“And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on
God is looking for the good in His redeemed children, not for faults, not for things to condemn.
Christ came not to condemn, but to save us. (*See John 3:17)
What is true about God?
What is true about God’s redeemed children?
“When anyone belongs to Christ, they become a new person. Their old way of life has gone. Their new life has begun! 2 Corinthians 5:17
Christ never did any wrong thing, but God punished Him as if He had. He died as punishment for our sins. As a result, we become right with God when we belong to Christ. We become right, because He is right.” 2Corinthians 5:21 Easy English Bible
“Nobody can say that God’s people are guilty. God himself has accepted us as right with him. So nobody can say that God should still punish us. Nobody can say that, because Christ Jesus himself died on our behalf.
And God raised Christ up so that He became alive again after His death. Now Christ is sitting at God’s right side in heaven. He himself is praying to God on our behalf.
Christ will always continue to love us.Nothing can stop that! We may have troubles.
Things may make us sad or afraid.People may do bad things to us.
We may have no food or no clothes. There may be great danger.
People may even try to kill us.
But none of these things can stop Christ from loving us.
As it says in the Bible: ‘Because we are your people, God, people try to kill us all the time. They think that we are like sheep, and we are ready to be killed.’
Because God loves us, none of these troubles can ever beat us.
He makes us win against them. I am sure of this.
Nothing can stop God from loving us.
Death cannot do that. Life cannot do that.
Angels cannot do that, nor can demons do that.
Nothing that happens to us now, or that will happen in a future time can do that.
No powerful spirits can do that.
Nothing that is high above the world can do that,
nor anything that is deep down below the ground.
Nothing else in the whole universe can stop God from loving us.
Because of our Lord Christ Jesus, we know how much God loves us.”
Romans 8:33-39 Easy English Bible
Teach us to learn about and then to focus on whatsoever things are true about You, and ourselves, those things in us that are positive, and virtuous, pure and lovely, worthy of praise and of good report; help us not to look for faults or things to condemn ourselves for and feel guilty over; for You forgive our sins and give us the righteousness of Thy Son Jesus Christ, You love us very much, and look for the good in us. Thank You for being so kind to us to save us from our sins through Thy Son Jesus Christ, in Jesus name, amen.
“My Christian friends, God has been very kind to us. Because of that, I really want you to serve God with your whole life. Offer your bodies to Him like a sacrifice that continues to live. Serve Him with everything that you have and that will please Him. That is the true way to worship God.” ~ Romans 12:1 Easy English Bible
Heavenly Father, we ask that You bless and encourage all who give their lives to take care of others in need. Thank You for their love and compassion. Give these precious souls Thy strength and grace to do all that their jobs require; fill them with rivers of Thy peace, hope and love. May they ever walk in Thy light with You, oh Lord, thank You, in Jesus’ name, amen.
“Lord Help Me Endure To The End” is a prayer song inspired by a scripture verse that Jesus spoke to His disciples when He was talking to them about prophetic events of the dark last days.
Jesus said, “But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.”
Matthew 24:13 KJV
What does the word Jesus used for endure mean?
ὑπομένω hupomenō~~Thayer Definition:
1) to remain, 1a) to tarry behind, 2) to remain, i.e. abide, not recede or flee,
2a) to persevere under misfortunes and trials to hold fast to one’s faith in Christ
2b) to endure, bear bravely and calmly: ill treatments
This verse with its word meaning has spoken volumes to me as I have studied and meditated over them.
I’m so thankful the Lord gave me this prayer song to encourage me to meditate on this verse as I seek Him in prayer and in His Word, especially now.
No stranger to affliction being a sufferer of chronic daily migraines and fibromyalgia, I was painting to distract myself from pain early one morning last month.
Mark reminded me of an appointment I had to get ready for so I got in a rush to print my painting and get ready for the day.
Alas, as I rounded the corner of my bed I tripped and fell backwards landing on my left side and crashed onto the hardwood floor.
Horrified, I saw my left arm detached from my body. In excruciating pain, I thought my hip and neck were broken, as they were hurting as much as my arm and shoulder, also I could not move. Talk about screaming. My beloved Mark was by my side in a second.
I had to be taken to the hospital where they did imaging. Not only did I have bruises all over the left part of my body, but the X-Rays and scans revealed that I’d severely fractured my left humerus. Thank the Lord I had broken nothing else. I returned home with my left arm in a heavy splint and sling. It was so heavy in fact, I could barely walk. The pain was unbearable. I learned how disabled one is made by such a severe injury.
At first I just felt manacled by that awful splint and was sent into panic mode in certain positions. I was in more pain than I’d ever been in my life and I begged God to take me to Heaven. He kept saying nope. Not only did I find the pain beyond my endurance, I couldn’t tolerate being so helpless and dependent on others for assistance in EVERYTHING.
The Lord said, “ENDURE.”
Hadn’t I suffered enough, I asked.
The Lord was not going to let me off the hook.
He reminded me of the prayer song He had given me, “Lord Help Me Endure To The End.”
He reminded me of the other prayer song with lyrics He had given me on my most recent release Paths of Faith, “I Will Lay Down My Life.”
Migraines flared up the agony in my fractured arm even more. The wretched splint caused huge tormenting tension knots in my back and neck. I could not get comfortable nor sleep in my bed but had to sleep in Mark’s recliner.
Despite my misery, the Lord showered me with rivers of His measureless mercy. He sent wonderful home healthcare people to assist me. They always ended up telling me about folks who were far worse off than I was and this would somehow comfort me because I not only then felt I was not alone in my pain, it motivated me to pray for people who suffered as I did.
Prayer was the only way I could lay my life down in love for others because of my disability, while others were laying their lives down in love for me. The Lord always sent me people with the most cheerful attitudes. They somehow could make me laugh despite my intense pain.
Our son flew home from LA to help my husband with my care.
Our daughter being tied up with myriad issues in Tucson did many wonderful things for us that we needed assistance with by ordering things we required and had them sent to us.
We were surrounded by love. God showed His mercy and faithfulness in so many ways that helped me to hang on when I thought I could not endure another moment of pain. Many from our church sent beautiful cards and prayers while our friend Sharon came and stayed with me twice so Mark could run some necessary errands.
Our Pastor came over and anointed me with oil and prayed for my healing. All of these beautiful expressions of God’s love comforted me, reminding me that our Heavenly Father still loved me despite my suffering.
One night after I finally fell asleep exhausted from the pain, I dreamed that the Lord Jesus Christ came down from Heaven and into my living room. He stood by the recliner where I lay sleeping and He checked on my arm as if He were a doctor checking on my progress. I dreamed this two nights in a row. I woke up very comforted both times, assured of His love for me.
But on days when the hours stretched by and my pain level stayed at a ten I became depressed and wept, praying for God’s mercy and repenting for everything I could think of that might have upset the Lord. For when we go through serial trials we can’t help but look up and ask the Lord, “What did I do wrong?”
Whenever I ask the Lord questions like that He refers me to His Word. From the Epistle of James: “My Christian friends, remember to be happy, even when many kinds of trouble happen to you. Troubles can help you. God wants to see if you really trust Him. Your faith in God will become stronger as a result of these troubles. So you should continue to trust God all the time. Then you will become stronger as a Christian. You will become completely how you should be. You will not need anything more.” James 1:2-4 (*Easy English Bible)
The Holy Spirit uses the Word of God to comfort me and assure me that God is using my trials to enlarge my faith.
“We thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, because He is so good to us. As our Father, He is very kind to us. He is our God who comforts us in every way. Whenever we have trouble, He comforts us. Because of that, we ourselves can comfort other people. When they have any kind of trouble, we can comfort them, in the same way that God has comforted us. Christ himself received much pain, and God comforted Him. As Christ’s servants, we also receive the same kind of pain. But, God also comforts us very much, because we belong to Christ.”2 Corinthians 1:3-5 *(Easy English Bible)
Peter the Apostle wrote that we should expect to have suffering and trials as Christians.
“Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: 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.” 1 Peter 4:12-13 KJV
Peter asserted that suffering and pain motivate the Christian to do God’s will instead of their own will, even as Christ did His Father’s will on earth.
“Christ had trouble and pain while He lived in His human body. So you should prepare yourselves to have trouble and pain too. Think about it in the same way that Christ did. If someone has trouble and pain in his body, he stops doing wrong things. As a result, that person will want to do what God wants him to do. In his life in this world, he will not want to do the bad things that people think are good.” 1 Peter 4:1-2 (*Easy English Bible)
“That is why we never give up.
Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!
So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen.
For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.” ~ 2 Corinthians 4:16-18 NLT (*New Living Translation)
Today I feel very sad for all of the families who have lost loved ones in the recent school shootings in Texas.
My prayers go out to all of them and to our nation as well, for such horrible violence affects each of us at the core of our souls, though we may try to desensitize ourselves and pretend it doesn’t affect us because no bullets directly hit our flesh or wounded someone in our family.
But evil and violence affects every soul in our society whether we admit it or not.
And it begins with anger.
Consider Jesus’s words:
“But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.” Matthew 5:22 KJV
Anger breeds hatred.
John the apostle wrote: “But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes.
Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.” 1 John 2:11,3:15 -KJV
Had the eighteen year old murderer in the recent shootings been taught to respect and love his grandmother, to love, glorify, trust, and believe in the God who had created him, and in whose image he and all other humans were formed, he most likely would not have dreamed of committing such an evil crime.
What is hell like?
I imagine it as an abyss where God’s name is blasphemed, reviled and ever taken in vain; a dark maze of interminable suffering, unrelenting pain, hunger, self delusion, fighting, dissatisfaction, greed, anger, hatred, covetousness, envy, vanity, idolatry, narcissism, lust, hypocrisy, addiction, sickness that never ends, cold hearted souls who abuse and condemn and manipulate others, poverty, bigotry, war, egotism, arrogance,shame, riches with no satisfaction, ingratitude, and relationships without love, constant bickering and dissembling and every kind of deceit; souls forever stealing caring nothing for the value of other’s property, hopelessness, despair, frustration because no one is ever happy and they can’t figure out why, and everything and anything that is against God’s will is committed all the time and championed because it is an endless night dominated by malevolent spiritual forces.
Since hell is a territory governed by sin, and God’s Word reveals that the wages of sin is death, then I reckon that it’s a place whirling on a blind path towards its own self destruction.
The Apostle Peter wrote that the earth is just going to erupt into a ball of flames someday.
“But the heavens and the earth, which are now, by the same word are kept in store, reserved unto fire against the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men…But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.
Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?” 2 Peter 3:7,10,12 – KJV
Sin is a corruption of something that will never go the right way and achieve its goal. It is an arrow that constantly misses the mark. And that mark is God’s will.
God’s will is revealed in His Word. When people stop fearing and respecting God; when they stop believing in Him, they stop loving Him.
If I stop fearing the Lord, I will also stop loving and believing in Him. If I lose any one of those three necessary components of love for God, then I lose all three of them.
In other words, I will have no faith, love, nor fear of God.
Faith is more than just believing that God exists.
James 2:19 asserts “Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.” James 2:19 – KJV
While they might be afraid of God, those devils blaspheme, disobey, and dishonor the Lord through people all the time. They neither love, respect, nor glorify Him.
John the Apostle wrote: “He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning. For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil.” 1 John 3:8 – KJV
The soul who desires to live for God and do His will, and who walks in love obeying Christ, no matter what their outward circumstances might be, has heaven in their heart.
Paul wrote in Colossians 1:13 that the soul who trusts Jesus Christ for salvation and who loves and obeys Christ is delivered by the Heavenly Father from the power of darkness, and “translated into the kingdom of His dear Son.”
Faith not only believes in God’s existence, but it means trusting Him to keep His word, to be faithful, to live up to everything He promises to be and more, no matter what they might have to endure.
I can attest to God’s faithfulness on this score as I live with chronic daily migraines. I know what hell is like and heaven too. Jesus Christ is a RISEN, LIVING Lord and Savior. He does not forsake us in our suffering.
Faith is not ashamed of the Lord Jesus Christ.
It is not embarrassed to be called a Christian. It does not substitute a cause for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and then delude itself into thinking that God is pleased, because causes do not save souls. Christ’s blood is the only thing that ever saved a soul.
Causes come and go.
If we want to glorify our risen Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who suffered and died on the cross to save us from the power of sin and hell, triumphing over our souls and our own ultimate self destruction, then we have to believe He exists and that He is watching everything we do, and hears every word we say and write, that He cherishes us more than we can ever comprehend and that He really and truly will speak to us if we will listen.
He will guide us and teach us His will and enable us to do it.
He absolutely will forgive all our sins because His blood paid the price for every wrong thing we ever did against Him. If we are sorry for it and turn away from it He forgives us.
We might be ashamed of it but He won’t ever hold it against us. He washes our sins away as far as the east is from the west. The only one who ever brings our sins back up in our face is the devil and his allies.
The Bible refers to the devil as “the accuser of the brethren…” (see Revelations 12:10)
When we accuse, slander, libel, scorn, condemn, etc, we are throwing the ball in the wrong court.
Rather than “sit in the seat of the scornful…” (See Psalm 1:1-2) Christians are to look for the true, good, just, excellent, pure, noble, and praiseworthy things in ourselves and others (see Philippians 4:8)
Christ tells us to abide in Him in our prayer closets and allow His Holy Spirit to guide us as He promises in His Word.
“But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in My name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.” John 14:26 – KJV
May we not allow anger to guide us. Anger does not accomplish Christ’s will. “For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.” James 1:20 – KJV
“Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil.” Psalm 37:8 – KJV
Evil is defined as everything that opposes God’s will no matter how righteous it may appear on the surface.
May we ever give our anger to our Lord Jesus Christ. For He is the righteous Judge.
May we be guided by His love. For to love is Christ’s command —His will. May we ever remember that Love is how we are defined as Christ’s disciples.
Heavenly Father, we mourn and pray for the families who lost loved ones in the Texas school shooting and ask that You comfort every precious family, every heart that has been shattered by this evil.
We pray You will hold them in Thy everlasting arms and fill them with rivers of Thy infinite love, mercy, and grace.
Comfort every fearful heart.
Lord, may we not grow insensitive and cold toward our fellow human as so much evil and iniquity abound in our world.
Help us to conquer evil by doing Thy good will on this hell bound earth that the reality of Thy heaven might live and be displayed in our hearts so all can see Thy light in us and You be glorified in our lives when we do Thy will to love and serve each other.
Help us always to say with Jesus who prayed while being tortured on the cross for our sins, “Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing,”
In Jesus’s name, amen.
Suzanne ❤️ …created through the Indwelling Risen Lord Jesus Christ, Inspired by the Holy Spirit, to the Glory of God the Father, in Jesus’ Name, amen. (*See John 14:20, 21, 23)
Jesus Christ said, “You have heard that the ancients were told, ‘You shall not murder,’ and ‘Whoever commits murder shall be answerable to the court.’
22 But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be answerable to the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘You good-for-nothing,’ shall be answerable to the supreme court; and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell.
23 Therefore, if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and there you remember that your brother has something against you,
24 leave your offering there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering.” ~ Matthew 5:21-24 -NASB
“…do not let the sun go down on your anger, and do not give the devil an opportunity.
All bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and slander must be removed from you, along with all malice.
Be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.” Ephesians 4:26-27,31-32 – NASB
“If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.” 1 John 4:20-21 -KJV
Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God. James 1:19-20 – KJV