Find Your Tribe. Love Them Hard.

Yes, some have gotten the Greatest Commandment down. They truly love the Lord with all their heart, soul, and mind, and that’s wonderful. Our relationship with Him matters the most. The Apostle Paul said, “it is my determined purpose to know him…”

But what about the second commandment? Jesus said that it’s just as important as the first. We are to love our neighbor as ourselves.

Who’s our neighbor? Only those that are in your circle? The hurting, the grieving? Those walking in a storm or a valley? We have all been there. That prompting we get from the Holy Spirit when He whispers someone’s name to us, or those we see before us with signposts shouting, “there is an issue here”? Do we think a message on Facebook or a text is enough to pull anyone out of a demonic fog that’s been sent to destroy them?

NO! It’s NOT ENOUGH! Call them, meet with them personally.

Connecting with people, looking into their eyes, not to “shoot the breeze “, but instead to determine the heart of the matter. Then we can pray heaven down on them, and stay with them until His Peace is present. Actual relationships with His people, “being there”, can change, even save, a life.

Mental illness is real. The Spirit realm is real. Let us wake up, and pray up. Let’s put on our armor and march forward with LOVE into the enemies camp, and pull them out, one by one, through the power of real relationships.

We don’t have to have the title of a pastor to minister to those around us. We are to STAY STRONG, STAY READY, and breathe life into our circle every time we have a chance. Let us make the MOST of every opportunity for these days are evil.

I’m DONE with the enemy taking people I love out. I desire to STAY READY and FULL OF THE SPIRIT, and to declare, “not on my watch”. Friend, the Kingdom is counting on us. Someone in our lives needs us right now.

I pray God gives us eyes to see, and that we all realize this life is not about “me”.

Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.  Matthew 22: 37-39 

Don’t Give Up!

No matter what has happened or is happening, be aware of the living, loving Father who watches over your life with every beat of your heart.  He knows the wrong’s the hurts and hurdles. He knows the plots the schemes and the traps. He sees them all and says to you, “My child, DO NOT be afraid! Though sorrow may last for a night my JOY…my COMPLETE supernatural JOY will reach down from the heavens and wrap you in the morning light. Yes, many have come against you, many fiery darts of the enemy.”

But your Father says…“I will hold you!  I will carry you!  I will strengthen you! Do not be afraid!  I have seen all and in My time…in My way it will all make sense.  As of today this moment in time walk by faith AND NOT SIGHT take My hand!  I know you don’t understand but trust Me when I say I love you with an everlasting love and THIS IS NOT THE END!  You’re my child! I love you.  I have purpose for you. I have given you the sword of the Spirit. The power of the Holy Spirit and the authority in my name!  You will walk and not faint.  You will run and not grow weary!  I say REST.  Rest in My grace that is your place. Those dreams those desires…Yes, everything will come to completion as you trust in Me. This IS NOT THE END. SO LAUGH AND BE JOYFUL!  SO SING AND SHOUT THE VICTORY! Together with Me WE WIN!”

For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.  So we fix our eyes on what is seen, but on what is unseen.  For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.  – 2 Corinthians 4:17-18

God will bless you If you don’t give up when your faith is being tested. James 1:12

When you have JESUS you have everything!

When you have JESUS you have everything. He’s with you, right now in this moment. 

I’ve lived enough trips around the sun to learn firsthand that He is the one and only one who keeps His promises.  He is the Promise Keeper. Not some promises, but He uses this word over and over in the Holy Scriptures, it’s a word I’ve grown to love it’s the word “ALL.”   ALL of his promises are “Yes!” and “Amen!” He heals me of ALL my diseases.

The righteous person may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all. Psalms 34:19

In the greatest loss or disappointment when you awake to what seems a nightmare there is a deep knowing that someday, somehow God will make sense of all this. God will have the last word.  The scars, the wounds the hurts that have been hurled your way. God will make sense of it all.  The Promise Keeper shouts, “Hey YOU, (insert your name here), I’ve begun a good work in YOU! I will continue that work until the day of Christ.” So little by little and day by day, His mercies are new every morning and He is transforming you into a masterpiece fit for the Master’s use. His use!

So when your feet hit the ground in the morning instead of being steered off your destiny by a text or a call or a distraction, set up from the enemy to cloud your mind, dig deep into planting your face right in His. Face to face with the One who can fix it all, heal it all, restore it all, and make sense of it all!  

The Promise Keeper says, “If you seek me you will find me if you draw close to me I WILL draw close to YOU.”

That’s a PROMISE from the Holy of Holies, from the Author and Finisher of Your faith. It’s a PROMISE from the Ancient of Days.

So right in the middle of the chaos and confusion, you will have CHRIST which is TRUTH, which is LIGHT, which is PEACE.  It’s yours just for the taking!  Remember wounded warrior you’re not alone, never truly alone and Abba has all you need for all your days including this one.  When you have JESUS you have everything. He’s with you right now in this moment and ALL always means ALL!  Just breathe, He’s got this. More importantly, He’s got YOU!

Because God Loves You…

You can love you!

The Lord has appeared of old to me, saying.  “Yes, I have loved you with an Everlasting Love, therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.”  Jeremiah 31:3

For the Lord, your God is living among you.  He is a mighty savior. He will take delight in you with gladness.  With his love, he will calm all your fears.  He will rejoice over you with joyful songs. Zephaniah 3:17

My thoughts toward you are countless as the sand on the seashore. Psalms 139: 17 & 18

Mightier than the waves of the sea is His love for you.  Psalms 93:9

For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed but my Steadfast Love shall not depart from you. Isaiah 54:10

God loves you more in a moment than anyone could in a lifetime.

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A Thrill of Hope

“There I will give her back her vineyards, and will make the Valley of Achor a door of hope.”
Hosea 2:15

God is the only one who can make a valley of trouble a door of hope.
I believe in Miracles.

I believe in the ones I have seen and I’ve seen many.

I also believe in the Miracles that I am praying for at this exact moment and do not see at all with my natural eyes but I see with the eyes of faith. What do I mean by that? Jesus says…

“24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”  Mark 11:24 (NIV)

It’s just as simple as reaching out with the hands of faith and the eyes of faith and saying, “I have it now!”

When I was a teenager I would answer every altar call given, if a preacher said, “Do you want Jesus as Savior and Lord?”  I would run to the front.

My name must be written in many churches all over the Ozarks!  One day I remember sitting in the pew and I remember saying, “I don’t have to go down to the front or raise my hand. I’ve done that! I have already received that gift. I am saved! I have it now! I’m born again, translated out of darkness into the kingdom of light.”

How do you know you have it? YOU JUST DO!

That’s the same way you receive anything you may be praying for at this exact moment.

It’s a THRILL of HOPE when you go from fear to FAITH.

It’s a THRILL of HOPE when you go from sickness to HEALING.

It’s a THRILL of HOPE when you go from worry to PEACE.

Storm clouds may very well be hovering over your home right now but I’m praying that you will see a beam of light.  A glimmer of HOPE that tomorrow is going to be a better day that your best days are ahead of you and NOT behind you. I’m praying for HOPE to BURST your heart open and right now as you stand on God’s Word to know that He is the GREAT promise KEEPER.  I pray every ounce of HOPE you may have is in Him and I believe in the name of Jesus, HE WILL NEVER LET YOU DOWN!  And He is NOT going to start now. I don’t care what “they say.” I care more about what He has ALREADY said.  His promises are YES and Amen and they belong to you, each and every one.

HE is a GOOD DAD!

With chubby little fingers and a smile that would melt the coldest heart Elianah, my six-year-old, stands in front of me.  With curly blonde hair and big blue eyes that hold so much love and wonder she very carefully hands me her letter to Santa. “Will you give it to him?” she asks?

“Well, of course!” I reply with great enthusiasm.

I take the list and look over every single item written in crayon and chuckle at the precious misspelled words.  It’s so cute I want to frame it.  As Elianah’s daddy, this scrap piece of paper with her Christmas wishes has NOW instantly become my TOP priority. As her father, I desire to give her every single item her heart so desires.  I WANT TO BLESS HER!  Why? Because I’m her father and I love her and desire to lavish her with MY LOVE.

Listen, maybe your earthly father is gone either physically or emotionally but you’re NOT ALONE! You still have a DADDY that loves YOU!

Your HEAVENLY father wants to LAVISH His LOVE on you the exact same way.

“If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!”   Matthew 7:11

So ask.  We have not because we ask not. So ASK that your JOY may be COMPLETE.  Jesus said whatsoever things you desire, believe that you receive them and you will have them.

The LOVE I have in my heart for my daughter, Elianah, is THE LOVE your Father has in His heart for you. He not only hears you He sees the much-needed desires. He feels the desires written on the table of your heart. Your needs have INSTANTLY become His TOP priority. Simply because you are his child and he is your Father.

I’m believing God with you that those things that are heavy on your heart as we close out 2016, those things that can’t be wrapped and put under a tree, will come to pass in your life as a miracle you’ve been praying for and 2017 will be the year of Answered Prayer for YOU a child of GOD!

God knows EXACTLY what you need. HE is a GOOD DAD and with HIM EVERYTHING is POSSIBLE!

“Abba, Father, he said, everything is possible for You.”  ~ Jesus  (Mark 14:36)

My “Neighbor”

Love your neighbor as yourself. Romans 13:9

 
When I close my eyes and think of my child hood the deepest memories of Christmas come flooding back.  I see her…I affectionately called her “Neighbor.”  Her real name was Connie Lee Jones.

As a child I wanted to buy my mom a gift for Christmas but as a family who was already beyond poor I didn’t have a nickel to my name.  That didn’t stop me however because as God would have it… sitting right beside the home I grew up in was a buy, sell and trade antique shop called Buffalo Prairie Trading Post owned and operated by Connie Lee Jones.

As a little boy who could barely see over the glass counters that displayed treasures from all over the world. I would bring in a trinket or toy straight from my toy box and ask Connie “How much for this?”  She would think and look at the item and look back at me and look at the item and then would give me the fair price.  I can still smell the shop.  I remember the sound of the Christmas bells hanging on the door when I would walk in and she would always have a plate of Christmas cookies.  I didn’t have gloves but would pull off the socks that covered my cold hands and after hearing the amount of money I had been given to spend I was SO excited!  I would then spend the next hour looking throughout her entire store for just the perfect present for my mom for Christmas.  Surely THIS would make her happy and give her the JOY she needed.  I would walk the floors of that old creaky shop so long Connie would eventually shut the “Open” sign off and lock up just to let me browse.  I would holler from the back room “How much do i have?”   She would lovingly remind me. Finally after finding just the perfect gift I would lay it on the counter and then she would spend the next fifteen to twenty minutes wrapping my treasured find.  The “just perfect gift” with brown paper and ribbon for my mom! Out the door I would run in the snow making a bee line for my house.  I remember the snow, the moon and the glowing Christmas tree through the window of the old broken down trailer knowing that this gift that I held would truly give my mom the best Christmas ever.  I lost complete contact with Connie over the years and then just last week, I found out my child hood “Neighbor” passed away on the exact same day as her birthday.  Tears, laughs, memories came flooding to my mind that only her and I shared and the reminder from the Holy Spirit that She is now spending Christmas with JESUS this year.  I love you Connie Lee Jones!  Thank you for giving me and my family so many sweet Christmas memories. No more buy, sell or trade for you. You’re in a mansion filled with all your hearts desires. The songs you spent hours writing to your Savior you can now sing to Him face to face. Say hello to my dad will you?  Love you my sweet friend and see you soon, I know you’ll be waiting for me.

 

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