Thursday, April 21, 2016

Jesus Draws the Line

The following scripture came up during conversation the other day with a friend.  As she was speaking, the Lord gave me a beautiful vision of how these words could speak to us today, when we speak things about ourselves, or when the devil tries to use things against us.  It was a perfect vision of how Jesus always has our back!

John 8 - 1:11  The Message (MSG)
Jesus went across to Mount Olives, but he was soon back in the Temple again. Swarms of people came to him.  He sat down and taught them. The religion scholars and Pharisees led in a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They stood her in plain sight of everyone and said, "Teacher, this woman was caught red-handed in the act of adultery.  Moses, in the Law, gives orders to stone such persons. What do you say?"  They were trying to trap him into saying something incriminating, so they could bring charges against him.  

Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger in the dirt.  They kept at him, badgering him.  He straightened up and said, "The sinless one among you, go first: Throw the stone." Bending down again, he wrote some more in the dirt.  

Hearing that, they walked away, one after another, beginning with the oldest.  The woman was left alone.  Jesus stood up and spoke to her.  "Woman, where are they? Does no one condemn you?"  She replied, "No one, Master."  "Neither do I," said Jesus. "Go on your way. From now on, sin no more."

 Let me preface this by asking you, how many times have you said, "I draw the line here. No More! It's done. Finished," etc.  I've used that expression many times in my lifetime.  But, yesterday when I visualized Jesus drawing the line in the dirt, as these officials were asking for this adulterous woman to be stoned, I had a whole new vision of what drawing the line could also mean!  Put yourself in this woman's shoes for a minute ....

You have just been caught in the act of adultery.  Red-handed. No way to deny it. You are then placed in front of not only Jesus, but the whole town square, and your sin is publicly announced. Can you imagine the humiliation, the shame, the guilt, you must be feeling?  If it were me, I would want to crawl under a rock and die!!

Then you have Jesus standing in front of you.  Jesus!  Of all people to be there the day they make a public display of your ugly sin!  I can relate to how this woman must have felt.  I have not lived a perfect life, and yes, I have committed adultery before.  So for me to imagine what this woman must have felt like, there is no imagination here.  I KNOW what she felt like!!

But, let's use another sin.  What if it were gossip, or stealing, or lying, or some other sin in your life.  How would you feel standing in front of all of these people, and Jesus, and having your sin announced to the whole town square?  Not very good, huh?

Scripture says the very first thing Jesus did, before He even said one word, is he bent down and drew a line in the dirt    _______________________  Imagine that with me for a minute.  Not one word.  He simply just drew a line in the dirt.

Here is what the Lord showed me yesterday.  We've ALL sinned.  No matter how big or small our sin was, it is still sin.  All sin is forgiven by Jesus, right?  But, how many times has your past sin been brought back up to you, by the enemy, Satan?  How many times has he tried to remind you of the ugliness of that sin, the pain, humiliation, shame, or guilt?  How many times have you gone back to Jesus and asked for forgiveness because the guilt, shame, and humiliation, is still there?

In this conversation with a friend of mine yesterday, I saw this so very clearly.  The devil reminds me of our sin over and over, and we start to carry that pain, humiliation, guilt, and shame, again.  Then all of a sudden Jesus bends down and draws a line in the dirt and says, "NO MORE!!!  I draw the line here, Satan! You cannot use this sin against her any longer!  It is finished! Today is the day that I stoop down and draw the line in the sand and say NO MORE! She is mine. She is forgiven, once and for all. Be gone!"

I can just see Jesus doing this for this adulterous woman, and for you and I!  Drawing a line in the sand has always carried that meaning that it is done!  It stops here! No more! Be done with it!

I love that! Don't You!!!???  It is finished! No more! Satan can no longer use that shame, guilt, and humiliation, against you! You have no reason to walk in that shame any longer! Your sin has been forgiven, and your slate has been washed clean. You are white as snow.  Jesus didn't continue the public humiliation with this adulterous woman. In fact, He tells her that He does not condemn her, and instructs her to sin no more. He loves her! I'll bet that woman left there that day feeling freer than she has ever felt before!

Today, I just want to encourage you with this. We have all sinned. Not one single person on this earth has not sinned, with the exception of Jesus, of course. The devil will try and use your sins against you, in any way that he possibly can. But today, allow Jesus to draw the line for you! You draw your own line! If you have asked Jesus to forgive your sins, then the enemy has no right to condemn you any longer! The word says in 1 John 1:9, that if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us and cleanse us of all unrighteousness. Once He does, it's a done deal. That sin is gone! Removed from your slate. To be remembered no more! Jesus drew the line for you!  Don't ever let Satan try and use that sin against you again!  It is done! Walk in that freedom! Whom the Son sets free is free indeed!

Be blessed!

Friday, January 1, 2016

2016 ... a NEW Year!

Picture Courtesy of:


What are your goals or resolutions for 2016?  Do you know that God has already told you what to do in your new year?  It's right there in Isaiah 43:18-19

"Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.  See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland."

  1. Forget the former things
  2. Do not dwell on the past
  3. Recognize God is doing a new thing in your life
  4. Allow Him to make a way for you in 2016

Forget the former things -- I'll bet you can name quite a few things that have happened in your past that you just cannot forget!  Maybe you even think that you just can't let them go either!  You continue to carry these things in your heart ... even after all these years.

God's word in Isaiah tells us to forget those things and no longer dwell on them.  If He tells us to do this, then He must think we can or He wouldn't tell us to, right?  So if He knows this is something we CAN do, then we must obey His word and move forward with this command.

Once we do that, then our trust should be in that He has promised us that He IS doing a new thing in our lives!  If that's so, we have nothing to worry about!  All we have to do is let go of the past, forgive the ones who have wronged us (no matter what they have done to us) and then allow God to restore and repair the things in our lives that need it.  Once that is done, His freedom will rise up on the inside of us, and we will truly be able to life of peace, joy, and forgiveness.  

His word also tells us "whom the Son sets free is free indeed".  Forgiveness and letting go of the hurts isn't for the one who wronged you. It's for YOU!  It's so you no longer have to live in the prison that has held you captive all these years!  God has unlocked that prison door, and YOU ARE FREE TO STEP OUT OF THE PRISON CELL OF UNFORGIVENESS!  Take that first step in allowing the Lord to heal your wounds, so you can walk in total freedom in 2016! Allow Him to make a way for you!

I pray that YOU will be able to see the new thing that God is doing for you in 2016.  Stand together with me in prayer that you WILL see the freedom that He has in store for you!  And when you do feel that freedom for the very first time, I know you will then realize that it was worth it!  God LOVES you!  He doesn't want you walking in that pain and suffering any longer!  Let it go.  Surrender all of your hurts, wounds, unforgiveness to Him, and allow Him to heal you completely, and to restore what the devil has stolen from you all these years!  I pray this for you tonight, in Jesus' name! AMEN

Happy New Year!

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Purpose ...

I am a personal caregiver.  There are days where I absolutely love my job; and then there are days I wish I could find a different job.  This is one of the most bittersweet jobs I've ever had!  I love it and I hate it, sometimes all in one day!

For the past couple of months, I have been struggling!  I kept feeling like there was more to life that what I was experiencing with my job.  I have felt like there was more to life than just bathing people and changing Depends.  I'll be 57 years old in less than a month.  I have truly felt I have been going through a deep transition in my life; one where I had no clue which way was up some days!

I am a member of a Women's group on Facebook, and I attend a class at our church each Sunday evening.  In both groups, I've asked the ladies to be praying for me to hear God in which way He truly wanted me to go with my career.  Is it time for a new career?  Or is this exactly where God wants me, at this time?  The prayers went forth and man, did God speak to me!  Loud & Clear!

There are moments of my job that are very very difficult; especially when I have to bathe some individuals that cannot take care of themselves physically.  I won't tell you the details because I would like for you to continue reading!  Let's just say that sometimes this job can get very dirty, and very unpleasant.  That's the part of the job that I have always struggled with, personally.  I felt like that's all I was good for...changing messy diapers.  There had to be more to life than this... right???

As I began to seek God, and my prayer warriors joined me in prayer, God moved mountains!  I saw things I hadn't seen with my clients before.  I heard things I hadn't seen from them, as well. My heart literally broke for them.  Some of their comments literally broke my heart!  I wanted to just wrap them up in my arms and hug them forever!  I truly felt God's mercy and compassion for them!

One client told me she wanted to die.  Another client needed physical needs met immediately.  Another client just needed someone to sit and talk to her because she was lonely.  When I stop putting myself above these clients, and stopped being so selfish, God showed me these clients through His eyes.  In between each client, I was able to talk to God.  My heart was so full of His love for them!  I thanked God opening my eyes!

It is so easy sometimes to get so pent up in what is wrong with our lives, that we forget to look at what is right.  We forget to look at the blessings!  We forget to see the things in our lives that are right there in front of us, giving us an opportunity to bless others; if we would just take the focus off of ourselves!  It isn't about us anyway, right?  It's about who God puts in front of us to serve, to bless, to show His love, and to shine His light!  It's about sharing a word of encouragement and a message of hope!  It's about letting others know they are important to us, especially when they feel like there isn't a person on this earth that loves or cares about them!

We have a huge opportunity as Christians.  We have the opportunity to serve others, to show agape love, to give a message of hope.  Non-Christians cannot offer the same kind of things to those of this world.  With all the negativity that is in our world these days, terrorist attacks, murders, missing children, the homeless, and more, we have the "opportunity" to show a different side of this world.  It all starts when we take the focus off of ourselves first.  Then, and only then, can we truly serve others the way God intended us to serve.

Go bless someone!

Monday, November 9, 2015

How often do you read your Bible?

I hear this question often, "how often do you read your Bible?"  I want to say that I read it every single day, and most times I do.  But honestly, I don't read my Bible every single day.  Some days I am so rushed, I leave the house without reading first.  It's usually on those days that I can go back and look at my day and think "man, I wish I would have taken the time today to read His word!"  Ever feel that way?

Why is it that we don't take even 5 minutes to read His word?  Why is it that our day is more important than taking just 5 minutes in His word?  Think about what God did for us, and how much He loves us!  He sent His one and only Son to die for us so that we could have our sins forgiven, and be given a new slate and become a new creature in Him ... but we can't take 5 minutes to read His word?  Ouch!!

Trust me, I'm not pointing fingers here.  I'm preaching to myself here, too.  When I think about reading God's word and what it does for me, I just shake my head and wonder why I put it off some days!  I feel fantastic after I spent time in the Word!  I feel like I can handle anything, once I've spent even just 5 minutes in His word!  So why in the world would I choose to put off reading His word, and spending that special time with Him?  I truly have no answer to that question!

So, let's take a moment and think about what God's word does for us:

  • It's truth!  Every single word is truth.  Why would we not want to spend time in truth, especially in a world like we live today!
  • It brings life to every reader!
  • God speaks to us through His word.  
  • God motivates, disciplines, and encourages us with His word!
  • God's love comes through His word.
  • We receive peace when we read His word.
  • God's plans for our lives are revealed in His word.
  • His word brings healing to our weary bodies!
  • His word is for our growth as Christians.
  • His word reveals the enemy so we know who our adversary is.
  • His word reveals agape love, understanding, revelation, and grace!

These are just a few reasons to spend even just 5 minutes in His word each day.  These reasons are all reasons, and trust me, there are many more reasons why we must make the time each and every day to spend with God, to allow Him to speak to us.  I know you know what I mean when I say that I just feel better when I read His word.  You do too, don't you!?!

So from this day forward, will you take a stand with me?  Will you take a stand against anything and everything that would try to keep you from spending even just 5 minutes in God's word each day?  

Set an appointment on your calendar with God, for every day of the week, and don't cancel or reschedule it.  Just do it.  Start with just 5 minutes and build from there.  I promise you, it will be well worth the time and effort.  I will take this stand with you, as well.  That's my promise not only to you, but to GOD!  He deserves our time.

Encounter God's Word Today!

Friday, October 23, 2015

The "F"-Bomb

Courtesy of:


You've heard the word before.  And for some of us, we've even used the "f-bomb" before; I did, especially when I was younger.

But, I have to say today that when I hear this word used, it just makes me cringe; especially when I hear a woman use it!  It just doesn't sound right coming from the mouth of a woman!

I recently talked to my daughter about this, and I told her that I feel like when women use this word, it takes away from their beauty!  It takes away from their charm, and intelligence.  This is just my opinion, and I hope I don't stir up a bunch of negative comments about this, but is this really a word that we want to use on a regular basis?

I even see this word all over social media, and when I do I unfollow the person that I see using it, or posting a graphic with this word in it.  

What bothers me the most though, is when I see Christians posting graphics with this word, or even using the word themselves.  Granted, I'm not perfect, and when I get angry I even slip up and say this word once in a while.  I used to use this word all the time when I was younger, and didn't even think twice about it!  But when I slip up and use this word today, it just makes me cringe!  I immediately ask the Lord to forgive me for using such foul language.  

So, before I go on any further, let's take a look at what the Bible says about using foul language:  

Ephesians 4:29 (ESV) -- Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

Matthew 15:11 (ESV) -- It is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but what comes out of the mouth; this defiles a person.

Proverbs 4:24 (ESV) -- Put away from you crooked speech, and put devious talk far from you.

These are just a few scriptures the Bible has to offer about what comes out of our mouths, but my most favorite is:  

Psalm 19:14 -- Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.

I want the words of my mouth to be pleasing to the Lord.  I don't want to have to be embarrassed about the words I speak!  If Jesus was standing next to me, would I use the same kind of language?  Guess what?  He IS standing next to me...always!!  So, what comes out of my mouth needs to be pleasing to His ears.

I know Jesus still loves me when I say a bad word every once in a while, but I want my heart to be in a place that whatever I speak should be pleasing to Him, whether it's a cuss word or not.   

I don't know about you, but I know I have some work to do in this area.  How about you?

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Forgiveness Is for YOU!!!

Many times I have heard people say "there is no way that I can forgive that person for what he/she did to me!" When I hear this, it makes me horribly sad because I know what condition this person's heart is in, and just how difficult it is to forgive those who have hurt you. I grew up with abuse in my childhood, both physically and mentally. 

I didn't actually know my biological mother until I was around 8 or 9 years old. I was physically abused by my stepmom. I was abused by men in my life. Men took advantage of me in my young adult life. I grew up thinking no one loved me; no one cared; and I wasn't worth anything! I was told I would never amount to anything in life. I remember someone saying to me once, "with a mom and dad like you have kid, you don't stand a chance in life! you'll never amount to anything!" Those words killed my spirit! I found myself searching for love, but in all the wrong places! 

Men started paying attention to me in my early teens and I fell for what I thought was "love", only to be let down time and time again. I struggled with this for years! I made tons of mistakes over these years because I was so sure that no one loved me, nor would/could anyone love me! I was married in my early 20's, to a man that I fell head over heels in love with. I truly thought he was my knight in shining armor! I had an 8-month old baby when I met him, and he took us both in as if she were his, and loved her just as he would if she was his. Then a few years later, we had a baby together. But during the first five years of our marriage, I was so sure that he did not love me, that any time another man showed me any kind of attention, I had an affair. I'm not proud of that. But I share that only to show you how desperate I was for love.  Even when I had love in my life, I was so convinced that no one could love me. I didn't recognize love from anyone else. I was self-sabotaging myself over and over again, and of course, this marriage, and others ended in divorce! 

 I held on to the hurt from my childhood for YEARS! I would think that I had let it go, only to discover that I had picked it back up again. I had thought that I forgiven myself for destroying this "knight in shining armor" marriage, only to find out that I had not.  

I then found my current husband and had thought that I forgiven him for things that happened in our early marriage, only to find out that I had not! This has happened in my life over and over again for the past 31 years! I couldn't have a decent relationship because I truly did not believe that I deserved to have one! I truly believed that no one could love me! Heck, I didn't love myself! How could anyone else love me! My heart was so wounded and full of bitterness, anger, and unforgiveness! I was becoming cynical. I was becoming hateful. I was going to make sure that whoever I was with was going to feel my pain! Because if I couldn't be happy, how dare they think they could be happy around me! Yes, I was that wounded! 

God recently has started me on a forgiveness journey. He has opened the doors to show me who I needed to forgive, and who I needed to ask forgiveness from. Trust me, this was not an easy thing for me to do, especially to ASK forgiveness from others! I was scared! Scared that they would say NOT ON YOUR LIFE!!! But I've learned that when we step out and do exactly what God is telling us to do, we have to trust that He has a reason for it! We have to trust that He has already prepared the way for us. He has prepared the hearts that needed to hear from us; and our own hearts! 

He has made a huge change in my relationship with my husband.  We have grown in so many ways over the last year!  Our marriage is stronger now than it ever was before!  Only because God opened that door to forgiveness, and He has healed my heart!  He has closed the open wounds!  He has softened my heart, and I am so much more open to what He has in store for me!

Yes, walking in forgiveness can be scary! It can mean we need to step out of our comfort zones, in some cases. But what I am finding is that when we do what God is calling us to do, it is so worth it! I have experienced so much freedom from this forgiveness journey He has me on! I feel like I am walking on Cloud 9 right now. I could scream it from the rooftops how GOOD our God is! I am reminded of the saying "When God brings you to it, He will bring you through it!

Forgiveness isn't for the other person that has hurt you!  It is for you!  For you, to walk out of that prison of unforgiveness.  For you, to be set free from the bondage of unforgiveness.  For your health.  For your peace of mind.  For your well-being!  

If God is calling you to do something that You don't think you are able to do...I encourage you to do it in Him! Ask Him to help you! He will. You can do whatever He is calling you to do, in His strength! When we are weak, He is strong! He won't let you down! He's already prepared the way for you .... Remember, "whom the Son sets free is free indeed"!

What are you waiting for...

Monday, October 12, 2015

Do Not Sit On the Fence!!

This last weekend, was a pivotal point in my Christian walk.  It was life-changing.  It was one of the most amazing spiritual encounters I have ever experienced!  It was a time that God said to me, "It is finally time for you to get off the fence and move forward in your walk with me!"

What did God mean by that?  For me, it meant it was time to stop playing "Christian" and time to actually start being one!  I'm not sure if you know what I mean by that, but for me, it was like a light bulb went off in my spirit, and I knew immediately it was time for a change!

I actually gave my heart to Jesus in March of 1984.  I went to the altar and made a public declaration of accepting Jesus as my Savior.  Three weeks later, I was baptized because that's what I was told was the next step in my new walk as a Christian.  So for 31 years, I've held the title of "Christian", and I've done all the things that Christians do....attend church, read my Bible, pray, pray for others, and more. I even founded an Online Bible Study ministry!! But still something was missing.  I couldn't pinpoint exactly what it was for the longest time.

For many years, even after accepting Christ, I held on to a lot of baggage from the things that happened in my childhood and young adult life.  I grew to believe the things that I was told by others; and the things that I convinced myself of because of how I was treated by others.  I held on to a lot of anger, bitterness, resentment, and hurt.  I learned as a young Christian that I needed to forgive those who had hurt me, and to be honest, I thought I had!  In fact, I had forgiven them many times.  Each time I would forgive, I would think it was all done, and those hurtful thoughts would never come back again.  Well, they did.  And it happened enough times that I soon found that I was carrying all of those hurts all over again!

God told me when I founded the Online Bible Study that He had anointed me to share the good news with others.  That I was called to share His word with others.  He confirmed it many times!  But something kept holding me back.  Something just would not allow me to give my total self to this calling, or to Him!  I knew it. I felt it.  And I even prayed about it.  But nothing happened. ... Until this last weekend!

Our church offers these classes called Journey classes.  They take you on a Journey with God to open up your mind, heart, and life to Him.  I've heard about these classes time and time again from others in our church who had already gone through them.  My husband and I tried on three different occasions to register for these classes, but one of the requirements of the class is that you had to make time to attend an Encounter Retreat, as well.  Each time we tried to register, we found that our work schedules just would not work with the same weekends that the retreat was being held. So we put it off a while longer.

Finally, the time came that we were able to register for the class and retreat!  We began the classes just over a month ago.  Each week, we would walk through the word of God, watch a video, and break out into small groups to discuss what we had learned that night.  What we were learning was pretty basic "new believer" stuff; things I had learned before.  But something was different this time.  It was like God was saying "Stop thinking you already know all of this, and open up your heart to learn what I want you to learn this time!"  So I did.  I began to attend each class with a new desire to search out what God had for me each week.  I began to learn some things along the way!  Then it was time for the Encounter Retreat!!  Oh. My. Goodness!!!  Little did I know what God had in store for me and my husband!!

The whole weekend was about getting rid of the things in your life that are holding you back from giving your ALL to God!!  That meant past hurts from others; things I did to others to hurt them; things I was mad at God about; things I was mad at my husband about, and so much more!!!  It was about recognizing things the enemy uses in your life to keep you in sin and in bondage.  It was recognizing addictions that we had that kept us from living the abundant life that God has called us to live!  It was about letting go ...  LETTING GO so I could finally get off the fence and walk not a lukewarm walk for Him, but an ON-FIRE walk for Him!!

I walked away from that retreat this weekend feeling like a brand new person, so on fire for God!  Ready to do what God is calling me to do.  Ready to love my husband the way God wants me to love him.  Ready to love my kids, my grandchildren, my siblings, my parents, my friends, my church, all the way God intended me to love them.  I walked away from this retreat knowing now that I am loved!  I am forgiven.  I have had all of my sins forgiven and I have been washed clean white as snow!  I have been given a new chance, after 31 years, to live a life for Christ like I've never lived before.  It's up to me to maintain this walk!  But praise God, I was baptized this weekend and filled with the Holy Spirit, so I have the Holy Spirit to help me when I am weak this time.

I have to share this with you, too.  I have been baptized, and I have been filled with the Holy Spirit before.  But I also walked away from all that for several years.  So I've been struggling with my walk, and getting that "on-fire" walk back again!  I finally got it back this last weekend!  I am truly on fire for Jesus, and nothing is going to stop me this time!

Are you on the fence in your walk with Jesus?  Are you on the fence as to whether or not you even want a walk with Jesus?  If so, I encourage you to dig deeper to see what God has for you.  God is a good God who has some amazing plans for your life!  Plans for a future, and hope!  Plans for an abundant life in Him!  Don't be afraid.  Just do it!  Give your life to Him now.  Ask Him to forgive you of your sins and wash you clean!!  Ask Him to fill you with His Holy Spirit.  Once you do, your life will never be the same!  I promise!

No Turning Back!