Tag Archives: revelation

How Many Friends Do You Really Have Or Are You Really Friends With? Real Ones? Or Superficial Acquaintances? Are You Really a Friend of Jesus?

Superficial Acquaintances Joaynn.pngSomething to think about:

Oftentimes we confuse true friendships based on the number of people we “know” or the ones who influence us the most, or even ones we have known for a lifetime and have been through the fire with. This by no means is an indication of who your true, real friends are. Check your circle.

Social media lets you “friend” just about anyone and everything you want. Choose your friends wisely. Be careful who you call a friend or who you really are friends with. Everybody is not your friend. Once upon a time you didn’t even know them.

Think about this, would Jesus call you a friend knowing the person you are? Do you love one another as He loves us? “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends…These things I command you, that you love one another” (John 15:12 – 13, 17 ESV).

Do you obey his commandments? “You are my friends if you do what I command you” (John 15:14 ESV). Do you understand the truths he has revealed to us from the Father? By the Holy Spirit in the word of God? “No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you” (John 15:15 ESV). Are you seeking to do these things when you call Jesus your friend?

Stop calling everybody your friend just because you know them. Many people you know are only acquaintances. It is better to have one friend who you call a true friend than to have many of superficial acquaintances. True friends stick by you in good times and bad. They will listen, care, and offer help when it is needed. They will not judge you or constantly remind you of who you used to be. They will celebrate who you are and love you unconditionally as you are. Jesus love us, no matter what we’ve done. Yes, Jesus loves us!

Would Jesus call you His friend? Yes he would, if you are loving others, if you are seeking to obey his command as he desires, and if you are developing an understanding of the truths revealed by the Holy Spirit in God’s Word. Ask yourself these questions, answer them and you will know if Jesus calls you His friend.

The Bible says “there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother,” not everybody on social media. Stop calling everybody your friend. Some are superficial acquaintances. “What a FRIEND we have in Jesus.” Know the difference.

Be blessed! – JD

James 2:23 “And the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God” (ESV).

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John 14:16 “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever”

wpid-img_20140815_110821.jpgThe devil was so busy the other day. I told him “Not today, devil. Not today! You’ve been served notice. Cancel every assignment. No weapon formed shall prosper!”

It seemed nothing was going in my favor that day. I felt defeated, lost, and couldn’t see God in anything. I found myself complaining about the things I didn’t have. Telling God how sick and tired I was of being sick and tired because I lost the things I once had.

Bitterness began to set in. I started reflecting on things from my past and began to blame others for my plight just because nothing that day seemed to be turning out right. It was not until I was reminded of Job and in some way, felt the same as he did and began comparing myself to him. Even though I managed to leave out some things, I realized Job was a great example to follow.

Job lost everything. His family and possessions. He was at a crossroad in his faith. He started complaining. He allowed his desire to understand why he was suffering overwhelm him, causing him to question God. Yet he remained faithful, had patience, and endurance. He could have either cursed God and gave up. But he didn’t. He trusted God and drew from his strength to continue. He didn’t give up on God. He worshipped God alone.

He may have questioned God and was not sure why he was suffering because he clearly felt he did not do anything to deserve such punishment. As did I. I questioned “Why me?” “Why me God?” You know the things I need and don’t have. Why am I struggling?

I told him, something changed. I find that the things I used to love doing and looked forward to every day are now becoming extinct. Does that mean I’m growing? I’ve become bored with what used to bring me joy and feel it’s time to move on to something bigger and better. Does it mean you are calling me God to move to the next level? See, I don’t know and now I find I’m truly uncomfortable. I’m struggling.

At times I feel I don’t have strength to do what has been so simple for me. Yet I’m no longer satisfied with just doing something. I desire to do more with the gifts God has given me. Pray for me. It’s not that I don’t want to keep doing what I do. It’s just that I want to do something more than what I’m doing.

I had to get myself together and collect my thoughts. I rose out of bed. I sat on the edge as I began to talk to God and express my frustration and fears. I told him about the things I’m struggling with. And as I’m talking something came to me. God revealed something incredible to me.

And I said to him, “Why not take me through trials and tribulations, almost to the point of death and desperation. That I may lose myself until I find hope in you God. I don’t ask why me but why not me? Why not use me Lord? Let your will, not my will, be done. I come to you with open arms. Use me Lord!”

God said to me “Dear child, I have seen your efforts and know how much you are trying to grow and do the work of the Lord but you cannot do this alone. Don’t worry. Help is on the way. I’m going to send you a blessing that will guide you in this journey.”

I realized no matter how much I read the word, study, and meditate, there was something missing in my walk. I began to repent and confess my wrongs to God. I knew in the end this would shape me for service to others.

John 14:16 tells me, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever.”  This assures me the Holy Spirit is on my side. It is working for and with me. I will live as God wants and build God’s kingdom.

I will never stop spreading words of encouragement, inspiration, or the love of God. I just feel deep inside I need to be doing more. Pray for me as I pray for myself. Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts (Psalm 139:23).

Search for sin and please point out things I’m not doing right. Show me any and all wrong motives that may be behind the things I’m feeling. When you show me what I’ve done, I will repent and seek forgiveness. I will walk in your ways. I am forgiven.

There’s a struggle inside each of us. There’s someone fighting a battle somewhere much harder than any of us. Pray. God will keep watch over us.

Every day I have to ask God for forgiveness. I admit I’m not a saint. I’m a sinner. At times, I wrestle with my flesh. And don’t get it right in the beginning. I won’t say a word. It’s for the good. I watch, I listen, then take it to God. I put it in his hands. I don’t have to do a thing. I leave it up to Him.

Be blessed! -JD

Colossians 3:1-41 If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. 3 For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.” (ESV)

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Wheat or Chaff? God Knows Best

Matthew 13I was on my way home leaving my sister’s house yesterday when the bus stopped in the middle of the street for some odd reason and was sitting in the street. Before taking off, I heard this voice that sounded familiar and looked up to see my sister’s friend who is also my friend that we call our sister at my sister’s house urging me to turn back around and come back to the house. Of which I did. Not realizing this particular event would be a time where God would send revelation, affirmation, and out of an unusual circumstance will come confirmation.

My twin sister’s husband passed earlier in the week and I had been visiting with her the past few days. Our sister friend had been over to the house the day before and promised to return the next day with a prepared meal for my sister but I had not seen her while I was there and thought she had changed her mind in coming.

I gathered my things and went back to my sister’s house. We sat and talked about odd things when somehow she began to talk about a vision God gave her regarding a business she foresaw and is currently moving forward with. After hearing her wonderful account of God’s promise for her future, we had a long talk about my current business endeavor.

I expressed to her and her husband my fears and the things that are keeping me bound that I feel is contributing to my inability to be confident God is with me in this journey. She began to pour into my spirit affirmation and confirmation of God’s promises in my life. She gave me so much courage, insight, and inspiration in her provision of the tools I would need to get started and even offered to help me along the journey with no expectations or rewards and expressed she is doing it simply because of her love for God and her desire to glorify God.

Then something struck me. God placed her in my path unsuspectingly because there was something he needed to reveal to me. Something he needed me to know. And by his grace I was in the right place at the right time. For which I am thankful.

You see, after careful reflection, I realized after years of trials, struggles, and tribulations, God had to sit me down alone to get my attention before preparing me for the journey ahead. As well as separate the wheat from chaff in order to do his work. He began separating me from things and people that he felt were no longer required in this season of my life in order that I may effectively serve him and live an abundant life.

I also had to learn in this season that I could no longer live life in the flesh even when warring against the spirit. Something had to die in order that something may live. And it was me. I had to die to my flesh in order that Jesus may live in me. “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me” (Gal 2:20). And during this time I found that my relationship with God has changed and I am growing spiritually and closer to Jesus.

Yes, I may have gone through trials and mental anguish and I may have suffered through some things but it was during this time God was taking me through a process. My faith was being tested and through the test I had to make a decision to which direction I would go, either separate myself from the things that would separate me from God or God would separate things from me he knew would separate me from Him in order that I may produce the fruit of righteousness in my life and grow spiritually. Assured nothing and no one will ever separate me from God because I live by the Spirit and the Spirit lives in me. I chose to live God’s way and live life more abundantly.

I also believed God needed me to learn to be patient as I waited on him, not get weary in well-doing and do not give up, for in due season I shall reap a harvest of blessings should I faint not. I began to sit in awe and admiration of God thanking him for all I’ve been through, no matter how long I have been going through. As I began to reflect on the many years I have struggled and fought to maintain, I began to think about how awesome God is. He reigns! I concluded there was a reason God needed me to be in the seasons I found myself in at the times I found myself in because it was necessary. It was all for his glory.

We all will go through a season in life that will bring insurmountable challenges we may never understand. Yet hold on to God’s unchanging hands. Trials strengthen you. Tests refine you. Patience is a virtue. When your faith is tested God’s refining you. He’s perfecting the spiritual gifts in you. Trials and tests are meant to challenge your faith. Be encouraged! Challenges are meant to help you grow while you wait. Don’t give up. Wait on the Lord. Have faith. Wait I say, on the Lord.”

Next month will be the beginning of a new season in my life and I am looking forward to what God has in store for me. I love the Lord so much and in all I do I will give him glory! I’m claiming it. I’m naming it! I’m speaking it into existence. God said it. I believe it. That settles it! Thanks for listening.

Be blessed! -JD

Matthew 13:24-3024 Jesus told them another parable: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field. 25 But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat, and went away. 26 When the wheat sprouted and formed heads, then the weeds also appeared. 27 “The owner’s servants came to him and said, ‘Sir, didn’t you sow good seed in your field? Where then did the weeds come from?’ 28 “‘An enemy did this,’ he replied. “The servants asked him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’ 29 “‘No,’ he answered, ‘because while you are pulling the weeds, you may uproot the wheat with them. 30 Let both grow together until the harvest. At that time I will tell the harvesters: First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles to be burned; then gather the wheat and bring it into my barn.’” (NIV)

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How Do You Handle Uncertainty?

There was a time in my life where I could not see God in anything or any area of my selfish world. A time when nothing made sense even when I thought I made sense based on decisions I chose to make. A time when I thought I was exempt from life’s challenges because I believed I had everything figured out, especially when there was doubt.

I learned much later in life that without God, my life meant nothing. Without God my life was meaningless. And without God nothing would make sense if I continued to rely solely on myself for answers. Change brought about a revelation to the things I refused to see for many years, which in turn revealed how much I needed God to live as only he knew I could.

Life presents experiences that will reveal things we choose not to be cognizant of but at some point will become conscious of when the broken cycle continuously fails. Oftentimes, it will take a tragic or traumatic event to define a moment in our lives where we have no choice but to submit or give in to the thing that defeats us. Something I can truly identify with because it happened to me.

I learned life brings about change regardless of who we are. As such, some form of suffering will exist regardless of what we see. It is the ultimate reliance on God that we shall find peace, free from suffering and the complexities of this world. Because a silent cry cannot be heard. But a cry from the heart will flow endlessly through the provision of love and support.

I realized we can no longer try to fix or solve every problem in our life based on what we’ve repeatedly tried to do on our own. Nor can we be dependent on someone else’s experience to justify what we fail to do with our own spiritually when faced with obstacles. I understood spirituality is not based on circumstances or human experience, but based in part on one’s individual spiritual experience.

When things are at its worst and there’s nowhere to turn, we have a tendency to go to God. As soon things are not in our favor we become desperate and find ourselves depicting the life of an “Emergency Christian” looking for a “Temporary Fix.” Telling God, “Lord, if you get me out of this, I will” or “If you do this one thing…I promise I will”; making false promises in order to have your way. All the while creating a life filled with void, absent of God.

To vacillate back and forth in your spirituality based on your circumstances is not good.

To continue to wrestle against God is contentious. You can’t run from God. You can’t choose times when it is convenient for you to have a relationship with Him. You cannot have a part-time relationship with a full-time problem because life will catch up with you at some point.

God has a way of letting you know who he is by what does. His WILL is evidence. He will prove to others who he is when life takes a sudden turn. HIS WILL is done. Not yours.

God will move you far away to speak to you in order to show you his Glory. God will put you in a place where he wants to get your undivided attention. He will create a situation to separate you from the things he is tired of; your dependence on someone else’s experience to excuse accountability for your own actions.

A journey is one that consist of human futility but also should be of Christian readiness. At the same time, it will require your willingness to have a personal experience with your walk.

To move in your Christian journey, you will have to have a personal experience with God.

Personal experiences create the ability to walk by faith and not by sight of that which you see in your life.

Personal experiences become the foundation of a life built upon prayer and confidence in God’s ability to do what he KNOWS is best and not what you THINK is best. Your experience with God will change your life for the good, forever.

“A contentious spirit is a sin of unbelief.” The choices you make will determine the life you will have. When you deny God’s existence in your life, nothing can prevent YOU from having a personal walk with God but YOU. When you make choices based on your own knowledge and wisdom and not Gods’, it’s futile. You cannot know God and lack confidence in the work he does. Your life must be a reflection of it.

Affirm to yourself, “I am not an ordinary Christian in your sight God. You are real in my life. I am an extraordinary Christian in your presence no matter what I see. It is by my experiences you’ve shown me. The faithful being you are. You’ve brought me this far.”

God has to be your first start. Build a relationship with Him. Don’t let the enemy win. Don’t make false promises thinking you are the only one that can bring resolve to matters of the heart. God’s love never fails. From his word you shall never depart.

God will translate your lack of sense into a language He understands. He wants to know “What kind of experience you’ve had to know who I am?” “What is it I’ve shown you not in the people you trust, but in who you say I am?” Because when you know who I am, you know what I will do. This will carry you through. And remove a life filled with never knowing what I AM to you.

Pray. Be conscious of the manner in which you pray. No one can pray for what you know you need, for where you hurt, or how you feel. You are the only one who can do this.

If you pray and pray right, God will answer right away. Pray with sincerity. Tell Him, “Lord I want to know for myself. No one else can do it for me. I need your help.”

When you respond in the right way, God will bless your life. OTHERS will see HIS will through your strife. However, when you respond in your own way, YOU will see YOUR will in the things you do. Something you must let go of and live life anew.

Believe God can do all things. Let HIS WILL be done. Remove yourself from the plan. Put it all in God’s hands. Let God order your steps. Trust him and let go because if you don’t this is what your life will show; a life filled with sin in rebellion against him.

We mustn’t strive against the things God sends in his providence. As the Lord instructs, do. It will make life much better for you.

In the face of uncertainty, handle it with care. Know that God is with you and will not let you handle more than what he knows you can bear. Know that God will instruct you on what to do. Through the Word designed specifically for you.

And if all else fails, remember what Jesus told Simon Bar-Jonah when he reminded him of who he was. It will help you to remember too. And when in doubt, know it is God you are to solely rely on because it is only through Jesus Christ you will receive divine direction.

Matthew 16:17 “Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven.”

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