Aside

Change Your Focus!

“For you are of God little children, and you have overcome them, because greater is He that is in you than He that is in the world.” 1 John 4:4
Change Your Focus, Change Your LifeA negative self-image is not ‘of God’ and was not birthed from Him. How we view ourselves spiritually and naturally will determine how far we go along the journey to the blessed hope God has set before us.

Viewing one’s self as inferior, less than, unworthy and insignificant is the downward path that leads to failure and despair. There’s no future at the end of that road. I’d like to encourage you to change your focus from yourself to God.

When one focuses too long on failures, perceived faults etcetera, it makes it easier to put on the mantle of hopelessness and worthlessness rather than the garment of praise and thanksgiving.

God wants us to stop looking at our self-made image (or the image Satan has prepared for us) and turn to Him. It’s His view of us that is true and His alone. Only when we view ourselves through His eyes can we see clearly. Let’s take a look at what God’s word has to say about who we really are:

• We are the righteousness of God through Christ Jesus. (2 Corinthians 5:21KJV)

• We are made perfect through Christ Jesus and are being made holy every day we live (now that’s an awesome reason to praise God for another day!) (Hebrews 10:14 NLT)

• We are so precious to God that he watched in anticipation as we were formed in our mother’s womb. The word of God says His eyes are continually on the righteous and his ear attends (wait on) their plea! (Jeremiah 1:5, Psalm 34:15)

He said he chose us out from the entire world to be his own special son/daughter. We were adopted into his family – we are of the chosen (the elect)! The creator of the universe chose us – how could we be anything but special? God sees something in you and me that he desires. Think about that!! (Romans 8:30, James 2:5, Ephesians 1:5)

You can't have a Positve Life with negative thoughts

Image Credit: Saintintraining.net

When negative thoughts and reasonings (untrue conclusions arrived at by lies planted by Satan) tell us we’re nothing – look to God’s word for the truth. Remember, Jesus is the way, the truth and the life so let’s choose to live a life of truth rather than believe a lie constructed for our destruction!

God loves us for no other reason than it pleases him to do so. He doesn’t love us because we earned it. He doesn’t love us because we’re worthy or because we’re perfect – we won’t reach perfection until death. He loves us because it gives him great pleasure. He takes pleasure in you!

Lift up your head. Square your shoulders. Wipe your eyes, turn away from the false image Satan has constructed and turn toward the image of Christ and walk in the sunshine of His great love. Do you dare? Of course! After all we are of God!

Words for Reflection: Change your focus and God will change your life!

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“He Didn’t Have to Do it, But He Did!”

We owed a debt we could not pay; Christ paid a debt He did not owe. Thank God for Jesus!

We owed a debt we could not pay; Christ paid a debt He did not owe. Thank God for Jesus!

What was it about us that made our God sacrifice His only Son? He knew no sin, could not sin – what a sacrifice! A debt that was impossible for man to pay became possible through the precious blood of Jesus Christ. Oh dear hearts, it wasn’t the nails in His hands and feet that kept Jesus on the cross; it was His great love for mankind that caused Him to endure the excruciating pain of the cross at Calvary. He didn’t have to do it, but I’m so glad he did!

When I think of the goodness of Jesus and all that He’s done for me my soul cries out, “Hallelujah!” I praise God for saving me! I have to give Him the glory; I have to give Him the praise. Where would we be dear hearts if Jesus didn’t love us? Just where would we be if He really didn’t care?

I know where I would have been and I thank our God that I am not there! I agree with King David when he said, “I will bless the Lord at all times, His praise shall continually be in my mouth.” (Psalm 34:1 NKJV)

David was a praiser and we should be like-minded because Jesus is worthy of all our praises – Christ and Christ alone.

I am so thankful that what I have in my wallet or what kind of car I might drive doesn’t determine who I am in Christ Jesus. If it did I would be locked out of the kingdom of Heaven for sure! Isn’t it a blessing to know that material possessions and wealth will not determine our eternal destination? Thank God it’s not about stuff!

Jesus dropped the charges against us at Calvary and dismissed the case Satan had laid out before Our Heavenly Father. Christ redeemed us back unto himself and through His death, burial and resurrection He set us in Heavenly places, there to reside with Him for eternity.

Tell me, what more could we ask for? It just can’t get any better!

There’s a line in a song that goes like this, “You can have this whole world but give me Jesus.” This should be the testimony of every blood-washed believer.

“For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Matthew 16:26 NKJV)

Dear hearts, we can’t afford to go spiritually bankrupt. Our account is secured in heaven. Satan can’t make any withdrawals from it nor can a thief break in and steal it. We must use wisdom in guarding our Heavenly inheritance. If we’re not careful and mismanage our account we can end up with a balance of zero.

Let’s not make the wrong investment – this world is only temporary, filled with stuff that won’t last and holds no value at all. Let’s be wise and invest all our spiritual wealth in the Kingdom of God. We’ve gone through many tests and trials to retain the wealth God gave us on the cross and like the good servant, we should add to what He’s given us daily.

I can speak only for myself but then again, I believe it’s safe to say that most of us have gone through so much and worked too hard to miss out on eternal life in Heaven. I want to hear our blessed Savior say, “Well done my good and faithful servant!”

I want to go back with Jesus when He comes back for His church and whatever I haven’t obtained on earth naturally, I won’t need it in Heaven. I refuse to be like the rich young ruler, rich in natural wealth but poor in spirit. He couldn’t let go of his earthly wealth, he couldn’t see beyond his material possessions and he made the wrong choice. (Matthew 19:16-22, Mark 10:17-22 and Luke 18:18-23)

And what about the five foolish virgins? The poor dears went too far, stayed too long and got back too late! We can’t make it off of each other’s oil, we have to have our own on this journey or else we too will miss the bridegroom’s return.

“And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last.”

Blessed are those who do His commandments that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter through the gates into the city.” (Revelations 22:12-14)
Oh dear hearts, be blessed and always remember, it wasn’t the nails in His hands and feet that kept Jesus on the cross; it was His great love for mankind that caused Him to endure the excruciating pain of Calvary’s cross.

He didn’t have to do it, but I’m so very glad he did! God loves you and I do too; you matter to God and you matter to us!

Blossom and Rejoice!

The Son brings life to a desert land.

The Son brings life to a desert land.

Isaiah 35 NIV

The desert and the parched land will be glad;
the wilderness will rejoice and blossom.
Like the crocus, it will burst into bloom;
it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy.
The glory of Lebanon will be given to it,
the splendor of Carmel and Sharon;
they will see the glory of the Lord,
the splendor of our God.

Strengthen the feeble hands,
steady the knees that give way;
say to those with fearful hearts,
“Be strong, do not fear;
your God will come,
he will come with vengeance;
with divine retribution
he will come to save you.”

Then will the eyes of the blind be opened
and the ears of the deaf unstopped.
Then will the lame leap like a deer,
and the mute tongue shout for joy.
Water will gush forth in the wilderness
and streams in the desert.
The burning sand will become a pool,
the thirsty ground bubbling springs.
In the haunts where jackals once lay,
grass and reeds and papyrus will grow.

And a highway will be there;
it will be called the Way of Holiness;
it will be for those who walk on that Way.
The unclean will not journey on it;
wicked fools will not go about on it.
No lion will be there,
nor any ravenous beast;
they will not be found there.
But only the redeemed will walk there,
10     and those the Lord has rescued will return.
They will enter Zion with singing;
everlasting joy will crown their heads.
Gladness and joy will overtake them,
and sorrow and sighing will flee away.

Be encouraged beloved – God is with us and if we hold on we will inherit the great promise: Heaven!
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