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Christian and Socially-Conscious…One Woman's Expression

Archive for the tag “Christian”

Love In Action

What is your motivation when you help another, when you do a good thing, when you serve?

duck-looking-around

In Joppa there was a disciple named Tabitha (which, when translated, is Dorcas), who was always doing good and helping the poor.  Acts 9:36

On the surface, who does not want to always do good and help the poor?  I mean, it sounds like the correct thing to think and say right?  To say otherwise seems too pompous, too raw, too real.  Let’s face it—we are too polite for that, aren’t we?

Kevin Hart It's About To Go Down

As a result, people say what you want to hear and do what they want to do without considering that the two never meet.  Yes, even those who profess Christianity are susceptible to this.

faith

There are, however, those who have spiritual gifts of kindness.  They are not simply doing good works and helping those in need because they are nice people.  They are not doing it for self-gain.  They do it because they have been divinely created to minister in this way.  Have you ever taken a moment to meditate on the power of such awareness?  These people are truly special.  Their impact is inspiring.

woman-helping

I am challenging myself to become more aware of these people in my life.  I know that I need to identify and appreciate them while they are alive.  The examples, lessons, and insights they illustrate through the alignment of their words and actions are treasures.  The positive impact that they have on individuals and communities is far-stretching.  They represent so much love in a world where hate makes common headlines.  We need to see love in action.  I need to see more of this.  Don’t you?

Rest

A Prophet’s Question

Have you ever wondered if you have rejected a message from God because it was delivered by a person you have dismissed as being too righteous, or too holy, or too plain, or too strange, or too this or too that?

“You stiff-necked people, with uncircumcised hearts and ears!  You are just like your fathers: You always resist the Holy Spirit!  Was there ever a prophet your fathers did not persecute?  They even killed those who predicted the coming of the Righteous One.  And now you have betrayed and murdered him — you who have received the law that was put into effect through angels but have not obeyed it.”  —Acts 7:51-53

A few years ago, I was having a conversation with a wise man in which he said, “People always reject prophets.”

say-wha

He does not know it, but periodically I think deeply about his words.  He motivated me to study the prophets in the Bible and the situations surrounding their rejection.  I learned why Jeremiah is sometimes referred to as the “Weeping Prophet”.  Empathy will make your cries gut-wrenching and ironically silent at the same time.

jw

It makes me uneasy to think that there may have been times when I have rejected, or will reject, a Word delivered to me by a prophet.  Do you wonder about this?  Were there times when you believe you had a God-inspired Word that was rejected by people, by fellow Christians?  Where do people talk about this?  I once heard the saying, “It is tough to be friends with a true prophet.”  It may be, but a true prophet will lead you right.  Now, that is my REAL question, to both myself and to you, “Don’t you want to be led right?”  Yes, I do!

Rest

 

Merry Christmas….

merry-christmas-bw-chrome

Crippled Beggar?

Are you a crippled beggar?  No really, are you spiritually depleted, but boldly asking for help?  Do you feel defeated, tired, weary, and have accepted living less than your potential?  Has it become routine and you now only focus on surviving: second-by-second, minute-by-minute, day-by-day?  Is this you?  Have you been there?

Women Thinking

Would you take the hand of a stranger, if offered, and allow life to enter your soul?  Can you see yourself victorious, happy, excited about everything because everything is new?  Would you embrace your new position, rejoice and praise God for your healing?  Do you believe God can heal you?  Listen, He healed me!

It's Handled

By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong.  It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has given the complete healing to him, as you can all see. —Acts 3:16

A crippled beggar is noted, even by those attempting to avert eye contact.  Some will attempt to help by meeting physical needs.  If asked for a dollar, a dollar may be received.  If asked to be carried, being carried may result (at least for a while).  A beggar’s initial pain of rejection fades away, outweighed by the need to survive:  second-by-second, minute-by-minute, day-by-day.  Through it all, do not give up hope!  Hold on to your faith, even if it is the size of a mustard seed!  God has a miraculous way of sending divine remedies in ways you least expect, from people you least expect.   Accept it!  Then, go forth exemplifying the living testament of which you are.  You have been healed…completely!

Woman Standing On Rock

Wicked People

There was a time when I thought all people were good people.  Then I thought, some people were troubled.  Now I understand, there are those who are evil.  Sometimes, they wear sheep’s clothing.   Other times, they do not.  Beware!

duck-looking-around

This man [Jesus of Nazareth] was handed over to you by God’s set purpose and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross.  —Acts 2:23

It was not easy for me to accept the notion that wicked people exist.  If in a group, I would be the one trying to understand why one person would intentionally hurt another, why one person would intentionally be cruel to another, why one person would intentionally break the spirit of another—particularly when the two profess the same faith as I.

“How could this be,” I would think.

Rest

Where is the love?

I would search to identify the why, not the wicked.  [You will know them by their fruit, I have come to rely upon.]  Truth is, some are wicked.  They are not crazy.  They are not demented.  They are not touchedThey are evil.  It is spiritual and as my spiritual awareness heightens, so does my respect for the spiritual realm.

Maturity has allowed me to accept people for who they are—not how they are with me.  There is always a spiritual conversation occuring, even when not conscious to us.  Because of this, I constantly pray for discernment.

Woman Praying

Do not be deceived:  Wicked people will work with you when you are working for their purpose.  Such agreement may not be obvious to you (immediately, if ever).  Know your helpmates and their spiritual significance.  It is a matter of life or death.

 

Who Do You See?

If Jesus was standing before you, would you recognize Him?  Songs have been written about this and sermons have been preached, but do you regularly consider this question?  As Christians, shouldn’t we?

Lady Pointing at Herself

At this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not realize that it was Jesus. “Woman,” he said, “why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for?”  Thinking he was the gardener, she said, “Sir, if you have carried him away, tell me where you have put him, and I will get him.”  Jesus said, “Mary.”  She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, “Rabboni!” (which means Teacher).  John 20:14-16

Do you believe that God sends people to you and you to people?  I do.  Of course, not everyone who cross my path I believe is of God, but when I am aware of its occurrence I pay special attention.

Kevin Hart It's About To Go Down

I can’t help but to think about all of the prophets God sent before He sent His Son.  I think about how so many people, particularly people professing to believe in God, did not recognize them.  As a result, they were opposed to the message the prophets brought and to the work they did.  The people countered the God they said they served.  Isn’t that interesting?  What a scary thought!

Girl with Arms Crossed

Have you ever wondered if you have acted in opposition to someone God has sent?  Have you ever been that person who was sent?  Do you think such resistance is because people, particularly fellow Christians, do not recognize God in the situation before them?  Do you think people have stopped believing that God sends people to do divine assignments outside of sanctuaries?  Do you think they ever believed?

Rest

Like Mary Magdalene, there are times when I do not expect to see God, so I may need to take a second look.  Titles and suits, smiles and charisma can be misleading.  Following trend can leave you watching Noah and his family sailing away.  I am growing more conscious, however, about identifying who is standing before me.  I am listening to hear the voice–His voice of which I will know.  What about you?

Invisible Allies

One of the lessons I learned during my campaign run was to appreciate invisible allies.  I laugh about it now, as I reflect upon my growth in this area.  Truth is, not everyone who support you will cheer for you publicly, and not everyone who cheer for you publicly will care for you privately.

Ghost Scene

Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus.  Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jews.  With Pilate’s permission, he came and took the body away.  He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night.  Nicodemus brought a mixture of myrrh and aloes, about seventy-five pounds.  Taking Jesus’ body, the two of them wrapped it, with the spices, in strips of linen.  This was in accordance to Jewish custom.  John 19: 38-40

Who cares for you, for your soul, when no one else is looking?  Who do you care for; who do you pray for; who do you call, text, or email to sincerely encourage when an audience is not around?  Do you hold it against people if you do not see their support?  To you, I share what I had to become conscious about and am still maturing in:

  • Do not lose focus on God or on your divine assignment;
  • He is working in you and He is working in others;
  • Know that He will provide for you, even in times when you do not see or understand; and
  • Remain open to receiving love from people, even after you have left the scene.

Invisible allies are not your enemy.  If revealed, don’t treat them as such!

 

You Are Hated

Do you concede the notion that you are hated?  Seriously, have you ever settled yourself enough to acknowledge that you are detested, and then to understand why?  Have you ever fought to emerge pass the hurt and pain, the shock and self-doubt to maturely and boldly stand in your creation?  Have you ever made such awareness not about you, finding comfort in He which you reflect?

Women Thinking

If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own.  As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world.  This is why the world hates you.  —John 15:19

In sanctuaries, we valiantly profess our love for Christ.  That is always easy to do in environments where we think we are the majority.  Would you be so loud if you knew you were surrounded by wolves in sheep clothing?  Are you as brave when you are in the world?  Spirits recognize spirits, even when one does not do so consciously, no matter the conditions.

Have you ever shown up somewhere and people become uncomfortable?  Your mere presence causes a shift in the atmosphere—sometimes it is pleasant and other times you know to be on heighten alert.   Do not be deceived in thinking such changes are because you are well-liked or disliked.  It is spiritual.  Are you amongst your Family or have you found yourself in the midst of the clan of another?  Know your truth!  Spirits do.

Friends

For me, it became vital to understand the spiritual nature of hate.  Sometimes it is easy to identify.  Other times, it will masquerade as a friend or ally.  However it appears, it is a formidable opponent.  Love and hate cannot share the same space contently.  There is no compromise.  Life lives!  Are you living according to your faith and His purpose?  Sure, there may be times when you feel as if you are all alone.  Know that you are not.  There will be times when you will feel outnumbered.  Remember, Light shines upon darkness.  Do not become distracted by hate.  You have a purpose founded in love.  You have work to do, a work much bigger than you.  You have been chosen to stand out, to not surrender to hate, envy, or jealousy.  So YES, you are hated!!!  You are hated because you are different from that which the world purports.  Now that that is understood, carry on.

Me 12.30.15 talking to group

All this I have told you so that you will not go astray.  —John 16:1

 

Words Of Comfort

I had not noticed it until I picked up my Bible to prepare for my next blog entry—this blog entry….  I was to read, beginning at the 14th chapter of John.  Finding my placement, there it was:

Do not let your hearts be troubled.  Trust in God; trust also in me.  —John 14:1

Woman Reading Bible

These were the words which comforted me, just days ago, as I stared at them inside my cousin’s coffin.  No really, they soothed my soul.  You see, tears fell uncontrollably when I first saw my cousin’s lifeless body.  I had a hard time walking down the aisle at the funeral home only to sit in the front row at the Family Viewing.  The reality of not being greeted by her always welcoming smile and hospitality, wit and wisdom was setting in.  These were things I always received when visiting this Georgian city, one where my ancestors were instrumental in its development and discovery.  I guess I took for granted that this cousin would always be there.  Reality was setting in, however.  There is a season for all things.

Rest

So, there I sat—crying and staring, staring and crying.  Then, I noticed the words that were inscribed inside her coffin. I began to remember their meaning, Jesus’ instruction.  Knowing my cousin, I am confident that her soul is rejoicing.

Face

Yes, I will continue to miss her.  I will not be sad, however.  She would not want me to be unhappy.  Instead, I will be encouraged by her life and by the way in which she lived here on earth.  Her ability to touch hundreds, if not thousands, of lives across generations, professions, socio-economic brackets, and political affiliations is simply remarkable.  I did not know the extent of the reach of her assignment until her death, and through death I know she still lives.  My heart is not troubled.  Jesus promised then, and He reiterates it now as I note the timing of my preparation for this blog entry.  Words of Comfort.

Book Review: Goals…Set Them!

BACKDROP

I knew I needed to get a particular book, but I had no idea where or what it was.  What an odd feeling—knowing you are being nudged to read a book, but not knowing its title.  A couple of weeks passed, but it would not go away.  I knew I needed to be obedient, so [finally] off to the bookstore I went with two conspicuous ideas in mind:

  • an athlete’s mind and
  • setting goals.

Getting out of my car, I did not know if I should first visit the Sports section, the Self Help section, or the Adult Fiction section.  Maybe the book is in the Non-Fiction section or the New Release section?  Books are everywhere.  I could see them walking to the entrance, but when I opened the door and stepped inside the strangest thing happened.  I was instructed to go to the Christian Life section.  Off I went to find what I was looking for.

REVIEW

This morning I finished the book entitled, The Circle Maker.  See:   https://www.amazon.com/Circle-Maker-Praying-Circles-Greatest/dp/0310330734   What a timely read!  It had been pressed upon my spirit that I needed to pray more, so much so that I had begun mentioning it to people.  I am blessed to be surrounded by people who hear my cry.  One friend got so excited when I said this and soon after I discovered why.  She gave me a movie to watch.  YES….She gave me War Room.  Clearly, God wants me to tighten up my prayer life.

Woman Praying

War Room was recently added to my Movies To Watch list, but I had not gotten around to viewing it.  [Can’t help but think that maybe that was by design too.]

The Circle Maker, inspired me to start a prayer journal, one that is devoted to prayer and goal setting.  Within a week I jotted down, what turned out to be, two answered prayers.  Now, I know that more than two prayers were answered during the week but these were two which resulted from specific prayers I prayed.

If you want to grow in your prayer life, I would highly recommend reading this book.  I liked it because it is not “preachy”, yet it gives tools which encourage you to PRAY BIGGER.  By the end, I knew I was not praying BIG enough.  [After all, God can do all things!]  The realization that I had not been praying BIG enough sadden me just a little.  More so, however, I was excited for my future because I knew I was about to make some changes.  Memories of past visions were triggered.  Images that God showed me in dreams and confirmations I received were surfacing.  I know now, however, that prayer is essential and praying with others is important.

Some people have the spiritual gift of intercession.  I am not aware that I am one of those people, so reading this book is a blessing and verification that the time has come to seriously focus on my assignment.  There is work to be done and settling is not an option.

I won’t share (all) the tools that Pastor Batterson gave as I would encourage you to buy and read the book, but when thinking about how the Holy Spirit led me to this book and ministered to me while reading it I cannot help but wonder if it was because of someone else’s circle.

Note:  This book makes a great group read.

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