Do you want to be delivered from sin or just the consequences?

Deliverance from sin comes only when I want it and I reach that place of true repentance.  No one can wish me to deliverance. It is something that I must be desperate for and God in turn meets me in that desperation and brings freedom. The blood of Jesus is what makes deliverance from sin possible, no matter how severe the case.  A lack of deliverance is not based on God’s inability.  Instead, it is based on my unwillingness to submit to the process and REPENT! At times, I mistake wanting comfort with wanting to be free.  There is a huge difference!  Many will come and say they want to be delivered from making unwise decisions and being spiritually wayward.  When in fact what they are really saying is, I don’t mind the decisions I am making, I don’t mind living in sin but what I really want to be delivered from is the consequences attached to my sinful choices.  Feeling bad and trying to avoid the CONSEQUENCES and not the SIN that warrant the consequences reveals a heart that is not repentant. 2 Corinthians 7:10 reads, “For the kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin and results in salvation. There’s no regret for that kind of sorrow. But worldly sorrow, which lacks repentance, results in spiritual death.I know I really want to be delivered when I begin to feel sorry about THE ACT OF SINNING and not just the CONSEQUENCES attached to my choices.  Take for example a man who is caught stealing and is sentenced to years in prison.  The question he must ask is, do I really feel bad about stealing (the sin) or do I just feel bad about being in prison (the consequence)? Other signs that I want to be delivered is that I stop making excuses and pointing the finger at others.  Instead, I take responsibility for what I have done wrong. I am also willing to be fully transparent about my sins and not pick and choose what I share. These are all signs of humility and God gives grace to the humble but resist the proud (James 4:6).  God’s love, forgiveness and deliverance is available to us. We just have to really want it!

 

Be blessed!

Anika

Stop trying to hide from God

Whenever my children do something wrong, they go into hiding. I have been guilty of having the same response with my heavenly father. When I allow my anger to get the best of me and I snap on those I love and speak hurtful words, I am left feeling ashamed and condemned. My hiding sometimes comes in the form of an avoidance of prayer. However, I am so thankful for the truth of 1 John 1:9, that reminds me that when I come out of hiding and come with a repentant heart, God is willing to forgive and cleanse me.

As I read through Genesis 3, I realize that this hiding game started with my first parents, Adam and Eve. When they ate of the forbidden fruit, they hid from the Lord and attempted to cover their nakedness with fig leaves, an itchy choice (Genesis 3:7-9). Their attempts at covering themselves was futile. But how often do we respond in the same way when we have sinned? We may try to cover ourselves after sinning by performing outward acts such as giving more, or listening to gospel music. These acts do not deal with the sin that is in our hearts and our need to repent. Genesis 3:21 mentions that God covered Adam and Eve with animal skin. In order for them to have the proper covering, an innocent animal was killed and it’s blood was shed. This is a foreshadowing of what Jesus; the spotless lamb of God did for you and I on the cross so that our sins could be forgiven. Hebrews 9:22 reminds us, that without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin.
My question to you is, have you sinned and instead of coming clean, you have gone into hiding? Have you been hiding by lying to make yourself appear in an innocent light? Perhaps you are trying to avoid the people of God. The enemy knows that if he isolates us, he can devour us. Sometimes when we sin we avoid going to church because we do not like the idea of being accountable to anyone. While accountability is not always comfortable, it helps to keep us on the straight and narrow. Hebrews 10:25 reminds us that we are not to forsake coming together with the saints of God. No matter what you have done, if you come out of hiding and come to God with a repentant heart, He will forgive you! The choice is yours.  Make the right one while there is still time.

Be Blessed!

Anika

 

 

WHEN YOU ARE READY TO END THE SHOW BUT DON’T KNOW HOW TO GET OFF THE STAGE

I remember how it felt to be tired.

Tired of performing.

Tired of living beneath my God given purpose.

Tired of being away from where I belonged… in Christ.

But it all just seemed so hard. I knew that serving Jesus was the right choice.  That was not the question.  I just did not know how.  Yes, I understood the need to repent but I just did not know how to really just come, how to end my affair with the devil and surrender my all to Jesus.  It seemed like such a daunting task, such an insurmountable mountain.  Would He really forgive me? Could I really live a saved life?  I was not ignorant to bible stories.  I heard about His love in Sunday school.  I sat in church Sunday after Sunday but I was far away from Him because sometimes your head knows truth that your heart rejects!

Perhaps this is where you are today.  You are tired of being a cast member in the devil’s show, you are ready to surrender but you just don’t know how to get off the devil’s stage.  How do you do this?  It is all about putting one foot in front of the other. Yes you acknowledge that you are a sinner, repent of your sins, acknowledge Jesus as your Lord and your need for Him to be your savior.  Get into the word, and get to know your new savior.  Resist the prideful mindset that you can do saved all by yourself, we need to be accountable to God and to each other.  There is a need for getting together with other believers.  Pray and ask Him to lead you to a bible believing church filled with a leadership that is crazy enough to preach and live ALL OF HIS WORD. And then after that?   Well you pray and ask Him to give you a heart to believe like a child!

Believe what doesn’t make sense, what seems foolish to unbelievers. 1 Corinthians 1:18

Believe that He loves you with an everlasting love.  Jeremiah 31:3

Believe that as far as the east is from the west that is how far He has removed your sins from you. Psalm 103:12-14

Believe that His grace is sufficient and that He meets you in your place of weakness. 2 Corinthians 12:9

Believe that when you are tempted to go back, you don’t have to be overtaken because God will provide a way of escape… believe for His grace to kick in for you to take the place of escape. 1 Corinthians 10:13

Believe that He will give you power to walk by the spirit and not the flesh.  Galatians 5:16-17

How about it?  Are you ready to make the best choice of your life, one with eternal consequences?  Get off the devil’s stage.  A new life awaits you!

 

 

 

 

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GO AND SIN NO MORE

Have you sinned and feel condemned? I want to encourage you to receive the forgiveness that Jesus offers and do not return to sin. If you have a repentant heart there is no need to continue to feel condemned.  Watch the below video to be encouraged!

 

Repentance is the warm up before prayer

 

Most workout enthusiast encourage you to warm up before exercising because it is crucial to an effective workout.  It warms your muscles, increases blood flow to exercising muscles and the heart, which minimizes the risk of injury and increases your energy.  The same is true for prayer.  There are times we want to jump in COLD and our prayers feel like they are hitting the ceiling.  We know we have done wrong and we refuse to acknowledge it, we just want to tell God all we need from Him.   However, I have learned that REPENTACE melts the frost off our hearts causing the blood of Jesus to flow in our situation.  It is arrogant to think that we can just come into the presence of God expecting something without acknowledging that we have done wrong.  God is simply not pleased with arrogance.  He makes it quite clear that He resist the proud but gives grace to the humble (James 4:6).  True Repentance requires true humility.

Sometimes we say sorry because we don’t like the consequences of our actions, but would return to that sinful action in a heartbeat if there were no consequences attached; if we knew we would not be caught.   This is not true repentance.  Repentance is saying God I am sorry and I really mean it.  I regret what I have done and I truly want to change.  I want to turn from my sinful ways because I know it displeases you.  Repentance says I want to turn my back on sin and run forward into the arms of Jesus.  It is more than words, it is a shifting of the heart.  It is an invitation to Jesus to come in and make right all that is wrong.   Yes I prayed that initial prayer when I first came to Christ asking Him to forgive me of my sins, but that was not intended to be my only prayer of repentance.  As I go with Christ, His truth shines the light on the parts of me that need to change.  I have given up on trying to fix me because the list is long.   However when I repent, I am inviting Jesus to shower me with HIS grace to walk in victory. For His strength to turn away from the very thing that displeases Him.  It is an ongoing process, but one that brings great FREEDOM!

Is there something that you know you need to repent of so that your prayers will not be hindered?  Anger, jealousy, a bad attitude?   I encourage you to pour your heart out to Jesus and receive His forgiveness so that you can move forward in your prayers.

If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word has no place in our hearts.  1 John 1:8-10 NLT

 

Dear God Please Undo What I Have Done

She was not sleepy, I just got her her up 30 minutes prior.  She was not hungry she just gobbled down breakfast AND NO she was not wet. I changed her diaper right before she ate.  But there was princess tugging at my leg demanding that I pick her up.  Why?  She is spoiled, very spoiled.  All I could do was whisper in desperation, “Dear Lord please undo what we have done. ” You see Faith has a story and when God answered our prayers, we were overjoyed.  We brought our miracle home and spoiled her… real good.  Tyrone and I were not the only culprits.  Her siblings stayed in her face.  If she cried, there were six other pair of hands ready to rescue her, it was a team effort.  And today we are dealing with the results.

 

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How many other times have I prayed that same prayer when I felt the consequences of MY poor choices.

When I yell at my children in anger and unleash misdirected frustration at them. I see them deflate right before my eyes.  I feel ashamed.

When I speak negatively of others and I later hear my children with the same critical tone.  I am forced to look in the mirror.

When I have had one too many “deserved” treats and I am left  feeling sluggish, cranky and quite round.

All of the above situations leave me asking the Lord to undo what I have done. I have learned that God won’t go back in time and undo my mess.  However, all is not lost. When you have a surrendered heart, He provides the tools to move forward and the wisdom to make choices aligned with His will.  My life testifies to the fact that repentance invites the Lord to masterfully redeem self inflicted pain.

So here we are at the close of 2014 and it is so easy to focus on all the mistakes, all your shortcomings, all the ” I knew better why did I?”  Perhaps you are currently dealing with the painful consequences of choices that you made in 2014 that were out of God’s will. There is no sense of hope for the new year only regret for what’s behind.

If you have not done so already, Jesus is lovingly inviting you to come to Him.  Repentance is liberating and His forgiveness is the sweetest medicine I have tasted.  While others may condemn and remind you of your mistakes, it’s not so with my  Jesus…this is my testimony.  So with all the New Years resolution, won’t you put a yes to Jesus at the top of the list and watch Him redeem in 2015!

But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. 1 John 1:9 NLT

This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun! 2 Corinthians 5:17 NLT