HE LOVES ME!

Take time to reflect on the love of God as you enjoy this music.

HAPPY HOLY WEEK!

For this song and more stirring, inspirational music visit  http://www.DannyHuntMusic.com

I hope you visit http://www.Yoursoulfirst.com often. Whenever you find yourself in need of encouragement or Christian fellowship think of us. And please share it with your friends and family. You will be helping us share the gospel’s good news and strengthen fellow believers.

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HOW TO RUN YOUR RACE WITH JOY!

FEET OF RUNNER NO WATER MARK

When I was younger, I enjoyed sprinting in races and won them with ease. I found the short burst of energy exhilarating. Grueling marathon distances are an entirely different dynamic. Because of the sheer duration there are many more opportunities to become injured, stumble, fall, lose focus, get weary and quit .

Our Christian journey is compared to a marathon race with good reason. Unless one passes on shortly after being born again, we will encounter many obstacles to our walk and faith. It is imperative that we prepare to endure, come what may, as we “press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus”.

Some obstacles will be internal others external. All are potentially, detrimental, so the Lord instructs us to “take heed to yourselves”. It means to be aware of our thoughts and actions in light of God’s word and will. Also, be certain to adjust ourselves accordingly. Reference the good vs evil servant, the five foolish virgins or seeds sown on stony or thorny ground, ( Matthew 24:42-51; Matthew 25:1-13; Mark 4:14-20) . Jesus say’s that, “He that endures to the end, the same shall be saved”, (Matthew 24:13).

The word of God, the Holy Spirit, fellowship with sincere believers and joy equip us to endure. “The joy of the Lord is your strength”! Don’t let the devil steal your joy. The tempter came after the people and things that brought Job pleasure in an attempt to get Job to lay down his faith and abandon worship.

Your faith is ultimately what he wants to destroy through trials small and large. Because, “without faith it is impossible to please Him”. Be aware that he will use whatever or whoever he can to play games with your mind. Job was shaken, but his faith endured.

AN OBSTACLE TO JOYFULNESS

Our Christian walk, though encumbered by our mortal bodies with it’s appetites, would be an easier undertaking if not for difficult interactions we encounter with some fellow human beings. Co-workers, neighbors, family, even bothers and sister in Christ can try our very souls. Jesus himself endured disciples that faltered, neighbors and family that rejected His purpose and Judas who betrayed Him.

Your God is acutely aware of every plot, scheme, ambush and evil intent planned and designed to jade you. These attacks may come directly to play on your mind, emotions, or flesh as they did Christ in the wilderness; or through the enemies you will face in life. Be still…….. let Jesus, through the Holy Spirit strengthen your inner man so that you may keep the faith and finish your race.

WHAT TO DO

Wait on the Lord and be of good courage. He will make the darkness light before you. Do not confuse the Lords seeming inactivity for Him being unaware or unconcerned with what causes you pain. Perhaps he is giving your detractors space to change their ways, as He thankfully gives us all. Never equate getting by, with getting away. Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap, (Galatians 6:7).

Because of His great love for humanity, the Lord wants to spare your enemies of harsh chastisement; which is why He commissions us to pray for them where ever they may be found. “Seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you”, (2 Thessalonians 1:6). Your prayers, as a minister of reconciliation, maybe the very thing that turns them around and extends God’s mercy. And there is a blessing in it for you. God blessed Job doubly when he prayed for his companions, who added to his misery.

And who is your enemy? Anyone who wishes you harm in their heart and works to that end. Anyone whose actions diminish, malign, subjugate, dishearten or humiliate you in any way. They have set themselves against you as an enemy; an obstacle to be overcome. Particularly if their actions are with malice of forethought or veiled contempt. You may feel all alone, but the Lord takes it quite personally. “Saul, Saul why persecuteth thou me”.

So how can you run your race with joy when life is full of irritants and obstacles? Well, by remembering and utilizing the mighty spiritual weapons in our God given arsenal. Some of which are continual prayer, fasting, praise, worship, singing, waiting on the Lord, and confessing the Word of God. Engaging in these, purposefully, will restore your peace and strength to continue your Christian journey with joy, to the glory of God.

IN SUMMARY

Stand still and see the salvation of the Lord. He is your defense. He delivered Joseph of his brothers jealousy, David of Saul’s treachery, Daniel and his companions from the pride of Nebuchadnezzar and Darius. By keeping your faith and joy your end will be far better than your beginning. He will deliver you from, in or as you move through life’s difficulties! And He promises you eternal rewards that are beyond our current comprehension.

He will do any combination of three things as you stand; strengthen your heart, change their heart or rectify the wrongs in His divine way and time. Either way you win. “In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer He has overcome the world”. “Rejoice in the Lord always and again I say rejoice”(Philippians 4:4-8).

Confess for yourself today; He makes me to lie down in green pasture. He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my souls. Through Jesus (Yeshua) I will run through troops and leap over walls! A thousand shall fall at my side and ten thousand at my right hand. The Lord is my helper. You are worthy Oh Lord, to receive glory and honor at all times, Amen. Believe it!

By Z Hunt

Photo of Runners Feet courtesy of http://www.FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Copyright © 2015

For stirring, inspirational music visit  http://www.DannyHuntMusic.com

Also, please visit my fun and informative health and beauty blog at http://www.HowToLookAndFeelLikeYourDaughter.com

I hope you visit http://www.Yoursoulfirst.com often. Whenever you find yourself in need of encouragement or Christian fellowship think of us. And please share it with your friends and family. You will be helping us share the gospel’s good news and strengthen fellow believers.

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GOOD AND SCARY

God Is Awesome

GOD IS AWESOME

When I was a little girl my father always seemed to know what I was thinking. He would often say, “You can’t fool me. I know you better than you know yourself”. I found that statement quite puzzling. I would say to my self, “How could you possibly know me better than I know myself”.

When I became a parent I found myself saying the same thing to my kids. I came to understand exactly what my dad meant. Because he loved me and had observed me and my propensities since my first breath, he could with great accuracy often (not always) tell what I was thinking or doing and why.

The good and comforting thing concerning the omniscience (all-knowing) of God is that He always knows and understands with complete objectivity our every thought and the motivations of our hearts far better than we ever could. When we are misunderstood by others it soothes us to know that He understands us as no one else possibly can.

And the scary/awesome thing  concerning the omniscience of God is that He always knows and understands with complete objectivity our every thought and the motivations of our hearts far better than we ever could. He can not be fooled by our excuses, reasoning’s or rationalizations when our thoughts and actions are less than stellar.

God is omnipresent (everywhere at all times in time and space) and in Him we all “live and move and have our being” (Acts 7-17:28). Literally, as we exist and move through space, we constantly pass through the very essence of God. His presence is inescapable. Consider the fact that there is no motive, no thought, no action that can be withheld from Him. The dark is like midday to Him.

God says of man “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings” (Jeremiah 17:9, 10). And this He will do. So it is in our best interest to be as honest and sincere with ourselves as possible, which is not always easy.

The Apostle Paul encapsulates this thought in his writings to the Galatians chapter 6:7 when he exhorts, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap”. This truth is often referred to as “Karma”, “Just deserts” and “What goes around comes around”.

The next time you say to yourself “The Lord knows my heart”, dig deep and examine your thoughts and actions as sincerely as possible, asking the Lord for His help. It is better to purify our own hearts with His guidance than to leave the house cleaning to Him, which often comes with trials and troubles.  Consider in this regard Cain, King Saul, David, King Uzziah and others.

That is not to say that all troubles are the direct result of some dastardly personal deed such as hate, lust, greed, vengeance, selfish ambition, etc. They are not. “Man that is born of a woman is of few days and full of trouble” (Job 14:1). But if it is, in your commune with God, He will reveal it. Humbly ask for forgiveness and mercy as you change your ways. Truer words were never spoken, “The Lord knows my heart”. Believe it!

Some people can be fooled all the time

All people can be fooled some time

We fool ourselves at times

We NEVER fool God

Motives matter

Dig deep

By Z Hunt

Copyright © 2014

For stirring, inspirational music visit  http://www.DannyHuntMusic.com

Also, please visit my fun and informative health and beauty blog at http://www.HowToLookAndFeelLikeYourDaughter.com

I hope you visit http://www.Yoursoulfirst.com often. Whenever you find yourself in need of encouragement or Christian fellowship think of us. And please share it with your friends and family. You will be helping us share the gospel’s good news and strengthen fellow believers.

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DOES GOD SEE, KNOW, CARE?

Sterling butterfly cross NECKLACE     I was having an extremely difficult day. It was one of “those” days – just one disappointment after the other. I temporarily felt sad and abandoned by God and the whole of humanity . If I could have stopped the world from spinning and got off, I would have. I’m sure you’ve had days like that also, from time to time. I wanted to cry and spit fire all at the same time. I lifted a silent prayer to the Lord instead.

Later, at about three o’clock in the afternoon my husband and I were in Sears shopping. He had just gone to the rest room when a petite, elderly lady with milky white, smooth, wrinkle free skin (very rare) approached me and said, “I want to give you something, if you will have it”. I cautiously and a bit pessimistically said, “Ooookayyy”.

She explained to me that a relative had given her a sterling silver necklace which she had waited too long to return. She showed me the necklace, still in it’s bronze box with the original tag still on it, accompanied by the receipt.

The item was quite lovely and I asked her if she was sure she wanted to part with it. She informed me that she was 80 years old (that’s right 80 with no wrinkles)  and didn’t want it to remain unused in her possession. She pointed to a small, silver, diamond encrusted cross around her neck, which she said she never took off day or night and it was the only necklace she wears. She then said that she wanted to give the necklace in the box to someone and “I chose you”.

Well I was floored! Upon examining the piece I noticed that on one side there was an abstract butterfly (a universal symbol of hope and renewal) with four delicate heart shapes as wings (a universal symbol of love). The center of it’s body was in the shape of a feminine cross (a universal symbol of the love of God through the blood sacrifice of His only begotten son Jesus Christ). The other side of the piece was very ornate with a tiny cross at it’s center.

I graciously thanked her and said, “God bless you”; to which she replied, pointing again to the cross around her neck, “He already has”. As she was turning away my husband returned and I shared with him what this nice lady had just done, but she just kept walking, as if her mission was complete.

I stood there watching her walk effortlessly away and wondered seriously, had I just encountered a human that God was using to comfort and encourage me at my particularly low point. Or, was she actually an angel of God in human form that I had just entertained, as is mentioned in Hebrews 13:2 and other places in the bible.

I may never know. I do know that in my 36 years of walking with God He has on countless occasions proved to me that He is Jehovah Shammah, “Jehovah is there”. He sees, knows and cares for me at all times. Who can be touched with the feeling of my infirmities because He, in the person of Jesus Christ, had voluntarily experienced them all (Hebrews 4:15).

I will always remember May 23, 2014 as a very, very special day. That day God beautifully, mysteriously, and tangible demonstrated His love to me and lifted my spirits. He consoled and strengthened me so that I could continue to declare His goodness to the world.

Remember dear ones to “Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved (shaken beyond measure)”. Psalms 55:22 Practice it! Believe it!

By Z Hunt

Copyright © 2014

For stirring, inspirational music visit my husbands website at http://www.DannyHuntMusic.com

Also, please visit my fun and informative health and beauty blog at http://www.HowToLookAndFeelLikeYourDaughter.com

I hope you visit http://www.Yoursoulfirst.com often. Whenever you find yourself in need of encouragement or Christian fellowship think of us. And please share it with your friends and family. You will be helping us share the gospel’s good news and strengthen fellow believers.

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HOW TO HANDLE ADVERSITY

When I was a young Christian I didn’t handle adversity well. I worried. I fretted. I brooded for days on end. It took time to learn over the years the power of prayer and professing God’s promises in my life. It took time and experience with God’s faithfulness to trust that He always had my best interest at heart and that He was always working behind the scenes in my favor according to His will and purpose for my life. I am still learning.

I have learned to keep praying and working as an ambassador for Christ at all times and never stop praising the name of Jesus! Remember, Jesus said that, “the servant is not greater than his lord”, (St. John 13:16). Our Lord Jesus was hated, envied, scoffed, devalued, ambushed, considered crazy and a son of Belial by some and if you are doing God’s will and called by His name so will you. In the end He was resurrected and vindicated by the same power that is working in and for you and me today!

And don’t be caught off guard or surprised if some of your most grievous wounds come from friends, family, fellow believers or your own falterings. Learn to over-look destructive behavior, pray for them, forgive them, forgive yourself, correct your course as need be and press on. The world, the flesh and the devil will use whatever or whoever they can to discourage and embitter you; which is purposed in part to hinder the work of the Holy Spirit in and through you.

You must learn to press through trials and temptations because you are the light for this dark world and you must work as Christ’s ambassador while it is day. The night is coming, (discern the times) when no man can work, so press on.

If sickness or lack visit you, remember they are defeated foes by the finished work of the cross and your faith in it. Profess that by His stripes you are healed (Isaiah 53:5). The scars Jesus bore through scourging and buffeting have already purchased our healing from all manner of disease. And because the Lord is your shepard, profess that you shall not lack….goodness and mercy shall follow you all the days of your life (Psalms 23:1,6). Believe it! Proclaim it with your lips! There is creative power in your declarations of His promises. Submit to God, resist the devil and his works and he will flee from you (James 4:7).

Even when your heart is temporarily heavy by a myriad of difficulties. Keep giving Him the sacrifice of your praise because that is one of the things the accuser of the brethren (Satan) wants to rob from you. Every time you praise God with your whole heart it is a stark reminder to the accuser of the glorious assignment he once had, as God’s chief worship leader. The joy of the Lord is your strength (Neh. 8:10)! His influence in your life’s circumstances is weakened and you are strengthened/anchored in the Lord!!!

This strengthening is a mysterious undertaking of the soul. It is a taking up of your cross to follow Him (Luke 9:23). It is a coming to know Him not only in the power of His resurrection, but in the fellowship of His sufferings (Philippians 3:10) .

You don’t want fair weather relationships do you? Well neither does God. Endure hardness as you continuously worship Him in spirit and truth. Your reward will far out way your trials. Believe it!

By Z Hunt.

Copyright © 2014

For stirring, inspirational music visit my husbands website at http://www.DannyHuntMusic.com

Also, please visit my fun and informative health and beauty blog at http://www.HowToLookAndFeelLikeYourDaughter.com

I hope you visit http://www.Yoursoulfirst.com often. When ever you find yourself in need of encouragement or Christian fellowship think of us. And please share it with your friends and family. You will be helping us share the gospel’s good news and strengthen fellow believers.

Posted in Nuggets For The Soul | Leave a comment