Rejoice in The Lord Always

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by Dawn Fisher

One thing I love about living in North Carolina is the changing of the seasons.  I love fall and seeing the color that abounds all round us and the crisp cool air that settles in.  I also love spring. Again a season of color as flowers begin to bloom, birds begin to chirp, and the sun brings in warmer air. These are my two favorite seasons.  What about the cold of winter, and the heat of summer?  Not my favorite, yet both are seasons I still find beauty in.  I love a beautiful snow fall and throwing on my boots and favorite jeans.  I love beach trips and family vacations, which are always a part of our summer.  I embrace each season knowing when I am not enjoying a bitter cold day, spring is on its way.

As I am walking a “winter season” in my personal life, I wonder why I cannot embrace it by holding onto God’s promise that spring follows winter?  Instead I find myself not tolerating this season well at all on most days.  I don’t embrace the season, I just beg and plead for God to take me from this season into the next.  On a spiritual note, I only want to live in the spring and summer seasons.  I want the new beginnings of spring and the fire of God in the summer.  Don’t you?

However, I believe God is saying to me, and would say to you too, is don’t miss me. Don’t miss my colors, attributes, and the faces of my character I want to show you in the fall.  Don’t miss me in the coldest darkest times of your life, because this is when my mercies and presence are the closest and the warmth of my embrace will feel like no other.  Don’t’ we find the tenderness of God in this season?  Without the fall and winter seasons of our spiritual life, we would never experience the compassion and love of God.

In fact, did you know many people think some parts of the earth are hotter, because they are nearer to the sun?  This is not true.  It’s also not true that God is closer to us in the hot summer seasons where we feel the fire of God.  God is with us regardless of our season.  He is with us in all our seasons, showing us who He is, teaching us, and preparing us for the next season.  The reality is the earth leans toward the sun…shouldn’t we too lean toward the “son” to feel the warmth of our Savior.  He shines in our lives regardless of the season.

Don’t we too need all the seasons. They all hold beauty if we find God in them.  Today, regardless of what season you are in, I ask you, where is God?  Is he close?  Is He for you?  What part of who He is does He want to show you in this season?  How is He preparing you for the next?  Will you, regardless of where you are, instead of asking God for a new season and complaining, giving up, threatening to quit on God will you ,

“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” – Philippians 4:4

Will you trust God?

“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;”  – Ecclesiastes 3:1

Prayer:  Lord thank you that you are always with us regardless of our season.  Forgive us for missing you, denying you or running from you in the fall or winter of our spiritual journeys.  Help us find the beauty of you there.  Help us to find keep a teachable spirit and to rest in the warmth of your love during those times like never before.  Grow our faith and our trust in you and may we cling to your promise of hope and not wavier.  Oh Lord and for the new life of spring you bring in abundance and the fire of your Spirit that falls in those hot summer seasons of our life, Lord we give you praise.  We choose today Lord to rejoice in you always.  I will say it again:  Rejoice!

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Which Are You Bearing: a Work of Flesh or a Fruit of The Spirit?

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by Kim Howell

We are beginning to see more of the gifts of the Holy Spirit flowing in the Body of Christ. I praise the Lord for this has been on my heart for many years, especially after some hard learned lessons.  I would like to share a teaching with you where the Lord woke me up at 4 am one morning and downloaded to me. May you be blessed and possibly freed from some things that were wrongly spoken over you.

Are we walking in LOVE; what is the motive of your heart?

We HAVE TO and MUST be very sure we have a CLEAR and PURE word from the Father when we claim to be speaking forth His Word.

1 Cor. 14:3 But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort. Rev. 19:10 … for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.

Prophecy and directions from the Holy Spirit are always from a place of LOVE and a desire to see freedom come and grace and mercy work. Even correction is supposed to be done in love, because when we speak forth hard words and accusations we need to remember, who is the accuser of the brethren? The enemy is. (Rev. 12:10 And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.

When we hear from the Holy Spirit it is for a purpose. The Father isn’t showing us something to gossip about, but rather to pray, speak His Word into the situation, and sometimes it’s to keep to yourself and intercede.

You see, when the Lord shows us something of this level it is for us to HIT OUR KNEES IN PRAYER AND INTERCESSION. We have to be careful to not become critical, judgmental, or religious by continually renewing our mind with the Word of God.  By renewing our minds, we have the mind of Christ; therefore, we come forth with a word from the Holy Spirit and not our flesh. (Rom.12:2, I Cor. 2:16,Philippians 4:13)

Another thing we must do when a word is given to us, is to check the word against the Word of God and see if it is inline with scripture, grounded in love, and in truth. (1John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God; because many false prophets are gone out into the world.)

Yes, there are times when a hard word of correction comes, but we must not allow the enemy or our own flesh to be used to bring condemnation to our own brothers and sisters. I have been guilty of using harsh words “to get God’s point across”. I was wrong. When we are obedient and led by the Holy Spirit, the message is anointed, full of His love, and can pierce the hardest heart, all while being spoken out of unconditional love and humility. The Word says in: Galatians 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such a one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.Because the Word clearly states that ONLY the Holy Spirit can bring about conviction. John 16:8 and when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:

I cannot stress the importance of keeping a renewed mind. This way, when we are used to speak forth a word of correction, it is done in love, with no condemnation, only true conviction, which brings about change and repentance in the person receiving.

Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

Spending time in the Throne Room of His Glory and Grace and going to that intimate place with our Lord and Savior, keeps us full of His agape love, which we pour out to all who cross our path. We can become glory carriers. We must check our own heart before we deliver a Word from the Lord to see what our true motive is. Is it to control, manipulate, or bring down?

Or is it to see true freedom, be an encouragement, and love loosed into a brother or sister.

You see the enemy knows the words we speak carry weight and have authority. That’s why the word says there is death and life in the power of the tongue. (Check out these verses for an in-depth look at our word:Rev.12:11, Jn 17:20, Matt. 12:35-37)

When we speak forth Gods word he sends the angels to carry those words to accomplish that which they were sent to do.

Isaiah 55:11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

When we speak what the enemy is whispering in our ears, he knows that gives him a legal right to send his demons to take and carry those words out.

Like I said, even the devil knows what our power and authority is through the name and the blood of Jesus Christ.

When are we,, as the Body of Christ, going to wake up to the revelation of EXACTLY WHO WE ARE AS SONS AND DAUGHTERS OF THE MOST HIGH GOD?

In conclusion, I want to share these following scriptures with you:

Galatians 5:19-26 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, [20] Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, [21] Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.

[22] But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, [23] Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. [24] And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. [25] If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. [26] Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.

Galatians 6:8 For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.

Its time we ask ourselves, which are you bearing: a work of flesh or a fruit of the Spirit?