There will be times of pruning in our lives. Times after Harvest, where God will till the fields of our lives. He is a Good Father, and wants to help us produce more fruit, more wine.
“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. For by it the elders obtained a good testimony.
By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible.” – Hebrews 12:1-2 NKJV
I guess this is the season where I get to use that Faith Muscle. Not sure I like it. Next month it will be a year since I have been out of work. It definitely is not what I had planned. I was happy working my way up the ladder of Corporate America when BAM, life took a left turn I didn’t expect.
So, here I sit a year later. Last week I was granted Social Security Disability after my first attempt. People told me it would never happen, that I would have to go through at least 3 appeals, hire a lawyer, etc. They were wrong. I did use a service to help me with the paperwork. (If you need help, email me and I’ll send you a link).
Today I don’t know whether to laugh or cry. I never wanted to be labelled as Disabled.
Is God mad at me? No, not according to the book of Job. He lost a lot in one day. Did I do something to deserve this? Is it punishment? No, I don’t think God punishes us like that. Jesus took the wrath that we deserved at the Cross. “It is finished.” He said. Well then, I don’t need to carry that wrath.
But why? Isn’t it funny that we as humans always want to know why? Sometimes I remind myself of a toddler. Why Daddy why? As a Good Father, He has vision way beyond my meager view of the world. I guess in this season, I have learned to stop asking Why, and just trust and believe that My Daddy knows what He is doing. I may not know all the answers, but I think I’ll stop my whining at the checkout aisle and see what God has in store for me next!
The True Vine
“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser.Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit Hetakes away; and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bearmore fruit.You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.
“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears muchfruit; for without Me you can donothing.If anyone does not abide in Me,he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned.If you abide in Me, and My wordsabide in you,youwill ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit;so you will be My disciples. – John 15:1-6
I don’t know about you, but my heart hurts for the people in the midst of Hurricane Dorian. I live in the Midwest. I have never been in a hurricane. I can’t even imagine. But I can pray for all of the people impacted by Hurricane Dorian.
3 WAYS TO PRAY FOR THOSE IN HURRICANE DORIAN’S PATH
1. PRAYERS FOR PROTECTION
“The God of my strength, in whom I will trust; my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold and my refuge; my Savior, You save me from violence. I will call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised; so shall I be saved from my enemies.” – 2 Samuel 22:3-4
“Show Your marvelous lovingkindness by Your right hand, O You who save those who trust in You from those who rise up against them. Keep me as the apple of Your eye; hide me under the shadow of Your wings.” – Psalm 17:7-8
“The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears, and delivers them out of all their troubles. The LORD is near to those who have a broken heart, and saves such as have a contrite spirit.” – Psalm 34:17-18
“Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the LORD delivers him out of them all.” -Psalm 34:19
“Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive me; You will stretch out Your hand against the wrath of my enemies, and Your right hand will save me.” – Psalm 138:7
“We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed.” – 2 Corinthians 4:8-9
“The LORD is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; and He knows those who trust in Him.” – Nahum 1:7
“The LORD your God in your midst, the Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.” – Zephaniah 3:17
2. PRAYERS FOR PEACE
“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” John 14:27
“You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you.” Isaiah 26:3
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
“The Lord gives strength to his people, the Lord blesses his people with peace.” Psalm 29:11
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30
“Cast all your anxiety on Him because he cares for you.”1 Peter 5:7
3. PRAYERS FOR RESTORATION
“But they who wait for the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” – Isaiah 40:31
“You who have made me see many troubles and calamities will revive me again; from the depths of the earth you will bring me up again. You will increase my greatness and comfort me again.” Psalm 71:20-2
“And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.” 1 Peter 5:10
“Instead of your shame there shall be a double portion; instead of dishonor they shall rejoice in their lot; therefore in their land they shall possess a double portion; they shall have everlasting joy.” Isaiah 61:7
“Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.” Psalm 51:12
“And the LORD restored the fortunes of Job, when he had prayed for his friends. And the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before.” Job 42:10
“I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, the hopper, the destroyer, and the cutter, my great army, which I sent among you. You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the LORD your God, who has dealt wondrously with you. And my people shall never again be put to shame.” Joel 2:25-26
“For I will restore health to you, and your wounds I will heal, declares the LORD, because they have called you an outcast: ‘It is Zion, for whom no one cares!” Jeremiah 30:17
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. – Hebrews 12:1-2
And you will be hated by all for My name’s sake. But he who endures to the end will be saved. – Matthew 10:22
God, who “will render to each one according to his deeds”: eternal life to those who by patient continuance in doing good seek for glory, honor, and immortality; but to those who are self-seeking and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness—indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, on every soul of man who does evil, of the Jew first and also of the Greek; but glory, honor, and peace to everyone who works what is good, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For there is no partiality with God. – Romans 2 6-11
My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. – James 1:2-8
And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith. – Galatians 6:9-10
Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. James 1:12
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God. And not only that, but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us. – Romans 5: 1-5
Seek the Lord and His strength; Seek His face evermore! – 1 Chronicles 16:11
But recall the former days in which, after you were illuminated, you endured a great struggle with sufferings: partly while you were made a spectacle both by reproaches and tribulations, and partly while you became companions of those who were so treated; for you had compassion on me in my chains, and joyfully accepted the plundering of your goods, knowing that you have a better and an enduring possession for yourselves in heaven. Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise:
“For yet a little while,
And He who is coming will come and will not tarry.
Now the[n] just shall live by faith;
But if anyone draws back,
My soul has no pleasure in him.”
But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul. – Hebrews 10:32-39
But as for you, brethren, do not grow weary in doing good – 2 Thessalonians 3:13
For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and long suffering with joy; giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins. – Colossians 1:9-14
Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good. Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality. – Romans 12:9-13
Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak. – Ephesians 6:14-20
We then who are strong ought to bear with the scruples of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, leading to edification. For even Christ did not please Himself; but as it is written, “The reproaches of those who reproached You fell on Me.” For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope. Now may the God of patience and comfort grant you to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus, that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. – Romans 15:1-6
Therefore I endure all things for the sake of the elect, that they also may obtain the salvation which is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory.
This is a faithful saying:
For if we died with Him,
We shall also live with Him.
If we endure,
We shall also reign with Him.
If we deny Him,
He also will deny us.
If we are faithless,
He remains faithful;
He cannot deny Himself. – 2 Timothy 2:10-13
being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ – Philippians 1:6
Do not grumble against one another, brethren, lest you be condemned. Behold, the Judge is standing at the door! My brethren, take the prophets, who spoke in the name of the Lord, as an example of suffering and patience. Indeed we count them blessed who endure. You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord—that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful. – James 5:9-11
For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. But he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come. – Matthew 24:9-14
But the Lord is faithful, who will establish you and guard you from the evil one. And we have confidence in the Lord concerning you, both that you do and will do the things we command you. Now may the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the patience of Christ. – 2 Thessalonians 3:3-5
Because you have kept My command to persevere, I also will keep you from the hour of trial which shall come upon the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth. Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown. He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name. “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” ’ – Revelation 3:10-13
These things says He who holds the seven stars in His right hand, who walks in the midst of the seven golden lamp stands: “I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars; and you have persevered and have patience, and have labored for My name’s sake and have not become weary. – Revelation 2:1-3
Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. – 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
This is how God saved my life with $1. It was Friday afternoon. I decided to run to church to pick up my bass and a music stand. You know, a girl has to practice every so often. So I get there, load up my bass guitar in one hand and a music stand in the other hand.
It was 1:26 PM. As I was walking by the Altar I heard God speak to me in the Spirit. ‘Take your cash and put in it the Faithworks jar.” Faithworks is one of the local ministries our Church supports. And what do I do? I start arguing with God in my head. I say, “But my hands are full.” Being the slow learner that I sometimes am, I ignored Him and started walking to the door.
God spoke to me again. “Take your cash and put it in the Faithworks jar.” Did I listen? Nope. This time my argument was, “I only have $1 in my purse. Are they really that broke that they need this dollar?” And then the moment when Holy Spirit pricks your heart. You know…
So I reluctantly put down the bass, put down the music stand, and got out the $1 from my wallet. I put it in the Faithworks jar. Then I gathered my things and headed back home.
I got out on I90 and 5 minutes later I was sitting in standstill traffic. I was under a bridge near the Hospital. I saw one Ambulance and Police car drive down the ramp. Then the Firetrucks. Then Ambulance 2,3,and 4. Then 3 more Police cars.Then the tow trucks came. 1,2,3,4,5. I started praying for whoever was hurt. That’s a lot of ambulances. Traffic still sitting there for almost half an hour as we watched the Emergency Responders do their job. God bless them all Lord.
You see at 1:35 PM there was a huge accident on I90. As the cars cleared out with the tow trucks the traffic was diverted to 1 lane. As I drove slowly by, I counted the crunched cars. 1,2,3,…there were 10 cars and a semi truck in the accident. I saw people standing on the side of the road with kids and a dog. My heart hurt for them. The top ripped off a F150 pickup. So many crunched cars. So many ambulances. “Help them all Lord,” was all I could say.
It didn’t hit me until I was further down the road, back at 60 mph. I started shaking. If I didn’t have that little 5 minute argument with God over that stupid $1 I would have been in that crash. I had to pull of at the next exit. You see, I was so worried about having to put my stuff down and dig out that dollar that I didn’t see it. I pulled into a store parking lot and turned the car off.
I got it. The tears just stared flowing. “Thank you Lord for that delay. Thank you Lord for healing all those people. Thank you Jesus for your Divine protection.” I sat there about 30 minutes calming down.
After that I took the backroads home. No more I90. I should not be surprised that God interrupts our everyday life and cares for his kids. We do the same thing with our kids. I am grateful He does though. Thank you Jesus.
Fast forward 1 week. I share my story at Testimony time and praise God for his protection.
Fast forward to today, 2 weeks later. After music practice I look down at my music bag. What is sitting on top but $2.00. You see, God gives us back double for our trouble! Praise Jesus!
I have to remind myself that God’s love is greater than any challenge I face. Sometimes I forget. Here is a poem/song I wrote way back in 2010. Recently our JAM Praise Band has started sharing our original songs. This is the first one I shared. Here is our band playing – no editing or Melodyne – just a group of us who love Jesus!
I admit it. I am a naive patient. I have gone to the same Dr in the same clininc for years. When a problem arose I trusted the Dr to refer me to the specialist and assumed they were talking to each other for my best healthcare. I have learned this is not always the case. Sometimes, you have to be your own advocate for your Healthcare.
I have learned this last year that once a Dr sends you off to the specialist, they do not always follow through. They assume the specialist will do what they are supposed to do and they don’t have to deal with it. Then, when more specialists get involved, I thought they would all talk to each other. Not true.
This past year I have seen my Primary Dr, a Neurologist, an Orthopaedic Dr, a Neuropsychiatirst, a Physical Therapist, and an Occupational Therapist. Yeah, it’s been a year.
My eyes were opened when my Physical Therapist, whom I had been seeing for 3 months, twice a week, made it a point to write a special letter to the Neurologist #1 explaining my issues and the difficulties I was having. She shared how my progress was deteriorating and she needed direction on what exercieses I should do next and what Diagnosis the Neurologist would give me regarding these tremors/seizures.
When I went to the Neurologist #1, I asked him about the note from my Physical Therapist. He did not ever read it. I fired him. That is just wrong. So then I went to Neurologist #2. I asked my Physical Therapist to send him the same letter explaining my struggles. She did. Guess what? When I got to Neurologist #2 he had not ever read it either!
Ugggh. Really? So they send me here, there, and everywhere and they are so important that they will not even read what their supposed partners have found? It is so frustrating!
That is when I decided I have to own my treatment and my own healthcare. Yes, they are the Doctors, but many times they are only interested in their own findings and don’t look at me as a whole person.
After 4 MRI’s Neurologist #2 says that I don’t have any lesions on my brain or spinal cord, so there is nothing else he can do for me. He sends me to the Neuropsychiatrst. Pass the buck here. No, that is me, I am the patient.
I have been going to this Neuoropshychaitrist for 3 months now. The seizures are getting worse with FND ( Functional Neurological Disorder) and I am getting more frustrated.
My friend Laura suggested I get referred to another clinic that was associated with a large hospital in our area, UW-Madison. Thank you Laura! I sent a note to my Primary Doctor and she finally referred me to this other place, out of their network, and I will see Neurologist #3 here shortly.
I guess I share this with you because I learned that I can’t believe everything that a Doctor tells me. I have to OWN my health and my healthcare. I was told I would have this FND forever and there is no cure, just live with it. Ummmm – NO! I do not accept that.
Jesus died so I did not have to carry this illness, by HIS stripes I AM healed. And if one clinic is not going to help me get there, then I’ll go to the next one. God has given Doctors the gift of medicine just like Luke. Healing is from God, and sometimes He uses Doctors to administer it. I refuse to belive that there is no cure for this. I refuse to believe that I will be this way forever!
“Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved; for you are my praise.” – Jeremiah 17:14
What about you? Have you ever had to change Doctors or Clinics?
What if you got up – just one more time? I understand being stuck. The last 9 months I have been stuck in my recliner due to a multitude of illnesses. I had pretty much given up hope of ever having a normal life again. But then God came to visit.
The presence of God surrounded her with peace and love and mercy. God covered her and loved the illness out.
Romans 12:2 – And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
Philippians 4:8– Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things [are] honest, whatsoever things [are] just, whatsoever things [are] pure, whatsoever things [are] lovely, whatsoever things [are] of good report; if [there be] any virtue, and if [there be] any praise, think on these things
One of my husband’s favorite sayings is, “Give God a Minute.” Yeah, I know. I am not the most patient person. I’ll admit it. In this world of drive through food and instant internet access I really have to practice my patience. Here are a few quotes to help us all hold on!
Hold On Quotes to Give God a Minute
“When God is ready for you to move, He will make your situation uncomfortable.” ― Germany Kent
“Feed your faith and starve your doubts.” – Kenneth E. Hagin Sr.
To learn strong faith is to endure great trials. I have learned my faith by standing firm amid severe testings. – George Mueller
“Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.” – Corrie Ten Boom
“Do you see what this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we’d better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls!” Hebrews 12:1-3 MSG
“There is no ongoing spiritual life without this process of letting go. At the precise point where we refuse, growth stops. If we hold tightly to anything given to us, unwilling to let it go when the time comes to let it go or unwilling to allow it to be used as the Giver means it to be used, we stunt the growth of the soul. It is easy to make a mistake here, “If God gave it to me,” we say, “its mine. I can do what I want with it.” No. The truth is that it is ours to thank Him for and ours to offer back to Him, ours to relinquish, ours to lose, ours to let go of – if we want to find our true selves, if we want real life, if our hearts are set on glory.” ― Elisabeth Elliot
Faith isn’t faith until it’s all you’re holding on to.” – Unknown
“Your true love for God is demonstrated through your ability to hold onto your faithfulness in the midst of Prosperity and Poverty, Happiness and Hardships, Sickness and Success; in whatever is Appealing or Appalling!” ― Israelmore Ayivor
“Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul and sings the tune without the words — And never stops at all.” -Emily Dickinson
“So let’s not allow ourselves to get fatigued doing good. At the right time we will harvest a good crop if we don’t give up, or quit. Right now, therefore, every time we get the chance, let us work for the benefit of all, starting with the people closest to us in the community of faith.” Galatians 6-9-10 MSG
“Where God guides, He provides. No matter how things look, God is still in control. Stay in peace and be hopeful. Your blessing is coming soon.” ― Germany Kent
“Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.” Romans 8:26-28 MSG
Hey all, been a while. I have recently broken my right arm so typing has been a challenge. No worries, God is more than able to heal. I will be back to my normal sassy self soon, lol! During this process I have to admit I have taken my health for granted. I never really got that sick so I never really thought about it much.
Then, I fell outside, landed on my right elbow. I broke my radius and 3 breaks in my shoulder in the humerus. Ouch! I’m in a sling and the Doc says with Occupational Therapy and time I will heal, but he said my shoulder will never be the same. Great.
So, here I sit, day after day, waiting for my body to heal. I admit, I really don’t like pain. I don’t know of anyone who does. Bone break pain sucks. It keeps me up at night. Then I turn into Cruella Deville. Yep, I’m cranky! Just ask my husband. And there is not a dang thing I can do about it.
I am taking my meds, doing my approved exercises, and wearing this sling and I have to sit and wait. You know me, I don’t like waiting. I love the drive throughs in places. You don’t even have to get out of your car! Can I have a drive through new shoulder please? Yes, and a side of elbow with that. I know, laugh or cry!
Anyway, this time has given me time to reflect. I would get so caught up in the little things that really didn’t matter anyway. This life is only temporary. This world is not our real home anyway. We are Citizens of Heaven and children of the King of Kings!
So I set my thoughts on things above and do my best with what I have. It’s not perfect and I would rather be more comfortable, yet I press on to the goal God has set before me. I had to let go of what was, surrender to what is, and have faith in what will be. God is with me and as long as I stick with Him I know I’ll be alright.
I have many sisters in Christ who are helping me. A few of us text each other a Bible Verse every morning. I can’t tell you how this has helped me hold on to my faith during this time of difficulty. Today’s declaration was:
“I am blessed and it’s only a matter of time before things change. What I see now is only temporary. ” 2 Corinthians 4:18
This one got to me. Hallelujah, this too will pass! This arm thing is only temporary! Woohoo! I pray you have a blessed day and week, and let’s talk soon!
Have you ever seen a Swordsmith forge a new sword? I love those old Medieval movies that show that. The Swordsmith takes that piece of metal and sticks it in the fire and then folds it over again and again repeating the process many times. The blade is shaped and sharpened by the Swordsmith. He takes it in his hand and sticks it into the fire and then beats on to make it sharper and more beautiful. All the impurities of the metal are burned off in the fire. Then, when it is red hot, the Swordsmith takes the new sword and quenches it in water, all to harden the blade. There is steam everywhere and the sword is born. The sword was forged in the fire.
I looked up the meaning of “forged” (but not like a check, lol):
1. make or shape (a metal object) by heating it in a fire or furnace and beating or hammering it. More synonyms – hammer out, beat into, shape, found, cast, mold, model
2. create (a relationship or new conditions). “the two women forged a close bond” More synonyms: build, build up, construct, form, create, establish, set up, put together
I like swords. They are used in battle. They are beautiful and magnificant. They are sharp – sharper than a knife. The Word of God is like that:
For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account. – Hebrews 4:12-13 NKJV
In the Bible, God shares that His Word is our Sword and it is used in battle:
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.
Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak. – Ephesians 6:10-20NKJV
So just like a warrior holds his sword to defeat his enemies, we are to hold the WORD OF GOD as our sword.
It is God’s Word that will defeat the enemies in our lives, not our own swords or our own effort.
What if we spoke to the enemies in our lives – whether sickness, disease, poverty, lack, depression, etc. and spoke the Word of God to them? Would we then see our enemies sliced and diced and dead?
What if it meant going through the fire first?
For You, O God, have tested us; You have refined us as silver is refined. – Psalm 66″ 10 NKJV
For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is.If anyone’s work which he has built on itendures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire. – 1 Corinthians 3:11-15 NKJV
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls. – 1 Peter 1: 3-9 NKJV
Would you do it? Like those 3 boys, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego – would you go in the furnace in order not to bow to the idols or false kings in this world? Remember, Jesus is there with you in that furnace. And you will come out and not even smell like smoke.
It wasn’t until after the boys went through the fire that the king and all of his followers bowed to the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego…that’s when the revival took place, after the fire. The reviaval and the promotion came AFTER the fire:
Nebuchadnezzar spoke, saying, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, who sent His Angel[g] and delivered His servants who trusted in Him, and they have frustrated the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they should not serve nor worship any god except their own God! Therefore I make a decree that any people, nation, or language which speaks anything amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made an ash heap; because there is no other God who can deliver like this.” Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego in the province of Babylon. – Daniel 3: 28-30NKJV
The Shepherd Savior
“Awake, O sword, against My Shepherd, Against the Man who is My Companion,” Says the Lord of hosts. “Strike the Shepherd, And the sheep will be scattered; Then I will turn My hand against the little ones.
And it shall come to pass in all the land,” Says the Lord, “That two-thirds in it shall be cut off and die, But one-third shall be left in it:
I will bring the one-third through the fire, Will refine them as silver is refined, And test them as gold is tested. They will call on My name, And I will answer them. I will say, ‘This is My people’; And each one will say, ‘The Lord is my God.’ ” – Zechariah 13:7-9 NKJV
When facing a trial or battle, the one thing that I have found to be my best weapon is the Word of God. Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do NOT see yet. I have to exercise my faith and speak the Word of God over my situation.
Yes, I have been battling sickness and infirmity for the last year. The Drs keep ordering test after test and keep adding things to my chart for a diagnosis. (You can read about it here – Living Through a Season of Infirmity) But they are not God. God’s Word says I am HEALED already. I have to apply God’s Word to my body, just like I have to apply the ointment to my body and take the medicine the Dr. gave me. God’s word will NOT return to Him void. It WILL accomplish that which it was set out to do! Speak it out! Our bodies may be our mountains, and they respond to our own voice. God promised that mountains would move when we SPEAK to them. Say Gods’ Word out loud, let your body hear it – and then watch and see what God does!
Do you have your Word ready?
Do you have the promises of God that apply to your situation?
That is your sword. Here are some of the promises of God I am using to build my faith and receive my healing.
God’s Word for Sickness:
And the Lord will take away from you all sickness, and will afflict you with none of the terrible diseases of Egypt which you have known, but will lay them on all those who hate you. – Deuteronomy 7:15
He sent His word and healed them, And delivered them from their destructions. – Psalm 107:20
Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; Save me, and I shall be saved, For You are my praise. – Jeremiah 17:14
For I will restore health to you And heal you of your wounds,’ says the Lord, ‘Because they called you an outcast saying: “This is Zion; No one seeks her.” – Jeremiah 30:17
But those who wait on the Lord Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint. – Isaiah 40:31
that word you know, which was proclaimed throughout all Judea, and began from Galilee after the baptism which John preached: how God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. – Acts 10:37-38
Then He called His twelve disciples together and gave them power and authority over all demons, and to cure diseases. – Luke 9:1
And He said to them, “Go into all the worldand preach the gospel to every creature.He who believes and is baptized will be saved;but he who does not believe will be condemned.And thesesigns will follow those who believe:In My name they will cast out demons;they will speak with new tongues;they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them;they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” – Mark 16:15-18
Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the Lord delivers him out of them all. – Psalm 34:19
Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand. – Isaiah 41:10
So you shall serve the Lord your God, and He will bless your bread and your water. And I will take sickness away from the midst of you. – Exodus 23:25
Surely He has borne our griefs And carried our sorrows; Yet we esteemed Him stricken, Smitten by God, and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed. – Isaiah 53:4-5
It was God who called us out of darkness into His marvelous light. Before we were formed in our mother’s womb, He knew us. Before we were even born, Jesus went to the cross to redeem and save us. Surely, God will finish the work He started in us.
being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ. – Phillipians 1:6 NKJV
Sometimes it’s hard to see the forest through the trees. So many of us are going through firey trials. Let’s take a step back, and breathe. Surely God will not leave us in this place. He promised never to leave us or forsake us. He promised to go before us and light the way. Let’s stop looking around at all these awful circumstances and look up for our Salvation draws nigh!
God is our Master Builder. He is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. Whether we live or we die, we belong to the Lord. God will finish the work He started in us. Rest, relax in Jesus, He is our beginning and our end – not us, not our circumstances, not this life on Earth. Jesus is the end!
“And behold, I am coming quickly, andMy reward is with Me,to give to every one according to his work.I am the Alpha and the Omega, theBeginning and the End, the First and the Last.” – Revelation 22:12-13 NKJV
God knows, God sees, and He WILL deliver us!
And the Lord will deliver me from every evil work and preserve me for His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory forever and ever. Amen! – 2 Timothy 4:18 NKJV
Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive me; You will stretch out Your hand Against the wrath of my enemies, And Your right hand will save me. The Lord will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy, O Lord, endures forever; Do not forsake the works of Your hands. – Psalm 138:7-8 NKJV