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     This title may seem odd for the Christmas season but Jesus is nudging me that the time is right for people to look for change. No matter where they feel they are in their walk with Jesus or how much change they think has occurred in the past. It is what is going on at this moment that carries all importance, if we’re not living the moment, we’re missing Jesus. It’s great to be able to look back at where we were and the journey that God used for us to overtake new territories from Satan’s grip. However, suppose we pause for a moment to journey back in thought to see that which remains hostage to Satan's stronghold giving him control of the hearts and minds of people through root causes from way back when. Satan dresses sin in beautifully decorated wrappings inviting everyone to partake and enjoy the forbidden fruit. Today that could be any number of sinful combinations, including thoughts as well as actions. Each carries its unique attraction as well as its addictive poison! Sin has a specific purpose to devour and destroy those too proud to ask for forgiveness and repent for said sin. Centuries of people have fallen prey to the addiction of repeated sin, choosing to periodically suffer the fatal agony that always accompanies sinful behavior imprisoning the host in misery. Read John 10:10 (NLT), The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.

      Sadly, we are equipped with memory lapse when it comes to the actual depth of pain. The suffering of yesterday given enough time will be lessened in memory. It’s kind of like the gift God gave women toward childbirth. Even though they have had a child and realize what is involved they forgo the ugliness and proceed to endure the pain, sickness, and weeks of discomfort to give the gift of life. A sinner in many ways follows the same pattern only to receive the opposite rewards for our effort. For those who don’t know, we all have trouble dealing with the present. Many people live in the past to escape the now while running from what’s next. Unfortunately, we hide within ourselves sharing space with those things that have beaten us down. We need to do a reverse look-up to take a good look at what is hibernating inside our being and decide if we want to keep it. Ask the question, Psalms 27:1 (NLT), The Lord is my light and my salvation— so why should I be afraid? The Lord is my fortress, protecting me from danger, so why should I tremble? How long do we think we can sleep with the enemy and not birth things unpleasing to God? We need to dig deep within our being and submit every finding to the scrunty of Romans 12:2 (NLT), Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

      I have learned over the years that I can do nothing on my own which is recorded in John 15:5 (NLT), “Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. Knowing this and believing in the birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus. I ask myself “out loud” Why am I not eager to start digging roots to remove them from their influence and restore my joy? Jesus came to show us living for God is possible but we must stay in constant contact with God. Jesus knew who He was in the Father and we’re to know who Jesus says we are to the Father. The name of Jesus gives praise to the Father, just as ours should do. A Life lived as it is written in Matthew 5:16 (NLT), In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father, gives praise to the Father.

      Father, I pray that we all can find your heart in examining our innermost being to remove anything undesirable to You. May we stand confident in believing we are who you say we are and all things are possible to those who love you? Mark 9:23-24 (NLT), “What do you mean, ‘If I can’?” Jesus asked. “Anything is possible if a person believes.” 24 The father instantly cried out, “I do believe, but help me overcome my unbelief!” I ask you Lord to add strength to our constitution of resolve to love and serve you. Father please, expand my heart to suffice the territories you’ve selected for me so that I might better serve the needs of your people. Father, I see oceans of need and lands of suffering, may I present them with Luke 2:14 (NLT), “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.” Merry Christmas to all and Happy Birthday Jesus!  Amen




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