Tuesday, September 30, 2014

The Word of God

Sometimes the Word of God is all you need. A steady reminder that you are going to make it and all is well!

I have been making plans to dig deep into 1 & 2 Peter and in prep for that I have been reading the chapters for about a week!

Some of my favorites so far are these two scriptures:

1 Peter 5:8

Resist him (the devil), standing firm in the faith, knowing the family of believers all over the world are suffering the same trail you are.

1 Peter 5:9

And the God of all grace, who has given you eternal Glory through Christ, after you have suffered a little will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.


You can't despute the Word of God! Meditate on these wonderful scriptures today! Let them bring you comfort and safeness!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Stinking Thinking


Our thought life is very important to us as Christian people. In the world we live in we are bombarded with information daily that can influence our lives for the good or bad. Technology has really boomed within the past 25 years. The world wide web enables us in seconds to search out a subject we are interested in or see the latest trends on several social media sites. We watch television at home or on an airplane, in a car, train or any other mode of transportation. So what's my point? My point is our thinking can become stinking if we allow all this information to dwell within our mind. Proverbs 23:7 says For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he. Now all of our thoughts are not bad ones but I do think the enemy, satan, uses our busyness to keep our mind off of God and the plans he has for us. If your mind is cluttered, clogged, etc take the time  to clear it out. Pray, cry, laugh at yourself and do what the word of God says to do with thoughts that are not of him. Cast them down. Forgive yourself for what you do wrong and forgive others for what they have done to you. Stop the record player in your mind that plays a hurt over and over again by replacing it with a thought from Gods word. Here are a few I am affirmations to start you off.

I am - God's child for I am born again of the incorruptible seed of the word of God.  1 Peter 1:23.

I am - A new creature in Christ.  2 Corinthians 5:17.

I am - The apple of my Father's eye. Deuteronomy 32:10.

I am - God's workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works. Ephesians 2:10.

I hope and pray this devotion helps someone today. For you see all of us have to battle the thoughts that enter our mind.

This devotion was written by the heart of Pat James. You may comment at ptrc_maher@yahoo.com.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Stronger in the Broken Pieces

"He heals the broken hearted and binds up their wounds." Psalms 147:

It has been said that when a bone is broken there is a period of time when the broken area becomes stronger than the surrounding area during the latter part of the healing process. After this brief period of time the area where the brokenness occurred returns to normal.

The same as a broken heart. It becomes stronger for a while and then returns to normal.

"These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." John 16:17

We were healed at the Cross by the Precious Blood of Our Savior Jesus Christ. His Word is Truth. Receive in Jesus Name. Amen.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

The Note

THE NOTE 

My father passed away a little over two months ago. To everyone that has lost a loved one, the words... I'm sorry comes straight from my heart. It has been the most hurtful thing in my life. On July 18, 2014, I felt pure defeat. I wondered how in the world I could ever do life without this amazing man of God.

In the last hour of my fathers life, The Lord had great mercy and he went home to Heaven peacefully surrounded by his family, without a struggle. Even in my devastation I still could see the mighty hand of God! I know my father is ok and that is all that has ever mattered. He is at the feet of Jesus! 

It is a difficult time on the one's that are left behind here on earth. When days get REALLY tough I remind myself that I still am the apple of his eye. I still am his baby doll. I still am my daddy's little girl. I am and always will remain to be....
MY FATHER'S DAUGHTER!!!

I was comforted last week to find a note hidden in his Bible. I study out of my daddy's Bible often. I have searched it for notes. I have found many but I overlooked this precious treasure. It touched my soul :)

THE NOTE: 

YOU are a gift from God. I am honored to be your father. You're very precious to me, I love you so much. You have given me much joy, and I am proud of you. I want you to know this. - I bless you with healing from all the wounds that others have caused you. I bless you with love, joy, peace, understanding, understanding of the WORD. I bless you with spiritual influence, I bless you with prosperity, I bless you with SUCESS in whatever you do. You are my Daughter IN WHOM I AM WELL PLEASED. 
_________________________________

There has never been a question in my mind that he loved me. If I could count the times he said he loved me in my lifetime, it would be higher than any mountain! The love of Jesus flowed freely from my Father and he showed me how much he loved me every single day. 

Every person that has lost a loved one has a unique story to tell the world but as believers we all have the same God! Although our thoughts are not the same thoughts as God's and our plans may not be His plans, I am always encouraged by HIS GREAT LOVE!!!

Deuteronomy 31:8 (NIV)
The LORD himself goes before you; he will never leave you or forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. 

IN THE END ....GOD HAD THE FINAL SAY!!!

Blessings always ~
Pamela Britt Malone
pammiemalone - IG

Everlasting Love

Jer. 31:3 Long ago the Lord said to Israel:
“I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love.

With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself


I have the two sweetest kitty cats in the world. They can’t wait to get in my lap and snuggle every night when I get home. No matter what I do they love me. They love me even when I forget to fill the food bowl! When I go on vacation they are so happy when I return home. Last night when they both were wanting to sit in my lap at the same time I thought these boys love me SO much. Then The Lord said to me “This is how much I love you and ALL my people”. 

No matter how far we stray from Him He loves us. No matter how fast we run from Him, when we turn around He is there. He loves us with an everlasting love. A love like no other!!

So, if you have been running from Him know this, He loves you!!! All you have to do is turn back and He is there!!!!

This devotion was written from the heart of Beth Reed. I would love to hear from you.
FaceBook – Beth Reed
Twitter and Instagram – beffie221

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Trusting in the Lord

My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven & earth
Psalm 121:2
  
An old church hymnal comes to mind when I think about trusting in the Lord and it says the God on the mountain is still the God in the valley. We trust God and give him all praise when things are wonderful and we are high on the mountain, but that God is still the same and still worthy of the same praise when we are down in the valley. Being a child of God does not mean we will never face trials and tribulations on our journey it means that he will never leave us while we are facing these trials. The Lord will see us through if we stay steadfast in his word.

We all face different trials in our lives whether it is a financial burden, loss of a loved one, or just becoming weary with all that is happening in our world around us. The Lord is with us always with us during these times. To truly trust in the Lord is to rely on his word and to fully rely on him. To know that no matter what God is going to see you through this tribulation

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight
Proverbs 3 5:6

Without the Lord I know there is no way I could make it, trusting fully in him, praying and believing that God will provide. When times get too hard and you think there is just no other way to make it through the trial you are facing equip yourself with the best tool possible and that is the word of God. The world around us can be hard but with God all things are possible. Call upon God for all your worries and trust that he will provide. Through your trials a wonderful message can be brought to others that may not know Christ as their personal Lord and Savior. Fully trusting God through a trial may be what someone else needs to see to come to know God.

But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. And I was delivered from the lions mouth.
2 Timothy 4:17

Come near to God and he will come near to you
James 4:8

They will have no fear of bad news; their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the Lord
Psalm 112:7

Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this
Psalm 37:5

Remember through all things the God on the mountain is still the God in the valley. Trust in him!

This devotion was written from the heart of Sarah Akins.








You Love Him, Even Though You Haven't Seen Him

You love him even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. The reward for trusting him will be the salvation of your souls.

1 Peter 1:8-9

This is one of the most meaningful scriptures in the whole Bible to me. You love Him even though you have never seen Him. It brings peace to my soul when I read this scripture. Times are scary these days. And, I think they will probably get worse and worse. Things just don't make sense anymore. Evil is running rampant. Deception is upon this earth. 

We love Him though we have never seen Him.

Though we haven't seen Him, with our natural eye, we trust Him.

In these hard times. In these hard moments. 

We love Him and we trust Him.

Hang in there! Even if that's all you can accomplish today, that is all that is needed. In fact, doing that is saying a lot about you. It is saying a lot about the intention of your heart. You love Him even though you have never seen Him. Though we do not see Him now, we trust Him. And we get an reward for all this trusting we are doing! Especially in these last days! The salvation of our souls.

Have a great day! Thanks for reading! Be intentional today with your Bible Study! Memorize this scripture and get it deep in your heart!

Mary Catherine Sellers


Monday, September 22, 2014

Offering

One of the most familiar scriptures to people today is John 3:16 which says (Jesus speaking) For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. So much to learn in this one verse about God and how we need to respond to him.

God gave to us so much when he gave Jesus to the world so he could become the perfect sacrifice for our sins. He became a perfect offering without blemish for us. What love!! Jesus suffered, died, and was buried, to be miraculously raised up from the dead by God. He then ascended into heaven after forty days of walking with his disciples on earth. He is alive right now in a physical body sitting on the right hand of the Father. How awesome! But God was not done yet with his redemption plan.
The next phase of his plan was to send to us the Holy Spirit of God which he did at Pentacost. Acts chapter 2. 

Now let's go back to John 3:16. The second half of the verse states that whosever believes in Jesus will never perish but they will have eternal life. Are you a whosoever? Have you accepted Gods perfect sacrifice Jesus Christ as your Lord? If so, have you laid down your own life for him so you can become a living sacrifice for his service? Should we as Christian people do any less? 

Romans 12:2 says I beseech you therefore brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

Respond to Gods love today by making Jesus  The Lord of your life, which means to give him all of you. The good, the bad , and the ugly! Lay it down. Let him carry your load. His yolk is easy and his burden is light! 

This devotion was written by the heart of Pat James. You may comment and I hope you will at ptrc_maher@yahoo.com. God bless!






Sunday, September 21, 2014

The Sweet Spot



"My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the Rock and firm Strength of my heart and my Portion forever." Psalm 73:26 AMP

It was her time "at bat". My Niece Gabrielle A. had stepped up to the plate against an opposing team and the teams Coach she was up against called a "time out". The coach and the team approached the pitchers mound. They knew a strong hitter was at bat and they wanted her out.

The devil calls a time out to confer with his demons when we are "at bat" for the Kingdom of God. We are a team and we work together to give God Glory in each one of our individual lives. Satan will work hard to hinder an individual in the specific area a person has his/her gifts or talents...and he knows our weaknesses and will do his best to exploit them and "strike us out".

Solution: practice, practice, practice.

Bad food, bad relationships, bad attitudes, negative thinking patterns. Keep pushing these away until when you get thrown that fast ball at your weak spot in attempt to strike you out you can knock it out of the park and take your bases- and the bases are loaded.

She didn't just start out being the teams strongest hitter. Gabrielle had worked for years practicing and improving her swing and listening to her coach to get where she is and believe you me when you are at that point in your Spiritual life the devil is going to call a time out for a conference when you get your time at bat.
So practice, practice, practice, the areas where you are weak. Let's put some more numbers on the board for Christ.

Everyone's watching...



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So practice, practice, practice, the areas where you are weak. Let's put some more numbers on the board for Christ.

Everyone's watching...

Thursday, September 18, 2014

At the County Fair

AT THE COUNTY FAIR

2 Timothy 3:13 (ISV) 
But evil people and impostors will go from bad to worse as they deceive others and are themselves deceived. 

For the past three years my church has parked cars for the Jasper Jaycees at the county fair. Pastor Timothy said if you want to know what real people are like....come and help park cars!!! It is true! Nice people and not so nice people. Fancy cars and some cars that I literally pray they will make it home and everything in-between. It is the fairgrounds and everyone that enters those gates is anxious to get parked and get inside!!!

As a child I remember the fair as chilly nights, free concerts and out of this world EXTRA LARGE corn dogs! In honor of my happy childhood memories each September I wipe the sweat from my face and head into the fair in search of finding the colorful trailer that will sell me one! 

The word alluring came to my mind this year as I braved the crowds and entered! The Fair is bright, beautiful and a thrilling place to be! Fast rides, the house of glass, HUGH stuffed animals that people are hoping to win and wonderful smells of nearly everything fried! People seem happy and carefree when they step inside the fair :)  

It was getting late and the last night of parking cars. The only light I had was my small flashlight and the moon. It was big and beautiful. Almost a full moon that Saturday night. It started lightening deep in the black sky and it appeared that a thunderstorm might be forming. The clouds moved in quickly and completely covered the entire moon. I was reminded by The Lord that even though I could no longer see the moon through the clouds, it was still there!

Alluring things are everywhere we turn in this evil world but they will only make us happy for short time! The only person that will ever fill a void in  anyone's life is JESUS CHRIST! Don't get caught up with people that will take you further than you want to go on the fast rides of life! You might get stuck in the glass house and have trouble escaping! The old saying ...you are who you hang around ...is absolutely true!!! Sometimes in life we find ourselves so deep hanging around the wrong crowd that we are easily deceived. You might not be able to see The Lord clearly but HE IS STILL THERE! Stop waiting around "thinking" someday I will change and win the prize! Jesus is waiting for you TODAY! Tomorrow might be too late! 
Bad friends are like greasy comfort foods. If allowed they will stick to you and they are hard to shake off!  

PEOPLE COME AND GO BUT THE LORD, IF CHOSEN, WILL BE WITH YOU FOR AN ETERNITY!!!!

Many Blessings to you always ~ Pamela Britt Malone
pammiemalone IG

Kyle's Mom

Today I sat with tears streaming down my face listening to a mother tell the story of her son. The story of a son she was about to lay to rest. The story of a son that went off to war and returned a changed person. As she began to speak I was asking myself "How can she do this?" But as she spoke The Lord answered my question: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:13 NKJV) It is HE who gave her the strengh and the words to do what to me seemed impossible!

From this day forward whenever I feel like I can't do something I'll remember what The Lord did for Kyle's mom today. How He gave her the strength to stand before a room full of people and share with them her son's story! I will know that the same God that did that for Kyle's mom will do that for me. AND He will do it for you!! 

This devotion was written from the heart of Beth Reed. Kyle is my cousin who gave his life for his country. I ask that you pray for continued strength for Kyle's mom, dad and brother. Pray also for the many men and women who give of themselves everyday to keep our country safe. Pray for the families of those that give the ultimate sacrifice.  Pray that we as a nation will make sure they are never forgotten and always taken care of. 

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Joy Comes in the Morning

Grief can be a powerful thing and if we aren't careful can bring us down and allow the devil to take hold. I have seen grief make people question God, become bitter, and eventually turn their back to what they had once known. God does not want this kind of pain for us. It is in times like these that God wants us to draw closer than ever to him.

Tears will happen and that is ok, but do not let grief steal your joy. Don't let grief take a strong hold over your life. Cast all your grief and sorrow away. Turn to God and he will comfort you. "In my distress I cried unto the Lord, and he heard me. (‭Psalms‬ ‭120‬:‭1‬ KJV)"

"The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. (‭Psalm‬ ‭34‬:‭18‬ NIV)"  Isn't that comforting to know that God is always with us? He is close to the broken hearted. When we have times when we feel grief and sorrow hold on to the fact that these times will not last. This too shall pass.
"I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. (‭Romans‬ ‭8‬:‭18‬ NIV)"

Take comfort in knowing that Joy will come again. No matter what your grieving God can fill that void and take away your pain. We all feel sadness and pain at times and it's at those times we can find great comfort in The Lord.
"For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. (‭Psalms‬ ‭30‬:‭5‬ KJV)"

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Thank you for taking the time to read this devotion from the heart of Sarah Akins

Strengthen Our Inner Being

Hello. It's Tuesday. I am not sure what you might be battling today, but if you are a Christian and living in this world, I am sure it is something. Hang in there.

Ephesians 3:16 NIV

I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being.

Ephesians 3: 17-19 NLT

So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

It's ok you are going to make it! God will strengthen you. He will give you power through His spirit. He will strengthen your inner being.

Doesn't that just sound amazing. God will strengthen my inner being with His powerful spirit. Yes please.

This is my prayer for you today. Let's spread God's love and pray this over our families today. Over our children. Over our friends. Over our churches.

Strengthen our inner being God!


Monday, September 15, 2014

You Can't Dance With The Devil and Lead

 "Enter through the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and spacious and broad is the way that leads away to destruction, and many are those who are entering through it." Matthew 7:13 AMP

Life is about choices.

"...choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, ..." Joshua 24:15

"...narrow (contracted by pressure) and the way is straightened and compressed that leads away to life, and few are those who find it." Matthew 7:14

There is hope.

"Many evils confront the (consistently) righteous, but The Lord delivers him out of them all." Psalms 34:19

Check the sky. There may be life preservers flying at you from many different directions.

Grab... and don't let go.



Sunday, September 14, 2014

Follow the Money Trail


Follow The Money Trail

"Many waters cannot quench love, neither can floods drown it. If a man would offer all the goods of his house for love, he would be utterly scorned and despised." Song of Solomon 8:7

You spend money on what you love. Follow the money trail to see what someone really loves. Is it you?

In Christ,
Cheryl Patton

Friday, September 12, 2014

I AIN'T BECAUSE I THINK I CAN'T!!!

Phillipians 4:13 (NKV)
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

As students all over America are settling back into a routine of attending school, the words I ain't and I can't are NOT the words any good teacher would ever want to hear from their students. Back in the day, as I walked down the halls of Vestavia Hills High School those were the only words I lived by.

Maybe I lived by those words because I felt I was terribly ugly. Yet as I look back at old pictures, I now can see beauty.

Maybe I lived by those words because I felt like I would never be good enough to make the team. Yet as I look back, I took dance my entire life. I had the skills.

Maybe I lived by those words because I never felt smart enough. Yet as remember clearly, I won the poetry contest for the entire school. Unfortunately, no one ever knew who wrote the winning poem because I didn't have the confidence to sign my name.

Maybe I lived by those words because I felt my only acceptance would be in hanging around the drug crowd. Yet as I look back in time, I had never even tried a cigarette.

I hope that Christian teachers all over the world know the positive influence they have on their students lives. Mine was Mrs. Taylor. I remember her as being joyful. She was an English teacher and the sponsor of the high school Christian club.

As the long day ended and the school bell rang, Mrs. Taylor's  words echoed loud in my ears! She ask me to stay after class! When everyone exited the classroom Mrs. Taylor ask me a simple question that would impact my life forever. "What were you thinking" she asked. My heart was beating out of my chest. My lips began to quiver as my eyes began to fill with tears. I knew I was headed for the principals office which meant a phone call to my parents! I blurted out... "I haven't taken any drugs!" She then replied "I know, that is my point. You are better than all of this and deep down  inside you know it."

TEACHERS: You have a great calling from God upon your life. One kind word and a caring heart can change a life forever. I came from a wonderful family but when I moved from one state to the other I lost the ability to discern the makings of good friends. My prayer is that you will be a Mrs. Taylor in each of your students lives .

STUDENTS: The popular bible verse of Phillipians 4:13 has been tried and is true! God has already placed Christians in your life but you are the one that must be willing to reach out or they will never know you need help. DON'T LISTEN TO THE LIES OF the devil! The only words you should be living by is ...I WILL because I know I CAN do ALL things through CHRIST :)))

Many blessings to you always ~
Pamela Britt Malone
@pammiemalone IG

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Blessed is The One That Believes

Luke 1:45 Blessed is she who believed, for there will be a fulfillment of those things which were told her from the Lord.”

Although these words were spoken to Mary, Mother of Jesus by Elizabeth during  a time when Mary had gone to visit Elizabeth and Zacharias they should ring true to us today. Just imagine how confused Mary must have been when the angel told her that she would be the mother of the Messiah. Even in her confusion Mary said “Let it be to me according to your word.” (V.38) Elizabeth was telling Mary that because she had believed what The Lord was telling her she would be blessed. What a lesson we can learn. No matter what our confusing situation may be do we always believe The Word of The Lord? Do we look around and when we see nothing happening with our physical eyes do we begin to doubt?

It is easy to believe for a day or a week but what about when you are waiting months and years for a promise to be fulfilled? That is when we must continue to believe!! Have faith!! Stand!! When we truly know that The Lord has made us a promise or spoken a word to us about our life, remember that we will see the fulfillment and be blessed just as Mary was if we believe!!!

I have a promise, a word for my life so today I am reminding myself to BELIEVE. Have FAITH. STAND on that word. I pray that you will do the same.

This devotion was written from the heart of Beth Reed. I would love to hear your comments.
FaceBook: Beth Reed
Twitter & Instagram: Beth Reed


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Living in a Rushed World

Lately I have been seeing verses and devotions about living in a rushed world. I look around me and whether it be a devotion shared on social media, a verse in the bible that shouts at me, or a song on the radio it all has been pointing to the same thing. Slow down. Do not rush and become overwhelmed in this overwhelming world. 
It seems like we are always rushing just trying to survive. I know I have said the quote before “we are just trying to survive!” Now some may not openly admit to saying this we have all been there before. Rushing to work, rushing kids to school, trying to make it to the weekend, our society is always in a mad rush. My dad always used to say we live in a microwave society we want something and we wanted it ten minutes ago. He was so true. 
As I was rushing to work Monday morning I was listening to the radio and a Casting Crowns song came on. The words just really hit me. It said we aren’t meant to just survive we are meant to thrive. I have really been thinking a lot about that. God doesn’t intend on us to just merely survive the chaos of our day to day activities he wants us to thrive.
I began to really think hard about this and really let it sink in. As we are in this mad dash what all are we missing? How many times have I missed out on being a blessing to someone else by rushing by? How many times have I missed receiving a blessing because I was rushing through too busy to stop? Am I really taking the time to stop and take in all God’s glory around me?
So many times I think we are so caught up on the next big thing we are missing our lives happening at this very moment. The moment that we could really be working for God and thriving instead of letting it pass us by. 
We see so many people so weary in the world. God tells us in Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Go to God and he will give you rest in this restless world. When you feel so rushed and overwhelmed in life God will give you rest and take all your burdens.  God doesn’t intend for us to get overwhelmed with things in life that do not matter. I have started to ask myself when I get overwhelmed with things in life “does this really matter to God?”  A lot of times we get overwhelmed with things of the world and it becomes too much. 
It is so easy to get caught up in life. With the hustle and bustle of work, school, extra circular activities, and children you feel like you are being pulled in a million different directions and you are just trying to survive. God is always with us and at times like this I think of a very powerful verse Psalm 46:10 “Be still and know that I am God”
God help us to be unrushed in a rushed world. God help us to thrive and not just survive. 

This devotion was from the heart of Sarah Akins. 

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Restoration and Recovery - And Then...They Went Back to Their Old Ways

This is the conclusion of a several part devotion dedicated to the book of Nehemiah chapter 3.


Nehemiah 13:6-9
 
But while all this was going on, I was not in Jerusalem, for in the thirty-second year of Artaxerxes king of Babylon I had returned to the king. Sometime later I had asked his permission to come back to Jerusalem. Here I learned about the evil thing Eliashib had done in providing Tobiah a room in the courts of the house of God. I was greatly displeased and threw out all Tobiah's household goods out of the room. I gave orders to purify the rooms, and then I put back into them the equipment of the house of God, with the grain offerings and the incense.
 
 
Nehemiah 13:15
 
In those days I saw people in Judah treading winepresses on the Sabbath and bringing grain and loading it on donkeys, together with wine, grapes, figs and all other kinds of loads. And they were bringing all this into Jerusalem on the Sabbath.
 
 
So, ready for the awesome ending to our restoration / recovery study from the book of Nehemiah? There isn't one. They went back to their old ways. After the wall was completed, after the gates were all in working order and repaired. They forgot. They forgot about when Ezra read them the Law of Moses and they wept and mourned because of their past sins. They forgot how hard this process was and how much time and effort it took to rebuild the walls and the gates, oh the gates they took so much work. They forgot how they had to battle. At one time they were working with only one had while the other hand held a sword. They forgot how the enemy taunted them and how hard it was to stand up to them over and over again. They forgot that they made promises to God. That they had told him they would not neglect the house of God again. They forgot how He pulled them out of the valley. They forgot how He helped them shovel all their trash out of their soul. They forgot what those cleansing waters felt like when they jumped in that time. They forgot how He fought for them when they were in spiritual warfare and they needed Him. They forgot that He said He was coming back. They forgot to keep inspecting their life and going back through the circle of restoration. They forgot what repairs needed made. They forgot what areas they had to guard. They forgot. They forgot God.

 
Nehemiah 13:30
 
 
So I purified the priests and the Levites of everything foreign, and assigned them duties, each to his own task. I also made provision for contributions of wood at designated times, and for the first fruits.
 
 
Remember me with favor, my God.
 
 
Starting over is what I take away from this last passage of Nehemiah. Getting rid of everything foreign and making provisions for the sacrifices to begin again to God.
 
 
Why would this great book of promise and restoration and accomplishment end like this? I think it is to remind us of how we are. How we are forgetful forgetters of what God does for us. How we are so much like the Israelites. Let this be a reminder to stay inside the city, to not get in this position where our lives have to be purified again.
 
This whole book of Nehemiah just represents the most admirable picture of God. He knew. He knew the whole time that they would go back to their old ways and this whole process would have to start over. But, He was still their. At every victory. At every win. At every repair. He was their. Rooting them on.
 
 
After all their work and commitment, they just went back to their old ways. Don't let that happen to you. Don't be like the Israelites of this story. Be like the Nehemiah of this story. Always a leader. Always organizing. Always making preparations. Always praying.
 
 
Remember me with favor, my God.
 
 
 
 
Thanks so much for reading!
I hope you enjoyed this study of Nehemiah as much as I did!
It was a really big spiritual commitment on my part and I am so thankful God gave me the strength and vision to carry it out.
 
I would love to connect with you!
 
Here is a list of every devotion that was written by me in this study of Nehemiah - Restoration and Recovery.

Sit Down. Weep. Mourn, pray, and fast - How to Handle Horrible News

 
Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

Part 8

Part 9

Monday, September 8, 2014

God is Faithful

Jesus Christ bought us so much when he became the sacrificial lamb of God for us. We focus a lot on the forgiveness of God through the blood of Jesus, and we should be forever grateful for his sacrifice. Let's look alittle deeper to see what else Jesus accomplished for us at the cross.

In Hebrews 10:19 to 23 the author speaks about Jesus becoming our high priest and through his blood we as believers can now come boldly to the holy place of God. He bought us a new and living way that the Old Testament Christians did not have access too. We can actually pray to God the Father directly and make our requests known to him. When he looks at us he sees the blood of Jesus not our weaknesses and sins. Here is the scripture I am referring to by the NLT version of the bible.

Heb10:19 - And so, dear brothers and sisters, we can boldly enter heaven's Most Holy Place because of the blood of Jesus. V 20. By his death, Jesus opened a new and life- giving way through the curtain into the Most Holy Place. V 21. And since we have a great high priest who rules over God's house, V 22 let us go right into the presence of God with sincere hearts fully trusting him. For our quilty consciences have been sprinkled with Christ's blood to make us clean, and our bodies have been washed with pure water. V 23. Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise. 

Gods is faithful to keep all the promises he has made to believers. Is it not wonderful to realize you are free to go into the most holy place and speak to the god of the universe if you know Jesus as your Savior and Lord? Jesus bought us a front row seat into the Fathers throne room! Praise god!! We can boldly go and speak to him. In Romans 8:15 the word says that we have not received a spirit of bondage again to fear, but we received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father! We have been adopted into Gods intimate family and are called his sons ands daughters! I do not know about you but that is shouting ground for me!  

This devotion was written by the heart of Pat James via the Holy Spirit of God. May you be blessed this day and always. Please comment at ptrc_maher@yahoo.com



Sunday, September 7, 2014

Restoration and Recovery - 13

This is part 13 of a several part devotion dedicated to the book of Nehemiah chapter 3.


Nehemiah 3:31

Next to him, Malkijah, one of the goldsmiths, made repairs as far as the house of the temple servants and the merchants, opposite the Inspection Gate, and as far the room above the corner.
Do you ever skip over chapters in the Bible like this? Go read it, Nehemiah 3, it just lists people's names and what they worked on and in what order they did. I almost skipped it, I almost just zipped right through it. I was riding in the car after doing a half good job of reading the chapter when I heard, "the gates, study the gates," in my Spirit. So I went back and I studied the gates. They mean something alright. It's a blue print laid out for us. If you need restoration in your life (who doesn't?!?!?!) or if you are needing to go through recovery (gaining back something that was lost, returning to a normal healthy place!!!!!!), here is your plan.

In part 12 we talked about the Eastern Gate. The twelfth step in this restoration / recovery process.  The Eastern Gate is about the remembrance of the return of Jesus. Having that mind set to be waiting for his return.

The next and final gate mentioned is the Inspection Gate. Inspection of your life, that is. We have been through every gate at this point. We have made a full circle. We started with the Sheep gate / salvation, got our faith built up at the Old Gate, cleaned out our souls at the Dung Gate, experienced the protection and cleansing power at the Fountain Gate, learned how to life the lifestyle that God wants us to at the Water Gate, learned a little about spiritual battles at the Horse Gate, and now we are about to make full circle. I love that these steps are in a circle. A continuous circle. That we can go round and round and round. Because lets face it, this wall and set of gates that surrounds Jerusalem they are big. They cover a lot of area. They aren't always going to stay in perfect tip top shape. Cracks may form in certain areas and once we inspect and realize where they are we might need to go fix that section again. An enemy might weasel his way in while we are preoccupied fixing a piece of the wall. We might need to go back and revisit a gate to make sure it is in working area. This circle of work is going to continue until the return of The Lord. It's ok to keep working, and keep on repairing, and keep on building as long as we stay inside the city.

Nehemiah 10: 30
"We promise not..."
You see everything was going good for the Israelites. They had worked hard. Full circle. Put their whole heart into it. Ezra had presented the Law of Moses to them. They had fasted. They had prayed. They had praised. They had promised. They were making it. They were doing this thing.
Nehemiah 11:1-2
Now the leaders of the people settled in Jerusalem. The rest of the people cast lots to bring one out of every ten of them to live in Jerusalem, the Holy City, while the remaining nine were to stay in their own towns. The people commended all who volunteered to live in Jerusalem.
Then once everything was fixed enough to function and all the hard hard work was done. They had to cast lots to see who would HAVE to stay in the city. And, the people that were basically MADE to stay they were commended. Why? After all the work and going through all the processes to fix all the gates. Why would they not want to stay in the city?
Probably because living in the city took more work. It was a Holy City! It is Jerusalem for goodness sakes! You have to live right and act right and you are required to defend what you built, if you stay inside the city.
Don't be like the Israelites. Let your hearts desire to be a living sacrifice to God. To realize that living inside this Holy City might not always be easy. You are going to have to battle and defend and fight and forgive and be nice and love others and serve Jesus. But, oh how worth it it will be. To here Him finally say, "You did good my child. You sacrificed for Me. You held on for Me. You made it." Inspect. Inspect your life again from this gate. Don't exit from here. Don't say everything is ok. Go find an area and work some more. Go repair that little crack before it becomes a gaping hole. Go protect that certain piece of the wall that is easily attacked. Stay inside this circle. Choose to live in Jerusalem. Choose on your own to stay inside this Holy City!!!
Thanks so much for reading!
I would love to connect with you on a personal level!


This is a devotion that will be written in several parts as we discover the different gates and parts of the wall and what that means for us in the process of restoration and recovery. When a new devotion is written I will link here:



I have written several other devotions from the book of Nehemiah  that occur before or after chapter 3. They are linked here:



 

Saturday, September 6, 2014

The Map in my Lap

"Thus say The Lord: Stand by the roads and look: and ask for the eternal paths, where the good, old way is: then walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls."...   Jeremiah 6:16 AMP

  There's a flight plan in aviation. When a destination is established a flight plan is made. This is a detailed plan, in writing, that is held upon your lap - along with your map as you fly to you destination. It keeps you on course.

  In the life of a child of God we have a map. It's called the Bible. And contains all the detailed information we need to reach our destination- heaven- safely.

  Along this journey of life sometimes we just cruise along, enjoying the scenery. At times we journey through air space that is protected by an Air Traffic Controller and they help us navigate in areas where there might be a possibility of an accident. Much like the work of the Holy Spirit. He gives us detailed instructions when we must navigate treacherous areas.

  Sometimes we might get off course, through distraction and mayhem but we always have Heavenly Father who can get us back on course- all we have to do is ask -and stick to the map.

  Prayer: Dear Father, You tell us in Your Word that if we get off course and sin, You are faithful and just to forgive us our sins, if we ask. Lord I ask you to forgive me of my sins and get me back on course. In Jesus Name, Amen.

Friday, September 5, 2014

WHO IS WATERING THE PLANTS?

Mark 4:8 (International Standard Version)
But others fell on good soil and produced a crop. They grew up, increased in size, and produced 30, 60, and 100 times what was sown.

In my life I have found that in every group you will find that only a few people do all the work! I found this out the hard way when my babies were growing up. I first encountered this in the elementary PTO. Then it continued all the way to the High School Band Boosters and oddly enough all the way to the college level of the UNA Pride of Dixie Marching Band!!!

To me....Church seems to be no different. My Church has a fabulous group of core people that are totally sold out to Jesus and run God's Holy Church like a fine tuned sports car! They pitch in wherever needed, no matter what, they are there to pick up the slack, they stand, they intercede, they are the ones God has trusted to get the job done!!!

Not long ago I waltzed up to my Church to do my long list of things before Sunday Service. I noticed the plants in front of the Church building needed watering. I wondered...who's job is this? I wanted to walk right past them. I wanted to fly right into Church and get my job done and fly right back home! I thought... the person who's job this really is will get them watered before Sunday morning, I'm sure! The Holy Spirit tugged at my heart and I'm glad to say I listened and have watered the plants ever since.

Every unsaved soul that The Lord has placed in a Christians path either  needs the seed of salvation sown or needs the seed that someone else before you has planted to be watered. It is crystal clear that Jesus is coming soon. All you have to do is watch the news to figure that out! Life is short and we are so blessed to be living in these last days! Live by the example of Christ and spread the gospel of HIS GOOD NEWS!!! Don't walk over the Holy Spirit's guidance and think that the next person will do the job that The Lord intended for you to do!!! WATER THOSE SEEDS!!! WATCH THOSE PLANTS GROW :)))

Many blessings to you always ~
Pamela Britt Malone
@pammiemalone IG





Thursday, September 4, 2014

Are You Jesus??

The following was sent to me several years ago. I'm not sure who wrote it but I pray it touches you. 

A few years ago a group of salesmen went to a regional sales convention in
Chicago. They had assured their wives that they would be home in plenty of
time for Friday night's dinner. In their rush, with tickets and briefcases, one
of these salesmen inadvertently kicked over a table which held a display
of apples. Apples flew everywhere. Without stopping or looking back, they
all managed to reach the plane in time for their nearly-missed boarding...

ALL BUT ONE!!! He paused, took a deep breath, got in touch with his
feelings and experienced a twinge of compassion for the girl whose apple
stand had been overturned.

He told his buddies to go on without him, waved good-bye, told one of them
to call his wife when they arrived at their home destination and explain
his taking a later flight.

Then he returned to the terminal where the apples were all over the
terminal floor.

He was glad he did.

The 16-year-old girl was totally blind! She was softly crying, tears
running down her cheeks in frustration, and at the same time helplessly
groping for her spilled produce as the crowd swirled about her; no one
stopping and no one to care for her plight.

The salesman knelt on the floor with her, gathered up the apples, put them
back on the table and helped organize her display. As he did this, he
noticed that many of them had become battered and bruised; these he set
aside in another basket.

When he had finished, he pulled out his wallet and said to the girl,
"Here, please take this $40 for the damage we did. Are you okay?"

She nodded through her tears. He continued on with, "I hope we didn't
spoil your day too badly."

As the salesman started to walk away, the bewildered blind girl called
out to him, "Mister...." He paused and turned to look back into those blind
eyes.

She continued, "Are you Jesus?"

He stopped in mid-stride ... and he wondered. He gently went back and
said, "No, I am nothing like Jesus - He is good, kind, caring, loving, and
would never have bumped into your display in the first place."

The girl gently nodded: "I only asked because I prayed for Jesus to help
me gather the apples. He sent you to help me, so you are like Him - only
He knows who will do His will. Thank you for hearing His call, Mister."

Then slowly he made his way to catch the later flight with that question
burning and bouncing about in his soul: "Are you Jesus?"

Do people mistake you for Jesus?

That's our destiny, is it not?

To be so much like Jesus that people cannot tell the difference as we live
and interact with a world that is blind to His love, life and grace.

If we claim to know Him, we should live, walk and act as He would. Knowing
Him is more than simply quoting Scripture and going to church. It's
actually living the Word as life unfolds day to day .

You are the apple of His eye even though you, too, have been bruised by
a fall. He stopped what He was doing and picked up you and me on a hill
called Calvary and paid in full for our damaged fruit.


Please share this, IF you feel led to do so.

Sometimes we just take things for granted, when we really need to be
sharing what we know ... Thanks.
Beth Reed