Stir Me Up Lord!

Stir Me Up Lord!

Friday, January 9, 2015


We listened, God spoke, we're moving - to an official website of our own:

(I'll make sure this link works when the new website is fully functional)

Don't worry, you can still follow us on Facebook 
and we'll be even easier to find!
Thanks for accompanying us on our journey, 
we look forward to seeing what God has in store for us!

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Friday, January 2, 2015

I'm All About Relationship, Not Religion

God sent Jesus so we could be reconnected with Him, so we could experience eternal salvation and restoration as rightful heirs to God's Kingdom.  We lost our legal rights to God's Kingdom when one man, Adam, sinned by giving over his dominion to the devil - all for an apple.  Eventually God gave us the Mosaic Law so we could redeem ourselves, but soon after man began creating their own laws and calling them religion - in doing so, they drew closer to their pious laws and further away from God.

“Yes,” said Jesus, “what sorrow also awaits you experts in religious law! For you crush people with unbearable religious demands, and you never lift a finger to ease the burden. (Luke 11:46 NLT)

Man made their own laws, the Pharisees crushed God’s people with their legalism and religion.  Jesus came to fulfill God’s laws not man’s law - that’s why they crucified Jesus; they were so far away from God that they were unable to recognize God’s only Son.  

 “Don’t misunderstand why I have come. I did not come to abolish the law of Moses or the writings of the prophets. No, I came to accomplish their purpose. (Matthew 5:17 NLT)

Anyone can put on a display for others to see, but God’s always been after our hearts as a sincere relationship.  God sees our intentions, He knows more about ourselves than we do. 

I want you to show love, not offer sacrifices. I want you to know me more than I want burnt offerings. (Hosea 6:6 NLT)

A parent tells their child not to touch the hot stove because they have wisdom and want to protect their child.  True obedience is done out of love, mutual love for one another.

You do not desire a sacrifice, or I would offer one.  You do not want a burnt offering. The sacrifice you desire is a broken spirit.  You will not reject a broken and repentant heart, O God.  (Psalms 51:16-17 NLT)

Jesus (one man, born of a virgin, but God in flesh) willingly went to the cross to save us all, not so we could be judged and condemned - but so we could be free from the binding laws of sin and death.  We were born sinners, but we were also born with the ability to reclaim our legal rights of life over death - to truly repent of our sins, to turn to Jesus the only way to the Father.  Our sins and religion were all nailed to the cross, leave them there - turn to God, make Jesus your Lord and Savior and take your inheritance as a Child of God! 

“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.  God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him. (John 3:16-17 NLT)

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Monday, December 22, 2014

Baby Steps

Don’t you realize that all of you together are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God lives in you? God will destroy anyone who destroys this temple. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple.

Stop deceiving yourselves. If you think you are wise by this world’s standards, you need to become a fool to be truly wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness to God. (1 Corinthians 3:16-19a NLT)

Today when I was reading a post from one of my Christian Homeschool groups on Facebook (Oy that’s a mouthful) I was amazed at the varying degrees of beliefs - but in a group of 7k+ people, that shouldn’t be a surprise.  There are so many denominations, each with their own guidelines and rules, then add in the mix of people at different levels of their walk in Christ - that some views are going to be weak (maybe even worldly) and stronger (maybe even more Biblical) than others.  But I suppose the one thing that surprised me the most - is how we perceive ourselves when we are accused of not being Christian enough.  

Of course right off the bat, you have to know that no one can judge another, as Christians we are to live a life worthy of the gift we have been given (Salvation).  Jesus told us to not to worry about the speck in our neighbors eye when we have a log in our own (Matthew 7:3-5).  So it’s hard to know where to draw the  line when we want to share how we interpret scripture - after all, isn’t that how different denominations came about?

If a believer that attends a different church denomination shares that they believe ‘x’ as a sin and someone from another denomination shares that they don’t believe ‘x’ as a sin because of this scripture - who are we to say that either are wrong or right?  According to denominations - they are in line with their church and we are in line with ours (beware any laws made by man, that isn’t from God’s Word - it can lead to a Pharisee mentality, Matthew 23). That being said, if someone is believing what we consider false doctrine, all we can do is say why we believe this or that.  We can’t change one person’s church denomination, it's the Holy Spirit's job to convict each believer of sin (the enemy is the one who condemns), but we can plant a seed.  How do we plant a seed, we speak with love and grace, but we stand by our own beliefs and may I suggest a lot of prayer.  

We can’t look at our fellow brother or sister and say they aren’t a ‘Christian’ because of ‘x, y, or even z’ - God’s the only one who can see their heart.  At the moment when we become new creations in Christ, the old is gone and the new has come (2 Corinthians 5:16-20) - to win hearts for Jesus, that's our first responsibility as the Body of Christ.

Once a person has been reborn (of the Spirit, John 3) as a baby Christian, they need to be fed and often with Spiritual milk - they aren’t ready for meat and potatoes yet.  As with all infants, we are gentle with them, we don’t want to hurt them - that means don’t force feed them something they aren’t ready for.  While reading 1 Corinthians 3 the part about Paul & Apollos planting and watering seeds - it made me think of my own beginning. I saw the first church I attended where I received my salvation as the seed that was planted, it wasn’t watered at that church - but 15 years later at my new church, it was watered & nurtured where God caused the seed to grow.  God knows our life from the end to the beginning, don’t think He doesn’t have a plan for our growth - He knows when and where we need pruning, watering, and nurturing.

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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Heal Our Land

Last I checked, this was still America, Land of the Free and Home of the Brave. Once we were a morally upright country that others looked to as a shining light in a dark world - now our leaders bow to dictators and terrorists; eagerly twisting and perverting our Constitution to their own desires and whims. The people cheer for thugs and criminals, while bashing those who risk their lives daily - the world has gone topsy turvy where what was once evil has become 'good' and those who stand for their beliefs are mocked and hated.

 Could it be a coincidence that also during this time, God has been forcibly removed from our nation?

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Monday, November 24, 2014

You are the Church

“Teacher, which is the most important commandment in the law of Moses?”
Jesus replied, “‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’  This is the first and greatest commandment.  A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments.” (Matthew 22:36-40 NLT)

Jesus showed that loving God is the key and that loving others will follow naturally; because if you’re loving God with all that you are, you can love all of God’s creations - that [love others] isn’t the same as getting along with [others].  I’m pretty sure that’s why Paul told us that we had to work on renewing our mind, since our flesh has a tendency to be very selfish and to get our bodies into submission - we have to conquer the flesh and change the way we think.

And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice—the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him.  Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.  (Romans 12:1-2 NLT)

This ‘living and holy sacrifice’ is like killing off our old ways, habits, thoughts and actions of our flesh.  Now that we are capable of seeing our past sins, we can recognize the holiness that is now in us; our spirit, as new creations in Christ - has cast light on the darkness and the struggle of the old (flesh) versus the new (spirit).  We see who we were (fleshly, decaying, and sinful) and what we are to become - that is, we are to become like Christ.  

Since you have heard about Jesus and have learned the truth that comes from him, throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes.  Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy.  (Ephesians 4:21-24 NLT)

Jesus spent His time healing the sick, loving the unlovable, and feeding the hungry - if you notice He did all these outside of the church walls.  That means, when we’re not in church - we ARE the church; but some also take that to mean that they don’t need to attend a church either.  Jesus was in the temple on the Sabbath - and today, although everyday is the Sabbath - we need to realize that as the church, we each have a part.  Jesus is the head of the church and just as we need the head - we also need the hands, the feet, the eyes and the ears. God’s plan for the church is perfect, but if you believe your way is better you can take that up with God.

Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church.  He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love. (Ephesians 4:15-16 NLT)

Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function,  so it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other.

In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. (Romans 12:4-6 NLT)

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Tuesday, November 18, 2014

In the Prayer Waiting Room

Sometimes we just have to stir ourselves us - especially when it seems that we’ve lost that loving feeling, where we just don’t feel like God is for us and that we’re in this life all on our own.  It’s in those times when more than ever - we need to pick up our Bibles and read them.  I don’t think I’ve ever read my Bible and thought that it was a waste of time - as a matter of fact, I can’t think of a time when I haven’t been encouraged after just a few minutes with God’s Word.  For those times when I’m especially down and out, turn up the Praise & Worship music - I don’t know anyone who can hear ‘Glory to God’ and keep a dark cloud over their head.  

I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]  (John 16:33 AMP)

I guess one of the keys to our spiritual walk, is to keep on walking.  We can’t give up because we haven’t seen our prayers answered, remember that God’s timing is perfect.  I try to remind myself when I’m going through an especially tough time, that the enemy is going to fight me the hardest right before my blessing breakthrough.  

Most importantly, be disciplined and stay on guard. Your enemy the devil is prowling around outside like a roaring lion, just waiting and hoping for the chance to devour someone. 
(1 Peter 5:8 Voice)

God is a great listener and He wants to spend time with us.   Although we can pray at anytime, anywhere - we should daily set some time aside to show God the honor He is due.  Have you ever needed to talk to someone and they kept picking up their phone, or repeatedly got interrupted by someone or something else - you just knew you didn’t have their undivided attention?  God is a jealous God - He is the creator of the Heavens and the Earth - He is Holy and deserves our best; not our leftovers.  So in those times when we feel we’re not being heard, that’s especially when we need to stop and evaluate our God time. 

Come close to the one true God, and He will draw close to you. Wash your hands; you have dirtied them in sin. Cleanse your heart, because your mind is split down the middle, your love for God on one side and selfish pursuits on the other. (James 4:8 Voice)

Sometimes we just need to be honest with ourselves.  No one likes to admit when they’re wrong - but one of the important parts of a relationship is being able to say you’re sorry.  I don’t know how we could walk with God without grace, since there is nothing we can do to deserve the righteousness of Christ.  Keeping my heart right with God isn’t possible unless I can sincerely confess my sins and ask for forgiveness. 

"When you stand to pray, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him. Then your Father in heaven will forgive your sins also. If you do not forgive them their sins, your Father in heaven will not forgive your sins.” (Mark 11:25-26 NLV) 

God is for us, He will never leave us nor forsake us.  We can boldly run to the throne of grace and call on our Father in Heaven, He loves us and He sent His Son to take our place - there’s no reason to doubt your miracle isn’t on it’s way!

“I tell you the truth, anyone who believes in me will do the same works I have done, and even greater works, because I am going to be with the Father. You can ask for anything in my name, and I will do it, so that the Son can bring glory to the Father.  Yes, ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it! (John 14:12-14 NLT)

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Sunday, September 28, 2014

Holy Spirit Guide Me

I've been wanting to listen to our church's sermons from Wednesday night's on the Holy Spirit, but haven't due to my schedule the past week plus I volunteer with our children's ministry every Wednesday.  Then today I watched a short teaching Joyce Meyer had on the Holy Spirit and after I finished watching that, I clicked over to my Facebook and saw John Bevere has just posted a status on the Holy Spirit as well: "In order to be intimate with the Holy Spirit, we must seek Him so that He will draw near to us."  So finally, taking the hint that I needed to seek the Holy Spirit; I turned off my computer, turned on my worship music, started praising God and began talking with Him -  willingly I sought Him out.  

 Come close to God and He will come close to you. [Recognize that you are] sinners, get your soiled hands clean; [realize that you have been disloyal] wavering individuals with divided interests, and purify your hearts [of your spiritual adultery]. (James 4:8 AMP)

Something I've learned about asking God where I've missed Him, or done the wrong thing, He doesn't hold back.  The first thing God showed me, was that my family's current difficulty was only a big problem, because we never brought it to God in prayer, BEFORE it became a problem!  Our heart was in the right place, of this I have no doubt; but if we had prayed about the situation, the Holy Spirit would have shown us that this was going to end up being painful.  We believed we were doing the Christian thing - being charitable, gracious and showing mercy; our actions might have been right, but since the people we were showing these traits to were (unknowing to us) dishonest, selfish, and downright criminal - it was going to lead to pain - pain that could have been avoided if we had prayed for discernment.  Since we had always prayed on the big important decisions, I just assumed our decision was the only choice because of our good intentions based on scripture and Christian characteristics - and that's where my lesson begins.  

Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God. (Philippians 4:6 AMP)

Did you catch that part - "...but in EVERY circumstance and in EVERYTHING..." we're supposed to pray.  It's not just the big stuff, anytime we've got to make a decision, check with God, His Holy Spirit will give us discernment.   I really love what the Voice translation has to say about this verse:

Don’t be anxious about things; instead, pray. Pray about everything. He longs to hear your requests, so talk to God about your needs and be thankful for what has come. (Philippians 4:6 Voice)

The video I watched with Joyce Meyer had Pastor Reinhard Bonnke (he's an amazing Evangelist whose ministry has brought over 74 million souls to salvation in Africa over the last 20 years!), his explanation of the Holy Spirit through his study of the scriptures is this: the Holy Spirit is God in action here on Earth and that the annointing of the Holy Spirit is our faith confirmed by the presence of the Holy Spirit in one's life.  My big take away from this definition was - action, the Holy Spirit can't help me if I'm not actively seeking His advice.  Jesus told the diciples that it's 'profitable', that He (Jesus) leave, so God can send the Advocate (John 16:7).  The actual Greek word is 'Parakletos' or helper and comforter.  I love what Jesus says here in the Amplified version:

And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Intercessor, Advocate, Strengthener, and Standby), that He may remain with you forever—
The Spirit of Truth, Whom the world cannot receive (welcome, take to its heart), because it does not see Him or know and recognize Him. But you know and recognize Him, for He lives with you [constantly] and will be in you. (John 14:16-17 AMP)

Once you have the Holy Spirit in your life, He never goes away, He's there to stay; you can run away from Him, but that doesn't mean He's left you.  If you've found yourself in a big ol' mess, that doesn't mean your helper has said, "Well, now you've gone and done this, it's all on you. I'm not helping you, you got yourself in this mess and you can get yourself out of it!".  No, that's something we might say, or the enemy might try to convince you; but God doesn't think that way!  

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord.
    “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine.

For just as the heavens are higher than the earth,
    so my ways are higher than your ways
    and my thoughts higher than your thoughts. (Isaiah 55:8-9 NLT)

God loved us so much that He didn't spare His only Son, so we could have an everlasting life, He doesn't give up on us because of a mistake or even our sins (He wants us to repent of them and learn from them though).  He knows our hearts, He knows our intentions, He's not only the God of love, but the God of mercy and grace!  Once you've made Jesus your Lord and Savior, there is nothing that we can get ourselves into, that He can't get us out of; there is nothing the enemy can do to us, that God can't undo.  There is nothing that the Creator of the Earth and Heavens can not do.  Most followers of Christ, know Romans 8:28, but I just fell in love with this verse all over again after reading verses 26 and 27.  

And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words.  And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will.  And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. (Romans 8:26-28 NLT)

Child of God, there is nothing that God can't turn into a blessing - He has a plan for you, He has a purpose for you.  He is the same God, yesterday, today and tomorrow - He can still part the waters, He can still bring the dead back to life, and He can still bring you to your Promised Land!

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. (Hebrews 13:8 AMP)

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