Matthew 7:20 NKJV Therefore by their fruits you will know them.
In Matthew 7:15-21 the writer gives advice on how to recognize false prophets. He shares a simple analogy of fruit bearing trees. Each seed planted will produce a harvest. If you sow good seed, you reap a good harvest. If you sow bad seed, well you will reap a bad harvest.
In verses 17-18 the writer says, …every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.
I just want to make two points and I’m done:
1. Be patient and pay attention.
We are a generation of fast action, we want everything right now and that’s how life is set up for us. We hate waiting for anything! We are impatient; therefore our desire to let trees grow and produce fruit is slim to none.
We get into relationships with people (romantic or not) and we let them take root with their perfected words and their practiced actions that have taken them far with others and we make long-term decisions based off of short-term observations. We’ve yet to learn to give them time to produce fruit. We’ve yet to learn to go to God and ask for His
“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, Because the Lord has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound; 2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn, 3 to console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.”
The other day I was led back to this Scripture and it gives me life every time I read it. I want to share a few of the things that poured out on paper after reading it! I pray that it will encourage you!
We need your comfort in this season, a season where we are all walking in unknown territory. We see that you have enlarged all of our spheres of influence without us even recognizing it. And with this shift we see things changing: people changing, legislation changing and if I could be honest our flesh is getting in the way because as these things shift they don’t always feel good. It causes us to feel uncomfortable, saddened, and heavy. Our flesh begins to mourn leaving many stunted and blocked while others are pressing with everything they have to continue forward.
As we experience the physical losses of loved ones, we mourn. The breaking off of relationships we thought would last forever, we mourn. The loss of jobs and financial stability, we mourn. The feelings of helplessness that we face due to hatred that consumes this country, we mourn.
But the word says that our God has the ability to comfort and console all those who mourn. That He is able to exchange beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the Spirit of heaviness!!!
My God, He comes to heal the brokenhearted, give peace and clarity to the confused mind, heal those sick in spirit, and contain and revive those whose emotions in the flesh are overwhelming and debilitating.
So in those seasons…In these seasons we don’t quite understand, where change can be painful, confusing, and uncomfortable we must trust the God that can see all things, be all things, provide all things, change all things, and who can do all things!
Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?” John 11:40 NKJV
These were the words Jesus spoke to Martha before He raised her brother Lazarus from the dead!
If we would just believe, we would have an opportunity to see God's glory manifested in us, through us, and around us! If we believe that God is everything His word says He is, a healer, mind regulator, a Father and so much more, then we have put ourselves in position to experience His glory manifested in healing, peace of mind, and the ability to rest in Our Father's love.
If we would believe that He could indeed meet each of our various needs we would see the glory of God like never before.
If you want to experience the glory of God then you must BELIEVE!
Are you picking up what I'm putting down? :)
Your faith will indeed make you whole! Walk in a mindset of expectation today and watch what God does!
As we close out the week on this topic of consecration and me removing many of my distractions, namely social networks, I’ve come to one major conclusion. I waste so much time. Oh my God, I waste so much time. I am also a pro at filling the time I gained from removing one distraction with something equally distracting. For instance, clearing out the DVR after watching almost everything on it.
Time management has always been a challenge of mine. I was that college/graduate student who was accustomed to all nighters to start and finish 25 page papers and huge projects. I know I’m not alone but I also know this isn’t what God wants for us, for me.
Focusing on the distractions keeping me from devoting my time to God and to my work was actually a really cool thing to do. I have soooo many things that I do that are a complete waste of time. What doesn’t help is that even though I have plenty of brothers and sisters I learned early how to keep myself entertained as if I was an only child.
Have you taken time to set yourself apart and get in God’s presence today? This week we have been focusing on consecrating ourselves and devoting ourselves to God. And the more I focused on it the more I felt the need to get in His presence. But like I talked about earlier this week, the more I desired His presence the quicker distractions popped up to get me thinking about something else.
I just wanted to encourage you to make time today! Setting yourself apart for God’s use does not always have to take an hour of prayer, hour of meditation, hour of scripture and study time. (If that’s what He has led you to do, do it lol). But it can be something as simple as:
• Asking Him to show you how you can minister to someone on that day, meditating on the way He has equipped you to do so and thanking God for the opportunity in advance.
• Reading scripture that morning and applying it to your life.
• Listening to a song and meditating on how those words minister to you and how it can put you in better position to acknowledge God on these days
We all have busy schedules but I encourage you to take some time out of it to thank Him for the things that fill them up and that He has strengthened you to complete all that’s on them. You can do this verbally but also by just spending time with Him.
Enjoy Him on today! Make time to rest in Him a while! Happy Friday!
And he said to them, “Come aside by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.” For there were many coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat. So they departed to a deserted place in the boat by themselves. Mark 6:31-32
Have you ever let someone borrow something? It’s usually not difficult at all for the borrower to get to you in order to make the acquisition. However when it is time to repay they want you to travel across two oceans, three states, and knit them a sweater out of rabbit fur before you walk to their house to get what they owe YOU.
I'm thinking, God may be feeling the same way as the lenders. We bargain and promise Him we'll pray more, read more, share more, and even go to church if He could only...(Fill in the blank). God answers our prayers and here we go with excuses as to why we can't follow though with our end of the bargain. The bible says it is better not to vow than to vow and not pay. (Ecclesiastes 5:5)
Let's treat God better. For one…praying, reading, sharing, and going to church is something He asks us to do consistently regardless. Not something we should use as leverage. No more bargaining, just do your part, He always does His!
Are you getting serious? Well expect the unexpected. As we take a more active role in improving our relationship with Christ we may be happy but the enemy isn't. One thing I notice is I always get calls from the same person or group, thoughts that are distracting bombard my mental, and I'm invited tons of places I know I shouldn't go. Then there are things that come up that normally anger or depress me. I have learned to recognize this pretty quickly especially if it is happening when I've chosen to get back on my game.
This is when we remind ourselves that Satan's job is to steal, kill, and destroy and keep us from fulfilling our missions. When things start acting up and you know you are doing everything right just remember, you are doing something right lol.
Stay encouraged and continue digging into that word. Recognize the distractions and attacks for what they are and praise God anyhow. He's got something good for you on the other side!
John 10:10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
Every morning we wake up and choose what we are going to do. Is spending time with God one of those choices? Often times we force God to vie for our attention and time. All of the blessings He gives us end up taking His place and pushing Him out of the picture. We stay on computers, tablets, and phones all night but we won't read the word. We get home from work and claim we are too tired to pray but we choose to unwind by watching television or going out to dinner with friends. Those things are perfectly okay to do unless they are moving God from His rightful place as "first choice".
During times like these we are susceptible to attacks and tricks of the enemy. Then in our chaotic mindset we expect to hear clearly from God. Eh, it doesn't usually work out as smoothly as we desire. We all want to be prepared for these attacks and believe me, we can be if we make the conscious decision to spend time with Him daily. Today and the rest of the week I challenge you to spend time with God by choice! Chase after Him for a change =)
Psalm 1:2 But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night.
Consecrate—To set apart or devote to God
A lot of people hear the word consecrate and shy away from it because they feel like it’s something too holy for us to be apart of and that it’s too hard to do. Truth is we do it everyday for various activities. Want some examples? Ok!
1) Getting pumped up for a sports event. In the locker room people put on their earphones and get in a zone.
2) Same thing happens during a workout. You have that one special work out playlist that makes running those 3 miles that much easier.
3) When we have a big test we get by ourselves or with a small group and devote that time to our studies.
God is asking for the same thing! Carving out moments of our day everyday dedicated to him and him alone. This can look like reading scripture and sitting and meditating or it could be shutting down an entire weekend to focus on him and being led in the direction he desires for us. Time set apart is not to make us feel lonely or miss out on things but to set us up for what we are to face in the next moment or coming days in our lives.
Consecration does not only apply to people going forth in ministry on Sunday mornings so this week I encourage you to set apart some time out of your day and devote it to God. If you already do this, yay awesome! Keep it up!
This blog is adapted from a blog written July 2013. I’m hoping that it helps someone who is feeling stuck and doesn’t know how to move forward! We’ve all been there in our personal walks and if we are being honest have been there more than once! Be encouraged! Jesus loves you and like Philippians 1:6 states, He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ! God bless you =)
Earlier this week I woke up with the words “premature movement” in my spirit. I automatically thought about a journal entry I wrote back in December of 2011 and figured it was time to share it with all of you. For four days I went back and forth about this and realized that maybe this was just a word that I need to go over for myself.
You see I am in an odd season of my life. This holding place where I am uncertain of what I should do in several areas
Melanie N. Lee
I just REALLY love Jesus!!!
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