A Life without Excuses

Some of the most powerful words that Jesus spoke are recorded in John 15. He takes away all excuses that we have not to obey Him.

John 15:22 If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin, but now they have no excuse for their sin.

Have you ever felt that God was speaking to you? Yes, we have all felt that at some time God was trying to get our attention. He made us to have fellowship with Him and He desires that all men come to know Him. When we respond to the light that He gives us then we receive more light.

John 15:24 If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would not have sin;

Has anything ever happened in your life that there was no other explanation other than it was a “God thing”. Again, this is the Lord who is seeking you out. The Lord wants to have a relationship with you and fellowship with you.

Revelation 3:19-22 Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me. He who overcomes, I will grant to him to sit down with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.’”

The Lord promises those who respond to Him on earth will reign with Him in heaven. It is your choice. Will you receive His invitation and fellowship with Him and live for Him? The choice is yours.

Psalm 36:1 Transgression speaks to the ungodly within his heart;
There is no fear of God before his eyes.

If you do not listen to Him then your sin will speak to your heart and bring you torment. What do you choose…comfort or torment? Your choice on earth determines your eternal destiny. He allows us to taste of hell through torment here on earth or to taste of heaven through fellowship with Him on earth. When you lay your head on your pillow at night are your thoughts of your sin or unfaithfulness or of the love and faithfulness of the Lord for that day?

I Peter 2:6-8 For this is contained in Scripture: Behold, I lay in Zion a choice stone, a precious corner stone,
And he who believes in Him will not be disappointed.” This precious value, then, is for you who believe; but for those who disbelieve, The stone which the builders rejected,
This became the very corner stone,” and, “A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense”; for they stumble because they are disobedient to the word, and to this doom they were also appointed.

There will be no excuse when we see Him. He has tried to speak to all of us and to make Himself known to us. The Bible says that the kindness of God leads us to repentance. He loves you. Is there something in the Bible that you struggle with and it is a stumbling block that is keeping you from a totally surrendered life to Him? Ask Him to help you with it. His plans for you are good and you can trust Him.

Jeremiah 29:11-13 For I know the plans that I have for you,’  declares the Lord, ‘plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.

Seek Him while He may be found and call upon Him while He is near before it is too late and you have no hope. It is appointed unto man to die and then comes judgment the Bible says.

 

 

A Life that Understands Suffering

There is no question that with suffering there is pain but if we can understand more of God’s perspective on suffering then it helps us endure it and remain faithful. It is in our suffering that not only are we made more like Jesus Christ but the devil will tempt us. There are two kinds of suffering. First, is the suffering we bring on ourselves by either not knowing or not doing the will of God. Ignorance does not exclude us from the consequences therefore the more knowledge we have of God’s ways then the less of this kind of suffering we will have in our life.

I Peter 2:21 For what credit is there if, when you sin and are harshly treated, you endure it with patience? But if when you do what is right and suffer for it you patiently endure it, this finds favor with God.

If you sin and the consequences seem harsh then it is your due recompense.

Colossians 3:25 For he who does wrong will receive the consequences of the wrong which he has done, and that without partiality.

The second kind of suffering is the suffering that God has allowed for His glory. You may not understand the reason here on earth but if you learn to respond to this kind of suffering then you will experience some of His glory here on earth. If you do not sin but do what is right and suffer for it then this suffering allows you to find favor with God. Favor with God is that He has turned His face toward you and will bless you. He says that the Spirit of God and glory will rest on you. You will know His presence and it is the sweetest feeling in the world. Words can not explain the comfort and peace you will feel and it will greatly minimize your suffering.

I Peter 4:12-14 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing, so that also at the revelation of His glory you may rejoice with exultation. If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you.

One of the purposes of testing is to test your faith and to strengthen your faith. You might feel very weak during the testing but what the testing is showing you is where your weakness is so that you can strengthen yourself even more in the Lord. Also, so that you might be able to strengthen others when they experience similar testing of their faith.

I Peter 4:1,2 Therefore, since Christ has suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same purpose, because he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, so as to live the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for the lusts of men, but for the will of God.

Another reason for your suffering is it sets you free from sin so that you will no longer live for the desires of the flesh but for the will of God. Suffering is part of the Christian life but if you know His promises then it is much easier to endure. The Lord Himself has promised to come to you.

I Peter 5:10 After you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself perfect, confirm, strengthen and establish you.

Finally, what do you do when you are going through a time of trials and suffering? You are to thank Him for the trial and then the Lord says to ask Him for wisdom. This wonderful promise is for anyone who is suffering, whether you have caused it yourself or it is a part of His will for you and you did not do anything wrong. He says that He will give you wisdom and without reproach. Without reproach means that the Lord does not say to us, “I told you so!”. Rather, what it means, is that He is saying is that He promises to give wisdom to anyone who will ask Him and He will give it generously.

James 1:2-5 Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.

Thanking the Lord is an expression of faith and keeps the devil from getting a foothold in your thought life by bringing the Lord into your thoughts. As mentioned earlier it is when we go through trials that we struggle the most in our thought life because we can not see clearly because of the suffering. The Lord wants to get your focus off of the pain and hurt and onto Him. He will bring you through this suffering and afterwards you will from the heart give thanks, either in this life or in the life to come. Faith comes before feeling.

James 1:6 But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind.

However, the ultimate purpose of suffering is to make us like Jesus. We become like Jesus when we learn to obey Him. The pathway of obedience is suffering.

Hebrews 5:8 Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered.

The pathway of Christlikeness is obedience.

I Peter 2:21-24 For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps, who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth; and while being reviled, He did not revile in return; while suffering, He uttered no threats, but kept entrusting Himself to Him who judges righteously; and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed.

 

A Life with True Liberty

The Lord is the only One who can set us free. He sets us free from our guilt, our sin, our fears, our worries, our past, our bitterness, our doubts and whatever else we struggle with that keeps us captive. Jesus came to set the captive free. This is what was spoken of Jesus Christ 700 years before He was born of a virgin and came to live among men, to die for our sins and to be raised again. He died and lives again to set us free!!

Isaiah 61:1 The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, Because the Lord has anointed me To bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners;

This is the verse that Jesus spoke concerning Himself, which was prophesied in the Old Testament, by Isaiah.

Luke 4:18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor. He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives, And recovery of sight to the blind, To set free those who are oppressed,

True freedom begins on the inside. It is only when we have experienced the liberty that Jesus came to give us can He use us to help set others free.

I Peter 2:16 Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God.

It is the truth that sets us free. The Lord has called us to share His precious truths with others so that they can be set free.

John 8:32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.”

Has the Lord set you free in any area through His Word? Share that truth with others so that they too can be set free. His Word is truth.

John 17:17 Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth.

Only Jesus Christ can give life but He has called us to set others free by giving them His Word so that they will no longer be bound by the grave clothes of their past.

John 11:43,44  When He had said these things, He cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth.” The man who had died came forth, bound hand and foot with wrappings, and his face was wrapped around with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.”

Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead and then He turned to those who were with Him and told them to unbind him and set him free.

 

A Life that Has a Refuge

A refuge is a safe place. We all need a refuge. The Lord has a refuge for the Christian lady where she will always be safe. It is very important for a young lady to understand this truth. The Bible says that the Lord keeps us and the devil can not touch us.

I John 5:18 He who was born of God keeps him, and the evil one does not touch him.

If a young Christian lady is any danger it is very important that she runs to the Lord. She must speak the name of Jesus Christ in her situation. People have to block out God in order to do evil.

Proverbs 18:10 The name of the Lord is a strong tower; The righteous runs into it and is safe.

Pour out your heart to the Lord. He will come to you. Seek refuge in Him.

Psalm 62:8 Trust in Him at all times, O people; Pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us.

He will be a shield to all who take refuge in Him. Don’t go where you should not go but if you find yourself being attacked in your thought life or by the accusations of others then go to the Lord and call on His name. He will help you and be a shield for you to extinguish the fiery darts of the evil one. If you are in physical danger He will be a shield for you. Nothing can touch you unless it first comes through Him.

Psalm 37:40 The Lord helps them and delivers them; He delivers them from the wicked and saves them, Because they take refuge in Him.

He is a very present help in trouble.

Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.

There are many verses in the Bible about the Lord being a refuge for the Christian. However, unless we believe them they do not help us.

Hebrews 4:2 For indeed we have had good news preached to us, just as they also; but the word they heard did not profit them, because it was not united by faith in those who heard.

If we take His Word and believe what He says then we will possess His promises. They will become ours and we will have faith, hope and courage.

Hebrews 6:18 so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have taken refuge would have strong encouragement to take hold of the hope set before us.

The book of Hebrews was written to the Christians whose homes had been taken from them and they had to flee Rome during the times of the early church. They were able to persevere under very trying circumstances only because they put their hope in Him.

James 1:12 Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.

We are not to shrink back in the day of trial but we are to take refuge in Him and persevere so that we shall not be ashamed. It is the little trials that prepare us for the bigger trials. The Lord is a present help in time of trouble but you must call on Him.

Hebrews 10:37-39 For yet in a very little while,
He who is coming will come, and will not delay.
But My righteous one shall live by faith;
And if he shrinks back, My soul has no pleasure in him.

But we are not of those who shrink back to destruction, but of those who have faith to the preserving of the soul.

Faith is taking refuge in Him and believing what He says is true. When our faith is strong then our courage is strong and we are able to persevere. Discouragement means that we have lost our courage. The Lord says to be strong and courageous. He is coming again and His reward is with Him and for all who were faithful.

 

A Life of Generosity and Joy

Generosity and joy go hand and hand. The Lord Himself said that it is more blessed to give than to receive. Giving gets your eyes off of yourself and your interests and needs and causes you to become aware of the needs of others around you. The ore yo give, the more your cup of joy will overflow.

Acts20:35 In everything I showed you that by working hard in this manner you must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”

Giving gives you a heart for the Lord, for where your treasure is there will your heat be also. Your heart will follow your treasure. Time and money are two of your treasures that you can give away.

Matthew 6:21 for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

The generous person will be prosperous or successful.

Proverbs 11:25 The generous man will be prosperous,

Give to those who can not pay you back. The Lord says that even sinners give to those from whom they will receive something back. When you give to the needy of His people you are giving to the Lord.

Matthew 25:35-40  For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’ Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ The King will answer and say to them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’

The person who gives to the rich will come to poverty. Give to a person in need and they will give you their heart.  When you meet the need of the needy then you are removing the obstacle in their life so that they can hear the Gospel. You are allowing them to see the love and truth of God so that they can hear the love and truth of the Lord.

Proverbs 22:16 He who oppresses the poor to make more for himself Or who gives to the rich, will only come to poverty.

Give to the poor and the Lord says that He Himself will pay you back. It is the only time in Scripture where the Lord says that He will become man’s debtor. His payment is in full and more. He remains no man’s debtor.

Proverbs 19:17 One who is gracious to a poor man lends to the Lord,  And He will repay him for his good deed.

Give to those who have helped you spiritually.

Galatians 6:6 The one who is taught the word is to share all good things with the one who teaches him.

Your cup of joy will overflow as you give to the Lord by giving to His people, the needy and to reach others for Christ.

Luke 6:38 Give, and it will be given to you. They will pour into your lap a good measure—pressed down, shaken together, and running over. For by your standard of measure it will be measured to you in return.”

A Life of a Mature Young Lady

How do you know when young men or young women are mature? What is God’s picture of maturity? When a young person is mature then they are ready for responsibility and with responsibility comes privileges.

Psalm 144:12 Let our sons in their youth be as grown-up plants, and our daughters as corner pillars fashioned as for a palace;

Young men need to learn to work and be productive and are not considered mature men until they can produce as a grown up plant and not have to be dependent on others. In the same way young ladies must learn to stand alone as corner pillars and not have to lean on other people to help them have convictions and keep them out of trouble. The corner pillars are what support the building. When a young lady is mature she will be a support to others but she herself will not have to lean on others.

Jeremiah 15:19 …”Before Me you will stand; and if you extract the precious from the worthless, you will become My spokesman. They for their part may turn to you, but as for you, you must not turn to them.”

As you stand before Him and do His work by restoring the image of God by sharing Christ’s love with others, then you will become His spokesman. They may look to you but you must look to the Lord. This is the picture of a mature young lady…one who looks to the Lord and is able to stand alone.

I Timothy 3:15 …the church of the living God, the pillar and support of the truth.”

Not only will you be mature but you will also be ready for marriage if the Lord should choose that for you, for the wife is to be a picture of the church, which is the pillar and support of the truth.

 

A Life that is Not Disappointed

The Master Builder says that you will not be disappointed if you build your life on His design and according to His instructions.

Romans 10:11 For the Scripture says, “WHOEVER BELIEVES IN HIM WILL NOT BE DISAPPOINTED.”

Believing means that you are trusting Him to be your Lord and will follow His instructions exactly how to build your life. Not only that, but you will let Him be the builder and allow Him to build your life and make the choices. The opposite of allowing Him to be the builder is believing that you know what is best for your life and that you need to make the decisions…such as, who you will marry, where you will live etc. Lordship means that He is Lord of your life and you are to follow and obey Him. His promise is…”you will not be disappointed”. He is the only One who can make this promise and keep it. No human can ever love you the same way.

Isaiah 64:5 You meet him who rejoices in doing righteousness, who remembers You in Your ways.

The Lord meets the one who wants to do life right, that is, according to His ways. He will help the one who wants to build their life on His Word. He will come to you and help you learn to obey Him and follow His instructions and His commandments.

Isaiah 32:17 And the work of righteousness will be peace, And the service of righteousness, quietness and confidence forever.

The outcome of doing life God’s way and building your life on His Word is that you will not be disappointed and you will have a life of peace, quietness and confidence. If you don’t do it God’s way then you will be disappointed and will be tempted to be bitter and envious of others and there will be NO peace, quietness and confidence. You will have doubts and regrets.

A Life that Stands Strong

Building your life is like building a house. If it is done right then it will stand when the storms come. However, it is too late to build your life during the storms, it must be done during the sunshiney days. You will be secure and will not be fearful if you build it with the right foundation and the right materials.

Proverbs 14:1 “A wise woman builds her house but a foolish woman tears it down with her own hands.”

The wise woman builds her life on the Word of God so she will be ready when the storms come. She will gain wisdom through the trials to strengthen her life so that she will not  be anxious or depressed over the outcome. Neither will she be boastful for she understands that there is a Master Builder who has a design and a plan and He does not make mistakes.

I Corinthians 3:11 “For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.”
Jesus Christ is the only foundation for any life that stands strong. Everything else will ultimately fail. A life must be built upon His Word, for He and His Word are equal.

Luke 6:47-49 “Everyone who comes to Me and hears My words and act on them, I will show you whom he is like: he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid a foundation on the rock; and when a flood occurred, the torrent burst against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built But the one who has heard and has not acted accordingly, is like a man who built a house on the ground without any foundation; an the torrent burst against it and immediately it collapsed, and the ruin of that house was great.”

If you will do exactly as the Master Builder and One who made you has instructed you, then your life will be firmly rooted and will stand strong when the storms come. You will not panic because you acted wisely. He will build your house through you.

Psalm 127:1 “Unless the Lord builds the house they labor in vain who build it…”

 

A Life Under His Wings

Every young lady wants her dreams to come true, to become the person that she longs to be,to live life to the fullest and to feel safe and secure. So how do you run the race of life…so that you can be free of guilt, free of regrets, free of bondage, free of bitterness, free of depression, free of envy,  free of self pity and live the abundant life, that is, life to the fullest? Is it possible? Yes, it is very much possible and is a gift that has been promised to us. The first step needs to be taken before you will ever know life to the fullest. You need to receive the One who gives this life so that you can live securely under His love, care and protection.

Psalm 91:4 “He will cover you with His pinions, And under His wings you may seek refuge. His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.”

You alone will either experience this life with great joy and gladness or your life will have the greatest of heartaches and sorrow. Wisdom is making the right choices so that you can have the desired outcome.

Proverbs 9:12 If you are wise, you are wise for yourself, And if you scoff, you alone bear it.

Wisdom is the right application of knowledge and scoffing is turning your back on knowledge. Joy and gladness is the outcome of making the right choice and heartache and sorrow comes from making the wrong decisions in life. If you act wisely then you will be glad but if you scoff you will regret it. He came that you might have life and live it to the fullest.

John 10:10 I came that they may have life and may have it abundantly.

The wisest decision you can ever make is to give your heart completely to the One who made it and knows you better than anyone else ever will and who loves you perfectly. Not only does He love you but He is looking for people that He may strongly support. The opposite of choosing to give your heart to Him is to act foolishly and feel like you know what is best for your life. If, you do not choose Him then you will have drama and friction with others. It usually begins in your family with those whom you love the most and who love you.

II Chronicles 16:9 For the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His. You have acted foolish in this. Indeed, from now on you will surely have wars.

His love is the only perfect love.

I John 4:18 There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love.

You can trust Him completely because He loves you perfectly. When you give your heart to Him, He takes all of your fears and He also took your punishment for everything you have ever done so you do not need to fear giving your heart to Him. When you give your heart to Him, you also give your sins, your guilt, your failures, your regrets, your longings, your hopes and your dreams. He takes the punishment that you deserve and gives you a life that you do not deserve. It is a gift from Him to all who will trust Him completely. You must receive the gift of becoming His child, a child of God.

John 1:12,13 “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, 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.”

Receiving Jesus Christ to be your Lord and Savior means that God, the Father becomes your Heavenly Father and He gives you His Spirit. He also calls you His Friend and He says that He will never leave you nor forsake you. Receiving Him means that you are asking Him to rule in your life and that you will follow Him. He who made you will only lead you in a way that is good for you. He is good and loved you perfectly. He says that those who follow Him will hear His voice because He also becomes their “Good Shepherd”, who laid down His life for them. This is the first step to knowing Him, to seeing Him and to hearing Him.