Archive for March, 2011

Rebel Without a Cause

Mar 31

by Victoria Robinson

There are many rebels without a cause shown in the Word of God. One who stands out is of course Satan, who took a stand and now will go down in flames for his rebellion. What a price to pay!

The great classic movie, Rebel Without a Cause, has a very emotional bittersweet ending. Of the three teenage friends, sadly the character played by Sal Mineo, Plato, loses his life. The main character, Jim, played by James Dean, reunites with his father after a lengthy troubled relationship. Natalie Wood, who plays Judy, survives the horrific ordeal. Plato died without a cause—unlike some martyrs who gave their life like Stephen who was stoned for the cause of Jesus Christ. There are also many other rebels with a cause who lived unselfish lives for the gospel of Jesus Christ. None are illustrated more beautifully than the bittersweet story of our Lord and Savior’s willingness to give His life for us.

The only rebelliousness we should ever be found guilty of is defying what goes against the Word of God. The apostles Peter and John defied the authorities when they were commanded not to speak in the name of Jesus. They said, “Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God’s sight to obey you rather than God. For we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”

Still, there are plenty of causes that are not worth dying for. Sin is always at the root of a rebellious heart that defies our heavenly Father. In that light we should always understand the Word of God tells us if we cry out to God with a repentant heart there is forgiveness.

Dearest girlfriends, let us be rebels with a cause—the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Some became fools through their rebellious ways and suffered affliction because of their iniquities. They loathed all food and drew near the gates of death. Then they cried to the LORD in their trouble, and he saved them from their distress. He sent forth his word and healed them; he rescued them from the grave. Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men. Let them sacrifice thank offerings and tell of his works with songs of joy. ~ Psalm 107:17- NIV
 
How you have fallen from heaven, O morning star, son of the dawn! You have been cast down to the earth, you who once laid low the nations! You said in your heart, “I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.” But you are brought down to the grave, to the depths of the pit. ~ Isaiah 14:12-15 NIV
 
But these people have stubborn and rebellious hearts; they have turned aside and gone away. They do not say to themselves, ‘Let us fear the LORD our God, who gives autumn and spring rains in season, who assures us of the regular weeks of harvest.’ Your wrongdoings have kept these away; your sins have deprived you of good. ~ Jeremiah 5:23-25 NIV 
 
“See, O LORD, how distressed I am! I am in torment within, and in my heart I am disturbed, for I have been most rebellious. Outside, the sword bereaves; inside, there is only death. ~ Lamentations 1:20 NIV
  
For by his great power he rules forever. He watches every movement of the nations; let no rebel rise in defiance. ~ Psalm 66:7 NLT
 
When they heard this, they were furious and gnashed their teeth at him. But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. “Look,” he said, “I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” At this they covered their ears and, yelling at the top of their voices, they all rushed at him, dragged him out of the city and began to stone him. … While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” Then he fell on his knees and cried out, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” When he had said this, he fell asleep. ~ Acts 7:54-60 NIV
 
Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John replied, “Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God’s sight to obey you rather than God. For we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.” ~ Acts 4:18-20 NIV 
 
Rescue me from my rebellion, for even fools mock me when I rebel. ~ Psalm 39:8 NLT

What You See Is Not What You Get!

Mar 29

by Victoria Robinson

If we live our lives based on what we see with our natural eyes we will never live up to the expectations our heavenly Father has for us. Bad spiritual eyesight causes us to make wrong decisions. David was a young boy without military experience when he boldly went up against the over nine foot tall champion Goliath and won. Had David looked at the situation with his natural eyes, he would have rightly ran away in fear, as all the others before him. Elisha’s servant looked at the siege of horses and chariots surrounding him. His natural eyesight was clear, yet his spiritual eyesight could not have been more blurry. When the Lord opened the servant’s spiritual eyes, he saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around. The Lord was with them in full force!

Girlfriends, what you see is not always what you get! Beware of not seeing your circumstances as the Lord does. The Word of God says we are to live by faith and not by sight. The greek word for faith is pistis which means conviction of the truth. When you are confused by what your natural eyes see, live your life by the conviction of the only truth there is—His unchanging Word! This is how we strengthen our spiritual eyesight.

Dearest girlfriends, I pray we would open our spiritual eyes and see the “hills full of horses and chariots of fire”.

When the servant of the man of God got up and went out early the next morning, an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh, my lord, what shall we do?” the servant asked. “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” And Elisha prayed, “O LORD, open his eyes so he may see.” Then the LORD opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. ~ 2 Kings 6:15-17 NIV
 
David said to Saul, “Let no one lose heart on account of this Philistine; your servant will go and fight him.” Saul replied, “You are not able to go out against this Philistine and fight him; you are only a boy, and he has been a fighting man from his youth.” … Saul said to David, “Go, and the LORD be with you.” Then Saul dressed David in his own tunic. He put a coat of armor on him and a bronze helmet on his head. David fastened on his sword over the tunic and tried walking around, because he was not used to them. “I cannot go in these,” he said to Saul, “because I am not used to them.” So he took them off. Then he took his staff in his hand, chose five smooth stones from the stream, put them in the pouch of his shepherd’s bag and, with his sling in his hand, approached the Philistine. Meanwhile, the Philistine, with his shield bearer in front of him, kept coming closer to David. He looked David over and saw that he was only a boy, ruddy and handsome, and he despised him. He said to David, “Am I a dog, that you come at me with sticks?” And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. “Come here,” he said, “and I’ll give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!” David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the LORD Almighty, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have defied. This day the LORD will hand you over to me, and I’ll strike you down and cut off your head. Today I will give the carcasses of the Philistine army to the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth, and the whole world will know that there is a God in Israel. All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the LORD saves; for the battle is the LORD’s, and he will give all of you into our hands.” As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him. Reaching into his bag and taking out a stone, he slung it and struck the Philistine on the forehead. The stone sank into his forehead, and he fell facedown on the ground. So David triumphed over the Philistine with a sling and a stone; without a sword in his hand he struck down the Philistine and killed him. ~ 1 Samuel 17:32-33,37- 50 NIV 
 
We live by faith, not by sight. ~ 2 Corinthians 5:7 NIV

The Price Is Too High!

Mar 27

by Victoria Robinson

Girlfriends, you were purchased at a high price and to be enslaved by sin is too high of a price for you to pay the enemy to hold you in bondage. The apostle Peter told us we are a slave to whatever controls us. All sin controls us and cost us dearly. Sin always ravages whenever we allow it in. Sounds horrible doesn’t it? Yet because of the high price that bought us out of slavery to sin and death—there is forgiveness. The apostle John reminds us that if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. Now that sounds like a wonderful deal doesn’t it?

Dearest girlfriends, let us stop paying a high price for sin and run to our heavenly Father with a repentant heart and receive His forgiveness and purification.

God purchased you at a high price. Don’t be enslaved by the world. ~ 1 Corinthians 7:23 NLT

… You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. … ~ 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 NLT
 
… For you are a slave to whatever controls you. ~ 2 Peter 2:19 NLT
 
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. ~ 1 John 1:9 NIV
 
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. ~ Galatians 5:1 NIV

Look Before You Leap

Mar 26

by Victoria Robinson

One of the tactics of the enemy is to get us to plunge ahead not using wisdom. Satan will try to trick us into believing we must be hasty and leap into something without knowing all the facts. His line is usually something like, “This is urgent and God needs you to do this immediately.” However, Proverbs has many warnings against such thinking such as, “A prudent person foresees the danger ahead and takes precautions; the simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences.” 

“The Christian who waits for God’s leading, and waits on God’s working, will not be disappointed or ashamed. True faith is not in a hurry until God opens the way. If you find yourself impatiently rushing ahead of the Lord, beware! You are sure to act in fleshly unbelief instead of in true spiritual faith.”
— Warren Wiersbe, The Strategy of Satan

While there are certainly times when we must act quickly, more often we have ample time to seek wisdom and knowledge on the decision. Dearest girlfriends, let us be ladies who look before we leap trusting our heavenly Father to guide us at the right time.

The wise are cautious and avoid danger; fools plunge ahead with great confidence. ~ Proverbs 14:18 NLT
 
A prudent person foresees the danger ahead and takes precautions; the simpleton goes blindly on and suffers the consequences. ~ Proverbs 22:3 NLT
 
It is not good to have zeal without knowledge, nor to be hasty and miss the way. ~ Proverbs 19:2 NIV

Idolizing the One and Only

Mar 25

by Victoria Robinson

We have “cast images” everywhere we look. We just do not always realize what they really are because the “cast images” in our lives never have the appearance of a god. They look more like: wealth, beauty, clothes, or food. Even harmless fun activities can become idols in our life. Anything we find our comfort in other than God is an idol. Dare I say even coffee can become an idol. Yes, my friends and I have been known to worship at the “Church of Barnie’s Coffee & Tea Company”. My favorite coffee which can easily become an idol in my heart! There is nothing wrong with enjoying coffee unless it becomes a “god” to us. Do you find more comfort in your cappuccino than the One and Only true God?

We should not idolize anything or anybody except God and God alone. He is the One and Only! Dearest girlfriends, let us make a careful examination of our lives and throw away the “cast images” we have set up as idols.

You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God … ~ Exodus 20:4-5 NIV

Do not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God. ~ Exodus 34:14 NIV

But as for those who long for idols, I will repay them fully for their sins, says the Sovereign Lord. ~ Ezekiel 11:21 NLT

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. ~ John 1:14 NIV

Only You—A Love Song For Him

Mar 24

by Victoria Robinson

The 1954 classic song, Only You, performed by The Platters certainly has a lot of scriptural truth in it, though maybe not what the writer intended. While this song speaks of a man who loves a woman, the words perfectly characterize the way we should love our Lord. Let us look at these words as a love song to Him, our—Only You!

Only you can make this world seem right
Only you can make the darkness bright
Only you and you alone can thrill me like you do and fill my heart with love for only you
Only you can make this change in me for it’s true, you are my destiny
When you hold my hand I understand the magic that you do
You’re my dream come true my one and only you
One and only you
 
— The Platters 1954
 
It is only the Lord who truly … 
  • Can make this world seem right …
When the earth and all its people quake, it is I who hold its pillars firm. Selah ~ Psalm 75:3 NIV
 
  • Can make the darkness bright …
O Lord, you are my light! You make my darkness bright. ~ 2 Samuel 22:29 TLB
 
  • Can thrill me like He does …
 
You thrill me, Lord, with all you have done for me! I sing for joy because of what you have done. ~ Psalm 92:4 NLT
 
  • Can fill my heart with love for only Him …
And this expectation will not disappoint us. For we know how dearly God loves us, because he has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with his love. ~ Romans 5:5 NLT
 
  • Can make this change in me …
Humans give life to their children. Yet only God’s Spirit can change you into a child of God. ~ John 3:6 CEV 
 
  • Is my destiny …
In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. ~ John 14:2-3 NIV
 
  • Can hold my hand …
If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. ~ Psalm 139:8-10 NIV
 
  • Is my dream come true … 
Praise the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits— who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things … ~ Psalm 103:2-5 NIV

Dearest girlfriends, won’t you make Him your One and Only today!

Letting Go

Mar 19

by Victoria Robinson

As we travel through this life it becomes so easy to hold onto the wrong things. Our priorities can become skewed as we focus only on what surrounds us here on this temporary place called earth. King Solomon imparted these words of wisdom to us when he said, “As a man comes, so he departs, and what does he gain, since he toils for the wind?”

“If we labour in religion, the grace and comfort we get by that labour we may carry away in our hearts, and shall be the better for it to eternity; that is meat that endures. But if we labour only for the world, to fill our hands with that, we cannot take that away with us; we are born with our hands griping, but we die with them extended, letting go what we held fast. So that, upon the whole matter, he may well ask, What profit has he that has laboured for the wind?” — Matthew Henry
The patriarch Abraham let go of the riches and comfort of his homeland and lived in a foreign land in tents because he was focused on a city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God. Girlfriends, are there things in this temporary world you need to let go of? Are you expending all you energy on that which is going to perish? While we need to recognize that our heavenly Father has indeed given us wonderful gifts to enjoy here on earth, we must also fix our eyes on eternity.

Dearest girlfriends, I pray we would let go of that which is temporary and focus on eternity.

Naked a man comes from his mother’s womb, and as he comes, so he departs. He takes nothing from his labor that he can carry in his hand. This too is a grievous evil: As a man comes, so he departs, and what does he gain, since he toils for the wind? ~ Ecclesiastes 5:15-16 NIV

So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. ~ 2 Corinthians 4:18 NIV

By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God. ~ Hebrews 11:8-10 NIV

Friendship at Midnight

Mar 18

by Victoria Robinson

You know you have a true friendship when you can call your friend at midnight. My dearest friend Ann is someone who not only knows she can call late, but actually does! We can talk and laugh at twelve o’clock midnight just as easily as twelve o’clock noon. The truth is every one of us has a “midnight friend”—it is our heavenly Father.

True intimacy in friendship happens in the wee hours of the night. Jesus told the story of a man who went to his friend at midnight to obtain some refreshment of bread for an unexpected guest. I actually have a true friend who supplies me with the refreshment of homemade bread. Iwona makes the most heavenly bread. She starts by grinding her own flour and uses the best ingredients. When we have a bread baking day the rewards are wonderful. I also have the added blessing of her four year-old daughter learning to bake with us. Something that is dear to me, as I have wonderful memories of my precious grandmother teaching me to make bread at an early age.

The friendship Iwona and I share consist of more than just baking bread. She is a true friend who I could turn to in any crisis and I have complete confidence she would be there for me. As wonderful and comforting as that knowledge is, I have an even closer friend who I have total reliance on. Turns out the friend in Jesus’ story was not like my bread baking friend. This friend only relented to help because his friend was persistent and bold when requesting bread.

While the concept of being persistent and bold when we ask of our heavenly Father is an important aspect of this story, the concept of a “midnight friend” is a sweet aspect as well. Your heavenly Father has made it clear that He wants to bestow good gifts to us when we ask.

Dearest girlfriends, let us boldy and persistently ask our heavenly Father to bestow good gifts to us, after all, He is our “midnight friend”!

Then he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and he goes to him at midnight and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread, because a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have nothing to set before him.’ “Then the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children are with me in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ I tell you, though he will not get up and give him the bread because he is his friend, yet because of the man’s boldness he will get up and give him as much as he needs. “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion?  If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!” ~ Luke 11:5-13 NIV 

There are “friends” who pretend to be friends, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. ~ Proverbs 18:24 TLB

Heavenly Control

Mar 16

by Victoria Robinson

God is my copilot. Really girlfriends, do we really want God in the passenger seat? I know when my life is soaring through the skies, (Which aren’t always so friendly!) I want God in the pilot’s seat! So why is it I insist on being the one with the controls in my hands? Pure foolishness! My attitude reminds me of Satan when he said, “I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High.” Hmmm … we can certainly see how well that turned out can’t we?

Jesus made it abundantly clear that EVERYTHING that happens to us has already been approved by our heavenly father. This can be both comforting and yet discomforting all at the same time. In our foolish sin nature we wish to have full control of what takes place in our lives not choosing to trust our creator’s wisdom. Job spoke wisely about the creator when he said, “Whatever he wants to do, he does. So he will do for me all he has planned. He controls my destiny.”

Dearest girlfriends, I pray we would turn over the controls of our lives to the only One who can land us safely.

Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. … ~ Luke 22:31-32 NIV
 
… I will ascend to heaven; I will raise my throne above the stars of God; I will sit enthroned on the mount of assembly, on the utmost heights of the sacred mountain. I will ascend above the tops of the clouds; I will make myself like the Most High. ~ Isaiah 41:13-14 NIV
 
Nevertheless, his mind concerning me remains unchanged, and who can turn him from his purposes? Whatever he wants to do, he does. So he will do for me all he has planned. He controls my destiny. ~ Job 23:1-14 NLT

Your Clouds Are the Dust of His Feet

Mar 15

by Victoria Robinson

The storms of your life come with clouds. The prophet Nahum said, “His way is in the whirlwind and the storm, and clouds are the dust of his feet.” The Lord is there in the midst of your storm clouds.

The Word of God is filled with instances where the Lord is present in clouds. When we are enduring the storm clouds of life it is important to recognize His presence. Girlfriends, He is right there to bring you safely through whatever troubles you are experiencing. Trust in Him when the clouds are so dense you cannot see what your future holds. Nahum goes on to say, “The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him …”

Dearest girlfriends, let us trust in His presence during the storms of life.

… His way is in the whirlwind and the storm, and clouds are the dust of his feet. ~ Nahum 1:3 NIV
 
The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him … ~ Nahum 1:7 NIV 
 
Then the LORD appeared at the Tent in a pillar of cloud, and the cloud stood over the entrance to the Tent. ~ Deuteronomy 31:15 NIV