Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Be The Gift

A couple of years ago I saw an advertisement for Victoria’s Secret that said, ‘Be The Gift.’ Of course, it was an ad of a woman dressed in VS items and on top of her head she had a big red bow. The ad was suggesting something that we really don’t need to go into here, but I will say this, God can turn everything around and use it for His glory if we’re open to receive.

Certainly, when it comes to giving no one can outdo God. Bow or no bow. Big or little. God gave His only Son. Really think about that for a moment. How many of us, if we had 10 sons, would give one up? But God gave His ONLY One, Jesus Christ, to die for us. God loved us so much (love is demonstrated), that He gave. He saw the sin in the world and in spite of how holy He is and the fact that He HAS to turn away from it, He yet wanted to do something about it. Hear this… in spite of how “holy” we are and that we SHOULD turn away from sin, we STILL should want to do something about it. Here’s a suggestion, maybe intercede? But anyway, God saw a need and He met that need by giving of Himself.

My husband, Minister Jeff, did an Encouraging Word just today called “Today, Love Someone” and in it he said that love is expressed through giving. (I will say it again, love is demonstrated). God loved and God gave. He presented us with a gift. The gift of Jesus Christ, Who came as a newborn baby to grow up as we do, to live a sinless life, and to die. Just so we might have eternal life. God started all the gift-giving over 2000 years ago with Jesus and as we celebrate Christmas, we should keep in mind the tremendous sacrifice that Jesus made. The awesome gift that God gave us. The Bible says that every good and every perfect gift comes from above. And it all started with Jesus. The Word is true. What a good and perfect gift He is!!!

This is the time of the year that many celebrate the birth of Jesus, born into the world on what we have to come to call Christmas Day. But we should also celebrate Jesus death and resurrection. Because without Him completing the work that God sent Him to do, without Him “being the gift,” we would not have eternal life.

And that alone should be enough to move us to want to give something back to Him. And as I think about that Victoria Secret ad, “Be The Gift” that is what I believe God wants us to do. BE THE GIFT. And we can do that by living according to the Word, living the way God would have us to, responding the way that shows forth His goodness in the earth.

We can be the gift by allowing the Word to take root in our hearts, because when we do that the manifestation of the Spirit of God shall come. We can be the gift when we forgive, when we can pardon the sins of others (and I mean really look past them, faults and all). We can be the gift, when we smile at someone, or say a kind word instead of a harsh one. The Bible says soft words turn away wrath.

We can be the gift, that good and perfect gift, when we let the Spirit of God have His way in us and through us. And as we do that, we, just like God did over 2000 years ago, can present the world with a gift. The gift of salvation. The gift of Jesus Christ, and all He has to offer.

So I encourage you to be the gift, show forth the gift that you have received, that someone else might want to receive it also.

God is good, y’all and He’s real.

A servant of the Lord,
Sis. E

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Do You Hear What I Hear?

Do you hear what I hear is an old Christmas song sung for many years by many people. There are a few versions that I like, particularly, CeCe Winans, Whitney Houston and Yolanda Adams. After hearing the song so many times and so many years and for the first time a couple of weeks ago, after actually listening to the words, God gave me a real appreciation of it. I had never realized what the song was saying. You know how you can hear things and just not listen to it. And it’s strange because I actually really liked the song, but I never knew the meaning of it until now.

But the song sings of the birth of Jesus Christ and what His birth would bring. Each verse leads up to the next.

The first verse speaks of the night wind talking to the little lamb, asking him (the little lamb) if he sees what he sees, way up in the sky. A star, that looks like it’s dancing in the night, with a tail as big as a kite. And what the night wind is talking about and is seeing is the star that shone above the manger. Can you see that?
Then the little lamb sees what the night wind is speaking of and he shares it with the shepherd boy and he asks the shepherd boy if he hears what he hears. A ringing in the sky, a song that is high above the trees, with a voice as big as the sea. And what the little lamb is talking about and hearing are the angels that have announced that Jesus was born and are now singing and rejoicing over His birth. Can you hear that?

Then the shepherd boy hears what the little lamb heard and he shares it with the mighty king and he asks the mighty king, which I believe is representative of the wise men, do you know what I know. The shepherd boy says in your palace, and makes a point to say warm palace, mighty king, do you know what I know. That a Child has been born and He is shivering in the cold (while you’re warm, king), the Child shivers in the cold. And then the shepherd boy says, let us bring Him silver and gold. And I believe that the silver represents the basic need and the gold is the extra. (Like Jesus tells us we shall have milk and honey. Our need met and our desires). So the shepherd boy says, do you know what I know. Do you know that?

Then the mighty king catches on what the night wind saw, and the little lamb heard and the shepherd boy knew and he goes to the people, everywhere (us)… and tells them to listen to what he says… And he says to us, pray for peace, everywhere.. because the Child that was born that is sleeping in the night was bringing us (people everywhere) goodness and light.

The love of God and the light of the world. Jesus Christ. The Word revealed.
What God has spoken to me through this song, back then and now is for us to go, to share, to pass on Jesus. His love. His peace. His joy. His Word. Why He came.
Help someone today to see what you see, to hear what you hear, and know not only what you know, but WHO you know. Jesus. Encourage them to listen to what you say, to what God says, that Christ the Savior IS born and because of that we have and they can have eternal life.

I hear the Lord… do you?

God is good and He’s real in everything.

A servant of the Lord,
Sis. E

Thursday, December 3, 2009

God WILL Come Down!

Genesis 11:5 reads, “But the Lord came down to see the city and tower which the sons of men had built.” This Scripture and a few others have been speaking to my heart recently. Specifically, ‘the Lord came down.’

There is nothing that God does not know but yet in His omniscience (all embracing knowledge) He makes it a point to come down and see what is going on. And not only that but to do something about it. Side note. Sometimes we go and see what is going on with something and when we get there we can’t or many times, we don’t, do a thing about it. BUT GOD. Not God. If He’s coming down to see about something, you better believe that He is going to do something.

But anyway, in this particular instance, God decided to come down and see what the people were doing. He knew that they were building a tower, but if they were allowed to keep doing that, there would be no stopping them and it would open the door to all sorts of things for them to do. And that was not good because their motives were not right. Know this that if you are in agreement, if you are WITH one accord, there is extreme power at your disposal. We don’t truly understand how much we can do if we would simply get in agreement, especially WITH the Word of God. But they were not operating under the commandment of God, so because of that God had to come down to confuse their language and break their communication. And the work ceased because they could no longer understand each other. Hear this, the work ceases because we can no longer understand each other… you are on one page and I am on another. But that’s a message by itself, so we will save that for another time.

God came down when Sodom and Gomorrah became evil. The Bible says “And the LORD said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous; I will go down now, and see whether they have done altogether according to the cry of it, which is come unto me; and if not, I will know.” (Genesis 18:20-21) And God came down and we know the rest of the story He had a discussion with Abraham and destroyed the whole city but not until after He knew Abraham was safe. God will come down and bring judgment with Him, but He will give His people the opportunity to be saved from it. Lot’s wife had the opportunity but because she looked back when she wasn’t supposed to, she was not saved. Hear this. You have opportunity to be delivered from some things but because you choose to look back (backslide) you are not. Jesus came down to save us (and deliver us)! Hallelujah!

God comes down to speak to us. He comes down to encourage us. He came down and visited with Abraham to personally pronounce the blessing upon His life. He wanted Abraham to know how He was going to make possible the covenant He had given to Abraham. He came down and spoke to Abraham to let Him know that he and his wife Sarai would bear a son and through his son, all the nations of the world would be blessed.

Jesus came down from heaven to comfort the two disciples on the road to Emmaus. The pre-incarnate Jesus came down to stand in the midst of the fiery furnace with Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego. The Bible says there were four men in that furnace. He came down to shut the lion’s mouth when Daniel was in the lion’s den.

We have to know that in the very same way God comes down for us. He cares about us. He loves us so much that when we find ourselves someplace we don’t need to be (and I am talking spiritually for the most part), thinking things that we don’t need to be thinking about, worrying about stuff, being afraid and doubtful, losing faith and hope, He comes down. When someone has mistreated us, caused us to lose sleep, to cry, to hurt, God sees that and He will come down and address it. (Remember Aaron and Miriam who spoke about the man of God, Moses… God came down and had a little talk with them).

We have to know that He WILL come down for us and that He does. Because He lets us know when He does. He’ll send someone to come and speak a Word to us when we thought the world forgot about us. He’ll send messages of hope through the internet and emails and text messages, just when we need it. And not a second too late, we’ll receive an envelope in the mail or cash delivered through the hand of a stranger. That’s God coming down.

Someone we have been praying for, who the doctors have said there is nothing else we could do, suddenly gets better. And it’s immediate. Instantaneous HEALING! Miraculous healing! That’s God coming down and doing something about what the doctors have said, letting the world know, “Let God be true and every man be a liar.” When there is turmoil and chaos all around us and all we want is some peace, then all of a sudden a Word is spoken and silence fills the air. That’s God. That’s the peace of God that surpasses all understanding. That’s Him stepping in the situation.

Even though God knows everything, God chooses to come down to get a closer look at what is going on. And when He does, He judges the matter firsthand. And in some instances it brings judgment, and in some, comfort. But God loves you and He WILL come down for you. You are important to Him and worth coming down for. Know that today. I do.

God is good and He is real.

A servant of the Lord,

Sis. E