Confessions of the Heart

Guard your heart more than anything else, because the source of your life flows from it.

Proverbs 4:23 GW

Training the body helps a little, but godly living helps in every way. Godly living has the promise of life now and in the world to come.

1 Timothy 4:8 GW

God is faithful and reliable. If we confess our sins, he forgives them and cleanses us from everything we’ve done wrong.

1 John 1:9 GW

There is a way that seems right to a man, but it leads only to death.

What is that way?

Seeking to please ourselves.

We were created to please God not our flesh.

What does pleasing our flesh look like?

The Bible tells us the answer.

And just so you know, our flesh is the same thing as the corrupt nature.

Now, the effects of the corrupt nature are obvious: illicit sex, perversion, promiscuity, idolatry, drug use, hatred, rivalry, jealousy, angry outbursts, selfish ambition, conflict, factions, envy, drunkenness, wild partying, and similar things. I’ve told you in the past and I’m telling you again that people who do these kinds of things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

Galatians 5:19‭-‬21 GW

Do you see any of your behaviors in that list of carnality?

If so, you need to confess your sins so that you can be healed.

It is imperative to your walk of faith to have an accountability team.

Originally, the family was God’s design for such accountability.

However, in today’s fallen world, too often family is not a safe place to be loved and accepted unconditionally.

That’s why we need the local church.

The local church is simply a family of faith.

We all believe that Jesus died to take the punishment for our sins.

We also believe that He has given us the Holy Spirit to empower us to live a God-pleasing life of faith.

There’s so much bad teaching and false doctrine being spread out there that people think that they have no power to resist the temptation to sin.

That’s why I get really bummed out when I do sin.

Because I know better.

And I know that God will provide a way of escape if I’m only patient and faithful enough to trust and believe that He will.

But, alas, we are human and prone to failure.

If we would walk in the power of the divine nature every second of every day, sin would be eradicated from our lives.

I know it’s possible because Jesus did it.

And the same power that rose Jesus from the grave lives in us.

When I sin, I’m quick to confess my sins to the trusted members of my accountability team.

They pray for me, reassure me that God (and they) still love me, and often we draw closer in our relationship because we know we need to be watching each other’s backs.

If the enemy of our souls can trick me, certainly the devil can trick you too.

How do we resist the devil and make him flee?

We abide in God’s presence.

Prayer, Bible reading, praise and worship, fellowship with other believers, all of these are good ways to abide in His presence.

What you think can be dangerous to your well being.

That’s why it’s important to constantly be renewing your mind with the Word of God.

I’m having to teach myself how to live by faith.

The role models I had in the past were not good ones.

I didn’t even realize how bad they were until I started to truly surrender to God’s will.

God wants to walk with us through every step of the day.

Think about Jesus Christ always.

Pray without ceasing.

Abide in Him.

Stay connected to the Source of life.

Sin separates us from God.

It breaks our fellowship and communion with the Creator of the universe.

I asked God this morning what He wants me to do with my life.

He said, “Follow Me.”

I’m not the leader of my life.

Christ is.

If you want to be free, you have to surrender.

God is all I care about.

I want to serve Him with my life.

And I enjoy teaching others how to live in Christ as well.

Here I am, 20 years of believing in my Savior Jesus Christ, and I feel like I’m only just now starting to get it.

You know why?

Because He wasn’t the Lord of my life prior.

Who sits on the throne of your heart?

Is it you and your ego?

Is it religious rules?

Or is it Jesus?

Living a life of faith is all about your relationship with God and with others.

Sometimes we can get so busy ministering to the needs of others that we neglect our own relationship with God.

That’s a very dangerous place to be.

Just look at how many high profile ministers have had public moral failures recently.

They had private failures long before the sins that took them out manifested.

I’m willing to bet that they didn’t confess their sins to their accountability teams, so God exposed their sin.

For some people, it takes going to prison for them to stop and realize they aren’t living life the right way.

Others can self correct before things get really out of control.

I work with a lot of ex-cons who now lead loving, productive lives.

Being a sinner isn’t a life sentence.

God’s grace provides a way out.

But you’ll never enter the doorway to Heaven, called Christ Our Lord, without admitting that you are a sinner in need of saving.

Let’s pray together.

Lord God in Heaven,

Save me from myself.

Save me from this wicked and corrupt generation.

Save me from my sins and the sins of the generations before me.

Break every lie of the enemy off my life that’s been spoken over me.

Fill me with Your Holy Spirit until I’m overflowing.

Lord, help me to know I’m always safe with You.

Let my life, my works, and my words always be a testimony of what God can do.

Take pride, fear and anger and remove them far from me.

Let me be your peace, your grace, your love and your mercy, today.

When people see me, let them see You.

God You are Our Father.

We love You.

We lay our lives down as an offering and pick up our crosses daily.

Thank You Jesus for saving us.

We look forward to seeing You face to face.

In the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ we pray.

Amen and so be it.

God loves you and so do I.

Keep up the good fight of faith, and I’ll see you soon, on one side or the other.

Blessings and peace to all.

Who Encourages The Encourager?

“The farmer plants the word. Some people are like seeds that were planted along the road. Whenever they hear the word, Satan comes at once and takes away the word that was planted in them. Other people are like seeds that were planted on rocky ground. Whenever they hear the word, they accept it at once with joy. But they don’t develop any roots. They last for a short time. When suffering or persecution comes along because of the word, they immediately fall ⌊from faith⌋. Other people are like seeds planted among thornbushes. They hear the word, but the worries of life, the deceitful pleasures of riches, and the desires for other things take over. They choke the word so that it can’t produce anything. Others are like seeds planted on good ground. They hear the word, accept it, and produce crops—thirty, sixty, or one hundred times as much as was planted.”

Mark 4:14‭-‬20 GW

I took a few weeks break from writing because there was too much revelation.

I couldn’t keep up.

It was a paradigm shift.

The ceiling is now the floor.

Meaning, what stopped us before is the stepping stone for a brighter tomorrow.

My job is to love people.

That’s what I’m good at.

I’m not interested in judging or condemning others, that’s not my job.

I can look back now and see how all the suffering I’ve experienced has equipped me with a compassionate heart.

I know what it’s like to suffer.

I know what it’s like to be rejected and abandoned.

I know what it’s like to live in poverty.

I know what it’s like to struggle with alcohol and drugs.

I don’t know what’s next, but I’m hopeful.

It’s a miracle that I have any faith at all.

I was raised by heathens who taught me to be a self centered jerk.

I was good at it, but it wasn’t fulfilling.

After I had my fill of carnal living, disobedience and rebellion, guess what happened?

God stepped in.

I can’t do life without Jesus Christ living inside of me.

I’ve tried everything else.

God’s way works.

Man’s ways are doomed to destruction.

You see this world we’re living in?

It’s only temporary.

When you die, someone else takes your stuff.

Stuff can’t save you.

Only Jesus saves.

I think the generations that are alive today have seen the effects of a greed based economy on our society.

And it’s not good.

We’re polluting and destroying our planet at an accelerated and unsustainable rate.

The system will fail.

There’s going to be some epic natural disasters unlike we’ve ever seen.

God uses disasters to remind us of what’s truly important.

Loving God and loving people.

How did you show God’s love today?

I like to encourage everyone I meet, but sometimes even I get discouraged.

But I never give up, I won’t abandon the faith.

I may struggle from time to time with this and that, but that doesn’t negate God’s redeeming love.

He knew perfectly well what He was doing when He created me as a sinner.

He knew after searching for truth everywhere else, I’d find the only love that satisfies my soul.

I walk around and hear people sharing Biblical truth on the streets.

We need to be planting seeds.

God will make them grow and we’re in for a bumper crop this year.

Get out there and love on some people.

You don’t even need to know who they are.

Sometimes it’s easier speaking the truth to strangers because you don’t have to worry about rejection.

If our churches were safe places for the saved to meet, imagine what would happen?

Christians are supposed to be safe people.

Do we claim God’s kindness for ourselves and exclude it for others?

God forbid.

But be forewarned, there are sharks, snakes and hustlers hiding in the sheep pen pretending to be sheep.

You will know them by their fruit.

Leave your judgement, pride and condemnation at the door.

God is love.

We’re recognized by our love.

You were created to love and be loved.

The Bible gives some very clear and concrete examples of what that looks like.

I forgot how to be selfish.

While that’s not good for my worldly stats it’s what lights a fire in me.

Everyone tells me the world needs more people like me.

I don’t care who you are, God loves you and so will I.

We need to be tapping the wells in people by spreading the Gospel.

We need to prime the pump with the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

And then stand back and watch them flow.

I’ve got some great brothers in the Lord who are sold out for Jesus.

Once you’ve experienced God, nothing else will satisfy.

May His peace keep you still during the storm.

He said He would never leave us nor forsake us.

And my God is not a liar.

Blessings to the brethren scattered throughout the Earth.

In Christ.

Amen.

Be the church you want to identify with.

Love or Selfishness

Blessed is the person who does not follow the advice of wicked people, take the path of sinners, or join the company of mockers.

Rather, he delights in the teachings of the Lord and reflects on his teachings day and night.

Psalms 1:1‭-‬2 GW

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.

Stubborn fools despise wisdom and discipline.

Proverbs 1:7 GW

“If you love me, you will obey my commandments. I will ask the Father, and he will give you another helper who will be with you forever. That helper is the Spirit of Truth. The world cannot accept him, because it doesn’t see or know him. You know him, because he lives with you and will be in you.

John 14:15‭-‬17 GW

I had a thought the other day.

God is all-powerful.

Therefore, only an insane person would rebel against the Lord.

Sin is disobedience.

Why do we sin?

Because of our selfish desires.

Some say that the only possible motives for any action are love or fear.

I disagree.

I say the only possible motives are love or selfishness.

Either you love God and His commandments or you love idolatry.

What is idolatry?

Worshipping something other than God.

It’s worshipping something that is created rather than the Creator.

Ultimately, life is worship.

You choose what you worship.

What do you spend all your time thinking about?

That’s what you worship in your thought life.

We have free will.

Make good decisions.

God loves us.

He doesn’t give us commandments to be a celestial killjoy.

On the contrary, His teachings give us life.

Sinners know that God hates sin, that’s why they resist and run from God.

That’s why we pray for them and share the Gospel.

Jesus died to set the sinners free.

Like you and me.

I was once lost and bound in my sin.

I was a slave to sin.

It was like some otherworldly power had control over me and I couldn’t help myself.

Then, at my lowest point, God stepped in.

Faith is a gift from God.

It’s obviously not a reward based on my works.

No, it seems that God likes to manifest His grace and mercy when we least deserve it just to prove how awesome and powerful His love is.

We serve an awesome God.

His love endures forever.

He commands us to love one another the way that He loved us.

Self-sacrificing love.

That’s the opposite of selfishness.

What are my motives?

We often are unaware of our own motivations because they act on a subconscious level.

What are my thoughts?

We can control our thoughts and emotions.

We must take every thought captive to the knowledge of Christ.

The Truth changes everything.

That’s why we’re commanded to first seek the Kingdom of God and all its righteousness.

Everything else will work out if we do that.

To be successful in this life, you need to have your priorities in order.

Success isn’t about material gain.

It’s about peace, love, joy and everything else that God’s Spirit freely gives us.

Success is free.

You simply have to choose it.

God already loves you.

You get to choose to love Him and everyone else.

If you love, you are successful.

If you are selfish, you are a failure.

A failure to obey the Word of the Lord.

May God in His infinite grace birth in you a new fire to love Him and His people and the lost.

And may love motivate everything that you do.

In the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Amen.