Archive for June, 2009

We Have an Anchor

Tuesday, June 30th, 2009

“Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us: Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil; Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec. Hebrews 6:17-20 King James Version

Priscilla Jane Owens who was a teacher in Baltimore, Maryland for almost half a century wrote one of the most beautiful and inspiring songs I have ever heard “We Have an Anchor”. She also taught Sunday school and wrote most of her hymns for her Sunday school students. I believe that this song came from the depths of her heart.

The words in this inspiring song have encouraged me countless times through the years. “We have an anchor that keeps the soul steadfast and sure while the billows roll, Fastened to the Rock which cannot move, Grounded firm and deep in the Savior’s love.” How I praise God for giving Jesus to us to be our anchor in the midst of the storms of life.

I heard someone say one time that satan will always attack us at the weakest places in our lives. That is so true because yesterday satan attacked me most of the day with wave after wave of discouragement. Can you believe it; satan even tried to convince me that Jesus doesn’t love me. I just laughed when he told me that lie. Even in the midst of that vicious attack, I could hear Jesus say to me “I love you, Joanne” as He encouraged me to keep going.

It is true that satan can attack us and discourage us and temporarily defeat us but he will never win the war. Jesus has already defeated satan on the cross. Let’s all unite with one heart and say to satan “Go ahead and attack us with your billows of discouragement, criticism and sarcasm. It won’t do you any good because Jesus is the anchor of our souls.” The next time satan launches a vicious attack against you, hold on as tightly as you can to the anchor of our storms, our precious Saviour. Jesus is more than able to bring you through every storm victoriously.

Don’t miss CIR’s Daily Article !

JoanneCopyright 2009 by Joanne Lowe, all rights reserved.
Used by permission. www.hesetmefreeforever.blogspot.com
http://christians-in-recovery.org

Keep Listening

Monday, June 29th, 2009

Gospel music has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. I have memories of the very beautiful and melodic tunes, that filled the air in our tenement apartment when I was a child. As a teenagers I turned my back on Jesus, God, religion, lessons taught through the music about salvation, redemption and how Jesus will never fail, for a bag or heroin, a bottle of whiskey, beer, refer, cocaine and LSD. Also, life as a trail prisoner on Rikers Island did nothing to get my attention.

When my life spiraled out of control I lost everything; my family, my career and my health was in jeopardy. I did not have the courage to ask for help until twenty years later. I was desperate and thought the devil knew what he was talking about. I did not believe it was the power of Jesus that brought me through

When I finally got to AA, I did not believe that the steps would help me. In the beginning, I would go to meetings because I was homeless, I could get off the streets a few hours everyday, the people there did not judge me and they did not seem to care that I was there. I had no idea that I would be given the gift of recovery through the steps, especially the third step-Made a decision to turn our will and lives over to the care of God as we understood him.

Now that I am an active member of AA, I listen to those wonderful sounds and lessons of gospel music again. Power, by the Jackson Southernaires is one of my favorite songs that helps keep me focused. I love the verse that says if we do not believe there is power in the name of Jesus, we should read Matthew 1:21, Matthew 8:28-32 and Mark 16:17. Today, I read to those verses often as a part of my spiritual program.

There are many messages of hope that can also help you believe that you are not alone on your spiritual walk. Keep searching, trusting and fill the air with the powerful messages and music about hope and redemption from your higher power as you understand him.

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Cathey
Copyright 2009 by Jimmy Cathey, all rights reserved. Used by permission.
Jimmy is a substance abuse counselor. He founded a substance abuse education program that helps families gain a baseline about the biopsychosocial aspects of addiction and recovery.
“I went to my first AA meeting July 14, 1988 and one day at a time with the grace of God I have been clean and sober since. I continue to learn how to trust in the voice of God and protect myself from the demons that lurk in the dark corners of my mind. I now understand that in God’s own time my change will come…not when I want it to come, or think it should come.Today life is better.”

Are You Starting a New Day?

Friday, June 26th, 2009

So the evening and the morning were the first day (Genesis 1:5).

How many times do we wake up in the morning and speak of starting a new day? Many of us did so even today, didn’t we? And yet, scripturally speaking, we aren’t starting a new day when we wake up, but rather continuing the one that started the previous evening. And that’s an important distinction.

God doesn’t do or say things capriciously. He always has a reason for every word, every action, and creation certainly is no exception. God began the cycle of a new day in the evening because He wanted us to understand the need to rest BEFORE beginning our activities. We, on the other hand, have turned it around so that we do our “busy work” first, and then fall into bed, exhausted and in need of rest. Wouldn’t it make more sense to follow God’s pattern of resting first—drawing on His strength—and THEN going out to do whatever it is He has called us to that day?

When Mary and Joseph noticed their twelve-year-old son, Jesus, was missing, they returned to Jerusalem and found Him in the Temple. “Didn’t you understand that I must be about My Father’s business?” was His response to their concern.

The Father’s business. Isn’t that what we are to be about as well? Isn’t that how we are to spend our days? But how can we do so if we haven’t first spent time with Him, as Jesus made a practice of doing regularly—listening for His voice, His Word, His direction, communing with Him, and learning to rest. For it is as we rest in Him that we understand what He has purposed for us to do and are enabled to respond accordingly.

Too many times we run ourselves ragged during the day—working, playing, serving, ministering—all in our own strength. And we wonder why have no feeling of lasting accomplishment when we’re done and why all we want to do is sleep and recover from the day’s activities. Perhaps it’s because we have it all backward. Why not try turning things around by first thinking of your day as beginning at night, when you go to bed to rest. Spend some time communing with God—before you fall asleep, the moment you wake up—and then, rested and refreshed, continue the day in His strength, rather than your own. Chances are you’ll accomplish a lot more of the Father’s business.

Don’t miss CIR’s Daily Article !

Macias
Copyright 2009 Kathi Macias, all rights reserved. Used by permission.
Kathi Macias is a multi-award winning writer who has authored 26 books. Her newest book “Beyond Me. Living a You-first Life in a Me-first World” and Mothers of the Bible Speak to Mothers of Today (New Hope Publishers) The author can be reached at: http://www.kathimacias.com

Only in His Presence

Thursday, June 25th, 2009

“Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” Psalm 16:11 King James Version

All of us want to be happy. One of the definitions in Webster’s Dictionary for joy is “a state of happiness or felicity”. People are turning to pornography, drugs, alcohol, sex, and spending money that they don’t have on material possessions trying desperately to find happiness. They will never find happiness in those things. It is only when we stay in the presence of Jesus that we have happiness and the fulness of joy. If we aren’t happy, it’s not His fault. He never leaves us. He is still there waiting for us to fellowship with Him.

We go on vacation to get away from the every day pressures of life. However, if we have not invited Jesus into our hearts to be our personal Saviour it doesn’t matter how far we go or what we do, we will never have true happiness or rest. We can have a wonderful time with our families and friends but they can’t give us true happiness. Just as Jesus gives us peace, a peace that the world can’t give and the world can’t take away; only Jesus can give us true happiness, a happiness that the world can’t give us or take away.

If you have been searching for happiness in all the wrong places, give your heart and life to Jesus today. He will give you a peace and happiness that you have never known. Nobody loves you like Jesus loves you. He will never leave you, not even for one minute. He will carry you through all the dark valleys of your life and set you on the mountain tops of happiness. There is no one like Jesus. What a Saviour, this Jesus of Nazareth! Surrender your heart and life to Him today before it is too late!

Don’t miss CIR’s Daily Article !

JoanneCopyright 2009 by Joanne Lowe, all rights reserved.
Used by permission. www.hesetmefreeforever.blogspot.com
http://christians-in-recovery.org

Is Your Burden too Heavy?

Wednesday, June 24th, 2009

Matthew 6:34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

I compare the troubles which we have to undergo in the course of the year–to a great bundle of sticks, far too large for us to lift. But God does not require us to carry the whole bundle at once. He mercifully unties the bundle, and gives us first one stick, which we are to carry today; and then another, which we are to carry tomorrow, and so forth.

We can easily manage our troubles, if we would only carry the trouble appointed for each day. But the load will be too heavy for us–if we carry yesterday’s burden over again today, and then add the burden of tomorrow to the weight, before we are required to bear it.

Letters of John Newton

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Take Up the Cross

Tuesday, June 23rd, 2009

“Take up the cross–and follow Me.” Mark 10:21

You do not have the liberty of making of your own cross; although unbelief is a master carpenter at cross-making. You cannot choose your own cross; although self-will would gladly be your lord and master. Your cross is prepared and appointed for you by divine love–and you are to cheerfully accept it. You are to take up the cross as your chosen portion, and not to object to it. Jesus asks you to submit your shoulder to His easy yoke. Do not . . .
kick at it in petulance, or
trample on it in pride, or
fall under it in despair, or
run away from it in fear.
Take it up like a true follower of Jesus.

Jesus was a cross-bearer; He leads the way in the path of sorrow. Surely you can not desire a better guide! And if He carried a cross–what nobler burden would you desire?

The Way of the Cross is the way of safety–do not fear to tread its thorny paths.

….Take up your cross, and by the power of the Spirit–you will soon be so in love with it, that like Moses, you would not exchange the reproach of Christ for all the treasures of Egypt!

Remember that the cross will soon be followed by the crown. The thought of the coming weight of glory–will greatly lighten the present heaviness of trouble. May the Lord help you to bow your heart in submission to the divine will–that you may go forth to this day’s cross with the holy and submissive spirit which befits a follower of the Crucified.

~ Charles Spurgeon [adapted]

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Always Here

Monday, June 22nd, 2009

And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which he will shew to you to day: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen to day, ye shall see them again no more for ever. The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace. Exodus 14:13-14 King James Version

Bill Gaither wrote a beautiful song that is filled with hope and encouragement “Because He Lives”. I love this song. It is one of my favorite songs and I sing it all the time. Some of the words in the song that really touch my heart are “Because He lives, I can face tomorrow”. Thank God that Jesus is alive and interceding for us.

As I was singing that beautiful and inspiring song this morning, the thought came to me that because my precious Saviour lives, not only can I face tomorrow, I can also face today. There have been many times in my life when I have been so discouraged that I felt like I wasn’t going to make it through another hour.

What a comfort it is to our weary and battle scarred hearts to know that Jesus is not only going to be there for us tomorrow; but He is also here for us today. Joy floods my heart when I think about the Saviour of the world loving me so much that He hurts when I am discouraged and hurting.

I don’t know what is going on in your heart and life today but Jesus knows and He cares for you. Whatever battles and struggles you have today, give them to Jesus. He is more than able to carry you through all the dark valleys of your life and set you once again on the mountain top of happiness and peace. There is no one like Jesus! No one loves you like He loves you. Run into His arms today and let Him kiss your tears away.

Don’t miss CIR’s Daily Article !

JoanneCopyright 2009 by Joanne Lowe, all rights reserved.
Used by permission. www.hesetmefreeforever.blogspot.com
http://christians-in-recovery.org

Are You Self-Serving or God-Serving?

Friday, June 19th, 2009

Then He brought us out from there, that He might bring us in,
to give us the land of which He swore to our fathers. Deuteronomy 6:23

It’s amazing how many of us believers are satisfied to be “brought out” and forget that God also wants to “bring us in.” We are content with the proverbial “fire insurance” that spares us an eternity in hell yet care little about fulfilling our God-ordained purpose during our brief sojourn here on earth.

I remember when I was first saved in 1974 I heard a pastor say, “If God didn’t have a purpose for your life, He would take you straight to heaven the moment you became a believer.” I was 26 then, with a lifetime of opportunities ahead of me, which I could use to serve God — or self. Sadly my choices haven’t always been the right ones; as a result, I wasted much of the time that could have been used to fulfill God’s purposes for my life. I was content with being “brought out,” showing little concern about partnering with God to “bring me in.” Now, in my seventh decade of life, my greatest regret is the time I spent serving self, rather than God.

Most of you are behind me on the homeward journey, with more time ahead of you to make those right choices. I encourage you today to study the book of Deuteronomy and learn from the Israelites’ time in the wilderness, as they vacillated between obeying God and doing their own thing. For, ultimately, that’s the key to being brought in to the fulfillment of God’s purpose for our life — obedience. If God says: “turn left” but we go right, we have just taken a detour from the path He has marked out for us. Being obedient to God today assures us that we will end up exactly where He wants us to be tomorrow. And that’s the reason He “brought us out” in the first place.

Don’t miss it, beloved. Following God’s plan to “bring us in” is the only way to find the joy and fulfillment that we all seek….

Don’t miss CIR’s Daily Article !
Macias
Copyright 2009 Kathi Macias, all rights reserved. Used by permission.
Kathi Macias is a multi-award winning writer who has authored 26 books. Her newest book “Beyond Me. Living a You-first Life in a Me-first World” and Mothers of the Bible Speak to Mothers of Today (New Hope Publishers) The author can be reached at: http://www.kathimacias.com

His Compassionate and Loving Touch

Thursday, June 18th, 2009

And when they were come out of the ship, straightway they knew him, And ran through that whole region round about, and began to carry about in beds those that were sick, where they heard he was. And whithersoever he entered, into villages, or cities, or country, they laid the sick in the streets, and besought him that they might touch if it were but the border of his garment: and as many as touched him were made whole. Mark 6:54-56 King James Version

One of the most beautiful songs I have ever heard was written by Myra B. Welch. It is a song about a violin that was battered and scarred. Nobody wanted to buy it until a man wiped the dust off of it and tightened the strings. All of a sudden, people wanted to buy the violin because the master’s hand had touched it and the violin sounded beautiful. Isn’t that what Jesus does for us?

Our hearts and lives are battered and scarred because of the vicious poisonous darts of ridicule, criticism, sarcasm and hatred that satan hurls at us. We put on our masks and pretend that everything is okay but inside we are dying. Then the Master comes to us and dries our tears with His kisses. It is His compassionate and loving touch that gives us hope and a reason to live.

Have you allowed the Master to touch your heart and tune it with His compassionate loving touch? He will tune your heart with the atoning redeeming blood that He shed for you on the cross of Calvary. Dear Saviour, You are so precious and wonderful. All hail, King Jesus! Worthy is the Lamb of God! Thank You for everything that You have done for us.

Don’t miss CIR’s Daily Article !

JoanneCopyright 2009 by Joanne Lowe, all rights reserved.
Used by permission. www.hesetmefreeforever.blogspot.com
http://christians-in-recovery.org

The Science of Sex

Wednesday, June 17th, 2009

Click the link below for the article:
The Science of Sex