#SECRETPLACE

These past few weeks, there has been something about a verse I read that has kept me wondering..Has this ever happened to you? When I read the Bible I am expecting to be impacted. I am expecting to be confronted with the truth-not just any truth but Gods truth. This verse captured my mind I will have to say that the version I read captivated me. I believe that some meanings get lost in translation. It all depends on the version you read. I found this verse while  working in the chapel of the hospital. This verse has stuck with me since then. Has there ever been a verse from the Bible that stuck with you ? Seems like everything stops and there is nothing more important to you than to understand what you just read. I write this verse down on each new notepad I use at work. I also write it in Spanish. I thought I would share with you in hopes that it also speaks to you.

Psalms 91:1-2 KJV ” He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. ” I will say of the Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust”.

There you have it “secret place“. What does that mean? What is the Psalmist talking about? How are we supposed to dwell in the secret place? If it is secret? These were my initial thoughts. I pondered the meaning of this verse. I prayed God would give me knowledge to understand His word. I believed and still do that this verse was directed straight at me.

I looked at other versions to help me clarify what I was reading? I feel that the best way to read and understand scripture is by just reading it. If you don’t devote time to it, you will not get to know it-you won’t get to know HIM.

Typically, when we have a secret it is not shared with everyone. It is only shared with a select few. We only share it with people who are going to guard the intimacy of the secret. We only share a secret with people whom we have relationship with! So why does it say “secret place” in this verse? The love of God for us is not a secret. It is meant to be shared with everyone! In fact, the sacrifice on the cross was visible to all. The resurrection of Jesus Christ was not meant to be a secret.

Is the Psalmist boasting? I would like to think so! If you read the whole Psalm, you can see a boastful, pride filled, confident -David #KnowYourGod style of writing. This is David being a witness too all that stands against him and his belief in God. Pure confidence! Can you take that stance too? You should! It is not a SECRET, meant to be kept hidden from people. He is there for you to know HIM. It is what He wants! You just have to seek HIM. Jeremiah 29:13 NIV “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart”. The “SECRET PLACE” of the most High, wow! In that place you are untouchable. I don’t know about you but, I seek to be under the shadow of the Almighty. How do I get to the secret place, so that I might be kept safe from all that seeks to destroy me? The Psalmist knew what he was talking about. In order to know the secret place you must have relationship with Him. Do you know God or do you just know of God? When you know God, you trust His word, you trust His promises, you step into your future knowing you have nothing to worry about! Can you really say like David, Psalms 46:2 NIV “Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea”

You need to decide, not to allow your faith to be shaken.  You will be kept under His wing! I know what it feels like, to be in the midst of a storm in your life. Like a tornado that suddenly touches down.  Once your caught in it you just have to find shelter. For the believer, that shelter is Jesus Christ and “we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” Romans 8:28 NIV We have to remind ourselves that we that have relationship with God, we have an advantage. We have access to the “secret place” through Christ. David knew His God, Do you know your God? It will get harder to breath once in the center of your tornado. The winds will bring what seems like uncertainty and you will see walls all around you. I even saw pieces of my life swirl away! But I refuse to loose my focus! I refused to sink! The winds of hate, bitterness, loneliness, disappointment, failure, abandonment, worthlessness and emptiness will surround you. But seek shelter in the secret place of God. Rest in the truth of His promises! Smile, because you have access to the secret place and you are safe, loved, you are wanted you have purpose!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I pray you can say ..

 God Almighty yours is the power and Glory forever more. Though I shall die and this whole earth should be no more You God will continue to be in exhistence. For nobody created you! You created the heavens and the earth. You created human beings and all sorts of living things! Yours is this world and everything in it! For Heaven is your throne and earth your footstool. You alone decide the fate of men and you alone can rebuild men. You are the Alpha , Omega, beginning & The End- you are Jehova Nisi-my banner of victory in the midst of the most treacherous storm. You are Jehova -Jireh you see it all nothing is hiden from your eyes! Lord for I am nothing compared to all your wonders and your wisdom. I acknowledge you are and will be no matter what I do or say. For you do not depend on me. I depend on you! You are my rock, my stable foundation, my only constant. Lord you hung the stars in the sky, the moon, the sun, you’ve created this universe and what we call our galaxy. From the smallest thing to the largest thing is all being held together by the power of your word! Where shall I go to hide from your presence? My heart is an open book, you know it well. Although I’ve question my purpose, you Lord remind me that you have a purpose designed especially for me. Lord though I feel emptied out of tears and exhausted from battle God you remind me that you’ve given me victory over everything that presents itself against the true knowledge of You. Anything against me will not prosper. Because i am yours, and you are mine. I belong to the greatest artist of all time, the greatest musician of all time! You painted the clouds on the sky with your skillful hand. Lord you made mountains stand tall and filled them with such wonders. God you give knowledge to the ones thirsting for it. You tame the wildest of hearts. You alone are almighty. Thank you for sending Jesus to take my place! For giving him up to save me! I am free from hate, fear, worry, anxiety, all sin, and everything that can shake me away from the cross. Jesus help me embrace this newly found freedom and live free Iike you meant for me. Teach me to love others and forgive them. Give me compassion for those that are lost. Awaken in me a desire to pray and intercede for the lost. Lord give me ideas and wisdom on how to best reach people for you! Lord take from me all that interferes with our connection. You know what’s best for me I trust your judgement! Jesus, I love you! I’ve fallen in love with you since I first heard of you! Your love hooked me. I’m forever yours!! I know Lord that you’ve also given me The Holy Spirit and that he will lead me to truth. Speak truths into my heart, your convictions are necessary for our relationship to grow further. Lord help me see into the further and stop me from focusing on the past or what’s going on around me now. Keep me centered, keep my faith strong. Keep me covered with your love!! Keep me from sabotaging my own calling. Stop my hand when I’m moving in haste. Do not let me react to the enemies tricks in a way that will bring dishonor to your name. In Jesus name!!! 

Even When It Hurts! 

Struggling with daily reminders of failure can make you sick to your stomach. It can literally extinguish your joy! How many of us have reached a point in our lives in which we are so depleated that we feel like is finally over? When you feel, you gave it your all? When, you daily don’t even know how tomorrow you will get through it? If you are like me , (human) than you’ve been there. Your either there now or are walking in the thick of it! 

God promises to be with us, Psalms 89:34 TLB ” No, I will not break my covenant; I will not take back one word of what I said”  

You can bank on Gods word! Go ahead put all your eggs in His basket! He promises to be with us- Deuteronomy 31:6 “He will never leave you nor forsake you” 

I have been there. In fact I’m there right now. Even when it hurts and it seems hopeless I’ve settled it in my heart to walk by Faith and serve the almighty God.  My Faith will not be shaken. I know I can trust God with my future. This storm shall pass! It’s not the end. I know it seems like there is no way out. But our God is a way maker!! He made a way for the Israelites to pass through the Red Sea and He will make away for you in this season! 

You cannot let the enemy steal your Joy. Did you know that your Joy comes from God and is independent of what you are going through. Let me explain, no matter what this world throws at you- you are Still Saved by the blood of the Lamb! Nothing can take away your heavenly home! That’s a joyous thought! Nehemiah 8:10 ” The Joy of THE LORD is your strength “. The Lord is eternal! Your Joy is eternal!! 

Listen, when you decide to Love God with all your heart and even when it hurts hold His hand- nonbelievers and believers will be at awe with your Faith Walk! Your testimony will witness to others and strengthen their faith. Decide today, to be an inspiration to others- Even when it hurts, when all seems dark, when it feels like you’ve failed it’s not over until God says it’s over! He holds the world in His hand and your storm, your season did not catch Him by surprise! He has already given us Victory!! 

Today I want to inspire you to continue your walk with the Lord. To trust Him more today, lean into His word and promises for you! Claim them! 

Pray like this: 

Jesus, I don’t know the outcome of my current storm. But You do. You’ve been in my future and I trust you as the author. I trust that you’ve edited my future to fit your Wil for me and to fulfill your purpose for me. Today, I need you like I did yesterday and will forever need you. Lord, I need your peace. I want to rest in you. Help me rest in you. Help me to fully trust you! Show me how it feels to trust you with it all. Give me a desire to want to always experience that! In Jesus name! Amen! 

Questions we can ask, God during our most difficult times-Go ahead, He cares. 

How many of us feel at times that we can’t or shouldn’t ask God questions while we are going through our crisis? How many of us feel or have been led to believe that asking God questions is a sinful, rebellious way of speaking to Him? How many of us feel guilty after pouring our hearts to God? 

 I use to feel that way. I use to think that telling God how I felt wasn’t an acceptable thing to do. All that before I had relationship with my Savior! It wasn’t until then, that I was able to speak to my God freely! My husbands drug addiction has cemented my relationship with God. Here are some questions I’ve recently asked God. 

* How do you walk into the unknown and still be able to confidently, fearlessly, without hesitation trust God? 

* How am I expected to stay calm in the midst of a crisis? 

* Are you ever really prepared for your trials? 

* Are you ever really expected to keep it together by God? 

* What does God expect you to do? 

* What behaviors are acceptable during your crisis? 

* Is this really Gods Will? 

* Am I worthy of His promises?

* How do I remain focused? 

* What am I focusing on? 

* Am I walking blindly? 

* Is it ok to ask God for a timeline? 

* When is it going to end? 

* How is this situation going to work for my good? 

* Why is not ok to give up? 

* What does 100% trust in God look like? 

* Doubt is not sin. How can I keep my Faith strong? 

* God gives you next steps, what’s your next step? 

* How should you pray? 

* Is it okay to to talk about it? 

* How do you keep self control?

* How do you keep from losing touch with reality? 

* How Am I supposed to sleep? 

I’ve wrestled with these questions during this season in my life, but I’ve been able to trust God regardless. It’s ok to be human. It’s ok to ask God questions. It’s ok!! 

Pray like this: Lord Jesus, I don’t understand what’s going on but you do. I don’t know what to do but I trust you will guide me. Jesus this storm is a tough one but I know you are in it. God what I am feeling are the simply the winds that have collided with your wing over me. You have got me covered and what I am feeling is temporary. I believe in you! I believe that this too will be worked out for my Good, for your greater purpose! Love you! 

Incompatibility Factor 

I’ve written about conflict before, and I’m sure you have read and heard many teachings/books on the subject. Why is it such an important subject? How many books are there out on the shelves that talk about, give a theory on or try to simplify Conflict? If you just use your web browser, you would find that there are over 100 books just this year alone on Conflict. What is Conflict? How can we successfully “navigate” this “storm” conflict in our lives? How can we resolve it? Conflict defined: is a serious disagreement that last longer than expected, something that it dragged out. Not handled timely. Another definition says that conflict is an incompatibility between two principles. What is an incompatibility? One dictionary describes it as the inability to coexist. I heard Rick Warren say that incompatibility was a choice. That we can chose to get along, we chose who we love-there is no such thing as incompatibility, that’s just an excuse for our own reluctant behavior towards others. 

It’s basically a cop out to reneging any and all commitments made. It’s part of our sinful nature. Incompatibility is simply the excuse we concocted to release ourselfves from the hardships of a commitment. So we can, not feel guilty about ending a relationship. As Christians we are not meant to manage conflict, we are called to solve it if at all dependent on us Romans 12:18. This means that you are solely responsible for your reaction to conflict. You are called to be peacemaker but you cannot force peace on others. That’s called navigating through it, managing it although not ideal. Not everyone will be your friend, if Facebook existed when Jesus was here He would only have 12 close friends. One unfriended him several times and then came back (Peter). One blocked Jesus completely from his life after his betrayal (Judas). One update his status as disbelief- shock- “I have to see it to believe it status” (Thomas). Jesus was able to navigate all these personal conflicts successfully. How we react to the conflicts that surround us, is a choice not instinct. How do we manage it?,  simple we chose to react like Jesus first! The Bible lays out specifics on how to deal with conflict Matthew 18. 

Wanting and longing for peace, is basically your spiritual tree wanting to produce a fruit (You can produce Galatians 5:22-23) if you are longing for peace- that is the Spirit confirming the inevitable, undeniable capacity for you to produce it. There is zero doubt that you will be able to produce that fruit. However, just like everything it takes time. It is a process. If it weren’t we would all be perfectly walking in Faith speaking truth in Love to everyone we meet. That’s simply not true. It’s an unrealistic expectation. What is an unrealistic expectation? One psychological view on unrealistic expectations is that they will chip away at your relationships, shutting down your goals and steering you into unhealthy directions. Listen, God started a work in you! Which will take time. .Not because God can’t do it all at once but because we interfere with His works. Do not be discouraged because your not at your neighbors level. Do not compare your chapter 1 to someone else’s chapter 42. God keeps His promises. The Apostle Paul also reminded the churches “he who started a work in you is faithful to finish it” Phillipians 1:6. 

You will produce the fruits of the Spirit because you are meant too! 

How do we resolve conflict? We must be intentional when we speak to the one we’ve offended. Matthew 18it! We have to own up to our part. We have to take ownership, we have to be humble, and act in humility at all times. Difficult isn’t it? Here is one way I prepare myself to intentionally handle conflict this works for me:  

I Make a list, of all the good things I know about that person. Think about it like this, what does God see? He sees son, Jesus! God focuses on the Good and continues to develop our character He doesn’t quit on us. Neither should you! After making that list I pray over every single item on that list- thank God for them. Now, you have held captive your thoughts- you’ve taken control of your thoughts you’ve submitted them to Gods word! 2 Corinthians 10:5. 

Conflict, will happen. Jesus said this “in this world you WILL have trouble, but relax I’ve conquered it all” John 16:33. That verse also says that He gives us His peace! In Him we have peace! Regardless of your troubles, conflicts with everyone you will have peace through them because Jesus conquered it all for you. Meaning Jesus showed us how he dealt with His own conflict. He also gave us details on how to handle conflict too. He is the King of conflict resolution! 

He extinguished the greatest conflict of all. The conflict of death and sin. The principle that we could not coexist with God. He resolved it by dying on the cross for us. He solve that long incompatibility factor by making the choice to extinguish it once and for all! 

Pray like this: Jesus, I confess there is conflict in my life with people I have relationship with. Jesus empower me by your word and your model to commit to my relationships never giving up like you did for me. Lord help me chose to love. Jesus I thank you for extinguishing the greatest conflict of all. For taking on death and sin and dying in the cross for me. For taking what was my punishment. Jesus help me to be an extension of you. Amen. 

Who Are You Now? Not Then.

Who you were then (past) needs to be used as a learning block to step into your future purpose God designed for you. Do not let your past define your future! Let me just say that again. Do not let who you were affect the person God has called you to be. Instead, Use the “then” to propell you into the  “present & future”. We must take all our thoughts captive!

2 Corinthians 10:5Amplified Bible (AMP)

We are destroying sophisticated arguments and every exalted and proud thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought and purpose captive to the obedience of Christ,

Your identity NOW in Christ is totally different than that you’ve always known. The enemy creeps into our minds daily by inserting a few of his favorite sayings, which are meant to destroy you. Do not allow the enemy to destroy you! Do not give the enemy a foothold! Ephesians 4:27 NIV “and do not give the devil a foothold”. Paul is giving the Ephesians instructions on how to live a Christian life. Why is it necessary to remind them? Simple, they were humans, who just like us from time to time need to be reminded. We need to be reminded by our fellow “battle buddies” that we cannot lose sight of the prize. We must remain focused. Here are a couple of Bible verses that will remind you of your identity in Christ!

Romans 15:7 AMP Therefore, [continue to] accept and welcome one another, just as Christ has accepted and welcomed us to the glory of [our great] God. You are accepted just the way you are. There is nothing about you that you need to change in order to be loved and accepted by God.

Psalms 139:14 ESV I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.

You aren’t just anything. You were made specifically with one purpose. God took His time creating you. Think about it when He wanted light He said, “Let there be light” Genesis 1:3 NIV “and there was light”. However, when He created you He took His time. He said “Let us make mankind in our image.. (v.20) The word make, suggest to us there was a process. In English the word make has synonyms among them is the word compose. The scripture suggest that God is an artist; therefore it is easy to understand that we have been composed, put together by the Master in His image (v 20).

Ephesians 1:18-20 You are empowered.

John 10:28 You are secure.

Isaiah 43:1 You are redeemed.

Matthew 6:25-34 You are provided for.

1 John 4:16,18 You are loved.

Galatians 5:13 You are free.

1 Samuel 16:7 You are known.

1 Peter 2:9 You are chosen.

2 Peter 1:3 You are enough.

Philippians 4:13 You are strong.

Romans 8:37 You are victorious.

Philippians 1:6 You are His forever.

Ephesians 1:3 You are blessed.

The enemy is really good at pointing out our past. He mimics God in everything. He is a real good counterfeit. We have to be able to tell the difference between good and almost good.

Remember the enemy will bring your past life to your memory to destroy you and to condemned you.

The Holy Spirit convicts you it does not condemned you.

Do not allow the enemy to redefine who you are in Christ. “Take every thought captive”- 2 Corinthians 10:5

There are going to be thousands of thoughts per minute coming through all at once. You have to be able to take the ones that are from the gates of hell captive. You are going to have to be able to compare those thoughts to scripture. How do we do this? By seeking Gods face, getting your daily dose of scripture, praying, fasting & fellowship with other believers. Get connected! Life was not meant to be lived alone. We have an army of believers who just like you are fighting the good fight. This army is your spiritual family.

Pray like this: Jesus I believe in you. I believe you changed who I was and is still to this day making something good of me. Lord I believe you aren’t finished with me yet, I am a work in progress. But I am your work! Jesus, help me to be courages-to step up boldly to the enemy and remind him of his future when he tries to bring up my past. The cross has made me flawless. Thank you Jesus for your strength in me! Thank you for breathing life into me. Thank you for your awesome purpose for me.

 

 

 

Train to Fight-Designed to Win.

Paul wrote the book of Ephesians. Chapters 1-3 depict the birth & purpose of the Church. Chapters 4-6 depict what the Church should look like and how it should function. To further understand the context of Ephesians you need to read Acts 19-20 & Revelations 2:1-7

We are designed to Win Ephesians 6:10-24. We have two commands; One battle Ephesians 6:10-11 and Understanding the battle Ephesians 6:12. (We are going to focus on verses 10-12 of this chapter later on we will cover the remainder of the chapter.) God has called us all to one battle. What does that mean? What does that look like? This means that we ALL HAVE ONE COMMON ENEMY. Once we identify the enemy we can then begin to plan our attack confidently because we were designed to win. The Bible says Romans 8:37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. The Bible also says Romans 8:31 What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? We have the greatest ally. We do not need to enter into battle uncertain of the outcome! When Joshua was called to battle he was given assurance that “The Lord your God is with you wherever you go Joshua 1:9. We all have one battle one enemy and the greatest ally we could ever need. We are designed to win! Paul uses very deliberate words he says what he means. He uses the word Finally (10). The English dictionary gives us a synonym for that word it uses permanently. Greek-Final, Finally [Noun] telos “an end,” most frequently of the termination of something, is used with the article adverbially, meaning “finally” or “as to the end,” i.e., as to the last detail. Paul is making sure we get every last detail down so that we are confident when entering the fight in the spiritual realm (invisible war). We are asked to be strong in the Lord in the strength of His might. (Think about that) How mighty is our Lord!! Isaiah 66:1 ESV says that heaven is His throne and that earth is His footstool!! The Bible says “In Him all things hold together” Colossians 1:17 ESV (Read 1:17-20 it is beautiful) I heard Louie Giglio tie this in together by adding that science backs this verse up by providing proof. Laminin the “protein that holds us together”. God is almighty and we are to be strong in Him and in the strength of His might! Paul continues to exhort the church in Ephesus. He “recommends” they wear the whole armor (11). The NIV version says “so that you can take your stand” NLT says so that you will be able to… The Bible simply reminds us that in order to be able to fight this fight (spiritual realm) we must put it all on. We cannot pick what we want nor can we omit some of the armor and expect a victorious outcome. There seems to be some confusion amongst us, myself included. As to who/what we battling against? It’s pretty hard to remain focus on the target when the target seems to be constantly moving. Let me assure you that its not! John 10:10 Says the thief comes to steal, kill and destroy! That is the same technique he has been using on us since Adam & Eve, Cain & Abel, and Job.The Bible says (12) that our fight is not against flesh-and –blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places Ephesians 6:12 NLT The Bible makes reference to this in the Old Testament in Daniel 10:13. The Spiritual warfare was intense. The Bible says 21 days! How long are you willing to wait out for your answer?

Pray like this: Dear Heavenly Father I want to thank you for all you have done for me and my loved ones. You have taken care of all my needs and I trust that you will continue to do so. Lord only you are worthy of all praise. I want to love on you today. Father there is a battle going on, one that I cannot see but I can sure feel. Lord I ask only that when I want to quit and cave in that you continue to have people in my life guide me and support and love on me. Don’t let me give up! Lord don’t let me be a spoiled child-don’t let me actually think that I am able to pick which parts of Your Armor I wear. Remind me daily that I need all of it. Today Lord I want to make sure that the enemy understands that I am not on the fence on any of this. Let it be known that I understand my calling and take full charge of it. Lord guard my heart, watch my lips keep me under your covering God. Do not let me move without you. Stop Me from thinking I am sufficient and that I don’t need you. -Lord teach me to depend on you. Keep me humbled and confident in you!. Amen.