SUPERNATURAL BOLDNESS

Man_Jumping_off_a_cliff

This past week in Bible study at my church, Life Unlimited Empowerment Center, we discussed the importance of staying motivated while on our spiritual journey and taking bold steps toward our dreams. I want to encourage you to pursue your dreams and boldly move forward as you are led by the Spirit. If you are going to realize your dreams, boldness is imperative.

The morning after attending the Bible study, I was led to focus on Numbers 13, the account of the twelve spies sent to the Promised Land. The question popped into my mind, why were Joshua and Caleb so bold? What caused them to see things differently than their ten other counterparts? As I did the character studies, I found that Joshua and Caleb were different from the other spies in that they possessed the following characteristics:

  1. A strong confidence in the promise God had made to them. For example, in Numbers 13:1 we read that God promised them the land. They believed God would do what He promised, and that was fuel for their boldness. God has made you some promises. Believe that He intends to bring them to pass, and boldness will rise up in you.
  2. A strong faith that was birth out of circumstances orchestrated by God. In Exodus 17:14, we are told that Joshua fought and won against the Amalekites and told Moses to write it down so Joshua would remember. Because Joshua had experienced God giving him victory in the past, he developed a strong faith that he would need for the future. You too can expect God to orchestrate your circumstances to build the faith you need in the future to do exploits.
  3. A commitment to trust in and follow God no matter what happens. Joshua 14:14 states that Caleb “followed the Lord, the God of Israel, completely.” In Numbers 14:24 we read, “My servant Caleb…has a different spirit and has followed me fully.” Therefore, we can conclude that the level of commitment in following the Lord is directly proportional to the level of boldness you will possess. If you are fully committed as Caleb was, you will be able to forge boldly ahead into your destiny in spite of the adversity that appears to loom before you.
  4. A proper view of God and themselves. The ten spies said they saw themselves as “grasshoppers” in Numbers 13:32. However, Caleb said in Numbers 13:30, “Let us go up at once and take possession of it; for we will certainly conquer it.” Apparently, Caleb saw himself as a conqueror. In Numbers 14:6-9, Joshua and Caleb said, “Do not fear the people of the land…Their protection has been removed from them, and the Lord is with us.” That signifies that they saw God as protector and defender, the decisive factor in gaining the victory, and that view of God was a solid platform for their spirit of boldness. Knowing Who your God is and who you are in Christ will enable you to be bold as well.

So if you want to be as bold as a lion, Child of God, stand on the promises of God. Embrace the circumstances that He allows to come your way for the purpose of building your faith. Be committed wholeheartedly to following the Lord and be determined that you will never turn your back on God regardless of the circumstances you encounter. Finally, know who you are and Whose you are on such a deep level that no one can convince you otherwise. If you have these four characteristics present in your life, you will find that boldness will rise up in you supernaturally.

What characteristic above resonates with you the most and why? Please leave a comment below. 

 

I’d love your help spreading the word about my book, Oasis for My Soul: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual and Personal Growth Click here to find out ways you can help.

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KEYS TO ACTIVATING THE PEACE WITHIN

PEACE

Today I want to talk about keys to activating your peace.  Peace is a very precious commodity. We need to maintain our peace for several reasons: 1) to be able to hear from God; 2) to maintain our health; 3) to be a good witness to unbelievers; 3)  to be able to be able to dominate and speak peace to situations in our lives; and 4) to maintain joy which gives us spiritual strength. That being said, obviously, maintaining a peaceful spirit is imperative.

THE FIRST STEP: RECOGNITION AND ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

The first step to activating peace in your life is to recognize and acknowledge that you have it. Jesus said in John 14:27, “My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you.” Galatians 5:22 says, “The fruit of the Spirit is…peace.” That tells us that if you have the Spirit within, you have peace residing within. Finally, Colossians 3:15 says, “Let the peace of God rule in your heart.” Therefore, it’s your choice whether you let the peace that’s in you rule or not.

KEYS TO ACTIVATING THE PEACE YOU HAVE

So now that you acknowledge that you actually do have peace within you, the question is, how do you activate that peace? It’s a shame that we allow the peace Jesus died to give us to lie dormant while the enemy wears us out with unnecessary anxiety and worry. It doesn’t have to be that way. Here are some keys to activating the peace which already resides within you:

  1. Identify wrong believing. I Corinthians 10:4 says that joy and peace are found in believing. When you uncover errors in your belief system and focus in on the promises of God, your heart will be settled and fear and worry will be dispelled. What are you believing?
  2. Pray and give thanks. Philippians 4:6-7 says, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer, supplication, and thanksgiving, make your request known unto God, and the peace of God which surpasses all understanding will keep your heart and mind in Christ Jesus.” Have you prayed about it? Have you expressed gratitude to God for what He has done in the past to show Himself faithful and expressed confidence in what He will do in the future?
  3. Focus on the Word. Isaiah 26:3 says, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” When you maintain a focus on the Word through worshiping God and speaking, meditating, and memorizing the Word, you are focusing on the Prince of Peace. God says He Himself will keep you peaceful. What are you focusing on?
  4. Focus on the peace within. When you feel anxious, you first have to recognize that you are out of peace, look within and “zoom in” on the peace in the midst of all the internal noise. Once you find the peace, you’ll begin to feel more peaceful, and then it’s a matter of maintaining that focus. It’s kind of like being in a crowded room with many conversations, but you hone in on the one person with whom you are talking. That’s called selective attention. What are you “selectively attending” to today? Your negative self-talk?

Beloved, you have to be intentional in your pursuit of peace, not passively stand by and let the devil beat you down with anxiety and worry. Peace is not going to just fall on you. Hebrews 4:11 says you have to LABOR to enter into rest. God has made the fruit of the Spirit available, but you must decide to pick it off of the Tree of Life and eat it.

Name a “peace stealer” in your life and how you plan to overcome it. Please leave a comment below. 

 

I’d love your help spreading the word about my book, Oasis for My Soul: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual and Personal Growth Click here to find out ways you can help.

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THE TOP TEN CHARACTERISTICS OF UNRIGHTEOUS ANGER

Angry woman with fists

Today I want to talk about the emotion of anger. We all get angry sometimes. Anger is an emotion created by God, and actually, there are two types of anger: righteous anger and unrighteous anger. Jesus displayed righteous anger, turning over tables when He saw people had turned His Father’s house into “a den of thieves” (Matthew 12:13). However, the Bible says to be angry and sin not. When we get angry and then allow that emotion to make us act in ways contrary to God’s Word, we end up displaying unrighteous anger.

Righteous anger can quickly turn into unrighteous anger if we are not careful.  How do we know if we have slipped from righteous anger into unrighteous anger that totally displeases God? I’m glad you asked! Here are the top ten characteristics of unrighteous anger:

  1. Anger about something that is not a direct violation of God’s Word, or a preference that you have set up as a law.
  2. A superior attitude that forgets its own imperfections and weaknesses, and looks down on others because of their flaws.
  3. Withdrawal from the person without any thought given as to how you can help the person grow and become better.
  4. A condemning attitude with the thought that this person can never be any better and fails to see that he or she is a work in progress just as you are.
  5. A failure to pray for the person to be enlightened and have a change of heart about their sin and for the Holy Spirit to help them change their ways.
  6. A failure to examine yourself to see if you have committed the very sin you are angry about when you see it in others.
  7. Talking about the person to others with absolutely no intention of gently confronting them and helping them to grow.
  8. A failure to give thought to what is possibly fueling the behavior or to see the person through Jesus’ eyes.
  9. Holding on to anger about the person’s sin for long periods of time, far more than a day, and letting it taint your behavior towards the person.
  10. Lashing out at a person in anger with un-Christlike behaviors and attitudes.

Galatians 6:1 says, “Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted.” I think that Paul is encouraging us to make sure that when we see sinful behavior in others, we don’t allow ourselves to be tripped up by sin ourselves, especially the sin of unrighteous anger. You cannot be steeped in unrighteous anger and be a restorer. Therefore, anger should be like a flare, which is defined as “a sudden brief burst of bright flame or light.” Likewise, our anger should “burn out” quickly because only then can the Holy Spirit use us to make a difference.

Which one of the top ten characteristics above do you fight against the most? Please leave a comment below.

 

I’d love your help spreading the word about my book, Oasis for My Soul: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual and Personal Growth Click here to find out ways you can help.

Would you like to receive your FREE e-chapbook entitled, Your Faith Has Made You Whole: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual Transformation, by Tracey L. Moore? Go to www.traceylmoore.com and sign up to receive my bi-weekly newsletter via email.

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PATIENCE IS YOUR FRIEND

Patience street sign

Have you been waiting on God for something? Waiting for what we want and need is hard sometimes. Proverbs 13:12 says, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but a longing fulfilled is a tree of life.” One of the best anecdotes for heartsickness is to develop the fruit of the Spirit of patience.

What Is Patience, and Why Do We Need It?
Patience is the ability to stay peaceful on the inside and wait for what you want and need without agitation, even when things are not going as you had hoped on the outside. We don’t like to talk about patience because we don’t like to wait. We want what we want when we want it. But patience is our friend. Patience keeps us peaceful. Patience gives us the ability to endure hardship like a good soldier. It’s through faith AND patience we inherit the promises. Patience breathes life into our faith by allowing hope to remain intact for the long haul.

Examples of Patience
There are many examples in the Bible where the saints had to wait many years for God to bring their hopes and dreams to pass:

  1. The Israelites were in bondage hundreds of years before God delivered them.
  2. Joseph was in prison 12 years before he went to the palace.
  3. Jesus Himself had to wait 30 years before He started His ministry.
  4. The woman with the issue of blood waited 12 years to get her miracle.
  5. Abraham waited 23 years to get his son of promise, Isaac.

Time after time, we see that God’s people had to wait on Him for many years before they received what they hoped for. I’m not saying you will have to necessarily wait as long as they did. But what makes us think we won’t have to wait? Why do we give up on our dreams so easily?

Adjusting Our Expectations is a Must
When we study our Father’s ways, we will be much better able to hang on to our faith for longer periods of time because we know how He operates.  For example, we know He’s an “eleventh hour” kind of God. He’s usually not early, but He is NEVER late. So why do we get so impatient expecting Him to show up early on?  We know what we should expect from God based on His impeccable track record, but for some reason, we keep expecting Him to be different. Knowledge of God and how He operates will help you to maintain your peace and patience in times of difficulty. The key lies in knowing that what you are going through will not last forever because everything is subject to change but the Word of God.

Therefore, be encouraged. Be a hope addict and let patience fuel your faith for the long haul. Psalm 27:14 says, “Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord.” God said, “Wait on the Lord” twice. That’s important because patience will result in your heart being strengthened. Lack of patience, which eventually leads to full-blown hopelessness, will make your heart sick. Which will you choose?

How has patience proved to be a positive thing in your life? Please leave your comment below. 

I’d love your help spreading the word about my book, Oasis for My Soul: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual and Personal Growth Click here to find out ways you can help.

Would you like to receive your FREE e-chapbook entitled, Your Faith Has Made You Whole: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual Transformation, by Tracey L. Moore? Go to www.traceylmoore.com and sign up to receive my bi-weekly newsletter via email.

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HOW TO GET YOUR DESIRES FULFILLED

Black Woman Praying -diana-simumpande-197805-unsplash (2).jpg

All of us have desires, or longings that we are waiting for God to fulfill. Psalm 37:4 says, “Delight yourself in the LORD, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” This promise, just as every other promise of God in the Word, is CONDITIONAL. If we want the desires of our heart to be fulfilled, we have to delight ourselves in the Lord.

Let’s break that down. What does delight mean? The definition of delight is to be happy because of, or to enjoy something very much. The Apostle Paul said, “Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say rejoice.”  The definition of rejoice is to feel joy or great delight. To rejoice in the Lord, is to delight in him. Therefore, delighting in the Lord apparently is super important because Paul felt that it was necessary to repeat it.

So as you can see, if you want the desires of your heart to be fulfilled, you must delight in the Lord. What does that look like? How do you know if you are delighting in the Lord? Here are ten questions you can ask yourself to make that determination:

  1. Is He first in your thoughts when you wake up?
  2. Do you enjoy spending time alone in His presence?
  3. Do your hunger for the Word?
  4. Do you attend church regularly?
  5. Is Christian/Gospel music your first choice when you turn on the radio?
  6. Do you keep His commandments?
  7. Do you hang around people who love Him and love to talk about Him?
  8. Do you have a burning desire to tell others about Him?
  9. You are a tither who wants to honor God with your giving?
  10. When you think about what He’s done for you, do you get overwhelmed with gratitude?

If you delight yourself in the Lord, He WILL give you the desires of your heart! That is a promise. But what does that mean? First, He puts the desire in you for the things He wants you to have. God through His Holy Spirit is able to influence your desires and change them over time. Second, He will give you the things you desire. You see, He has no problem giving you things you desire when you delight yourself in Him because He is fully confident that you will not make idols out of those things.

Child of God, as you delight yourself in Him, you think like He thinks, and your will eventually will line up with His will, which is His Word. When that happens, you know you will receive what you ask for because according to I John 5:14-15, if you ask anything according to His will, He hears you, and if He hears you, you know you have the petitions that you ask of Him. Therefore, if you are delighting yourself in the Lord and have a desire that is yet to be fulfilled, hang on to your faith. Rest assured that He put the desire there because He wants to fulfill it.

What are your thoughts about delighting in the Lord? Please leave your comment below. 

I’d love your help spreading the word about my book, Oasis for My Soul: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual and Personal Growth Click here to find out ways you can help.

Would you like to receive your FREE e-chapbook entitled, Your Faith Has Made You Whole: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual Transformation, by Tracey L. Moore? Go to www.traceylmoore.com and sign up to receive my bi-weekly newsletter via email.

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PATIENCE IS A VIRTUE

Patience street sign

You’ve heard the old adage, “Patience is a virtue.” However, many of us struggle with God’s seemingly slow timetable when it comes to doing things in our lives and the lives of others. As you well know, God is not in a rush to do most things. Sometimes He will act suddenly, but usually after a long wait time. He is more like a crockpot than a microwave oven when it comes to cooking up things in our lives. The reason is that God is the most patient person in the universe.

I John 4:8 says, “God is love.” I Corinthians 13:4 says, “Love is patient.” Therefore, it follows that we must conclude and accept that God is patient. 2 Peter 3:8-9 says, “With the Lord, a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years is like a day. He is patient with you.”

The definition of patience is “the ability to accept or tolerate delays, problems, or suffering without becoming annoyed or anxious.” That’s exactly how God wants us to be. He says, “Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect” (Matthew 5:48). Perfect means mature, and God expects us to mature and progress as we continue on our spiritual journey by developing patience in the following areas:

Be patient in waiting on Him. Psalm 37:7 says, “Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him.” God is omniscient and omnipotent, and He knows what is best for you. As you wait on him, let that truth empower you to remain content and anxiety free in your circumstances until your change comes.

Be patient with other people. Ephesians 4:2 says, “Be completely humble, gentle, be patient, bearing with one another in love.” When we are patient with others, we are showing love. Again, love is patient, and you have the ability to be patient because of the fruit of the Spirit that lies within you as a believer. Also, it helps when you remember if you are able to do something better or faster than someone else, it’s only by the grace of God.

Be patient with yourself.  Matthew 22:39 says, “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.” Since love is patient, you love yourself by being patient with yourself. When you condemn yourself for your failures or for not being where you think you should be in life, you are not being patient or loving towards you. There is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1). God is patient with you, and He wants you to be patient with yourself.

Ecclesiastes 7:8 says, “Patience is better than pride.” That says that impatience is a form of pride. Patience is a form of humility. Impatience is a form of idolatry. Pride says, ” I know better than God what the timing should be or where I should be on my journey.” Pride looks at others and thinks, “Why can’t you be as far along as I am?” or “Why are you struggling with that? What’s taking you so long?” Pride says, “I am responsible for making my own way, and I will make myself pay for my own sins and short-comings through self-condemnation.” Therefore, let’s be determined to defer to the timing of God, be patient with others when we have gained mastery in areas that they have not, and be patient with ourselves when we fail to live up to our own standards.

How is God teaching you about patience at this time in your life? Please leave your comment below. 

I’d love your help spreading the word about my book, Oasis for My Soul: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual and Personal Growth Click here to find out ways you can help.

Would you like to receive your FREE e-chapbook entitled, Your Faith Has Made You Whole: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual Transformation, by Tracey L. Moore? Go to www.traceylmoore.com and sign up to receive my bi-weekly newsletter via email.

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CONCLUSIONS DRAWN FROM THE TRAGIC DEATH OF ANTHONY BOURDAIN

Anthony_Bourdain

Last week, we were informed of the tragic suicidal death of Anthony Bourdain, world renown chef, author, storyteller, and star of CNN’s popular show, Parts Unknown. Apparently, Mr. Bourdain was struggling in his emotional life behind closed doors, although he looked as though he had everything to live for. He had fame and fortune, and traveled all over the world, taking one excursion after another. He appeared to be at the top of his game, but in private, he battled the demonic and was not able to overcome the sadness and hopelessness that had overtaken his soul.  This is such a tremendous loss, and I am so sorry this happened. When I heard the news, I was completely stunned.

I have no idea what Tony Bourdain’s spiritual state was when he chose to leave this world on his own terms. I am not judging him in any way because I Corinthians 4:5 says, “Therefore judge nothing before the appointed time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light what is hidden in darkness and will expose the motives of the heart. At that time each will receive their praise from God.” I pray that he knew the Lord as his personal Savior. However, after pondering this sad situation, I came to the following conclusions:

  1. It’s important to share the Gospel with people, even if they look like they don’t need it or want it. Jesus said the Pharisees were like whitewashed tombs full of dead men’s bones (Matthew 23:27). Just because someone looks good on the outside, doesn’t mean that is a reflection of what is going on inside them. There is a popular song called People Need the Lord, and that is so true in today’s world. Regardless of what a person looks like externally, he or she is in desperate need of the Lord.
  2. We need to have an attitude of urgency. People are dying without Christ every day and being doomed to spend an eternity apart from our heavenly Father. We have to put aside our own agendas and pursue God’s agenda: winning souls. If we urgently share the Good News with others, perhaps we might be able to help those who are in the same desperate situation that Mr. Bourdain was and head off disaster. Our sense of urgency could end up changing the course of someone’s life.
  3. We must be as bold and relentless in sharing the Gospel as Satan is in spreading his deception and lies. The enemy is on the attack. His goal is to steal, kill and destroy, but Jesus said He came so that we might have abundant life (John 10:10). The enemy is bold in his attempt to destroy lives, and he boldly injects his lies into our minds as often as possible. He also is very persistent and does not give up easily. Therefore, if we are to win people to Christ and snatch them out of the kingdom of darkness, as believers, we must wage a fierce counterattack that is equally as bold and relentless.

In closing, I urge you to reflect on how you can step up your game in sharing the Good News. Who in your sphere of influence needs to hear about Jesus? Who looks like they have it all together, but in reality, they are suffering in silence? Who is the Holy Spirit telling you to talk to, but you have turned a deaf ear to the still small voice? Is fear is keeping you from sharing the Gospel? If so, I encourage you to pray the following prayer I found on the Internet (http://voice-wilderness.org/questions-about-god/how-to-overcome-the-fear-of-man):

“God, if you will take the fear of man away from me, I will never miss an opportunity to speak for you. Wherever I am, if I feel your elbow in my ribs, I’ll say whatever you want me to say, to whomever you want me to say it.” Amen.

Therefore, let’s follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit, die to self, overcome our fears, share the Gospel with abandon, and take as many people to heaven with us as possible.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline:  1-800-273-8255

 

What is your strategy for getting better at sharing the Gospel with those who desperately need to hear it? Please leave a comment below. 

I’d love your help spreading the word about my book, Oasis for My Soul: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual and Personal Growth Click here to find out ways you can help.

Would you like to receive your FREE e-chapbook entitled, Your Faith Has Made You Whole: Poems and Inspirational Writings for Spiritual Transformation, by Tracey L. Moore? Go to www.traceylmoore.com and sign up to receive my bi-weekly newsletter via email.

Find me on Facebook:  www.facebook.com/TraceyLMoore2012

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