Sunday, August 25, 2013

Reflections4Life: Are You A Joseph?

Reflections4Life August 25th, 2013
Are You A Joseph?”
And the Lord will make you the head and not the tail; you shall be above only, and not be beneath, if you heed the commandments of the Lord your God, which I command you today, and are careful to observe them.” Deuteronomy 28:13
Scripture Contemplation: Genesis 37; 41; 42; Deuteronomy 28; Psalm 37; Matthew 6; Philippians 4...
There are those of us that dream big. Our vision is far beyond what most can even imagine—even family members. And when we begin to share what is in our hearts, more often than not, we will find opposition rather than agreement.
I declare and decree that this week's Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and food for your heart, mind, and soul. Be bold in your walk in God. Declare and decree the things that God has spoken of you. Do not back down to opposition, but know that it will come. Let it strengthen you and cause you to seek the Lord even more. God desires to use you; even in the lives of those that have opposed you and hurt you.
Are you a Joseph? Did God give you a vision, a dream that is far beyond what you could have ever imagined? Did you share that dream and vision with your loved ones and be looked at as though you were insane? Did your vision cause disruption, bring opposition, cause you to see less than the favorable side of character of your loved ones? If you answered yes to any of these, then you are a Joseph!
Genesis 37:5-11 5 Now Joseph had a dream, and he told it to his brothers; and they hated him even more. 6 So he said to them, “Please hear this dream which I have dreamed: 7 There we were, binding sheaves in the field. Then behold, my sheaf arose and also stood upright; and indeed your sheaves stood all around and bowed down to my sheaf.” 8 And his brothers said to him, “Shall you indeed reign over us? Or shall you indeed have dominion over us?” So they hated him even more for his dreams and for his words. 9 Then he dreamed still another dream and told it to his brothers, and said, “Look, I have dreamed another dream. And this time, the sun, the moon, and the eleven stars bowed down to me.” 10 So he told it to his father and his brothers; and his father rebuked him and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall your mother and I and your brothers indeed come to bow down to the earth before you?” 11 And his brothers envied him, but his father kept the matter in mind.
Wow! Talk about hating! But those of us who have been walking in the Lord, and have been walking in obedience understand that “haters” will come; even in our own family. It always seems to be the ones closest to us, the ones we love the most.
Here is what I have come to understand and know for sure: God will use the opposition to propel us into the position that we need to be in, in order for His vision and purpose in our life to come to pass. What's the saying: haters are going to hate? Well it's true. Yet, God is still God, and there is nothing that can stop the will and plan of God for our lives from coming to fruition, unless we remove ourselves or walk away from the Lord, and walk in disobedience.
God will and has used the enemy to catapult us into the place in which we need to be, so that He may bless us as He desires. Let's face it; there are some things about our character and our behavior that can be a hindrance to what God desires to make happen in our lives. There are some things about ourselves that need to be checked before we can walk in the fullness of God, and the visions that He has given to us.
Being a Joseph is more than just being someone that has dreams and a vision. It is more than just being hated upon and receiving opposition from those closest to you. Being a Joseph is being able to go through the process of being stripped of your flaws, of human pride, of being made humbled, and learning to look to God for all things, and not making a move until God says so.
In being a Joseph, it is not just coming from the “pit to the palace” like so many have preached. No. It is being able to withstand what happens in the middle; the process between the pit and the palace, and the ability to rise above hurt feelings, not yielding to emotions, and walking in the anointing of God, full of forgiveness and kindness; being able to be in the position to bring aid to the very ones that tried to destroy you, and left you for dead, without holding animosity. The ability to love in spite of and not because of. Being a Joseph is allowing the Christ in you to rise up and live.
Is that you today? Have you been rejected, scoffed at, opposed, lied on, falsely accused, deserted, abandoned by your family, sold out for money, left for dead, outcast, imprisoned, forgotten, despised; but you still dream, you still have vision, you're still holding on to what God has spoken to you, you still love those that hurt you?
Is this you? Then know this: God has anointed you today. He has chosen you to stand and to be the person in your family that brings healing and aid to them. God is using YOU; the one thought the least of; the one rejected, and abandoned to bring about healing and deliverance to the very ones that hurt you the most.
Don't allow the process to rob you of your vision or belief. Do not allow the rejection and opposition of those you love to deter you, or stop you from trusting and believing God. Joseph was given a gift from God. God trusted Joseph to go through what he went through, knowing that He could trust Joseph, and use him for His glory, and to bring salvation to a nation.
Joseph was a spoiled and prideful child. He was favored of Jacob. Jacob doted upon him, and that caused friction and jealousy amongst his brothers. Yet, there was something special about Joseph. And God used the actions of Joseph's brothers to bring about a plan that would cause a maturity and strength in Joseph that was needed. It caused the man in Joseph to rise; the visionary to come forth. It caused Joseph to call upon his God in a land that knew not his God. Joseph became a blessing even in the enemy's camp. God promoted him within to bless those without.
Know this beloved: whatsoever it is you are faced with today, do not allow it to keep you from seeking God and believing in what God has spoken to you. No matter how long the wait for the manifestation; continue to walk in the knowledge and preparation that today is the day that it comes to pass. Be ready. Forgive those that have hurt you, rejected you, opposed you. And learn to say thank you to your haters. For God is using them to propel you where He has ordained you to be, from the beginning.
I decree that the spirit of peace and of prosperity has found a permanent rest in your lives: spiritually, physically, emotionally, mentally, socially, and financially. Are you a Joseph? Continue to believe in the Lord and His purpose and plan for your life. Let God use you. You are the instrument that God has chosen to bless your family; to bring deliverance to a nation. Forgive. Love. And move forward in the Lord. He has anointed you to go through, and you are victorious! You are Blessed! Now go...and Be that Blessing!

©2013. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved. 

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Keep Believing!


There is going to come a time when you are going to have to lay everything on the line. You will come to a place where you are going to have to choose to believe regardless to what you can see with your natural eyes. You will have to come to the decision to trust God where you cannot trace Him. To believe His word and His promises to you, just as much as you believe in the air that surrounds you keeps you breathing. Even when EVERYONE around you has failed you and let you down; even when those you love and trust wound you the deepest; even when you have given it your all and you are totally spent—you are going to come to place when you know, without a doubt, that this is what true faith is really about. Believing God to do just what He said, no matter how long the answers take.

I give God the praise for answered prayer. I am here to tell you. YES YOU!!! The one who has stopped believing. The one who has given up. The one who has lost faith. The one who cannot see a tomorrow. GOD is real, and He answers prayers. He may not answer you in the way you were expecting. He may not move on your time table. The blessings may not be in the form you are expecting. But you can best believe—God is answering.

I thank the Lord tonight for holding me when I felt I was losing control. For keeping me sane when I thought my mind would go. For protecting my heart when I thought it would bleed out. For charging and stirring my faith, and for directing my path, and for putting up with all my questions, and loving me in spite of. I thank the Lord for loving me so. I thank Him for His directions; His instructions for His perfect plan.

God is amazing. This journey of life is beyond whatever I can imagine. And I thank God for every, single moment He grants me upon this earth. God gave me some instructions. He told me exactly what to do. Even in my uncertainty, I just followed through. Hey, He's God! He has a proven track record! Step by step, I obeyed. One week passed. Then two. A month came and gone, and nothing. FOUR MONTHS, and it came to pass! THANK YOU JESUS! God did that thing!

I encourage you to hold on and keep believing. No matter how long the wait; believe in what God has spoken. Follow His instructions. Do exactly what He says, how He says to do it. Trust: God knows just what He is doing!

Ruthe McDonald


Sunday, August 18, 2013

Reflections4Life: Let The Healing Begin

Reflections4Life August 18th, 2013
Let The Healing Begin”
He healeth the broken in heart, And bindeth up their wounds.” Psalm 147:3
Scripture Contemplation: 2 Chronicles 7:14; Job 5; Psalm 30:2; 147; Luke 9; John 5; 1 Peter 2:24
Many of us are walking around with wounded hearts, wounded souls, wounded spirits. Our wounds are so deep and so painful, that they are affecting our physical and mental health. Today is your day to let the healing begin. God has called for you to be made whole. He desires to heal every wound, bring peace to your heart and mind, and wholeness to you once again. Will you allow Him that today?
I decree and declare that this week's Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart, mind and soul. This is your day to be healed. This is the hour for your healing to manifest. For, you to receive the wholeness that you have been seeking, and the answers to your prayers.
Not accepting or living the truth can cause pain and deep wounds. A lie is never good. Whether we are telling a lie to others, or to ourselves, or if we cannot accept the truth or live our truth; we are creating not only wounds in ourselves, but wounds in others. The truth will always set us free; even if the truth is painful. As well, we really have no control over other people's actions. People will be people, and their actions can and do affect others. The consequences of other people's actions can often bring hurt, harm, and deep wounds for those of us that are apart of their lives, or who are innocently in the vicinity of what's taking place.
God desires for us to be whole and to walk in our healing. He desires to bind up every wound and restore our hearts and our faith. Yet, the healing process doesn't always look like we expect it to. And, the healing process itself can be sometimes painful. However, with God on our side, we can and will make it through to the other side of the pain and wounds, and walk in our healing and deliverance.
Truth Be Told
The truth can hurt, but it is also healing and liberating. There is a truth that has to be spoken and realized. We must be in a place to hear God's truth concerning ourselves and others. Many of the wounds we have, have been inflicted by our own actions. When we do not accept the truth, or receive what God is saying and have been disobedient, we open ourselves to the consequences; consequences that could have been avoided had we listened to God and received His truth.
How many of us can testify to doing the opposite of what God spoke to our hearts? I can. How often has the Father spoke the truth to our spirit concerning a person, place or thing, but we ignored His warning and truth, and allowed our flesh and emotions to lead us on a path that was not ordained by God? Do recall the truth He was telling us about that man, or woman? How about that road not to follow, or that job not to take, or that advice not to follow? Yes. God has spoken to us many a time, trying to keep us from harms way. But we rejected His truth, because we allowed our flesh to overrule the spirit. And because of this, we are faced with the consequences of our actions. And it is indeed a painful and hurtful lesson that we often learn. Leaving us with scars and wounds. And for some, the scars and wounds are so deep, that we have a hard way of seeing our way out.
Repent. That is the beginning of your healing. And as you deal with the consequence of your actions, learn to forgive yourself. Stop beating yourself up. God has forgiven you, and it is time to forgive yourself so that your healing can fully manifest. Don't allow the enemy to hold your past against you. In whatever form he comes in: your thoughts, people, memories—move forward with the confidence that God has forgiven you, and you have a brand new day ahead of you, with the life lessons you have gained to keep you from making the same choices.
Forgiveness Is Key
Perhaps you have been wounded by someone you love. Maybe you have been wounded by the church or those professing to know the Lord, and you find yourself unable to trust anyone. Give that to God also. Chances are great that we will not escape this life without being wounded or greatly disappointed by someone we love and hold in high regards. If it happened to Jesus, then you can believe that it will happen to you, too.
Forgive. Forgive that person for what they have done to you. Not for them, but for yourself. I can tell you now; that person or persons may never change. They may continue to be who they are. But you do not have to allow yourself to be bound any longer by their actions. When we do not forgive, those emotions begin to foster bitterness and anger in our heart and soul. And once bitterness and anger unchecked takes up residence, it blocks us from receiving what God has ordained for us. It blocks our blessings, and immobilizes us. We cannot move forward, and become stuck in a place and time. All the while, the person who has hurt you has moved on.
Free yourself. Understand that hurt people hurt people. And chances are good that if you hold on to that pain and anger, and you do not forgive, you will become just like that person and begin to hurt others; whether you meant to or not. It is a debilitating cycle that can be cut off with your one decision to forgive.
A Painful Process
Beloved, you are right on the edge of your breakthrough. You are closer than you think to your healing manifesting, and your prayers being answered. How can I be so certain? Because I have been where you are more than once. Because I know that God desires you to be whole and complete, and your prayers to be answered.
Have you ever had a wound that when you went to the doctor, the treatment for the wound seemed to cause more pain? Or, what about a broken arm, leg or nose? Oftentimes for correct healing to take place, the doctor has to either reset or break the bone again in order for proper healing to take place. It is very painful, but in the end, the bones or the nose heals properly.
You've listened, and have been obedient. You have accepted the truth, told the truth, repented, and even have forgiven. But still, the pain lingers and the heart still aches. The Father says to you today: let the healing begin. Part of the healing process can be painful and uncomfortable.
It is a process, beloved. But you can be assured that God is there with you. And He is bringing you through. And once you set in your heart and mind following what God has spoken, and to believe what He has spoken to you; your tests will soon be your testimonies. Those wounds will become a banner by which you can tell another brother or sister that God will do the same for them, as He did for you. So, do not give up. Though the pain seems unbearable right now, know that God will do just what He said, and He is bringing you through this, making you stronger, and wiser for the purpose He has ordained for your life.
I decree that the spirit of peace and of prosperity has found permanent rest in your life: spiritually, physically, emotionally, mentally, socially, and financially. Be encouraged. Your healing has begun. Let the truth be in your heart and mouth. Walk in forgiveness. Trust the process. God knows just what He is doing. Be made whole today by the truth of what God has spoken to you. You are Blessed. Now go...and Be a Blessing!
©2013. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Reflectiosn4Life: "Words of Encouragement"

Reflections4Life August 11th, 2013
A Word of Encouragement”
And David was greatly distressed, for the people spoke of stoning him because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters; but David encouraged himself in the Lord his God.” 1 Samuel 30:6
Scripture Contemplation:Joshua 1; Romans 1;12; 15:5; 2 Corinthians 7;Ephesians 6:22; 1Thessalonians 4; 5; Hebrews 13...
Be encouraged! Be encouraged! Be encouraged! Know that the Father in Heaven has not forgotten or abandoned you. Stand firm and know within your heart, that the fulfillment of His word in your life is soon coming to pass.
I declare and decree that this week's Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart, mind, and soul. Be encouraged today through the word of God. Stand on His word and promises. Encourage yourself in the word this week, and do not let go of what God has spoken concerning your life.
How much weight does the word of God hold in your life? How much power does it hold for you? For so many, we have forgotten the word of God. We have long forgotten the promises He has made unto us because the trials of this life have overwhelmed us. We have become discouraged with the passing of time; believing that if what God said was going to happen, it should have happened by now. And because of these thoughts, we prolong the manifestations of His word coming to pass in our lives.
The spirit of discouragement has seized many of hearts. So much so that we have lost sight of the promises of God. We have become lax in our intimate time with God. We no longer read or study the word, or go before Him in prayer. Our internal conversations have become one of doubt and negativity.
It is so very easy to lose our sight when we take our eyes off of God. We live in a world that is ruled by negativity. It thrives on destruction and bad news. Seldom do we see things of encouragement outweighing that of negative feedback. This creates a bleak picture. And should we dwell on these things, we too will soon have a negative outlook and give up on what God has promised us.
I want to encourage you today to stand strong on the promises of God. Do not give in to your feelings. Emotions are subject to change. They are like a pendulum that can swing either way depending upon the current winds. Stand firm in your faith. Do not go by what it looks like or feels like. But instead, walk and go by the word of God and what He has spoken concerning you.
Surround yourself with positive energy. Surround yourself with like-minded people. It is a fact that when we continue to associate with negative people, we tend to be influenced more by their negativity than they are by our positivity.
Speak to your heart and to the atmosphere the promises of God. Say it out loud each and every day. Write it out. Put it in places that you can see so that you will be constantly reminded of what God has said concerning you.
Beloved, the enemy, our adversary, is continually seeking to destroy us. He lies in wait waiting to pounce on us at any given sign of an opening. He presses in on all sides, whispering lies into our ears, stirring up controversy and negativity, and often coming as an angel of light to deceive us. His goal is to move us; to move us out of a position of receiving what God has ordained for us. He wants us destroyed, busted, broken, and out of focus.
1 Peter 5:8 “Be sober, be watchful: your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour...”
1 John 10:10 “The thief cometh not, but that he may steal, and kill, and destroy: I came that they may have life, and may have it abundantly.”
Beloved, the enemy has already lost! And he knows this! But he will use every weapon in his arsenal to come at us and try to get us to forfeit the blessings and promises of God. His mission is to steal, kill, and destroy. To steal your dreams and visions; to kill you before you had the chance to live; to destroy your happiness and your peace of mind and your will to go forward! Don't you let him do that when God came to give you life, and life abundantly!
This life, even through its challenges and adversities, was meant to be lived with joy and love and hope! God sent Jesus for this purpose: that you would have eternal life. That, you would be redeemed by His blood. And that, on this earth, while we tarry, we would live an abundant life filled with love, joy, peace, and grace; even in the midst of the trials that come our way.
Be encouraged today. Be encouraged that troubles don't last always, and that joy comes in the morning! Be confident in the promises of God. Stay firmly planted in the word of God. Do not slack in your intimate time with the Father! It is your key to holding on and forging ahead through all the crap the enemy tries to send your way. For, those that keep their mind stayed on Christ will be kept in perfect peace. And those that stay at the feet of Jesus, know and understand that the battle is not ours, it is the Lord's!
Beloved, God got us! He has us. Yes; the devil is going to try everything he can do to discourage you and try to knock you off the path of righteousness. And if he could, he would take you out and destroy everything you ever hoped and believed for, and have you believe that he is the winner and you are the loser! But glory to God! The devil remains a liar, and we have already won! The enemy has no power except the power you give him. Stand your ground against the devil. Be encouraged in the word and promises of God. Keep your focus on God and not the circumstances, and stand firm in the word of God! He got you!
The Father is not slacking concerning His promises to you! He is answering. The manifestations are taking place. And know that God has already declared you the winner. I've read the book, and I know that we win!
I decree that the spirit of peace and of prosperity has found permanent rest in your lives: spiritually, physically, emotionally, mentally, socially, and financially. Be encouraged today! Stand firm on the word of God. Do not give in to the taunts and lies of the enemy. Continually speak the word of God, and let Jesus answer the door when the enemy comes knocking! Believe the report of the Lord! You win! You are Blessed! Now go...and Be a Blessing!

©2013. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, August 04, 2013

Reflections4Life: Call Unto God

Reflections4Life August 4th, 2013
Call Unto God”
This is God’s Message, the God who made earth, made it livable and lasting, known everywhere as God: ‘Call to me and I will answer you. I’ll tell you marvelous and wondrous things that you could never figure out on your own.” Jeremiah 33:2-3 MSG
Scripture Contemplation:Judges 16:27-29; 2 Samuel 22; 1 Kings 18; Psalm 18;37; Hebrews 5:6-8...
Have you ever had those times in your life when you are so overwhelmed and you just do not know what to do or where to go? I know I have. And it is in those times that I cry out even the more, and call unto my God who I know has the answers. Even if the answers are not the ones I was expecting or recognize.
I declare and decree that this week's Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart, mind, and soul. Call unto God and He will answer you. Go before Him with an open heart, and allow Him to fill you and direct your paths. Trust Him; He knows what is best for you. Learn to trust Him where you cannot trace Him.
There are just times when we really do not know which way to go. We do not see a way out of our situation. Many have come to the end of their ropes and are just about ready to let go and give up. Don't! Do not let go unless you are letting it all go into the hands of God! Do not give up and walk away and do something that you may regret because the road ahead of you seems to be so dark, or the road you're on just seems to be too much to bear. God has you, beloved! He has you, and this is where you must call unto Him, and believe that He will answer you and deliver you. You just have to believe and hold on. Even in the darkness.
Isaiah 65:24 “Before they call out, I’ll answer. Before they’ve finished speaking, I’ll have heard.”
God has you, beloved. He knows all about you. He has answered your prayers before you even asked them. Before you even finish speaking it, He has already heard you. How many of us truly believe that God has heard our prayers and that He is answered? How many of us can honestly say that our level of faith is still in the same place when we encounter very difficult times? Or, when we have been waiting and waiting for the promises to come to pass? Has your faith grown or faltered? Tough times will come, and they will try your faith and bring forth what's really in your heart.
I love the Lord. I love Him with every fiber of my being. And I am the first to admit that there were times when my faith was shaken. It wasn't taken, but it was definitely shaken. From all that I had endured, and all the heartache and tests and trials; I began to wonder if I missed something? Was there something that I wasn't doing? Did I miss the mark? Was my faith really not strong enough? Then the Lord let me know, that there are times when our faith will be tested. We will go through moments of stretching and pain, and grief, but we must know to call unto Him, and allow Him to stretch our faith, and grow our faith in these times of adversity.
The saying is true: No pain, no gain. Even in our walk with the Lord. Jesus was not exempt, and neither will we be. There will be trials and hard times in this life. However, they will never outweigh the love and joy and the victory that is in this life, if we would believe and hold on and trust God. And learn to call unto Him first and foremost. Our faith is strengthened through adversity. The tests and trials allow us to see what is in our hearts and what we truly believe.
Do you call unto God first when something happens, and you don't know what to do? Or, do you seek the counsel of man, asking your family, friends, counselors, etc., for answers and direction? Our first call should be unto God. He is there waiting for us to just ask Him; to call upon His name and seek Him so that He may show us what to do; where to go, and what steps to take, and even whose counsel to seek.
So often, God is the last one we call upon. We often go to God last, after we have gone to everyone else seeking for the answers that only God has. We must learn to go to God first in all things; whether they be big or small, we need to take them all to the Lord. We must seek out God; seek His will and answers concerning our lives and the road we need to be taking. God should be the first stop, not the last.
I know this, beloved, that God has something wonderful to tell us when we come to Him. He has the answers that we seek, to the questions in our lives. He has the solutions to the difficulties we may be facing. And He wants to be our first call so that He may direct our paths and lead us to the right place and people. If only we would trust the counsel of God and believe that He has what is best.
I know for certain that the enemy revels in the fact when we do not seek out God. For even He knows that those who seek first the Kingdom of Heaven will be privy to his machinations, and less likely to fall for his lies and traps. I know it can be difficult to hear or see your way out when everything seems to be going the opposite of what we have believed and hoped for. I also know the pain and hurt that comes when it seems like you can never seem to get away from heartache, trials, and tests; feeling as though just when one ends, here comes another one, threatening to take the very life out of you.
I say to you, beloved, stand strong and call unto God. Tell Him everything that is in your heart and soul. God can handle it! He is big and mighty God. And once you are finishing pouring out, be still and listen. God is going to answer you and He is going to show you some things that will give you exactly what you need to make it through. I'll be honest with you: He will not stop the tests, but He will direct you and tell you how to get through and how to come out stronger and wiser. He will also give you something so phenomenal to hold on to, that it will stir your faith, and give you the very ammunition that you need to defeat and destroy the enemy once and for all. You just need to be certain that God is your first call and not your last.
Troubles will come. Storms will arise. But I can promise you this: God will have you through it all. Put your trust in Him, and do not go by what it appears to be, but what God has spoken it to be. Lean not on your own understanding, but put all your trust in God who loves you more than anything and anyone.
Proverbs 3:5-6 “Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding. In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths.”
I decree that the spirit of peace and of prosperity has found a permanent place in your lives: spiritually, physically, emotionally, mentally, socially, and financially. Let God be your first call. Trust Him to lead you to where you cannot trace Him. Be confident in the Lord, knowing that He has not abandoned you, but has only the best for you. Don't try to figure things out on your own. Go to God, and allow Him to speak to your heart and show you marvelous and wondrous things. You are Blessed. Now go...and Be a Blessing!

©2013. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.