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Forgiveness

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Thursday August 9th, 2012

 

Forgiveness = Love & Gratefulness

 

Luke 7: 36-50

Jesus Anointed by a Sinful Woman

36 When one of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, he went to the Pharisee’s house and reclined at the table. 37 A woman in that town who lived a sinful life learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, so she came there with an alabaster jar of perfume. 38 As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them.

39 When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is—that she is a sinner.”

40 Jesus answered him, “Simon, I have something to tell you.”

“Tell me, teacher,” he said.

41 “Two people owed money to a certain moneylender. One owed him five hundred denarii,[a] and the other fifty. 42 Neither of them had the money to pay him back, so he forgave the debts of both. Now which of them will love him more?”

43 Simon replied, “I suppose the one who had the bigger debt forgiven.”

“You have judged correctly,” Jesus said.

44 Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You did not give me any water for my feet, but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You did not give me a kiss, but this woman, from the time I entered, has not stopped kissing my feet. 46 You did not put oil on my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet. 47 Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.”

48 Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”

49 The other guests began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”

50 Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

 

Discussion Questions:

1) How do you feel when you are forgiven for something you did?

2) Is it difficult for you to forgive or is it difficult?

3) Why should we forgive?

4) What are some long-term effects of unforgiveness?

 

God Bless All of those who attended this gathering. Hope everyone has a great week!

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Posted by on August 14, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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How To Spend Time With God?

“Whenever I get lonely, I know that it’s God calling me back to fellowship with Him. So take that lonely feeling & give it to God. Pour out.”

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Before we get started into the basics..We must put our relationship with God in perspective. It’s a marriage. WE are His church and Jesus is the Christ. The body of believers that make up the Church are collectively called bride of Christ. As Bridegroom, Jesus gave His life for His bride, “to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word” (Ephesians 5:25-26), with it, the eternal union of Christ and His bride will be actualized (Revelation 19:7-921:1-2). (this is Jesus dying for our sins & making us whole. Allah, Buddha, Mary or any other religion didn’t save us or die for us. Christ did. Thus, CHRIST is the door–so through CHRIST are your sins forgiven, not anyone or anything else.)
I then read in Isaiah 54:5 that said “The Maker is my Husband” and Jeremiah 3:14: “Turn, O backsliding children, says the LORD; for I am married unto you.” I went throughout the scripture because I wanted to understand the relationship between GOD & us through Jesus. I looked up a ton of scriptures on God’s love for me and it helped me to understand God’s personality & how I can have a relationship with God the Holy Spirit through Jesus Christ. I loved those two above scriptures because it made me realize HOW close I should be to Christ. If He’s my husband I need to REALLY act like I’m married to Him & not CHEAT on Him with this world.

Whenever I slip on spending time with God I tend to be more touchy, more “emotional” and people tend to get on my nerves. lol Why? Because I’m empty. HE fulfills me, not working a million hours at work, a man, a job, a marriage, kids or anything else. I can then sense God pulling on my heart.. telling me that HE misses me. Does God miss you? Do you acknowledge Him? Start today.
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How To Spend Time With God

1. SET a time & stick with it. Statistics show that if you do something for 21 days it will become a habit. I like to spend time with God FIRST thing in the morning. It sets the tone for the day & it puts life in perspective. When you first get started, you’re GOING to get attacked. You’ll be sleepy, bored, tired, drained & you’ll find a million reasons to sleep in. Just fight through it & TELL your flesh what to do. Remember that you’re supposed to be controlling it–it’s not supposed to be controlling you.

2. Find a place to have your quiet time everyday. When I lived in a studio in New York years ago with a roommate, I had my quiet time in the bathroom. It didn’t matter WHERE I did it.. I just needed HIM. Now, thankfully, I have more room to jump around. I also love worshipping God in different places.. different hotels, beaches, whenever–however. So if you’re traveling a ton–don’t worry! Just find a place that is NOT distracting you from that time.

3. Set the atmosphere. I like to put worship music on when I first get started. When you’re pouring out your heart to God & worshipping Him–it’s nice to have beautiful music playing in the background. I look at it like a brush scrubbing off of your “funk” of stresses, worries and cares. It sets your heart to receive your study time & helps de-clutter your mind because you’re taking the focus from YOU & your stuff to Jesus. While I’m playing the worship music, I have a blast! I dance, sing, I fall flat on my face before God, cry out to Him, pray in the tongues & pray for others.

My favorite worship singers: Jesus Culture, Kari Jobe, Hillsong, Jeremy Riddle & New Life Worship

4. Get quiet. After I pour out to God.. I grab my journal & I start journaling to God. I just write whatever He puts on my heart.. during these times, He begins to deal with me about what’s going on in my life, ministry, work, jobs, family, and in the world in general. I have pages and pages of journals since I first got saved in 2003. It’s so amazing to see the things that God said come to pass from when I was 20.

5. Talk to God. Don’t go to God all deep. TALK to Him the way you would talk to a very close friend. He’s not in the thee’s & “thou’s”–I can’t talk to God all deep. I need to be myself and if He’s going to be my Everything, I have to be real with Him. So when I first got saved (and to this day) I go to God… and say .. “Good morning Daddy!!! I’m suuuuuuuuuper excited about today.. I have a brand new day to worship you with my life–I’m so grateful, so thankful for you.  You’re everything to me. I’m nothing without you..” Sometimes, I cook breakfast for Him & I’ll sit & just talk to Him. I may say “Lord, this really bothered me, or this MADE me mad and I know it’s wrong but darnit

6. Pull out your bibles! Grab your pen & paper. It’s time to LEARN. Usually, God places a certain scripture on my heart but if you’re just getting started, I recommend you all to read John first, then Matthew, Mark and Luke. Then go into Acts and read through the New Testament. Most of the New Testament is prophecy that comes to pass from the Old Testament. Be sure to study Romans and Philippians. Grasp an understanding that the law in the Old Testament has been fulfilled when Jesus came to the earth & NOW you’re saved by FAITH through Christ Jesus. I also do this.. if I’m struggling in a certain area–I always look up EVERY scripture on that area & meditate on it for awhile. I write out the scriptures in long hand and put them notecards. And I STARE at them, think about them, study them out, look up the definitions on each word. When you cross reference & pull out your bible dictionary.. the Holy Spirit is going to take you ALL over & give you so much “word behind the word.” THEN when stupid thoughts come in–I captured the thought & I MADE it obey Christ. (2 Cor. 10:5). I had SOMETHING in my heart that made it obey Christ. You cannot be empty.. fighting with willpower.

Some of my favorite study bibles & resources:

  1. Life Application Study Bible
  2. Joyce Meyer Everyday Living Bible
  3. Dakes Study Bible
  4. Students Life Application Bible
  5. NASB Cross Reference Bible
  6. The Power of Speaking God’s Word by Joyce Meyer (a small concordance–perfect for quick studying)
  7. Beth Moore has some great study resources. I always recommend a book/question study.
 
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Posted by on August 8, 2012 in Lessons

 

Where is my Adam?

Where is my Adam?
Ever asked yourself this question? I get this question a TON from my sisters in Christ. They are trying to be patient as they watch everybody else change their relationship status on Facebook from .. Single.. to “In a Relationship” to “Engaged” & then “Married”– and every summer they dread getting fifty million wedding invitations.
You could be serving Jesus with ALL of your heart and pushing a certain age. As the world around you seems to be skipping off in the wind, you may feel like WHEN is my time GOD??! WHEN is my ADAM going to WAKE up and find me???!  God, I serve you– I LIVE for you– I serve in the church, I’m a virgin or a born again virgin– I’m turning down these guys left and right because they are a hot mess and they’re sorta saved. I mean, I deserve a great guy. I want kids, I want to start a family, I’m a good catch! WHAT is the issue GOD??!??! You may paste.. a smile on your face but deep down, its a lingering question in your heart. At times, you get down about it every now and then. My sister in Christ.. I want to encourage you– YOU are being PREPARED for not just a man– but the very PURPOSE you were being created for. It’s much bigger than you having a pair of thighs in your bed.
So if you ever asked yourself this question. I pray that this encourages you.
If you don’t understand what I mean about your Adam waking up.. check this out these quick summaries:
Genesis 2:18- “It’s NOT good for man to be alone—I’m going to create a help meet for him.” (ladies, I didn’t write it—God did) YOU’RE a HELP-MEET. God has placed so many beautiful gifts inside of you to HELP your man to fulfill everything that God has called him to do. That doesn’t mean you don’t have a career or a life as I work an own a consulting company where I work full time and I’m in ministry full time.  The above scripture doesn’t say—I’m going to create a leader for him. So stop trying to run your man. (I’ll blog about the 2012 woman at later time)
Then, Adam gave PURPOSE to every thing in verse 19, 20 and went on and named all of the animals. He called them a name with a PURPOSE. Which means.. that if you’re in a relationship that doesn’t carry a purpose, you probably shouldn’t be in it.
Let’s get to the meat of your “Adam.”
“Vs. 21- And the Lord God caused a DEEP sleep to fall upon Adam and he slept and took one of his ribs & closed up the flesh thereof; vs. 22 And the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made he a woman and brought her unto the man. Vs. 23 And Adam said, “THIS is now bone of my bone & flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman because she was taken out of man—therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother & cleave to his wife.”
Ok—so the ABOVE scripture tells me that EVE did nothing in light of pursing Adam. She didn’t have to SWITCH all hard past him, dress half naked, sleep with him, tell him that “HE was gonna be her hussssband” or anything else. God PREPARED her behind the scenes and when she was FULLY prepared—God presented her perfectly for Adam and guess what—ADAM recognized her!! He wasn’t confused with her & the billy goat or the horse—He KNEW that Eve was his wife. There was no question. So run from the man that is confused about who he wants to be with. You are NOT someone’s option. YOUR Adam will quickly recognize YOU & take action to lock you in because he will SEE your great value and worth. He wouldn’t dare do anything to mess up the relationship because he wouldn’t want to lose you OR see you go to another “Adam.”
So the above tells me that …
  1. Every relationship that you do have—should have purpose, whether male or female.
  2.  You should stop settling for a bunch of randoms that want to date you when convenient. You’re trying to fill VOIDS that can only be filled by CHRIST. So, just stop it.
  3.  If you have to sit and question a guy—he aint the one.
  4.  God is the best matchmaker—HE organizes & prepares OUR life for His glory.
  5.  Your Adam is in a DEEP sleep & that’s why HE hasn’t FOUND you.
  6.  When God wakes him up—you both will be able to recognize each other.
  7.  Calm down
  8.  Ladies, you’re a help meet—You’re supposed to HELP him—why are you trying to help a  wanna-be-rapper with no job, no vision, no future and 5 baby mamas?
  9. You are to help him to accomplish the purpose of God over your life.. not helping to each other to your bodies prior to marriage.
  10. You cannot wake up your Adam—clearly, God put Adam in a deep sleep & woke his tail up.
So now that we see all of that—STOP going around and trying to wake up your Adam! STOP trying to get him to see your body, hips, and thighs and focus on spending time with CHRIST and letting CHRIST develop this crazy inner beautyabout you. And I aint trying to toot my own horn because I WAS a straight train wreck while I was single but one thing I did do—was spend crazy time with God. As you spend this crazy time with Him.. He begins to put this light on you, ananointing. I made spending time with God a PRIORITY every SINGLE day—I would pour out, get on my face, pray often, meditate on scriptures like it was fresh water & I stalked Jesus. MEN were DRAWN to my anointing. Yeah, they probably thought I was cute too—but there’s a ton of “cute” not saved women out there. It was the CHRIST in me that they were drawn TO. When guys would meet me—they would say that they were so drawn to me  & wanted to run off in the wind & get married. Thus, it made it harder to weed them out & stay focused on Christ because I HAD them banging down my door. Now—let me also say this—they weren’t WHAT I knew I was supposed to be with, thus—I never dated them.
You may be in a situation where you feel like no guys call you or try to talk to you. Trust me—this is even better then having fifty million randoms banging down your door. IT is very distracting. In the midst of the randoms.. I just knew that God had the right one for me. Of course, I could have married ANY of them.. but I just KNEW that there was one that I would go & start a ministry with and travel all over this crazy world & share Christ.  God told me my purpose in 2003 after we had a date night together. He told me that I would travel all over this world & preach the gospel and that millions of people will come into the knowledge of WHO He is through me & my husband’s ministry. Now—I had just broke up with my little boyfriend from college so I was thinking—wow! I have a huge standard. Just can’t marry anybody.
I want to encourage you sisters. Satan is after your mindset. He wants you to think that you’ll be like sister so & so & single your whole life. He wants you to think that you’ll never get married. He wants you to think that you’ll be too old to have kids, He wants you to believe his stupid LIES. IF you believe his lies, you’ll be WAY too wrapped up & distracted to do what God called you to do. You’ll serve in church but deep down, your heart will hurt & you’ll grow frustrated. I want to challenge you to have JOY RIGHT NOW. No matter what season you’re in!! Some of you may think that.. it’s “easy” for me to say that because I’m married but myDUE date for marriage was August 14th 2010. YOU have a due date for marriage that has been PRE-ARRANGED by Christ.. and there’s NOTHING you can do right NOW to make that time come any quicker. Being pissed off at God & everyone else who is getting married sure won’t make that season come any sooner. So, dear daughters of Jesus.. rest sis. God loves you. He’s with you. He cares for you. He hasn’t forgotten about you. Your Adam will wake up in DUE time but that just can no longer be the focus of your mindset & cares. If you DRILL in your head that you’re going to trust God and HIS timing & be determined to enjoy life.. YOU will. If you drill in your head .. stupid love songs & stalking your ex boyfriends new life & girlfriend on his facebook page, you’re going to be sad & down. Keep your eyes on your OWN grass & water that grass.. clean it up… make it pretty. Let God develop beautiful gifts & areas into your heart. Pass some tests. Stop being so darn emotional. Surround yourself around positive women. Stop going to the club to finds you a man. STOP having sex with randoms.  Stop complaining about your “time.” Bring something to the table of your one-day marriage besides discontentment your entire single life.
This is For You Men as well, Let God Present to you your “EVE”
God wants ALL of you.
He LOVES you like crazy,
-Heather Lindsey
 
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Posted by on August 8, 2012 in Encouragement

 

SLC Camp “OutCry 2012”

Camp Dates:

Friday September, 21st – Sunday September, 23rd 2012

Price: $100.00

Deposit of $50

Deposit Due By: September 8th, 2012Image

 
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Posted by on August 3, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

There’s More than One Way to Cut A Tomato

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A few weeks before this summer began, my wife, Zerelys, and I had the privilege of speaking to a very select group of young married couples from our church. We met with them on a Wednesday night and after having a delicious dinner together, we felt led by God to simply speak from our hearts and specifically about one event that happened early on in our marriage that marked us.

And today I would like to share that same story with you.

I clearly remember coming back to our second floor apartment after going to the supermarket for some groceries. A short while later when it came time to prepare dinner, I offered myself to help in the kitchen. One thing you might or might not know about me is that my cooking skills are very limited. (and I do mean VERY limited) I can prepare for you a mean cereal or fancy tuna fish with crackers but beyond that, if it were up to me to feed us for the rest of our lives, we would be in trouble. But my amazing wife knowing my limitations said, “You can help me prepare salad.” When I heard that, I told myself, “I can do that, that’s no problem” and began to gather everything I was going to need. After I had rinsed all the vegetables, next I had to cut them so it could all fit and look nice in the bowl. I got through with cutting the lettuce with no problem, but them came the famous tomatoes.

I had just inserted my knife into the first tomato when I noticed out of the corner of my eye that my wife was watching me. And her look wasn’t like a “I’m so in love with this handsome guy” look, it was more like a “you better do it right” kind of look. Half way when am cutting the second tomato, out of nowhere my bride of just three weeks, in a loud and stern voice walks in my direction and asked, “What do you think you are doing?”

Me (kinda startled): “What are you talking about?”

Her: “You’re doing it wrong.”

Me: “What?”

Her: “The tomato. You’re cutting it wrong.”

Me: “For real? You can’t be serious.”

Her: “Here, let me show you how it’s done!”

Me: “No way, I can do it.”

Her: “But you’re doing it wrong!”

Me: “Babe, there’s not just one way to cut a tomato. Just because I might not do things like you would, doesn’t make my way wrong just different.”

And from that day on, the phrase there’s not just one way to cut a tomato, has stuck with us and we have said it to each other often because it reminds us both that our personal way of doing things isn’t the only way of doing things. We are two different people, from two different places, with two different upbringings who are now under one roof for the rest of their lives in this commitment called marriage. And if we learn and practice to be patient and listen to one another, we will undoubtedly avoid many painful arguments and not become part of the divorce statistic.

Now I believe that, the phrase there’s not just one way to cut a tomato, can apply to much more than just marriage relationships, but also in leadership circles, in our work places, when we are with friends and basically everyone we come in contact with. Why? Because what I learned that day and what want you to leave with is: we, 6,973,738,433 people on Earth, are all different and the only way you and I will experience and maintain a life full of amazing relationships is if we keep fresh on our minds that our way isn’t the only way of getting things done.

So next time you find yourself in a situation where you are seeing things get done in a way maybe you’re not accustom to, don’t freak out or get upset, just remind yourself there’s not just one way to cut a tomato.

 
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Posted by on July 30, 2012 in Lessons

 

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Disciplined Living

The 4 Steps to Disciplined Living:

1) WATCH

“Watch your thoughts; they become words.
Watch your words; they become actions.
Watch your actions; they become habits
Watch your habits; they become character.
Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.”

2) YOU CAN’T HURRY IT UP
We live in a society that moves in a mad rush. I’m sure you’ve felt it. There are three cars in front of you at the drive-through and you’re tapping your foot, frustrated that it is going to take you two extra minutes to get a sandwich that would have taken you thirty minutes or more to fix at home. People push their cars ten or twenty miles-an-hour over the speed limit to travel ten miles down the road. It must save them all of what, sixty seconds? Could it be that we have forgotten how to wait?
This “must have it now” attitude affects every aspect of our lives, even our relationships. Love is expected to bop you over the head the first time you see that special someone. Yet, is that really love? Paul describes love in I Corinthians 13:4-7.

3) NO PAIN, NO GAIN

Many people want a good life. They want a nice car, a good home, and a loving spouse. Yet, some people aren’t willing to put in any effort to achieve those goals. They’re like the couch potato with dreams of being an Olympic gymnast. Though it would seem wonderful to have every desire fulfilled, God did not make the world operate in this fashion. We have to work for the things that we want. We even have to work for our basic necessities

1 Corinthians 9:24-27

New International Version (NIV)

The Need for Self-Discipline

24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize. 25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last, but we do it to get a crown that will last forever. 26 Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. 27 No, I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

4) YOU ARE CALLED TO RISE

The Lord calls us to overcome – to pass over the human standard (Matthew 5:20). He knows the competition and the power of the flesh. Yet, he calls us to beat our bodies and to run against our passions (I Corinthians 9:27). With His help, we will win. Saying it is only natural to act like an animal is to deny the existence of God.

Matthew 5:20

New Century Version (NCV)

20 I tell you that if you are no more obedient than the teachers of the law and the Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

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