With His Stripes
Backstory: when I was a kid, I had eye surgery for detached retina (which is often identified by noticing “floaters” or “flashing light” in your vision). In recent years, I’ve seen an increase, so a little over a year ago, I went to an ophthalmologist to get it checked out, and all was well.
The Issue: This year, at my annual check up, they spotted an “eye freckle” on my eye and became concerned enough to refer me to a retina specialist. The reason is that eye freckles are an accumulation of melanin, just like skin freckles, which could be cancerous (melanoma), and eye cancer can easily lead to death if it metastasizes, or the need for eye removal because it is such a difficult area to treat. And I’ve been waiting over a month for this follow up appointment.
Fears: Of course I’ve had some scary thoughts, from losing my eye to death. Since then every eye flash or floater has been nerve-wracking. It seems like as I’ve gotten closer to the appointment date, I’m suddenly seeing a lot of things online about will and estate planning, and life insurance, as well as material about blindness. Randomly, I see a story about Tiny Lister (R.I.P.) and how he had a glass eye. And lastly, the negative imaginations/thoughts, have been increasing.
But God: Thankfully, God is good! I’ve been constantly challenging those thoughts because the Word says to cast down and capture them into the obedience of Christ (2 Cor 10:5). I’ve been constantly speaking the Word over the situation, that with His stripes I am healed (Isaiah 53:5) and no weapon formed against me shall prosper (Isaiah 54:17), and declaring healing over and over – and even with that the fearful thoughts kept coming, an ongoing fight for faith while walking through this valley of the SHADOW of death. I also had family strong in faith praying as well.
With the good repost from the doctor of no cancer found, I am very thankful. It is not by my action or might though, but because God is good! And, the blood of the savior, Yeshua Ha’Mashiach, has paid the price. The blessing of healing is to the glory of God, and may His holy name be praised.
Responsibility and Authority
Check out our newest video message about how our responsibility of another person or thing ties directly to our authority of that person or thing.
Imagine being lost, alone, and afraid, hearing a sound and wondering, “who’s there?” It is a sad, lonely, and scary thought.
Now, imagine never having to feel that way….
By faith, God gives us comfort in His Word that we do not ever have to feel that way.
“Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” ~Hebrews 13:5 KJV
“For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” ~Romans 8:38-39 KJV
“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” ~Psalm 23:4 KJV
So, whenever we feel like we are lost, alone, and afraid, this is where our faith comes in. Feed your faith daily, and in those moments, remain rest assured. The Lord is with you.
How To Let Go
I heard someone say that she wished her loved ones would just forget about the wrong that she had done and move forward. The idea is a nice idea, that when we do wrong others would forgive and forget. In fact, the first part of that is simply to forgive. But, as hard as it may be to forgive, it is even harder to forget.
You will actually often here people say, “I do forgive you, but I will NEVER forget!”
The Word of God often tells us to forgive. In fact, it says in Matthew 18:20-22, “Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times? Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.”
It also says, “And if he trespass against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive him.” (Luke 17:4) So, we can clearly see that forgiveness is essential. But, let’s get to this business about forgetting.
Forgetting something is the equivalent of something dying out. Habits, knowledge, ideas, etc., are established by constant repetition of them, and likewise, they end by constant neglect of them. If you want for people to forget about something, you just discontinue the behaviors that remind them of it. Likewise, if you want to forget something that someone did to you, you also have to starve it by stop talking about and thinking about it. (If you want to know how to stop thinking about it, you must learn to catch it at first thought and challenge/rebuke it with a counter thought against it – see 2 Corinthians 10:5)
The more that those reminders are neglected and REMOVED (if it’s a behavior), the more it will start fading from memory until eventually it will be so far in the back of your or their head that it seems weird to even bring it up anymore. Then, just like in Job 18:16-17, the past “…roots shall be dried up beneath, and above shall his branch be cut off. His REMEMBERANCE SHALL PERISH from the earth, and he shall have no name in the street.”
Starve the memory of your past mistakes by eliminating the behaviors that surrounded those mistakes (true repentance), and in doing so, the memory of those mistakes will fade into oblivion. And then though some people who have no life of their own may still try to bring it up beyond that, it would be so awkward on them because you are so much more different than that mistake once made.
Do Them All
None of your God-given talents are meant to be wasted or muffled! You may be an evangelist, but have a passion and skill for hip-hop. Some would call this a conflict of interest, but the truth is that God gave you both your callings and your gifts, even those that some people would find questionable because of their limited traditional understanding that is based more on tradition than the Word itself. It is your God-given purpose, however, for you to use both.
This is where it is going to get sticky though…
Some people feel like their skill is sexual, or violent, or some other taboo. But even with that, there is a purpose. Your sexual prowess was given to you not to be loose and “spread the love” but rather that you would be a gift to your spouse in support of his or her great mission in life. Your violent gift is not about being criminal but rather making you a warrior who can protect the weaker people who don’t have the ability to protect themselves. And likewise, your other”taboo” gifts also have an honorable purpose to use them for instead of the taboo purposes that they are normally associated with.
Your gifts and skills are not meant to be muffled! Use them, no matter what they are, in service to God’s will and plan. Your superior drug selling skills (sampling, marketing, selling, financials) can be used honorably in terms of entrepreneurship to take care of your family the right way. Former prisoners, as inventive as they can be, can use those same skills to now invent things to save lives instead of to take them. None of your skills are in vain. Use them for the greater good, and God’s glory.
They were given to you as gifts. Enjoy them, and allow them to make room for you. Remember…
Proverbs 18:16 – A man’s gift maketh room for him, and bringeth him before great men.
Mistake of Correcting Unbelievers
Trying to teach people to trust God’s discipline and correction without first demonstrating and giving them an appreciation for His love is like expecting someone to pet a growling, barking dog just because you told them it was friendly.
No one is going to accept discipline, being told certain actions are wrong, when they have no comprehension of the love reasoning behind it.
It is the same way with children. Without a foundation of love and trust, they will automatically assume you are trying to limit them when you tell them “no” rather than to protect them out of love. And with their lack of experience-gained wisdom that you have, there is no way they can truly understand your reasoning; it has to come from trust/faith, just as following God’s restrictions come from trust that He had a perfect reason for His guidelines, and it is all for the greater good.
Stop losing your peace because of things that don’t matter in the first place. Your mind is always so occupied by unfruitful concerns about who is saying what about you, what negative things the future holds, what happened back then, and the mess you’re dealing with right now.
When you are consumed in your mind, so shall your reality be also. Your mind must be freed in order to be free indeed in life. Change your mind, and you change your reality.
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
Learn to ignore what doesn’t matter. This is a basic principle of meditation. Keep your mind focused on that which is worthwhile, without reaction but just observation, and gain control over the ideas and thoughts you accept and reject.
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.
2 Corinthians 10:5
Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
Stop being controlled by your thoughts, but learn to master them, and as you master your thoughts from within, you master your life externally.
Romans 13:8 – Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law.
You don’t owe anyone any explanations about yourself or anything in your life. It’s not their business! If they truly were concerned, they’d simply ask you if you’d like them to pray for you and leave it at that, but because they are vipers posing as caterpillars, wolves posing as sheep, they want to know each and every detail about you and your situation so that they can use it against you at the earliest and most convenient opportunity, often just for the sake of gossip or spite. You don’t own them anything, but to love them!
Likewise, don’t allow yourself to, or keep placing yourself in a situation to, have to constantly owe someone back for something. Leave the debt alone when you can. Learn to save, hustle, or invest until you can obtain. The instant gratification is often not worth the extended burden to keep it. It’s okay to do without it, or find another alternative. Take action to start reducing what you owe to others, because if anything, you owe it to YOURSELF to be able to live freely and unburdened by unnecessary debt.
Either way, take time to understand, learn, and know what you truly need, don’t need, should owe, and should not owe, for when it is all said and done, only love is essential.
Know Where Your Blessings Come From
I sit and I think back to some old hymn and think of some lady in the choir passionately singing, “don’t forget where your blessings come from!” The way this statement is normally presented leans towards the understanding that “God is blessing you, so don’t forget and become cocky thinking that it is you.” The danger in this way of thinking is that people automatically assume that if they are getting more money, new job positions, etc., that it is undoubtedly coming from God, and that is the danger.
Just because you got what you feel is a blessing, doesn’t mean that it came from God. We need to understand that God is not going to bless mess. God is not going to bless us as we strive for sin, as that would be counter to His very own character. So if the blessing does not come from God, where does it come from? You guessed it, Satan. You don’t believe me? Let’s look at scripture then, such as when Yeshua (Jesus) was tempted in the wilderness.
Luke 4:5-7 states: 5 The devil led him up to a high place and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. 6 And he said to him, “I will give you all their authority and splendor; it has been given to me, and I can give it to anyone I want to. 7 If you worship me, it will all be yours.”
Satan actually went as far as to offer the son of God all power and splendor if He would worship him. The devil acknowledges that all of that splendor has been given to him to give to whomever he wants, and if he is willing to try and tempt that powerful Christ (who even outranks him in the Spirit realm), how much more is he willing to tempt YOU?
Don’t get me wrong! God does bless His children. But, because God is just, He’s not going to bless you for disobedience. Every blessing God offers is contingent with righteousness, such as in Psalm 5:12, where it states, “Surely, Lord, you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favor as with a shield.” The key to God’s blessings, however, are that you are righteous, seeking Him, and living according to His ways.
So, if you’re not living for God, and yet and still you are: getting money, getting paid, being surrounded by friends, getting new jobs, etc., you may want to question where that is coming from. Satan is more than happy and capable, as we see in scripture, of giving you the pleasures of the world for worshiping him. If your life is full of lying, cheating, stealing, hatred, lust, fornication, hurting the innocent, and all other types of wickedness and yet you are still “balling,” then you can typically rest assured that there is a “god” that is “blessing” you but it’s not the holy one, rather the prince of this world (John 16:11).
On that note, I do implore you, to consider where your blessings come from! Consider not only so that you will remain humble in the blessings that God give you, but also that you will distinguish from that which is NOT from God. For if you are being gifted by the enemy, what value of a gift is it but rather a curse. Everything that glitters is not gold, and everything that you get is not from God. Be smart, be holy, and be blessed… truly!
By the grace of God,
No More Foolishness
Proverbs 26:4-5 “Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him. Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit.”
There are some people who are just so content in their ignorance, hatred, wickedness, self-justification, etc., that the wisest of all statements would mean nothing to them. In such cases, don’t waste your breath in trying to teach, for their pride would not allow them to receive it. It would be wasted value, which is why the Bible tells you to do things like “shake the dust off your feet” for those who reject light, and:
“Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.” (Matthew 7:6)
In such, don’t allow such a fool to rile you up in anger and become entangled in dispute, for their ignorance is not worth your peace. Simply keep it moving!
Only in those cases whereas to let the foolish know that you are NOT fooled by their foolery, should you answer them according to it, that they may be humbled, and at least for a moment in you, realize they they can’t always get over on everyone. Chances are, they will then go back and trash talk about you because despite the haughty words, it does burn them that you rejected their ignorance, and their insults then become what soothes them, yet, for you, your peace should remain.
Overall however, let not the foolish drag you into their ignorance, for it is like a raging fire that shall sooner or later consume them; don’t be entangled then, that you shall also get burned. Ignore ignorance, and flee foolishness… it is not WORTH your time!