Food for thought

THINK IT OVER… You may have suffered a hurt or offense in the past that harmed you terribly. In fact, it may have even robbed you of something that can never be returned or restored. But if you refuse to forgive — if you refuse to let go of anger, animosity, and bitterness — that offense will continue to work its destruction in your life. A past-tense problem will become a present-tense issue if you refuse to let go of your bitterness. As the bishop of your own heart, you are the only one who has the authority to rip the root of bitterness and offense out of your heart. If you don’t get over that past offense, you will give it the power to damage and even destroy your future as you drag it along like a bag of garbage or toxic waste. At some point, you have to just let it go and get over the offense for your own benefit. — RICK RENNER
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Are you a Soldier in the Army of the Lord?

II Timothy 2:3-4 Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier.
When enlisted into any branch of service, a good soldier has to let go of civilian life and lay his life down for the cause at hand.

As a soldier in God’s Army we must learn to lay our life down, pick up our cross and follow Jesus.  We are to turn our backs on the ways of the world and bring the flesh under control of the Spirit. A good soldier fights with one another against the enemy, not against each other.  Many of God’s soldiers are fighting on the enemy’s side and are not even aware of what they are doing. When we hold bitterness, resentment, unforgiveness and strife in our hearts we are fighting on the enemy’s side.  Satan has blinded eyes of “believers” and they don’t know who the real enemy is. The Bible tells us that we don’t fight flesh and blood.  Ephesians 6:12.

The enemy has set land mines and God’s soldiers are walking right into them, falling into his traps.  The battleground is our minds and if he can fill our thought life with lies, we will become a walking explosion.
II Corinthians 10:3-4 Tells us that our weapons are not physical weapons of flesh and blood, but are mighty before God for the overthrow of destruction of strongholds.
A stronghold is something that has a strong hold on you. Its a way of thinking. A stronghold is a wall. You won’t allow anyone in and you are not free to get out. Addictions and habits are strongholds.

Ps. 68:1 Let God arise and His enemies be scattered.  Anything that kills, steals and destroys our lives are enemies of God.

We must ask ourselves this question.  Whose side am I on? Am I fighting in God’s Army.  Am I standing for what is right or have I changed Commanders in Chief. Whose orders am I following?  If Jesus is really your Commander in Chief, you will follow His commands.  What He says in the manual  (Bible) you will follow

Ask yourself this question. Am I a MIA or a POW?  Am I missing in action, no where to be found. Have I become a prisoner of war?  Is satan holding me captives?
As you read this article, I believe there are those who will return to camp. Many will pick up there weapons and begin to fight the good fight of faith.  Some have been running with the enemy and we can’t tell whose side you are on.    But NO MORE.
Pick up your marching orders (Matthew 28:18-20 and Mark 16:15-20) and together we will stand and defeat the enemy.

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Mounting up as Wings of Eagles

I recently taught this at a church in Knoxville, Tn. and I felt there maybe someone who needed this encouragement.

Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? Or who shall stand in His Holy Place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart.
Ps. 24
There are times in an eagles life when he goes to the mountaintop to be renewed. He beats his beak on the rocks and  he also plucks his old feathers out.
He stays there until he grows new feathers and his beak is sharpen. Now he ready to live between 30-40 more years.  Amazing isn’t it.

We have been called to the mountaintop to meet with God. To be re sharpen and to shake off anything that is hindering our flight in this life.  God wants us
to soar like the eagles.

Ps. 91:1-4  Are you living under God wings of protection, or are you beating the wind trying to do life on your own. His wings of protection is His Word.
That’s our secret place, or our hiding place. No matter what comes against us, we can be sheltered in by His Wings. The storms of life may rage, but as
long as we stay under His protection, no harm can come near our dwelling. Our cry should be to God like David said in Ps. 17:8 ” Keep and guard me
as the pupil of your eye: hide me in the shadow of your wings.
When we are doing verse 1 of Ps. 91, then and only then can we say of the Lord, “He is my refugee and my fortress, my God in whom I trust.”
The Word instructs us to acknowledge Him in all our ways and He shall direct our paths. God has a way of maneuvering us through the
winds of adversity, right into a bright path.
Its time to soar. We can’t soar if we are always caught up at looking at what’s going on around us. That’s a web of deception to keep our focus
on the problem and not on the Answer.
Is. 40:28-31  Too long some stayed in the comfort of their nest. Many have let someone feed them-just like a baby bird–your mouth
has been opened and someone comes by and drops food or the Word into your mouth—Now is the time to take what you have eaten and give
it to someone else.  Step out of your comfort zone.
For some you have let circumstances clip your wings. You have allowed what others think of you cripple your journey. You are more aware of
what the crows  have said than what God has declared over you. Maybe you have been wounded by birds of prey. They are there to stop you from
flying high to get to where God wants to take you.  Stop allowing others to cause you to set on the fence row and wish you could be used by God.

A word of warning—-Stop gathering with the pigeons. Eagles don’t mingle with the pigeons.  Pigeons gather in flocks to scramble for food. You can hear the sound
of a flock of pigeons, sounds like a lot of mourning and complaining. Then as someone shared with me, they go and ” dump” on things.  All of you know what
that means, I don’t have to go into detail.  Too many times we let people dump their frustrations and their gossip onto our lives.  Then we have to go through a
process of cleaning it off of us.
An eagle is very different. They don’t gather with the pigeons, they are too busy soaring through the storms or gliding as they look for prey. They move swiftly
and quietly.   I’m reminded of how Jesus would walk through the crowds sometimes not even noticed. Lots of people could use His example.  You don’t have to
be seen to be noticed. Remember birds fly in flocks but eagles fly alone.

Have you given up inside, have you accepted the circumstances that are going on around you. an eagle will never surrender to the size or strength of a prey.
It will always give a fight to win its prey or to regain his territory.  Get back up and begin to take back what the enemy has stolen.  Mount back up, spread
your wings and begin to fly.

Storms will come, but an eagle flies right into it. Taking it head on. Not folding up or running from it. Be not afraid, “Only believe”.

We have all been called to be eagles because God is no respecter of persons. We just have different flight patterns. Let God navigate your flight.
and stay under His Wings.

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The Spirit of Offense

How many would agree with me that Jesus is coming soon.  The signs of the times is all around. The alarm is being sounded.
Yet there is
a spirit that is slivering through the Body of Christ and the venom is poison and many have swallowed it.
Its the spirit of OFFENSE.

Offense is a bait to steal your destiny. It steals your joy, your peace and relationships with others. It leads you into a trap
and builds a wall up
around you.  You no longer can be who God created you to be. You are being held captive.

Psalms 55: 12-13  Amplified Bible For it is not an enemy who reproaches and taunts me–then I might bear it: nor is it one
who hated me who
insolently vaunts himself against me–then I might hide from him. But it was you, a man my equal,
my companion and my familiar friend. We has
sweet fellowship together and used to walk to the house of God in company.

Sound familiar to anyone???  Satan desires to separate and divide. His main focus is on the people closest to you.
People you have spent time with,those who 
you thought was your dearest companions.  He knows there is strength in
numbers. Families united bring glory to God. Division is what
satan is all about.  Too many times we forget who the
real enemy is and we begin to come against one another.

Jesus said in Luke 17:1 ” It is impossible that no offense should come.”  As long as we are in this world there will be
opportunities to get offended, but
what will be your respond. Will you take it?  Will you sign for the package with
the venom in it.  The poison of offense shows up in many different ways.

We become bitter, not better, resentment sets in, hatred takes over and our heart becomes harden.  These things
lead to dis-ease in our physical well being.

One day we wake up and do not recognize the person we have become. Pride sets in and down the road to
destruction we go.

The Word says in I John 2:9 Whoever says he us in the Light and yet hates his brother (Christians), born again child
of God his Father is in darkness
even until now. Whoever loves his brother (believer) abides (lives) in the Light,
and in It or in Him there is no occasion for stumbling or cause for error or sin.
But he who hates (detests, despises) his brother (in Christ) is in darkness and walking (living) in the dark; he is
straying and does not perceive or know
where he is going, because the darkness has blinded hm.

II Timothy 2: 24-26 And the servant of the Lord must not be quarrelsome (fighting and contending). Instead, he
must be kindly to everyone and mild tempered
(preserving the bond of peace) he must be skilled and a suitable teacher,
patient and forbearing and willing to suffer wrong. He must correct his opponents with
courtesy and gentleness,
in the hope that God may grant that they will repent and come to know the Truth (that they will perceive and
recognize and become
accurately acquainted with and acknowledge it) and that they may come to their senses and
escape out of the snare of the devil, having been held captive by him,
(henceforth) to do His (God’s ) will.

Lets expose the enemy, turn the tables on him. “Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord and He will lift you
up.” Do we really believe God is our justifier, or do we
think we have to tell our side of the story.
Love covers a multitude of sins.  

Let me finish with this passage in Rev. 3:18-20  Therefore I counsel you to purchase from ME, gold refined and
tested by fire, that you may be (truly)
wealthly, and white clothes to clothe your nudity from being seen and salve
to put on your eyes, that you may see. Those whom I dearly and tenderly love, I
tell their faults and convict and
convince and reprove and chasten ( I disciple and instruct them. So be enthusiastic and in earnest and burning with
zeal and
repent (changing your mind and attitude). Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if anyone hears and
listens to and heeds My voice and opens the door, I will come in and will eat with him, and He will eat with ME.

Notice its up to us to listen and heed and open the door to our hearts.

I believe God is knocking on so many hearts to get things right with Him and with our fellow man.   No more
excuses and no more blame games.  Soon and very soon we will stand before Him and give account of
what we have done with Jesus.  Will HE say, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”

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The Strong Man

1 Peter 3:4
” But the hidden man of the heart is the incorruptible adornment of a meek and quiet spirit which is very costly in the sight of God.” It cost the life of God’s Son.

The hidden man is the you that is in you that will put you over in life.  Inside of each of us God put a will. That “will” becomes the strong man.  By a choice we will to go one way or another.
Whatever we yield our will to will eventually become our master. God’s will for our life is to conformed to the image of His dear Son.  Romans 8:29

God gave us a will, He did not make us robots. HE created  man to think for himself.  His perfect plan for mankind was to choose to follow after HIM.  Romans 12:2  There is a good, acceptable and perfect will of God.
Our highest level of spiritual maturity is the ‘perfect:” will of God.  That happens when our will is  conformed to His will. When Jesus was facing the cross, He knew what was going to happen to Him. He, being human cried out to God, ” Father, if  You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but (always) your will be done.  Luke 22:42 Amplified Bible.
He submitted His will to the will of the Father God.
On the flip side, we all know what happened in the Garden of Eden. God expressed His will to Adam.  Genesis 2: 16-17  And the Lord God commanded the man, saying, ” You may freely eat of every tree of the garden, But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil and blessing and cursing you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat of it, you shall surely die.”  But when faced with a choice, Adam went against God’s will and allowed  the man on the inside to bow down  to an outside force. He could have chosen to obey  God just as easy as he chose to disobey. God lets us decide our destiny. Spiritual death is a slow thing. It took Adam 930 years to die.  Separation from God comes little by little. One choice leads to another choice. The end is destruction.
Sin pays a wage. Payday will come.

The will of man is a powerful thing. Paul said in Romans 7: 15 For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that I do. If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) dwelleth no good thing, for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. I find then a law that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. For I delight in the law of God after the inner man. But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin, which is in  my members.
O wretched man that I am, who shall deliver me from the body of this death?  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.

The enemy of our soul seeks ways to bind the strong man inside of us.  He attacks our emotions to play with our minds and the end result is to break our will.  When this happens you are no longer in control of your own life. Now he has a stronghold in your mind.  You become a puppet to people and situations.  Someone else is in control of your life. The choice was the wrong tree.  Which lead to paying the consequences.  When we know to do good, and don’t do it,its sin.  The choice has been made by your will to go the way of the flesh (what pleases you instead of what pleases the Father).   All the time, the real us is crying out to lead us in the way of righteousness.  Too often the Word (God’s Will ) is twisted to fit our agenda.

Can we be like Jesus?  When opportunities come up that comes against our flesh, will we make the choice to let the Strong Man arise and follow after the things that please the Father God, or will we continue to choose to let an outside force lead our lives and end up paying the consequences. 
Thank God for the Blood of Jesus, His mercy and His grace will give us the Victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  He has given us the ability to allow the Strong Man to stand up and do what is right, just because its the right thing to do.

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