Category Archives for Jesus Talk

Hearing God’s Voice Is Not Always Convenient

December 11, 2020

I am often reminded that hearing God’s voice is not always convenient. I got up at 3:00 yesterday morning and it was not by choice. Initially, it was irritating because I was tired. As I laid in bed longing to go back to sleep, I began to quietly lift my heart to God and guess what? He spoke to me. I did not hear His audible voice, but in the stillness of the early morning, I had such a deep impression on my heart, and I knew it was God speaking. He provided clarity for a specific question I had been asking for many months in prayer. I was happy for the answer, but my flesh thought it came at an inconvenient time. Can you relate? Many of us pray to hear the voice of God, but we want to hear it on our terms and when we think it most appropriate. It doesn’t work like that. Hearing the voice of God is not always going to be convenient. His voice may come to convict when we are finding pleasure in doing wrong. His voice of conviction in that moment may be viewed as inconvenient because many would prefer to enjoy their sin and not have to think about how wrong it is. We may be in a season of comfort and established routine, and God’s voice comes to give us directives that disrupt our comfort. And again, our flesh may resist the inconvenience. Pray to hear God’s voice but be sure to not ignore it when it comes at a time that we deem disruptive to our flow of life. That approach can prove detrimental. It is prideful to expect God to submit to our schedule and convenience. We as the created beings should rejoice in knowing that God wants to speak to us. We must conclude that while hearing God’s voice may not always be convenient, when He speaks we should be thankful and respond in obedience, no matter how inconvenient it may seem.

Be Blessed

Anika

John 10:27 (NIV) My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me.

Hearing God’s Voice Is Not Always Convenient – YouTube

Do You Serve God From A Place Of Duty Or Delight?

December 4, 2020

Do you serve God from a place of duty or delight? When we base it on duty, we “serve” Him because we know it is what we should do, not because it is what we want to do. We pursue all the things they say a good Christian should such as read our bible, pray and do good deeds for the poor. However, we do not do these things to develop intimacy with the Father and to please Him. We do them so we can cross them off our daily checklist. When we serve Him from a place of duty, it is hard for us to receive His mercy and grace and give the same to others. We base our salvation on works and when we mess up, we sink into deep condemnation and put more merit and what we can do to keep ourselves saved. We cling tight to legalism because it feels safe and measurable. We are rigid, not much evidence of joy. We obsess about our reputation and presenting a good image of ourselves to others because we are more concerned with drawing people to ourselves instead of drawing them to Him. We base our devotion to God on an unhealthy fear instead of love. But what sweetness comes when we serve Him from a place of delight! We are keenly aware of our need for Him. We swim in the river of grace and mercy that abounds, not looking to abuse it but embracing it to pursue holiness. A holiness we know we could never achieve in our own strength. We are not ashamed to declare our love for Him with boisterous praise and surrendered lives. Our adoration for Him freely flows without the need to follow a script or a designated time.  There are no boundaries to our worship. We know He has an open-door policy for us to come boldly before the throne, and we make good of it. Instead of running away when we mess up, we run to Him, quick to confess, repent and bask in His forgiveness because we understand He loves us with an everlasting love. Our time of devotion refreshes instead of leaving us dry and weighed down. We are so aware of His presence because when we delight in Him, we are always looking for Him, so we see Him in ways that others may miss. His whispers drown out the loudest voices. We will be vulnerable and share our weakness and share how God has delivered and is delivering us. We share not intending to bring attention to ourselves but to bring attention to Him so that other broken people are moved to delight in Him and find the same freedom we are experiencing. So I ask again, do you serve God from a place of duty or delight?

Psalm 16:11 NIV

You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

Made To Be Productive

December 2, 2020

God made us to be productive. Idleness is not becoming for a believer. Being idle opens the door for the enemy; our thoughts wonder, and our guards are let down.  Idleness leads to us being self-centered, it hinders our ability to serve others, and can rob us of our joy. Not that we should not rest, rest is in order, but we often confuse rest with being idle. There is a significant contrast between the two. Rest is sweeter when preceded by a hard day of work. We rest so it can refuel us after working. However, we are idle because we refuse to work and would prefer to be lazy. Proverbs 21:25 issues a warning to those who are lazy, it says, “despite their desires, the lazy will come to ruin, for their hands refuse to work.”  God made us with purpose, and He intends for us to daily pursue that purpose. We must get instructions from the Lord for what our day should look like. Just like idleness is not synonymous with rest, the same is true with business and productivity. We can be busy doing a lot of things, but if it is not what God instructs us to do, then we have not been productive. Our productivity is determined by our obedience to God. It should not be determined by how many items we have checked off OUR to do list. I pray we will resist the temptation to be idle and instead pursue being productive according to God’s standards.

Be Blessed

Anika

Made To Be Productive. – YouTube

 

When God Shows You Yourself

God recently showed me myself as I was typing an email to a friend expressing my frustration with my children. I told her we have chore charts and expectations are clearly communicated, yet some of them seem to forget these instructions. In my frustration I had become a full-blown nag, reminding them in not very pleasant ways that they were not doing what I required of them.  I have told them on more than one occasion, “I just don’t understand why you can’t consistently do what I require of you?” As I was typing this venting email to my friend, I felt a familiar nudge. It was the Father taking me to school once again. At the moment, I felt Him saying that I also have those tendencies. I know what His expectations are, they are there for me in the word and He is constantly reminding me, but sometimes I choose not to do what He expects of me. I may leave jobs unfinished because I allow myself to become idle and prioritize incorrectly. I may respond in anger with those I love because I chose to walk by the flesh and not the spirit. Sigh. I closed my eyes and prayed. I asked the Father to forgive me.  I asked Him to help both the children and me to follow the instructions we know we should. This was yet another reminder of my need to give and receive grace. Yes, I will hold my children accountable for not doing what they should, just as the Father holds me accountable for my disobedience. However, in the process I will aim to extend grace and seek redemption. Psalm 86:15 proves to be true, “But you, O Lord, are a God of compassion and mercy, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love and faithfulness.” It is humbling when God shows you yourself, but I am so grateful for His patience with me and I pray to extend that same patience to others.

Be Blessed

Anika

When God Shows You Yourself. Receiving & Giving Grace – YouTube

Where Is Your Heart And Mind?

November 17, 2020

t is easy to forget that this is not home, this is not the end of the story. Colossians 3:1-2 reminds me I am to set my heart and mind on things above, not on earthly things. How do I apply what appears to be such a lofty verse? I live here on earth and have to face the actual struggles that come along with this reality. Setting my heart and mind on things above is a daily decision. It does not mean I ignore the realities here on earth, but my heart and attention are more tuned in to the things above, consequently affecting how I respond to what happens here on earth. If I set my heart and mind on things above, that means I am not moved by what I see. I do not allow what I see to dictate my actions and emotions. Instead, I filter everything here on earth through heaven’s reality and what God has said about it. Setting my heart and mind on things above keeps me in a place of peace. Setting my heart and mind on things above means I occupy my mind with God’s Kingdom and not culture. I look for ways to be a light, even when the dark is overwhelming. I don’t dim my light to fit in with the dark. With my mind set on things above, I remember God has given me a task to shine on and all for His glory! Setting my heart and mind on things above demand I break up with comfort and embrace the cross. This means I speak with grace what heaven says about controversial topics and not shy away from truth because of the inevitable persecution that will come. Setting my heart and mind on things above means I pursue God’s purpose, not my own, while keeping a steady gaze on the greater city that is awaiting me. Take inventory of your recent actions and thoughts and they will reveal where you have set your heart and mind, whether it is on things above or worldly things.

Blessings

Anika

Side With Heaven About Your Sin

November 12, 2020

I was on a roll yesterday displaying how highly I thought of myself. At the moment it felt good, and it satisfied my flesh. I wanted to have the upper hand; I wanted to appear as if I had it all together and had all the answers. But shortly after, conviction set it.  God revealed that it was pride that motivated my words and actions. Praise God for His conviction, it reminds me I am His. Truly, He disciplines those He loves. As God showed me myself, it grieved me and I repented… AGAIN! I told Him I wanted to side with heaven concerning the sin of pride. I don’t want to keep it as a treasure. I want to have heaven’s perspective about pride and have a great disdain for it. I don’t want to justify my pride; I want to confess it before the only one that can deliver me from it. It is a process but one that I intend to yield to because I know that God’s word is true, He does “resist the proud but give grace to the humble” (James 4:6). And oh, how I desperately need grace! How about you? Perhaps your area of struggle is not the same as mine, but are you willing to side with heaven concerning your sin? Have you taken on heaven’s perspective or are you busy petting and justifying your sins? God’s grace is there to bring deliverance, but we must acknowledge our sin and see it the same way He does. Let us embrace walking in humility and side with heaven’s perspective of sin and watch God work in our hearts!