Sunday, May 20, 2018

"A Royal Diadem"

Reflections4Life May 20, 2018
“A Royal Diadem”
“You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem in the hand of your God.” Isaiah 62:3
Scripture Contemplations: Zephaniah 3:8-10; Jeremiah 33:9; Zechariah 9:16-17; Philippians 2
©Ruthe McDonald.
s I watched the Royal wedding between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle (now Duke and Duchess of Sussex) I was moved by the beauty of the ceremony, as well as the beauty of the bride and their love story. A few things caught my attention; one of which was the tiara that was worn by the bride. An ornate crown that had not been seen nor worn since the 1950s. It was a powerful symbol of acceptance, change, and status. The crown symbolized the change in the bride’s life. What she was she will no longer be. She takes on a new role with new responsibilities. She is changed forever, now a representation of the Monarch.
When we come to the knowledge of God and who we are to Him and in Him, our lives are forever changed. When we accept Christ into our hearts we gain understanding and insight, and we now recognize ourselves as a Royal Diadem. We are a representation of God on this earth. We are precious and priceless in the hand of God, worthy of more than we give ourselves credit for. Not because of anything, we did but because of what Christ has given; what He has done. It is time for us to rise up and walk in the truth of the calling on our lives and in the truth of who God says we are. A representative of God’s love. A Royal Diadem.
I decree that this week’s Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart mind and soul. Walk in the confidence of who you are in God; a representation of the King who reigns on the throne of your heart. Meditate on the word this week. Get to know who God has called and blessed you to be through His word. Know that you are a royal diadem in the hand of God—precious, invaluable, chosen. The more you get to know God the more you will know yourself and your purpose.
In the Hands of God
Zechariah 9:16-17 On that day the Lord their God will save them, as the flock of his people; for like the jewels of a crown they shall shine on his land.
diadem: (noun) A decorative band or wreath worn about the head as a symbol of victory or honor, a declaration, a representation
In the hands of God, our lives are changed forever. We are no longer the same. His blood covers us. His spirit fills us. God has saved us and set us apart for a reason. When we seek His will and His heart, we will not only know who He is, but also we learn who we are, and we learn our purpose. Nothing ever stays the same in the hands of God.
Every day we seek His face and His will, we open our hearts to Him. He fine-tunes our ears to the frequency of His voice. We learn His way of doing things. He is our potter and we are His clay. This world is the His wheel—the Potter’s wheel. Sometimes in this world, we get chipped, broken, bruised, and even shatter. However, in the hands of God—the Potter—we are carefully and diligently remolded, built up again, restored. Even having to go through the fire, He is burning off all impurities, refining us until we come out like fine gold, precious silver. He shapes stretches, molding us into vessels of purity and goodness. He smooths all of the rough edges until we are the symbol of His promise and declaration on this earth; a precious jewel, a crown, a royal diadem.
A Representation of the King
Sometimes we forget who we are and whose we are. We are a royal priesthood, a royal diadem of the Lord. We represent our heavenly Father on this earth. We are a symbol of God’s goodness, promises, and blessings. We are a representation of God’s presence on this earth. Yet far too many forget or do not know who we are and who God has called us to be. On the earth, in the presence of others who may or may not know who God is and the power that comes with that knowledge and understanding. We accept things in our lives we should never accept. We have allowed people to do and say things that would never fly or be accepted if we understood who we were and are worth.
When I watched the Royal wedding, someone struck my heart and resonated with my soul—the mother of the bride. You could see the pride in her eyes for the daughter she raised. The love was evident. As a parent, she had done her job and done it well. A thought also occurred that her daughter is a reflection, a representation of her. Meghan reflected and represented the sacrifices, the hours of work, the sometimes hardships, and ridicule, and even hate that she (mom) willingly endured for the love of her daughter. Who now, was not only declaring to the world her love and commitment to a man but also, she was representing her mother…a reflection of who her mother is while at the same time, staying true to herself and what is important to her. Just as the crown/tiara she wore represented the Royals, she herself, was the diadem of her mother’s life. A gem, a jewel in her mother’s crown.
This is who we are to God—His royal diadem; a representative of all His love and sacrifice, a symbol of His power and dedication. We become the example for the world to see what God desires to do for them once they believe, accept, and receive Christ into their lives.
Many of us, unfortunately, do not see ourselves as that diadem. Because of all we have endured—the tests, and trials and poor decisions made—we do not feel worthy, and often feel like we have to prove something or earn being the diadem of God. We cannot. It is God that holds us high, setting us apart, and declares, and decrees us as His diadem, our lives a testament to His glory and His love for His creation. His redemption. We become brand new in His hands. Someone beautiful, precious, priceless, and highly esteemed. When people see us, they should see God; a representative of the love and goodness of our heavenly Father and His promises for eternity.
My Beloveds, May the spirit of peace and prosperity finds permanent rest in your lives. I decree that every good thing that God has ordained for your life will become evident to you. Carry yourselves accordingly, Beloved. Do not accept any attitudes, behaviors, and treatments from others that do not respect, honor, or recognize who you are. Remember who you are to God and that you are priceless and worthy of unconditional love. You are worthy of the best, of living a life of greatness. Do not compromise but stand for what you believe and let God be the one that elevates you and brags on you. You are his precious jewel; it’s time to walk like you know and believe this. You are blessed. Now go…and be a blessing!
©2018. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

"The Power of Motherhood"

Reflections4Life May 13, 2018
“The Power of Motherhood”
“Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.” Proverbs 31:30
Scripture Contemplation: Exodus 20:12; Psalm 27:10; Proverbs 1:8; 6:20; John 19:25-27…

©Ruthe McDonald.
appy Mother’s Day to all of the mothers and mothers to be, and mother figures. May the Lord continue to bless you with His knowledge and wisdom to walk in the greatness that He has ordained for your life.
There is something innately powerful about motherhood. From carrying a child to birthing a child to rearing a child—it takes strength and character to be the kind of mother that God has ordained. Please understand, also, that carrying a child and giving a birth does not make you a mother or give you power. However, it is what lies in the heart of a woman. A woman who has the care of, and influence over, a child or children in her care.
I decree that this week’s Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart mind and soul. Allow God to speak to your heart this week; to bring to your remembrance all of the lessons taught by your mother or the woman that held that position in your heart. Reflect on the things you may not have realized as a child but when considered today, may have you look at your mother now, with understanding. Honor the mother(s) in your life today. If she is still on this earth, bless her today. And for all of us whose mothers have transitioned; honor them. Honor their memories and their legacies by living well and adding to her legacy.
What Love Has Shown Me
I have learned a lot about love through the years from the women in my life that have mothered me. Though I have been blessed to birth children of my own yet, I have been blessed with children in my life that see me as a mother and seek my counsel, wisdom, and instructions. I do not take that lightly because I understand that it is not only what I say that has an impact on them, it is also what I show them through my actions; what my life is reflecting.
Love is an action word. Love, sincere love, is not contained, and it does not judge. It sees all things, forgives all, and holds no grudges. I have learned so much about love and the power of motherhood through the women in my life. Their steadfastness in love and dedication to their families through sometimes-tumultuous times has shown me the kind of woman I always strive to be.
I have a number of women that have shown me the power of motherhood. Women who have shown me what love looks like in action and how powerful a mother’s love can be. Today, I reflect on four of those women. Women who have transitioned but have helped to shape who I am. My Nana (great-grandmother), my Grams, my Aunt Sharon, and my Mother.
From my Nana—I learned dedication and discipline. She was a woman dedicated to her family and her service to God. From being an Usher in her church for over fifty years, starting the very first food basket program for the holidays, to the many other things she did to show the love in her heart and the love of God, it left an impression upon my heart. One that reminds me of the kind of legacy I desire to leave. To this day, I follow the lessons she gave her family.
From My Grams—I learned steadfastness, determination, running a business and that it is never too late to go after your dreams and passion. My Grams was my best friend. She was the keeper of all her grandchildren’s secrets. She raised eight children, suffered the pain of seeing one of her sons murdered while he was protecting an older woman from being mugged. Yet through it all, she remained a constant source of unwavering love, faith, and steadfastness. She worked hard to support her children. She went back to college at a later age. She pursued her passion from childhood, eventually opening her own Hair Salon. Though she was older, she could outdo many of her younger counterparts. Sometimes she’d get to work at 8:00 am and wouldn’t finish until 1:00 am! In her sixties at that! Through her, I learned that love makes all things possible.
From My Auntie Sharon—I learned forgiveness, resilience, honesty, and seizing the moment. This is difficult since she just transitioned a month ago. Her life taught me how you get back up no matter how many times you fall. To be honest with yourself and those you love. To forgive because life is way too short to harbor negative emotions and thoughts. I learned that just because things are one way does not mean they have to stay that way. And to seize every moment, every day, with a heart of gratitude because you never know when the one you love may be taken away. I loved her more than I have the words to adequately explain. Her life, love, and lessons live on in her children, in all of her family.
From My Mother—The lessons of love are so many, I’d can write a book and I will someday. My mother was not just my mother, she was my friend, my counselor, my champion, my pastor, my intercessor. I learned unconditional love, sacrifice, servanthood, how to truly serve God with your heart and soul, how to pray, how to believe in myself; and so much more. Seriously, there will be a book.
I will say this about my mother, she showed how strong love is. How it takes a licking and keeps on ticking. She has shown me the power and strength of love and how it can heal, save, soothe, and correct. I learned the worth of prayer, prayer that comes from the heart. I also learned that the prayers of the righteous never fail or stopped being answered because they leave this earth. Their prayers have no expiration date and that God will answer their prayers, keeping His word to them. There is not a day that goes by that I do not hear her voice, am reminded of her love, and feel her presence all around me; especially in the times of distress and heartache.
A mother’s love is indeed more powerful than the grave, and stronger than death.
My Beloveds, May the spirit of peace and prosperity finds permanent rest in your lives. I decree that every good thing that God has ordained for your life will become evident to you. Beloveds, honor the mother’s in your life today. Give them their flowers and accolades now, while they are with you. God gave mothers a special gift. Those women, who use it, who understand it, will not only see doors open that only God could have ordained but also see the difference they can make in a world filled with motherless children just waiting for a mother’s love. There is power in motherhood; the closest thing to the heart of God. You are blessed. Now go…and be a blessing!
©2018. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, May 06, 2018

"Do Not be Deterred By Pretty Words"

Reflections4Life May 6, 2018
“Do not Be Deterred by Pretty Words”
“My hand will be against the prophets who see false visions and who give lying divinations. They shall not be in the council of my people, nor be enrolled in the register of the house of Israel, nor shall they enter the land of Israel. And you shall know that I am the Lord God.” Ezekiel 13:9
Scripture Contemplations: 1 Kings 13; 22; Jeremiah 14; 23; Psalm 62; Ephesians 4; Hebrews 4
©Ruthe McDonald.
here are a plan and a purpose for each of our lives. God knows who we are and has declared and decreed a plan for us before we were birthed or in our mother’s womb. As we grow and mature, experiencing life and come to a knowledge of who God is and who we are in Him, we should develop an intimate relationship with our Creator for ourselves. Getting to know who God is on our own and learning His voice and His ways. It is that personal relationship with God, the development of intimacy between our Creator and ourselves, that allows us to know and recognize His plan and will for our lives. No matter what things appear to be—we will be less likely to be deterred by pretty words or lying lips that would try to keep us from the promises of God designed for our lives.
I decree that this week’s Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart mind and soul. God desires to reveal and to make known to His children many things. Take the time to spend in His presence and get to know who He is for yourself this week. Determine to let this week be the week that you begin or start again, to set aside intimate and quality time with the heavenly Father. Get to know His voice, His character, His unconditional love, and plans for you. When you know God—truly know Him—you will not be easily deterred by the lies, whispers, or sweet sounding words of those who would prey upon you and desire your destruction.
Not All Things Are What They Appear to Be
2 Timothy 3:4-6 “treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people. For among them are those who creep into households and capture weak women, burdened with sins and led astray by various passions,
One year for my birthday, my Mom decided to surprise me and bake me a birthday cake. I never made a cake I wanted but whatever my Mom wanted. I always wanted to do something for someone else on my birthday. This particular year, she decided to surprise me and bake a coconut layer cake.
The cake was a beautiful three-layer confection with buttercream icing and mounds of coconut. It looked good. Smelled good, too. But it was a deceiving cake! That cake lied! We laughed long and hard about this cake. It looked and smelled like her other coconut cakes. But when we went to taste the cake? It was one of the worse cakes my Mom had ever made! I never took the first piece of cake. I always gave it to my Mom. She took a bite, and I saw her face. I asked her what was wrong. She shook her head and told me to try it myself. I took a forkful off her plate, and I knew why she made the face. That was a deceiving cake! It was so dry and had absolutely no flavor at all. I could not believe it. We stared at the cake for a minute then burst out laughing. It was truly a beautiful and good smelling cake, but it was like eating a piece of cardboard. Not even the icing saved it.
We never figured out what went wrong. We referred to that cake at the deception cake. We laughed so hard, and I said the cake’s appearance definitely did not match the truth of its contents. And just like that cake; all pretty and looking the way you would expect a coconut cake to look—are a lot of people walking around today. Some in our lives, pretending to be someone they are not and seeking to deter us by their deceptive words and false appearances. Yet, on the inside, they are empty, flavorless, deceptive, and sometimes jealous, hoarding plans to come and deter us from what God has ordained for our lives.
Beloved, if God has given you a word in your heart, and has instructed you to take a certain path, do not be deterred by the sometimes “well-meaning” words of those who may seem like they know God and walk with God. Not everyone who says they believe and are for God is. Not every person who has a title walks in the integrity of that title. Know God for yourself. Know the Father’s voice and be who God has called you to be; walking in the path He has ordained for Your life.
God’s Word is True
Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.
If there is one thing you can depend on, it is the word of God. Whatever God has spoken to you; whatever He has impressed upon your heart to do; believe it, and believe that He has equipped you to do it, and will be the provision for vision(s) He has placed in you. You must trust God. In order to trust Him, you must spend time in His presence, and in the word, getting to know Him, allowing Him to bring understanding and wisdom.
God is not a man that He should lie or that has to repent. Whatever God has spoken to you, no matter how long it may appear to be in happening, it will come to pass. (Numbers 23:19) Exercise patience and meditate on the word of God. Ponder in your heart the things that God has spoken to you, and do not rush or easily share with others what God have placed in you. There are a time and place for all things. Let God show you who people are. Allow the spirit and gift of discernment grow in you so you may make the correct choices in the right seasons.
Be Anxious For Nothing
Proverbs 27:6-7 Faithful are the wounds of a friend [who corrects out of love and concern], But the kisses of an enemy are deceitful [because they serve his hidden agenda]. He who is satisfied loathes honey, but to the hungry soul, any bitter thing is sweet.
Sometimes the truth hurts. Yet, it is that same truth that will bring healing, direction, purpose, and the fulfillment of plans, visions, and dreams. We do not always like the delay in the things that we are waiting for. We often want the promises of God quick, fast, and in a hurry. For most with this attitude, they will sometimes miss the blessings and deceived by the enemy many a time.
My Beloveds, May the spirit of peace and prosperity finds permanent rest in your lives. I decree that every good thing that God has ordained for your life will become evident to you. Do not shy away from God when He brings correction. Fill your soul and heart with the promises and word of God. Do not be anxious for anything, but do all things in God’s timing, trusting Him to bring you to that point of fulfillment in His plans of prosperity for you—spiritually, physically, and yes, financially. You are blessed. Now go…and be a blessing.
©2018. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, April 29, 2018

"All Things New"

Reflections4Life April 29, 2018
“All Things New”
“And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also, he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.” Revelation 21:5
Scripture Contemplation: Leviticus 26:9-11; Isaiah 43:19; 48; 66:22-24; Acts 14; 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12...
©Ruthe McDonald
here is nothing God desires more than for us to be with Him in paradise; to spend our eternity in His presence. To experience on this earth all that He has ordained. Yet, even God knew that things could not remain the same in our lives if we expect to receive all that He has promised. There is no room for new things in a room overcrowded with old things. Eventually, anything new added would only get lost amongst the clutter. God wants us to know that He is making all things new today. He is restoring us physically, mentally, spiritually. However, some things may be painful at times, and difficult to let go of and move on from. He is clearing away the things that have hindered and blocked us from His move and anointing in our lives. Make no mistake: God’s timing is perfect and He is making all things new.
I decree that this week’s Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart mind and soul. Determine in your heart and mind to let go of what things appear to be. Meditate on the word and promises of God. Contemplate on the scriptures given today, and allow them to feed your soul and strengthen you, as God begins to make all things new concerning you. Be a willing participant in your transformation by believing God, by exercising faith. After all, all it takes is faith the size of a mustard seed to make a significant change.
More Than Our Eyes Can See
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.
Our heavenly Father wants more for us than we could ever imagine. Sometimes we are trapped by our current circumstance, unable to see past our trials and heartache. We forget the promises and word of God because of how things appear. It is even harder to see the light and the bright side of things when your life has been a series of what feels like bad events. Yet, even in all of that, God wants us to believe that His plan is to prosper us—spiritually and physically; to give us a future and a hope.
Do you think that God did not know what lies ahead of you? He did. What many of us, however, do not know and what some of us have forgotten, is that our lives are more than what we can see. There is always a beginning, a middle, and an ending of a story. From the moment God created us, He designed us to withstand the goodness and the darkness of life. He has placed in us the ability to rise above and to push through adversity and affliction. However, we must see through His eyes, believe in our hearts, have faith in what God has spoken, even when it does not appear that way.
Clearing Away Baggage
Matthew 9:17 Neither is new wine put into old wineskins. If it is, the skins burst and the wine is spilled and the skins are destroyed. But new wine is put into fresh wineskins, and so both are preserved.”
Beloved, trust when I tell you, that God has great things for your life. He has promises that you have yet to discover, and you never will if you continue to hold onto old things, old ways, and what others may have done to you. It’s called baggage. Or as my Gram would say, a house of clutter.
We pray and ask God for a new life. We ask the Father to bless us, to change us, to increase our territory, but we have not done the work of cleaning out and taking care of what we already have. We have not done proper preparation that would enable us to be ready for the abundance or magnitude of the greatness of God manifesting in our lives.
Do you ever wonder why some people—like the lottery winners—can be broke in just a few years’ time? They were not prepared—mentally or emotionally. Some were overwhelmed, not financially educated, had the wrong people around them, and some were stuck in old ways and patterns of doing things.
Would you purchase brand new furniture for your home, having not gotten rid of the old furniture first? Imagine what that would look like. If you were beginning a new relationship with someone, knowing and believing in your heart you were going to marry; would you treat them as they deserved or would you hold them to a standard based upon a past relationship? Would you withhold trust and treat them based on the hurt that still resides in you from the past? What if that were done to you?
Some of us are holding onto old ways of thinking, doing, and behaving. We are holding onto old hurts, ideals, and even old love and memories that we have no room for anything new. We ask God to bless us but have yet severed ties from the past, or attempted to clean out our houses to make room for the abundance that God has for us.
All Things New
Leviticus 26:9-11(MSG) I’ll give you my full attention: I’ll make sure you prosper, make sure you grow in numbers, and keep my covenant with you in good working order. You’ll still be eating from last year’s harvest when you have to clean out the barns to make room for the new crops. I’ll set up my residence in your neighborhood; I won’t avoid or shun you.
We do not always know the middle of our life’s story. We do not know where our journey will lead us. However, when we have trust and faith in God, we can hold onto and believe in what He has spoken concerning the finish line, concerning the best years of life. With God, it is a guaranteed promise and not just wishful thinking.
My Beloveds, May the spirit of peace and prosperity finds permanent rest in your lives. I decree that every good thing that God has ordained for your life will become evident to you. God cannot lie. He is making all things new. Having washed away the dredges of our past, all we have to do is believe and accept this awesome gift of the Heavenly Father; walking in His love and His promises. Let go of the past and its baggage. Have a new mind and new outlook; learning and receiving all that God has ordained for our lives. You are blessed. Now go…and be a blessing!

©2018. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, April 22, 2018

"The Possible Journey Amidst Impossible Circumstances"

Reflections4Life April 22, 2018
“The Possible Journey Amidst Impossible Circumstances”
“But Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26
Scripture Contemplation: Genesis 15; Deuteronomy 4:35-38; 2 Kings 17; 2 Chronicles 36; Luke 14
I decree that this week’s Reflections will continue to be a source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart mind and soul. There is a journey that we are all on called life. During this journey, there will arise many impossible circumstances—to the human heart and mind but not impossible for God and those who choose to believe. The journey we are on is a possible journey; one filled with many possibilities based on the belief in our heart and mind. Allow the heavenly Father to renew your mind and resurrect your hope, dreams, visions, and faith. Let God show you the possibilities in the journey before you, regardless of what you may have faced or are currently facing.
A Lesson in Endurance
Song of Solomon 8:6a (MSG) Love is invincible facing danger and death. Passion laughs at the terrors of hell.
This past weekend, my beautiful cousins laid their Mom to rest to join their father in eternal peace. My Aunt Sharon was there for me when my Mom transitioned three years ago. She was there for me in my times of need, calling me every day. She made daily calls and weekend calls to her family members just to tell them that she loved them. Every Sunday she would call me after reading Reflections and would tell me how much the word touched her heart and how did I know that was exactly what she needed to hear that day.
This woman of character, of substance, taught me that life is a journey filled with many lessons and possibilities. Life can be a beautiful, yet sometimes scary and lonely journey with difficulties, but a journey, nonetheless, that should be lived with expectations of love, passion, faith, and possibilities that surpass our imagination, no matter what comes our way.
Hers was a life of endurance. A life that spoke of possibilities despite impossible circumstances that may have arisen. When the love of her life transitioned 25 years ago, her determination to push forward showed me strength. What she showed her five daughters, and how she taught her fourteen grandchildren and two great grans about their grandpa Richard and their love was a testament, to me, about the power of truly unconditional love and that it sincerely is more powerful than death and stronger than the grave.
The Greatest Possibility is Love
Song of Solomon 8:6b-8a (MSG) The fire of love stops at nothing—it sweeps everything before it. Floodwaters can’t drown love, torrents of rain can’t put it out. Love can’t be bought, love can’t be sold—it’s not to be found in the marketplace.
Here is the greatest lesson I gained from my Auntie’s life: The trials and tests we face are there to strengthen us and to weed out all the people, places, and things that do not belong in our life. Life is not easy, but it is worth the fight to live it with love, joy, and happiness. We must know and believe in our hearts, that the love we will encounter will outshine and outlast all of the bad times if we choose to trust the process, endure the journey, have faith, to continue loving, and though difficult, forgive and move on.
On this possible journey we call life, the greatest possibility is love. Unconditional love. A love so powerful that it can turn impossible situations and circumstances into possibilities when we dare to believe and do not allow the lies of the enemy to blind us and deafen us to not only the love and redemption of God, but also the gifts of love that God brings into our life.
Unconditional love—like God—does not boast in itself. It does not say look at me, look at me. Nor does it keep a record or score of the wrongs done by those we say we love and who love us. Love is patient, kind, and understanding. Love is also freeing, healing, powerful, and very much possible. It is the greatest possibility that we have in our lives. The possibility that can change the course we are on if we are willing to believe in it and fight for it. Nothing in life worth having has ever stayed in our lives or is gained without one hundred percent dedication and the willingness to fight for what we believe in and desire.
Contrary to what some may believe or have been told, love—unconditional, sincere love—is not weak, it is strong and powerful. Nor can it be faked. It is real, life-changing, and healing. One of the reasons why the enemy does all that he can to destroy love, to divide and conquer, to separate and put asunder, is to destroy relationships, which in turn destroys families. Family—a united family—that loves and serves God is the last thing that the enemy wants. It despises a united front; a family that prays together surely does stay together. We are an example of the promises of God and His love and have the power to influence a whole new generation.
God designs a journey filled with possibilities; a journey of lifelong lessons, of hope and dreams, of love and victory. The enemy will throw in roadblocks and pits, and try to turn people—especially those we love—against us. He will work to create discord and disconnection. It is hard to see the sunlight and all the possibilities before us when all we see are impossible circumstances, have continuous negative thoughts, and constantly bombarded by the whispers, lies, and smoke and mirrors of the enemy.
At The Core of it All
Mark 9:23 And Jesus said to him, “‘If you can’! All things are possible for one who believes.”
Whatever you believe in your heart; whatever you give constant thought to, becomes your reality. Whatever you are speaking to yourself and declaring to the atmosphere manifests for you. There is power in our words and thoughts. I watched my Aunt come through some very difficult trials in life and still live the life she wanted and how she wanted. I saw her happiness and pride in her children and grandchildren. I saw the power of unconditional love and the belief in possibilities instead of a focus on impossible circumstances. Her love and passion were so strong, that she created an atmosphere of belief for her grandchildren and great grans. She would tell them about their grandfather and their great-grandmother—whom most never met—and it created a memory in their mind until those children could tell you stories about their grandfather and great-grandmother, as well Aunts and Uncles, as if they were there themselves to witness it. So now, their journeys are filled with examples of the power of love, faith, and belief. They will see the possibilities in the midst of impossible situations and know that they, too, have the same power to create their reality, no matter what they are faced with in this life.
My Beloveds, May the spirit of peace and prosperity finds permanent rest in your lives. I decree that every good thing that God has ordained for your life will become evident to you. Our life is a possible journey amidst impossible circumstances because of the love of God. There are possibilities before us, Beloved. The greatest of them being love. Unconditional love is powerful and healing and can change circumstances and hearts forever. If we believe. Don’t give up and do not allow the enemy to rob you. You are blessed. Now go…and be a blessing.
©2018. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, April 15, 2018

"Through The Eyes of God"

Reflections4Life April 15, 2018
“Through The Eyes of God”
“But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.” 1 Samuel 16:7
Scripture Contemplation: Deuteronomy 28; 1 Samuel 16; Job 4:6; Isaiah 55:8-9
©Ruthe McDonald.
Everything looks different through the eyes of God. In His presence, we will find the courage to do, to be, to see, to believe all that God says about us. What so many fail to realize is that, through the eyes of God, you are perfect. He sees a completed work. His Masterpiece. It is time for us to get into the presence of God and truly see ourselves through the eyes of God.
I declare that this week’s Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart mind and soul. Determine in your heart and mind to get in the presence of God this week, and allow Him to feed you; to fill you with His love and goodness, and to stir up inside of you the truth of who you are in Him. Shut out the world. Limit all distractions and receive all that God has ordained for you—one day at a time, one moment at a time.
Letting Go of the Past
Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to let go of the past. It can be difficult to shake the lies of what others have spoken over us. Whether it was family, strangers, teachers, people in authority, someone we may have looked up to and held in high regard. They may have spoken words to us that not only hurt but also placed a block in our hearts and minds about what we were actually capable of doing.
We are not our past or what people have said about us. Though our past affects our today, it does not have to define who we are right now, especially when God has forgiven us, and will create in us a new heart and mind when we dare to believe Him, and follow Him.
It can be difficult to let go of the past when constantly reminded of past mistakes and failures. When people refuse to see us for who we are right now; acknowledge the changes in us, or even see the potential that we have. Sometimes, in those instances we have to make the difficult choice of letting go and moving forward, pushing through all the darkness. That may look like letting go of people places and things. We may have separate ourselves, start over in a different place, move away from familiar things. Simply, cut people off and sometimes out of our lives. It is by no means easy but it is necessary. It is time to free ourselves and be open to all that God has ordained for our lives.
In The Presence of God
There is nothing more invigorating or life-changing than being in the presence of God. In the presence of God, there is peace, there is power, there is healing, there is the truth. So many of us run from God when we are facing difficulties or when we feel a certain way about ourselves. The flesh wants to hide. The enemy wants us to hide from God, also. Because if we run from God in the times of trouble and uncertainty, it gives the enemy the opportunity to pounce; to bombard us with his lying whispers that far too many of us fall for. He will remind us of every mistake we ever made. Every misstep; every negative situation, every lie ever uttered to us; Satan will be bringing it up.
We must run to God in the face of adversity and hardships. In His presence is where we need to be so that we may gain a sense of self and bask in the love and power that is our God. This—in His presence—is where we receive healing, strength, power, and the wisdom to move forward and push past the incessant attacks of the enemy. This is where we recharge and renew our minds and learn how to use the armor of God, as well as learning how to pray and how to strategically win each time against the enemy and be free from the lies that have plagued our lies and have stopped us from pursuing our dreams and visions.
Through the Eyes of God
Isaiah 55:8-9 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Everything looks different through the eyes of God. After spending time in His presence you cannot help but to see things differently and to realize that we, indeed, have the power to change our circumstances by changing our focus, our thoughts and the words we speak to ourselves, and what we accept or do not accept from others.
When we see through the eyes of God, we understand that His ways and thoughts are so far above ours. We come to understand that God is more loving, forgiving, and less judgmental than we are with others and with ourselves. The truth of the matter is, when God sees us, we are whole, complete, and perfect because of His Son. He does not see our past, shortcomings, and mistakes. He sees potential, what will be if we yield to Him. He sees a beautiful, wonderful, masterpiece of His design, waiting to experience all the love and promises that He ordained for our lives.
My Beloveds, May the spirit of peace and prosperity finds permanent rest in your lives. I decree that every good thing that God has ordained for your life will become evident to you. It is now time for us to see through the eyes of God. To see what God sees, how He sees. To see the light in the midst of the darkness; to feel joy in the midst of sorrow; to experience love in the face of indifference. You are blessed. Now go…and be a blessing!
©2018. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, April 08, 2018

"The Grace of God Changes Everything"

Reflections4Life April 8, 2018
“The Grace of God Changes Everything”
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9
Scripture Contemplation: Esther 2:17; Psalm 45; Zechariah 10:12; John 1; Acts 4; Romans 3
©Ruthe McDonald.
God's grace is sufficient and it is power— the power to transform us and to create us into who God has always ordained us to be. God accepts us just as we are, but it would be a travesty to stay the same under His anointing and in His grace. Even a flower must first experience death before it grows. Even a butterfly had to go through a transformation; dying to its old self. Come as you are, but allow the love of God transform you. God never expected us to do it on our own! That is why we have His grace.
I decree that this week’s Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart mind and soul. God’s grace is sufficient for every aspect of our lives. However, we must be willing to accept this gift from our Father. The enemy has duped many of us into believing that we are either not worthy of such love, or that we are fine just as we are because God says to come as we are. In order to know the truth and understand who God truly is, and all that He has ordained for, you must spend time in His presence. Then you will understand the power and dispensation of His grace and all that waits for you. The entirety of what God has ordained for you. When you do, you will know and understand you could never remain the same—change must indeed take place.
What Would You Do?
I want to make you think today. To think about your relationship with God. To think about His grace and what it truly means to be transformed by the love and grace of God; by the renewing of your mind.
If you received everything, you ever asked for; all that you wanted, desired, was manifested right now, what would you do? Would you be content? Would you be happy? Would you continue to seek after God and His way of doing things? Would you want to know more about who God is and whom He called and ordained you to be? Would you be interested in the teaching and voice of Holy Spirit? Would God be first; your relationship a priority? Would you be consumed with who God is and who He is in you? Or, would all that you asked for have the place in your heart and mind that once belonged to God?
I ask these questions to get you to think. To think about your purpose. To think about your intent when you come to God. Is God just a source to receive what you want? A convenient means to an end? Or is God truly King on the throne of your heart and who You desire a sincere, real, and intimate relationship with, solely because He is God?
Is God First in Your Life?
Beloved, is God truly first in your lives? When you tell God that you love Him, what exactly does that mean? Do you love Him for what He can give you? Or do you love Him for who He is? Do you thirst and hunger after righteousness, an intimacy with God. To know who He is just because of who He is? Many claim that God is first in their lives but the moment things do not go their way, they are seeking another avenue to get what they want. They become angry with God and refuse to fellowship any longer.
How soon we forget the mercy and grace of God when we are faced with impossible situations and God does not move when we believe He should have. We get disjointed and disappointed, not understanding that God indeed has ways far beyond what we can comprehend. Yet, His grace will carry us through if what we truly desire is God Himself and not only what He can do for us.
Do You Even Know God?
God knows who we are. He knows everything about us, every hair, every tear, every thought, every doubt, every solitary thing concerning us. Yet, do we even know who God really is, other than someone who can answer prayers? Have you taken time to know His heart, His soul? Or do you only seek Him for what you can gain from Him?
Father God is not a magician or some genie in a bottle. We do not make wishes, and then sit back and wait for Him to grant us our wishes then discard Him when we are through. He is not a Pimp, yet we prostitute ourselves seeking favors and trying to barter with God for services rendered. Telling God, since we have done this, and we have done that, then He should be doing this or that. It is the only reason we are serving God.
Do you show God everything? Even though He knows you, have you offered yourself to Him? Have you poured out your heart and soul and sold yourself out to who He is? Not for what He can give you or pour into you; but for the sheer reason of Him being God, your Creator, your Savior, who loves you unconditionally and you want Him to be in every part of your life? Nothing hidden. Giving Him complete access to all of you.
That’s a scary thing, isn’t it? To allow God into those secret places of shame, pain, confusion for fear of rejection. Because that’s all it is. We fear that God will not be who He says He is. Because some prayers have not seemed to be answered, or we have given up and let go of hope, then God cannot be who He says He is. We treat Him, and look at Him, comparing Him to every other person we have had the misfortune of being let down by. He is not them, Beloved. God is not a man that He would lie nor the son of man that He needs to repent. Even in all of that, God’s grace is extended towards us. His grace, saving us from countless situations that we put ourselves in, and would never be able to get out of without Him.  

His Grace Changes Everything
God’s Riches at Christ’s Expense. That was the acronym that I’d learned at a young age to explain the grace of God. That, Christ, had paid the price (the Cross) to cover the cost of the bill (Life) that came due before God. Jesus became the payment, the final sacrifice. When we accept Christ into our hearts and we pick up our cross and begin to walk the walk, it is God’s Grace, which strengthens us and brings transformation into our lives. God’s grace, His unmerited favor, ushers us into His presence and affords us the opportunity to not only be saved but to know God.
How much do you want to give to God, not for the sake of getting but for the sake of just knowing Him and being reconciled to Him? How can we partake in His grace and heaven, yet never be willing to risk anything or give up anything; sacrifice and to tell others about God and His love and how much He desires for us to be reconciled to Him in all ways. To be a recipient of His love, care, and concern, not being manipulated, and made to feel inferior, but instead loved, desired, understood, and forgiven. That is God’s grace.
My Beloveds, May the spirit of peace and prosperity finds permanent rest in your lives. I decree that every good thing that God has ordained for your life will become evident to you. Do your ways please God? What have you done in your life that has exemplified the love of Christ? We will all stand before the throne of judgment. Have a desire to know God for God and not for what He can do for you or give you. Accept His grace, knowing that Christ’s sacrifice made you worthy. Yes. Come to God as you are, because He accepts you just that way. However, be transformed by the renewing of your mind and the dispensation of God’s grace. The true travesty would be to be in the presence of God and never know who He truly is and who you truly are. Staying the same; stagnated. With access to all things new, but refusing to change because you have become comfortable with how things are and living outside of the knowledge of who God truly is. You are blessed. Now go…and be a blessing!
©2018. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.