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Posts Tagged ‘struggles’

Faith requires action. Otherwise it’s useless. The Bible tells us, “For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.” James 2:26 (KJV)

As Christians, we claim faith in God but some of us continue to live a life full of worry, stress, anger, fear, or depression. Of course, there are situations that sometimes cause these legitimate emotions to appear. But we should not continuously live in such an emotional state.

Psalm 23:4 reads, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” (KJV)

We must put some work behind our faith, and believe in God’s promise to protect and comfort us during our period of trial and tribulation.

For God is not a liar.

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To Be Continued

We all have a story to tell. Never mind the beginning chapters; how will your story end?

Will it end with you being the same way – broke down, lost and confused – that you were at the beginning of the book? Or will you end on a triumphant note, standing tall, knowing at last who you are, why you were created, and where you’re headed.

The first few chapters of your novel may be painful, filled with all sorts of emotional issues and baggage weighing you down. Page 119 might take us with you on your treacherous journey through quicksand, but page 207 might find us standing along side you on solid, not sinking, ground.

That’s your story.

Someone else’s story might take them a little longer to reach victory. We may have to suffer with them through 300 pages of stumbling across rocky ground. And page 305 might find them still stumbling.

To those I say, put on the whole armour of God. The enemy is not playing with you. You need to get geared up.

Ephesians 6:13-17 tells us, “Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:” (KJV)

Can you see the metaphor? The whole armour of God – that’s the protection of God in the form of His truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and Word (Bible). Clinging to all of these becomes our armour, our protection. It’s no wonder that we are told in Isaiah 54:17, “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper;…”

How will your story end? How do you want it to end? Surrender yourself to Jesus Christ. Trust and obey Him. He will grant you everlasting life – and that’s what I call a happy ending!

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Hello all!

If you would like to listen to my live interview please click on the link below:

http://www.artistfirst2.com/ArtistFirst_Maxine_Thompson_2012-12-03.mp3

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Help!

First there was the flesh eating disease, now we have the flesh eating humans. People eating other people.   First in Miami, then in Maryland.   In at least one case it’s implied that the cannibalism was induced by a drug known as ‘Bath Salt’.    

According to a CNN report, one former bath salt user described being on the drug as the “the darkest, evilest thing imaginable.”

Doesn’t all this make you want to open God’s book (the Bible) and at least read what He has to say about all of this?

Motivational speakers motivate.  Psychotherapists treat mental disorders. But Jesus Christ heals the mind, delivers, and saves your soul.  All in one.  Permanently.  

I’m talking about the kind of healing that delivers you from the demons that keep reminding you about how bad (you fill in the blank) treated you. 

I’m talking about the kind of help that delivers you from the drug and alcohol demons that keep holding you captive to their destructive, killing forces. 

I’m talking about the kind of help that saves you, forever removing the shackles that are keeping you from being free.  

That kind of help, that kind of power can only come from Jesus Christ! 

What’s eating at your flesh?  Not literally, but figuratively.  What’s numbing your soul, killing your compassion, leaving you just a little more hopeless, little by little, day by day, slowly tearing you apart? 

Take it to Jesus.  Surrender to Jesus.  Be set free.

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This poem is for anyone dealing with a troubled spirit – depression, addiction, anger, fear, confusion or some other unnamed source.

You may think you’re going through it alone, but you’re not…your actions affect the reactions of others.

Most importantly, you don’t have to go through it alone. Jesus is waiting to carry your load. He will carry you through.

Ask the Savior to help you. Surrender, trust, and believe.

Wasted

It is not your intention
to disrupt them,
But there is something unspeakable
in the air.

It is their intention
to draw the line,
to mask their love
with a persona
that doesn’t care.

And so they cry,
but only inside.
And you’ll never know
how much they love you.

So

You continue your path,
destructive, full of wrath.
Not knowing
how much reaping
you must sow.

But you do know
you can not slay your demons alone.
You can’t denounce them
without the blood shed by Christ.

Still your utterances are countless
and of useless meaning.
You pray heartless prayers
that will not suffice.

And so you suffer,
rebellious and hurt.
But it is not a solitary pain.

For those who love you,
it is contagious,
and they suffer
again
and again.

Don’t let the day come
when God’s voice becomes silent,
when He is no more knocking on your door.

For if that should happen,
you will have strayed too far,
and a life – your life –
will be wasted
for evermore…

© 2012

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Have you ever been determined to stop some bad habit? Something that you know you shouldn’t be doing, but you’ve continued doing it anyway?

Maybe it’s behaving in a rude and attitudinal manner. Maybe it’s stealing, cheating, lying. Maybe you actively listen to somebody gossiping about someone else while you tell yourself, “I’m not the one gossiping. I’m just listening.” It could be any number of things depending on who you are.

We’ve all been there. We’ve entered into our places of employment wound up so tight that it was difficult to even say a pleasant, ‘Good morning’. At one time or another, we’ve stood in the middle of a circle, on the sidelines, or sat in a chair and passively listened while someone else dragged another person’s reputation through the mire. Then, when the destroyer of reputations was finished. We just shook our heads, and didn’t say a word. But silence does not exempt us. In fact, it’s just the opposite…our silence makes us a party to the crime.

Change is hard. I know. It has to be a learned behavior because our tendency is to snap at someone else when we’re in a bad mood. Our tendency is to pull up a chair in eager anticipation of hearing something about someone else’s character that’s worse than our own. Somehow, it makes us feel superior. We’re glad that it’s not us they’re talking about. But it will be. Next time.

Feeling superior to someone else is a deceitful form of reassurance. Because the reality is that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Romans 3:23

When I acknowledge my sinfulness and/or a specific sin, I go to God in prayer asking for His forgiveness. He hears me because I have an active relationship with Jesus Christ. He forgives me because I have surrendered to Jesus and have made Him the Lord and Savior of my life. The Lord strengthens me, and as he renews me my old behaviors are stripped away and new behaviors take their place. A new me emerges. One that has long since stopped taking part in any form of gossip. One that wishes to treat others with the most basic of human niceties, one that wishes to be kind and strives to be more like Christ each day.

Do you want to be more like Jesus Christ? You may be able to change some old behaviors, but you cannot – of your own strength – attain to a level of living that is pleasing to God without first surrendering your old self to Jesus Christ. You must surrender to Jesus first, and then He will lift you up!

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“My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth.”  That’s what David said in Psalm 121:2

And it’s something we would do well to remember.  Even when it feels like God is not present…He is.  Even when it feels like we’re just out here all alone in the wilderness…we’re not if we believe, obey, and have faith. 

We can’t go by what we feel.  If we do we’ll end up believing those deceptive feelings that our enemy, satan, is working hard to instill in us. 

We must hold steadfast to God or we will not only listen to the enemy’s report of defeat, but we’ll accept it as well…forgetting all about the promises of God. 

 God’s Word tells us that, “…He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.”  (1 John 4:4)  That is to say that if Jesus Christ abides in us, He is more powerful than the devil who is roaming about, wreaking havoc in this world.

Yes, at some point, we will have to encounter difficult situations in this world.  We will have to endure hard times, trials and tribulations, but God is the keeper of our souls.  Who better to trust than Him? 

That’s why, like David, I will continue to proclaim, “My help comes from the Lord.”

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I imagine a hawk is somewhat comfortable believing it is the conqueror as it captures its intended prey.  And creatures of the ground are not pacing the cement, back and forth, worrying about when and where their next meal is coming from.  No, they just do, by God-given instinct, what they are created to do.  Hunt, catch, eat, and repeat.

We were created to do something too.  We are not here by accident.  But for a lot of people it feels that way.  There are many people who don’t know why they’re here, and so it creates a kind of aloofness.  A what-does-it-matter kind of mentality.

We are told in Ecclesiastes 12:13, “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.”

So, this is why we are here – to honor and obey the One who created us.  First and foremost.  Is that all you say?  No.  But this must be the number one priority.  And it is possible to love, honor and obey God and have a fulfilling life despite those who do not think the two can go hand in hand.

We can have and pursue other desires, interest, dreams and goals as long as they do not go against the Word of God, as long as they are not causing us to behave in a way that would be displeasing to Him.

This world can be a dark, disappointing place.  And if you are trying to get through it on your own, without the power of God, without the saving grace of Jesus Christ, then your journey can become even more difficult to travel.

You DO have a purpose.  You were created to serve God.  “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.”  Revelation 4:11

(“…thou hast created all things…” that includes us)

Accept your role – God’s gracious gift.  I know sometimes it doesn’t feel like a gift when you’re struggling.  When it’s an everyday problem just to survive.  When your refrigerator is empty and so are your pockets.  I know.  I’ve been there.

But if God created you for His glory, then He most certainly will not forsake you if you don’t forsake Him.  Be thankful, and start walking in the light you were meant to walk in.

Everything always looks clearer when the Son is shining on them.

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To those of you who think suicide is the answer…THINK AGAIN.

Satan tries to make you believe that that’s the only way out.  He tries to get you to accept that it would be best for everybody involved – especially you – if you just made yourself disappear, just ended it all.

Well, it isn’t best, and DON’T YOU BELIEVE IT!

In fact, what satan DOESN’T whisper in your ear is that suicide will only be the BEGINNING of real and everlasting torment in hell for all eternity.

Think about it.

Do you really want to spend eternity in hell where your torment and suffering WON’T STOP, but will now continue for ever and ever?

I know the pain you’re in.

I know the pain of feeling like no one loves you, and I know about the emptiness that feels like it’s slowly killing you, and (under the influence of satan) you think about just giving up because you just can’t take it anymore…

But let me tell you – there IS a way out!

God, through Jesus Christ, has made a way for you to surrender your heavy load, ALL your heavy burdens to Him…and LIVE!

Jesus said, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”  (Matthew 11:28-30)

What that means is this:  If you will believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and that He died on the cross for your sins, then rose again on the 3rd day, “He [will be] a Rewarder of them that diligently seek him.”  That means He will “…give you rest…”

If you will accept Him as your Lord and Saviour, admit you are a sinner and ask Him to forgive you for your sins, He will do it.

Ask Him to come into your heart and take over.  Obey Him. And you will find “rest unto your souls…”

This is God’s promise to you, “In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began.”  (Titus 1:2)

God CAN NOT LIE! But satan can…and does.

Whatever you are struggling with.   Let God help you.  It’s time to let go.

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