Friday, August 16, 2019


Today's "My Utmost For His Highest" by Oswald Chambers goes right along with our topic from yesterday!

Does He Know Me?

He calleth…by name. — John 10:3

When I have sadly misunderstood Him? (John 20:17). It is possible to know all about doctrine and yet not know Jesus. The soul is in danger when knowledge of doctrine outsteps intimate touch with Jesus. Why was Mary weeping? Doctrine was no more to Mary than the grass under her feet. Any Pharisee could have made a fool of Mary doctrinally, but one thing they could not ridicule out of her was the fact that Jesus had cast seven demons out of her; yet His blessings were nothing in comparison to Himself. Mary “saw Jesus standing and knew not that it was Jesus”; immediately she heard the voice, she knew she had a past history with the One who spoke. “Master”!

When I have stubbornly doubted? (John 20:27). Have I been doubting something about Jesus — an experience to which others testify but which I have not had? The other disciples told Thomas that they had seen Jesus, but Thomas doubted — “Except I shall see…, I will not believe.” Thomas needed the personal touch of Jesus. When His touches come, or how they come, we do not know; but when they do come they are indescribably precious. “My Lord and my God”!

When I have selfishly denied Him? (John 21:15-17). Peter had denied Jesus Christ with oaths and curses, and yet after the Resurrection Jesus appeared to Peter alone. He restored him in private, then He restored him before the others. “Lord, Thou knowest that I love Thee.”

Have I a personal history with Jesus Christ? The one sign of discipleship is intimate connection with Him, a knowledge of Jesus Christ which nothing can shake.

The MOST important part of our lives SHOULD be our intimate fellowship with JESUS! When we make time with HIM our #1 priority, there is NOTHING that the enemy can successfully trick us with!  We will ALWAYS be a step ahead of him! COUNT ON IT! Here is Hillsong UNITED with one of my very favorite new songs called "Echoes (Til We See The Other Side)":

Shalom in Him!

Thursday, August 15, 2019


We read 2 Timothy 3 in our Spoken Word Bible Reading Plan for today and it is such an accurate picture of OUR world! Verses 1-5:
But understand this, that in the last days will come (set in) perilous times of great stress and trouble [hard to deal with and hard to bear]For people will be lovers of self and [utterly] self-centered, lovers of money and aroused by an inordinate [greedy] desire for wealth, proud and arrogant and contemptuous boasters. They will be abusive (blasphemous, scoffing), disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy and profane[They will be] without natural [human] affection (callous and inhuman), relentless (admitting of no truce or appeasement); [they will be] slanderers (false accusers, troublemakers), intemperate and loose in morals and conduct, uncontrolled and fierce, haters of good[They will be] treacherous [betrayers], rash, [and] inflated with self-conceit. [They will be] lovers of sensual pleasures and vain amusements more than and rather than lovers of GodFor [although] they hold a form of piety (true religion), they deny and reject and are strangers to the power of it [their conduct belies the genuineness of their profession]. Avoid [all] such people [turn away from them].

Although some of these things have been occurring over all time, ALL of them, taken together, are happening NOW! And NOT just in nations with tyrannical dictators, but in EVERY nation, and especially in OURS! What SHOULD we do? Our first instruction from God is to AVOID them! That means that we are NOT to intimately associate with them. But it does NOT mean that we don't pray for them, continue to preach the Gospel and to speak the TRUTH! Remember, it is ONLY the knowing the TRUTH that will set people free! And now let's look at verses 14-17:
14 But as for you, continue to hold to the things that you have learned and of which you are convinced, knowing from whom you learned [them], 15 And how from your childhood you have had a knowledge of and been acquainted with the sacred Writings, which are able to instruct you and give you the understanding for salvation which comes through faith in Christ Jesus [through the [leaning of the entire human personality on God in Christ Jesus in absolute trust and confidence in His power, wisdom, and goodness] . 16 Every Scripture is God-breathed (given by His inspiration) and profitable for instruction, for reproof and conviction of sin, for correction of error and discipline in obedience, [and] for training in righteousness (in holy living, in conformity to God’s will in thought, purpose, and action), 17 So that the man of God may be complete and proficient, well fitted and thoroughly equipped for every good work.

AMEN! Remember that old, but powerful chorus: "Turn your eyes upon JESUS. Look full in His wonderful face. And the things of earth will grow strangely dim, in the LIGHT of HIS GLORY and GRACE!" Here, to help you do that, is Hillsong UNITED with "Whole Heart":

Shalom in Him!

Wednesday, August 14, 2019


We read 2 Timothy 2 in today's Spoken Word Bible Reading Plan. Look at verse 15

15 Study and be eager and do your utmost to present yourself to God approved (tested by trial), a workman who has no cause to be ashamed, correctly analyzing and accurately dividing [rightly handling and skillfully teaching] the Word of Truth.

I remember being told by a few people when I was first born again that only the Pastor can understand the Bible. I was SO blessed to have already been taught by good Bible teachers that I should never go to church or to a meeting WITHOUT my Bible! It HAS been given to each and every believer to KNOW Him and His Word! Paul said this in Philippians 3:10 and it is MY determined purpose, also! 

10 [For my determined purpose is] that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His Person more strongly and more clearly], and that I may in that same way come to know the power outflowing from His resurrection

AMEN! 2 Timothy 2:15 is telling us that we SHOULD study! Diligently! Part of study is meditation. Joshua 1:8 is one of the very best verses on this! 

This Book of the Law shall not depart out of your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, that you may observe and do according to all that is written in it. For then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall deal wisely and have good success.

So, I hope that if YOU have not yet put your whole heart into learning God's Word and His Ways, that you WILL make that decision now! It takes a diligent commitment and it takes time, but every layer of TRUTH that we can add to our firm foundation in the Word of God will ONLY ever help us to BE all that God intends for u! AMEN! Here is Hillsong with "Behold (Then Sings My Soul)":

Shalom in Him!

Tuesday, August 13, 2019


Rick Renner's "Sparkling Gems From The Greek - Volume 2" is very good for today! 

Flattering Words

For neither at any time used we flattering words, as ye know, nor a cloak of covetousness; God is witness. — 1 Thessalonians 2:5

As Paul shared his priorities and motives in ministry, he also talked about what didn’t motivate him in ministry — namely financial gain. In First Thessalonians 2:5, he wrote, “For neither at any time used we flattering words, as ye know, nor a cloak of covetousness; God is witness.” In this verse, Paul specifically dealt with the issue of money in ministry, and he emphatically conveyed that his motives for ministry were not financial gain from those who followed his ministry. Instead, the apostle strove to keep his motives for ministry pure.

If Paul hadn’t made this his first motive — to please God and not man — he would have been vulnerable to becoming a man-pleaser and using “flattering words” to exact some kind of selfish gain from the people he ministered to. But Paul’s primary focus was on pleasing the One who called him and who sent him to the precious people in Thessalonica.

The same quality should be true of us. Our motives for serving God should be pure and unadulterated, rooted solely in a heart desire to please Him through the fruits of our labor as we do what He asks us to do.

Let’s study verse 5 more closely. What exactly does it mean for someone to use “flattering words”? This phrase comes from the Greek word kolakeia, which means to “butter up” someone by saying things he or she wants to hear. Usually, when someone “butters up” another person, he is putting himself in a position to take advantage of that individual. The word kolakeia — “flattering words” — also means to say things with an insincere motive.

In other words, when you’re using kolakeia, your words are just a vehicle to get you what you want. They hold no genuine meaning and are spoken for no other reason than that.

But in these two verses in First Thessalonians 2, Paul was saying he didn’t do that to the congregation in Thessalonica. He didn’t butter them up so he could get something out of them. He didn’t just say good things about them or tell them how wonderful they were to receive some kind of selfish gain. Paul wasn’t insincere in his dealings with the believers in the Thessalonian church; instead, he spoke truthfully to them as he interacted with them and ministered to them.

Now let’s look at the next phrase Paul used in this passage: “cloak of covetousness.” The word “cloak” is the Greek word prophasis, which can be translated as a pretense or something that is phony or not real. The whole idea behind this word prophasis is that a person will be whatever he needs to be to receive some kind of gain from others.

Prophasis describes a person who is constantly changing, not according to his conviction, but according to how he can gain something from someone else. This is why the Bible calls it a “cloak.” It is a covering or a pretense — something that isn’t real.

The Bible calls this cloak a “cloak of covetousness.” I believe that a better translation would be “a cloak for the sake of covetousness.” In this verse where Paul wrote, “For neither at any time used we flattering words…nor a cloak of covetousness,” he was actually referring to the exploitation of people for gain.

The word “covetousness” in First Thessalonians 2:5 is translated from the Greek word pleonexia, which is used in this scripture to describe monetary greed. The word pleonexia carries a few ideas that tend to build upon each other, as in a progression.
First, it simply means to have more.

Second, it portrays the concept of expanding — to have more and more and more.

Third, it carries the idea of overreaching for more than you need.

Fourth, it depicts control. In other words, at some point, you aren’t reaching out for the thing you want more of anymore — now that thing has reached out and grabbed you. Now it has gained control of you.

This word “covetousness” describes a man who has money in the heart. He “thinks” money. In fact, he thinks about money almost all the time. He eats, drinks, and sleeps money! Money becomes just about all he wants to talk about. When he goes to bed at night, he’s thinking about money — and when he gets out of bed in the morning, his first thoughts turn to money. When he talks to people, he sees currency on their foreheads! He’s constantly looking for more money, and he sees everything — every encounter, every relationship, and everything he does — as an opportunity to turn a buck.

It is this attitude of covetousness that Paul emphatically rejected. His motive for preaching was not to pretend to be something he wasn’t in order to make financial gain from the people God had given him to care for and minister to. And neither can it be our motivation for serving others! Furthermore, people are smart — and if they sense that you are after their money and not their hearts, it won’t be long until they will send you on your way!

So make the decision today that you will always be someone who speaks from an authentic, pure heart and seeks only to edify the listener and glorify God, never to receive monetary gain or advantage for yourself. As you make that your constant practice, people will come to know that they can trust the source! They’ll receive your words as genuine, and the power of love behind your words will minister to people’s hearts as God intends!

AMEN! Read this one over and over, allowing Holy Spirit to show you where you need to improve in your walk with Him and in your fellowship with Him! He SHOULD BE the most important person in your life AND the One you are closet to! Here is Hillsong UNITED with "Whole Heart":

Shalom in Him!

Monday, August 12, 2019


Today's devotional from Jerry Savelle is a great one!


I’m sure everyone has been wronged at one time or another. Because of this, we all have a decision to make. We can either let that wrong affect us the rest of our lives and cause us to sit down and wallow in pity. Or we can get up, wipe ourselves off, forgive and keep going.

“Be gentle and ready to forgive; never hold grudges. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.” (Colossians 3:13, TLB).

That’s the choice we have to make, and it is never too late to make the right choice!

You cannot expect any change or real growth in your life until you forgive and let go. Give it all to God. Do not pick up that load of anger, resentment, hurt, shame, guilt or whatever it may be that you have been struggling with.

It’s not easy to forgive when you have been treated badly or abused in some way, but it is necessary. We have no choice if we want our Heavenly Father to forgive us of our wrongdoings.

You do not have to suffer the rest of your life for past mistakes or for other’s past mistakes. Your past does not have to be your future. God is a restorer and He will restore all that you have lost if you will seek Him and believe His Word.

Confession: I choose to forgive. I choose to let go of that person or that situation completely. I forgive by faith and by an act of my will and refuse to be influenced by my feelings. I am free.

There is a saying that has made the rounds and I am sure that you have seen it, too. It is SO true! "When YOU forgive, you set a prisoner free! YOU!" This is SO powerfully true! Don't allow emotions to dictate how you react and respond to others. The ONLY recourse we have according to the Word of God is to FORGIVE! That very act of obedience sets in motion God's great plan for YOU! AMEN! Here is Hillsong with "The Passion":

Shalom in Him!

Sunday, August 11, 2019


Today's "Grace Inspirations" by Joseph Prince contains a vital TRUTH that will make all the difference in receiving all that God has provided for us in our new and better Covenant!


John 6:28–29 …“What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.”

When I was a young Christian, I attended a seminar on what we must do to “work the works of God.” I was told that we had to pray more, fast more, know our enemy and so on. I came away from the seminar confused. Then one day, I found the same question in the Bible. But the answer was very different!

In the Gospel of John, we find Jesus being asked the same question by the multitude who had been awed by His miracles—“What shall we do, that we may work the works of God?” The people had seen Jesus healing the sick, and feeding 5,000 men with only five loaves and two fish.

Notice how Jesus answered them: “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He sent.” My friend, the greatest doing is believing—believing in Jesus the sent one, who has done it all for you at the cross!

If you are asking, “What must I do to receive my healing?” the answer is this: Believe in Jesus, who “Himself took our infirmities and bore our sicknesses” (Matthew 8:17). We have seen members of our church delivered from life-threatening conditions such as cancer and kidney failure. They had simply believed that Jesus bore their diseases on His own body. There was nothing for them to do, except to believe.

When the jailer asked Paul and Silas, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household” (Acts 16:30–31). The greatest miracle in your life happens not by you working and trying to save yourself, but by you simply believing in Jesus who died to save you from eternal damnation and to give you eternal life. Why then, should the lesser miracles of healing or financial breakthroughs be any different?

Beloved, what is the miracle you need today? There is nothing left for you to do, but everything for you to believe, because Jesus has done it all for you!

AMEN! The whole message of the Gospel of JESUS CHRIST is that HE paid it ALL for us! The WORD on it is: "Only believe!" (Mark 5:36 & Luke 8:50). Practice being a DOER of THAT Word and you will find your faith growing and the manifestations coming faster! It is simply trusting completely that God said what He meant and MEANS what He said! NOW! For YOU! AMEN! Here is Sarah Hart Pearsons with "It Is Finished":

Shalom in Him!

Saturday, August 10, 2019


Today I am really blessed reading Psalm 40 in our Spoken Word Bible Reading Plan. Verses 1-6:
I waited patiently and expectantly for the Lord; and He inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up out of a horrible pit [a pit of tumult and of destruction], out of the miry clay (froth and slime), and set my feet upon a rock, steadying my steps and establishing my goings. And He has put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many shall see and fear (revere and worship) and put their trust and confident reliance in the Lord. Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is the man who makes the Lord his refuge and trust, and turns not to the proud or to followers of false gods. Many, O Lord my God, are the wonderful works which You have done, and Your thoughts toward us; no one can compare with You! If I should declare and speak of them, they are too many to be numbered. Sacrifice and offering You do not desire, nor have You delight in them; You have given me the capacity to hear and obey [Your law, a more valuable service than] burnt offerings and sin offerings [which] You do not require.

HE is waiting on US to begin waiting on HIM! This "waiting on the Lord" does NOT mean to simply sit around 'waiting' for God to do something! The Hebrew word here is "qavah", which means: to bind together, to collect, to expect, to look eagerly for. We are to be actively seeking Him and obeying Him with expectant hope and eager anticipation for what He's going to do next! We have the promises of God's Word, the evidence of what He has done and the witness of Holy Spirit IN us to keep us on top of our game while being about the business that HE has called us to do! We also 'wait' on Him just as any good 'wait staff' will do for those they are serving! We give Him praise, we do those things that are pleasing to Him, we fellowship with Him, we learn more about Him every day so that we can continue to bring Him joy! Philippians 3:10 AMP is our prayer and Isaiah 40:31 IS OUR PROMISE! 

Philippians 3:10 [For my determined purpose is] that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His Person more strongly and more clearly], and that I may in that same way come to know the power outflowing from His resurrection  AMP

Isaiah 40:31 But they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint. KJV

AMEN! Meditating on God's Word every day will continue to build layer upon layer upon layer of Wisdom, knowledge and understanding on our sure foundation, as we become DOERS of that Word! Here, to help inspire you, is Hillsong UNITED with "Ready Or Not":

Shalom in Him!

Friday, August 9, 2019


Today I want to share Joseph Prince's "Grace Inspirations".


Matthew 6:34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

“I am concerned about the big business deal that I have to close tomorrow.” “I am worried about tomorrow’s job interview.” “My medical test results will be out tomorrow. I am afraid it won’t be good.”

God does not want you to worry about tomorrow. He wants you to know that He gives you all the help you need for today, and when tomorrow comes, so will fresh help from Him.
This is God’s principle even in the Old Testament. When the children of Israel were in the desert, God gave them fresh manna from heaven every morning (see Exodus 16:13–16, 31). They did not have to worry about tomorrow because when tomorrow came, there was fresh manna again. He was their provision every day.

Today, God’s manna is the grace He gives you every day. If you are worried about a situation tomorrow, know that there will be sufficient grace for that situation when it comes. God wants you to simply rest in His ability to heal, deliver, protect and provide for you every day.
In the Old Testament, when the armies of Moab and Ammon came against King Jehoshaphat, God told the anxious king, “Do not be afraid nor dismayed…for the battle is not yours, but God’s…You will not need to fight in this battle…stand still and see the salvation of the Lord…” (2 Chronicles 20:15–17).

When the next morning came, King Jehoshaphat saw how God caused such confusion to come upon his enemies’ camp that it brought about their own slaughter. Amid all that fighting in the enemy camp, God’s people merely stood still and saw Him fight the battle for them just as He had promised.

My friend, when you see a problem looming in your tomorrow, don’t be afraid or dismayed. Look to the Lord, and see His grace and salvation deliver you.

God wants you to live a stress-free life, not one filled with worries about tomorrow’s problems. When tomorrow comes, His grace will be there for you as your help, protection, favor and enabling!

AMEN! With anything, and everything, that ever comes against you, simply remind yourself: GOD'S GOT THIS! He is MORE than enough for every situation and NOTHING has EVER taken Him by surprise! You can count on it! He has the answer and the way out! Here is Hillsong UNITED with "Here''s To The One":

Shalom in Him!

Thursday, August 8, 2019


I really like today's "My Utmost For His Highest" by Oswald Chambers

Prayer in the Father’s Honor

…that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God. —Luke 1:35

If the Son of God has been born into my human flesh, then am I allowing His holy innocence, simplicity, and oneness with the Father the opportunity to exhibit itself in me? What was true of the Virgin Mary in the history of the Son of God’s birth on earth is true of every saint. God’s Son is born into me through the direct act of God; then I as His child must exercise the right of a child— the right of always being face to face with my Father through prayer. Do I find myself continually saying in amazement to the commonsense part of my life, “Why did you want me to turn here or to go over there? ‘Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?’ ” (Luke 2:49). Whatever our circumstances may be, that holy, innocent, and eternal Child must be in contact with His Father.

Am I simple enough to identify myself with my Lord in this way? Is He having His wonderful way with me? Is God’s will being fulfilled in that His Son has been formed in me (see Galatians 4:19), or have I carefully pushed Him to one side? Oh, the noisy outcry of today! Why does everyone seem to be crying out so loudly? People today are crying out for the Son of God to be put to death. There is no room here for God’s Son right now— no room for quiet, holy fellowship and oneness with the Father.

Is the Son of God praying in me, bringing honor to the Father, or am I dictating my demands to Him? Is He ministering in me as He did in the time of His manhood here on earth? Is God’s Son in me going through His passion, suffering so that His own purposes might be fulfilled? The more a person knows of the inner life of God’s most mature saints, the more he sees what God’s purpose really is: to “…fill up in my flesh what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ…” (Colossians 1:24). And when we think of what it takes to “fill up,” there is always something yet to be done.

This message is really so very important! WHY are we doing what we are doing? Are we in daily intimate fellowship with God so that He can lead us moment by moment, and day by day, in line with HIS plans and purposes for our lives? If so, then we WILL be running our race to WIN and we WILL be pleasing to the Lord! Remember, TRUE prosperity is being WHERE God wants you to be, doing WHAT God wants us to do! HIS way is ALWAYS the BEST WAY! AMEN! Here is Hillsong UNITED with "Whole Heart":

Shalom in Him!

Wednesday, August 7, 2019


Today's "Every Day With Jesus" by Andrew Womack is very good! 

You Must Receive

And ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan hath bound, lo, these eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the sabbath day? Luke 13:16

This woman’s sickness was the work of Satan—not the work of  God.  Jesus  said  it  had  bound  her,  not  blessed  her,  for eighteen years. The teaching that says sickness is actually a
blessing in disguise because the Lord is working His plan in someone’s life is not found in Scripture. As Acts 10:38 says, Jesus  “went  about  doing  good,  and  healing  all  that  were
oppressed of the devil.” People are oppressed of the devil, not God. 

There are seventeen times in the Gospels when Jesus healed all of the sick that were present. There are forty-seven other times when He healed one or two people at a time. Nowhere do we find  Jesus  refusing  to  heal  anyone.  He  said  He  could  do nothing of Himself, but only what He saw the Father do. His words and actions are proof enough that it is always God’s will to heal!

It is God’s will that no one should perish, but many do because of their unbelief. Likewise, it is God’s will that we all be healed, but  not  all  are  healed  because  of  failure  to  believe.  It  is  a
mistake to assume whatever God wills, will automatically come to pass, and that we don’t play a part in receiving from God.

In Hebrews 3:18-19 the children of Israel did not enter into God’s  rest  (salvation,  which  includes  physical  healing) because of their unbelief. This is just after verse twelve says,
“Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.” The Holy Spirit was talking to “brethren.” That means you and me.

Today you must believe His Word with regard to healing in order to receive the divine health and healing He wants you to have.

AMEN! Everything that God has promised and has provided for us must be BELIEVED and RECEIVED in order for US to walk in the blessed results of it! Get busy today finding our just what belongs to you as a born again child of the Living God! Now meditate on that until you  believe it, and then EXPECT it! Here is Hillsong UNITED with "Shadow Step":

Shalom in Him!

Tuesday, August 6, 2019


I really like today's "My Utmost For His Highest" by Oswald Chambers

The Cross in Prayer

In that day you will ask in My name… —John 16:26

We too often think of the Cross of Christ as something we have to get through, yet we get through for the purpose of getting into it. The Cross represents only one thing for us— complete, entire, absolute identification with the Lord Jesus Christ— and there is nothing in which this identification is more real to us than in prayer.

“Your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him” (Matthew 6:8). Then why should we ask? The point of prayer is not to get answers from God, but to have perfect and complete oneness with Him. If we pray only because we want answers, we will become irritated and angry with God. We receive an answer every time we pray, but it does not always come in the way we expect, and our spiritual irritation shows our refusal to identify ourselves truly with our Lord in prayer. We are not here to prove that God answers prayer, but to be living trophies of God’s grace.

“…I do not say to you that I shall pray the Father for you; for the Father Himself loves you…” (John 16:26-27). Have you reached such a level of intimacy with God that the only thing that can account for your prayer life is that it has become one with the prayer life of Jesus Christ? Has our Lord exchanged your life with His vital life? If so, then “in that day” you will be so closely identified with Jesus that there will be no distinction.

When prayer seems to be unanswered, beware of trying to place the blame on someone else. That is always a trap of Satan. When you seem to have no answer, there is always a reason— God uses these times to give you deep personal instruction, and it is not for anyone else but you.

We KNOW that we are growing up IN HIM when we simply desire to fellowship with HIM every day, and NOT only when we need something! He WILL lead and guide and direct you according to His perfect will and His perfect plans for YOU! But, making the choice to really pay attention, listen and then DO what He has called us to do is REAL communion with Him! Make intimate fellowship with the Living God your #1 priority each and every day! HE will always come through! AMEN! Here is Hillsong with "Ready or Not?":

Shalom in Him!

Monday, August 5, 2019


Today I want to share from Rick Renner's "Sparkling Gems From the Greek Volume 2" . This message may help you if you are entertaining doubts about something that God has called you to do!

Why God Tests You

By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, of whom it was said, That in Issac shall thy seed be called: Accounting that God was able to raise him up from the dead… — Hebrews 11:17-19

I know from firsthand experience that when God asks you to sacrifice something precious, it can be very difficult to come into compliance with what He is asking you to do. The flesh rebels every step of the way, and the mind tries to argue, as if it knows better than the Lord. Therefore, when your will collides with God’s divine plan for your life, you must make a conscious decision to exercise obedience and follow His leading, no matter what.

There are critical moments when you must make the choice to do what God asks, whether or not you understand it. When you fully abandon your natural inclinations and defer to God’s will, you will be elevated to brand-new levels of success and victory that you have never before attained.

Let me share an example of this kind of deference and obedience from my own life. When God first asked my family to move to the USSR, I knew He had something truly wonderful in store for us. However, my flesh didn’t relish the idea one bit. Night after night, I lay in my bed and listened as my mind told me that this move was the stupidest notion I’d ever considered in my life and that if I really carried through with this absurd idea, I would lose everything. I was having an ongoing inner dialogue with God about the matter. I remember asking Him, Are You REALLY asking me to sacrifice everything that we’ve worked so hard to achieve?

At the time God called us to move overseas, our ministry in the United States was finally taking off after years of struggle and hard work. However, just as we were experiencing the first trappings of success, God asked us to lay aside our dream because He wanted to do something new through us. This was a pivotal moment in our lives! We didn’t understand the full scope of His divine plan, so we had to choose to defer to His voice and trust that He was leading us on the right path.

Have you experienced a similar moment in your own life? If not, I guarantee you that a time will come when you will be called on to step out and follow God’s leading, even though you don’t fully understand His design. However, it is important to remember that when God asks you to sacrifice something precious in your life, He always has your best interest at heart, and He is trying to use that experience to reveal something to you about your life so that you can go forth and do the will of God with confidence.

A clear example of this biblical truth is clearly seen in the Old Testament story of Abraham. After waiting approximately 25 years for God’s promise of a covenant child to come true, Abraham and Sarah finally became the proud parents of their son Isaac. When Isaac was born Abraham was 100 years old, and Sarah was 90 years old.

Everyone knew this baby was a miracle! How many 90-year-old women do you know that have given birth to a baby? It was so fantastic that even Sarah said, “God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me.” And she said, “Who would have said unto Abraham, that Sarah should have given children suck? For I have born him a son in his old age” (Genesis 21:7).

Try to imagine for a moment the sight of a 90-year-old woman breastfeeding a baby. You can understand why Sarah said everyone who saw it would laugh — it was absurd to the natural mind! Yet everyone who saw this mother and child together was filled with joy because it was such a demonstration of God’s faithfulness to keep His Word. In fact, this blessing brought so many people joy that Abraham and Sarah named the baby Isaac, meaning laughter.

Abraham had personally given up a lot to accommodate the promise of God in his life. He knew that Isaac was the seed through whom God was going to bless the nations of the earth, as God had promised in Genesis 12:2,3 and Genesis 15:4,5. All of Abraham’s hopes and dreams rested in Isaac.

However, after Abraham had spent years watching his son grow into a God-fearing young man, the Bible says that God came to him and commanded him to offer up Isaac as a burnt sacrifice! Genesis 22:1 and 2 records: “And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am. And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.”

In Hebrews 11:17, the writer of Hebrews offers another account of these events, saying, “By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac…” This verse tells us that God “tried” Abraham that day on Mount Moriah when He commanded him to sacrifice Isaac as a burnt offering on the altar.

This word “tried” is from the Greek word peiradzo, which describes an intense examination that is done to prove the fitness of an object. For example, peiradzo was used to describe the fiery process of testing and removing impurities from metal in the ancient world. These tests ensured that the metal would be strong and durable, and that any object crafted from metal would hold up under pressure. In addition, peiradzo also described the process of testing coins to determine if they were authentic or counterfeit. In early New Testament times, counterfeits often looked so similar to the genuine article that only a test would reveal whether a coin was real or fake. Therefore, people regularly tested their money to see if it had worth.

The word peiradzo most often described the process of testing an object to reveal its true quality, and this is precisely how the word is used in Hebrews 11:17, where the verse says Abraham was “tried” by the Lord. The fact is, the Lord already knew that Abraham’s faith was sound and real. But when Abraham drew his knife to slay his son, Abraham himself learned something important about his own faith and level of consecration. He discovered that he was willing to do whatever the Lord asked him to do. There was nothing counterfeit or lacking about Abraham’s obedience to God; his commitment was real and authentic.

You see, God never tests you to learn new information about you. He doesn’t need to “test” to find out something new because He already knows it all. Rather, He is trying to show you something about you — to make you more self-assured and confident as you go forward to do His will. Every test you are going through is being done for your own self-discovery — lessons learned if you go through those tests correctly to give you confidence as you proceed to do the will of God for your life.

When God called my family to relocate to the former USSR back in 1991, my willingness to say yes to God revealed something to me about myself that I needed to see and know. It showed me that my commitment to God was real. This experience was a peiradzo — a test designed to reveal the imperfect areas of my life that required attention and to prove to me that I was the type of person God could depend on. He already knew this about me, but I personally needed to know it deep down in my spirit.

I am so glad my family said, “Yes!” when God beckoned us to leave the United States and move to the former Soviet Union. Even though it initially felt like we were sacrificing everything to do it, the truth is, we didn’t lose anything. What God has given us in our new home overseas is far greater than any home, possession, or dream that we thought we were relinquishing. From the very outset, God had a wonderful plan for the Renner family.

When God asks us to lay something on the altar of sacrifice, we can know there is something bigger and better He wants to put into our hands. But as long as we’re clutching what we have right now, we’re not free to receive the great things He wants to give us next.

Realize that whatever you’re doing today may simply be the training ground for your future. Don’t allow yourself to get so cemented in what you’re doing that you can’t move forward to the next step God has in store for you. And if it ever seems like God is asking you to make a huge sacrifice, just remember: This is just His way of freeing you so He can give you something better and greater and make you more productive for the Kingdom of God. You can trust Him! And as you keep your heart free and your emotions untangled, you’ll be able to move forward whenever His Spirit beckons you to take the next step in His good plan for your life!

Not only will this lesson help you if God is calling you to something unusual, but it will also help you to be more understanding when He calls others to things that you don't understand! God has the very best plans for us (Jeremiah 29:11), but He ALWAYS leaves the decision up to us! Let's be prepared to simply be obedient! THAT is what He desires! AMEN! Here is Hillsong UNITED with "Here's To The One":

Shalom in Him!

Sunday, August 4, 2019


Today I want to share from Jerry Savelle's devotional!

Receive His Mercy

O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever. Psalm 136:1

God’s mercy endures forever! His willingness to act on man’s behalf is still operating in the earth. His mercy never runs out. Neither has it abated or weakened.

“Praise the Lord! His mercy endures forever!” Mighty and powerful things happened when Israel said these words. They are words of praise and adoration to God.

When Solomon finished building the house of the Lord, the trumpeters and singers lifted their voices as one, and with trumpets, cymbals and instruments of music, they praised the Lord saying, “For he is good: for his mercy endures for ever.”

Jehoshaphat appointed singers unto the Lord to go before the army and say, “Praise the Lord; for his mercy endures for ever.”

It has been thousands of years since the Lord said His mercy extended to a thousand generations, and His mercy continues to reach you day after day. He is still plenteous in mercy unto them that call upon Him. With your spirit, dare to stretch your faith to take in the boundless mercy of God. And say with your mouth, “The Lord, He is good and His mercy endureth forever. His mercy surrounds me even today!”

AMEN! Whenever you are tempted to become afraid or to be consumed with worry, remind your self of THIS precious TRUTH! HE will NEVER leave you or forsake you!  Here is
Hillsong with "Not Today":

Shalom in Him!

Saturday, August 3, 2019


Today I want to share Jerry Savelle's devotional!


The Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear. (Psalm 27:1 and John 4:18 NKJV)

There are no circumstances under which you can afford to allow fear into your mind or heart. If given entrance, fear will neutralize your faith and open the door for the devil to work in your life. Interestingly, there is a spiritual correlation between faith and fear:

Just as faith activates God, so fear also activates Satan

Faith is the substance of things hoped for; fear is the substance of things dreaded

Faith is the spiritual force that works for you; fear is the spiritual force that work against you

Fear is never to be tolerated; it is to be cast out by the perfect love of God. Meditating on the love God has for you is the most effective way to put a stop to fear-filled thoughts. Read what God’s Word has to say about His love for you; believe and have faith in His Word. He is your loving heavenly Father. All of His plans and intentions for you are for good and for blessing.

Fear of failure is a common tool Satan uses to stop us from fulfilling the call of God in our lives. But know this: a God of love would never ask you to do something without first giving you the ability and resources to succeed. However, the fear of failure will activate the devil and cut you off from the resources that God has for you.

It is up to you to keep your heart free from fear and to draw on the grace and resources that God has given to you by faith. Faith comes when your eyes are open to truth from the Word of God.

So, find out what the Bible says about God’s love and meditate on those verses. As faith rises in your heart, fear will be cast out and the door will be slammed shut on the devil.

Confession: Holy Spirit, I ask You to expose any fear that may reside in my heart. I choose to cast out that fear with the perfect love of God as I meditate on His Word and fill my heart with faith.

AMEN! God's Word is TRUTH and FEAR has no place in the life of a believer in Jesus Christ! Here is
Hillsong UNITED with "Ready or Not":

Shalom in Him!

Friday, August 2, 2019


I really love today's "Grace Inspirations" by Joseph Prince! This is something that I have taught for years and have often come against great opposition!


2 Corinthians 5:19 …God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them…

On which two ancient cities did God rain brimstone and fire? If your answer is Sodom and Gomorrah, you are right. But if you think that God was all eager to destroy the two cities, you are wrong!

God wasn’t willing at all. He was not on a sin hunt. He was on a righteousness hunt so that He could spare the cities (see Genesis 18:23–32). And I believe that if Abraham had asked God, “What if You can find just one righteous man?” God’s answer would have been the same: “I will not destroy the place for the sake of one righteous man.”

Today, the righteousness of one Man—Jesus—has come. Jesus died for our sins and rose again for our justification. God was in Christ, reconciling the world to Himself, not counting our sins against us!

Therefore, no judgment will fall on you today because it fell on Jesus 2,000 years ago at Calvary. And if God was gracious enough to remove Lot and his family before the judgment fell (see Genesis 19:12–22), how much more will He do for you who are no longer under judgment!
And because God does not judge you, don’t be like Lot’s wife, who became a pillar of salt when she turned around to look at the brimstone and fire (see Genesis 19:24–26). She wanted to see God’s judgment, even though the angels had warned, “Don’t look back, lest you be destroyed” (see Genesis 19:17).

So don’t be judgment-focused and look back at the sins you have committed. God is not against you. He is for you and on your side. He remembers that He has already judged and punished your sins in the body of His Son. And because He is faithful to His Son and to what His Son has done, He will never judge or punish you. Any trouble that you might have today is not from Him. But He will show you a way of escape because He is on your side. He loves you and has your best interests at heart.

Beloved, God is not out to get you. He is out to bless you. And He wants you blessed more than you can ever ask or imagine (see Ephesians 3:20)!

AMEN! I seriously do not understand the drive that some believers have to judge other believers! "Judge NOT ... " is very clear and JESUS knew exactly what He was saying! Judgement has already been given and paid!!! We can discern if a brother or sister in the Lord is missing it in some area and our response should ALWAYS be to simply pray for them to see the Light and to receive the correction from the Lord and His Word! God does NOT need our help in correcting His own children! We have enough to do to keep ourselves walking in righteousness and keeping our fellowship with Him open! IF HE desires for us to do more than pray for someone, He will instruct us as such, but the first clue that we are NOT the one He will send is if WE desire to do so! "He which is spiritual among you ..." means he (or she) who is led by HOLY SPIRIT should go personally to them! So, let's stay in fellowship ourselves, pray for others, share the Good News and be DOERS of Psalm 32: from our Spoken Word Bible Reading Plan for today:

11 Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, you [uncompromisingly] righteous [you who are upright and in right standing with Him]; shout for joy, all you upright in heart!

That's our responsibility! AMEN! Here is Hillsong UNITED with "As You Find Me":

Shalom in Him!

Thursday, August 1, 2019


Today's "My Utmost For His Highest" by Oswald Chambers reveals to us a new way of seeing God's instructions to us and His desire for us to  know Him!

Something More About His Ways

When Jesus had made an end of commanding his disciples, he departed thence to teach and to preach in their cities. — Matthew 11:1

He comes where He commands us to leave. If when God said “Go,” you stayed, because you were so concerned about your people at home, you robbed them of the teaching and preaching of Jesus Christ Himself. When you obeyed and left all consequences to God, the Lord went into your city to teach; as long as you would not obey, you were in the way. Watch where you begin to debate and to put what you call duty in competition with your Lord’s commands. “I know He told me to go, but then my duty was here;” that means you do not believe that Jesus means what He says.

He teaches where He instructs us not to. “Master,…let us make three tabernacles.”Are we playing the spiritual amateur providence in other lives? Are we so noisy in our instruction of others that God cannot get anywhere near them? We have to keep our mouths shut and our spirits alert. God wants to instruct us in regard to His Son, He wants to turn our times of prayer into mounts of transfiguration, and we will not let Him. When we are certain of the way God is going to work, He will never work in that way any more.

He works where He sends us to wait. “Tarry ye…until…” Wait on God and He will work, but don’t wait in spiritual sulks because you cannot see an inch in front of you! Are we detached enough from our own spiritual hysterics to wait on God? To wait is not to sit with folded hands, but to learn to do what we are told.

These are phases of His ways we rarely recognize

I know what it is like to be believing in faith for a family member or friend to come to Jesus, but MANY times WE are NOT the laborers that God will send! Sometimes we are too close and know them too well. If we can pray for the God chosen laborers, and then step back and simply pray and praise HIM for the answer, then HE is released to use the right people at the right time to reach them! Let's get rid of the boxes that religion has caused us to put people AND God in, and allow the God of all creation to MOVE as only HE can! AMEN! Here is Hillsong UNITED with "Echoes (Til We See The Other Side)":

Shalom in Him!

Wednesday, July 31, 2019


Today we read Psalm 30 in our Spoken Word Bible Reading Plan! This is such a powerful declaration of praise to the One True God! Here is the entire Psalm! USE IT!

Psalm 30

A Psalm; a Song at the Dedication of the Temple. [A Psalm] of David.

I will extol You, O Lord, for You have lifted me up and have not let my foes rejoice over me. O Lord my God, I cried to You and You have healed me. O Lord, You have brought my life up from Sheol (the place of the dead); You have kept me alive, that I should not go down to the pit (the grave). Sing to the Lord, O you saints of His, and give thanks at the remembrance of His holy name. For His anger is but for a moment, but His favor is for a lifetime or in His favor is life. Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning. As for me, in my prosperity I said, I shall never be moved. By Your favor, O Lord, You have established me as a strong mountain; You hid Your face, and I was troubled. I cried to You, O Lord, and to the Lord I made supplication. What profit is there in my blood, when I go down to the pit (the grave)? Will the dust praise You? Will it declare Your truth and faithfulness to men? 10 Hear, O Lord, have mercy and be gracious to me! O Lord, be my helper! 11 You have turned my mourning into dancing for me; You have put off my sackcloth and girded me with gladness, 12 To the end that my tongue and my heart and everything glorious within me may sing praise to You and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks to You forever.

When WE praise and worship HIM, in Spirit and in TRUTH, there is NO LIMIT to all that He is then allowed to do for US! AMEN! Here is
Hillsong Worship with "King of Kings" again because it is SO good!":

Shalom in Him!