When I Can’t Find My Way

If you are expecting a trouble-free life, I have news for you: That is not going to happen. Jesus said, “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world,” (John 16:33NLT).

We can take comfort in knowing Jesus is with us until the end, and He has not left us alone. However, we need to trust Him in all things, and that means we will have to push self aside, look to Him, and fully depend and rely on Him. Take heart…Be strong and courageous because our Savior has overcome the World. So put your faith and hope in Him. In all you do and say, trust in Him. Submit and commit yourself to Him, and He will make your paths straight.

PRAYER: When I can’t find my way, “I lift up my eyes to the hills. Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, Maker of the Heavens and Earth.”

Heavenly Father, You are my Helper and have not left me comfortless. Thank You for always being here for me and for Your Holy Spirit who guides me into all truth. I know that I can look to you and know You have already gone before me and made a way for me. Lord, be with me as I am putting my hope and trust in You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Linda A. Knowles

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Writer’s Block

Yup! Crumpled paper everywhere! I love writing but the flow is somewhat blocked… And I’m sure that, somewhere in this brain of mine, there are several poems that could be pushed out, but right now I can’t seem to put one metaphor together that makes sense. 

JUST PRAISE HIM

From the Quiet Place…

God wants to live among His people.  He wants to protect them.  That has always been His desire since the beginning of time.  He desires to commune and have that fellowship with His children.  However, His people have rejected Him as their Lord and their God.  Those who have claimed God as their own have defiled their own bodies and have exchanged the Most High God for other gods, the creation created by God Himself and the things created by man.

GNBThe Church has exchanged what is holy for what is evil and exchanged the truth of God for lies.  Rather than seeking the God Who Provides her with all her needs, she seeks after that which is temporal such as power, prestige, wealth, popularity, and the like.

God is not welcomed in most places of worship, and His Word has been dissected and chopped up to the point it is unrecognizable.  The Word has been made to suit the lifestyles of the people instead of the people seeing themselves in light of the Word of God, repenting, turning from their evil ways, and humbling themselves before God.

God desires a relationship with His people, but they have kicked Him out of their lives and their hearts.  They have kicked God out of their homes and places of worship.

ROMANSThe consequences of their sin are falling on their own heads, and they are blaming God for their suffering.  Their choices have them on the broad road to destruction.  They are headed to Hell.  Their consciences are seared and their hearts calloused.

The anger of God is set against all sinful and wicked people who suppress the truth by their wickedness.  They know the truth about God because He has made it obvious to them.  The creation clearly shows the invisible qualities of God and so they have no excuse for not knowing God.

HEBREWSEverything is exposed before the eyes of God.  He sees all and yet His children don’t believe He sees all they do and hears all they say.  They are clever at doing wrong, but they are stupid when it comes to doing what is right.  They have chosen death instead of life.  They have chosen to be cursed rather than blessed.

To all those who have believed Him and accepted Him, to them, He gave the right to become children of God.  Those who do His will and walk uprightly before Him, they belong to Him.

“Who may ascend into the hill of the LORD?  Or who may stand in His holy place?  He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who has not lifted up his soul to an idol, nor has sworn deceitfully.  He shall receive blessing from the LORD, and righteousness from the God of his salvation.  This is Jacob, the generation of those who seek Him, who see Your face.”

 

Exalting Him…

psalm 3



“…I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise will always be on my lips. My soul will boast in the LORD; let the oppressed hear and rejoice. Magnify the LORD with me; let us exalt His name together” -Psalm 34:1-3BSB



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You, O GOD, are the Lord of all Creation.

You are worthy of all glory, of all honor, and of all praise.

You are my Redeemer, my Deliverer, and Friend.

You are my God, and there is no one else like You.

You alone are the Rock Upon Which I Can Stand.

You are the Sure Foundation,

and You are my Savior.

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May Your name, O GOD, be magnified in all the Earth.

May Your children proclaim Your goodness

and testify of Your enduring faithfulness.

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LORD, I can look to no other,

for You are the One Who Set Me free

through Your redemptive blood

that You shed at Calvary.

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Thank You for giving me life

that I might live for You,

to commune with You,

to worship You.

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May I bring glory to You for You are great

and greatly to be praised.

I exalt You, O LORD, for You are

the King of kings and the Lord of lords.

Above You, there is no other.

You are the Alpha and the Omega,

the Beginning and the End

the First and the Last.

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You are my Strong Refuge,

my Strength,

my Hope,

my Joy.

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My spirit rejoices in You,

GOD MY SAVIOR,

and my soul delights in You Who Calls Me By Name,

The One who is my Portion forever,

The Faithful and True GOD.

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I praise You, O LORD,

for You are the Shield around me,

and You are my glory;

You are the Lifter of my Head.

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Let me always sing of Your lovingkindness,

of Your compassion, mercy, and truth.

To God be all the glory!

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In Jesus’ Name,

Amen.

You Rescue Me

psalm 113



YOU RESCUE ME

Written By Linda A. Knowles



I will praise You in the morning,

And I will praise You in the night,

even when it seems there is no hope in sight;

For You, O God, are my Deliverer,

And You are my Strength;

And You, O Lord, are the One Who Rescues Me

from the hands of my enemies.



I will praise the Lord at all times.  I will constantly speak his praises.  I will boast only in the Lord; let all who are helpless take heart.  Come, let us tell of the Lord’s greatness; let us exalt his name together.  I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears.  Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy; no shadow of shame will darken their faces.  In my desperation, I prayed, and the Lord listened; he saved me from all my troubles.  For the angel of the Lord is a guard; he surrounds and defends all who fear him.” –(Psalm 34:1-7NLT)


 

Our Cornerstone



ephesians



“‘The stone that the builders rejected has now become the cornerstone.’ ‘Everyone who stumbles over that stone will be broken to pieces, and it will crush anyone it falls on.'” -Luke 20:17-18 (NLT)



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These words are comforting for those who are in Christ.  Jesus is the Chief Cornerstone, Our Sure Foundation as we can see in Ephesians 2:20 (NLT), “And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus himself.”  Those in Christ will inherit eternal life while those who reject Christ are already judged and the wrath of God remains on them as told to us in John 3:36(NKJV), which states, “He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” Those who reject Christ will not be able to stand when judgment falls on them, and they will be crushed under the weight of it.
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When you have Jesus, you have all that you need.  The world could fall in around you and as long as you have Jesus, you have all you need. He is your All-In-All.  Let me say this again:  WHEN YOU HAVE JESUS, YOU HAVE ALL YOU NEED.

“In that day he will be your sure foundation, providing a rich store of salvation, wisdom, and knowledge. The fear of the Lord will be your treasure.”
-Isaiah 33:6 (NLT)

As you walk along the Narrow Road, you may find yourself struggling, but keep your eyes on Jesus.  Continue to let Jesus be your Guide.  Let the Lord instruct you.  He is your Sure Foundation, and when you allow your life to be built upon Him, you will NOT be disappointed.  Whatever is holding you back, give it over to Jesus. In Matthew 11:28-30(NLT), Jesus tells you, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”



PRAYER Heavenly Father, thank You for allowing me the privilege to be able to come before You.  You are the Good Shepherd, and I thank You for being my Guide and my Instructor.  You are my Rock, the Chief Cornerstone, my Sure Foundation.  Lord, these days are evil and are becoming worse and worse.  Give me discernment to know right from wrong.  Fill me with the wisdom that comes from You alone.  Teach me the Fear of the Lord and how to revere You.  Lord God, this world has nothing for me.  Nothing compares to You for You are glorious and majestic, worthy of all praise and honor.  You are the One I long for. Help me to always see Your Word is Truth.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.



Linda A. Knowles


“Therefore thus says the Lord GOD, ‘Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone, A costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed. He who believes in it will not be disturbed.'” -Isaiah 28:16

He Knows The Hopes of the Helpless

nahum_1.7_nlt_border_wallpaper


“LORD, you know the hopes of the helpless. Surely you will hear their cries and comfort them.” -Psalm 10:17 (NLT)



The LORD is with you, and He sees you when it feels like everything is surrounding you or even when it feels like everything is caving in on you.  The LORD your GOD knows those who are your enemies are arrogant and proud, and even though it seems all is well with them, they are not well.  The wicked will perish.  Though trouble surrounds you, the LORD is delivering you out of your troubles.  The LORD is the GOD of all comfort, preparing a feast before you in the presence of your enemies.
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We can take comfort in the presence of GOD.  Our GOD is the One we can run into because He is our Strong Tower, and when we run into Him, we are safe.  He is the Cleft of the Rock who shelters us in the time of storm.
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REFLECTION: “The LORD is good, a strong refuge when trouble comes. He is close to those who trust in him,” (Nahum1:7 NLT). In this passage of Scripture Nineveh had slipped back to their old ways and was now worse than ever before.  Nineveh had reason to be terrified because Nineveh was contending with GOD.  The words in this context of this passage may be disconcerting to the unbeliever, but to those of us who believe, it is great comfort.  Because we trust in GOD, living for Him, though we may find ourselves in a situation where we feel helpless, remember GOD is sovereign.  He is still on His throne, and He upholds you with His righteous right hand.  We are not left without hope no matter what the situation, no matter what circumstances we find ourselves in.  The LORD is our Helper, our Strong Refuge, and our GOD is so very good.

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Keep trusting in GOD.  Keep pressing into GOD through prayer.  Keep on in steadfastness and walking in obedience. Through your GOD, you shall do valiantly. You are victorious.  You are the Child of the Most High GOD, and you are a conqueror. Your GOD does NOT fail.
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PRAYER Heavenly Father, You are the GOD who never fails.  You are the GOD of Victory.  Thank You for teaching me about Your protection and Your faithfulness.  Thank You for making me victorious.  Thank You for being My Father.  You, O GOD, are my Helper, and LORD, remind me You are my Refuge and my Strong Tower and that I need not fear because You have empowered me to persevere through my trials and to triumph over my enemies.  Continue Your work in me, and make me a light for You in this dark world; and may I be a living testimony to proclaim Your faithfulness and Your goodness to those around me.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.


Linda A. Knowles



“But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

1 Corinthians 15:57 (ESV)

Your Words Are Sweet

Psalm 119vs124



“I am your servant; deal with me in unfailing love,

and teach me your decrees.”

Psalm 119:124 (NLT)



YOUR WORDS ARE SWEET

By Linda A. Knowles

 

Like Mary, O God, let me sit at Your feet

to devour the Words that You speak

For Your Words are like honey on my lips

And Your decrees ever sweet.

Deal with Your servant gently, O Lord,

and teach me Your ways;

That I may listen to all Your commands

to take heed of and obey.

 

Give Rightful Place To GOD

Psalm 139vs23-24



Idols cannot give us life.  GOD, however, is the Creator;  He is the Giver of Life.  “…yet my people have exchanged their glorious GOD for worthless idols,”  (Jeremiah 2:11).   An idol is anything or anyone that takes away GOD’s rightful place in our lives.  To exchange GOD for temporal things is foolishness.  Why would we exchange GOD who is the glory and the lifter of our heads (Psalm 3:3) for something else that is incapable of giving us life, for something which fades or withers away, something which eventually breaks (1 John 2:17).  Why exchange GOD who is eternal for other things which are not lasting?



“You must not have any other god but me.  You must not make for yourself an idol of any kind or an image of anything in the heavens or on the earth or in the sea.  You must not bow down to them or worship them, for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God who will not tolerate your affection for any other gods.  I lay the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected–even children in the third and fourth generations of those who reject me.  But I lavish unfailing love for a thousand generations on those who love me and obey my commands.”  -Exodus 20:3-6

Since we are commanded not to have any other gods but the Almighty GOD then we must take hold of GOD, and cling tightly to His truth for He is our Sustainer (Psalm 54:4) and He is not a man that He should lie (Numbers 23:19).  When we love GOD, with our whole heart and soul and mind, we won’t want to hurt or displease GOD.  We demonstrate our love for GOD by giving GOD His rightful place in our lives and obeying all He has commanded us to do.  First place in our lives is not for anyone or anything else.

GOD alone is sovereign, worthy of all glory, honor, and praise for Who He Is.  He is worthy because He is GOD and has demonstrated His love and mercy to us by bestowing His love and His blessings lavishly upon His children.  GOD is to be our First Love.  Nothing can give us lasting joy except for GOD, and there is nothing that can replace GOD in our lives.  We can try to replace GOD in our lives, but that would be breaking GOD’s commands which would displease GOD and cause us nothing but heartache.



“So that I may take hold of the hearts of the people of Israel.  For because of their idols, they are all estranged from ME.” -Ezekiel 14:5


“So humble yourselves before God.  Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.  Come close to God, and God will come close to you.  Wash your hands, you sinner;  purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided between GOD and the world.  Let there be tears for what you have done.  let there be sorrow and deep grief.  Let there be sadness instead of laughter, and gloom instead of joy.  Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up in honor.” -James 4:7-10



Let’s not pull away from GOD, but let’s be faithful to our GOD and not dessert Him for things which are fleeting.  Instead, let’s worship Him in spirit and in truth, giving Him our very best because He gave us His very best, loving Him because He first loved us.  GOD is worthy of us following Him wholeheartedly.  We should never give Him our leftovers, but give Him all the honor due Him because He is GOD. 



PRAYER Heavenly Father, You are Sovereign.  There is no other who compares with You for You are glorious and majestic in all Your ways.  Forgive me for the times I have put other things before You.  I never want to displease You.  Help me to always remember that You alone are GOD and You want the best for me.  Thank You for allowing me the privilege to be able to draw close to You.  Thank You for being mindful of me and for lavishly loving me.   Thank You for forgiving me.  Because I love You, I will do as You command and walk in Your ways.  Guide me into all truth.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.



Linda A. Knowles

 

 

So HE Became Their Enemy

DON'T GRIEVE HOLY SPIRIT
The children of GOD had rebelled against Him.  But then again, what else was new with the children of GOD?  Time and time again, GOD gave them an open invitation holding out His arms to embrace them, and what did they do? They chose over and over again to deliberately do what they knew offended GOD.  They grieved His Holy Spirit which resulted in GOD becoming their enemy and fighting against them as Isaiah 63:10 shows us.
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The LORD gave His people chance after chance to repent and turn from their wicked ways, to be restored, to have a change of mind.  Yet, they disregarded GOD, defying Him, and continued in their sins.  GOD was more than gracious, “All day long I opened my arms to a rebellious people…” and how did they respond to the GOD who kept His arms open to them, the verse continues saying this, “But they follow their own evil paths and their own crooked schemes.”
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Today, most, who call themselves children of GOD, are no different.  A large number go to a place of worship, go through the motions, putting on a great show of “holiness” and pretense, lying and making themselves out to be what they are not.  The masquerade they put on looks great when in reality they are nothing but whitewashed tombs filled with dead men’s bones.  Satan doesn’t have to slip into the churches when he just has to walk through the front doors of the church because GOD is being kicked out of the churches by the “Shepherds” who no longer care for their flock and are clueless about the state of their flock.  “What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs–beautiful on the outside but filled on the inside with dead people’s bones and all sorts of impurity,” (Matthew 23:27).
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Political correctness has flooded the church buildings.  Holiness and GOD’s ways are not popular, and not many will preach against sin.  The problem with that is when sin is not addressed and dealt with, the issues of holiness and righteousness cannot be addressed.  GOD is not, has not, and will NEVER be politically correct.
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Unless the children of GOD humble themselves in the presence of the ALMIGHTY GOD and repent of their evil behavior and attitudes, make no mistake, Folks, “For the time has come for judgment, and it must begin with God’s household. And if judgment begins with us, what terrible fate awaits those who have never obeyed God’s Good News,” (1 Peter 4:17).
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“Don’t be misled–you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant.  Those who live only to satisfy their own sinful nature will harvest decay and death from that sinful nature. But those who live to please the Spirit will harvest everlasting life from the Spirit.” -Galatians 6:7-8
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“You will say then, ‘Branches were broken off so that I could be grafted in.’ That is correct: They were broken off because of unbelief, but you stand by faith. Do not be arrogant, but be afraid.  For if God did not spare the natural branches, He will not spare you either.”  -Romans 11:19-21
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Are you truly GOD’s child, or are you His child only when it is convenient for you?  Is GOD truly your King, or do you treat Him like an emergency number to call only when an emergency strikes?  Do you follow GOD’s will and His laws shown in the pages of the Bible, or are you walking in rebellion doing things your way instead of doing things GOD’s way?
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Repent, because while you have breath, there is time to repent. Don’t wait until it is too late.  You only have a chance now while you are still breathing.
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“Seek the Lord while he may be found; call on him while he is near.  Let the wicked forsake their ways and the unrighteous their thoughts.  Let them turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on them, and to our God, for he will freely pardon.  ‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,’ declares the Lord.”
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PRAYER:  Heavenly Father, You, O GOD, are in Heaven, and here I am on Earth, and I am made by Your hands.  I have sinned greatly against You and You alone.  Create in me a clean heart, and renew a right spirit within in.  Wash me clean as only You can.  Let me draw close to You once again.  Forgive me for my pretense and hypocrisy and for not living as I should before You.  Forgive me for defying Your holy and written laws.  Forgive me for being prideful before You, disobeying  You, and for violating Your commandments.  This day, I am making a choice before You that I will choose life, to follow You and Your ways.  Fill me with Your Holy Spirit, and cast me not away from Your presence.  Thank You for Your grace and Your mercy, and thank You for forgiving me.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Linda A. Knowles


That Is The God We Serve


“For in him we live, and move, and have our being…”

Acts 17:28


AWESOME GOD

 

In Christ, we are never alone because GOD is with us.  Our LORD and our GOD tells us we can come to Him anytime, that eloquent words are not needed to come to Him.  He welcomes us to come to Him and talk with Him anytime, that we are not bothering Him, “Come to me all you who are weary and heavy laden,” and to “Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness” because in Him, we have all that we need.  He tells us to trust Him.  We cannot do this life on our own.  For certain, we cannot keep ourselves alive because He is the One who gives us every breath we take, and “In Him we live and move and have our being.”

 

This life and everything in it is fleeting.  There is only ONE thing that is certain and sure.  ONE that is eternal as everything else is frail and temporal.  That ONE is Jesus Christ, the only Sure Foundation.  While there are mere mortals who try to rise up and take claim to be messiah, there is ONLY one Messiah.  His name is Jesus Christ.

He is the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End, the Sure Foundation, the True and Faithful Witness.  He is the Lamb Slain Before the Foundation of the World.  He is the Alpha and the Omega, the Bright Morning Star; He is the Source of Life, the Root of Jesse, the Offspring of David, and the One Who Sits at the Right Hand of the Father.  He is the King of kings and the Lord of lords.  He is the Eternal One, the Fourth Man in the Furnace, The Son of the Living GOD, The Firstborn of All Creation, and He is the Living GOD.  Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.  He is the Anointed One, The Messiah, The Ancient of Days, The Savior, and The Soon Coming Lion of Judah.

He is truly the All In All who defines His own children.  His children are not defined by any man.  His children are accepted into the beloved, bought with His precious shed blood, and they belong to Him.  And if He be for them, who can be against them?  Absolutely no one.  Our LORD and SAVIOR is Omnipotent, Omniscient, and Omnipresent.  He is the Everlasting GOD, Emmanuel, and He is The Wonderful Counselor.  He is altogether lovely, the Sweet Rose of Sharon, the Lily of the Valley, and His love is better than the finest wine.  THAT’S THE GOD WE SERVE. 

He is the Prince of Peace that breaks down walls of hostility, The Cornerstone, The Lamb of GOD, and He is the Light of the World.  He is indescribable, and He is The Discerner of the Hearts of Man.  He is Wisdom, Insight, and Understanding.  There is none like Him, and there never will be.  He is Hope, and He is Healing.  He is the Good Shepherd, the Image of the Invisible GOD, and He is awesome, worthy of all glory, honor, and praise.  He is glorious and majestic, perfect in all His ways.  Our GOD: The Manna From Heaven and the Living Waters.  THAT’S THE GOD WE SERVE.

 

PRAYER:  LORD of Glory, You are awesome in might and in power.  You, O GOD, deserve all honor and praise because of who You are.  You are merciful, and You are the Giver of Life.  You hold the waters of the earth in Your hands and Your voice is as of the voice of many waters.  Thank You for Your unfailing love and Your compassion that fails not.  Sovereign GOD and King, to You may I always lift my voice and sing and glory in Your presence. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

 

Linda A. Knowles

 

 

 

Sweet Song, Sweet Melody

BIBLE 8


MY SWEET SONG, MY SWEET MELODY

Written By Linda A. Knowles

 


 

My Sweet Song,

My Sweet Melody,

My God to whom I sing.

Abba,

Sweet Melody,

You are my song-

Through every day,

Through every night.

You are the sweetest song I know,

My Sweet Melody;

And I will glory in who You are,

And sing praises to Your name.

 

Tempting Someone Is Not Good

LUKE 12VS2

“And he said to his disciples, ‘Temptations to sin are sure to come, BUT WOE TO THE ONE THROUGH WHOM THEY COME!’ It would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were cast into the sea than that he should cause one of these little ones to sin.'” -Luke 17:1-2 (ESV) 

 

Do NOT be foolish to tempt someone to do what he/she knows is evil in the eyes of GOD, and do NOT be foolish to tempt someone to do what you know is evil in the eyes of GOD. Just like someone does not escape the consequences of their choice to give into temptation and sin, you won’t escape the consequences of tempting him/her and causing him/her to stumble or fall.

God looks to the intents and motives of your heart, and He will not be mocked.

 

“Live as free people, but don’t hide behind your freedom when you do evil. Instead, use your freedom to serve God.” -1 Peter 2:16 (GW)

The Problem With Masks & Costumes

MASK 3Every Halloween, it’s a mad dash to get out of the house as fast as possible by exactly 4:30 p.m. to avoid Trick or Treaters.  I am one who absolutely loathes Halloween as does my husband.  We don’t celebrate Halloween, and the idea of passing out candy every two minutes for four and a half hours doesn’t sound appealing at all… EVER.

The first year we were at our current residence, we were leaving the house, and I caught a glimpse of a parent with his child in his arms.  Something about seeing a child dressed as a vampire was highly disturbing, and the fake blood on the fangs just made it worse until I saw a newborn dressed as an ax murderer and found myself shuddering.

Figuratively speaking, people wear masks and costumes all the time.  The masks conceal what the person’s face actually looks like versus how the person shows him/herself to others.  For instance, when someone is wearing a mask/costume, he can portray himself as if he is an angel.   When in actuality, he lacks compassion, has the intrusive nature of a cockroach, and has the character of a shark and alligator combined.  If someone is shy, she may not be shy when wearing a mask.  She can feel free to be outgoing and speak her mind because no one knows it’s her, allowing her not to fear rejection, and being able to share her thoughts and ideas without anyone trying to stop her from talking, and there’s no one to stop her from meeting other people who are wearing masks and costumes just like her.

WOLF 2HOWEVER, THE PROBLEM WITH MASKS AND COSTUMES is eventually they have to be taken off.  When masks and costumes are stripped off, be careful because you may find the person was a wolf for the entire time you knew them.  At that point, you have to decide what you will do.  You will either stick around and be devoured by the wolf until there is nothing left of you except a skeleton, or you will run and get away from the ravenous wolf who is staring at you like you are dinner with its fangs exposed and ready to pounce on you.

If you choose the second option, you, at least, have a chance of survival.

 

Linda A. Knowles

 

 

 

When There Are Those Who Never Believed You Could Be Successful

MARCUS AURELIUS

No need for revenge.

Let your enemies fall apart at the seams

while you succeed,

and leave vengeance to God alone.



“For the battle is the Lord‘s…”

1 Samuel 17:47 (ESV)



“‘…for the battle is not yours but God’s.'”

2 Chronicle 20:15 (ESV)



 

Living As Children of Light

The world we live in today has lost its moral compass, but we are not to be like the world.  We are to shine brightly for God, to be a light in this dark world, and we must be careful not bring shame to the name of Jesus whose name we bear.  Let us always remember we belong to the Lord, and therefore, we are NOT be conformed to the ways and customs of this world.  In other words, we are NOT to let the world influence us;  we are to be led by the Holy Spirit, putting on the full armor of God, to have the attitude of Christ.

 

Let us be the children of God shining as bright beacons of light.

 

You are not in Christ to continue being what you were before Christ. You cannot claim to have a relationship with Christ while still living as you were before Christ. If you are doing so, you are living in darkness and you’re not being truthful as it states in 1 John 1:5-6, “This is the message we heard from Christ and are reporting to you: God is light, and there isn’t any darkness in him. If we say, ‘We have a relationship with God’ and yet live in the dark, we’re lying. We aren’t being truthful.”

 

MEDITATION:   “Instead, let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God—truly righteous and holy,” (Ephesians 4:23-24 GW).  There is something drastically wrong with the church when you can no longer tell the difference between the world and the church.  You are to be like Christ.  Christ did not follow the vain imaginations of men and He did not subscribe to the world’s philosophy.  He came and began preaching “Repent for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.”  Repentance and confession are still part of the believer’s life today.  Repentance is turning away from your wickedness and having a complete change of mind.  Christ said, “Blessed are those who are poor in spirit.”  In other words, you are blessed because you realize your need for Him and to have Him as your Lord and Savior.  In Christ, you are a new creation, and therefore, you have thrown off the sinful nature and have taken on the new nature, putting on the mind of Christ and following after His teachings and applying them to your life.  You understand being in Christ means you are no longer your own.  You belong to Christ first, and secondly, you are a part of the body of believers.  Therefore, you must conduct yourself according to the new nature Christ has given you.

 

PRAYER:  Heavenly Father, thank You for not leaving me without power.  Thank You for equipping me to live a life that is pleasing before Your sight.  My desire is to seek Your approval in all that I do, to live as You would have me to live.  Let me be a beacon of light shining brightly for You so I may bring glory to Your name.  Father, be the One Who Lights My Way in this dark world.  Teach me Your ways and Your laws that I might meditate on them through the day and through the night.  Fill me with Your Spirit in order for me to produce the fruits spoken of in Your Word.  I ask for You to go before me wherever I go, and I ask that You be with me throughout my day.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

 

Linda A. Knowles

Does God Still Speak?

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Yes, God does still speak to His children today.

As children of the Most High God, we do not take on the beliefs of those in the world whether they are the ordinary unbelievers you come across every day or secular actors, athletes, singers, and the like  who believe that if you talk much about God they consider you to be a good Christian but then consider you to be crazy if you say God speaks to you.   The vain imagination of man and the world’s philosophy is contrary to the nature and character of God and is in direct opposition to what the Word of God says.

Our God is THE personal God.  He is so personal that you are fearfully and wonderfully made complex (Psalm 139:14).  There is nowhere you can go that you can flee from His presence (Psalm 139:7-10).  God knit you together in your mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13).  You CANNOT get more personal than that.  He wants to talk to you (Isaiah 1:18, James 4:8, Hebrews 4:12), and He wants you to talk to Him (Jeremiah 33:3, John 10:27-28, 1 John 1:3).  Having a relationship with God involves communication with Him, and you can talk with God anytime even if you are shopping, cooking, cleaning house, doing yardwork, tending to your children, and taking care of other responsibilities or anything you are doing in your leisure time (Joshua 1:9; Psalm 16:8, 145:18).  You’re not limited in when you can talk to your Heavenly Father or in how often you can speak with your Heavenly Father.

“GOD DOESN’T SPEAK TO ME LIKE HE DOES TO YOU; WHY DOESN’T GOD SPEAK TO ME LIKE HE DOES TO YOU…”

Do you want to hear God’s voice?  If yes, what are you doing to nurture your relationship with God in order to hear His voice?   Are you being quiet enough to listen to Him?  In other words, are you going into your prayer closet where it is just you and God alone, in place of solitude, where He can speak to you without you being distracted?  Are you willing for God to interrupt you at anytime no matter what you are doing so He can talk to you?  If you have a relationship with God, you should be daily spending time in the Word, developing discernment about what is right and what is wrong, and hearing Him speak to you through His Word.  If you have a relationship with God, then you should be spending time in prayer, seeking His Kingdom and His righteousness.  If you have a relationship with God, you should know the Word is clear when it states that “God is not a man, so he does not lie. He is not human, so he does not change his mind. Has he ever spoken and failed to act? Has he ever promised and not carried it through?”  (Numbers 23:19 NLT)   Since God does NOT change, the phrase “God doesn’t speak” is incorrect, and, therefore, does NOT line up with the Unchanging God the Bible speaks of. God uses various ways to speak to His children.

It is important to note this: Do NOT complain God doesn’t talk to you (1) if you are not opening your Bible to study or read it, (2) if you are practicing a life of sin that is drowning out His voice, (3) if you are not paying attention to Him because you’re too “busy” to give Him your attention, (4) if you are complacent, non-committed, indifferent, or stagnant when it comes to God and the things that concern God such as His Will and His Ways, or (5) if you have cut yourself off from Him by actually choosing to be disobedient, disloyal, and have chosen your ways and your will rather than God’s.

“SO GOD SPOKE TO YOU AUDIBLY?”

Usually when someone says, “God told me” or “God spoke to me,” the automatic assumption and conclusion on the part of the listener is that the person heard God speak audibly.  However, the Bible is filled with metaphoric language, which is “the changing of form or nature of a person or thing into something different by natural or supernatural means,” and anthropomorphic language, which is “ascribing human attributes to God.” For instance, in the New Testament, we are told “God is spirit,” (John 4:24) yet at the same time, we speak of being in the hands of God (Deuteronomy 7:8, Isaiah 49:16) and talk about God holding the waters of the earth in His hand (Isaiah 40:12), and we see, in Genesis 1:1, God spoke things into existence such as the heavens and the earth, and in Genesis 3:8, we see Adam and Eve heard God walking in the garden in the cool of the day (Genesis 3:8).

BAR OF MEASURE FOR THE BELIEVER

Within the pages of the Bible, we see the standard of morality and the standard of ethics are set forth by God, and therefore, any preaching or teaching is measured by the Word of God. If a teaching or preaching does not line up with the Word of God, then it must be thrown out.   With that being said, since the Bible is the Authoritative Word of God for those who are believers, it should be no surprise to believers when their fellow brothers and sisters use phrasing often used within the pages of the Bible which they cherish to give them instructions for how to live a life pleasing to God.  God speaks to us through both the Old and the New Testaments.  If you believe in the New Testament, you must also believe in the Old Testament.  The apostles and disciples did not have the New Testament you hold in your hand today.  They got their teaching from the Law and the Prophets as well as those who were in the very presence of Christ and walking with Him during Christ’s time on earth as well as through the disciples who went forth into all the world to make disciples of all nations preaching the Good News of Jesus Christ and the testimonies of those who were witnesses and were saved through the hearing of the message of the cross.

“HOW DOES GOD SPEAK?”   GOD SPEAKS IN VARIOUS WAYS.

  • GOD SPEAKS through the Scripture either by multiple verses or even just a single verse:  “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.” (2 Timothy 3:16 NLT)  “For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.”  (Hebrew 4:12 NLT)
  • GOD SPEAKS in Gentle Whisper/Small Still Voice. “And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper.” (1 Kings 19:12 KJV)  “While you were doing these wicked things, says the LORD, I spoke to you about it repeatedly, but you would not listen. I called out to you, but you refused to answer.” (Jeremiah 7:13 NLT)
  • GOD SPEAKS in Your Personal Quiet Time With Him.  Jesus spent time in prayer, before God, and spoke with God regularly in a place of solitude.  “But Jesus often withdrew to the wilderness for prayer.”  (Luke 5:16 NLT) “In those days, Jesus went out to the mountain to pray, and He spent the night in prayer to God.” (Luke 6:12 BSB)  And if Jesus spent time in solitude with God, how much more should we to hear what God has to say?
  • GOD SPEAKS Revealing His Thoughts To Mankind.  “For the LORD is the one who shaped the mountains, stirs up the winds, and reveals his thoughts to mankind. He turns the light of dawn into darkness and treads on the heights of the earth. The LORD God of Heaven’s Armies is his name!” (Amos 4:13 NLT)  “‘Her husband Joseph was an honorable man and did not want to disgrace her publicly. So he decided to break the marriage agreement with her secretly.  Joseph had this in mind when an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. The angel said to him, “Joseph, descendant of David, don’t be afraid to take Mary as your wife. She is pregnant by the Holy Spirit.  She will give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus [He Saves], because he will save his people from their sins.'” (Matthew 1:19-21 GW)
  • GOD SPEAKS by Natural/Supernatural Means.  God used a donkey, a burning bush, a bright light, and has used all of creation.  “Then the LORD gave the donkey the ability to speak. ‘What have I done to you that deserves your beating me three times?’ it asked Balaam.” (Numbers 22:28 NLT)  “When the Lord saw Moses coming to take a closer look, God called to him from the middle of the bush, ‘Moses! Moses!'” (Exodus 3:4 NLT)  “Now as he went on his way, he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven shone around him.” (Acts 9:3 ESV)  “For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them.  For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” (Romans 1:19-20 ESV)
  • GOD SPEAKS by The Word Of HIS Testimony. “The law of the LORD is perfect, restoring the soul;  The testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple.” (Psalm 19:7 NASB)
  • GOD SPEAKS in Dreams & Visions.  Examples:  Peter, Paul, Ananias. “It will come about after this that I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind; And your sons and daughters will prophesy,  Your old men will dream dreams, Your young men will see visions.” (Joel 2:28 NASB)  “He saw the sky open, and something like a large sheet was let down by its four corners.” (Acts 10:11 NLT) “That night Paul had a vision: A man from Macedonia in northern Greece was standing there, pleading with him, ‘Come over to Macedonia and help us!'” (Acts 16:9 NLT) “In Damascus there was a disciple named Ananias.  The Lord spoke to him in a vision, ‘Ananias!’  ‘Here I am, Lord,’ he answered.” (Acts 9:10 BSB) “About the ninth hour of the day he saw clearly in a vision an angel of God come in and say to him, ‘Cornelius.'” (Acts 10:3 ESV)
  • GOD SPEAKS through People.  “For it is not you who speak, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.” (Matthew 10:20 ESV)
  • GOD SPEAKS through His Son Jesus Christ. “but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world.” (Hebrew 1:2 ESV)  “Jesus went throughout Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing every disease and sickness among the people.” (Matthew 4:23 HCSB)
  • GOD SPEAKS through the Prophets.  “He has sent us a mighty Savior from the royal line of his servant David, just as he promised through his holy prophets long ago.  Now we will be saved from our enemies and from all who hate us.” (Luke 1:69-71 NLT)  “I want you to remember what the holy prophets said long ago and what our Lord and Savior commanded through your apostles.” (2 Peter 3:2 NLT) “Are not these the words which the LORD proclaimed by the former prophets, when Jerusalem was inhabited and prosperous along with its cities around it, and the Negev and the foothills were inhabited?” (Zechariah 7:7 NASB)
  • GOD SPEAKS through His Holy Spirit. “And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Advocate to be with you forever — the Spirit of truth. The world cannot receive Him, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him. But you do know Him, for He abides with you and will be in you.” (John 14:16-18 BSB) “Then He remembered the days of the past, the days of Moses and his people.  Where is He who brought them out of the sea with the shepherds of His flock?  Where is He who put His Holy Spirit among the flock?” (Isaiah 63:11 HCSB) “For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.” (Romans 8:14 NASB)  “If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.” (Galatians 5:25 NASB) “Then the Spirit said to Philip, ‘Go up and join this chariot.'” (Acts 8:29 NASB) “which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual thoughts with spiritual words.” (1 Corinthians 2:13 NASB)  “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.” (John 16:13 ESV)
  • GOD SPEAKS through Godly counsel.  “The godly offer good counsel; they teach right from wrong.” (Psalm 37:30 NLT)  “Listen to advice and accept instruction, that you may gain wisdom in the future.  Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand. (Proverbs 19:20-21 ESV)
  • GOD SPEAKS through Circumstances.  “Daniel said to the king, “Your Majesty, may you live forever!  My God sent his angel and shut the lions’ mouths so that they couldn’t hurt me. He did this because he considered me innocent. Your Majesty, I haven’t committed any crime.” The king was overjoyed and had Daniel taken out of the den. When Daniel was taken out of the den, people saw that he was completely unharmed because he trusted his God.” (Daniel 6:21-23 GW)

 

Linda A. Knowles

Never Take His Sacrifice Frivolously

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Jesus is the Savior, and if we truly love Him, we will obey Him.  He is our LORD and our GOD.   We are never to treat His sacrifice frivolously as Christ is the only means of salvation provided for us, and never take His mercy and grace for granted.  He came here to earth as GOD in the flesh and dwelt among us.  He is able to empathize with our weakness for He was tempted in every way yet He was perfect.  His power is made perfect in weakness, and His grace is more than sufficient, and He is with you always, and HE is your strength.

“Then Jesus told her, ‘I Am the Messiah!'” (John 4:26 NLT)

“If ye love me, keep my commandments.” (John 14:15 KJV)

“Thomas answered him, ‘My Lord and my God!'” (John 20:28 ESV)

“Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are their ancestors, and Christ himself was an Israelite as far as his human nature is concerned. And he is God, the one who rules over everything and is worthy of eternal praise! Amen.” (Romans 9:5 NLT)

“Then he said, ‘I tell you the truth, you will all see heaven open and the angels of God going up and down on the Son of Man, the one who is the stairway between heaven and earth.'” (John 1:51 NLT)

“What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?” (Romans 6:1-2 ESV)

“The one practicing sin is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. For this reason the Son of God was revealed, so that He might destroy the works of the devil.” (1 John 3:8 BLB)

“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14 KJV)

“This High Priest of ours understands our weaknesses, for he faced all of the same testings we do, yet he did not sin.  So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God. There we will receive his mercy, and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.” (Hebrews 4:15-16 NLT)

“And He has said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.’ Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.” (2 Corinthians 12:9 NASB)

“Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” (Matthew 28:20 KJV)

“The LORD is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation; this is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him.” (Exodus 15:2 ESV)

“He safeguards the steps of his faithful ones, but wicked people are silenced in darkness because humans cannot succeed by their own strength.” (1 Samuel 2:9 GW)

Let God Fight Your Battles For You

LION 1That’s right:  Let GOD fight your battles for you.  Our GOD is THE GOD of JUSTICE, and it is difficult to let go of whatever is going on around us that we’re facing.  However, letting go and letting GOD do what HE has to do is something we won’t regret.  I learned many years ago, never to repay evil with evil because the WORD OF GOD states, “And if you call on him as Father who judges impartially according to each one’s deeds, conduct yourselves with fear throughout the time of your exile,” (1 Peter 1:17 ESV).  We conduct ourselves as GOD would have us to conduct ourselves.  GOD has set the standards of morality and ethics.  GOD has set the standard of holiness, and therefore, we need to conduct ourselves knowing GOD sees all we do and hears all we say.  Eventually, we will have to give an account to HIM for every idle word spoken (Matthew 12:36) and everything we have done (2 Corinthians 5:10).  “And he said, ‘Listen, all Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem and King Jehoshaphat: Thus says the Lord to you, Do not be afraid and do not be dismayed at this great horde, for the battle is not yours but God’s.'” (2 Chronicles 20:15 ESV)

We simply need to take our position and stand our ground, fix our eyes on GOD, giving HIM glory and honor and obeying whatever command HE gives us.

DO NOT DEBATE your enemies and DO NOT ENGAGE your enemies.  The WORD OF GOD states clearly, “Not defending yourselves, dearly beloved; but rather give place unto the wrath of God, for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord,” (Jubilee Bible 2000).  The wicked will perish, and GOD scoffs at the wicked (Proverbs 1:26);  and “However, the one who receives instruction in the word must share in all good things with his instructor.  Do not be deceived:  God cannot be mocked.  Whatever a man sows, he will reap in return. The one who sows to please his flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; but the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life,” (Galatians 6:6-8 BSB)

ALWAYS REMEMBER:  THE LORD is your SHIELD and your DEFENSE, and He is the GOD WHO UPHOLDS YOU.  It is better to be a friend of GOD than to be HIS enemy (James 4:4), and GOD always takes care of HIS own children (Psalm 16:5).

“The LORD is my strength and my shield, In Him hath my heart trusted, And I am helped; Therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth, And with my song will I praise Him,” (Psalm 28:7 JPS Tanakh 1917).  “I will say of the LORD, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust,” (Psalm 91:2 KJV).

Much Love To You All,

L.A. Knowles

Living Life Out Loud & Not Behind A Mask

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I have found it better to live life out loud because I have found when you conceal everything about yourself rather than letting others get to know you, you will never allow yourself to be held accountable.  Accountability and taking responsibility are part of life.  Concealing your struggles and pretending you’re a picture-perfect person will never allow you to heal.  When wounds are exposed, those wounds can be cleansed and then can heal… and in this life, I have quickly learned one thing:  There are only very few I will allow myself to be accountable to and allow myself to receive Godly counsel from.  I don’t just let anyone speak into my life.

MASK 1*Remember thisIf you decide to wear a mask, you will only be able to wear it so long before (1) your mask begins to fall off, (2) before your mask shows who you are little by little slowly slipping off(3) before your mask completely falls off, or (4) before someone strips the mask off your face for you.  Free yourself up, and take off the mask.  At least if you take off the mask, you won’t have to worry about someone stripping it off for you.  When you strip the mask yourself, it’s on your terms, not on someone else’s terms.  Be genuine because it’s okay for you to be yourself.  The right people will come along who will accept you just as you are, flaws and all…

 

Much Love To You All,

L.A. Knowles

Temptation

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I wish people would stop putting themselves in temptation’s path.  It’s bad enough that temptation will find you, but why make it easy for the temptation to try to take hold by stepping in front of it?  It is one thing if the temptation comes to you, but to willingly throw yourself in its path is just foolish;  that would be like stepping into oncoming traffic expecting not to get run over.  Why give yourself the opportunity to find out whether or not you can handle it?  Why give yourself the opportunity to fail?

Let me just make one thing very, very clear:  BEING TEMPTED IS NOT A SIN.  The sin is when you take temptation’s bait and then commit the sinful act.

“…BUT I’M STRONG I CAN HANDLE IT”

When I have heard people make this statement, “…But I’m strong.  I can handle it,” I cringe EVERY single time.  For me, personally, I know that if I come to the point of saying “I can handle it” that’s when I know I cannot handle it and usually means to slow down, get a grip, and know the only reason I’m able to take anything on IS BECAUSE OF GOD’S MERCY AND GRACE.  I’m reminded pride comes before destruction and haughtiness before the fall.  For any of us to think we are standing strong is when we need to be careful, and to think we cannot fall is faulty thinking.

What are you entertaining?   The Scripture says in Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”  That means, Folks, we can bring our thoughts under control.  We do not have to entertain sinful thoughts.  If sin actually showed itself to us in its actual appearance, rather than dressing itself up deliciously tantalizing, we would run clear in the other direction.

I can only speak for myself so I will.  Back in the middle of March of 2017, God had spoken to me about certain shows that were absolutely off limits and that He no longer wanted me to watch.  In keeping with honesty, my response to God was not one of enthusiasm, and it sort of went like, “Okay, God.”  The shows weren’t helpful nor were they beneficial, and most definitely, the shows would not help me at all in my spiritual growth, so television is never on during the day except at night to watch a family show.  I was confronted by God who gave me a command, and I chose obedience.  HOWEVER, I NOTICED WHEN I TOOK THE FIRST STEP OF OBEDIENCE, God removed any desire I had for those shows I previously watched.

It is amazing how God will fill you with the strength you need to carry out whatever command He has given you.  He knows when you are ready, and He knows exactly how to get your attention.  He deals with you on the level you are at.  Just as God dealt with me, He can deal with you.  He can reach you right where you are at your point of need.

In 2 Corinthians 10:4-5, it states, We are human, but we don’t wage war as humans do.  We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments.  We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ.”

Do you struggle with temptation or a particular sin?  Then you need to ask yourself what you’re entertaining.  Whatever it is you are putting into your mind will affect you if not soon then later.

Do you want to draw closer to God?  Any show you watch that is not pleasing to God is definitely not going to be beneficial to your spiritual growth;  if anything, whatever you are taking through your ears and eyes,  may stop you from progressing in God and eventually finding yourself off to the wayside and/or separated from Him.  Your thoughts will not align with God’s thoughts unless you are spending time in the Word of God.

It is of great importance to read the Bible in order to have a storehouse of Scripture in your mind to combat carnal thoughts.  The Psalmist declared, “I have hidden your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you.”  For each carnal thought you have that opposes God and His Word, there is a biblical truth to combat each one.

Have you been rejecting the prompting of the Holy Spirit?  Do NOT say God has not spoken to you nor complain that He is silent when you haven’t opened your Bible to study or read it and if you are resisting the prompting and conviction of the Holy Spirit, and in Romans 8:12-14, it clearly states, Therefore, dear brothers and sisters, you have no obligation to do what your sinful nature urges you to do.  For if you live by its dictates, you will die. But if through the power of the Spirit you put to death the deeds of your sinful nature, you will live.  For all who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God.

Will you choose to obey God and be led by the Holy Spirit, or will you live by your sinful nature and its dictates?

Choose you this day whom will you serve.

Much Love To You All,

L.A. Knowles

2018 BRING IT ON

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And Wow, Yeah, 2017 has been an incredibly awesome year in experiencing the preservation and deliverance of God in my own life, and I can’t wait to see what God has in store for 2018.

With the New Year around the corner, it was time for me to seek out verses as a reminder of what I should always seek God for, a command to always keep at the forefront of my mind, and one that gives me a focal point for praise and worship.  

Here are my theme verses for 2018-


MY LIFE VERSE THEME FOR 2018: 


“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fulness of joy;  at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”

Psalm 16:11

 


MY PRAYER LIFE THEME FOR 2018:


“This is what the LORD says:  ‘Stop at the crossroads and look around. Ask for the old, godly way, and walk in it. Travel its path, and you will find rest for your souls…'”

Jeremiah 6:16

 


MY LIFE OF PRAISE AND WORSHIP THEME FOR 2018


“I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart;

I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.

I will be glad and exult in you;
I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.

 

When my enemies turn back,
they stumble and perish before your presence.

For you have maintained my just cause;
you have sat on the throne, giving righteous judgment.

 

You have rebuked the nations; you have made the wicked perish;
you have blotted out their name forever and ever.

The enemy came to an end in everlasting ruins;
their cities you rooted out;
the very memory of them has perished.

 

But the Lord sits enthroned forever;
he has established his throne for justice,
and he judges the world with righteousness;
he judges the peoples with uprightness.

 

The Lord is a stronghold for the oppressed,
a stronghold in times of trouble.

And those who know your name put their trust in you,
for you, O Lord, have not forsaken those who seek you.

 

Sing praises to the Lord, who sits enthroned in Zion!

Tell among the peoples his deeds!

For he who avenges blood is mindful of them;
he does not forget the cry of the afflicted.

 

Be gracious to me, O Lord!

See my affliction from those who hate me,
O you who lift me up from the gates of death,
that I may recount all your praises,
that in the gates of the daughter of Zion
I may rejoice in your salvation.

 

The nations have sunk in the pit that they made;
in the net that they hid, their own foot has been caught.

The Lord has made himself known; he has executed judgment;
the wicked are snared in the work of their own hands.

Selah

 

The wicked shall return to Sheol,
all the nations that forget God.

 

For the needy shall not always be forgotten,
and the hope of the poor shall not perish forever.

 

Arise, O Lord! Let not man prevail;
let the nations be judged before you!

Put them in fear, O Lord!

Let the nations know that they are but men!”

PSALM 9:1-20

May 2018 be a wonderful year for all my neighbors around the globe, and may all of you be abundantly blessed in the new year to come!

 

Much Love To You All,

L.A. Knowles

Thank You For Never Letting Me Go

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There is no better place that I have found than to be in the arms of the Eternal God and Savior.  He is unchanging, everlasting, the First and the Last, and He is Yahweh Shammah, The Lord Is There.  

May you be filled with joy and peace in this season and beyond.

Much Love To You All,

L.A. Knowles

“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.”

-Isaiah 43:2

“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.”

-Joshua 1:9

“Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

-Isaiah 41:10

“You are my hiding place and my shield; I hope in your word.”

-Psalm 119:114

 

 

 

You, O LORD, are worthy of all honor, glory, and praise.

Thank you for never letting me go.

 

 

 

 

 

The Horrible Crabapple Tree, Plastic Sandwich Bag, & Disgruntled Me

APPLE TREE 1On the property of the house I grew up in, there was a Crabapple Tree, and I despised the tree.  As a kid, I blamed the tree for the miserable apples it produced, giving me the displeasure of having to pick up all the apples falling from it onto the ground. I hated picking up those apples, and I most often could be heard shouting, “I hate this!” and “Stupid apples!”
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I braced myself before I started that chore, put a plastic sandwich bag on my hand because of how rotten they were, and then I would begin.  It was the worst chore, but I had only two options to go outside and complete my chore OR be grounded.  I chose to complete my chore.  All I wanted was for the Crabapple Tree to work with me.  I wasn’t asking for a lot when I shouted at the tree, “Work with me!  Not against me.”
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It was an absolutely beautiful tree, but the fruit was rotten.


WHAT KIND OF TREE ARE YOU?

APPLE TREE 3
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Are you a good tree producing good fruit, or are you a bad tree, like the Crabapple Tree in this story, producing rotten fruit?
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Jesus had this to say in Luke 6:43-45, “For no good tree bears bad fruit, nor again does a bad tree bear good fruit, for each tree is known by its own fruit.  For figs are not gathered from thornbushes, nor are grapes picked from a bramble bush.  The good person out of the good treasure of his heart produces good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure produces evil, for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.”


“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.” -John 15:16



As a child of God, you are chosen by Jesus to go forth and bear much fruit.  How you conduct yourself is very important because unbelievers are watching you especially if you are witnessing to them about the Good News of Jesus Christ.  Some will try to push you to the edge to see how you will react, and so there must be a noticeable difference between you and those who are unbelievers.  Your conduct and your speech must line up together.  If the unbeliever cannot tell the difference between you and them, then there is a problem.  All of us are to be lights in this dark world.  If you live like the world while claiming to be a child of God, you are fooling yourself and still living in darkness (1 John 1:1-8).
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In 1 Samuel 9:2, King Saul is described as handsome.  God, however, saw King Saul’s heart.  King Saul did not do the will of God, bearing the fruits of disobedience and being more concerned about the approval of man.
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God tells Samuel in 1 Samuel 16:7, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” 
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And God is still telling us the same thing today.  God wants us to do His will, and when we do His will out of obedience and devotion to Him, we are producing good fruit.  When we spend time in prayer, the Holy Spirit is working in us, convicting us, changing us.  When we conform our will to the Lord’s will, we will produce good fruit.  The only reason we are able to bear the fruit God wants us to bear is because of His grace and His mercy, and as His Holy Spirit guides and leads us into His Truth, we bear the fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness, goodness, and self-control.
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What fruit are you bearing?  Are your actions and your words lining up together?  Are you walking the walk and not just talking the talk?  Is there a noticeable difference between you and the unbeliever?


“The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent.”  (2 Peter 3:9)



 Much Love To You All,
L.A.  Knowles

Thankful Heart

Praise The Lord

You, O LORD, are glorious, from everlasting to everlasting.  You are the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End.  You are the only Rock, the only Way;  You are Life and Truth. You are Holy, and You are King of kings and Lord of lords.  YOU, O God, are my Shield and my Buckler.  No one compares to You.  I put my hope and trust in You alone, and there is no other foundation except the foundation You have laid.  Thank You for being my Salvation, my Portion forever.  To You, Abba, I offer the sacrifice of praise, giving You thanks because You are worthy of all glory, of all honor, and all praise.

THANKSGIVING 1

 


PSALM 138 – A Psalm of David


I give you thanks, O Lord, with my whole heart;
before the gods I sing your praise;
I bow down toward your holy temple
and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness,
for you have exalted above all things
your name and your word.
On the day I called, you answered me;
my strength of soul you increased.

All the kings of the earth shall give you thanks, O Lord,
for they have heard the words of your mouth,
and they shall sing of the ways of the Lord,
for great is the glory of the Lord.
For though the Lord is high, he regards the lowly,
but the haughty he knows from afar.

Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
you preserve my life;
you stretch out your hand against the wrath of my enemies,
and your right hand delivers me.
The Lord will fulfill his purpose for me;
your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever.
Do not forsake the work of your hands.

 

This Pretty Much Says It All…

 

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“Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.  For by it the people of old received their commendation.” -Hebrews 11:1-2

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.  If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.  But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.  For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;   he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”  –James 1:2-8 (ESV)