What is Your Captivity?
James 1:5 -“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.”
I was reading this verse and I was led to the reference Scripture, Jeremiah 29:12. I did read more than the one reference Scripture and wanted to share my thoughts.
Jeremiah 29:11-13 – 11) “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12) Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13) And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart. 14) I will be found by you, says the Lord and I will bring you back from your captivity.”
Although the reference is wisdom, I was drawn to the last verse with God stating that He would bring the Israelites back from their captivity. It struck me that although God references the physical captivity of the Israelites here, we today are held captive by many things; the past, the present, and the future. Hence, my title for this post. It makes me think about so many things that keep us captive and not truly worshiping and seeking God. We do not rest in the peace He references above. There are times when we are so consumed with what we want, we are unwilling to accept that God is all-knowing and He knows what is ahead for each and everyone of us. Sometimes what we want will bring evil upon us. His thoughts toward us are of peace, and not evil, to give us a future and a hope.
There is a tendency when we read the Scriptures to expect God to respond in what we want and according to our mindset instead of what He knows is His best for us. When we ask God for wisdom, do we ask according to His thoughts toward us? Do we ask for true wisdom or do we just want what we want? The foundation of truth is that the beginning of wisdom is the fear (reverence and awe) of God.
Something to chew on.
WHO ARE YOU?
Healing and Helping Others to Heal
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God’s Got This
Trusting God can seem very challenging when things are not going as planned. Men have their own plans, which may or may not include God. I have come to understand that however challenging things may be, God desires the best for you; not only in this world but also for eternity. God sees the future, we do not. In our anxiety when things don’t go as planned, we forget to thank Him for His hedge of protection. He protects us from ourselves: the choices that would bring destruction and harm when we trust Him. He comforts us in the pain we are going through when we feel hurt and rejected from not getting what we want. Notice I said “want”, not “need”. God does meet our needs.
We definitely need to remember that God answers every prayer: yes, no, and wait. We also forget that when He says no, there is something better He has for us. Everything is in God’s control, whether we believe it or not.
Today, I would like to leave you with this. God’s got this and you; whatever your “this” is.
It’s been almost three weeks. Been dealing with some health issues. Here I am, though. Ready to encourage and inspire. Pray that all is well with each of you. By well, I mean that you are dealing with whatever challenges you have. “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”. This excerpt from the Serenity Prayer (most popular and to me, straight to the point) speaks to everyone of us as we deal with life. I believe that when we accept what we cannot change_what’s not in our ability to change_the stance puts us in a position of power. We can move on to the things we can. From that point, we are able to walk forward in spite of fear_courage_ and the most important part is the wisdom to know the difference. This comes from God. We need to ask and keep asking for discernment. Each day may bring new challenges. However, God is with us every day. He promised to never leave us nor forsake us. He said in His word to “Call to Me and I will answer you, and tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know and understand and cannot distinguish.” Jeremiah 33:3 (NASB)
Be blessed in the Lord!
Wisdom, Instruction, Understanding
Proverbs 23:23 – “Buy truth, and do not sell it. Get wisdom, and instruction, and understanding.”
Wisdom is defined as: “the quality or state of being wise; knowledge of what is true or right coupled with just judgment as to action; sagacity, discernment, or insight.”
The Word of God says the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.
Education in the Word of God is critical for every believer. Daily presence in the Word of God allows the Holy Spirit to speak to you. Today’s culture promotes education fiercely. Believers should be fiercely motivated to educate themselves in His Word.
Instruction is defined as: education.
Understanding is defined as: intellectual faculties; intelligence; mind.
The Word of God tells us to love the Lord our God with all our soul, strength, heart, and mind. When we understand and accept that God is in control, He truly is as the Creator, it brings about a certain understanding. When we see that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, it brings about a certain understanding. When these understandings are accepted, we receive truth. God’s truth. I believe that education is important. When we have a passion for something, we educate ourselves. I believe that when we educate ourselves in the Word of God, He shines the light on who He is and how much He truly does love us. My encouragement today is to read the Word; and, not just today, but everyday. Let us seek the Lord while He may be found.
Be blessed and have a great week!
During my devotion this morning, I was struck by this passage of Scripture.
Psalm 37:3 – Trust in the Lord and do good; Live in the land and cultivate faithfulness.
Of course, I have read this before. However, if you know God, there are times when you read something. Then, you read it again and again, and yet see something that didn’t strike you before like it does at that moment. “Cultivating faithfulness” was impressed upon my spirit. I looked up the word “cultivate” in the dictionary. Even though I know what it means – nurture, feed, promote growth – I had to see the definition again. The fifth definition given was “to develop or improve by education or training; train; refine”. The seventh definition given was “to devote oneself”.
In perspective of this Scripture, the word choice of cultivating faithfulness is speaking of our spiritual journey. We are responsible for cultivating our faithfulness. We are to devote ourselves to being faithful. Educating ourselves in the Word of God and then applying to our daily lives. While it does seem very simple, it takes time and practice. Being faithful means being aware of what you have chosen to do, and then continue doing it. It means educating or learning something new to do it better. I mentioned in an earlier post this week that some things will always take time. We have the microwave, the computer, etc. and can get things done faster than ever before. However, cultivating takes more time and attention to detail, as well as practice. The first thought that came to me about cultivate is relative to land. When you consider farmers, they must cultivate the land to get the best harvest. Aren’t we looking for the best harvest when it comes to our walk with the Lord? Of course, the Lord gives the increase. There are those in our lives who plant seeds. But, are we cultivating those seeds towards faithfulness?
Do you have daily practices in place to cultivate your faithfulness? This question is for you to answer, to ponder, to consider what your harvest will be. Be blessed and have a great day!
Today, I am up early and enjoying the morning. Learning new information and reinforcing useful information that I already know. I am re-energized this morning. I would like to say that being a person who encourages others, I have to make sure that I encourage myself. I think about the coaching perspective of how to help others and know that you must practice what you preach, as it is commonly said.
Today is my youngest daughter’s birthday. She is 21 years old. She told me this morning she is now a law-abiding citizen..lol. Just the beginning my dear! My encouragement today is to be present. Enjoy the day, your family and your friends. Even if you are alone, enjoy that as well. Enjoy yourself. No worries, no anxiety, no sadness. None of it. Be glad that you are alive and breathing. Be mindful that if you could do something about anything, you would. If not, don’t let the negativity grab hold of you and rob you of your joy.
As you maintain an attitude of gratitude, things open up. Should you need to be creative, it will come. Should you need to be productive, get up and do something. I think about motivation and realize that when I have needed to be motivated about something, getting up and getting started does the job. Willing myself to be motivated is just way too hard. It is much easier to just get up and do it. I believe Nike had the best slogan ever, “Just do it.”
As I move on to the next thing this morning, everyone have a great day! Be blessed and be present in the moment. Enjoy your surroundings and the morning sunshine. Take care and talk to you soon!
Learning something new is not easy. I am currently working on my website and want to add a subdomain for my coaching connection. To say the least, it is a challenge. There is so much information out there, it does seem to be a bit daunting just to grab what you need and not all the extra. However, it will come together. Just thought I would touch base with my readers and let you all know I am still here. Growth does take time. I have accepted that I will do what’s necessary to move forward.
That said, I would like to encourage anyone who is int the process of learning something new. Stay with it. Whether you are replacing old thoughts with new ones, better ones or replacing bad habits with good habits, or learning a new technology process. Consistency is the key to becoming strong in your desired direction. I will say this. The microwave was a great invention and technology is seeming to point us in the same direction of press the timer and it is done. Doesn’t work like that on everything though. And even with the advancement of sciences and technology, some things still take time and always will. I have made peace with my desire to be in the moment, be present, and enjoy things even in information overload. What is the hurry? In our “it has be done yesterday culture”, we have become so impatient.
My aging process has put me in a place of doing what needs to get done and let that be that. No race to move so fast that I don’t know what I did or if I could have done it better. Just my thought process. Be blessed and enjoy the day! This day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it!