Faith

Faith
 

Be Still

"If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord" (James 1:5-7). Sometimes we need a God-perspective to understand faith principles. Our Father is a good God. He loves us and He has provided a way through Jesus for us to come boldly to ...
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Who Let the Dogs Out?

Grrrr... That's what my flesh was saying at 4:39am one morning when I was awakened (again) by the never-ending barking of my dogs. But what made me get out of bed and deal with them was compassion for my neighbors! They have never complained to us, but I imagine they've been tempted to secretly point a gun over the fence... I know I have. But instead, I simply got out of bed and found the biggest grandstand cup I could find and filled it with water. As I went out the back (at what is now 4:47am), the dogs barked ...
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Get Back Up and Walk By Faith!

Life happens to all of us. Even though I've been a Christian for many years, recently I found myself in a place spiritually where I couldn't seem to get on top of things. Circumstances were weighing me down causing me to wear my emotions on my sleeve. I was not being very effective because I had lost some of my joy and energy. My focus was on what I could see. I'm so thankful to God for His word because he used it to bring me into a better place. A few days ago I was reading in II Corinthians ...
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Take Heart

“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit--fruit that will last--and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.” It was a year ago from the day I’m writing this, that we found out we were expecting.. our duo was becoming a trio! And soon after our son Jude was born, we picked up our lives to relocate to Upstate, NY, to answer a call to full time ministry. Dreams that had been engraved in my heart since a young girl, unraveling over ...
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Nothing But The Truth

If you've ever watched a movie with a courtroom scene in it, or been in a courtroom in person yourself, you have probably seen someone take an oath and be asked to place their hand on the Bible and swear or affirm to tell "...the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God." While thinking about writing this article, I did a little research. One article I read stood out to me and said that the oath taken before testifying was meant to "bind the conscience of the witness to tell the truth" in order ...
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Little Eyes Are Watching

My little eyes are watching All you say and do And when I grow up big and tall I want to be like you. My little ears are listening To everything you say I am learning how to grow up To be like you someday. So be careful how you teach me To be the person that you are. You’re a knight in shining armor You’re my brightest shining star. - big brother- I clearly remember the very first time I read this poem. It was my senior year in high school, and a mom of a Jr. high girl ...
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New Doesn’t Mean Comfortable

“It’s a new season, a new day. It’s also your choice if you will walk in the new thing or if you will continue to walk in the comfort of yesterday.” The first entry of my journal for 2017 seemed exciting. A new season sounds thrilling and attractive, much like a new pair of Louboutins. I confidently walked into 2017 ready to wear my new season with grace and strength. What had not registered on my spirit at that moment were the words, “your choice”. I would have to make a choice to move forward or stay comfortable. What I ...
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Unexpected Battles

"Then David and the people that were with him lifted up their voice and wept, until they had no more power to weep" (1 Samuel 30:3-4) They didn't see it coming...at all. David and his men were returning home from a time of raids and battles. They had been successful, but war is war and I can imagine how ready they were to get back to their families. I'm not sure of the landscape of Ziklag, but at some point coming around a bend, over a hill, or just off in the distance they realize something is wrong. "...they found ...
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How to Pray Scripturally for our Nation

As we enter the final week before the critical election in America, we must acknowledge that we do not have all wisdom or understanding, but that we have a God who does. I exhort you to join me in contending for His will in our nation. Here are some scriptural prayers you can pray: PRAY FOR EYES TO BE OPENED We pray for the eyes of all Americans to be flooded with spiritual light, so that they would see and pursue His destiny. We also pray for His power to work through those who believe. Ephesians 1:17-19 (NKJV Strong's,) that ...
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Increase Our Faith

And the apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith" (Luke 17:5). Wow. That can't be the last time the Lord heard such a request. Almost daily, I face something personally, or I cross paths with someone going through a rough time who needs encouragement in their faith. Just recently, I was visiting with a woman who was updating me on her situation. I had ministered to her a couple of weeks prior, and as I sat and listened I was delighted as I observed her "increased" faith. She wasn't completely out of the woods yet, but she had made ...
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Where are you God?

Dear God: Where are you? Why haven't you answered my prayers? I have cried out to you night after night asking you to make my daddy stop drinking. And here I am again, listening to the brutality of his drunken rage at 2:00 in the morning. The screaming and yelling, slamming of doors, foul language, and the hateful statement that he made about me. Why are you letting this continue? It has been going on for over 10 years. Please, won't you make it stop? It is the middle of summer, and I am buried under a pile of covers ...
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Where I Stand

These days everyone wants to know "who you are" in an effort to figure out "where you stand" on the insane amount of issues going on in the world right now. The world, and even some Christians, will judge "where I stand" based on what they see and think they know about me as a person from what they see. For example, at first glance I am black/African-American, and because of that - not all people - but some will assume I think and feel a certain way about various issues. Another example - I am a female. Once again, ...
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My Strong Displeasure

I love it when my teenage daughter opens up and randomly starts sharing her thoughts with me. I've learned however, to let her express her feelings without jumping in too soon with a "mom redirection" when her venting appears to be getting the best of her. She's told me more than once, "Mom, can't I just tell you how I'm feeling before you correct me?" She's right of course. I just know the ways the enemy gets his little hooks in our heart so I'm careful to help her recognize it too. Recently, we went to get a coke after ...
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The Promise of Hope

This rainy Thanksgiving weekend my social feeds have been flooded with beautiful images of Christmas trees and homes filling with red and green, gold and silver. Families preparing for what most might say is the most cherished holidays of the year. Christmas has always been my favorite and this year is going to be a little more special than normal. While everyone else is decorating, I will be spending this week packing! YAY! We are completely overwhelmed with gratefulness as our family takes a step forward into one of God's promises to us! One that has been several years in ...
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Seeds of Harvest

John 3:33 ...In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain, undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.] Amplified. Fall is one of my favorite seasons… Aside from getting to wear boots and scarves, the leaves are creating a beautiful canvas of color. And pumpkins.. need I say more? My South African husband endures my obsession.. tolerating pumpkin in just about everything for three months out of the year. Pumpkin is not ...
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We Shall Not Be Moved

I think one of the things I love the most about being raised in church is the wonderful memory of the songs we sang in praise and worship services each week. It amazes me how at different times when facing difficult situations, a song will come up in my heart that I may not have thought about in years! It's as though they are stored there for the Holy Spirit to bring up at just the right time to bring encouragement and comfort, and to remind me of truths from the Word to help in times of need. One such ...
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The Word Speaks

I love the word of God. It is life to those who find it. In 1994, two years after my husband and I were married, we decided we wanted to have children. We were very excited about the idea and had great hope! Months went by and then years. No children. I read books, made lists of scriptures and confessed, “this is the month!” for 99 months. I bought baby gifts for every pregnant woman I knew and celebrated with them at their showers. Then, I would go home and cry as I watched the years go by and my ...
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Right On Time

Have you ever felt like you are in a holding pattern? Circling the same airport, waiting to land? I certainly have! In fact, it best describes the season of life in which I find myself right now. Just like that airplane, I feel as if I have been circling the same promises in scripture and in prayer for months and months, waiting for the answer to be manifested in this natural realm in which I live. Sometimes in the waiting, we can become weary, for I think waiting is one of the hardest things to do. Galatians 6:9 tells us ...
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Out of Control

She’s out of control; he’s out of control, they’re out of control, I’m out of control . . . . sad to say, but this has become a very popular phrase in the 21st Century. According to Dictionary.com the definition for ‘out of control’ is: not under management or direction; unmanageable or wild. Dictionary.com's 21st Century Lexicon follows suit with this expanded phrase for ‘out of control’ // Also, out of hand. No longer under management, direction, or regulation; unmanageable or unruly. For example, Housing costs are out of control, or the children were getting out of hand again. The ...
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You Wait For Me

In hopeless and helpless despair you watch Knowing, feeling, understanding, holding You watch, you see, you wait, you hear I am not alone, you are here I know you wait and wait and wait In darkness of the mind , in joy of the heart you wait You see and you know me In every way you know me You feel me You see me You understand me Can I see you? Do I feel you? Do I understand you? I want to Please help me to see Without you there is nothing for me I will hold onto you ...
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Would Ya Look At That Dirt Devil

"By faith we understand that the worlds were set in order at God’s command, so that the visible has its origin in the invisible." Hebrews 11:3 I grew up amongst corn and soybean fields, so there was a lot of open field around me. On occasion, when the wind started blowing, a dirt devil would form. I have no idea where the name came from, but this swirling funnel of dirt and debris would move across the ground for a bit, then stop, dropping all the dirt and debris that was within it. I want to use this image to ...
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What If

The beautiful girl in the picture hiding behind the yellow balloon is my oldest daughter, Ethecie. (She would want you to know it is pronounced Etessee, without the "h.") She is 12 years old and joined our family from her home country of Haiti when she was 9. A conversation with her recently made me think of how the disciples must have felt during this time we celebrate as Easter weekend.She heard my husband and I discussing a person who had passed away due to cancer. A few minutes later she came to me and said, "Mommy, what if you ...
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Then All of A Sudden

And Then All of the Sudden... Scripture: "But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day." 2 Peter 3:8 We have a crabapple tree outside of our bedroom window. Now, I've never found a use for the crabapples (I haven't tried real hard either), but this tree has the most beautiful blooms in the spring of each year. They are a beautiful pink color and the tree is just covered with them. Each spring, I look forward to the beauty of this tree ...
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Fragrant Life

My childhood memories are full of beautiful smells. My parents owned flower shops and I grew up running the aisles and sneaking into the cooler. Oh, I can remember walking in that cooler just to smell how amazing it was when it was full of flowers. I especially loved to take a rose and hold it up to my lips and feel the soft petals and just breathe. It has to be one of the most wonderful aromas in life! Did you know that in the Spirit our life is to be a sweet smelling fragrance to God? It’s true, ...
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Still Standing

As a child, my father would sometimes watch boxing matches at night. I distinctly remember the announcers in Atlantic City or other places who would get up and say in their most entertaining voices, “Are you ready to rumble?” Boxing was not a sport I was fond of, but watching it was better than going to bed, so I’d stay up and watch with dad. I think my eyes were covered for most of the matches as each boxer would give his best punches to try to send the other one down to the canvas with a knockout blow. I ...
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Spinning, Spinning, Spinning…& Standing

Scripture: Eph. 6:13 - "Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand." Do you remember as a child spinning round and round, getting very dizzy and then trying to walk? As you spun round and round, you lost control of your balance and then would giggle and giggle at the sight of trying to walk as if you had balance. The staggering and stumbling were quite a sight! I would like to suggest that there will ...
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Speak to Your Mountain

With the New Year comes the resolve to lose weight again for many people. For me this has always been an on-going mountain in my life. I guarantee that I have circled this mountain more times than the Israelites did theirs in the desert. I cry out to God, “Please, Lord, help me lose this weight!” I start the insane climb of dieting and exercise. I lose it and then slowly it creeps back on without fail. I slide back down the mountain in the exact spot I started. I have often asked God, “Why can’t I keep this weight ...
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Scars

"Lord, thank you for saving me from the grasp of hell... and from the scars of hell." This is what recently came out of my heart as I prayed and thanked God for His love and mercy. Even as I spoke it, I was startled by my own words. But it was so true ... not only have we been saved from the very grasp of hell, but if we'll allow God to fully transform us, the scars of "hell on earth" fade from view, and except for a faint memory, become almost non-existent. I was once a people-pleaser, so ...
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Pull Hard and Don’t Let Go

Our youngest daughter, Michaela is 10 years old. For the past two years, she has been dealing with lactose and gluten intolerance. Although we have meds that allow her to consume dairy products with no ramifications, there are no meds available for the gluten issue. So, the end result is a gluten-free diet. This can be a bit of damper when it comes to birthday celebrations and parties at school as cookies, cakes, snack type finger foods, etc. most generally all contain gluten. Since we uncovered the issue two years ago,we have been standing in faith believing for complete healing ...
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Please Hold On

“Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)” Hebrews 10:22-23 Did you ever wonder if you were a little bit strange? I wonder that about myself all the time! It seems that God speaks to me through the smallest details and events in life. Yet they are things that remind me of biblical concepts that need to be a vital part of my ...
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Petals In My Pages

“Look to the Lord and His strength; seek His face always. Remember the wonders He has done.” ~I Chronicles 16: 11 - 12 On our first missions trip, many moons ago… okay it was exactly 17 years ago next month, I started a little tradition all my own. We landed in Greece, in route to India, where we spent a week in the quaintest little apartment that belonged to the son of a pastor friend. The outdoor balconies so mixed in with the hallways of the home that, unlike in America, they are included as part of your living space ...
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Oh Patience, I Need You

It’s an understated & annoying word, one that none of us truly likes or even remotely enjoys. It’s something that makes us want to scream & yet we know we have to endure it. Oh, patience, how we need more of you! Have you ever shared these feelings with me? Well, they are common & often misunderstood by others. We hear so much about the amazing message of faith, but often too little about its other partner quite necessary to bring about results! All of us enjoy hearing about instant miracles & prayer requests that come about almost as fast ...
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Not Hard Just Different

Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee. Jeremiah 32:17 Have you ever heard a song that brought back a memory to you? Maybe a love song that reminds you of your parents, or a crazy song that reminds you of your teenage years, or better yet a worship song that takes you back to wonderful experiences you've had in God. I recently heard a song that took my mind back to a lesson I was taught years ago that ...
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Living In A Dream

When the LORD turned again the captivity of Zion, we were like them that dream. Then was our mouth filled with laughter, and our tongue with singing: then said they among the heathen, The LORD hath done great things for them. The LORD hath done great things for us; whereof we are glad. Psalm 126:1-3 One of the most familiar and inspiring phrases recorded in American history were spoken by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. when he said in a famous speech, “I have a dream.” God used those words and the prayers and work of countless others to change ...
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In Face of Difficulty

Is it possible to face difficult situations, yet shine in the face of it all? Absolutely! As I look in the Word of God at some of the greatest miracles, both Old & New Testament, I have realized that so often they are birthed out of great distress. It’s true! Surrounding most of the great miracles that stand out so brightly in the Bible, we can find economic disaster, grave sickness & heavy persecutions. Out of circumstances like these emerge the miracles we preach about. The examples are endless, just like the widow who had no food in the face ...
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He Loves Me

As we enter the Christmas season, I am once again struck by the awesomeness of God’s incredible love for us manifested in the Christmas story. In the most profound display of true agape love ever to occur, God sent His most precious gift to live, die and rise again for broken humanity – Himself in the person of Jesus Christ. It is mind-boggling to me that so much love not only exists, but is available to me as a free gift. Although I enjoy the trees, caroling, and gift giving, the true wonder of Christmas still lies in John 3:16 ...
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Go Ahead and Jump In

"For a great door and effectual is opened to me, and there are many adversaries." 1 Cor. 16:9 If you have children old enough to swim, you've probably engaged in the activity I'm about to describe. Somewhere around the age of 2-3 years, you put them on the side of the pool and then coax them to jump into your arms. There may be some apprehension initially, but they finally jump. They may come up from that water coughing and sputtering, they may have gotten water in their nose and it burns, or they may be feeling the effects of ...
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Don’t Run, Listen

In Matt 1:20-23 Joseph had just found out that Mary was pregnant. I’m sure he was flooded with anger, disappointment and fear. The Bible tells us that instead of putting Mary on display, openly shaming her, he tried to figure out a way to quietly escape from the situation. Fear, confusion and pain can cause us to do things that may seem right at the moment, but are actually miles away from what the Lord is asking us to do.How could it be wrong to cover Mary’s “problem”? Wasn’t Joseph being gracious by not openly disgracing her? Yes. He was ...
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Don’t Lose Heart

May I ask what you believe? That may sound like a funny question, but there are so many things fighting for our attention these days, that is quite possible to lose sight of what we really believe. David said, "I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living" (Psalm 27:13). So, I'll ask again... what are you believing? Do you, like David, believe you will see the goodness of God in this lifetime? I do. You will find written in the front of my Bible: ...
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Churning Waves

Have you ever thought, “ I just need something awesome to happen or I need an experience with God”, the need for something to break the barrage of storms and challenges that you face in life? Sure, we all do. It’s easy to think that an “experience” will be the thing to bring change. That some how, having an experience will cause the clouds to break to reveal blue skies so that song birds will start singing again in your life. Sounds good right. The problem is that experiences, although supernatural and amazing, can end up just being powerful memories ...
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After God’s Own Heart

‘I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My own heart, who will do all My will.’Acts13:22 What does it mean that David was a man after God’s own heart? I have heard it said that Romans went after power, the Greeks after knowledge, this is what they sought, and David went after God’s heart. In his essence David was a sheperd who was chosen to be king because of his relationship He had with God. A relationship which I believe only was enhanced as he developed and entered into what the Lord had for him. He ...
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A Season to Be Patient

Patience…oooo it’s such a yucky little word. It’s a virtue that seems very difficult to embrace. Do we have to be patient? Well, I think as we take a little glance into the heart of God today, we will all agree that this one little word can change our entire worlds. It is simply a requirement in bringing forth the promises of God. I was so challenged this week while reading a post from Dr. T.L. Osborn on Lk 8:11-15. So often we think of sowing and reaping in terms of giving, but this sure brings out an insightful new ...
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