me before the foundation of the world, way before He ever took those stripes, but it took months for it to manifest due to my lack of obedience. Thankfully, a good Christian friend told me that God said, “I’ve got your back. It’s all taken care of.” The exact same thing He had been trying to tell me for months. Some of the worst days in my entire life ended up being a stepping stone for my faith to grow. I know I can trust Him! He proved it, again.

Proverbs 3:5-8 (NIV), “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the Lord and shun evil. This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.”

That is a word to stand on!

Now, before I finish up today, I don’t want to just say “don’t be a Drama Queen,” I want to also encourage you to be who God created you to be. A Noble King.

Revelations 5:10 (Aramaic Bible In Plain English), “And you have made them a Kingdom, Priests and Kings to our God, and they shall reign over The Earth.”

He has made us kings! I didn’t say it, He did.

When you think of a good king, David always seems to come to mind. He was intimate with God. He refused to take any action against his enemy Saul, recognizing that King Saul was anointed by God. When he sinned, he repented. One scripture stands out to me in the life of King David that helps prove the nobleness of his character.

II Samuel 9:1-7 (NIV), Then David said, “Is there yet anyone left of the house of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan’s sake?” Now there was a servant of the house of Saul whose name was Ziba, and they called him to David; and the king said to him, “Are you Ziba?” And he said, “I am your servant.” The king said, “Is there not yet anyone of the house of Saul to whom I may show the kindness of God?” And Ziba said to the king, “There is still a son of Jonathan who is crippled in both feet.” So the king said to him, “Where is he?” And Ziba said to the king, “Behold, he is in the house of Machir the son of Ammiel in Lo-debar.” Then King David sent and brought him from the house of Machir the son of Ammiel, from Lo-debar. Mephibosheth, the son of Jonathan the son of Saul, came to David and fell on his face and prostrated himself. And David said, “Mephibosheth.” And he said, “Here is your servant!” David said to him, “Do not fear, for I will surely show kindness to you for the sake of your father Jonathan, and will restore to you all the land of your grandfather Saul; and you shall eat at my table regularly.”

Saul and his sons are dead. David is king. He is subduing his enemies with the Lord’s leading. He has built himself a fine home out of the cedars of Lebanon. All is good for David, yet there is one thing is still on his heart. He remembers the good things about King Saul. He recalls the friendship he had with Jonathan, so he wants to show some kindness to anyone who is left. David accepts this cripples man into his home and restores all of his grandfathers land to him. He thought of others. He wanted to bless, to give, and wasn’t thinking of how he could get.

That is nobility.

Yes, he was king and had more than he needed. But, you must remember, he started as shepherd boy. In fact, that’s when God anointed him as king.

Drama Queens live in the temporal, Noble Kings live in eternity.

It’s a choice really.
How do you choose to see your life?
How do you choose to see God?
Who do you want to be?
A Drama Queen or a Noble King?

Psalm 107


We need God. Without Him we are a mess. Even with Him we can go down that slippery slope from time to time. When that happens, all we need to do is call out to Him. He is faithful to save. Sometimes we think we have tried His patience and we listen to the lies of the enemy. Satan tries to tell us that God won’t be there for us. That God is angry with us. One of the most common lies is that we got ourselves into the mess, what makes us think God will get us out?

God’s chosen people were messed up. They cried out to Him and He saved them. Then, surprise, surprise, they mess up again (and again, and again-get the picture?). Every time He patiently comes through for them. He’s a parent. Isn’t that what we do with our little ones? We set boundaries, they go past them, we administer a consequence, tell them we forgive them and love them, and they do it again the next day. We don’t give up, because we love them and have great expectations for their future. One of those expectations is that they will learn from their mistakes. That those times where they lose control, or act in rebellion will come fewer and farther between.

God has those same expectations for us!

Let’s take a look at Psalm 107. These verses clearly show our Father’s patience and love towards us.

Psalm 107:1-42 (AMP), “O give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever! Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, whom He has delivered from the hand of the adversary, And gathered them out of the lands, from the east and from the west, from the north and from the [Red] Sea in the south. Some wandered in the wilderness in a solitary desert track; they found no city for habitation. Hungry and thirsty, they fainted; their lives were near to being extinguished. Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and He delivered them out of their distresses. He led them forth by the straight and right way, that they might go to a city where they could establish their homes. Oh, that men would praise [and confess to] the Lord for His goodness and loving-kindness and His wonderful works to the children of men! For He satisfies the longing soul and fills the hungry soul with good. Some sat in darkness and in the shadow of death, being bound in affliction and in irons, Because they had rebelled against the words of God and spurned the counsel of the Most High. Therefore He bowed down their hearts with hard labor; they stumbled and fell down, and there was none to help. Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and He saved them out of their distresses. He brought them out of darkness and the shadow of death and broke apart the bonds that held them. Oh, that men would praise [and confess to] the Lord for His goodness and loving-kindness and His wonderful works to the children of men! For He has broken the gates of bronze and cut the bars of iron apart. Some are fools [made ill] because of the way of their transgressions and are afflicted because of their iniquities. They loathe every kind of food, and they draw near to the gates of death. Then they cry to the Lord in their trouble, and He delivers them out of their distresses. He sends forth His word and heals them and rescues them from the pit and destruction. Oh, that men would praise [and confess to] the Lord for His goodness and loving-kindness and His wonderful works to the children of men! And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving and rehearse His deeds with shouts of joy and singing! Some go down to the sea and travel over it in ships to do business in great waters; These see the works of the Lord and His wonders in the deep. For He commands and raises up the stormy wind, which lifts up the waves of the sea. [Those aboard] mount up to the heavens, they go down again to the deeps; their courage melts away because of their plight. They reel to and fro and stagger like a drunken man and are at their wits’ end [all their wisdom has come to nothing]. Then they cry to the Lord in their trouble, and He brings them out of their distresses. He hushes the storm to a calm and to a gentle whisper, so that the waves of the sea are still. Then the men are glad because of the calm, and He brings them to their desired haven. Oh, that men would praise [and confess to] the Lord for His goodness and loving-kindness and His wonderful works to the children of men! Let them exalt Him also in the congregation of the people and praise Him in the company of the elders. He turns rivers into a wilderness, water springs into a thirsty ground, A fruitful land into a barren, salt waste, because of the wickedness of those who dwell in it. He turns a wilderness into a pool of water and a dry ground into water springs; And there He makes the hungry to dwell, that they may prepare a city for habitation, And sow fields, and plant vineyards which yield fruits of increase. He blesses them also, so that they are multiplied greatly, and allows not their cattle to decrease. When they are diminished and bowed down through oppression, trouble, and sorrow, He pours contempt upon princes and causes them to wander in waste places where there is no road. Yet He raises the poor and needy from affliction and makes their families like a flock. The upright shall see it and be glad, but all iniquity shall shut its mouth.”

Does any of that sound familiar? Some wandered around alone and confused, hungry and thirsty. Some sat in darkness and in the shadow of death, because of their own rebellion. Others are fools and were made sick due to their own stupidity and bad choices. There are those that are on that roller coaster ride from Hell, ups and downs and at their witts end. Then there are the ones who are burdened with heavy oppression, trouble, and sorrow. Does it say that God leaves them there in their mess? No. He saves, delivers, and heals. He makes those desert places like garden. He calms those storms and allows us to be stable and at peace. God brings us out of darkness into the light of His Son. “Oh, that men would praise the Lord for His goodness and loving-kindness and His wonderful works.”

The last verse in Psalm 107 says, “Whoso is wise [if there be any truly wise] will observe and heed these things; and they will diligently consider the mercy and loving-kindness of the Lord.”

I want to be wise, don’t you?

He Cares


Jehovah God, Our Heavenly Father, is not some cold, uncaring deity who is distant and aloof.
My God cares about me. He cares about you. He cares about every living thing, but He cares most about people.
How do I know that?

He collects my tears in a bottle. (Psalms 56:8)
He knows when a sparrow falls, tells me I am more important than a bird, and counts the number of hairs on my head. (Matthew 29:29:30)
He sings and rejoices over me. (Zephaniah 3:17)
He answers me when I call. (Psalm 120:1)

Here are a few other scriptures that need to be read in full:
Psalms 140:12 (AMP), “I know and rest in confidence upon it that the Lord will maintain the cause of the afflicted, and will secure justice for the poor and needy [of His believing children].”

Psalms 103:6-8 (NIV),”The Lord works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed. He made known his ways to Moses, his deeds to the people of Israel: The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.”

Jesus said that He came to show us the Father. Jesus was a man filled with compassion. He wept when His friend Lazarus died, even knowing that he would be raised. The pain of Lazarus’ sisters brought tears to His eyes. He wept over Jerusalem. He had compassion on the multitudes and made sure that they had food, creating a miracle feast out of a few scraps of food.

The best proof of God’s care for us is the fact that He made a way to redeem us from our sins. He sent His only son, who offered up Himself, to die for us. He paid our penalty. One we could never repay. Then He rose again and ascended to Heaven so that the Father could send us His Holy Spirit. He refused to leave us comfortless. Why would we need any further proof than that?

Feeling like no one cares?
He does. More than you could ever comprehend.

Encourage Yourself


Ever had one of those spells where everything seems to be against you? Things just can’t seem to go right? God seems far way, your flesh is strong and your spirit is weak? Maybe you feel like every demon in hell is on your case?

We all have. Thankfully some only last hours. Regretfully, we can get stuck there if we don’t do something about it. We can’t control every circumstance in our lives, but we can control how we think and act. We can control what comes out of our mouth and what goes into our hearts.

David went through some stuff. Read the Psalms or I and II Samuel. What did David do when things looked bad? He gave God the praise and recognition He deserved. He chose not to be cast down.
Psalm 42:5 (NIV), “Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.”

He also encouraged himself in the Lord. Notice he didn’t wait around for someone else to do this. Encouragement from others is so beneficial. It can change a bad day into a good one. However, we have to be able to remind ourselves of where our refuge is. Of who our Salvation comes from.

Psalm 27:1-4 (NIV), “Of David. The LORD is my light and my salvation– whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life– of whom shall I be afraid? When the wicked advance against me to devour me, it is my enemies and my foes who will stumble and fall. Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then I will be confident. One thing I ask from the LORD, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.”

David remembered that the Lord was his light and his salvation. God had proven himself with the lion, the bear, and with Goliath. Saul, the King of Israel, may be trying to kill him, but he was going to trust in the Lord. How many times do we make “mountains out of molehills?” David said even if an army arrived, even if war was at his doorstep, he would be confident in God.

Verses 5-14 (AMP) read, “For in the day of trouble He will hide me in His shelter; in the secret place of His tent will He hide me; He will set me high upon a rock. And now shall my head be lifted up above my enemies round about me; in His tent I will offer sacrifices and shouting of joy; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord. Hear, O Lord, when I cry aloud; have mercy and be gracious to me and answer me! You have said, Seek My face [inquire for and require My presence as your vital need]. My heart says to You, Your face (Your presence), Lord, will I seek, inquire for, and require [of necessity and on the authority of Your Word]. Hide not Your face from me; turn not Your servant away in anger, You Who have been my help! Cast me not off, neither forsake me, O God of my salvation! Although my father and my mother have forsaken me, yet the Lord will take me up [adopt me as His child]. Teach me Your way, O Lord, and lead me in a plain and even path because of my enemies [those who lie in wait for me]. Give me not up to the will of my adversaries, for false witnesses have risen up against me; they breathe out cruelty and violence. [What, what would have become of me] had I not believed that I would see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living! Wait and hope for and expect the Lord; be brave and of good courage and let your heart be stout and enduring. Yes, wait for and hope for and expect the Lord.”
Be encouraged!

For additional reading: Psalms 31, 34, 54, 91

Lover of My Soul
Lover of my soul,
what mortal man can compare to thee?
Thou who has shed
thy life’s blood for me.
Leave not my side,
nor hide thy face from me.
Stay, evermore,
by my side for eternity.
Take this corruptible flesh,
and clothe me in immortality.
Oh, lover of my soul,
What mortal man can compare to thee?

Copy write: Jodi Woody

By Many Or By Few


I Samuel 14:6 (NIV), “Jonathan said to his young armor-bearer, “Come, let’s go over to the outpost of those uncircumcised men. Perhaps the LORD will act in our behalf. Nothing can hinder the LORD from saving, whether by many or by few.”

I Samuel 14:20-23 (NIV), “Then Saul and all the people who were with him rallied and came to the battle; and behold, every man’s sword was against his fellow, and there was very great confusion. Now the Hebrews who were with the Philistines previously, who went up with them all around in the camp, even they also turned to be with the Israelites who were with Saul and Jonathan. When all the men of Israel who had hidden themselves in the hill country of Ephraim heard that the Philistines had fled, even they also pursued them closely in the battle. So the LORD delivered Israel that day, and the battle spread beyond Beth-aven.”

It doesn’t take a great army to destroy the enemy. It does take a great God and a willing heart.
Jonathan, King Saul’s son, took it into his heart to allow God to use him, and when he told his armor bearer, the young man was willing to follow. When they did, God came through in a miraculous way. There was so much confusion in the enemy camp, that even to this day, the word “Michmash” still means utter confusion and chaos. By the time Saul showed up God had already thrown the enemy into disarray.

What happens when a few willing souls step out in faith? Others follow. They come out of the enemy’s camp and fight on the side of good. They come out of hiding, out of the dark woods. They lift their heads up out of despair and have hope. They join the battle.

Never despise small beginnings. God uses the small things and the foolish things. He uses us! That’s how He gets the glory. Nobody in their right mind would ever think that we could do it. It has to be God. It doesn’t matter what those around us are doing. Saul was a mess. He was in direct disobedience with God. He spoke curses over his troops, forbidding them even to eat. Yet, Jonathan stood up for what was right and just. No wonder he later backed David, and the two young men became fast friends. Jonathan knew in his heart that God would save by many or by few.

Never feel alone! So maybe you don’t have an armor bearer, then be one for someone else. Say to that man or woman of God, “do what seems right to you, I am with you.” Follow those who follow Christ. Be a Jonathan, or be an armor bearer. We may not know that armor bearers name, but he has been remembered all of these years. God made sure he would be written into the scriptures for our example.

We have work to do, and a battle to fight. The victory is ours, the outcome is sure. The joy of the Lord is our strength. Psalm 3:3 (NAS), But You, O LORD, are a shield about me, My glory, and the One who lifts my head. Our battle cry is “LOVE.”
Will you join us?

Jesus, You are my Mighty Warrior King. You go before me and make a way where there is no way. You set the enemy in confusion on my behalf, yet You give Your soldiers perfect peace!