Hearts hardened, ears plugged, eyes shut

Before I spoke my testimony last night I was given a word by a friend who had been praying for me – it was really a picture that had come into his mind from Isaiah 6:6 of the burning coal being touched to the lips.  I felt anointed to speak for God after that and it was a great feeling.

After the testimony I was disappointed when one member of the congregation came to me and started talking about her gay friends who had faith.  She was telling me how it was good that God had told me this was his path for me but that God calls each of us differently, basically that they were happy to continue in their physical relationship as they felt this was God’s calling on them.

I was initially shocked, had she not heard what I was saying, after all sin is sin, it’s not like God picks and chooses who can carry out a sin and who can’t.

Today having read the whole of Isaiah 6 I see that God calls us to speak out, but it doesn’t necessarily mean people will listen to what we say.  But that is our calling and as soon as we say, here I am Lord, send me, then we are putting ourselves into God’s hands and are not to worry about the outcome, that is for God, we are simply his servants.

BURNING COALS

Burning coals, refiners fire, the touch of God which inspires us to share his word, to share our story, all aimed at bringing God the glory, my eyes unveiled to the truth, yet some listen carefully but don’t understand, some watch closely yet learn nothing, hearts hardened, ears plugged, eyes shut, how long oh Lord, how long before they see the way, how many days until they turn away from their sinful ways, how long before their ministry reflects your divinity, may your words work through me, may you set them free from the lies of the enemy, may they hear the truth and feel the love, may they know your perfect ways oh Lord, may they feed from your word, receive from the Spirit, may they receive your blessings as they work their way through it.

How tragic if my story was buried for fear of human judgement

I’m giving my testimony next Sunday and I suppose it’s true to say that for a brief while I allowed the enemy to get into my head, “be careful, you don’t want to upset or offend anyone”.  Speaking to a trusted friend she quickly corrected that lie and sent me an article on strongholds.  Oh yes, Satan you are not going to shut me up, I am going to speak and I am going to speak from my overflow, from my passion, and I am going to share my story for the Glory of God.  The Lord is building his church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.  If I offend through speaking God’s truth, so be it, but my prayer is that through speaking the truth I will help others to see God’s amazing grace and love and how they too can receive this for themselves.

Matthew 16:18 – And I tell you that you are Peter and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.

BUILD YOUR CHURCH

Build your church Lord, build your church on love and truth, build your church to be strong and fearless, to show Satan that we mean business, this is war, this is a battle and I mean to rattle his cage as I stand on that stage and give voice to the truth,  no longer smoothing over the cracks with kind words, no longer scared to speak up and speak out telling others what God’s all about, that his word is the truth and how tragic if my story was buried because of a fear of human judgement, nothing would please the enemy more than to see me back out of this war, and that’s not the way it’s going to be, God set me free, transformed to transform, not here to conform to the patterns of this world, here to serve, here to shine God’s light into the world, speaking his word as he spoke to me, inspiring others with my story.

A fearless testifier of his desire to save all nations

I read some wise words this morning that spoke to me:

“We need to know and understand the people we want to witness to, in order to be sensitive and appropriate to their world view and needs”

I think this is so true.  In many ways we can and should be a witness to anyone we meet however are we more effective when we witness to people we empathise with or we understand better?  Are we more effective when witnessing to friends and family or work colleagues than to strangers?  And are we called to witness to people who have a similar background to us, maybe we knew them before we became Christians or maybe it’s a “group” that we relate to, so for me it feels like one group I relate well to is “Prodigals” those who grew up in Christian homes then turned away from God.

Sometimes (quite often!) we need to be bold when witnessing and often we can be fearful of the reaction we will get and how we may answer questions or criticism.  But the Bible makes it clear we should not worry because God himself will give you words and wisdom than none of your enemies can resist or contradict. How awesome is this verse?

Luke 21:13 – 15 – And so you will bear testimony to me. But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves.  For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict.

WORDS AND WISDOM

Do not worry, don’t be anxious about how to handle reactions you think will be fractious, make up your mind to only find good in your witness, accept your fitness to serve God as a fearless testifier of his desire to save all nations, approach your task with elation, joy overflowing cos you are showing others what love looks like, striking at the heart of the matter so maintain your swagger you are the child of a King, stirring up passion so that others can cash in on God’s amazing gifts, lifting up God’s name, increasing his fame, igniting flames of power and glory, sharing your story, your testimony a light in the darkness breaking through to burdened hearts, reaching parts that others cannot reach, breaching the barriers as carriers of God’s great message, a vessel for God who will give you the words and the wisdom that can never ever be contradicted.

Loneliness…let the battle commence

Have found the testimony of Michelle X Smith online.  I identify closely with her having a very similar background, church goer as a child, discovering my homosexual feelings, feeling that God could never love me and therefore taking a massive step away from God and then after many years God drawing me back to him and seeing the immense love and forgiveness he has for me, my realisation of the need to be obedient to him and ultimately gaining my salvation.

Reading her testimony has been an amazing experience, for the first time ever I feel like someone else “gets it”.  Someone else like me who understands all the difficulties, the almost forced separation from God and from family because of my sexuality the internal battles that raged and the frustration now with a church that seeks to water down scriptures.

Whilst I am surrounded by love and support, at times I still feel alone, the battles still rage in my head from time to time, the enemy taunting me with my past and with my future, am I good enough to serve God, could I ever be a role model, are people bothered about my story.. well I have news for you Satan – God made me, God has plans for me and God’s going to use me whether you like it or not, I am victorious, I am saved, I am changed and I am not going to be held down any longer.

BATTLE TIME

Loneliness…let the battle commence, let’s silence the voices in my head that take great pleasure in dissing me, telling me that I am not worth it, insignificant, never gonna make the cut, cut it out Satan it’s you who’s defeated, you were beaten before you started, so don’t get me started on where you belong, don’t expect me to say I am wrong about God and about his salvation, I am his creation and OK so I went astray and every day is one of grace since I claimed my place with Jesus and his team, you see Satan I am loved, saved, redeemed, God doesn’t care what I did or what I was because that was forgiven at the cross, your loss, God’s gain, he is training me, building me and when he’s through with me it’s me you’ll need to fear, the word of God my sword, I intend to serve my Lord with intensity and passion, bringing the truth to the masses, happen you will tremble as you try to come near so I no longer fear your taunting and your goading, overloading my mind with lies, you strategize to wear me down but God’s given me a crown, I am his daughter do you really think he’s gonna let you get the better of me, do you not understand that I am a child of the most high King, the sting in your tail no longer a threat, Jesus paid my debt at Calvary and I am free, I will not be put down, bossed around by a defeated enemy, take your leave, God has done more for me than you can ever imagine, answered prayers surrounded me with love and that’s enough.. but he wants to do more, God adores me, you see that’s the truth of it and you can never destroy God’s love for me, so tell me I’m lonely and I’ll show you an army ready to stand by me, accompany me on my journey, tell me I’m weak and I’ll show you an army ready to back me with spiritual power and prayer, tell me I’m nobody and I’ll tell you I’m not just somebody, my Daddy is God, tell me I’m going nowhere and I’ll share this truth, God knows the plans he has for me, to prosper me and not to harm me, Oh yes I’m going somewhere, I’m going places, so keep your eyes peeled and watch this space

I have a passion for this man named Jesus

I was watching a clip of a young man giving his testimony, he was so passionate about Jesus and said clearly and with such force “I have a passion for this man named Jesus”,  and when you heard where Jesus had brought him from you could so understand the love and the passion for our great and redeeming Saviour, it was a really moving clip.

I too have an amazing passion for Jesus and for what he has done for me and as I mentioned in my Blog earlier in the week was upset by others posting stuff on facebook that was anti Christian, much of which took the Bible totally out of context.  Why do people do that, they cling on to a verse or word that is taken totally out of context to hammer home their point that Christians are wrong?  My prayer really is that those people will take the time to read the Bible in context, to listen to full teaching on the word but I suppose in many cases that won’t happen unless we are the catalyst in their lives.  If people can see the change in us, the way we live then that could be the reason for them to delve deeper into our faith, that may be the game changer that helps them to see who Jesus is and what he can do for them.  Let’s face it all we really want is for others to follow Jesus, to get it, to fully comprehend the power of his love and so surely we need to ensure we are living our lives fully committed to God, passionate about Jesus and passionate about our faith.

#followjesus

I have a passion for this man named Jesus, and nothing or no one can separate us, there are not words enough to express my love for him and his love for me, can you not see that this is the man who can set you free, you don’t know him yet, but you can, you don’t yet understand and you’re blaming him for all the bad stuff in your life, questioning his word out of context, making it a nonsense because you are not honest in pursuing the answers, yet God pursues you even when you run from him, mock him, make fun of his disciples, and sure it costs nothing to join the crowd yet everything to stand apart, do you have the heart for being different, in this world of hate you have a choice, choose life, choose love, choose to invest time in finding out about this “God of Love”, stop wishing your life away, you can wish upon a star and I can pray to the God who flung them into space, you can turn from his face, I receive his overwhelming mercy and grace, you can hide but not forever for he is relentless in his pursuit of you, he loves the very bones of you, desires to get to know you, giving you a purpose, no longer worthless but worthwhile, significant in his magnificent Kingdom, accepting of his freedom, I have a passion for this man named Jesus, take some time to see this from my perspective, get creative with your thoughts, if you do the same thing you’ve always done you get the same results you always get, Jesus is ready to forgive and forget, to let you have a life of abundant joy and vibrancy, to live a life free from anxiety, free from worry, free from the very things that hold you in slavery, it’s all written in his book, take a look some time without your eyes of bigotry, open your heart to see what it really says, talk to God like a simple prayer, ask him to help you make sense of his word, take time to ask God what he can do for you, following Jesus is the best thing you will ever do.

This is my word

Gave my testimony to 120 women today, was not as nervous as I thought and was truly blessed by the response I got, God is certainly using my story and to him be the total glory for saving me from my sin.  Part of my testimony revolves around my belief that God called me out of the gay lifestyle and that I believe this is both biblical and God’s will for my Iife. I was chatting to some ladies about this and how I truly believed in the Old Testament and New Testament references to homosexuality/sexual immorality and when I got back to my seat I just felt God giving me this reference.

Proverbs 7: 2-3 – Guard my teachings as the apple of your eye.  Bind them on your fingers; write them on the tablet of your heart.

To me it was like a massive endorsement of my testimony, that I was listening to his word and obeying him, praise God.

THE WORD

This is my word and my word is the truth, guard it closely, hold it close to your heart, demonstrate your faith by believing the truth that comes from my teachings, treat each word with care and love, don’t be deceived by the enemy, false teachers and preachers, don’t try and twist it to suit your desires, allow my fire to burn in your soul so that you may be whole, allow the Holy Spirit to lead you, I love you, you are the apple of my eye and I want you to desire to draw close to me, to take everything I have to give, to live a full and fruitful life, to make sacrifices as required, desire to know me more, to receive all I have in store for you, hold my word close to your heart and you and I will never be apart.

I was created to shine, to radiate his glory

Today as I was driving to work I was praying for opportunities to witness for him today at work.  I recognise that I am in a privileged position, I run a food shop and get to interact with a lot of different people every day.  But I also recognise that my behaviour or my “mood” can impact massively on the experience they have in the  shop, so if I am in a quiet mood, I may not open up and converse with them, what a wasted opportunity for God.  I also recognise that I cannot witness in my own strength and I don’t always have the right words, so I love this verse I came across and I love the thought that as I stand serving behind the counter, God is standing next to me, giving me the strength and words that I need to shine for him.

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

Acts 2:28 – You have made known to me the paths of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence.

JESUS IS COMING SOON

Breaking news, Jesus is coming soon, Jesus my redeemer is coming back, he’s got my back you see Jesus died to set me free and through receiving his gift, through lifting my heart to him and inviting him into my life I’ve capitalised on his sacrifice and I am redeemed, it seems that even though he could see into the depth of my soul he loved me anyway, the good, the bad, the ugly, that’s why he died for me so I could break free, he whispered into my heart and kissed my soul making me whole, filling me with joy and yes I was lost, but now I am lost in God, so lost that I am found, the depths I experienced are what makes the heights so beautiful, God an integral part of my every circumstance, there through every storm providing calm, God within me shows me what he sees in me I was created to shine to radiate his glory, in his presence is fullness of Joy, with God within me I will not fail, I have nothing except that which God gives me, I am nothing without his peace, his love, his forgiveness, I am solely what God makes me, he shows me his ways, Lord all I can say is I want what you want Lord, I’m here to serve, I give my life as my sacrifice, stand by my side and give me strength to proclaim your name, so that through me all may see the love that claimed my heart and set me free and all may be open to receive….