making the grade

I know, I know two posts real close together. all I can say is that God is still on His throne and is blessing. AMEN!

today our church went soulwinning. we call it Sowing & Reaping. it is the perfect title as #1: it is a biblical command and #2: not everyone wants to talk while witnessing. every soulwinning-Reaper needs a silent partner standing there praying. mine is a short-statured, aged man whom I know God loves dearly. he and his wife have been saved longer than I’ve been alive and I’m certain that God has them both in the crevices of His mighty hands. while we walked he mentioned that he didn’t feel up to coming, yet he came anyway. his walk was slower today but he didn’t stop, even when I suggested he should. I know God will bless him, if not here then in Heaven.

last Monday God showed me I was being tested. of course only He knows when it will end. today I read in Deuteronomy 8:2, “And thou shalt remember all the way which the LORD thy God led thee these forty years in the wilderness, to humble thee, and to prove thee, to know what was in thine heart, whether thou wouldest keep his commandments, or no.”

yes, God is continuing to humble me. He did today. now He is onto proving me. true He knows my heart but He wants me to see what is in my heart. what will stop me from moving forward with Him as the leader? in order to prove something or someone you put them to the test. will they make the grade or will they fail? God is the ultimate teacher and His tests are only for our good (Deut. 6:24).

but how do you pass one of God’s tests? the same way you live for Him. placing all your trust and faith in the one true God. how do I know this? I saw it today in a short-statured, aged man walking along side me while Sowing & Reaping. may I become as faithful in keeping His command. may I make the grade.


the word is resort

Deuteronomy 1:42b, “Go not up, neither fight; for I am not among you; lest ye be smitten before your enemies.” this post accompanies combined heartache and joy. the heartache is not even a drop as to what my Lord experienced on the cross.

as previously posted, beyond a shadow of a doubt, I believe God called me to the mission field. along with my salvation, I am certain of the call. this is the 2nd time He has called me to missions with the 1st being at age 15. now here is the heartache. it is NOT for the foreign mission field (although He revealed to me the place I could have served). that I traded in for what the devil had behind door #2. I vividly remember the moment I resorted to that life instead of the one God called me into. a chilling thought.

along with the aforementioned verse, I base this fact on the qualifications given for a pastor in I Timothy 3:1-6. the qualifications of a missionary are the same. the three that disqualify me are thus: not blameless, sexual immorality and the lack of good behavior. my sincerest apologies to my readers.

now here is the joy. what I thought was to foreign missions is actually to the town in which I live. God needs men, and women, to serve Him in the church just as much as on the field. both sets are called to live Godly lives. the things in which God has shown me to increase my faith need to be implemented in every Christian’s life. whether pew or pasture, God does not differ the guidelines to live a holy life.

now I have exuberant joy as this too is the will of God. true it is also a consequence but there are a multitude of those He should have given. thank God for His mercy! thank God I no longer have to resort but instead yield to Him.


a daughter of Moab

Numbers 25:1, "And Israel abode in Shittim, and the people began to commit whoredom with the daughters of Moab."

this post will be harsh towards me as I have gotten comfortable. not just where I live but also in my walk with the Father.

the Israelites were only miles away from the Promised Land given to them by God. close enough they could smell the milk and honey. yet we read they chose to abide in Shittim. and who dwelt right beside them? none other than the Moabites (descendants of Lot). the bible says they began to commit sexual immorality with the Moabite daughters. how did this start? they abode! they got comfortable in the wilderness! their guard was let down just long enough to allow a pretty Moabite female to step in and lead them astray.

I’m learning that although God has pulled me out of sexual immorality the temptation to be immoral will never go away. no matter where I go as a son of God the devil will always have a daughter right there to tempt me. this time the Father has opened my eyes to this trick of the devil and showed me my acquired liking for a "Moabite" daughter. it is on the fringe but close enough to smell.

it's time to step away from this temptation for two reasons; #1: it could cost me God’s will for my life and #2: see number one. the only way I am able to resist is with the Father’s help. He has promised He will be there, even when I am uncomfortable.


lessons from Balaam

found in Numbers 22

lesson one: do no less and no more than what God as ordered and approved for your specific task, verse 18.

lesson two: to see God more fully you must first humble yourself (a simple beast of burden saw the angel of the Lord first), verse 25.

lesson three: be willing to let God use you for anything He desires (even God can use a beast of burden to speak, but it still had to carry his owner the rest of the journey), verse 28.

lesson four: confession only draws you closer to God and brings you back into His way, verse 34.

lesson five: speak only what God has told you to say – no less and no more, verse 38.


but by Grace

Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, writer of 13 books of the New Testament, and a former persecutor of Christians, was human. he had emotions, cares and most importantly the trait of sin. in Romans 8:24 we hear him crying out as a wretched man that he knows he is. but by Grace he didn’t stop there. he wrote in verse 25, "I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin."

Paul, being directed by the Holy Spirit, allowed us to see his real self. the Spirit within that warred against his flesh. the human that cried out in verse 24 was also the same that gave thanks to God for paying his pardon thus freeing his soul from death and hell. but he also told us his own mind served the law of God and his flesh the law of sin. it is comforting to know that Paul had the same battles I face in this day-to-day Christian life. those spiritual battles that are given to God as I cannot win alone.

but by Grace he didn’t stop there. in chapter 8 Paul writes of being led by the Holy Spirit. verse 14, "For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God."

currently I am in 7:25. by Grace, 8:14 is approaching.


the moving cloud

I know. the blog posts are few and far between. but when you are in God's classroom, passing notes is strictly forbidden! the only chance I get is in between sessions.

Numbers 9:18 23 tells of how and when the Israelites followed God in the wilderness. Verse 18, "At the commandment of the Lord the children of Israel journeyed, and at the commandment of the Lord they pitched: as long as the cloud abode upon the tabernacle they rested in their tents." right now my tent is pitched and for a good reason. God is remolding this vessel though the vessel insists on creating new cracks. but every time a new crack is made He comes along and in love mends the vessel.

yesterday I had the opportunity to watch Him mend. and even though this vessel still has broken pieces, cracks and missing parts He still chose to use me. we as humans still use cups and dishes even when they are broken, chipped or even have cracks in them. how much more so does our Heavenly Father use us even though we are no better than our serving ware? as along as He knows the part that is usable is fully relying on Him and His Holy Spirit, then it is usable. I can only tell you of one instance yesterday.

some of the work at my part time job is to deliver documents to local downtown businesses. yesterday afternoon, with all the sunshine, I grabbed the documents, filled my shirt pocket with tracts and decided to walk while delivering both sets of documents. now the one set had a specific destination to the businesses but the other set had Divine destinations to specific individuals. so after delivery of the first set, I headed back to my job and found I had one more tract to hand out. it was then came across a friend I hadn't seen in a while. the Father gave me an opportunity to brag on Him AND give out the last tract.

will they read the tract? only God knows. but what I do know is that even while God has you pitched, even when He is remolding and reshaping the vessel, He can use you. if He can use someone like me, while reshaping this lump of clay, then I know He can use you. will you allow Him to use the usable part?


a dying habit

old habits die hard. a true-to-form phrase. I’ve realized that the only way for certain old habits to die is to give them completely over to the Lord.

the children of Israel was commanded not to defile themselves with the customs within the land of Canaan, Leviticus 18:24 & 25. God was going to destroy the Canaanites simply because of their wickedness. He certainly did not want His children partaking nor acquiring any of the soon-to-be-former inhabitant’s customs.

and how did He want His children to remove themselves from these customs? Verse 30, "Therefore shall ye keep mine ordinance, that ye commit not any one of these abominable customs, which were committed before you, and that ye defile not yourselves therein: I am the Lord your God." it sounds easy enough to keep His ordinance, but that isn’t how you remove yourself. that is found in the last line, "I am the Lord your God."

one can choose to keep God’s commandments. one can choose to not partake in the abominable customs. one can even go so far as to do everything within their power to not defile themselves. but none of that is worth the time and effort if you fail to admit that God is your Lord. choosing to rely on your own strength, and not the Lord’s, will only get you so far away, but not far enough.

last night temptation abounded. and I admit I almost partook of a former custom. so today the Father sat me down and revealed that my will needs to break. God is also my Lord, so my will must conform to His will and His way. I can willfully go either towards Him or away from Him. true this habit is dying but it needs to die in accordance to His will, and not to me just willing to no longer partake in the customs. His will must be complete.