Sunday, August 25, 2019

"When Love Hinders You"

Reflections4Life™  August 25, 2019
“When Love Hinders You”
“I wish you would put up with a little foolishness from me. Yes, do put up with me. For I am jealous over you with a godly jealousy, because I have promised you in marriage to one husband—to present a pure virgin to Christ. But I fear that, as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your minds may be seduced from a complete and pure devotion to Christ.” 2 Corinthians 11:1-3
Scripture Contemplation: Exodus 25; 34; Deuteronomy 5; 32; Joshua 24; Ezekiel 34; Joel 2; 2 Corinthians 11…

I am pretty certain that some are raising an eyebrow and questioning the title of today’s Reflections. I understand. Because I felt the same way when God gave me the title, well before He explained what He meant. Of course, I trusted Him to do just that. And I also knew that this would be something that would open my eyes and heart, and prayerfully it will for you, too.
I decree that this week’s Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart, mind, and soul. I implore you to take time this week and explore your relationship with the Heavenly Father. Really look at it, and see if you have truly and totally surrendered your absolute all to Him. Ask yourself: Does God have all of my Heart? Am I doing all that I can? Do I trust Him sincerely? Do I really believe what God says about me? Does the Father truly have the number one place in my heart and soul? My only God?
Do you know that feeling you get when you fall in love for the first time? That feeling of free-falling? Always wanting to be in that person’s presence? Wanting to know everything about them? Wanting to share everything and get to know their heart and soul, as well as everything else? Yes. That feeling. That is an awesome thing. It is a wonderful feeling that we can cherish and celebrate. It is also a feeling that we should have towards our God every day. It’s definitely what God has for us; even though He knows us so well, and knows that we will, at some point, become distracted, preoccupied, disenchanted, and even for some—out of love with Him. Yet, we can be certain that the Father’s love for us will never, ever change.
For some of us that love deeply, however, who have such huge hearts, that we find ourselves pouring our love out on so many, and loving some so deeply to distraction—we miss out on our intimate relationship with God. We neglect what should be our number one priority and relationship. When this occurs, slowly but surely, other areas in our life start to take a hit; even if we do not recognize it.
Sadly, many of us do not even realize that we have allowed our earthly relationships to not only hinder our heavenly relationship, but we have given God’s place in our heart to someone else. Even still, there are others who have allowed their earthly love and devotion to become their god, forsaking their relationship with the Heavenly Father.
God is a jealous God. He desires to be number one in our lives. He desires to be our only God. Our covering. Our Savior. Our Healer. Our everything. He yearns for our devotion so that He may bless us in the manner that He desires. He wants to blanket us in His love while protecting us from the machinations of the enemy. God desires our attention, Beloveds. Far too many of us, however, are preoccupied, allowing our horizontal relationships to dictate our vertical relationship and receiving all that God has ordained for our lives.
It is not that God does not want us in relationships or to love anyone else. Not at all. He, however, doesn’t want it to hinder us from all that He has ordained for us while in this world. God wants us to be balanced. To be well rounded. To not be so broken over a man or woman, boy or girl, that we begin to worship the creation instead of the Creator. That we allow the love in our earthly relationships become so consuming, that we are doing any and everything to please, keep and sustain them that there is no room for God. We have abandoned our core and key relationship, chasing after fallible love.
Come on; be honest. How many times have you, or are still so gone in a relationship that it has affected your time with God? How many times has a relationship hindered you from doing all that God has asked of you? When was the last time, your time spent with God, was longer than any of your earthly relationships? Think about it. Really think.
There is nothing wrong with being in love. There is nothing wrong with loving people for who they are and where they are at in life. There is nothing wrong with wanting them to have the very best, and supporting who they are and their dreams. But, what is not all right is neglecting, forgetting, forsaking, and disrespecting God in your life. And please, don't get it wrong; we can also be in this position with our family. Our children, parents, etcetera. Anyone that is placed above God in our actions, reverence, and worship; even if we don't believe so in hearts and minds.
How many times has God reached out to you, but you didn’t hear him? Or, you ignored Him? Or you chose that earthly relationship over being obedient to God and what He has asked of you? Far too many, I might say.
Some of us do not even realize that the love we prayed for, asked God for, has become the very hindrance to God moving in our lives. Don’t get it twisted: Once again, I’m not saying there is anything wrong with loving someone deeply, but it is something wrong when that love causes us to do things out of the will of God and become someone that is not pleasing to God. God will not take a backseat or second place to anyone. He loves us way too much for that.
There are also the times when we love so much and so deeply that we make excuses for certain behaviors that we know is not of God. We accept things that we shouldn’t. Turn a blind eye instead of speaking up. We allow ourselves to be treated in a manner that is not becoming or acceptable unto God. I’m going to say this: DO NOT ALLOW LOVE FOR SOMEONE ON THIS EARTH TO MAKE YOU FORFEIT WHAT GOD HAS ORDAINED FOR YOUR ABUNDANT LIFE. Do not allow yourself to be treated in any kind of manner; like sheep being led to the slaughter by the enemy in disguise. Don’t allow the enemy to darken or taint a gift from God by you choosing to worship the creation and no longer the Creator.
My Beloveds, may the spirit of peace and prosperity find permanent rest in your lives. I decree that every good thing that God has ordained for your life will become evident to you. Take a step back and evaluate your heart and motives. Give God what belongs to Him, and He will continue to do what He has always done for you: Love you unconditionally. Maintain a healthy balance by first seeking God for all things, and allowing God the honor to be not only your covering but to be your all in all. You are blessed. Now go…and be a blessing!
©2019. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, August 18, 2019

"Brand New"

Reflections4Life August 18, 2019
Brand New”
Then He who sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, 'Write, for these words are true and faithful.'” Revelation 21:5
Scripture Contemplation: Isaiah 43:18-20; Jeremiah 31:30-32; Philippians 1:6; 1 John 1:6-8...

©Ruthe McDonald.
     It's a new day! A new beginning; a fresh start. Each day is a fresh start when we are blessed to wake up. When you yield to God, He makes you brand new; brand new heart, brand new mind, brand new sight, a brand new life.
     I decree that this week's Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart, mind, and soul. Allow Jesus to cleanse your heart and soul from old baggage that has been weighing you down. Allow the Lord to make you brand new all over—your heart and mind. This is a new day with new opportunities. God has given you a reset. What are you going to do with it?
     Do you recall how it feels to get something brand new? The feeling of something fresh and new is exciting! I think about those of us who, growing up, had to wear hand-me-downs, and the first time you were able to buy something new just for you. How did that feel? Wonderful, didn't it?
     What about that feeling you have after a storm in your life has passed, or you let go of things that should have been let go of a long time ago? Or, when you clean out your house of all those old things, or you walk into a brand new home? Exhilarating!
     That is what a relationship with the Father is like. He makes all things new. He comes into our lives (the home of our hearts) and makes all things new. He cleanses us and gives us the opportunity to see things through fresh eyes, a clean heart, through His eyes. God has given us a reset button for our lives when he grants us a brand new day. What a precious gift to be given by our Heavenly Father. To be alive with the chance to do things over!
     Yes. There are consequences for all of our actions. Our sinful behavior has repercussions. The sinful and wrong acts of others can have devastating effects on innocent people's lives. Yet, when we come to God, He gives a new perspective, a new determination, and new grace to help us walk and get through the consequences of those actions. We will have a brand new mindset, and a brand new start at a new life, where we can walk in His love and guidance, and in obedience to His will. Yesterday cannot be changed but how we do things today can be.
      It's a brand new day, and God desires to do brand new things in your life for today. Aren't you tired? Aren't you tired of promising yourself something different, only to find yourself in old habits, doing the same thing over and over, never feeling complete or whole? Then yield to the Father. Allow the cleansing blood of Jesus to restore you, and reset your life clock. Allow Him to elevate you. To erase your past, and bring you into the future He has ordained for you.
     There are lessons we can take from our past, but we do not have to linger feeling sorry for ourselves, reliving what we did, wishing we would have done something different. No matter how you try, you do not have the ability to change your past. Only God can do that. But what you do have is the ability to move forward, and live a life that is filled with hope and expectations for greatness. You have the opportunity to walk in a brand new mindset, with brand new insight, and brand new determination. All you have to do is believe and walk the path that God has ordained for you.
      We are not limited by our past experiences. Our past and any mistakes do not determine the entirety of our life. What WE do right now and believe in our heart, determines our life. The choice is ours. We can either reach towards God and receive what He has. Or, we can linger in the past, and allow the whispers of the enemy to taunt us, and cripple us from moving forth. The choice is ours.
Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
John 5:5-9 Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years. 6 When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?” 7 The sick man answered Him, “Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; but while I am coming, another steps down before me.” 8 Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.” 9 And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked.
     There is brand new life waiting for you every day God grants you to wake up. A brand new mindset. Brand new experiences. Brand new joy and anointing each and every day. So what are you going to do? Are you going to stay stuck in the past? Or, are you going to reach forth and touch the hem of His garment? Are you going to have faith and believe what God says about you? The choice is yours. There is a brand new life with your name on it. The life that God has ordained for you before the existence of time. And all you have to do is believe, have faith, and receive. God has already declared and decreed it!
Isaiah 65:24 “It shall come to pass that before they call, I will answer; And while they are still speaking, I will hear.
      My Beloveds, I decree that the spirit of peace and of prosperity has found permanent rest in every area of your life. Let God create in you a clean heart, and a right spirit, and a renewed mind. Let the Blood of Christ reset your life clock, so that you may live a life that is full of love, grace, purpose, peace, and the joy of the Lord. You are so very blessed. Now go... and be a blessing!
©2019. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, August 04, 2019

"See The Good"

Reflections4Life August 4, 2019

"See the Good"

         “Thus says the Lord who made it, the Lord who formed it to establish it (the Lord is His name): ‘Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know."  Jeremiah 33:2-3

Scripture Contemplation: Joshua 1; Jeremiah 33; Daniel 6; Romans 8; Hebrews 11 ...

(c) Ruthe McDonald

        Far too often our focus is on the negative. Especially concerning ourselves. But that's because we live in a world that tends to highlight what's wrong more than they celebrate what's right. Can you imagine a news service that would deliver at least two news stories for every bad news report? Would it make a difference? I don't know. But I do believe that whatever you put into the atmosphere is constantly being regurgitated and manifested back onto the earth.

       I decree that this week's Reflections will be a continued source of encouragement and inspiration for your heart mind and soul. Let the Lord God touch your eyes--spiritually and physically--that you may see as He sees. Let His words be a soothing balm to your heart and mind. Let God's vision become more than a word or hope; allow it to become your truth, as you grow in your trust and truth in the Father.

       So, what if we decided to charge the atmosphere every single day with the good that we see? Sure. I hear you: "Are you serious, Rue? Don't you see all this hate and crazy stuff going on? And you want us to see the good?" Yes. I know you know, and even those doing the bad know that there are horrific things taking place. But I firmly believe that bad wouldn't exist without good being present. So, there is good around, if we would train ourselves to see it. 

      Are you telling me there is no good in your family? There is nothing good happening in your life, in the life of at least one person you know? Do you mean to tell me that you didn't see the sunrise or the sunset and you still made it alive to the next day?

      Don't think so hard about seeing the good. See the good in people before you immediately start ticking off the bad traits. See the good in the situation; how things could be turned around and the situation used as a learning lesson. See the good in people before making the decision to write someone off based on a bad first impression.

      My Beloveds, I decree that the spirit of peace and prosperity will be evident in every area of your life. I challenge you this week ahead to see the good. To find the good. To speak of the good. To point out the good. To charge the atmosphere of the good. And, to expect the good. Expect something good to happen to you each day. Anticipate it, Look for it. Be it. Be good. You are blessed. Now go...and be a blessing!

©2019. Ruthe McDonald. All Rights Reserved.