A Life that Is Joyful

A life that is joyful is a life that is full of joy. The Lord wants us to be full of joy and He tells us how to have that kind of life. When He walked on earth He said to His disciples that He spoke these things to them that their joy may be made full. What are these things?

John 15:11 These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.

When we learn to abide, which means live, in His love then our joy will be made full and His joy will be in us. How do we learn to live in His love? He tells us in His Word.

John 15:9-10 Just as the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love; just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.

The way we learn to keep His commandments is to abide in His Word. The one who abides in His Word and His Words abide in him will also abide in His love. He wants you to abide in Him and His Words abide in you. The Lord has some amazing promises for the people who abide in His Word and His Words abide in them. He says that they can ask whatever they wish! Who among us would not love to see our prayers answered and also to be able to ask whatever we wish? When the reward is great then it puts a greater value on the command.

John 15:7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.

Do you believe that if you abide in Him and His words abide in you that you can ask whatever you wish and it will be done for you? Do you have any unfulfilled wishes? You might say that it must be according to His will but that phrase is not in this promise. It says that you can ask what you wish and it will be done for you. The Lord also says that if you do this then you will bear much fruit and the Father will be glorified.

John 15:8 My Father is glorified by this, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be My disciples.

To abide in His Word and His Words abide in you means that you live in His Word and His Words live in you. When they live in you then you and His Word become one and His Word is expressed through your life. In other words, since the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, Jesus will dwell among others through you. You will keep His commandments because they are so much a part of you. This is how Jesus lived when He was on earth.

Psalm 40:7,8 Then I said, “Behold, I come;
In the scroll of the book it is written of me.
I delight to do Your will, O my God;
Your Law is within my heart.”

When His Word is in you and you abide in His Word then it will be your delight to do His will. When you delight in something then it becomes the joy of your heart and your joy is made full when you do it. Are your wishes filled and is your joy full? Take the Lord at His Word and do exactly as He has commanded us and you will see your prayers answered and your joy full.

Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself in the Lord;
And He will give you the desires of your heart.

Jesus came to do the Father’s will and He wants us to do His will.

John 6:38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me.

When you live this way then His desires will become your desires and your desire will be to fulfill His desire for your life. Your life will overflow with great joy even in the midst of trials and suffering.

Hebrews 12:2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Jesus knew what it meant to have joy. Joy comes from living in His presence and His life being lived through you.

Psalm 16:11 You will make known to me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.

Jesus lived a joyful life and this is His will for you.

John 15:11 These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.

 

 

A Life with Good Words

Someone once said that many of the people that we encounter during any given day are going through some sort of crisis. Whether that is true no one can say but we can say that most, if not all, of the people we encounter need a word of encouragement. They need a good word.

Proverbs 12:25 Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs it down,
But a good word makes it glad.

Life and death are in the power of your words and you will eat the fruit of the words you say. You will either give life and receive life or your words will give death and you will receive death. How many times have we regretted the words we said and we can never take them back.

Proverbs 18:21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
And those who love it will eat its fruit.

Your words will give you great satisfaction if you use your tongue according to God’s ways.

Proverbs 12:14 A man will be satisfied with good by the fruit of his words,
And the deeds of a man’s hands will return to him.

You will receive great joy when you give a good word in the right situation. Your words can make a difference in someone’s life. You can influence someone by a word of encouragement or comfort.

Proverbs 25:11 Like apples of gold in settings of silver
Is a word spoken in right circumstances.

When someone strokes you with the a good word that word will go down into your innermost being. If someone believes in you, when it seems that no one else does, and expresses it in words then you will sometimes remember those words for years because they went down into your innermost parts.

Proverbs 20:30 Stripes that wound scour away evil,
And strokes reach the innermost parts.

A word of encouragement does wonders to a person. Your words can destroy or build up. When you have children your words are far more important than you realize and your children will remember nearly every word you say to them. Never speak in anger. Anger will never achieve what is right and will often cause great harm.

James 1:19,20 This you know, my beloved brethren. But everyone must be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger; for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God.

The words spoken in gentleness will often turn away anger.

Proverbs 15:1 A gentle answer turns away wrath,
But a harsh word stirs up anger.

The only way that we can give a gentle answer is if we have a gentle spirit. The mouth speaks from that which is on the inside and the spirit of a man communicates even more than his words.

I Peter 3:4 but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God.

Finally, the only way that we will be able to give good words to others will be if we listen to the good Words of the Lord.

Joshua 23:14 “Now behold, today I am going the way of all the earth, and you know in all your hearts and in all your souls that not one word of all the good words which the Lord your God spoke concerning you has failed; all have been fulfilled for you, not one of them has failed.

If you have tasted the good word of the Lord then ask Him to help you give a good word to someone else. You can make a difference for the Lord by refreshing the hearts of those who you come in contact with by your words. Just as a cup of cold water refreshes the body of the quenched one so a good word refreshes the soul of one who is thirsty for encouragement.

Hebrews 5:4 and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come,

A Life that Knows the Truth

There is only One who is true and His Words are truth. If you do not know the truth then you will be deceived and the meaning of deception is that you are not aware that you are deceived, so much so that you believe a lie. Your beliefs will be manifested in your life so if you believe a lie then you will live a lie.

Proverbs 23:7 For as he thinks within himself, so he is.

Whatever goes into your heart and mind will come out in your words and actions. For this reason the Lord says to watch over your heart with all diligence.

Proverbs 4:23 Watch over your heart with all diligence,
For from it flow the springs of life.

Fill your heart with what is good and good will flow from your mouth and life. Fill your heart and mind with trash and trash will flow from you.

Luke 6:45 The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.

Your heart is a treasure chest and what you put into it is what you treasure. If you value your relationship with the Lord and value what He values then you will put His Words in your heart and treasure them.

Psalm 119:9-11 How can a young man keep his way pure?
By keeping it according to Your word.
With all my heart I have sought You;
Do not let me wander from Your commandments.
Your word I have treasured in my heart,
That I may not sin against You.

Do you want the Lord? You must have a pure heart and clean hands. You must guard what goes into your heart. Do you want to come into His presence and know Him?

Psalm 24:3,4 Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord?
And who may stand in His holy place?
He who has clean hands and a pure heart,
Who has not lifted up his soul to falsehood
And has not sworn deceitfully.

When you come into His presence then you will see Him and you will also see yourself for who you really are. You will no longer be deceived nor will you want to life up your soul to falsehood but will speak the truth. You will draw near to Him.

James 4:8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.

Do you want to know the nearness of God? Do you want to know His sweet presence? It begins by spending time with Him in His Word and prayer and seeing Him. Then after seeing Him and allowing Him to cleanse your heart through His Word, you then confess your sin and draw near to Him.

John 15:3 You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.

The nearness of God will be your good and you will see the goodness of the Lord. When you know Him then you will know the truth and the truth will change your life.

Psalm 73:28 But as for me, the nearness of God is my good;
I have made the Lord God my refuge,
That I may tell of all Your works.

You will want to talk about Him and tell others all of the wonderful things that He has done. If you find yourself defending your actions or wanting to go to movies where you know in your heart that Jesus would not go to then stop…is it worth it? The Bibles says that Eve was deceived and she paid a huge price for her sin. Would someone who wants to know the Lord want to be with you because of your clean hands and pure heart?

Psalm 101:6,7 My eyes shall be upon the faithful of the land, that they may dwell with me;
He who walks in a blameless way is the one who will minister to me.
He who practices deceit shall not dwell within my house;
He who speaks falsehood shall not maintain his position before me.

Those who want the Lord will seek out others who want the Lord. Do you want to marry a godly man? Do you want godly friends? You must become a godly young lady. Be faithful to the Lord in all that you do and especially in what goes into your heart and mind. You can not have both the world and the Lord. If you try to have both then it is only a matter of time before your heart is deceived and you no longer will want or hear the truth, which is Jesus, for He said, “I am the way, the truth and the life”.

A Life that Runs Well

The Lord has called us to run. One of the ways that He wants us to run is to run from temptation. People often will talk about resisting temptation but that is not what the Lord says, he says to flee from temptation.

II Timothy 2:22 Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.

The Lord says to flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace with those who have a pure heart. The Bible says that those who have a pure heart will see God.

Matthew 5:8 Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

Those with a pure heart will not be deceived by the lusts of the heart. The word “lust” in the Greek means “desire”. A lust is a desire that is outside of the will of God. Many lusts are greater temptations in our youth because we don’t want to wait for the Lord to give us His gifts. We want them now and so we “give in” to temptation.

James 1:14-16 But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death. Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren.

However, when you get what you want and it is not God’s will then you also lose the ability to fully enjoy it, that is why, the Bible talks about the passing pleasure of sin. It is only for a moment and then the guilt comes. We were deceived. We are always deceived when we sin. However, if our friends have a pure heart then they will help us in our weakness. The Lord will also help you flee from temptation. He understands your weakness.

Hebrews 4:15,16 For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

The other way that we are to run is that we are to run to Him and we are to run with endurance the race set before us.

Hebrews 12:1-3 Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

The saints who have gone before us are watching and they are the cloud of witnesses. Therefore, lay aside the things that make it hard for you to run the race and strive to run hard after the Lord. Fix your eyes on Jesus. He is at the right hand of the Father and He is praying for you. He also had to endure and was found faithful. You can do it. This is what grace is all about. Grace is the power and strength to be faithful to the end. Don’t grow weary or lose heart. Ask others to pray for you if you find yourself struggling. We all struggle. Jesus struggled. It is in the struggling that our faith is strengthened. It may seem like forever but in view of eternity it is only a moment. You will never regret being faithful but you will have great regret if you are not faithful.

Psalm 144:4 Man is like a mere breath;
His days are like a passing shadow.

Our life is like a mere breath and our days are a passing shadow but eternity is forever.

 

 

A Life that Waits

Sometimes we need very clear instruction about what to do when we do not know what to do. The Bible gives us that clear instruction. Have you ever been in a situation and you did not know what to do? Has there ever been a time of spiritual darkness in your life? Have you ever wanted God to write something in the sky to tell you what to do? If you have ever struggled with not having “light” on a situation then listen carefully to God’s Word.

Isaiah 50:10 Who is among you that fears the Lord,
That obeys the voice of His servant,
That walks in darkness and has no light?
Let him trust in the name of the Lord and rely on his God.

The Lord says that if you know Him and obey His voice and follow Him but are in a time of darkness then you are to trust Him.Trust Him. Trusting Him means waiting on Him. He promised to lead you. Wait for His leading. Do not take matters into your own hands.

Isaiah 50:11 Behold, all you who kindle a fire,
Who encircle yourselves with firebrands,
Walk in the light of your fire
And among the brands you have set ablaze.
This you will have from My hand:
You will lie down in torment.

You will lie down in torment if you make your own way and light your own fire. Trust Him. He will guide you and lead you in the way you should go.

Proverbs 3:5,6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight.

Jesus really will show you His way. He is the Light and He is the Way. He wants you to walk by faith and trust Him.

John 8:12 Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.”

The Lord wants you to learn to wait on Him. Do not fret for it will only lead to you doing the wrong thing. Even when it seems like everyone else is getting what they want and taking matters into their own hands. Do not be like them but trust in the Lord and wait on Him.

Psalm 37:7,8 Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him;
Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way,
Because of the man who carries out wicked schemes.
Cease from anger and forsake wrath;
Do not fret; it leads only to evildoing.

In God’s perfect timing and according to His lovingkindness He will give you what you need and often what you desire. It will be a gift from Him.

James 1:17 Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.

Not only are His gifts good and perfect but they far exceed anything that you could ever bring about by your own doing. The Lord says that “It is the blessing of the Lord that makes rich and He adds no sorrow to it”. The gifts that He gives do not have drawbacks or sorrow with them. They are perfect and far more than what you could even imagine.

Isaiah 64:4,5 For from days of old they have not heard or perceived by ear,
Nor has the eye seen a God besides You,
Who acts in behalf of the one who waits for Him.
You meet him who rejoices in doing righteousness,
Who remembers You in Your ways.

The Lord will bless you and meet you if only you will remember Him in His ways and His ways are of faith. We walk by faith and not by sight. We trust in Him alone who does what He pleases and loves us perfectly.

Psalm 135:5,6 For I know that the Lord is great
And that our Lord is above all gods.
Whatever the Lord pleases, He does,
In heaven and in earth, in the seas and in all deeps.

And again…

Job 42:2 I know that You can do all things,
And that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted.

He can do all things and if you will only allow His will to be done in your life you will not be disappointed. He wants you to believe in Him and trust Him.

Romans 10:11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.”

A Life that Chooses Life

The Lord presented His people with a choice many years ago and we are presented also with the same choice. We can either choose life or choose death.

Deuteronomy 30:19 I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, the blessing and the curse. So choose life in order that you may live, you and your descendants,

If we do not intentionally choose life then we will be choosing death because that is our bent because of sin. Man chose death in the garden of Eden when He disobeyed God.

Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

That sinful choice was passed down through the generations to all of us. Left to ourselves we will choose sin, which means that we choose to be our own God and the end result is death.

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Death is the curse that comes to us when we do not choose life. The only way that we can choose life is to choose Jesus, for He is life. When we choose Jesus it means that we choose to have Him be our God and rule our lives.

John 14:6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.

When we choose life then we choose the life of Christ in us. We want Him to live through us in the power of the Holy Spirit. He always does what the Father desires and so if you choose Jesus Christ and life then you will do what He wills and that is, you will keep His commandments.

John 8:28 So Jesus said, “When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and I do nothing on My own initiative, but I speak these things as the Father taught Me.

Jesus did nothing on His own initiative. When you choose life you choose Christ and a commitment to keep His commandments and do His will. The only way you can do this is to die to yourself and what you want so that you might live for Him and His will.

Galatians 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.

It is a life of abiding in Him and obeying His commandments.

I John 3:24 The one who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. We know by this that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us.

If you choose Him then He also will make known to others that you are His.

Matthew 2:49,50 And stretching out His hand toward His disciples, He said, “Behold My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven, he is My brother and sister and mother.”

How well do you know His commandments? He wants our love and devotion and these qualities are manifested in our life through keeping His commandments.

John 14:15 If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.

Life is in Jesus Christ and His words are life. Choose life and you will choose Jesus Christ and the evidence of that choice will be obedience to Him.

A Life that is Victorious

We all want to be victorious. It is the way the Lord made us. He made us to win. No one wants to lose or feel like a loser. How can we live a victorious life? There is only one way to live that kind of life.

I John 5:4 For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith.

The first prerequisite to being an overcomer is that you must be born again. Have you been born again?

John 3:3-8 Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus *said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be amazed that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

You must be born again of the Spirit. You will fail over and over again in the flesh. The only way that you can have the victory is in the Spirit because Jesus overcame and He lives in you if you have been born again. How do you become born again?

John 1:12,13 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

If you receive Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior then He gives you the incredible gift of becoming His child. You become born of God into His family. It is by faith that we receive Him and call upon Him.

Romans 10:9-13 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.” For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

You call on Him in faith and He will save you and you will become His child. How do you get the faith to believe? You receive the faith from hearing God’s Word.

Romans 10:17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.

It only takes a little bit of faith. Your faith will grow as you grow in your relationship with Him. Call on Him. Come to Him. He says that you will not be disappointed. As you grow in your faith then you will see victory in your life. Victory over discouragement. Victory over depression. Victory over sin and sinful habits. You will not only be sorry for the consequences but the Lord will give you a sorrow over your sin. That sorrow will lead to repentance, which is a turning away from your sin and a turning to Him, over and over again until you have been changed and see the victory. This is God’s will for you.

II Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.

He is patient and He is kind. Come to Him with your struggles and your burdens. He will take them and give you His peace and His joy.

Romans 2:4 Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance?