Who am I?

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By: Savanna Howell

Have you ever thought to yourself “Who am I?” or “Who am I supposed to be?”

But you are not like that, for you are chosen people you are royal priest, a holy nation, Gods very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he has called you into His wonderful light.(1 Peter 2:9)

We have to quit relying on what we THINK God is saying, and put on the mind Christ, so we KNOW what his true perspective is. True perspective  comes out of a relationship with Him, an intimate relationship with Him.

You may not notice, but there is a war over YOUR identity. Imagine what it would be like to wake up and not know who you are.  Imagine there being  no trace of your identity. That is what Satan is trying to do right now. If he can destroy what God intended you to be, he is succeeding and when you believe those lies about yourself it hurts he heart of God. Some of Satan’s tools include the opinions of others, our anger, and the media.

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.( Jeremiah 29:11 NIV)

Our identity and our plans should always line up with His word, not our thoughts.We are ALL Gods people, we ALL have an identity in Christ.

Like Paul, he had his identity in him while he was murdering Christians, but then he experienced God on the road to Damascus (Acts 22:6)

Christ was crucified on the cross over 2,000 years ago; it was finished. It is our responsibility and our choice to receive forgiveness and complete salvation and our authority in Jesus now.

I pray you all are awaken to your true identity and do not let your past mistakes hold you back from knowing your true purpose.

Time to Go

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By:  Tina Coble

I will be honest, the one thing I never wanted God to ask me to do was to go on a mission trip, especially a mission trip where I would be going into a jungle. I mean I don’t even camp! But God has a sense of humor I think because guess what?  He has done just that.   He has called me to go on a mission trip to Columbia, South America. Oh I had a lot of questions for Him:

  • God, what if  you don’t provide the finances?
  • God, what if something happens to my kids or what if I can’t get anyone to care for them while I am gone?
  • God, what if I’ve missed you?  What if this isn’t your will?

What if … what if … what if …!!!

With all the “what ifs” fear rose up and then fear set in. Then the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart and said “Tina, fear does not come from me”.   When fear takes over and threatens to stand in the way of obedience to Christ, Paul reminds us to cry out to our Abba, our Father.

For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!. (Romans 8:15)

When I was able to hear truth about fear, I stopped asking God “what if “ and began to ask God “why he wanted me to go?”  In that moment I  felt God speak to my heart, “If you go, I get to do so much through you? This trip is going to be  key in showing  you what I want you to do with your life.  I have someone that needs to hear about me, from you Tina.”

I knew when I heard the voice of my Abba, my Father, and knew He was counting on me.  He was calling me.  He was going with me.  Someone there needed to hear about Jesus from me.   I knew for sure, without any doubt, I must GO!!!!  Everything in my flesh was fighting, but I have chosen to die to that flesh every day and align myself with the will of God.   I know as I  walk in the power of the Holy Spirit, as I  immerse myself in God’s Word, and as I pray and seek wisdom, I will walk in peace.

So I challenge you today to think about what it is God might be calling you to?  Are you choosing fear over faith?  Are you asking “what if” instead of pursuing God’s heart and will for your life in an area and choosing obedience?  Is it time for you to join me in getting out of your comfort zone?  Fear will ultimately rear its ugly head.  Just expect it.  In fact, it’s a good sign you’re in exactly the right place.  Don’t let fear keep you from experiencing the joy of being in His will.  Ask the Prince of Peace to step in and overwhelm your heart and show you truth.

Selfishness Eventually Brings Humility

 

By: Roslyn Maglione

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When someone invites you to a wedding feast, do not take the place of honor, for a person more distinguished than you may have been invited. If so, the host who invited both of you will come and say to you, ‘Give this man your seat.’ Then, humiliated, you will have to take the least important place. But when you are invited, take the lowest place, so that when your host comes, he will say, ‘Friend, move up to a better place.’ Then you will be honored in the presence of all your fellow guests. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted. ( Luke 14:8-11)

During 2016, some work issues arose where I felt that I deserved more than I was getting. I told myself that as a senior member of my department, I was entitled to certain privileges and special perks over others that had less experience on the job. As I saw others get selected over me for certain positions, being assigned new and better equipment, and getting recognition for their work that I was not; I became sullen and disgruntled. I was in a bad place wishing that my time left at work would hurry to retirement. I was miserable in my job and it showed in my attitude and on my face both at work and it eventually bled over into my home life. I was definitely not easy to deal with at times and I did not have the gratitude in my heart that I should every day I am alive on this earth. I found the more I grumbled and complained, the worse I felt.

Thankfully, I had a kind Christian friend at work that sat me down and told me what she saw and her concern for my well-being. She told me how special I was in my own way and that just because I may not have received certain things I felt I deserved; it did not mean that God was not aware of my accomplishments. She reminded me that our satisfaction in a job well-done has to be intrinsic and that God has a certain path laid out for each of us. Her talk led me to realize my selfishness was holding me back from living a satisfied life. I made a list of all the wonderful things I do get from my job; a sense of pride and respect, knowing I help many people on a daily basis, the use of a car with free gas, wonderful benefits when I retire, and a salary that allows me to have all my needs met. After I realized how much fulfillment I get from my work, I was ashamed of my behavior and began to humble myself in all aspects. What a difference it has made in my overall happiness and satisfaction in life. I encourage you, if you have found yourself in a similar place to do a check of your heart and attitude, maybe even create a list as I did of all you have to be thankful for and in this place you too will find yourself humbled before God and a joy and humility return that was overshadowed by selfishness.

Is There Not A Cause?

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By: Shannon Chambers

I have spent most of my life championing the cause of ‘the least of these’….well ever since I moved past being one myself. I was not involved in church growing up. I attended an occasional VBS but it was mostly for the snacks. The only Bible I ever saw was the big one that rested on top of my grandparent’s coffee table. My Nanny (what I called my grandmother) would read me a story here and there and my favorite was always the one about the Good Samaritan. Later, I would read an MLK speech in social studies where he mentioned the Good Samaritan and talked about Jericho Road being dangerous, even referred to as the ‘Bloody Pass’ in the days of Jesus. In another speech, King again references the story of the Good Samaritan, “On the one hand we are called to play the good Samaritan on life’s roadside; but that will be only an initial act. One day we must come to see that the whole Jericho Road must be transformed so that men and women will not be constantly beaten and robbed as they make their journey on life’s highway. True compassion is more than flinging a coin to a beggar; it is not haphazard and superficial. It comes to see that an edifice which produces beggars needs restructuring.”

His words added context to the parable my grandmother had shared so many times and watered the seed of scripture that had long before taken root in my heart. I decided that “transforming Jericho Road” would be my life’s work. Folks being beaten and robbed as they make their journey on life’s highway is the thing that both makes me furious and breaks my heart. It is the thing that provokes the David-like warrior in me to declare, “Is there not a cause?”

What makes you furious? What breaks your heart?  What cause provokes the warrior in you? It is probably the thing you are called to confront. If you have not discovered it yet, no worries! God is always working through others to sow and water along the way.

Whatever your thing is, fight the good fight. Don’t allow fear to hold you back. Be a warrior. Warriors often take the first and most courageous step when entering battle. There is a “knowing” within them regarding the battle before them that is able to innately sense when the time has come to move. When David stepped forward to kill Goliath, his courage and victory inspired the previously paralyzed Israeli soldiers to enter the fight. His voice and actions awakened the masses and served as a clarion call to others that the time to act was now (or I guess THEN).  You have been called to something! I pray that it is revealed to you clearly and that the warrior in you boldly steps forward to accomplish the impossible!