FOCUS on The Lord

I love God so much. Every day I want to get closer to Him. I know there is so much that I’m missing out on, more that He wants to show me, and more of who He is.

Something that I want to get better at is prayer. When I talk to God, I want to be more concentrated on things that I’m saying, especially at night. When I’m laying in bed, I tend to get distracted.

I realize something that I notice myself doing a lot. I’m talked to God and then all of a sudden I start thinking about something else random, in the middle of my prayer!!! I’m not focus on Him. I’m just trying to make some small talk before I head to bed; getting in that over-repeated prayer that I say every other night. And, I’m thinking in my head like “How many things I have to do tomorrow” or “What am I going to wear on Thursday”. I’m not even focus on God, instead I’m concentrated on other unimportant things. And, I ask myself why I don’t feel His presence anymore.

God is asking for your full attention. He has so much that He wants you to learn. His word is literally Him talking to you. The more you listen, the more you will understand what He is saying. When you are focus, you will hear God’s voice better. You will read His word and get a better idea of what He is say. You will worship and feel His presence all around you.

Read God’s Word Daily, Pray without ceasing, Think of God constantly, Make time for Him; He has so much to tell you!!!!

He says, “Be still, and know that I am God

Psalms 46:10

Teach me, and I will be silent; make me understand how I have gone astray.

Job 6: 24

If my people who are called by my name humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from the heaven and will forgive their son and heal the land.

2 Chronicles 7:14

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Give it all to God- The Samaritan Woman

John 4- The full story of the Samaritan Woman at the well

Most Christians know the story of the woman at the well, but if you don’t, I will give you some background information about the event.

This woman was from the city of Samaria. Jews and Samaritans did not get along; to the Jews, Samaritans were considered unclean. This woman at the well had 5 husbands, and she was shunned from her people. Jesus met this woman at a very important well, Jacob’s Well. This event took place before Jesus made himself publicly known as the Christ.

This is a story that I’ve heard a countless number of times. However, as I was reading the word, I asked God to open my eyes, and something caught my eye.

Around noon time, Jesus was sitting at the well when a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, “Will you give me a drink?”

The Samaritan woman said to him, “You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?”

 Jesus answered her, “If you knew who asked you for a drink, you would have asked me and I would have given you living water.”

 I imagine the woman laughing and saying “you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well?”

 Jesus smiled and replied, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again,  but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. The water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water… I know that the Messiah is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.”

Then Jesus declared, “I am he.”

 Then, the woman believed and left her water jar. She went back to the town and said to the people,  “Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Messiah?

In the beginning, the woman probably thought that Jesus was a creepy Jew sitting at the well. But as he continues to talk, he tells her about his living water. With this water, it would satisfy her thirsts. This is different from Jacob’s well water. This woman had to come in the heat, every day, to fill her jars up. The water was never enough.

The jars represent our hearts. Just like this Samaritan woman, many of us are filling ourselves with the things of this world: money, relationship, success. And then we find ourselves feeling empty and lonely because nothing seems to completely take away our pain. But, we continue to come back to these things because we don’t know what Jesus has for us.

Let me tell you right now, if this is you and you feel this way, there is Hope. When you finally receive Jesus’s gift of living water, you never have to feel that emptiness. His spirit is more than enough for you.

When the Samaritan finally understands what Jesus had for her, there is something very significant that she does. She leaves her jars and runs to tell the people that the Messiah is here.

This woman was a disgrace to her people, but this didn’t matter to her anymore. She went out to tell the people about Jesus. She did not care what they thought. She left her jars and ran. This is what we should do too. When we truly receive Jesus into our hearts, we leave our sinful hearts and give it all to God. When we do this, we are filled with joy and Jesus’s living water. We don’t care what others think. We tell the world about God’s grace and Love. There is no more need to go back to fill ourselves because we are filled with God’s spirit. We will feel renewed. This is where we find the truth.

TRUE LOVE, TRUE JOY, TRUE PEACE….

…Hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.

Romans 5:5

…But just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please man, but to please God who tests our hearts.

1 Thessalonians 2:4

For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame”

Romans 10:11

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

John 14:6

We Are a Right Now People: Patience & Kindness

This segment of The Fruit of the Spirit Series took me a little while to write because I wasn’t sure what to say. I decided to mix the two fruit patience and kindness. I started thinking about some of the things I’ve heard about patience over the years from pastors and teachers. I remember them talking about our society and how things now have to be instant. We want it right now and if we don’t get it at the time we expected then it’s temper tantrum time.

A big problem this world has is that we lack patience. We like having things quick and easy. The faster the better. That’s why there are things like food on the go and instant coffee. It’s okay, it’s all good. We need these things when we are running late and we don’t have enough time. There is nothing wrong with instant and on the go things. The problem is when something takes a little longer than usual and we start getting an attitude with people. Now, if you ask someone to do something and they are slacking off then that’s different story. However, if there is a genuine problem, and the job can’t get done as fast as normal, don’t start disrespecting the others when they are working so hard to fix the issue. Be Patient. Be Kind.

Be patient when it can’t be done as quickly as it used to be. And be kind instead of being rude. That is how we can show the love of God. He wants us to be kind and patient when it’s hard. We are able to show God in us by being this way. This opens the door for us to minister and share the gospel. Just by being patient and kind we are able to spread the love of God.

So the next time you are in a restaurant and there is a problem with the milkshake machine, instead of getting mad at the waiter/ waitress for not being able to bring out you favorite double chocolate shake on time, how about you smile and wait for the issue to be resolved. You could even order a different thing. By you showing that you are capable of being patient and kind, you are showing that God is the one that is in control of your life, not your fleshly desires.

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant.

1 Corinthians 13:4

I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love.

Ephesians 4:2

Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.

Colossians 3:12-13

Shalom, Peace Be With You: Peace

Peace! Peace! Peace!

Peace is a word we hear all the time. We even have signs for it. But what does it really mean? When you look up the meaning of peace , it says that it is the freedom from disturbance. A sense of calm. You aren’t worried about the future or what people might think. You are at peace. When I think of peace, I think of the times when I am in the car on a long road trip. I just put on my headphones, listen to slow worship music and close my eyes. I just thinking about my Creator and reflect on how great He has been to me. I just worship Him. I pray and thank Him for everything.

There is a story in the Bible that I love and it’s in the book of Mark. After Jesus spoke to the crowd, he told his disciples to row to the other side. A huge storm came and Jesus was at the bottom of the boat sleeping. The disciples were scared and came to Jesus.

They said “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?”

He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Immediately, the wind died down and it was completely calm.

In the middle of the storm, when everyone else was anxious–in the time of worry–Jesus was at peace. He was not afraid. He was calm. Jesus calls us to be like that too.

When everyone else is scared or worried, you be the one that is not afraid. You be the one that has peace because you know that God is in control. He is protecting you. His angels are around you.

In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.

Psalms 4:8

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.

John 14:27

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus

Philippians 4: 6-7

The Difference Between Happiness and Joy: Joy

Let’s start of first by defining these terms. Happiness is that feeling that comes over you when you feel like life is good and you can’t help but smile in the moment. Being happy is having a sense of confidence in or satisfaction with a person, arrangement, or situation. Joy, on the other hand, arises from the assurance that God is in control of all the details of my life, the confidence that ultimately everything is going to be alright even though it isn’t currently, and the determined choice to praise God in every situation. Joy is an attitude you should have always, in the good times and the bad.

Something that I notice in a lot of movies and in real life is that we mix these two up. We  are constantly looking for the thing that makes us happy. Then, when we find our “happiness”, we are not satisfied. We keep filling ourselves up, getting more and more things. This mentality sounds like:

“Oh, if I get this new game, then people will like me, and my life is complete.”

“Man, if that girl/boy just likes me, then I will be happy”

“Well, if I get that job, then I will be good because I have so much money”

etc.

All these things sound so good and amazing, but the problem is that we use them as something that we think will fulfill  our lives. This happiness only lasts a couple days, months, and at best years. In the end, you are never happy and you feel empty. This cycle just continues for your entire life until you die and you die empty, feeling like you were never completed. But guess what, there is hope. There is an answer to the question we all have. “When will my life be complete?”

Jesus

Jesus is the answer. When Jesus enters your life, he fills that void. You truly feel like your life is complete. This feeling isn’t happiness (happiness is temporary), but it is joy. In God, your joy last forever because you know no matter what happens God is still in control and he always will be. Now, you just praise him because He is so good. You feel Joy through everything. When you are sad, mad, glad, scared, you are joyful because no matter what, you know that God is for you and is with you always.

   Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.

Philippians 4:4

This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Psalm 118:24 

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18  

…And do not be grieved, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.

Nehemiah 8:10

How to Heal our Nation: Love

I hate that people are dying for someone else’s bad actions. Someone loved those people and for them to die makes me really upset. There is always going to be evil in this world. No matter how much we want it to be this amazing utopia, it is never going to be that way. But we should protest for what we believe and for justice.

 I just think going out and destroying things and disrespecting others is not the way to go. That is so wrong. No matter what happened, that is wrong. We are not little kids and we shouldn’t be acting like that.

I’ve been seeing videos of people breaking into stores, setting cop cars on fire, and so much more. That is unbelievable. Doing that is not going to get us anywhere. If we want justice and peace, we must do whats right. I am mad at what that cop did, and he should have known better. He was wrong for what he did. I just think that some people in our country are trying to get justice the wrong way and that makes me mad too. What that cop did does not give you an excuse to go out and do whatever you want. I know many of us are fed up with all the racism, but what some people are doing is making the problem way worse. I know not everyone is doing that. However, the fact that it is happening in the first place, is really annoying. I saw a post saying that “Its not about how we are protesting but its about what we are protesting for.” In my opinion, I find that statement wrong. Many of us are protesting for the justice of George Floyd. So to get your justice you are going to go out and be destructive? That’s how you get your justice? I don’t understand how anyone can say yes to that. YOU DO NOT FIGHT FIRE WITH FIRE!!! There are better ways to make your voice heard. Yes, protest, protest for the justice of the men and women that died unjustfully, but protest peacefully please. We are listening to your cry, we feel your pain. Just please, do it right. This is my opinion and I want my voice to be heard too.  I’ve been seeing the posts about how “silence is betrayal” and that hit me pretty hard so I felt as if it was time to say something.

We all should love each other no matter their religion, their skin, their sexuality, or their opinions. We should love them as people. Even though you are different from someone, one thing in common is that you both are human. And God gave you both life. You should love them because God loved you first. If they hate you, you should continue to show love. There are people that hate Jesus. He still loves them even though they hate him. It didn’t matter the skin color or that we didn’t believe in him. He still loves us and he died for us. Because of that, we should love others too. I am going to love people because God loved me first. I will love them, just not their sin. The same goes for myself. I am going to love myself, just not my sin.

Above all, show sincere love to each other, because love brings about the forgiveness of many sins.

1 Peter 4:8

But God shows his love for us, because while we were still sinners Christ died for us.

Romans 5:8

Don’t pay back evil for evil or insult for insult. Instead, give blessing in return. You were called to do this so that you might inherit a blessing.

1 Peter 3:9