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Take Care

Be careful about what you receive.
A few weeks ago, I decided to go see my doctor after a dream and a couple of conversations. (Getting me to go to the doctor is probably more difficult than geting a bill through Congress!)
He ordered a couple of diagnostics, including a chest X-ray, since I am at risk of lung problems.
My first X-ray showed a nodule in my left lung. As soon as I heard that, I called some friends and asked them to agree with me in prayer. My sense: I was not to pick this up; I was to stand in faith and not fear.
I had to get a second set of “pictures.” They came back “normal.”
This is the second time in my life that I have heard God say very clearly that I was not to own a diagnosis. The first one was in 2000: I had been told that I had FibroMyalgia. Immediately I heard, “Don’t pick that up; don’t own it. It is not yours.”
I had symptoms for almost a year.
Then, I was praying and fasting in preparation for a conference I was going to.
Most of the time, I clean house or work in my yard when I fast: It helps me to focus. This time was no different.

In the middle of cleaning the cat’s litter tray, I heard, “If anyone says you have Fibromyalgia, they’re lying: You have been healed.” I didn’t have a single symptom after that.

This time, the possibility of a life threatening condition challenged me to reaffirm my zeal for living. I’m searching out new goals and dreams; I’m pressing into prophetic words that still need to be fulfilled.
I will have a long, joyful, prosperous life; I will not accept anything less than that!

Now to be clear, I am not talking about Mind Over Matter or the power of positive thinking; I am standing on the word of God and declaring to you that you have choices to make: Will you receive curses, even “benevolent” ones – negative characterizations, predictions, diagnoses, general opinions – that are not in line with God’s plans for you? Will you hold to lies, such as, “God has made you ill…or poor…”
OR
Will you seek God, his Kingdom and righteousness? Will you agree with blessings?

Take care: Choose what you will receive or not. Being able to say, “No” is vital to prosperous, blessed living; saying “yes” to the good things that God has for you is even more important.

By the way, it is equally important to guard your lips: Take care not to utter curses about yourself and others; be diligent in proclaiming blessings.

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ALL AND NOTHING

How does knowing that God is good, that He is always in a good mood; that He loves you intimately and completely affect the way you live?

 

I heard a talk several months ago, in which the speaker said that most of us practice what he would call ,practical atheism.”  We believe in God; yet when it comes to making decisions, we rely on ungodly counsel or use our own wits, instead of asking God what HE wants us to do and cooperating with him.  Interesting.  After pondering this for a long time, I have decided that his point has merit.

 

I remember what big news it was to me when I learned that the saying, “God helps those who help themselves” isn’t true.  I was in college.  As I read the Bible for the first time, really, I discovered Scripture passages like these:

 

“I can do all things in Him who strengthens me.”  Philippians 4:13

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5

And my God will supply all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus.”  Philippians 4:19

“For nothing will be impossible with God.” Luke 1:37

“Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.”  Mark 10:27

“God works all things together for good for those who love Him and are called according to His purpose.”  Romans 8:28

 

My pastor says that there is no problem or situation that would not be radically changed if we really knew how much God loves us.

 

What do you say?  Is my pastor right?

 

Most loving Father,
We receive the spirit of wisdom and revelation that You give to us so that we know You better.  Open the eyes of our hearts so that we really get how much You love us.  By Your grace, we lay down all atheism and put our whole trust in You.  Thank You for Your goodness.  Amen.

 

(…spirit of wisdom and revelation is from Ephesians 1:17)

EXPECTATION vs EXPECTANCY

“Expectation leads to fear; expectancy leads to hope.” Danny Silk

My pastor has been meditating on this and has shared it with me a couple of times.
So, let’s take a gander at it:

“Expectation leads to fear…”
It can, if we are thinking that a situation is going to be painful, confrontational or difficult in some other way.  It could be a job interview or the office Christmas party.  For me, it’s gatherings where I can’t really move freely or join in fully.

I think expectations can also lead to disappointment, when they are not met.  This also leads to anger and offense.  I am betting that a lot of people leave Church because they were looking for things they didn’t find.

Here’s a question:  When are expectations healthy and good; when are they hurtful and unwise?
The implication in Danny Silk’s comment is that expectations are always undesirable; that we should lay them all down.
I’m not so sure about that.
They do reflect hopes and standards; they help us to set goals and boundaries.  Sometimes, expectations call us to re-examine our ideals and desires.

Perhaps the more biblical approach is to submit them to Holy Spirit and let Him help us sort the treasures.

“…Expectancy leads to hope.”

This part of Mr. Silk’s quote intrigues me.  His point is, when we know that God is good and that He has good things for us, we can simply rest and anticipate with eagerness.
Now the same gathering has no fear or disappointment, because God is in charge of the outcome.

I’m not able to go to the place of expectancy without expectation just yet.  I do think that both have their places.

Holy Spirit, we ask for discernment and wisdom.  Let our desires and expectations match Yours; reveal any wants that need to be laid down.  Most of all, teach us to trust in Your goodness.  Amen.