Saturday, August 31, 2013

The Moment His Light Finds My Dark

   There I was, crumpled on the floor. Beaten and bruised. In a desperate place, I cried out, "Help me!" There was nothing more that I could do. I felt alone and ashamed. There I lay crippled with brokenness, and that was the moment when He touched me.

   In the midst of all my agony, I felt Him. This is the moment when I realize nothing else matters. In the end, our God is all that will remain.

   "And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever." (1 John 2:17)

   The Lord came in and fixed my eyes. He shifted my focus. What is of utmost importance to me is the Kingdom of God. Whatever earthly things that clutter my mind are unnecessary. Pollution that the devil slings at me is useless and unwanted. Whatever he is saying, doesn't affect me. It will not last in the end. God is forever.

   I choose to live with zest and joy. I choose to confront the lies of the enemy with the truth of my God. My salvation is determined, and there is nothing he can do to change that. I am loved. I am cherished by my Father. I am a very important warrior for Christ. Deflect the enemy's fiery darts with the Word.

   When the Lord is my all, there is no place for fleshly desires. Because I only focus on my God, I cannot allow the enemy to block my vision. I am determined to follow solely Jesus, I shan't stray from His path. I will not be distracted nor sidetracked, for I am on a mission.

   I'd begged to have a clean start, and a clean start the Lord has given to me. That is when His light overcame my dark past. "The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it." (John 1:5)

   "The people who sat in darkness have seen a great light, And upon those who sat in the region and shadow of death Light has dawned." (Matthew 4:16)

   In that hour of despair, that is when He came and flooded me with His light. From Him came overflowing grace and compassion. Even when I am covered with scars from my sins, He still loves me more than I could ever imagine. Unfailing Love.

   "For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light." (Ephesians 5:8) We have been far removed from our former, and we are now adopted sons and daughters of the King. This is the moment His light finds our dark

   -The Introverted Evangelist

Friday, August 30, 2013

His Grace

   Oh what grace You have shown me, my Lord, that even when I habitually sin, You still hold me close. I have no doubt that Your love for us all is completely unfailing and everlasting. I am amazed by Your patience for me, God. 

   "The Lord is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy." (Psalms 103:8)

   "The Lord is gracious and full of compassion, Slow to anger and great in mercy." (Psalms 145:8)

   Now I see what You have so lovingly done for me. Now I know that I am secure. I am ever so grateful for Your love. A simple "thank you" will not suffice. You are so merciful, and You relent from doing harm. I am confident in the fact that no matter how far off I wander, You will always welcome me home with open arms.

   Your love is perfect. You are the Great I Am. You are the One who reigns over all for all eternity. You are my hope and my peace. I trust that You will never leave my side. I can declare that I will never be abandoned, for Your compassion is always upon me.

   I love You, my Lord, but what significant love You have for me. That love of Yours, which surpasses all, is solely found in You. You are all that is pure and lovely. You are beautiful. You are so good, God.

   "O Lord, You have searched me and known me." (Psalms 139:1) You are aware of my sinful nature and acquainted with all my ways, yet You still love me. "Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is high, I cannot attain it." (Psalms 139:6)

   Your love is undeniably incomprehensible. It's so perfect and flawless, that we don't understand it. Your grace is astoundingly abundant. It goes farther than the oceans stretch and flood our very souls. You are miraculously merciful. The miracle at the cross is incomparable mercy for all God's children. Nothing will ever separate us. You amaze me Lord.

   -The Introverted Evangelist

Monday, August 26, 2013

Mind Games

   Mind games. This life here on earth is jam-packed full of mind games played by the devil. The enemy is very tactical and malicious. He gives his all to every attack, because that's all he ever does. His full-time occupation is to deceive and destroy.

   Look around at all the darkness in this world. Every fallen soul, every child that has wandered away is a result of allowing the devil's mind games to sink in, manifest, and take root. Don't let his weeds choke the beautiful garden that the Lord has planted in you.

   Satan is so tricky. It's absolutely imperative that you be on guard. Keep the Word of God hidden in your heart. Make it a prime source in your defense arsenal. Don't ever allow the enemy's lies to remain in your thoughts. Don't think you've got it all under control by yourself. It's always best to cling to the strong hand of the Lord. Remember we never face these attacks alone.

   "Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you." (Deuteronomy 31:6)

   The devil desperately hopes that we will give up and quit running the race. He wants us to feel like we've been defeated. He solely craves to have power over us. When, in reality, he has no power whatsoever. All authority belongs to our God

   Through Jesus, we have the power to defeat the enemy. What he tells us (which is nothing but no-good, nasty, icky lies!) does not affect us in any way. We are completely safe in Jesus Christ.

   "Behold, I give to you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you." (Luke 10:19)

   -The Introverted Evangelist

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Be Not Dismayed

   My stress, my worries, my fear, and my sorrow I can bring to my God. I might lose my temper, but my Lord is pure. "The Lord is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy." (Psalms 103:8)

   Though I feel afraid, my God tells me not to fear. "Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand." (Isaiah 41:10)

   "Be not dismayed," The definition of the word dismayed is to be "struck with fear, dread, or consternation". Stuck is defined to be "affected by something overwhelming" So when the Lord says, "Be not dismayed," He is telling us to not become struck with overwhelming fear or dread.

   "for I am your God." Let the Lord control your thoughts. Remember that He is the Lord of our lives and our minds, and worry does not have authority over us. The reason for our dismay is so often because we allow ourselves to dwell on what's bothering us for long periods of time. We obsess on our anxieties. They soon begin to fill up our minds and overwhelm us. Before long, we feel like we're drowning or spinning out of control.

   When fear creeps in, come to the Father, the God of all, the Lord over our lives and thoughts. He is with us, He will give us strength, and He will help us through. Don't let fear and dread invade your mind, but give way for the Prince of peace to fill you up with His unfailing peace.

   "Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." (John 14:27)

   -The Introverted Evangelist

Saturday, August 24, 2013

The Skies Display His Craftmanship

   When I look around me, I see the most stunning and magnificent sights. It sparks in me a great appreciation and admiration of what our God has made. He is the almighty One, the divine Creator, and He loves us so much. I can only imagine that He places these beautiful things into our lives to make us smile.

   I'm in awe of it all. All of what He's designed is just so incredible. He gave each creature the ability to love and feel. He taught the sun when to rise and set. He crafted the the mountains and drew out the vast oceans we gaze upon. Praise Him!

   Everything new. His creations are all new. "For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind." (Isaiah 65:17)

   I see that the beauty of the nature of what He created is a grand reminder of how we have been renewed. When the lord created all the earth He made it all new, and you see: it is marvelously beautiful.

   Who are we to say such horrid things of ourselves. Who are we to say that we are not good enough. It is not good for us to fill our minds with toxic thoughts. We are wonderfully created by our Master. We are all quite different, because He is creative.

   Look outside, look at it all. It's wonderfully made. If our Lord cares so much to make our surroundings this gorgeous, imagine just how lovely we are in His eyes. God bless you with abundant peace.

   -The Introverted Evangelist

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Declare Who You Are

   I'm looking up today. I'm proclaiming that I am not a victim to the enemy. I may struggle with the lies he uses to try to penetrate my mind, but I know who I really am. I'm a child of God.

   I refuse to hang my head or drown in my constant worries, because I know that I can take what's bugging me right to my Father. I guarantee that He'll take care of all those anxious thoughts. He cares about our fears. He loves us dearly.

   The real reason I can often become hung up on the enemy's nasty lies is because he's jealous, angry, and bitter. He's so determined to steal our joy because he has no joy whatsoever. I can be filled with joy and peace because I'm destined for heave, but he is steaming with rage because he is going nowhere. He gets to stay right where he is: in hell.

   Once I can be completely confident that my God is way bigger than all my anxieties, that's when all Satan's lies will seem so ridiculously silly. God loves me and Satan hates me. God tells me I'm "wonderfully made", but the devil tells me that I'm "Inefficient and don't need to take care of myself, because whatever your team has been telling you isn't true. They're all trying to trick you." Which do I believe?

   Once it's written down it's plain as day: the enemy is just a big liar. He's nothing but an elementary school playground bully. Oh what a pitiful thing he is. So, I'll be over here enjoying everything my Father has blessed me with: my salvation in Jesus, my family, my home up in heaven (which you don't get to enjoy, remember?), my team, and yes the things that seem "too good to be true"! Have a grand time down there in hell, Satan, because that's where you're staying!

   Declare your freedom! Do not give the enemy any sort of feelings of satisfaction. You are not a victim to him. You are royalty, remember! Don't forget that you're now adopted into the royal family of the Lord. God bless you!

   -The Introverted Evangelist

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Our New Title

   Think about how God created the whole entire universe from nothing at all. He didn't need any previous matter to make it either. He created it. There is a world of difference between creating and renovating or fixing.
   The definition of creating is to bring something into existence. Now I looked into the definition of existence. One of those definitions was "the fact or state of living or having objective reality". However, one of the other definitions really caught my interest. It was this: "continued survival".
   "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new." (2 Corinthians 5:17)
   In this verse the words "new creation" are used to describe us now that we are in Christ. When I searched the definition of the word creation, I found three that pertain to this verse. The first two being almost word for word the same as the definitions for creating or created, but the last one was a bit different. The third one said this: "the action or process of investing someone with a new rank or title."
   At first glance I may not have taken anything from it, but once I read it again and gave it a moment to sink in, it hit me. When we are born again in Christ Jesus, an array of really fantastic things begin to happen. One being that we are completely and totally made new. New as in nothing from the old us can be part of the new us, because that's what creating is. Another being that we can now stand before the Lord shamelessly and cleansed from our former sinful ways.
   When Jesus took our place on that cross and was crucified so we could be redeemed, we took on a new name. We are now sons and daughters to the King of kings. What we used to be is no longer present in our lives. The One that created the heavens and the earth has made me and you into brand new creations.
   What a title to attain! We are royalty in His sensational Kingdom. Now we have a new rank that is creations of our God. Masterpieces by a very skillful Creator. The new you has nothing to do with the old you, so rejoice and sing songs of praise!
   "For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." (2 Corinthians 5:21)

   -The Introverted Evangelist

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

What Does it Mean to Live?

   Life. What does it mean to live? How does Christ want us to experience this life? Is the life we're living today reflect His promises? Are we living the truth that is salvation?

   "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." (John 10:10)
   I don't go through my day to day life living fully abundant. I wish that I did, but that is not the case, at least not always. Why do I not? Well, because I can often feel overwhelmed by what the enemy shoots at me. Yuck.

   This is precisely when I must remember that my God has all the authority. My God is more powerful than the enemy, and He's the One protecting me. Jesus says this: "My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father's hand." (John 10:29)

   We're safe in His arms. Through Him we're made free. We can freely live our lives in complete joy and abundance! We are loved and we are children of the One living God. Hallelujah! God bless you!

   -The Introverted Evangelist

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Powerful Deliverer

   "In my distress I called upon the Lord, And cried out to my God; He heard my voice from His temple, And my cry entered His ears." (2 Samuel 22:7)
   What love is this, O God, that You have showed me mercy even in my darkest hour? What grace with which You've blessed me so dearly. My greatest desire, my Lord, to live a life of gratitude. To live as Your child, in constant fellowship with You. My soul is satisfied when I am with You. You make my cup overflow and restore my hope.
   I was once buried in sin and fear, but now I have received freedom. By the grace of my God, I have been made new. I no longer writhe around in pitiful miseries, but I live with joy and vitality. My highest thanks is simply not enough. Let my life be an offering for my King, the Lord of all. I will praise and praise throughout all my years, because my God set me free.

   I was hopeless, but He is my hope and strength. Though I was in the pit of despair, He came down and saved my life. I was trapped, but my Savior opened up the cage and let me out. My chains are broken, because my God is strong. Every stronghold broken in the name of Jesus.
   "Bless the Lord, O my soul, And forget not all His benefits: Who forgives all your iniquities, Who heals all your diseases, Who redeems your life from destruction, Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies," (Psalms 103:2-4)
   He is so good. He is so great and powerful. What a powerful God. He is all we need. His love is perfect, and His peace surpasses that of this world's. All glory to You, my Lord. All authority is Yours. Therefore, nothing that tries to harm us will prevail.
   "who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, angels and authorities and powers having been made subject to Him." (1 Peter 3:22)

   -The Introverted Evangelist

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Broken Hearted

   Sometimes things happen that we don't understand. Often times, our fragile human hearts feel torn and beaten. When the going gets tough, it's not uncommon for us to become bitter. Isolation is not the answer.
   Over a year ago, I was in the hospital. I was far from thrilled about being there, and all I wanted was to get out. But, I did not become angry with God. Sure He could have easily stopped the whole ordeal from occurring, but I think being there had some real purpose to it.
   I could have hardened my heart and turned away from God, but instead I found comfort in Him. It would've been so simple for me to just say, "How could You do this to me, God?" But, in that moment, God was truly my refuge. He was literally all I had, and that was okay. In fact, it was a beautiful thing.
   Though my days were stressful and tear-filled, when the sun set the good stuff happened. Every single night I would sit on that horribly uncomfortable hospital bed and read my bible. I'd delve into His Word and savor each verse.
   As I leaned into His arms, I'd feel His peace wrap around me. Nothing could ever compare to His grace. This mercy of His so satisfying, so rich, and so glorious. No matter how difficult the following day might be, I know that He is by my side. He is holding me close, and I know I'm going to get out of this. This cannot last forever, because one day I'll be freed from all this.
   Maybe today your heart is aching. Has someone left you, or do you feel betrayed and forgotten? The explanation for your loneliness could be that God wants some alone time with you. When was the last time you honestly took a moment to delight in His presence? Don't let your hurt block your Healer.

Though tears may fall, He is still God of all.

   Today I urge you to turn your teary eyes towards the Lord. He is waiting for that solitary moment when He can unleash a downpour of grace upon you. A loving, caring, compassionate Father wants so desperately to give you comfort. He sees your crying, and catches every tear in His hands.
   Come to the Father. He is tender in spirit and more than willing to renew your joy. "But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You; Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them; Let those also who love Your name Be joyful in You." (Psalms 5:11)
   I promise He hasn't forgotten you. Wherever you are right now, He is right there with you. Don't let the enemy discourage you, because the outcome of this battle is victory in Christ Jesus. He has already won, and we are already victorious. Be blessed today, my friend, for there is a loving God watching over us.

   -The Introverted Evangelist

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Forgiveness. Love. Grace.

   The Son came to set us free. He came so we could drop our chains and live in freedom. Freedom from bondages of sin and shame. We are forgiven from all unrighteousness. If Jesus has forgiven us, who are we to say otherwise. Why do we insist on punishing ourselves for things our Lord has already forgotten about?

   Do not be deceived, for we are made right before our Lord. By the blood of the Lamb, Jesus Christ, we have been cleansed and made new. Therefore, nothing from our past has power over us. No sin is too big for God. Nothing could ever make God stop loving us, because He is Love. We love because He first loved us.
   The love of God isn't like the love of fellow humans. God's love is perfect. His love never fails us. He is slow to become angry and quick to forgive. What an admirable love. I know I long to portray a love that is, in the slightest, a reflection of His. I pray that His love might pour out of my heart onto others, so that they would see my God and give Him praise.
   Don't let anybody condemn you, especially for what you have done in the past. The moment we come to God looking for redemption, He opens His arms and renews us. Jesus says in Luke 7:48, "Your sins are forgiven."
   Forgiven. When we live in a world filled with hate-ridden people who hold grudges for years, how does one grasp the concept of being completely forgiven? God's mercy satisfies our thirsty souls. Where would we be if it weren't for His grace? I am so thankful.

Here are a few verses to bring you peace:
   •Psalms 103:8, "The Lord is merciful and gracious, Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy."
   •Acts 26:18, "to open their eyes, in order to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me."
   •Ephesians 1:7, "In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace"

   Yield to the Holy Spirit, so that you might bear the fruits of the Spirit. Live compassionately and let love flow out of you freely. May the Lord bless you with His peace and grace all the days of your life. God bless.

   -The Introverted Evangelist

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Strong Faith

   Everything can start with one slippery thought, and it's all down-hill from there. Don't let your mind become choked by the enemy. He has a plan, and it's a very horrid plan. Three words to denote the enemy's mindset: discourage, deceive, destroy.
   First, you may feel sad and disappointed (bonus points for another "D" word?). Then the enemy creeps in and tries to trick you, and get you to believe his malicious lies. And because you feel extra crummy you may think it sounds convincing, and then try to implement it into your mind. Do not let icky thoughts reside in your head! It is extremely important to keep one thing at the center of your thoughts: Jesus.
   When your mind is set on Christ, nothing can disturb you. He brings peace and joy, but the enemy thrusts nasty, dirty, gross thoughts of sorrow and anger. Don't give in. When such thoughts come your way, hold up the shield of faith and say NO!

   It is so easy to go with what you think sounds realistic. All those what-ifs start to pile up, and it can quickly overtake you. Worry snatches away peace of mind. When we focus on God and how good He is, we are reminded of our great reward. When we think about how we will spend eternity with Jesus, peace is restored in our lives.
   Praise Him, for He has given us hope. He has renewed our faith and strength. Through Him we have victory. Nothing can defeat us, because we have Christ by our side. What reassurance He brings to us. What marvelous things He has done for us.
   "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)
   If we ask, God will strengthen our faith. Whenever we are feeling discouraged or deceived, God will come and save us from destruction. He is faithful. He won't let us fall. He doesn't sit up in heaven laughing at our failures, the devil does that. He cares for us deeply, and desires to have fellowship with us. In order to have a very close and intimate relationship with Jesus, we must have faith and trust in Him.
   Once we are flourishing in our relationship with Christ, we will notice a change in perspective. Trials and tribulations are now doors to become even closer. When hardships come, it will be our very first instinct to press in on God. He provides comfort and hope in times of need. He gives us the strength to be thankful for even the worst of days. 
   With His hand in ours, nothing is impossible. We are going to make it. We can do this. Because God is constantly with us, we shouldn't fear one tiny bit. Worry is unnecessary. Anxiety is useless. Our hope is in Christ the Lord.
   Because we have such a lovely attitude towards such things, others are going to notice and wonder what it is that keeps us so joyful. Streams of love and kindness overflow from our hearts. God has blessed us greatly, now let us bless those around us. Let's show the compassion God shows us to every living creature. Let God's love abound throughout the earth. How beautiful it will be. The day is coming. Rejoice!

   -The Introverted Evangelist