that Wee Little Man…

  • Most of us know this little childhood song…sing it with me:

Zacchaeus was a wee little man,
A wee little man was he.
He climbed up in a sycamore tree
For the Lord he wanted to see;

And as the Savior passed that way,
He looked up in the tree,
And He said, “Zacchaeus you come down!”
For I’m going to your house today,
For I’m going to your house today.

  • The author is unknown. The imparted profound. The account of Zacchaeus is found in Luke 19:1-10.

Zacchaeus

 

 

  • Will the LORD not do the same for YOU!?!?
  • He is still the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).
    • The same Jesus that prepared that sycamore tree for Zacchaeus, the same Jesus that walked by Zacchaeus, the same Jesus that talked, ate, and changed Zacchaeus’ life — is the SAME Jesus today that prepares the way for you. The same Jesus that walks with you through the valley of the shadows of death and rejoices with you on the mountaintops. He is the same Jesus that talks with you: through His Word and uses your Pastor(s) in that process as well. The same Jesus that changes your heart.

Zacchaeus, you, and I know the same Jesus — the difference is our response.

What will you do with Jesus?

The Battle of Thought

Truly the mind and thought are a battlefield that war against one another: the flesh, the spirit and even against themselves. It shouldn’t but it does, it reminds me of that commercial years ago of a gentleman with a mini-sized white dressed angel on one shoulder and on the other he had a mini-sized red dressed devil. They both were whispering in his ear telling him what to do — one was sly in words (yet wrong) and the other was truthful yet honest in word, but the man was confused in which way to turn. He went nuts!

So, it is true today, though there is no such thing as a mini-sized white dressed angel or a mini-sized red dressed devil sitting on our shoulder whispering in our ear telling us what we should or shouldn’t do. But if we are honest with ourselves, our mind (and/or thoughts) battle for attention, direction, and desires that quiet frankly conflict more often then we care to admit. The war of what we know, what is right, wrong, and/or Biblical (meaning, squaring up with the Word of God: the Scriptures) and the daily choice of Colossians 3 — living the Word of God out with a heavenly mindset. We drive ourselves “nuts” like that man in the commercial when we do it our way and not God’s way.

Maybe we should be asking ourselves this question: “Why?”

Today, I would love to share with you something I have been personally working on myself and hope it will be an encouragement to you in your walk with Christ as well as in your heart and thought process of taking out the toxic and replacing it with GOD! Because our thoughts matter, because HE matters!

First, I am going to give you all three points, then we will go back and revisit each one briefly. 

  • To battle against our toxic thoughts {which are sinful} we first must 1) IDENTIFY THEM. This my friends, takes honesty — from within and with God. Remember He already knows you from the inside out, so don’t be shy with your Lord. You need to be honest with yourself for you will go nowhere in this journey without it. There is also a possibility that you may need to be honest with others in this stage as well. Be on your knees before your King and ask Him to show you. Don’t forget Jeremiah 33:3.
  • 2) REJECT IT. This battle is like none other. It is not physical, though at times it may feel like it, but rather it is a spiritual battle that requires God’s help in fighting. You cannot identify or reject without God’s enabling power working within you. You are unable to complete this task in and of ourselves for we cannot fight or win this battle alone, but rather through Him we are more than conquerors (Rom. 8:37).
  • 3) REPLACE IT. I cannot tell you how incredibly important this part of the puzzle is to rid yourself of toxic thoughts. If we do not replace that lie, falsehood, whatever it is in your life that is contrary to God, Himself, His Word, His Truth’s (promises, His character) and who He say you are in Christ — (I don’t write this to scare you into anything, but to help you understand the grave importance of this) it will return in some form or another but worst than the first time around! Guaranteed! (for example: if someone says that you are worthless, no good, the scum, etc, but uses you for their sexual pleasure — tell me my friend, where is the GOD-TRUTH in those statements? Tell me where the GOD-TRUTH is in the BIBLE!!!! Tell me which one LOVES YOU!!!!) CLING TO THE WORD!
  • You must replace what you are striving to take out! Don’t lose hope — God will never leave you nor forsake you (Heb. 13:5; Deut. 31:6).
  • Choose to trust God’s Truth even if you do not fully understand God’s wise and loving plan. God can never be unloving; He cannot go against Himself, NEVER!

      Praying for you today as you seek first the kingdom of God and identify, reject and replace. Enjoy your walk with Jesus! Stick to the Word! 

      Power of the Thought

      Our thoughts matter.

      • I’ve been doing much thought-searching lately. The deeper the dig goes, the more Scripture that is unfolded, the more revealing the revelation becomes…our thoughts are incredibly powerful. 
      • Sure, most of us would agree, this is no new grand discovery. But do we stop ourselves and take the time to think of the repercussions of even one thought we allow ourselves to dwell upon? Oh those ‘good’ ones are easy, but what about the ‘wrong’ ones we let slip out and then we justify by saying things like “We are having a bad day” or “I’m tired or stressed out right now.” Does this stand before our righteous and holy God? You know what excuses you use.

      What we think, no, what we choose to dwell on will determine what we become. This is not “think happy thoughts and happy things will happen” but rather the holding captive thoughts that are toxic in form {ungodly} rather than focusing {which is a personal choice} our thoughts on God’s Truth and choosing to cling onto God’s Truth then live those Truths out which produce God-honoring-pleasing thoughts.

      • Today, why not begin to replace your toxic, sinful thoughts with the only Truth that can set you truly free and bring true freedom (John 8:32). 
      • What toxic thoughts negativity affect your life and relationships?
      • Choose to replace them with God’s Truth – it’s worth it! 

      the Armor of God: Prayer [Really???]

      What is the armor of God and truthfully, do we really need it?

      Have you ever wondered why we need to fight or for that matter ‘wear’ such spiritual garments? Why we must do this so-called fighting that quite frankly we do not even ‘see’ – or do we?

      I believe we all would say that we have fought a battle or two in our life time whether it was with our kids, our in-laws, our parents, possibly our spouse, or maybe even God.

      But one of the most troubling battles we face [more than we care to realize] are not the things that we ‘perceive’ with our five sense – but rather everything else that is unseen. Don’t get me wrong, we certainly wrestle here on earth and it’s directly related to the visible and invisible, but we must not forget that the invisible is REAL – much more than we care to reckon. So before we disregard its presence, let’s take a little look.

      My Pastor, who is also my husband, said a few months ago in a Sunday morning worship service, “Remember who your REAL enemy is! It is not those sitting next to you here at church; it is not those who live in your home or extended family members; it is not the workplace, the store, that slow driver in front of you that is ‘making you late’; it is not people; it is not God – it is the DEVIL. Your real enemy is the devil!” [Pastor Richard Woodruff] We must remember who the real enemy is!

      The devil (aka: satan – who is the great deceiver) wants you to ignore the spiritual reality behind your physical reality. Why? It is to his best interest and your greatest destruction; for he knows that as long as you are focused on what you physically ‘see’ with your eyes, he can continue his dirty deeds and run rampant underneath the surface. This only happens when we are personally distracted, unfocused, (mind, heart, spirit) on the things that do not matter most.

      Isn’t that so wicked – oh wait a minute…he is wickedness, he is not our friend…he is the greatest deceiver! Following me, yet?!

      My friends, it is not for us to live in fear over the devil, but rather live in wisdom, knowledge and understanding of who and what our enemy is and capable of – but more importantly resting in the power of knowing who our God is and who we are through Jesus Christ.

      Remember we have already won the battle, but don’t live foolishly – the enemy may be invisible, but he is not fictional. He is present. Real. He wants to destroy you! He is persistent. Consistent.

      Do not think for one moment that because you are a believer in Jesus Christ you have immunity; quite frankly you have a bulls-eye on your forehead. You are the target. Don’t allow this to scare you but rather remember WHO resides within you? GOD! This means you are fully loaded; fully empowered; 100% equipped, power-filled by the Father Himself [now if that doesn’t give you goosebumps] to defend anything and everything, even when we don’t understand — yet we trust. [what God-love. God-grace. God-comfort!]

      So, how does one defend, reload, and stand strong?

      1. PRAY! [Yep] Pray! You may be laughing at me right now, but it is true. You may be thinking “how in the world does praying help you win the battle?” For starters, read Ephesians. Paul highlights one of the most important [yet most overlooked aspects] spiritual armor – PRAYER! Without communicating with God over the battles – you’re done! Without His inward strength coming through us from time spend in prayer and in His Word – you’re done! Prayer brings His plan. His vision. At times His purpose. We cannot do what He wants if we do not know what He requires. Communication! Paul esteemed prayer so critical to the victory over satan’s power in our lives/during these battles – maybe we should take note, just maybe! [what do you think?]
      2. Study out the armor of God – allow it to become you!
      3. You want to see personal victories – PRAY – for there is victory in spiritual warfare when prayer is practiced. Don’t be afraid of it – just do it!

      “I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints, [19] and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might [20] which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places, [21] far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come”

      Ephesians 1:18-21.

      Our Soul’s Longing

      I don’t know what your story looks like. I don’t know what the innermost parts of your heart look like, but I know who does, God!

      You see, He doesn’t see a sinner, a failure, or any of the labels you put upon yourself. He sees only YOU. His precious daughter or son who is worthy of His love and forgiveness. You may not like yourself but God loves you beyond word and deed – so much so, that you were worth dieing for (even before you were a thought).

      Funny thing about this ‘negative self promotion of self’ is just that: SELF. It comes from within (in our home we call it “STINKIN’-THINKIN’). We could also call it pride. Yes, self pity is pride.

      Funny how the devil enjoys a defeated Christian who is absorbed with selfish-wrongful thoughts we think of ourself or maybe even of others. We do it to ourself. Maybe for some it is a form of self inflicted torture to mask the pain that they really feel deep within…the need for CHRIST!

      Can you be a believer in Jesus Christ and not have a close intimate relationship with Him that changes you from the inside out…sadly, yes (satan’s favorite Christian). Could you be reading this blog and wonder what in the world am I talking about – this “Jesus filling my aching hurting heart…” Yes, I know He can!

      It is only when we finally come to that place in our life when all else has failed and nothing but Christ will do (not a crutch) – just Christ. The awesome power of truly getting real with our soul and seeing our need for Christ because He is our Creator and I am His creation. Then and only can we begin the journey of healing from being filled with self to begin filled with the only One that can truly satisfies our soul!

      Do you remember that sobbing tear-filled, broken spirit-needing God woman in Luke 7:36-50 (if not that’s OK because we’ll explain). Despite the jeering comments, the head turning crowd, and her own reputation she came boldly to Jesus not only with outward adoration but also with inward declaration. She not only poured out her dowery (which was very costly to her future) but she realized that Jesus Christ was the only One who can fill, cleanse, heal, forgive, restore, and free her hurting soul from within.

      The same is true today, it is only when we bow at the feet of Jesus with our tear-soaked heart and pour out our alabaster jar do we find His peace, forgiveness, healing, cleansing, filling and find our innermost parts filled.20170202_135558

      It’s a promise. It can be yours.