Poverty to Prosperity

poverty of prosperityThe prosperity message proclaimed throughout America must be put into perspective. It is true that Jesus became poor that we might become rich. The question is what riches did Jesus impart to His people?

In Ephesians chapter one, God tells us that we prosper with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms. We are adopted, accepted, redeemed, forgiven, wise, and sealed with the Holy Spirit.

Clearly, God has prospered every believer with His heavenly treasures to cause us to rejoice in His grace. For this reason, we must boast in our abundant life as we die to our worldly ways. We must not make wealth our idol or earthly possessions our prize.

Instead, let us die to the lust of the eyes and the lust of the flesh and the pride of life. Let us make it our purpose to prosper others with the hope of God’s grace.

Does this mean we live in poverty? For some, it means to die to all worldly possessions to go to the ends of the earth to profess the love of Jesus by surrendering selfish desires to suffer alongside God’s precious people. For others, it means to die of our obsessive consumption of worldly possessions to send out others to proclaim the good news of God’s grace.

Either way, we rejoice that our treasures are not of this world, but of the overwhelming peace, joy, and love we receive when we die to self to live for Christ. As Jesus became poor to give us a prosperous life here and everlasting, we become poor in spirit, completely dependent on Him, to make others rich.

Promise from God:
For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though He was rich, yet for your sakes He became poor, that you through His poverty might become rich (2 Corin. 8:9).

Pray with me: Lord, we praise You for Your mercy and grace. Thank you for leaving the glory and majesty of heaven to become poor that we might become prosperous and rich in You. Thank you for dying to Your desires and sacrificing Your heavenly status to suffer on our behalf taking our sins upon Yourself. Thank you that through Your death and resurrection we have an abundant life here and into eternity. Lord, change our hearts by this truth. May we embrace Your suffering to experience more of You. May we die to ourselves to become poor in spirit, completely desperate for You. Today fill us with Your overwhelming joy and love to boldly profess the poverty we once possessed until be became rich in Your glorious grace. Help us let go of our worldly possessions and selfish desires to experience Your heavenly treasures of peace, joy, and love. Let us express generosity through our time, talents, and treasures by loving Your precious people that they may become prosperous in You, in Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

How has God prospered you to make others rich?

Saying You’re Sorry

saying youre sorryHow often do you say you’re sorry and mean it? For me, sometimes I have resorted to saying I’m sorry to fix the friction in my relationship. I hate conflict. So I confess, there are times that I have apologized to bring harmony back to my home.

The problem with an insincere apology for the sake of tearing down tension, stonewalling, or withdrawal is that it’s a temporary fix. An unrepentant heart will repeat the offense.

The solution is to sit before the Lord and ask Him to search your heart. When He reveals your sin realize that you have broken the heart of your heavenly Father who adores you. Your sin nailed Jesus to the cross regardless of that other person’s offense.

Our sin against God should produce in us a godly sorrow. We should grieve, mourn, and wail our sinful thoughts, selfish motives, doubt, fear, bitterness, and lack of compassion for others. These sins are offensive to God. We break God’s heart when we take our salvation for granted, justify sin, and cause people to stumble.

True confession is taking responsibility for your sin, saying I’m sorry to God and the person you’re in conflict with for the purpose to change. To change behavior requires recognition of a sin committed against God and a desire to never hurt Him again. With conviction comes a godly sorrow that leads to confession and renouncing that thought, motive, or behavior by casting it down by the power of Jesus name, not justifying it.

Instead of false pretenses and peace faking, let us truly repent of our pride to be reconciled with God and those in our sphere of influence. Let us be a people who humble ourselves before God and others to confess our sins to be healed once and for all. Otherwise, our worldly sorrow of saying we’re sorry to temporarily bring unity will lead to long-term death and destruction. With our lying lips we participate in evil. Let us not be hypocrites, but be humble and desperate for God’s righteousness displayed in a repentant heart.

Promise from God: For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death (2 Corin. 7:10).

Pray with me:
Lord, thank you for Your forgiveness when we mourn over our offensive ways. We realize that our sin not only separates us from You, but we hurt Your heart when we turn to the ways of this world as a hypocrite. By taking our salvation for granted we become a bad testimony to those who are watching. Forgive us for not following Your Word, for turning to false idols, for our selfishness, stubbornness, and justification of our sin. Lord, we confess our worldly sorrow of saying sorry, but not truly mourning our sins committed against You. We understand that our unrepentant heart will lead to eternal death and destruction. We need Your power to change our thoughts, motives, and behavior. We grieve our double mindedness and confess our fear and doubt, our pride and self-centeredness, our greed and apathy. Change our hearts, O Lord, to be aware of our wicked ways that we may be a people who please You. Create in us a contrite spirit of godly sorrow to have a pure heart that will save us. Make Your power known as others witness our humble heart, our bold confidence in Christ, and compassion for others that will lead them to repentance. Break our heart for what beaks Yours in Jesus name we pray. All for Your glory and praise. Amen.

When have you said I’m sorry without meaning it?

Faithful Father

faithful fatherWhether you came from a safe and secure family or you were abandoned and abused, you have a heavenly Daddy who loves and adores you.

Often people who I come alongside as a Faith Coach are reluctant to believe they are loved by God. They ask, “If God loves me, why would He allow this horrible thing to happen?”

After expressing empathy, I explain that one of our greatest gifts is freewill and the ability to choose. We are never forced to become a robot controlled by a heavenly Dictator. Instead people are given a choice to follow a Faithful Father or a deceptive Devil. Those who choose to believe the lies of this world and follow the evil desires of their flesh will go down a path of destruction and commit evil deeds toward others.

Our heavenly Daddy waits patiently for us to choose Him. He already chose you over His own Son who willingly left the glory of heaven to pay the price for you to become part of His family. We are chosen, adopted, and given an inheritance of a heavenly home if we choose to believe.

Jesus came to demonstrate the Father’s love as God Himself came in the flesh to pay the penalty for our wicked wayward ways. He cares about you. Every good and perfect gift comes from your Papa in heaven.. He is a Faithful Father who protects, provides, and is always present with you.

God will never abandon or abuse you. Instead, He may gently guide you back to the safety of His loving arms as your heavenly Daddy disciplines. He wants to teach you to trust in His love. He wants to heal your heart and give you the hope of an abundant life with a glorious future. As His child, you are co-heir to the throne through Christ who came to give you eternal rewards when we surrender to His ways.

Promise from God:
“I will be a Father to you, and you shall be My sons and daughters,” says the Lord Almighty (2 Corin. 6:18).

Pray with me:
Heavenly Father, we thank you that You adopted us into Your family to be Your children. It’s amazing to think that as King of kings, Lord of lords, and Almighty God that You love us so much that we are heirs to Your throne. You have chosen us. You have blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms. Help us remember to act like Your sons and daughters, a prince or princess in Your sight. As royalty may we remember our identity in Christ and reflect Your heavenly glory. You own the heavens and the earth and You long to give us the desires of our heart as our heavenly Daddy. As Your children we want to follow, honor, and respect You to demonstrate our love for You. Since You care about us intimately, we take every need before Your throne room of grace. We trust You to meet our needs believing You want to provide, heal, comfort, and reveal yourself to us and those we pray for. Thank you that You want the best for our lives. We surrender our circumstances to You in Jesus name. Amen.

How has God demonstrated His love to you through His protection, provision, and power in a difficult circumstance?

Temple of God

temple of GodPrior to the Messiah coming, the temple was where God’s people went to worship God and to offer a living animal as a blood sacrifice to atone for sin. God’s presence dwelt in the temple and the high Priest was the only one allowed to go beyond the curtain to be near the presence of the Most High God.

That curtain that separated God from His people God tore from top to bottom as Jesus died on the cross. Jesus was the sacrifice that brought us into intimate communion with God. Through Him we dwell in His presence.

When Jesus rose from the dead and ascended to heaven He gave us new life. Through the gift of the Holy Spirit , He came to make us the dwelling place of God for all who accept His sacrifice on their behalf.

Today, remember that you are cleansed of your sin by Jesus sacrifice on the cross when He poured out His blood to atone for your sin. We become a living temple of God willing to pour out our lives to sacrifice our selfish desires to live for Him.

When we lust after other idols of possessions, pleasures, and people we miss out on intimacy with God and His best for our life. Our sin separates us from a Holy God and hinders our prayers, peace, joy, and experiencing His presence. Instead, we dwell in darkness and live with guilt, shame, and anxiety.

What is separating you from experiencing all that God has for you? Dwell in His presence and be His people by seeking after Him alone and confessing your sin to be in right relationship with God and others. It is easier to do life together with like-minded people. Are you in fellowship with other Believers who hunger after God, long to know His Word, worship Him alone, and desire to reflect His love by serving others?

Promise from God:
And what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For you are the temple of the living God. As God has said: “I will dwell in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they shall be My people.” (2 Corin. 6:16).

Pray with Me:
Lord, thank you that You have chosen us to be Your people, to be a temple of the living God. Thank you that when we invite Jesus into our heart that You dwell in us through the Holy Spirit. Help us to remember that we have all power and authority in Christ to walk confidently knowing You are with us and for us. Give us Your strength today to overcome the temptation of seeking after idols of material possessions, indulgence of pleasures and self-gratification, and people pleasing. We confess those sins and ask that You help us develop relationships with those who are seeking after You so we can be around like-minded people. Bring Christians into our path today that we can study Your Word together, pray for one another, and use our spiritual gifts to edify the body of Christ as a family. Help us to stop seeking after the ways of this world to seek after You alone to be set apart to bring others into a relationship with You that they may experience Your overwhelming peace in Jesus name. Amen.

In practical ways how do you demonstrate that Jesus dwells in you?

Today Is The Day

today is the dayToday people are living in constant fear of death and destruction. In fact, the latest earthquakes, shootings, and rumors of wars are signs of the end times. Of coarse, we cannot determine when Jesus will return, but as Christians we know He will be back.

Those who believe and confess that Jesus is Lord and He paid the price of their sin will stand before a Holy God forgiven. We have the hope of heaven when we face our final day. But the truth is that not all will be saved.

Let us not be lazy and selfish today. Give others the hope of salvation. They don’t have to live in fear of suffering. There is healing and confidence that comes from knowing God is with us and for us. Be bold to tell people the faith you have in your heavenly Father.

Promise from God: For He says: “In an acceptable time I have heard you, and in the day of salvation I have helped you.” Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation (2 Corin. 6:2).

Lord, thank you for Your grace and the gift of salvation that we do not take for granted. You have heard the cries of our heart and You have saved us from our sins. You have blessed us by dwelling in us. Today is the day of salvation. People desperately need hope and healing. Let us boldly proclaim Your truth, no matter what the cost. Use us to minister Your love as You permeate our lives in Jesus name. Amen.

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