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Archive for the ‘Devotions’ Category

Continual prayer

Posted by appolus on February 17, 2020

1Th 5:17 Pray without ceasing.

Most of us have a concept of prayer that is all about talking. We start of by giving thanks, then we make our requests, we pray for family members and before we know it has become ritualistic and barren. Prayer should be much more like breathing. When was the last time you thought about breathing? You’re probably not even conscious of your breathing yet you do it continually and it sustains you and gives you life. Prayer is our relationship with God. They are one and the same. If we attempt to separate them then we will get lost. There are no formulas, no secret methods, prayer is being in the presence of God.

Prayer times and quiet times are good. For many this is our moments when we connect with God. In the morning and in the evening before we go to bed. Yet if we have neglected His presence all day, our prayer times will not be as effective. In our minds we must take God every-where we go, whispering to Him all through the day as we face the challenges, trials and temptations that come with life.

Begin to see God everywhere. Don’t simply walk out the door and leave Him behind to pick Him up again in the evening. Let the Lord invade every part of your day. You will be amazed at how this will change everything. You will not just be talking to Him in your prayer times and quiet times, He will become an integral part of everything that you do and think and say. Remember, He is the reality, the world we go out into every day is but the shadow, walk in the reality of God.

Each whisper, every God-ward thought, every word spoken, each moment of silence spent in His presence is like a musical note to the Lord. The Scriptures refer to the Lord as “He who sits above the circle of the earth.” And so He who sits above the circle of the earth sees each and every one of these musical notes from around the world from the Body of Christ rising up in a majestic symphony of love and worship and it is a sweet, sweet sound in His ears.

Wont you become part of that symphony today? Let your day be filled with thoughts of Him. Release whispers of love to add to the music of prayer. Simply whisper the name of Jesus all throughout the day. Remind Him of how much you love Him and thank Him continually for the day, no matter what kind of day that your having. Rediscover that bond of love and joy and peace that comes simply by being in His presence. When you do this brothers and sisters, your prayer life will change dramatically, but not only your prayer life, life itself.

For when we walk in continual prayer we begin to see the beauty of the Lord everywhere. If it rains, we see His beauty in the raindrops. If the sun shines then we see His beauty as the flowers turn themselves around to face the glory of the risen Son. If it is cloudy we can see his beauty break through the clouds in beams of light that remind us that despite the momentary darkness, He is not finished with us and that His light is ready to break through the darkness of our situations and this world. When we fly above the clouds we discover that there is a perpetual blue sky. In the same manner brothers and sisters there is a table set before you. Can you see it? Goodness is the meat to the hungry soul found in the Word of God and mercy is the living waters of life to the thirsty saint found in His presence. It is His promise that these shall follow you all the days of your life.

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Vast beyond compare

Posted by appolus on February 14, 2020

That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.(Eph 3:17-19)

If it’s the moon they say 250,000 miles or if it’s the sun they say 93 million miles. But after that they start talking in light years. They say that there are bodies millions of light years away—say 10 million just to get a start. So if you want to know how far it is from earth to that body I’m talking about, you multiply 5 trillion, 862 billion, 484 million by 10 million. Doesn’t that stun you? It makes my head ache! Seen over against this, you and I are terribly small (A.W.Tozer The Attributes of God)

Can you see what Tozer is getting at? He is showing us just how vast the universe is and yet how infinitesimally small it actually is in comparison to God almighty. This is beyond our ability to comprehend. It is too big. Yet right there in the Scriptures it says that those who have Christ in their hearts, and are rooted and grounded in love can indeed comprehend God. Think on that a while. Comprehend God. We can know the breadth of His majesty. We can know the depths of His love. We can know the heights of His glory. In short, we can know that which is beyond knowledge. We can be filled with the fullness of our God who is infinitely vast. This is astonishing that we can enter into and be filled with His fullness. It’s is an invitation by our Lord who owes His creation nothing. And yet He beckons us to come into the glory. Our God wants to share this with us. And there is purpose in it.

For this purpose Paul bowed his knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus, his Father and our Father. The purpose is that we faint not in the midst of tribulations. When we apprehend His glory we comprehend His glory. When we comprehend His glory we are strengthened by His might in His Spirit in the inner man. On the outside we may be in prison, we may be hard pressed on every side, perplexed and persecuted and struck down but we stand fast and we are not overcome. We stand and do not fall because He is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or even think according to His power that is in us, the fullness of His power. Glory to God in the highest. He causes us, whose heart He dwells in by faith and who are rooted and grounded in love, to stand.

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You who are called to love!

Posted by appolus on February 12, 2020

It’s not what goes into your mouth that defiles you; you are defiled by the words that come out of your mouth (Matt 15:11)

Isn’t it interesting that Jesus would say that it was not what man takes into him that defiles him, but it is what comes out of him that can be defiling. As I was praying I caught a vision of tall trees, a vast forest. It occurred to me that trees soak up the carbon dioxide that we as humans breathe out, and in turn the trees turned this poison into life giving oxygen.

We, the children of God are the trees of the world and we move in harmony to the wind of the Spirit. We take upon us the offenses of this world. The hatred, the bitterness and the false accusation and we do this all in our every-day lives whether it is with coworkers or family and friends or even brothers and sisters in Christ. We are called to this brothers and sisters.

Do you have the grace and the faith and most especially the love to be able to fulfill your role? Are you dealing with difficult people right now? Have you been hurt and offended? Breathe deeply brothers and sisters, yes take it in and breathe out life giving love in response. The closer these people are the more difficult this will be. Who can hurt us more than our spouses and our children? Yet the degree of difficulty only magnifies the love and the power of God in us. Nothing tills the soil of our hearts more than this. Nothing removes the stones in our own hearts more than this. It is power in the Kingdom and weakness in the world. What Kingdom shall we walk in saints? How then shall we grow?

You have been supernaturally created to be able to take this poison and darkness and expel love and light in its place. It is our calling. When we stand before the Lord, I am fully convinced that this will be our offering to Him. For what reward will the world give you to take the insult? Where is the pat on the back for returning love for evil? There will be no recognition, no standing ovation in this world, but the Lord will see and what He sees is pure gold. And this is the treasure that will meet us in the world to come.

Into the darkness of this world we shall bring the light of Christ, for we are the bearers of the light. The love of Jesus our Lord, the love of God the Father, poured out upon us who deserved nothing is a monumental thing. In the light of this love we have been called to love the world. We who have been forgiven for so much have been called to forgive. Will it tear the flesh from your back? Will it scar you? Certainly it will. Look to Calvary and see the scars upon our Saviors back, see how they pierced Him and hated Him. You scars tell the story saints, it tells the story of His glory. Not on some majestic mountaintop but down in the mud and the mire of the deepest valleys. This is how we share His glory. Treasure in the Kingdom and garbage to this world. Diametrically opposed worlds separated by paradoxes. Jesus sees your scars, and the secrets that He sees He will one day reward you openly for. Maybe not in this world but certainly in the next.

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Every circumstance is a door.

Posted by appolus on February 10, 2020

Heb 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith;

Only that which flows from an uninterrupted gaze on Him is real. Everything else is the shadow of the object. Granted, the shadow of the Lord is more powerful than all that can be seen, and one can even enjoy the heat from the sun in the shadow. Yet the glow from the face of Moses was not the glow of a man who stood in the shadows. I believe that the Lord can pour out his unadulterated light if it is not diffused by the efforts of middle men or intermediaries.

Can it be that simple? Can we simply come into His presence and be changed? Does everything begin and end with the Lord Jesus? How does one continue to look to Jesus? It is a conscious act of the will to take our eyes of our circumstances and cast them upon Jesus. This is the great battle of our lives, not our circumstances. Our circumstances can simply be doors that if walked through lead directly into His presence. It is in that place, looking unto Jesus, that we are changed. Trust is the key that opens the door. To trust in God is to walk through the opened door of our circumstances into the throne room of God.

There are two Kingdoms. The kingdom of the world and the Kingdom of God. One is seen and affected by our senses and circumstances. The other is unseen and if walked in, relegates our circumstances to mere opportunities to go deeper into its depths. Now these two kingdoms compete for our attentions. You must cry out to God every day to bind up the reality of the kingdom of this world and to loose the reality of the Kingdom of God in your life. Cry out to God to give you eyes to see what He sees and how He sees it. Can you imagine the prospect of every situation you face being an opportunity to grow in grace and power? This is the Kingdom reality, will you walk in it today?

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Victory

Posted by appolus on February 7, 2020

1 Cor 15:57 But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Do you have the victory saints? What is “the victory?” In verse 54 it says that “Death is swallowed up in victory.” There are many kinds of death just as there are many kinds of victories. There is of course physical death and for those saints who “have the victory,’ then every aspect of death’s power, fear and dread and darkness are swallowed up by the life of Christ. For we know that because He lives then so shall we. The darkness of this world shall be swallowed whole by the light of Christ that is brighter than a thousand suns. Let all you suns of the universe hide yourselves in shame as mere candles in the wind when my Lord appears.

And because we “know” Him we have already been touched by the glory of His light. Can you feel it’s glow even now deep within your heart? It burns at the center of who we are. There is life in this light of God. There is power and there is victory and because there is we can say with full authority to death- where is your sting? Oh grave where is your victory? You have been defeated and you have been swallowed whole. The victory belongs to Jesus. His very life is our victory and His eternal throne means that out victory is eternal.

And therefore if death has been overcome and we ourselves have died to this world then we are now alive to walk in His Kingdom. And in this Kingdom we walk in victory. In every situation we have something that belongs to Jesus and was created by His very life. The light of Christ. It overcomes every darkness saints. When you apply this light to whatever battle that you are in you will find the victory. There is victory in the glory. Just as the glory of God fills all of heavens chambers that are vast beyond imagination, then it also fills you. His glory is your victory. For it’s release from your spirit lights up the darkness of every corner of your soul. When the deer pants for the waterbrooks and finally finds the fresh springs that flow from heavens throne then she rejoices.

Victory. That is what you have today saint. It lies within you for the Lord rules and reigns in your heart. You are a single tear drop away from His glory. No matter your situation today saints, search, like the deer, for the waters of life, the glory and the victory that lies within you. There is a fountain, an eternal spring and its waters have life and they have been prepared for your use. Desperation is often the key that opens the door of humility revealing the source of life and victory. Jesus is the life and the light , the watererbrooks, the eternal springs and the glory and the victory.

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His presence

Posted by appolus on January 30, 2020

Ex 33:15… And he said to Him, If Your presence does not go with me, do not carry us up from here.

We all know and would agree that God is omnipresent. This means that He is everywhere at the same time. This is an indisputable fact. Yet, the manifest presence of God, the felt presence of God is something entirely different. Moses had no desire to go anywhere unless God was with him and he could commune with Him. How long has it been since you have communed with God in the midst of His manifest presence? Perhaps you never have? Or perhaps you are going through a dry spell? In the midst of one of these dry spells I remember, in my distress, on my knees, just reaching my open hand up to the heavens and crying out to God.

And very silently, without any warning, He was holding my hand. And all of a sudden that world was there again. The world of endless possibilities. In this world it does not matter if there are dark skies or endless blue ones when I am holding His hand. Whether it rains or whether brilliant shafts of light break through ominous clouds, it’s all the same to me when I hold His hand. If I can barely see through my tears of if I wear the most illuminated smile, it matters not when I hold His hand. In the depths of trials or when all is right with the world I am at peace when I hold His hand. If I mourn the loss of a loved one or or cannot see my way ahead, I am never lost when I hold His hand.

The sweet all-consuming joy of His presence. This heart of a lion that beats within the chest of a lamb. This all-consuming power of love that rises victoriously above all the battles of life. This is life when we are walking in His presence. What battle field do you find yourself on today? Do you battle the unseen enemy of unforgiveness? Or has someone wronged you and bitterness bangs on your door? Is depression seeking to overwhelm you? Has the power of darkness in all its many forms come to challenge you today? Perhaps the darkness comes from the outside, or maybe there is hidden darkness from deep within?

Today, right now, close your eyes and reach out your hand into the darkness of your situation. Cry out to Jesus, tell Him how much that you miss Him and ask Him to take your hand. Your situation may not change, but the darkness will flee. You will be blessed in the midst of your circumstances and you will stand upon the Rock which is higher than your circumstances. He will carry you on eagles wings as the updrafts of His presence hold you and keep you. Where could we flee from His presence?

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Truth in the depths

Posted by appolus on January 27, 2020

Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom. Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
(Psa 51:6-7)

In another verse from this psalm David cries out “Cast me not away from your presence oh Lord and take not your Holy Spirit from me.” Here we are witnessing the agonizing process and the inner workings of a broken and a contrite heart. David knows his problem is an internal one. The external sin of adultery and murder was a direct result of the inner workings of his heart, his hidden parts. He realizes that he has sinned against God alone. This is where it started and this is where it must be finished. The sin is a mere symptom of a disease that was working deep inside his heart. When we are stricken in such a way as this we no longer have the fellowship of the Holy Spirit. Joy has fled from us as the darkness of our souls floods the inner sanctums of our heart.

God sent a prophet to speak to David. The prophet reached into the dark places and exposed the process of David’s spiritual death. He brought it into the light and the full horror of Davids actions are suddenly visited upon him. He staggers into the light from the depths of his darkness. God had called David out from the grave. David had placed himself into the tomb and a stone was rolled in front of it. In the story of Lazarus, Jesus has the stone rolled away and commands Lazarus to come forth. He staggers out of the tomb and the grave clothes are removed from him. Who do you know that has buried their hearts in the depths of darkness and rolled a stone in front of it? Perhaps the garden of your own heart, the most intimate part of who you are has been buried in death and sin? It has become a grave and you have robed yourself in the the death clothes of sin and separation from God. The Lord requires truth in the inward parts, the most intimate part of who we are. Without this it is impossible to walk in fellowship with God.

God desires that the joy of your salvation would return to you. He desires that you would walk in the newness of life in the Spirit and not the darkness of spiritual death. In the very depths of you He desires to create in you a clean heart and renew a right spirit within you. The question is, do you desire such a thing? Do you want to have ears to hear the Lord cry out ‘come forth.” Do you want to have eyes to see the light of a brand new day? Do you want to awaken the dawn with the praises of God? Listen to what the Spirit is saying to you and with a contrite and broken spirit come back into that place from where you have fallen. Today is the day.

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The arc bends

Posted by appolus on January 24, 2020

Mat 21:44  And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder. 

The Word of God is immovable, it sits as the cornerstone of all that exists. The arc of our lives must bend towards the Word of God.Time and space itself bends to the Word. The revealed truth of God establishes the foundations of all existence. In the beginning was the word and God created the heaven and the earth. The spoken word of God calls forth light and the light creates a separation between itself and the darkness. The light of God is still separate from the darkness. And in the end the Word remains and every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that the Word, the Lord Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.

The word of God speaks to the sons of light and it calls them to bend. If the arc of your life does not bend to the word of God then the word of God does not hold sway over your lives. It may intrigue you. It may fascinate you. It may challenge you. You may argue about it and it may be mere philosophy to you, but if it has not bent you, if your life has not been broken by it and renewed and put back together by it then it does not sit on the throne of your heart. The truly broken will bend, yet in the end all those who resist and reject the chief cornerstone, that stone shall fall upon them and they shall be ground to powder and be scattered like dust.

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Strange companions

Posted by appolus on January 23, 2020

Ecc 1:18 For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow.

The more we know, the more our sorrow increases. Grief follows wisdom and sorrow follows knowledge. True wisdom from God is surely mingled with grief because our spirit resides within flesh. When a wise man hears the foolish speak then he is grieved in his soul. It is said that you cannot put an old head on young shoulders and it is true, yet neither can wisdom prosper in the hearts of the unwise. Only those who truly seek after the Lord can benefit from the wisdom of God.

To know the deep things of God, to have been touched at the very center of your soul with something of the knowledge of God brings with it sorrow. No man can stand before the presence of God and grasp something of His majesty and be filled with his eternal beauty and not suffer upon his return from this place. The world grows dim and dark and exists in shades of grey to the one who has stood in this impenetrable light. The closer we move into the depths of His heart, the harder it is to live in a fallen world. It is a very good thing to know God more and to move in His wisdom. Yet let us be clear, all attachments of this world will begin to lose their grip upon your soul. And one might say then where lies the problem? To the man or woman who walks only in the Kingdom reality it is no problem, yet for the rest who still has something of this world in them, which is most of us, then sorrow and grief are like two intimate companions.

He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief (Isa 53:3) No one knew sorrow and grief like our Lord knew them. Everything stood before Him, He knew it all. He could see the destruction of Jerusalem and He wept. He could see His own rejection and crucifixion and yet He loved. The greater the knowledge of Him, the greater the cost. The greater the wisdom of God in us the more we share in His grief. And yet all of this is offset by the glory and the joy. In this world knowledge and sorrow are life long companions. Wisdom walks hand in hand with grief. And yet for the joy that is set before us let us endure all things looking unto Jesus, the author and the finisher of our faith and let us ever come before the throne.

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While He may be found

Posted by appolus on January 15, 2020

Isa 55:6  Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: 

The real test for us as Christians is how we walk along the path set before us. We can walk with the Lord by our side, and by that I mean we can walk with His empowering manifest presence. Not unlike the disciples that walked with Jesus after His resurrection and their hearts burned as He taught them. His very nearness and His Spirit caused their hearts to burn and glow. Or, we can walk alone, and by that I mean we can walk in our own strengths minus the awareness of His presence.

Now we know saints, as good Bible scholars, that God is omnipresent, meaning He is everywhere at the same time. And as saints we know that He also dwells in our hearts. This is not what we are here referring to here. We are talking about what it means to walk in the nearness of the Spirit of God as opposed to walking in the flesh. And as saints we can do both. If we would walk in the Spirit of God, walk in His awareness and therefore walk in His power, then we must, as the Lord told us to, seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness. Every day. Every moment. We must be aware of the Kingdom and the Kingdom walk. Our eyes must be engaged in Kingdom sight. We must see things through the lense of the Lord and His word. Our mouths must be engaged in the Kingdom language, we must speak as ambassadors of the King. We must draw near to Him and not quench the Spirit of God. To quench the Spirit of God is to pour cold water upon our burning hearts. Will you throw another log on the fire and cause it to burn brighter, or will you douse it with the cold waters of the world?

A man and a wife can stay in the same house but never be intimate, perhaps even stay in two different bedrooms. Are they close? Yes, in proximity. Are they married? Yes, still married. Yet, because they are not intimate they are really no better than room-mates. One may call it a love-less marriage. Who would want to be part of a love-less marriage? It is considered by most as a tragedy. How greater a tragedy than to be room-mates with the Lord? Yes He is in your heart, yes you are saved, but you are never spiritually intimate. The real tragedy in a marriage is if one longed for intimacy but the other never responded or had no such need or desire. Jesus longs to be spiritually intimate with His disciples. Only as a result of this intimacy can we expect to be aware of His presence. We grow together in intimacy. We become alike in intimacy. Two become one in intimacy. The man or the woman who does not understand, seek or desire to be intimate with the Lord shall never grow and his or her walk will be a very lonely one.

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Yea though I walk

Posted by appolus on January 13, 2020

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me (Psa 23:4)

Isn’t that the beginning and end of it all? No matter what we are suffering, no matter what we are going through, as long as He is with us then we can go through it. Through the waters, through the floods, through every trial and tribulation and vexation of heart and soul and mind and body. If we are found in Him and He is in us and with us then we shall prevail, we shall overcome. And not only prevailing and overcoming but also victory. There is victory in Jesus and that is why there is and can be joy even in the midst of the valley of the shadow of death. For when He is with us, and we are aware of His presence, He is our green pastures. His presence restores our soul. His presence is our still waters.

I find in Him I have no want, He is my all and all and He is my everything. And because He is my everything He is my path and He leads me and guides me. He anoints my head with oil and my cup is overflowing, whether in the valley of the shadow of death or the glorious mountaintops of His transfiguration. This table that He sets before me is an everlasting and eternal one. There has been served upon this table the delicacies of goodness and mercy and love and forgiveness. A feast fit for a hungry heart that pants and longs for the good things of the Lord. Saint, today is the day that you are invited to sit down at this table and the goodness and the mercy that you shall find there will follow you all the days of your life.

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The words of eternal life.

Posted by appolus on January 12, 2020

Joh 6:68 Then Simon Peter answered Him, Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the Words of eternal life.

Where shall we go, those of us who know Jesus? To the world? Impossible. Back to the life that we came from? Who would want to be dead again and wallow in our own vomit? No, those of us who know Jesus, no matter how hard the calling, no matter how difficult the road, shall stay right there by His side for in Him is life and everything else is death. Man does not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds forth from the mouth of God. His Word and His words are life to us. They sustain us in the rain, they keep us in the storm, they cover us when the darkness rages all around. His Word, His presence keeps us and upholds us.

By coming to Him, by staying close to His presence, His manifest presence, you receive His power like living waters through your pores, through your senses, through your spirit through every particle of your being right down to the very molecules that makes up who you are. You are infused by Him and by being infused by Him, by consuming Him, by being consumed by Him, you are changed by Him. And you become more like Him and worship Him more. You read the Word more and you pray more and you weep more and you live more and you love more. And most importantly, you are obedient to His Word and that still small voice.

You are more compassionate and you are more joyful and more grateful and more thankful and you witness more, not out of any legal requirement but out of necessity because your bones burn within you. Your heart is on fire, your whole body glows in the residue of your encounter. You are infused by Him and it makes you diffuse the fragrance of His knowledge in every place(2 Cor 2:14) So many men choose their own strength to try and achieve everything that can only be achieved in His presence because to come to Him, to come close to the light, it illuminates our dark deeds.Yet eternal life dwells within His presence and it draws us and it keeps us close to our Lord. Better to come before Him in intimate confession and dwell in the light and in life, than to stay in the darkness and in the shades of grey where only death dwells.

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In Him

Posted by appolus on January 8, 2020

2Co 2:14 But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere.

Every triumph we have we have in Christ. He is our victory and in Him we have victory. If we overcome it is because He overcame. If we love it is because He first loved us. If we forgive it is because we are forgiven by Him. When we weep, we know that He wept first. And when we give comfort to others it is because we ourselves were first comforted by Him. Every good thing, every triumph we have we have in Christ. This is why He leads us in a triumphal procession. And as we follow Him in victory then the world gets to witness the knowledge of Him and His victory over hell and sin and death.

They get to see how He broke every chain and how He healed our broken hearts. Every obstacle removed. They see a new creature in Christ who in Him has taken captive that which had formerly held us captive. We are more than conquerors in Christ Jesus. You see that phrase “in Christ.” This is the key to everything. We must be found “in Him.” Paul suffered the loss of all things to be found “in Him.” And when we are found in Him, then and only then is the fragrance of His beauty and glory and majesty and knowledge spread abroad in the hearts of man everywhere.

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Am I still standing?

Posted by appolus on January 7, 2020

Eze 47:3  And when the man that had the line in his hand went forth eastward, he measured a thousand cubits, and he brought me through the waters; the waters were to the ankles. 

There is a river that flows from heaven itself. It flows through our hearts and beckons us to come deeper. This river is spoken of in many places in Scriptures. It is the presence of God and it brings us deeper into the heart of the Almighty. There are trees on either side of this river and their roots are directly connected to the river and they are perpetually green, evergreen trees for the healing of the people and the nations. The river itself brings healing everywhere it goes. To be walking in the Spirit is to be swimming in the river of life. As we see in Ezekiel 47, the Lord brings us to through the waters. Always the Lord, compelling His children to come deeper into Him. Not ankle deep, not knee deep or even waist deep but fully immersed in a river so vast that it cannot be crossed, it can only be swum in. We must give ourselves to the river, let go and give way to the current of the Holy Spirit. Whether you are ankle deep, knee deep or even waist deep, you are still standing on your own two feet. In many respects you are still in charge. Yet to give ourselves completely to the river we are no longer standing.

When we are fully given to our Lord. When we are yielded to the depths and the power of this vast river, the power of the Holy Spirit, only then can we truly be led. All resistance is gone in its depths. It is carrying you towards the sea, the vastness of God Himself. Ever closer, ever deeper into the Father’s heart. And the Lord says to to you “come, I will bring you through the waters into the deep.” “Seek me with your whole heart and I shall be found and you shall be rewarded for your diligence, I am your exceeding great reward.”

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Throw open your windows

Posted by appolus on December 30, 2019

Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house; and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he kneeled upon his knees three times a day, and prayed, and gave thanks before his God, as he did aforetime.Dan 6:10

Wicked men who hated Daniel and who were jealous of him came up with a decree that they persuaded the king to sign. This was a trap. By decreeing that no man or woman could petition their God for thirty days they knew they could either control Daniel or destroy him. Now Daniel certainly knew this. What he did was instructive for us today. Now perhaps many of us would go home and shut our windows and pray to God anyway despite what had been decreed. Maybe some of us would follow the decree and rationalize it by thinking that it was only 30 days, what harm would it cause? Daniel went home, and with his windows wide open, prayed unashamedly to the one true God.

Now saints, we are living in a day when many traps are being set for us and there will be many more to come. The enemy will not be satisfied with “30 days.” If Daniel had relented, then another decree would come along more intense and longer in duration than the one before. It is not good enough for the enemy to see outward compliance. He will demand much more than that. He will demand that you bow down to him and acknowledge the lie as truth. Compromise leads to disaster. It is one step down a slippery path that at its end lies destruction. The two wonderful aspects of Daniel’s story was that he unashamedly, in the face of certain death, refused to deny God or bow down to the decrees of this world that demand we deny our God and His truth. The second wonderful part was the fact that God was with Daniel in the lions den. What was decreed for his destruction only strengthened Daniel in the end.

What is pressing upon you saint? What decree is the world demanding that you compromise your faith for? Do not do it. Like a paid blackmailer, it will not end there it will only get worse. Better to go down into the lions den and meet God there than than to please the world, your family, your job or your career, and stand alone. One is temporal and the other is eternal. If you cannot run with the footmen now without being wearied, how then shall you contend with the horses when the world is drowning in gross darkness? Stand upon the truth saints and do not be moved.

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Sin shall not have dominion over you.

Posted by appolus on December 27, 2019

Rom 6:14  For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.

The freedom to do what is right, towers above the prison and the chains of commandments. One is initiated by love, the other is enforced by the whip. Holiness comes from freedom and freedom comes from love . And this love inspires and draws us and compels us to honor and respect and obey our Father in heaven. His love is the very air that we breathe and the air before His throne is rarified air and if we cannot breathe this air then we die. The impetus for us to follow the commands that are written upon our heart is love. It is more powerful than the commands that were written upon tablets of stone. Those who would sin without conviction and use some kind of legal fiction (cheap grace) to excuse or justify their actions simply do not have the laws of God written upon their hearts. The grace of God is such a beautiful and dynamic and fundamental part of our relationship with the Lord. It is never a license to sin, God forbid. It is the very opposite for those who know Jesus. When we sin there is a separation between ourselves and the one that we love. We cry with David “restore unto me the joy of thy salvation.” The blood bought heart can never be at peace when there is any kind of distance between it and his or her Lord. Love compels us to humble ourselves, broken and contrite, and come before our Lord in confession so that we may once again walk in the beauty and closeness of His presence and holiness.

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An opportunity for joy

Posted by appolus on December 16, 2019

James 1:2-4 Dear brothers and sisters,[a] when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.

Trials and tribulations will ultimately bring out the best in genuine Christians and the worse in the religious man. The harder the circumstances get for the genuine Christian, the more he is forced to his knees and driven deeper into the heart of the Father. He is humbled and contrite as he understands how weak he is and how much flesh he still has. Ultimately the results of this is more love, more peace, more forgiveness and more understanding. The harder the circumstances become for the religious man, the more bitter he becomes. He has no joy or peace. He will not forgive his enemies and his hatred for those he perceives to have caused his sufferings increases dramatically. So, the trial and the deep valley is death to one and life to another. The flesh dies and the spirit rises.

The genuine saint faces the same danger as the one who has never known Jesus if he reacts in the same manner as that one. The difference will be their love for the word of God and their love for God Himself. A saint is motivated by His love for God and his passion for the truth that is written, not only in the Word but upon his heart. It is the driving force of his life, his very heartbeat, the essence of who he is. Nothing else matters when sin disturbs this, it has to be put right for the alternative is distance between him and the one that he loves. When you find yourself in the midst of troubles of any kind dear brother and sister, resist the flesh’s desire to run into a dark corner and react as the world reacts. Do the opposite of the flesh, draw near to God and He will draw near to you and you will grow in the Lord and in the power of His might.

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Has thou considered.

Posted by appolus on December 11, 2019

Job 1:8  And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job

Can you even begin to imagine brothers and sisters, the Lord saying “Have you considered my servant…..” fill in the blank with your own name. What glory and honor that the Lord of all creation would testify of His servant before the throne-room of heaven, before the heavenly hosts. God is well confident in his servant. The accuser on the other hand has nothing at all to accuse Job of therefore he turns to the motivations of the heart of Job. And so unfolds the story of humanity. The Lord knows you, He knows you through and through. The same enemy of Job is the enemy of your soul. And the same accusation that he made against Job he makes against you. In the eternal spiritual courtroom, God stands accused by Satan that no one actually loves Him, they only follow Him for what they can get from Him. This is Satan acting according to his character, nasty and vindictive, the father of lies distorted with hatred for God and for His children.

You, dear saint, are a witness in this case. You are called to testify. Your testimony is your life in God and the motivations of your heart. Every moment that you praise Him, give thanks to Him, rejoice in Him, glory in His majesty, you continue to make the case against Satan. You are part of the truth and he is all of the lie. Truth is victorious over lies. Your life is a testimony to love. God’s love for you and your love in return. This glorifies God, this is your primary purpose here on earth. And the darker your circumstances, the greater more powerful the witness. To glory in God and to give thanks to Him in the midst of trials and tribulations is your greatest contribution to the reality of your relationship with God. So brothers and sisters, never stop thanking God, no matter your circumstances. You may not think that no one knows about your situation. God knows, the heavenly hosts knows and the fallen angels know. They know and they watch. This is why the promises are made to those who overcome and endure till the end. For love endures. It overcomes all obstacles and it even willingly dies for the object of its love. This is the testimony of our Lord Jesus Christ, we have been called to follow Him.

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In times of trouble

Posted by appolus on December 9, 2019

Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.

How many of us are living our lives taken up with our immediate concerns? And as we do, life just continues to pass us by. We are so busy with the concerns of life, one after another, day after day, that life is literally passing us by. The glory and the splendor of life itself, the majesty of Gods creation all around us, yet all missed as the minutia of so much of our lives dominates everything. There is a tyranny involved here. There is a slavery involved. The Lord Himself told us to ” seek ye first the Kingdom of God,” in our lives and all those other things shall be added to us. The Kingdom of God is a living reality and it is ever-present.

The antidote to the tyranny of time is the freedom that is found in His presence right here in the present. It has to be sought out and there is a diligence in the seeking but there is also a reward in the finding. To seek we have to suspend. Suspend what? The worries and the concerns of life must be put to rest. Just seeking God every day is a huge step away from the tyranny of this world brothers and sisters. When we leave the concerns of this world behind by faith, then we begin the journey into the heart of God. We begin to see His beauty that is all around us, we begin to be aware of His grandeur. And then suddenly He is there. No one can predict it and no one can formulate it for it can never be bottled and sold.

His very presence is our ever-present help. Our seeking His Kingdom and His presence is the narrow path in the journey of life as we make our way from the valley’s of this world to the mountains of His Kingdom. Once you establish yourself on this path, you will jealously guard against all distractions. Walking the path will become your way of life, your very purpose for living. It will turn it all around. You will be living in and for the eternal purposes you were called for. We have to eat and we have to drink but the primary reason for being alive is life, eternal life in Christ and the Kingdom life of God that is found in the ever-present God. Take a moment, reflect upon your routine then deliberately set it aside. For in setting it aside you are seeking first the Kingdom of God. This is where you will find your refuge, your strength and your very present help in in times of trouble. Let the dominant routine of your life be this-seeking His face.

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Cast down but not destroyed.

Posted by appolus on December 6, 2019

2Co 4:9  Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed; 

Oftentimes we find ourselves troubled on every side. Many times we are perplexed. Many of us have been persecuted, perhaps not in the sense of living in a hostile country, but maybe within our own families. We have been thrown down and trampled on . Often dying it seems by many our many troubles. All of these things and more are the things that would destroy most, but in you they have caused the life of Christ to spring up from the darkness of your situations. An abundance of grace has been poured out upon your life that speaks to the glory of God and the love of the Father for His children.

When we have been troubled on every side we can testify that we have been rescued from distress. When we have been weighed down with the perplexities of life, the Lord Himself pulls us up from the valleys of despair.In the midst of our persecutions and feelings of isolation we have discovered that we are not alone. When we have been thrown down and trampled on the Lord Himself has saved us from being destroyed.

In all of these things we do not faint, we rise up by the power of the Holy Spirit. The outer man may be in the process of perishing but our inner man is renewed daily by the glory of God and the amazement of a dying world. The world sees that out the darkness of our situations that God Himself has commanded light to shine forth. You may not be able to fully articulate the Roman road to salvation but the world does see that out of you, out of your many trials, your sorrows, your afflictions and your infirmities, there shines forth the light of Christ Himself. Be encouraged saints, you are a mighty witness for Christ. Perhaps the world will never know your story, but the Lord knows and the mouths of the principalities and powers are closed by the testimony of God in you, your hope and your glory.

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