THE OFFENDED CARD

 

How can the world know the love of God, if no one tells them?  How can the unsaved reach the shores of forgiveness if no one shares the Gospel message?  How can the struggling find stability when the air waves are void of Truth?  How can the suffering experience the “Balm of Gilead” if no one is offering the application?  How can the afflicted receive healing if no one is willing to pray with them?

Why is the neo-Christian so concerned with exposing the vices of our Country while being timid in presenting the Truth of God’s Word?  Why are Christians so concerned with Political influences on the Church and not discerning enough to influence our Government with the Truth?  Why is the Church bold to condemn secular lifestyles and timid to display Christian lifestyles?

Have you ever wondered how those whose life styles are off the “normal grid” promote their agendas?  When a person is confronted with words or actions that do not agree with their lifestyle, they use the “offended” card.  It has come to the point that they look for opportunities to promote their lifestyle by bringing attention to those that are opposed to them.  To help present their “misunderstood” actions, the media cranks up the propaganda machine in an attempt to champion their cause.  When are we going to understand that it is not the politicians with the power, but the Media that swings the pendulum of public opinion!  Sadly, some Christians have joined the propaganda parade by quoting the media more than the Scripture!  When will the Believer realize that much of the Media news is geared to sensationalize and promote special interest groups?  The use of exaggerated statistics has influenced many people.  The Media’s agenda is to influence people.  Much of public opinion is molded by the relentless presentation of biased reporting.

Christians must come out of their “spiritual closets” and promote the Truths of God’s Word.  Instead of being swayed by secular opinions, let the Believers stand as representatives of the Kingdom of God.  God has never been on a losing side and He never will.  If God be for us, who can be against us?  The United States Supreme Court can make its decisions, but it is God’s Court that will rule.  People are afraid to speak up for fear that they will offend someone.  Some Christians are so timid to share the Truth that they would rather pray their way out of personal responsibility and let someone else share the message.  In the mean time, they surround themselves with other timid Christians, and play church once a week.  When will Believers realize that people are only a heartbeat away from eternity?  Where they spend that eternity will be decided in the here and now.  We must step up to the “pitcher’s mound” and deliver the Truth.  We are so concerned about not offending someone that we fail to realize that we offend them by not sharing the Truth.  Instead of looking for the “escape clause” (a.k.a. the Rapture) in our Christian contract, let us share the Gospel with a rapturous excitement!

 

911 Prayers

 

911 prayers are probably the most offered petitions in Christian circles today.  These prayers exhibit an urgency that if something does not happen soon, all will be lost.  The parameters of these 911 prayers include everything from physical and mental healing, to financial, materialistic, and societal acceptance.  There are usually time restraints with these pleas for help, and it is Satan who keeps the petitioners aware of the fleeting hours!  When the situation we are presenting is personal, the greater the intensity of presentation.  To illustrate the seriousness of our request, we revert to fasting and making promises that are out of the realm of reason.  We promise to give up something of self importance if God will only grant our 911 prayer.  The farther we are from direct personal needs, the less will be our intensity.  We pray for the salvation of someone, but we fail to realize that those types of prayers will hold the possibility that God might choose us to be the instrument of their salvation!

There are some Christians that use the 911 prayers for situations they could have handled themselves if they had only lined up their lives with the Word of God.  We must learn to use the spiritual and mental authority that God has given us when faced with negative situations in our lives.  There is a place for 911 prayers, but many needs can be met with the resources in God’s Word.  When we are faced with a situation for which we simply cannot see the solution, it is the time to use the 911 prayer!  Always remember that God knows what we are going through.  We have a contract with Him that He will never leave or forsake us.  When we are facing a problem, He is there with us!  Image in the middle of a difficult situation we excuse ourselves from the Lord and say, “I have to make a 911 prayer!”  When those difficult times arise, take His hand and walk through the situation.  If you feel weak and the mind has overwhelmed the spirit, then it is time to use the 911 prayer.  When negativity smothers one’s attitude, then it is time to use the 911 prayer.  When unbelief overshadows faith, then it is time to use the 911 prayer.  When you walk away from His presence, then it is time to use the 911 prayer.  When you doubt His Word, then it is time to use the 911 prayer.

911 prayers are not meant for an easy way out, but a request for help in facing trials.  These types of prayer are for assistance in our struggles.  God is not a “genie” who is there for granting our every wish, but a loving God who will guide us through the difficult times.  When we cry out with our “emergencies” we may be saying we understand what the Word says, but we just need to grasp the reality of that hope.  Let us never be too proud to use our 911 prayer when we just can’t seem to get our mind in sync with our spirit.

We must walk by faith in the sight of the problem.  We must believe in His Word, no matter what the circumstances.  We must realize we have the mind of Christ and not a carnal mind.  We must see things as they can be and not as they are.  We must walk in the light of His Word and not run in the uncertainty of darkness.  We must trust Him and not rely on horizontal situations.  If we can’t come to the reality of the victory, then it is time to implement the 911 prayer!

 

 

 

 

THE MISSED PRAYER

 

Prayer has always been an integral part of the Christian life style.  Prayer is simply communication between man and God.  The direction of that endeavor is determined by the motivation of the mind and spirit.  Prayers take the form of interceding in the lives of others as well as promoting one’s own agenda.  The majority of Believers’ prayers are keyed to achieving deliverance from difficult situations.  They are all centered on receiving a response that will bring relief or restoration.

There is one area of directed prayer that many Believers miss, and that is the area of praying for those who already have a secure foundation and are established in their Faith.  We take for granted that there is no need to pray for those who seemingly have no problems in their lives.  What we are doing is leaving them vulnerable to “sneak attacks” from the enemy.  Satan waits patiently as Christians walk in the confidence of their committed lives.  He knows that if there is a lull in their spiritual walk, they will be vulnerable to deception and redirection.

Paul recognized the importance of praying not only for the struggling saints, but also for those well advanced on their spiritual journey.  When Paul heard of the “love in the Spirit” of those in Colosse, he prayed that they might “… be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding.” (Colossians 1:9)  He knew their faith in Jesus and their love for all the saints and, realizing the road they would travel, prayed for their continual spiritual growth.  In fact, many of his letters were inundated with that kind of “forward prayer.”

I wonder how many saints pray for those of spiritual maturity.  I wonder how many pray for their pastor and family, as well as other spiritual leaders.  We must never take for granted that just because someone is of a spiritual stature, they are immune from the plethora of spiritual and fleshly attacks.  I am convinced that many of the pastors who have fallen strayed due to a lack of prayers directed to God on their behalf.  I am convinced that many Believers, who were once strong in the Lord, fell away due to no prayers being offered on their behalf.  I am convinced that strong marriages have ended in divorce due to the lack of prayers when things were going well.

During the so called influenza season, many healthy people are urged to take flu shots to help ward off infectious diseases.  During the Believers growth and maturity, should we not surround one another with prayer?  When Satan tempted Jesus in the Battle of the Wilderness, Jesus defended Himself with the Word of God.  When the battle was over the Bible says that Satan left Him for a season. (Luke 4:13)  I believe it is the same way today.  We start out on our spiritual journey which leads us into a life of victory and maturity, but it does not stop there.  We never reach our goal until we “fall asleep” and awake in His presence.  Until that reality, we are vulnerable to Satan’s attacks.  The problem is we fail to understand this and leave our brothers and sisters susceptible to temptations they never thought possible.

When we pray, let us understand that it is not always for deliverance, but it is also for prevention.  We must not let our brothers and sisters go into uncharted waters without being prepared.  Let us surround them with a “life-jacket” of our prayers.

 

THE ANOINTING

 

How does one hear the Word of God on Sunday and then walk out of the place of worship unchanged?  If the Bible is the Word of God, why does our home copy remain unopened the majority of the time?  How is it possible to not be affected by the content of God’s Word?  For years I have seen preaching have little or no affect on so many.  I have seen changed lives, but I have also seen indifference to His Word.

Anyone can learn a trade by reading reference materials or attending an educational facility.  Anyone can acquire knowledge of a certain subject by comprehending the intent of the material.  Anyone can study the Bible and learn how to promote its content.  One does not have to be a Believer to present Biblical teaching!  Just by placing a label before one’s name does not make one a messenger of God.  If the presenter of God’s Word has only an intellectual understanding of the Scripture, the seed of the Word will have little chance to germinate into a life changing experience or fruitful display to the hearer.  (That is not to say the Word is only made effective by the orator, but when the presenter of the Word is anointed, the Word will bypass the mental screening of the hearer, and go directly into his spirit.)

One of the terms that have been lost over the years is the word ANOINTING.  It is not something one learns or acquires by a conscious effort, rather it is a supernatural endowment initiated by God.  Jesus’ inaugural message in the Synagogue of Nazareth stated it so plainly, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He hath anointed me to preach…” (Luke 4:18)  The success of Jesus’ ministry was not only because He was the Son of God, but because of the anointing He received from God.  When Jesus was baptized and the Holy Spirit came upon Him, God said, “…This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” (Matthew 3:17)  When one is anointed by God, the Word becomes “…sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit…” (Hebrews 4:12)  As the Word leaves the lips of the anointed, it travels into the heart of the hearer.  Without the anointing, the Word of God is limited to human understanding.  With the anointing, the Word of God transforms the heart and minds of the recipients.  The resistance factor of the recipient is a non-issue.

Where there is no anointing, there is a danger of “Christian cults.”  This constitutes misrepresenting Biblical truth.  It is developing a faith based on receiving instead of giving.  It is keyed to the emotional and sense orientated.  We find teachings of financial prosperity overshadowing spiritual growth.  Personal prophesy by self-appointed prophets has grieved the Holy Spirit.  Laughing and being “slain” in the spirit is sought after more than sharing one’s faith.  Spiritual drunkenness has been supported by misunderstanding Acts 2:13.  “Grave sucking” has been presented as a way to receive an anointing.

The world sees the “Christian cults” and judges it as the Church.  The mass media attacks Believers based on the evidence that is displayed by carnal messengers and their followers.  When the Church becomes like the world, its uniqueness is lost and its identity comes through works instead of faith.  God’s church needs to be guided by the Holy Spirit, not by the human spirit.  I am not looking for some new and exciting extra-biblical experience, for I have already been made a new creature in Christ and, with the joy of the Lord within me, I desire nothing more than to discover the truths in God’s word.

 

OUR COUNTRY AND CHURCH

 

There have been some shocking changes in our Country, especially over the past few years. To those of maturing years, it has left them in a state of bewilderment and confusion.  Political decisions have carried much of our Country into schisms and camps of opinionated philosophies.  Instead of being a Country with common goals and objectives, we have become a melting pot of concoctions that has defined a Nation destined to self ideologies. The United States is a land of equal opportunities, but not all opportunities have the equal goal of bettering our society.  Freedom without morals and ethics becomes grounds for a godless society.  Whenever a country forgets its heritage and ignores its roots, it is on its way to extinction.  The United States is only an infant compared to civilizations that have been around for multi-centuries, yet we display arrogance and self-promoted pride that we are the living example of the perfect society.  In spite of the status and the direction our Country is taking, I still love America and would not want to live anywhere else in the world, but to see what is happening to Her is heart wrenching.

It is not only the leaks in the Constitutional foundation of the United States that trouble me, but it is also the cracks in the Biblical foundation of the Church.  It seems the Church is paralleling the direction of our Country.  The Bible is being tampered with to make it more relevant to an every changing society.  Christians are challenging the intent of the Scripture.  They believe our “founding fathers” (Biblical authors) intended to convey a different message than what has been thought for years.  The acceptance of same sex “marriages” has and is being endorsed by a number of main line denominations.  One denomination, by majority vote in their annual meeting, declared that same gender “marriage” ceremonies could be conducted in the church.  Another denomination voted to leave it up individual pastors to determine whether or not to join same sex individuals in their church.

It is not a question of denying a persons identity or personal freedom to chose their own direction, but the issue is do they have the right to make the Word of God irrelevant by their own actions?  What it comes down to is our understanding of the Bible.  Is it the Word of God or not?  God meant what He said and said what He meant.  There is no wiggle room for opinionating and redefining what He said, when through the Holy Spirit men wrote as instruments at God’s direction. (II Peter 1:21)

If a denomination chooses to disregard its Biblical foundation, it needs to take the name “church” from its identity.  The founding fathers of certain denominational churches would “roll over in their graves” if they saw what was happening to the church which God directed them to start.  Denominationalism is not a divergence from the unification of the Body of Christ, but each has a direction that will compliment each other in a common goal. (I Corinthians 12:5)  Some bring the lost into the fold.  Some nurture them in the basics of the faith.  Some reach out to the struggling, while others establish personal foundations.  Some are world-wide mission orientated, while another is community orientated.  All in all, they have the same objective: to bring glory and honor to God, and that is being unified together in Christ. We are one in Christ, but when part of the church is acting more like the world and questions God’s intended Word, then only the remnant will survive.  The United States and the Church are on a dangerous course.  When you take God out of the country and the Bible out of the Church, you have a nation moving toward extinction and a church that loses its identity as the Body of Christ.  “EVEN SO, COME, LORD JESUS” (Revelation 22:20)

 

The church versus the Church Part 2

 

God’s intent, based solely on Biblical context, was to restore His chosen people to a place of prominence in the world.  But due to their rebellion, the way to kingdom reality was blocked by the hardening of their hearts.  The Jews wanted a status position where they become the conquerors instead of the conquered.  As one studies the Scripture, one can readily see the intent of Kingdom building in God’s plan, but due to the sinfulness of His people, God had to first deal with their rebellious heart.  Zachariah’s prophesy was a basic continuation of Old Testament prophesies that Israel would be delivered from their physical enemies.  When that was accomplished, the Jews would be able to serve Him without fear.  They would be before God in “…holiness and righteousness,” all the days of their life. (Luke 1:67-75)  That was God’s plan, but due to the sinfulness of His people, their physical deliverance would not be achieved until their hearts were changed.  To bring about that change, Jesus would come as a Savior, not a physical deliverer.  For the Jewish people to understand what the ministry of the Messiah would be, a forerunner would come to change the people’s concept of why the Messiah was coming.  Instead of looking for a physical deliverance, they needed to see the importance of a changed heart.  John the Baptizer would present Jesus as the “lamb of God” who would take away their sins. (John 1:29)  John was stressing the importance of changing their preconceived notions by way of repentance.

The Apostle Paul, understanding the foundation of the Christian faith, made a proclamation that the only thing that really mattered was, “… Jesus Christ and Him crucified.” (I Corinthians 2:2).  Whenever the Church loses sight of the Cross, its foundation will be in jeopardy.  Whenever the Church manipulates Scripture to promote an excitement transfusion, it has lost its power.  Whenever the Church proclaims financial prosperity while ignoring fiscal responsibility, it has misdirected the use of God’s money.  Whenever the Church stresses physical healing over spiritual healing, it has lost its vision.  Whenever the Church seeks signs and wonders instead of displaying Holiness, it has become a broken vessel.

The majority of agnostics and non-believers are witnessing the displays of the “people’s church”, rather than God’s Church.  The alarming thing is the actions of the people’s church are getting all the attention, while God’s Church experiences collateral damage. One of the problems that face the Church today is how it responds to the “rebellious church.”  If it fails to address false doctrines by not promoting Biblical truths, it will negatively answer Jesus question, “…nevertheless when the Son of man cometh, shall he find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:8)  The true Church will be defined by how it responds to its identity crisis.

The conduct of the people’s church invites ridicule.   It hurts to see God’s Church the recipient of ridicule because of unbiblical actions by those who claim to be Believers. The media, from the news conglomerates to the entertainment industry, are exposing the people’s church for what it is, but the tragedy is they think that it is God’s Church that they are exposing.  Believers are anticipating an external challenge to the Church, when we need to look within the Christian circle.  Satan realizes that the best way to derail the true Church is to build new tracks on which the people’s church will travel farther and farther away from God’s intent.

 

The church versus the Church, Part 1

 

There have always been itching ears and searching eyes that scan the spiritual horizon waiting for some sign that God will manifest Himself in a new and exciting way.  Every few years there is a resurgence of distorted Biblical truths that seem to bring a ray of hope to the floundering church.  I am reminded of the Biblical Jews that were waiting for the Messiah who would set them free from the bondage of oppression.  This would be done by setting up an earthly kingdom that was ruled by God Himself.  When the Jewish people saw their physical dilemmas, they reverted to the hope that someone would come who would lead them back to a place of prominence in their world.  To help the process along, the Pharisees begin promoting their own interpretation of the Law and Prophets.  Regulations and extra Biblical teachings were promoted to evidence that God was still in charge.  The problem was the Jewish people exchanged hope for a continuing mountain-valley experience.  Every new or expanded “truth” was met with excitement.  But soon it turned into disappointment and a searching for yet another movement that would excite them into hopeful expectations.

When the Messiah did come, they did not recognize Him.  They thought Jesus was a prophet or great teacher that would reintroduce the Jewish Kingdom.  As quickly as they were exposed to the Truth, the Truth was adjusted and altered to promote a physical manifestation rather than a spiritual deliverance.  The people craved miracles that would help them grasp the reality of God.  Jesus knew that the heart of man was desperately wicked and the only hope for God’s chosen people was circumcision of the heart. (Romans 2:29)  Jesus realized that His greatest mission would be the “religious” community.  The Jews responded to Jesus as a supplier of their physical needs, rather than the “lamb of God” which would restore them to a right standing with God.  Jesus’ ministry in the Synagogues was short lived, for His message conflicted with their traditions.  For three years, Jesus reached out with the Love of God to a people who were indifferent to the real Truth.  Wherever He went, the religious authorities followed with contradictory teachings that confused the people.  Finally, the “religionists” crucified Him!  It wasn’t until after Jesus’ ascension that the real truth of God’s love was revealed.  In that “upper room” the Holy Spirit fell upon the disciples, the unfiltered truth flooded their spirits, and the Church was born!

There is such a similarity today to the earthly ministry of Jesus.  Our religious institutions have developed communities of diversity.  The ability to recognize Biblical Truth has become a difficult task.  Doctrines of devils have disguised their way into the Church.  Laughing spirits have become a mockery unto the Lord.  Spiritual “drunkenness” has elevated the flesh into mocking displays of tainted truth.  The Church is eager to acknowledge sin in our country, but remains silent when it comes to sin in the Church.  When are we going to realize that as the Church goes, so goes our country!  When the Church fails to represent God, our country will represent Satan!  Believers must stop cultivating “Christian cults” and start planting and harvesting from the true seed of God’s Word.

There is a talk of a great revival coming, but it cannot become a reality while the counterfeit church is in session. God wants to visit His Church, but not until we turn the Church back to Him.

DO YOU KNOW WHAT YOU ARE ASKING?

 

We are all participants when it comes to prayer.  Our petitions are in the form of supplications, intercession, and requests.  If we are presumptuous enough, we “command” the Lord to fulfill the desires of our head, which we have mistaken for our heart.  Many of our prayers have time restraints.  Some people have an attitude that the Lord owes them something; after all, they are His children and He has a responsibility to supply all their needs (wants).  Not to digress from the purpose of this article, but I have a hard time familiarizing God to a structure that I believe shows dishonor and disrespect.  I have heard Believers call God their “Daddy” and Jesus their “Big Brother.”  Even though the concept is correct, He is much greater than any carnal labeling we can give Him.  Instead of bringing God down to our mental acceptance, let us learn to kneel in His presence with awe and respect, for He is “I AM.”  Jesus is our Savior and Lord; let us approach Him in humble adoration, for He is the Alpha and Omega.  To mentally humanize our relationship to the Triune God is to elevate ourselves to an almost equal status.  What follows is a dictate of wants, versus seeking what He wants.

We must ask ourselves how we fit into God’s purpose and plan for our lives.  When we realize what His objective is for us, we will better understand how to pray.  When we fail to grasp this truth, we will begin to act like a god and want God to endorse our agenda. Wrong teaching has influenced wrong actions.  We are not on this earth to determine our own direction, but to discover His direction for us.  Our prayers should center on His will, not on our will.  Know the Word and we will understand how to pray.  God gives us the desires of our heart, because He puts the desire there!  In the “Battle of Gethsemane” Jesus, as a man, realized that it was not a question of what He wanted, but what God wanted for Him.  Jesus requested for another way than the cross, but He quickly overruled that petition with “…nevertheless, not my will, but thine be done.” (Luke 22:42)

There are situations in life when we attempt to search for an escape clause or seek a road more traveled than the path we are on when, in reality, the Lord has us on that path for the fulfilling of His purpose.  It comes down to do we trust God?  James realized this truth by stressing the importance of knowing how to pray.  “If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.” (James 4:15)  Instead of seeking confirmation of our choices in life, let us desire what He desires.  Instead of bribing God with shallow promises like: “If He will heal me, I will do this and that for Him.”  Let us learn as Paul did, “…in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.” (Philippians 4:11)  Let God do His work in us as He leads us through the valleys and mountain tops, all with the objective of creating a person who will exhibit His Kingdom.

Zacharias and Elizabeth had prayed long and hard that they might have a child, but all seemed to be for naught.  Finally, long after Elizabeth had passed her child bearing years, their prayers were finally answered.  They would have a son that would be the forerunner of the Messiah. (Luke 1:11-17)  If their prayer had been answered in their timing, they would have missed having a son whom Jesus would later declare as the greatest “Prophet” ever. (Luke 7:28)  Don’t miss out on what God has for you by framing your prayers around what (and when) you want; rather, about what God wants for you!

 

INSIDE OUT

 

My Granddaughter is just starting and completing her teenage years; at least, that is the attitude and action that she displays.  During her “right of passage” she displays all the characteristics of a person under construction, while at the same time exhibiting a “green card” mentality which permits her a trial role in womanhood.

I have found a growing number of new Believers who work from the outer man to the inner man.  In other words, they adopt the outward displays of a Christian, with the hope that the inner man will grow accustomed to his life changing display.  They go to church, pray, read their Bible, change their vocabulary, dress modestly, abstain from worldly vices, and generally display what is expected of a new Christian.  These things are all staples of the Believers walk.  The problem is we have put the cart before the horse. It is more than mimicking the outward displays of other Christians.  It is the changing of the heart.  It is not copying the life style of other Believers.  It is becoming the person God wants you to become.  It is not the mixing of two natures.  It is the birthing of the very nature of God.  It is not fitting into a new way of living.  It is a new and living way.  It is not a revising of one’s thoughts and actions.  It is having the mind of Christ and following His actions.  It is not a temporal excitement.  It is joy unspeakable and full of glory that leads into His presence.  It is not mind over matter.  It is spirit that really matters.

One of the causes of lukewarmness and inconsistency in Believers is works that have overshadowed faith.  Some believe if they follow the typical Christian pattern they are “saved” and have a place in eternity with God.  Salvation is not through observances and displays, but through the heart.  Going to church does not makes a person a Christian any more than standing in a garage  make you a car.  Playing a role does not make you a Christian.  A changed heart through the blood of Jesus Christ makes us a new creature.  A changed heart renews our mind which leads to a transformed person.  Holiness dwarfs prosperity.  Peace overshadows anxiety.  Truth transcends reason.

How many people have had an altar experience that was a result of an emotional coaxing instead of a broken heart responding to the Holy Spirit’s invitation?  Jesus’ teaching of the Sower is a classical illustration of how some people respond to God’s Word.  Satan will stand between the Word and the hearer.  He will bring confusion to the hearer which limits his understanding.  He will cause persecution and tribulation to keep the individual from solidifying the Truth.  He will allow money to choke out the Truth.  These are illustrations of “emotional hearers” that make up so many churches today.  Jesus then illustrated what constitutes the true Believer.  It is the person who receives the Word, understands the Word and bears fruit.  The Word goes to the heart and then is displayed through actions that spread to others. (Matthew 13:18-23)

My Granddaughter will learn soon enough that the way to adulthood is not through conforming to peer pressures and “tribal” membership, but submitting to the Potter that will mold her into the adult He desires. (Jeremiah 8:6)  True Believers are made from the heart outward, not the head downward.

 

 

 

FULFILLING TOMORROWS’ YESTERDAYS

 

Empty todays are a result of unproductive yesterdays.  What we do in the here and now will determine our future challenges.  How we see our days will have a direct influence on our attitude.  What we do with our time reflects our past, present, and future.  When we allow our time to be occupied with meaningless activities, it is sure to have a negative affect on us.  How many of us wear our Believer’s label on the inside, instead of being a walking, talking example of Jesus Christ?  Some Believers look into their rearview mirror and see unfulfilled promises, which results in displaying a depressive attitude for the day.  The effect of that emotional display feeds into tomorrow’s inactivity.  When we are not fulfilling our todays, yesterdays become our judge and tomorrows our fears.

One of the areas that Believers are afraid to acknowledge is DEPRESSION.  This is one of the most debilitating words in the Christian vocabulary.  For a Believer to admit to other Christians that they are depressed is very rare.  If they dare to hint they might have a problem, the doorway to judgment is opened.  Why is it so many judge others when they have never walked in their shoes?  When the Christian court is in session, the verdict and punishment of the suffering saint only solidifies their depression.   I would never make a guess at the number of Believers who are affected by depression, but it is more widespread than anyone could imagine.

There is no shame in admitting depression.  In fact, the beginning of healing is expressing the truth.  To share horizontally is a step that will be difficult to take, for (sadly) one does not know whom to trust.  The best way to share is to start with the One who already knows what we are experiencing.  God sees those hurts and darkness that shrouds our being.  For God to work in our lives, He wants us to take the initiative.  When we come to Him, He is ready and able to start the process of dispelling depression.  God will not judge us, but love us and show us the road to recovery.  Depression comes from looking at our failures and seeing little or no hope.  Recovery comes from looking to the Author and Finisher of our faith.  When God fills our mental quicksand with the Rock of Ages, we can begin to see the light at the end of the “depression tunnel.”

Now the Believer needs to build upon his “Cornerstone.”  We need to rise up every morning and sing unto the Lord songs like, “This is the Day,” “Rise and Shine,” and “Praise Him, Praise Him.”  We need to tell Him how much we love Him.  We need to start our day in worship.  As we do, God will direct our way.  Simply put, we need to set our affection on Him.  Depression comes from separation; positive expression comes through fellowship with Him.

When we put things into perspective, our attitude will determine our altitude.  Let us fill our days with joy, so that our yesterday memories will be filled with happiness, and our tomorrows will be anticipated with excitement.  There are Believers who are afraid to admit they have depression.  Maybe they are waiting for someone to say, “I know what you are going through; let me tell you my story of victory.”