Immeasurably More

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Let’s encourage one another today! In the comments tell us how God has answered prayer immeasurably more than all you could ask or imagine!

Shalom!

#giveGodtheglory  #answeredprayer #immeasurablemore

©2018TereseJMBelme

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The Man in the Circle

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Stand in a circle?! And pray?! That is exactly what Honi the Circle Maker did. He was an ancient Israelite scholar mentioned by Josephus in the book of “Jewish Antiquities.”

Honi drew a circle and stood in it and told God that he would not move until God provided the rain that had not come that winter. Honi prayed and God brought rain.

Rulers, scholars and religious types all thought Honi had a special relationship with God. Actually, what he had was prayer. He was so closely knit to God he knew the goodness of God’s character.

Honi wasn’t satisfied with just rain. Honi’s heart ached for the people of God. He not only desired the seasonal rain, he wanted God’s rain of favor, blessing and graciousness. Honi didn’t give up, he prayed consistent and persistent, big audacious prayers, that could only be answered by God. Then he waited in expectant anticipation for God’s answer.

Audaciously bold prayers our part of our inheritance in Jesus. You will never know unless you ask and when you ask let it come from a heart that has been steeped in the truth of God’s word and promises.

Boldly go where every man, woman and child ought to go…before the throne of God, drawing circles around your prayers.

Shalom!

©2018TereseJMBelme

 

He Saves our Children

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I love the book of Isaiah, it is one of my favorites! Over the past several weeks this verse has been skipping along in my mind and every time it makes a cognizant appearance, I thank God for this promise.

Last night, our son was delivering for Postmates and there were several glitches in the system. He finally decided to simply go home, well before midnight. Our youngest lovebug was suppose to work until 1:00am but called and said she was on her way home, also well before midnight. Our oldest lovebug had celebrated the New Year several hours earlier and was already safe and sound.

While our son was slightly frustrated that he was trying to earn money and couldn’t, this verse once again made an appearance. This promise that God will save our children, ultimately is speaking about salvation. However, it can also mean, be or live in abundance, placed in freedom or be saved in battle.

I went to sleep last night thanking Him that all my ducklings were home safe on one of the craziest nights of the year. Many times His roadblocks are actually His protection.

Walking in greater faith and eyes wide open.

#pivotalyear2018

Shalom!

©2018TereseJMBelme

Loving a Prodigal

 

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Do you love a prodigal? Maybe you are or have been a prodigal. I was a bit of a prodigal in my younger years, but I’m also a rule follower and prodigal living, thankfully, lasted a very short season for me. But this post isn’t about placing labels, in fact a few different Bible translations preface this parable as ‘The Story of the Lost Son.’ And truly, that is the core of the issue. The wild, extravagant, and loose living is a by product of the condition of the heart of the one engaging in this lifestyle. Their heart has let go of what they know to be true of God and they are lost. Lost to the ones who love them and lost in themselves. BUT, they are not lost to God.

Sometimes loving a wayward loved one means giving them their inheritance, whatever that may look like, setting them free and trusting God to work out His perfect plan for their life; never giving up hope. Hope is one of the beautiful pieces of this story. The father of the lost son never gave up hope.

I wonder how long the son was gone? Can you imagine everyday the father looking down the road expecting to see his son walking toward him? Hope allowed him to be expectant. And, oh, what a glorious day when he turned his watchful eyes down the road, and there, a far distance off was his lost son come home again. Hope caused him to run toward his son in compassion and shower him with gracious provisions and welcome his son home.

There is always hope.

 

Shalom!

 

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In Between The Rains

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As I sit at my desk and look out my front window at the still quietness of the pre-dawn morning, I see storm clouds have moved in and this view reminds me of God’s faithfulness and I think about the storm clouds of life and the adversity they mostly bring.

Many will run from adversity because of the fear adversity invokes. I know, I use bolt not run. God is teaching me to stand toe to toe with adversity and to recognize the opportunity to trust in Him and depend on Him even more. To allow Him to stretch me beyond what I thought possible and to grow in spiritual maturity. To praise Him and to be overwhelmed by His Sovereignty.

With the storm clouds come rain and as the clouds move on they leave in their wake the sun. It is in between the rains that the opportunity for growth happens. Like the farmer in James 5:7, who has tended to his crops with care by tilling the ground in preparation to be sown and patiently waits for the rains that will bring new growth, we too can prepare the soil of our hearts by nurturing and cultivating our relationship with God in anticipation of new growth in us.

Precious One, hold on new growth and spiritual healing is coming.

In between the rains.

Shalom!

You Might Think I’m A Jesus Freak

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I was born, baptized, confirmed and raised in a religion that would become the foundation of my faith as a born again believer in Christ. But, I didn’t always view it that way. For a long time after asking Jesus into my heart I resented the religion I was raised in because, in my young formative years when I was taught to fear God, I feared God not in the way of reverence for him, rather I viewed God as this mean and distant person just waiting to zap me for every wrong thing that I did. So the concept of a loving Father who only wants His best for me really messed with my belief system.

Don’t get me wrong, I knew about the love of God but not of the love of God. I even started a prayer life with God when I was about seven or eight years old. Not long after I made my confirmation, in my former religion, I abruptly told my mom I wasn’t going to church any more because I prayed on my own and didn’t need anyone suggesting how I should pray or what to pray. When I conveyed this story to one of my Pastor’s years ago he told me I was a Protestant in the making. It is not by coincidence rather the divine nature of God that we belong to a faith family that is evangelical Protestants; believing that Jesus is our Savior, our Sanctifier, our Healer and our coming King.

I remember the precise moment God revealed to me that it was He who set the foundation through my religious upbringing to believe in his Son Jesus as my Lord and Savior. It was a Sunday morning and we were singing a worship song, I wish I could remember the song but I don’t, but what I do remember is during this particular song God spoke to my heart reassuring me that He was the One who had arranged the formative years of my spiritual upbringing and in that moment he released me from all the negativity I had felt. A few days later, I was walking out of Bible study, and I felt the Holy Spirit nudge me to go up to our Worship Pastor and let him know that because of the song he had chosen the previous Sunday God had put things into perspective for me and to thank him for choosing that particular song.

So, you might think I am a Jesus freak, and you wouldn’t be wrong. I am not ashamed of my faith in Jesus Christ. My life is vastly different, and in a tremendously good way, than it has ever been, especially from my high school and early adult years. And, I praise God for the redemption and deliverance from those mistakes I made back then.

I just want to share the love of Christ with others and offer the opportunity to have what I have, to help erase the negative connotation that seems to surround having a relationship with Jesus. This is especially true as I peruse social media and see all the negative things that cry out for our attention, wanting to suck us in like a vacuum. So instead of jumping into the fray I choose to post verses that bring truth and hope and peace, amidst a world where shootings, bombings and terror are commonplace. 

You may be wondering how a good and loving God allows these things to happen. This is the same God who created us to have free will. He allows his entire creation to choose Him; the Light over darkness, which is the evil. Those living in darkness are bound and ruled by evil. God, ever the gentleman, will never force anyone to believe in His Son Jesus as their Lord and Savior. He wants you to make that choice for yourself.

You might call me a Jesus freak and you would be right. 

Shalom!

God Speaks

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Not long ago I read something to the effect of God speaking only through his written word and implying that God does not talk to people on behalf of others or for the masses but that when He speaks to someone it is for that person only. This left me feeling very unsettled and because I am an internal processor it has taken me awhile to reconcile why I was feeling this way.

I believe, without any doubt, God speaks to us mainly through his word. That is why reading and studying his word is so vital to our spiritual health. But, I also believe God speaks to us in different ways; through dreams, visions, pictures and prayer. I also believe God gives us messages of encouragement and prophetic messages to be given away to others. He has done this through me many times and I always suggest to the one who is receiving a word from God through me that they take this spoken word to God and ask God what part of it is from him and what part of it can be tossed out, because many times my human-ness and my impressions can be mixed in with the message from God.

It is the hearer’s responsibility to be alone with God and pray about what was given. Oughtn’t we be doing this on a regular basis to begin with? Most of us attend church on Sunday or Bible study during the week, simply because one has been anointed by God to preach or teach does not mean we will ever get it right one hundred percent of the time, again, it is the hearer’s responsibility to go God and ask God for his discernment on what was preached or taught.

Paul gave these words of wisdom about worship in 1 Corinthians 14:26b.

When you come together, everyone has a hymn, or a word of instruction, a revelation, a tongue or an interpretation. All these must be done for the strengthening of the church. 1 Corinthians 14:26b.

When we always imply that what God speaks to one person should be only for that person we negate the truth of God’s word. All of these things including prophecy, further in the passage Paul addresses prophecy, are meant to strengthen the Bride of Christ! Have they and are they currently misused? Yes, BUT it is each believers responsibility to go to God and ask for his wisdom, his discernment on what was spoken or taught. Let’s give each other the freedom in Christ and encouragement to seek the spiritual gifts Holy Spirit wants to lavish on us; gifts that are meant for the greater good of the entire Church.

Precious One, “Do not put out the Spirit’s fire; do not treat prophecies with contempt. Test everything. Hold on to the good.” 1 Thessalonians 5:19-21.

Shalom!