Wednesday, March 21, 2012

When You Are Being Tested

So many of my friends and family members are going through such hard trials with multiple problems, that I thought I’d post this message that I just prepared.  I pray that it will inspire you to be an overcomer.

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When You Are Being Tested

1. Remember that most problems are:

a. A direct result of sin.

1 Chronicles 21:1, 7, 8 And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel. 7 And God was displeased with this thing; therefore he smote Israel. 8 And David said unto God, I have sinned greatly, because I have done this thing: but now, I beseech thee, do away the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly.

b. A result of direct disobedience.

Judges 2:20 And the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel; and he said, Because that this people hath transgressed my covenant which I commanded their fathers, and have not hearkened unto my voice

c. A result of being out of the will of God.

d. A result of simply living in this evil world.

e. A result of an action on your part or someone else’s part.

James 1:14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

f. A result of God allowing you to be tested.

2. When you are going through problems or being tested keep things in the proper perspective.

a. Focus on one day at a time.

b. Don’t become overwhelmed by the future.

c. Don’t think about “what ifs”.

Matthew 6:34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

3. Don’t let your emotions or your senses rule you.

a. Be led by the Holy Spirit.

Romans 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.

Galatians 5:25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

b. Especially be aware that Satan uses your emotions.

4. Don’t blame God or others for the situation you are in.

a. Take responsibility for your actions.

Psalm 51:2-4 Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. 3 For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. 4 Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest.

b. You can blame Satan because he is the enemy but remember that “you are sometimes your own worst enemy”.

5. Stay in the faith.

a. Remember that faith comes by hearing.

Romans 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

b. Read your Bible out loud and listen to praise music

c. Build up your faith.

1. Read the Word out loud

2. Believe the Word

3. Memorize the Word

4. Stand on the Word

5. Read stories of great faith

6. Pray in the Holy Spirit

Jude 1:20 But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost

6. View every situation as an opportunity for God to perform the miraculous.

a. Remember the miracles He has done for you in the past.

b. If you don’t expect God to help you, He probably won’t.

Psalm 9:18 For the needy shall not alway be forgotten: the expectation of the poor shall not perish for ever.

Psalm 62:5 My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him.

Proverbs 23:18 For surely there is an end; and thine expectation shall not be cut off.

We also have a final expectation:

Philippians 1:20 According to my earnest expectation and my hope, that in nothing I shall be ashamed, but that with all boldness, as always, so now also Christ shall be magnified in my body, whether it be by life, or by death.

7. Hold on to what God has promised you in His Word.

a. Know what the Word promised the children of God.

b. Proclaim His promises out loud to others.

Colossians 4:4 That I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak.

2 Corinthians 4:13 We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I believed, and therefore have I spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak;

Acts 5:20 Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life.

8. Don’t allow yourself to become alienated from others when you are hurt.

a. Remember if people disappoint you, it is usually because they did not do as you wanted them to do.

Luke 6:37 Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven:

b. Guard your tongue because you will hurt others as well as your permanent relationship with them.

Proverbs 21:23 Whoso keepeth his mouth and his tongue keepeth his soul from troubles.

James 3:8 But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.

1 Peter 3:10 For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile:

c. Be the “bigger person”. Take on the responsibility of being the more mature Christian.

Hebrews 13:20-21 Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, 21 Make you perfect (mature) in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

9. Keep a vision before you no matter what.

a. See yourself triumphant in the situation.

Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

b. Learn to see the situation as God sees it.

10. Trust God to see you through.

a. All of our worry boils down to the fact that we do not trust God to work everything out for our best. Worry is a sin.

b. Remember that your Father wants the best for you.

Philippians 1:6 Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:

c. Trust in the Lord and lean not on your own understanding.

2 Corinthians 1:9-10 But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead: 10 Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us;

Nahum 1:7 The LORD is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust in him.

One final word. You will face problems in this world. God never promises us a life without problems, but He does promise that He will be with us when we face the fiery trials.

1 Peter 4:12-13 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: 13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.

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Friday, March 16, 2012

Museum Pictures

On our way through Lima on our last trip we had time to visit the Museo Nacional de Arqueologia, Antropologia e Historia del Peru.  I thought maybe you would enjoy some of the photographs I took while there.