Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Offense Will Come

     Hello there! How are you doing today? Oh yeah this is a blog not a conversation. Sorry!
I have some pretty serious things to talk about today, so before we begin let me just say that again I say these things because the One who loves me lover you and is calling you to something deeper than you are in right now. Whether that is a new relationship with Jesus, a worshiper or a pastor of a church. God always wants to go deeper with us, if we will seek Him.  Matthew 6:33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. 
     This post is about offense, so really no offense if I hurt your feelings. ;-)  First of all God never promised us a life without hurt and offense in fact His word says offense will come.
Luke 17:1 Then He said to the disciples, "It is impossible that no offenses should come,"
     Oh yeah, offense is coming, hopefully not from me but it will come. So here is what got my mind rolling with the whole offense things. I was at a prayer meeting at our church and I got a word from God that I shared with the group. It had the word "now" in it. I know that when God was speaking to me about what our church is doing "now" didn't mean that it wasn't doing that same things years ago, just a confirmation that "now" we are currently doing what He has called us to do. Really had nothing to do with past actions of our church one way or another. There are leaders who have attended this church their whole lives, or pretty close to it. (For someone who has moved around as much as I have that is so hard to believe!) We have only been there over a year. After I got home I thought about what God had said and how what I could have said to make sure there was no offense at all. I don't believe there was any but again it could happen. Sometimes I speak about changing our lives using things in our past as our deciding factors, it could be that some would see offense. If I use past relationships or words that are spoken as indicator of our heart condition both past and present, I want it to always come from a place of love, His love, but I am human and sometimes a bit blunt.
     I have had past relationships in my life that I have had to repent from, in fact before my hubby and I got married we had to repent of aspects of our relationship. We didn't understand at the time the full impact of our actions but repentance was what God was calling us to do through our pastor. We did things wrong, we are human and make mistakes, but I know Someone in the restoring business.
     Here is the things, we all have past, something that we are not proud of and somethings that we wish would never be brought back up. EVER. Those things we wish we could hid in the darkness are usually the ones that cause the most offense.  Quite frankly Satan would love it if you would keep those things hidden and be easily offend when people push those buttons, or hurts. It keeps you from the love of God and all the good things He has for you. Offense seems to momentary put a guard around our hearts protecting others from seeing the places we hurt.
Mark 4:22-23 "For there is nothing hidden which will not be revealed, nor has anything been kept secret but that it should come to light. 23 If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear."
     There are moments when as Christians, we are the worst about offense. We walk around with our noes in the air. We know best. Or something. A few years ago we left a church we had been at for 4 1/2 years. It was a time of big change and there were lots of people who were leaving. I walked into the foyer and felt "This place isn't home anymore." drop into my Spirit.  I prayed for 6 months before I  shared with my husband what God told me. I didn't want to leave. I begged God for 6 months, on my knees and with tears, to change His mind. But He didn't, and we finally left. It was hard, we left friends that had become family for the unknown yet again. And even thought it was "only" our church and not our city or state, because of all the other people who had left, there were a lot of hurt friends who didn't even ask why we left, just spoke and felt bad about us, it felt like me move to a new city in a new state. We had to make new friends, put my outspoken self back out there to be judged and possible rejected.  In those months of searching for a new church, which we were blessed is was very short, many of our friends and fellow church members left the same church. I really believe some left out of offense rather than waiting for God to call them out or doing the work that He needed to do there.  The church where God planted us just went through, and continues to go through changes, as we are trying to bring heaven to earth. Again I have seen member leave over offense.  It really breaks my heart because that offense can become a root, and before we know it, that root colors everything we see. Everything. We lose our way and don't know why we don't love church or Jesus the way we did before. If we do finally get pulled out of the oppression that comes with roots of offense it takes time to then repent of all the things said and done during the time of rooted offense.
     Offense is also a heart condition, based on our past hurts. We choose everyday to live in offense. Please guard your heart from offense, of every kind. It is  going to come, could be in the color chosen for the carpet in a church renovations, or a new worship song, or a lie spoken about you by a friend. It could come from closer than that, a spouse. Those we love hurt us the most, right? Offense is going to come. Check you heart and see if there is offense there.  Repent and be free then chose to live as much as you can offense free. Choosing instead to live in Forgiveness. Realizing that people who are walking in flesh will hurt us by their words or actions, or lack of. But our choice needs to be forgiveness.
Luke 12:3 Take heed to yourselves. If your brother sins against you, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. 4 And if he sins against you seven time in a day, and seven times in a day returns to you say 'I repent', you shall forgive him."  
I would challenge you to forgive even if they never come to you and say sorry. Better to live in over forgiveness than offense.  

I challenge you because of the One who loves me also loves you!  Seek first the King!!!


As always scripture taken from

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Heart Conditions and Our Fruit

     Good Afternoon! As I am writing this it is cold and rainy outside, my cup of coffee is almost empty, but there is music playing and my youngest is watching The Little Mermaid. Life is good!
     I have again a few things to share with you today. As always there are so many thoughts going through my head I often don't know where to start. So I am going to jump into it and hope that you can follow my thought patterns. :-)  
     Looking at my heart condition (from my last post about being Enough) always leads me to looking at the fruit that my life produces. And I would have to say in the last few months I am blown away by the goodness of God and what he is doing with my family. I know that I had parts to play in the transformation of our family but God has done some very amazing things in the hearts of my husband, and 4 of my kiddos. Thank you Jesus that you loved us so much you would come down into our messy lives and lift us into your arms!!!! (My 2 oldest kids got baptized last Sunday!)
     Anyway, (sigh, life is good) back to our heart and our fruit. The Bible says in 
   Luke 6:45 45 A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks. Or from  
  Proverbs 4:23 23 Keep your heart with all diligence, For out of it spring the issues of life.  
     If you got a chance to attend the Women's breakfast a few weeks ago I used both of the verse as we looked at the lives of Rachel and Leah, and you heard me say that I LOVE descriptive words. Proverbs 4:23 has the words "springs".  When I think of this word in context of what comes out of our heart I just imagine, or literally sometimes see, joy, peace, happiness, or bitterness, sadnessvenom spring from our hearts and out our mouths.  That would be our fruit. If the words that come out of our mouths are bitter and hurtful, if they are swear words, if they tear down instead of lifting up then that is what is in your heart.  Sorry to be the bearer of bad news. It doesn't matter if you have given your life to Christ. If your words and actions are bad then you are producing bad fruit and your heart is corrupt .Ephesians 5: 4 says It’s not right that dirty stories, foolish talk, or obscene jokes should be mentioned among you either. Instead, give thanks to God. We all have had corrupt hearts.  I did and if I don't continually go back to God and ask Him to search my heart, it would become corrupt very quickly. It is part of our human nature to have corrupt hearts. They only way we know that our hearts are corrupt is if someone comes along and tells us that our lives are bearing bad fruit.  

     God desires you to bear good fruit, for the words of your mouth to be good and holy, uplifting and full of joy. But the only way to do that is to let Him come in and clean up the darkest parts of our heart. We can not, no matter how hard we try cover up our fruit or clean our own heart. You could stop swearing and/or saying mean things, but the fruit will come out in other ways, if you don't go to Jesus and have him clean it up.     A few verses later in it says
   Ephesians 5:8-14  Once you lived in the dark, but now the Lord has filled you with light. Live as children who have light. Light produces everything that is good, that has God’s approval, and that is true. 10 Determine which things please the Lord. 11 Have nothing to do with the useless works that darkness produces. Instead, expose them for what they are. 12 It is shameful to talk about what some people do in secret. 13 Light exposes the true character of everything 14 because light makes everything easy to see. That’s why it says: “Wake up, sleeper!  Rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.”
     If you have given your life to Christ at anytime in your life and you can see some bad fruit in your life, renew that commitment and ask Him to clean your heart. 
   Psalm 139:23 23 Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me, and know my anxieties;  
     He will come in and clean your heart, He wants to be invited in to heal the hurts and turn  the faces of those He loves back to Him. That would be you! He loves you and He wants you to be set apart for Him, having a clean heart and bear good fruit. 
    If you already have a clean heart and renew that daily, ask the Lord who you can help with the truth of their fruit. There is a world full of hurting people looking for someone to love them and help them find the Truth. Continue to set yourself apart for God service. 
     Ephesians 5:15-16  15 So then, be very careful how you live. Don’t live like foolish people but like wise people. 16 Make the most of your opportunities because these are evil days. 

   I challenge you because of the One who loves me also loves you! Seek first the King!

As always the scripture came from