Repentance

So many churches do not preach a gospel of repentance these days.  Rather, they preach a social gospel that is weak and doesn’t meet the deep needs of our souls.  I found a series that is very refreshing because it DOES preach that old-time gospel of repentance.  Pastor Brian Hughes does an outstanding job of preaching this biblically based message.

Repentance

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Spiritually Comatose

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Spiritually Comatose
Brushing your teeth, showering, getting dressed, making the bed – These are all things we do automatically, without giving it much thought.
If we aren’t careful, we can do the same thing in our spiritual lives. We can fall into the habit of reading the Word, paying our tithe, going to church and Sunday school – all without absorbing any of it. We do it automatically because it has become a habit.
The result is we become spiritually comatose. Though our body is very much alive, our spirit is completely dead on the inside. It’s a slow process, done little by little, but one day, we realize we just feel dead inside.
The cure is to stay hydrated by drinking from the Living Water.
Colossians 3:23 tells us that whatever we do, it should be done heartily, as to the Lord. This implies that it isn’t something done automatically – it is a choice of our will to do it heartily.
Psalm 16:11 tells us that in His presence there is fullness of joy and His path is a path of LIFE. So clearly, the Lord desires more for us than to fall into a state of being spiritually comatose.
Deuteronomy 6:5 tells us we are to love the Lord with ALL our heart, soul, and strength. It requires using all of our mind and emotions to do this. By doing so, we won’t fall into that dangerous and sad state of being.
© 2017, Stacy R Miller

When Christians Make Mistakes

Wasted Energy

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Wasted Energy

Do you struggle with worry?  Do you ever get really agitated? Are you ever disturbed by something which has taken place between you and another person?  If you are like me, you can go to bed at night and continue to “play” the situation over and over in your mind.  It is hard to turn it off.  Yet, all that worry is nothing more than wasted energy.

Jesus tells us in John 14:27 to “stop allowing ourselves to be agitated and disturbed; and do not permit yourselves to be fearful and intimidated and cowardly and unsettled.” (AMP)

There are a few areas where women allow themselves to be agitated and disturbed.  One is by being a people pleaser.  By trying to please everyone, we end up in emotional turmoil.  What we need to realize is that we cannot please everyone all the time.

Another situation that leads us to be disturbed is the belief that everyone has to like us.  Dear one, there is always going to be somebody who doesn’t like you.  Guess what?  That is OK!  While God loved the world so much that He sent Jesus to die for us, I am certain there are some people in this world He just doesn’t like!  Think ISIS members, Charles Manson, or even child molesters, just to name a few.

Another area that causes us to end up in distress is our failure to learn to say “no.”  Anytime I am asked to take on a commitment, if I do not immediately know what my answer should be, I will ask the person to give me time to pray about it.

I have learned to say no over the years.  It is a wonderful freedom to be able to say no, and to do so without guilt!  Recently, I was approached by a lady from church who wanted me to help with something during one of the upcoming services.  I immediately felt I was not to commit.  On the day I would have been committed to assisting her, I received a phone call from our music director, asking if I could teach her class that morning.  Had I said yes to the earlier request, I would not have been in a position to agree to teach the class when asked.

One last area I would like to address is that of disobedience.  Several months ago, I was feeling enormously stressed.  I could not understand why until I got before the Lord.  He clearly showed me that I was holding on to a place of ministry where He had not called me.  I immediately repented and stepped down from that position.  My stress level dropped immensely.

Now if this does not help you to overcome your own wasted energy of worrying, perhaps the following information will help you in making necessary changes.
© 2007, Stacy R Miller

We “live” on stress.  It is a daily part of our lives, an every-day-burden we bear.  There is actually a chemical reaction which takes place when we feel stressed.  It releases something in our body that can actually give us a “high” of sorts.  When we allow this cycle to continue over and over, it can be very destructive to our bodies, leading to:  memory loss, loss of sleep, a compromised immune system, auto immune disease, multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, heart trouble, fibromyalgia, hypertension (high blood pressure), and cancer.

Dear sister, is it really worth your health to allow yourself to be constantly agitated and disturbed?  Ask the Lord to help you number your days and to realize how fleeting life is. (Psalm 39:4-6) Determine to set your mind on things above. (Colossians 3:1) Train your mind to think on things which are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, and praiseworthy. (Philippians 4:8)

Keep in mind that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit.  Is that how you want to treat the temple of the Living God?  When you start to worry, or get agitated and disturbed, ask yourself if the issue is really worth the toll it will take on your physical body.  I don’t know about you, but I want to be around for a long time – even if there are people who don’t like me!  (See the previous devotion if you don’t follow the humor in that last statement.)
© 2007, Stacy R Miller

The Waiting Room

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The Waiting Room

I don’t know too many people who enjoy sitting in the waiting room, yet at some point, we will be required to bide our time there.  God has His own waiting room for us.  In Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, we find that there are seasons to our lives.  One of those seasons can be God’s waiting room.  For those of us who feel useless, or struggle with a lack of self-worth if we aren’t doing something which we feel is productive, it can be torture to endure.

Let’s take a visit to some of God’s waiting rooms.

First, there is a time to be born. Perhaps God has shown you a ministry He wants to give you.  Before He births it, He has to conceive it in your heart, and then you must go through the ‘pregnancy’ stage where it grows deeply in your spirit.  Finally, you get to experience the birth pangs and ministry is born.

Sometimes God calls us to the waiting room to die. Sometimes dying to our flesh will be a very quick death, similar to one who has had a massive coronary.  Other times, dying to our flesh can be a slow, arduous process, similar to one who is slowly dying of cancer.

We also visit the waiting room for a time to heal.  Whether we’ve been hurt physically or emotionally, sometimes God calls us to the waiting room so that we can experience complete healing.

Other times we may be sent to the waiting room so that God can help us tear down strongholds that are hindering us spiritually.  When we are too busy, we often are unable to see those things which hinder us, so it’s time to visit the waiting room.

There is also a waiting room where we can weep and mourn.  Before we can experience the true laughter and dancing, we may go through devastating times that require us to just sit in the waiting room, soaking up God’s comfort like a sponge.  Eventually, we will find laughter and dancing replacing the depths of our mourning.

There’s also a time to embrace and a time to refrain.  We have seasons in our lives where we will be heavily involved in ministry, but sometimes God calls us to the waiting room and asks us to refrain for a while.

There’s also a time to give up.  If God is calling you to give up something, yet you stubbornly hold on to it, He may call you to the waiting room for some counseling.  He’ll do whatever it takes to get to the root of why you refuse to give it up.

There’s a time to be silent.  Sometimes God calls us to the waiting room just so we will learn to be still.  He wants to teach us to be quiet and listen to Him, and sometimes it’s only a visit to the waiting room where He is finally able to get our attention.

There’s another waiting room that can be an intense waiting, for there is a time for war and time for peace.  When we go through seasons that involve intense warfare over a situation, God may call us to His waiting room.  Once the spiritual battle is won, He may quickly transfer us to the waiting room of peace so that we can take some time to be rejuvenated from the intensity of spiritual battles.

While we may not enjoy the waiting room, God uses it to show us that His power is made perfect in our weakness. (II Corinthians 12:9) Jesus is the one who perfects of our faith (Hebrews 12:2), and sometimes the perfecting process requires a visit to the waiting room.

Are you in the waiting room right now?
© 2005, Stacy R. Miller

User Friendly

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User Friendly

In today’s society of high-tech gadgets, we often hear the term “user-friendly.”  That is a good thing for those who, like me, are technically-challenged.  Yet, it is not so good when applied in a spiritual sense.

When we are user-friendly, we are like a magnet which attracts users.  If we are not careful, we will be like a used-up box of cereal – empty.

To avoid this, pick up the Book that is user-friendly – the Bible.  We need wisdom to help us be friendly and kind, yet not fall prey to being used.  Our Bible is filled with wise words which will help us avoid becoming user-friendly.
© 2007, Stacy R Miller

Give Us This Day Our Daily Bread

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