MODEST REALLY IS HOTTEST

Girls…teenagers…ladies…single women… married women…

We can cause men to have lustful thoughts by the things we wear or don’t wear.  Some men think that if we are willing to show it then we might be willing to share it.  I am not just talking to teenage girls but to all women, younger or older, single or married. We have a responsibility to dress pleasing to our Heavenly Father. This sounds really elementary but I learned years ago to do the “raise and praise test” in the dressing room. If I raise my hands to The Lord and certain things show, I am not buying it. If I bend over and certain things show, I am not buying it.  God did not create us to cause others to have lustful thoughts when we walk into a room because of the way we are dressed. I love the ESV version of 1 Corinthians 12:23 “And on those parts of the body that we think less honorable we bestow the greater honor, and our unpresentable parts are treated with greater modesty,” Modest really is hottest and is pleasing to God.

As Christians, we are ambassadors of the King. Think about royalty and what that means. I think of honor and respect when I think of royalty. As a Christian woman, I think of my position in Christ and the fact that I am His ambassador. When I get dressed, how am I representing the King of Kings when I leave my house?

modest is hottest Is my outfit appropriate? Is everything covered? How do my clothes conform to my body? Are they too tight? Are they too revealing? Will it be a distraction? Will it cause others to lust? Now I know you can’t control others but ladies, you know what I’m talking about. Think of it this way, when you are talking to others, are they going to have direct eye contact with you or will their eyes automatically go to what you are wearing and will their eyes stay there? Will they struggle to hear what you are saying because they are so distracted by your outfit?  If I am speaking to you and your eyes keep going to what I am wearing, then my clothing might be a distraction. Let’s remember when we get dressed that we are ambassadors and represent Jesus wherever we go. I want what I say to be remembered, not what I wore to be remembered.

Come on ladies, let’s make our wardrobe pleasing to God! We can do this!

1 Peter 3:3-4 “It is not fancy hair, gold jewelry, or fine clothes that should make you beautiful.  No, your beauty should come from within you—the beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit that will never be destroyed and is very precious to God.”

1 Corinthians 12:23 “And the parts we regard as less honorable are those we clothe with the greatest care. So we carefully protect those parts that should not be seen,”

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 “Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”

Matthew 5:28 “But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

 

 

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Plain talk for young people…. Purity

The enemy will strategically send those people into your life to steal your purity. Satan hates your purity and we know the thief comes to steal, kill and destroy, even your purity. He will send the “experienced” boy or girl into your life and very subtly the enemy will use them to chisel away at you little by little and to make those boundaries become a little more gray.  The enemy uses flattery and words like I love you, you are the only one for me, you know I respect you, if you really loved me…. The enemy has no new tricks and has used those lines for centuries to deceive. One may think but I am  different and I can change them but we are not the Holy Spirit.  It is God that changes. As young people, it is vital to protect our purity by seeking God about who we “spend time with”, and who our partner in life will be. A young person must be bold in their faith and in their stand on purity and not waver. Don’t put yourself in compromising situations that leaves the door open to cross God’s boundaries for you and give in to temptation. Be aware the enemy will send thieves to steal what God has reserved for marriage.

THE PAIN OF REJECTION….

Let’s face it- We all want others to like us. The truth is, however, that not everyone is going to like you, approve of you, accept you or celebrate you. They may just totally reject you. It’s just life. How we handle rejection is very important.
There’s not a person on this earth that hasn’t struggled with the issue of rejection. Rejection has many layers. It can be as simple as being left out of someone’s plans or it could be an ongoing rejection that no matter what you try to do to be a part of someone’s life, they shut the door in your face over and over. They refuse to respond and their refusal to respond causes you to feel rejected. We must remember that often times when someone rejects you, it has nothing to do with you but with their own hurt issues. When someone has been hurt, so many times they build walls around themselves to protect their own self from being hurt again.  Sometimes we just have to change our thinking- their rejection of me is not my problem-it’s their problem.
You may be reading this today and your spouse has rejected you. Perhaps your family has rejected you. Perhaps it is close family members such as children that have rejected you. Perhaps someone in your church has rejected you. Perhaps someone in your workplace has rejected you. Perhaps you are going through a divorce and you feel that everyone is rejecting you. Perhaps you are divorced and remarried and your new spouse’s family rejects you. Perhaps you are simply being excluded by others and their plans. If these scenarios do not apply to you, I am sure you can make your own sentence up. The point is that we have all felt rejected at one time or another in our life.
Regardless of the reason for the rejection, we must guard our hearts continually against rejection.  Rejection causes us to feel all alone as if no one loves us.
I know someone else who was often rejected and his name is Jesus. Jesus was rejected throughout his entire life. He was even rejected by “religious” people. At one point, he was even rejected by those in his “inner circle.” He was rejected to the point of death.  We must remember that Jesus came to this earth not only to die for our sins but also to identify with everything that we will ever go through this life. He suffered rejection over and over again so He knows just how you feel and you are not alone in your situation.
There is One who has already been there and He will never leave you alone nor will He ever reject you. Run to the One who understands your pain. Run to the One that will heal your hurts. Run to the One that will never reject you. Run to Jesus.
We must never look to others to determine our worth and value. We cannot base on our identity on whether others approve of or reject us. Our identity must be based on what God says about us. Here’s just a few things He says about you:
I am God’s child.-Galatians 3:26
I am Jesus’ friend.-John 15:15
I am a whole new person with a whole new life.-2 Corinthians 5:17
I am a place where God’s Spirit lives.-1 Corinthians 6:19
I am God’s Incredible work of art.-Ephesians 2:10
I am totally and completely forgiven.-1 John 1:9
I am created In God’s likeness.-Ephesians 4:24
I am spiritually alive.-Ephesians 2:5
I am a citizen of Heaven.-Philippians 3:20
I am God’s messenger to the world.-Acts 1:8
I am God’s disciple-maker.-Matthew 28:19
I am the salt of the earth.-Matthew 5:13
I am the light of the world.-Matthew 5:14
I am greatly loved.-Romans 5:8
There’s so much more in the Bible that God says about you!
If you are feeling rejected today, dig into the Word of God find out what God says about you. He is the One that really matters.
One last thing–begin to pray for that person that has rejected you. Pray that God would open their eyes and their hearts so that their own hurts can be healed. Pray blessings over them and love them unconditionally the way your Heavenly Father loves you.
“He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not” (Is. 53:3, ESV).
“He has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you'” (Heb. 13:5).

Survive or Thrive?

We were not created to “survive” till Jesus comes but to “thrive”. There’s a huge difference in “surviving” and “thriving.”  I looked up the word “survive” in the 1828 dictionary and it means to “to remain alive; to outlive any thing else; to live beyond any event”.  The word “thrive” means to “To grow; to advance; to increase or advance in any thing valuable; to prosper in any business; to have increase or success.” Surviving is great but Jesus came so that we we can live an “abundant” life. I don’t know about you, but in this “business” of life, I want to grow, advance and prosper rather than to just “survive” or remain alive.
But you may say you don’t understand. You don’t know my circumstances. You’re absolutely right- I don’t know but there is ONE who knows and His name is Jesus. He made a way for you on the cross and there is nothing you will ever encounter that he has not already conquered for you.  We were created to have dominion and we have been given all authority to tread on anything that comes against us and nothing (I like to say NO THING) shall harm us. So come on now… Lets THRIVE and not just survive. My Bible tells me that my God ALWAYS causes me to triumph!  He has given you POWER and AUTHORITY but you must pick up your weapons and use them so you can THRIVE and not just SURVIVE!
Luke 10:19 “Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.”

Do You See Yourself As Creative?

I’ll just be real. I have never thought of myself as creative. In fact, I can’t even count the number of times over my lifetime that I have said these words “I am not creative.” In fact, I probably said those very words yesterday. But do you know what? Those words are so far from the truth. We are all creative because we were made in God’s  image and He is “The Creator.”
I think it was just before the holidays last year when I began to do some decorating. I had never enjoyed decorating before because I didn’t see myself as creative. Suddenly, it seemed that all of these ideas ideas just jumped in my head and I began to put together some decorations for our home. What shocked me more is that I really had a blast doing it! I believe it was at that moment that God begin to teach me that He has placed creativity inside me that I did not know was there. Something sparked it and I needed to stir it from within.  I believe God has placed many things inside us but those things are laying dormant and need to be awakened and then stirred and released.
God had spoken to me last year about doing a blog but I procrastinated because of the way I saw myself which was not creative enough. God let me get away with it for a little while but the last few months, He begin to deal with me all over again until I finally said yes.
As I was praying last week about the details of my blog , I had a moment of revelation about that creativity.  I love my early mornings spending time with the Lord (my Daddy) and early last Friday, I was talking to Him about details for the blog. I asked him a specific question about how I should do a section of the blog. All of a sudden, I see a picture and in this picture is the Lord and He is smiling at me and He chuckles and I hear these words: “You decide. You are creative.” All I could do was cry because it was the revelation moment when I realized God had placed creativity inside me and He delighted watching that creativity flow through me.
God was teaching me something. He was showing me that if I am seeking the Lord and His wisdom and I am in the Word searching His heart that there are some things He just wants me to create. He wants me to decide because I am creative. He knows that if I am doing all of those things to search His heart and He says on His Word that I have the mind of Christ and I am filled with the Holy Spirit, that “God things” will flow out of me and creativity is one of those “God” things.
It reminded me of when Adam named the animals in Genesis 2. God did not tell him what to name the animals. Adam gave them their names and I believe God delighted in His creativity. Not only did Adam name the animals but you will find in verse 23 of Genesis 2 where Adam said “she shall be called woman.”
It dawned on me that morning that God wants me to “co-create” with Him. Who gets to do this? As sons and daughters of the Most High God, we get to co-create with the Creator of the universe. He wants to partner with you and I to do great things, to create things, and to fulfill His purpose here on earth.
So I want to ask you today, is there something laying dormant inside you that God wants to stir? Are you one of those people like me that said “I’m not creative”? God made you to be creative and He made you to co-create things with Him.
I encourage you today to begin to see yourself as creative the way God created you to be. There is greatness inside of you. Now begin to let it flow through you and be released from you to be a blessing to others!
Genesis 2:19-20 (NLT) “So the Lord God formed from the ground all the wild animals and all the birds of the sky. He brought them to the man to see what he would call them, and the man chose a name for each one. He gave names to all the livestock, all the birds of the sky, and all the wild animals…”

Grasshopper or Giant Killer?

I was reading Chapters 13 and 14 of Numbers about the spies that were sent into Canaan. One leader from each of the 12 tribes were sent to spy out the land.  These men were each “leaders” in their tribes.  All 12 of them saw the same thing with their natural eyes as they spied out the land.  They saw that the land flowed with milk and honey BUT they also saw giants so when they came back, they made those GIANTS really big in the eyes of the people. (Numbers 13:28)  It placed fear in them and that fear rapidly spread throughout the people.  Caleb, on the other hand, told them that they were “well able to overcome it.” (Numbers 13:30)  That word “able” means “to be able, to have power, having the capacity to prevail or succeed.”  The people made the choice to believe “popular opinion” rather than stand upon God’s promise.

I would imagine that this was the “last straw” for the Lord.  After all He had brought them through, they still lacked faith and looked at the “giants” rather than His promises to them.  Moses begins to intercede for His people in Chapter 14. We find later in that Chapter that the end result was that they did not get to enter the promised land.  All they went through since being delivered from Egypt and couldn’t enter the Promised Land. How sad is that?

Remember Caleb though, there was something different about him.  Numbers 14:24 says “But My servant Caleb, because he has a different spirit in him and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land where he went, and his descendants shall inherit it.” Caleb went against “popular opinion” and stood on God’s Word despite how big the obstacles seemed.

As I read these chapters in Numbers, something jumped out at me.  It is the importance of how a leader leads.  These men were leaders from their tribes so I would assume they were probably respected by others.  What a responsibility they were given as they headed out to spy out the land!  I hadn’t really thought about their responsibilities to lead before.  Their lack of “spiritual vision” and what they reported to the people cost an entire generation from entering into the Promised Land.  All they could see were the giants in the land rather than the blessings on the other side of the adversity.  God tells us in His Word that troubles will come but God always makes a way where there seems to be no way.  There is nothing on this earth we will face that provision hasn’t already been made.  It is vital that we look past the circumstances and see the provision and blessing on the other side of those circumstances.  Those leaders had a huge responsibility but when they saw adversity on the horizon, they chose to speak the problems. What they saw affected not only themselves but an entire generation.  They not only saw the giants but they saw themselves as grasshoppers. A grasshopper mentality is contrary to the Word of God.  How we see ourselves often makes the difference as to whether we are victorious or defeated.

I wonder how a grasshopper mentality might be described.  Perhaps thinking little of yourself; seeing yourself as insignificant; feeling inferior; thinking of yourself as someone who can’t; not liking yourself; you feel unqualified; unable to see beyond where you are or your circumstances changing.

grasshopperRather than seeing yourself as a grasshopper, begin to see yourself as a giant killer. This is not what God says about you.  God says you were created in His image; He has empowered you with His strength; He has given you talents and giftings to reflect His image; He sacrificed His only Son, Jesus, to redeem you and to make provision for everything you will ever face. He will ALWAYS cause you to triumph.I wonder how a grasshopper mentality might be described.  Perhaps thinking little of yourself; seeing yourself as insignificant; feeling inferior; thinking of yourself as someone who can’t; not liking yourself; you feel unqualified; unable to see beyond where you are or your circumstances changing. 

How we see, what we see, how we perceive and how we speak are vital as Christians.  Now only that, but how we see ourselves can make or break many things.  How we see ourselves makes a huge difference in the words we speak and the words we speak bring either life or death.  How the leaders (that were sent to spy the land) saw, perceived and spoke kept them and an entire generation from receiving the promised land and ultimately brought death to them and that generation.

God is looking for a people with a “different attitude”, an army of giant killers who will see themselves as He sees them and who will conquer the land despite life’s most difficult challenges.  He desires to raise up sons and daughters who will speak the Word in faith no matter what they see with the natural eyes, that will be relentless in moving forward and never ever give up.  God’s promises never come without adversity BUT adversity is so worth going through to get to God’s promises.

The question is- how do you see yourself? As a grasshopper or as a giant killer? Our attitudes, the way we handle adversity, the words we speak, make a difference not only in our own lives but in the lives of those around us.  While there are different levels of leadership, we all lead someone.  How are you leading? Your leadership is important!

“But My servant Caleb, because he has a different spirit in him and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land where he went, and his descendants shall inherit it.” Numbers 14:24

 

 

Patience…

Stepping stones to a strong second marriage….

As with anything else, sometimes you take three steps forward and four steps backwards. Remarriage is probably harder in many ways than first marriage. We must be relentless and have the mindset that we will not stop, give in, give up, or surrender to anything that tries to discourage us or throw us off track in our marriage. We must turn the table on the enemy when we take those steps backwards and turn them into stepping stones and determine the enemy will be so sorry he ever messed with you.
Patience Greek hupomeno or being steadfast, consistent, unwavering and unflinching. Patience means endurance which is staying power-an attitude that never gives up.
James 1:2-4 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience.  But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
I love this except from Rick Renner’s Sparkling Gems:
“I declare that I am steadfast & immovable!  I have a non-negotiable attitude of absolute determination to do what God has called me to do.  I am fixed, solid, grounded, established, anchored, unvarying, permanent & stable in my tenacity to grab hold of all that God has destined for me to accomplish with my life.  I will not stop, give in, give up, or surrender to anything that tries to discourage me or throw me off track.  I am committed to stay in the race until I have made it all the way to the end.   I declare this by faith in Jesus’ name!”