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“My flesh and my heart fail; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” Psalm 73:26 As we grow weaker physically, and as time continues to make its mark upon our bodies in completing the story of our lives, we all the more declare the strength of the Lord as being our strength. His strength is made perfect in our weakened moments when we have no defense, but also in our weakened state as we grow weak and weary through the years. The flesh sags and loses it resiliency. The heart beats at a slower pace and its rhythm is not the same as in our youth. Yet our heart of hearts or determination is stronger than ever to keep in step with God. He is the strength our resolve and resilience. Time cannot rob us of what He gives. It will outlast our flesh and outpace the distance of all the efforts ever made by us and even others who are running against time. Our portion is forever. When time ceases our portion will still be there. All that He has promised will remain and we will have the where with all to enjoy all…

“Therefore, laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all evil speaking, (2)as newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow thereby.” 1 Peter 2:1-2 Things that have the potential of hindering our spiritual growth are to be laid aside. It is not always clear as to how things that may appear so benign can restrict the flow of fellowship with the Spirit of God. He is gentle and so pure that any of the above mentioned have the potential to disrupt the peacefulness and calm that He alone can provide. Feeding on the earnest milk of the Word is the antidote to the poisonous effect of malice, deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and evil speaking. It will convict us when the thought arises in our minds to participate in practices which will hinder His effect upon our lives. One of the evidences that we are born again is that our spirits will know what we so desperately need. We are then able to grow past those things that plagued our souls before we came to know the Lord. As we lay these things aside, the fruit of the Spirit will grow within us. The very…

“As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.” Psalm 103:12 The dimensions and dynamics of God’s grace are immeasurable.  When we think about the severity of our sins in light of His righteousness, we can then agree with Him that all sins are worthy of death. Only when we give consideration to the depth of the offense will we fully appreciate the grace of God provided and extended towards us. He takes what we deserved and separates it from us. Then as we grow in our understanding of what He requires as a means of cleansing us from the stench of the ruin of sin, He can then separate us from it. Forgiveness of sin is the cleansing from all unrighteousness. It is as if the Lord took a large eraser and erased all that was before. Then we are instructed as to how we are to live in order to remain cleansed from what was once participated. Even in the process of learning, He has made provisions through the precious blood of Jesus to cleanse us of all unrighteousness if we confess our sins. He takes our transgressions, that…

“For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for necessity is laid upon me; yes, woe is me if I do not preach the gospel!”  1 Corinthians 9:16 “I must” is to brave the storms of life in spite of the difficulties required of me to survive. I can only give light consideration to the cost attached to obedience. Obedience is often costly because there are so many options that could lead to paths of least resistance. Yet the call of God to obey rings strong within my heart and ears in spite of my mind fighting against it and telling me that there are other ways go and other things to be done. Some of them appear to be equally important, and at times, seem to outweigh the measure of this assignment because of greater gain and requiring less effort. But God speaks “woe” to the very thought of my disobedience to His command. Necessity is laid on me to speak the truth when the lie or even silence would be of greater benefit. “I must” do what God has called me to do. I must speak what He has given me to speak. Yet…

Catch us the foxes, the little foxes that spoil the vines, for our vines have tender grapes.”  Songs of Solomon 2:15 The tender grapes are the daily benefits provided to us by God. It is the knowledge of God’s love producing within us a confidence that is not easily shaken. When we are confident that we are loved, then we are empowered to love others without pretense. True friendships can be forged to last a lifetime and the expectation of a future hope of eternity burns brightly within our hearts. How delicate the balance is between our faith and our love. We can now love because we by faith can see beyond the shortcoming and limitations of the misguided and the misinformed. We can see good intentions even when bad habits inhibit positive action. We can also see the possibility of change among those whose lives appear to be hopeless and they may be blind to the true remedy of their souls. But when careless and immature foxes enter into a well cultivated vineyard, they have the tendency of destroying the very vines on which the fruit is being developed. One mishap can raise such doubt as to cause one…

To lose heart is to become fainthearted when fear holds its grips upon the soul. It is when discouragement occurs as result of failed hopes and dreams. Things were expected in a certain amount of time; a rescue from a dilemma, but the situation remained the same. Time is beyond our control, but not beyond our management. Each moment must be used as an opportunity to further develop the stature of the soul. Each day, a lesson is learned and applied to our eternal destinies so that even our failures amount to success in God. We are being trained for eternity. God is taking us through a course in life that will increase the measure of our faith in Him alone. The outward man is perishing along with its passions for the external and temporal things. As we grow older we grow wiser in our values. We are now seeking those things which are above where Christ is. All other things are being held loosely in light of their eternal value. The confidence we have in Christ is that life as we have known it to be is not the only chapter in this story. The greatest chapters await us…

“But He is unique, and who can make Him change?  And whatever His soul desires, that He does.”  Job 23:13 God is complete in and of Himself. He is not like us with needs that may cause our focus to shift from one thing to another. Those are the limits placed upon the human experience. We navigate through time not knowing the things that lie ahead of us. But God knows the end before the beginning. He is light and in Him are no shifting shadows. Why would He change His mind for such things that may be a fleeting thought within our minds? Instead of His mind being changed by us, our minds are to be renewed by Him.  True humility is exercised when we are willing to forgo our will what another wills. When we trust Him in areas not completely understood, He will give us the will and desire to please Him. We will experience His goodness and grow in our understanding of dimensions of His love. What a blessing it is to find pleasure in what pleases Him! His uniqueness can then be celebrated rather than loathed. Some may wish to wrestle out of His hands what…

 “How you have advised the one without wisdom, and abundantly revealed your insight!” Job 26:3 (NET) God’s advice to those who are void of wisdom can be translated as those who lack the ability to plan ahead. Those who lack foresight to make plans for the future are advised by God in things only known to Him. Forward thinking is the key to spiritual progress. Our sights must be set on things above as we journey from here to there. Each situation and every message must be weighed on the basis of their spiritual content. Are we growing in grace and the knowledge of God, or becoming content in our current state? The Holy Spirit guides us beyond the level of wisdom known to the world to insights revealed to us from heaven. Only then will we feel the sense of estrangement in an environment that is not our home and seek those things pertaining to life in the Spirit. Sound advice is required in order to have good success. Spiritual things are compared with the spiritual once we have been made aware of God’s Presence and humbly submit to His will as knowing nothing on our own.

“And seeing from afar a fig tree having leaves, He went to see if perhaps He would find something on it. When He came to it, He found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs.” Mark 11:13 Jesus expected figs out of season as He approached a tree bearing leaves. The closer we are to Him, time no longer the measure for seasons of change. His Presence is sufficient to cause flowers to blossom and fruit to be borne. Seasons are a means of measuring natural things. The almanac records planetary alignments and climate changes. The time for planting is different from the time of reaping. Then what grows must mature before it is ripe for harvest. Yet Jesus expected fruit to be produced before harvest time. Since nothing but leaves were there He cursed it so that nothing would ever grow in it again. The lesson was for His followers. There is a moment in time allotted to us by God that must be seized. It not, the heart is hardened and mind is fixed to remain as it was. He says to us, seize the moment while the Word and Spirit combined brings in a…

“And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” Matt 16:19 The keys unlock the mystery of the Kingdom of Heaven. Jesus spoke to the multitudes in parables because it had not been given to them to know the mysteries of His kingdom, but it was given to His disciples. They had submitted to Him and had committed to fully follow Him. Along their journey they were graced by the Holy Spirit to receive the revelation from the Father that He was the Christ, the Son of the living God. This truth unlocked the mystery to which they were to enter in. Experiencing Christ is having access bringing down to earth the blessings contained in heaven. As we grow in our knowledge of Christ, not merely our knowledge of created things, we will discover that all is subject to what we are learning. He has preeminence over all things. They maintain their consistency by and through Him alone. A glimpse of Christ is insufficient for the journey ahead of us. We must maintain our focus exclusively…