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Archive for October, 2009

Matthew 16:24 Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.

I have begun to carry a pair of small weights when I walk and run on the treadmill. I started doing this last week when I had read that it added endurance and caused you to burn more calories.

Yesterday I got onto the machine, punched in the time and weight information, and started increasing my speed for the warm up, I reached , picked up the weights off of the tray in front of me. I was struck by the immediate reminder of the verse above. I thought about how, God tells us over and over in His Word that the Christian life is not an easy life, and that we must pick up whatever He has given us to bear. I thought of the different kinds of “cross” that we have, some have illness, some have hard marriages, some have wayward children, some have addictive desires, and the list could go on and on. However, He calls us to not stop and get bogged down in these but instead, pick them up and walk out our lives following the One Who gave and still gives the ultimate example to us. CHRIST.

Hebrews 12:1 Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.

While still running, once my goal had been reached, I put the weights back into the tray in front of me, I again was smacked with a scripture reminder. Yep, the verse above. I struggled for a couple of minutes, with what the LORD might be telling me. This is what I believe He was saying to me.

“Deanna, there are two different kinds of weights and if people are not careful, they will confuse them. There is definitely the cross that you must pick up and carry. But there is also the sin that you must lay down. We may confuse the acting on addictions, the complaining in our marriage, and so on as our “cross to bear”, When Christ makes it clear, we lay aside those aspects of our flesh and carry out the calling He has. How we do this is to deny ourselves and follow His plan for us.”

I understand this is a timeless message, and it is also an unpopular one. But I do believe it is for me and for many others to hear and obey. May we lay aside our desire to sin, and pick up the cross He has given us, which is sometimes very heavy.

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My Timeless Redeemer

Romans 5:8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Joshua 2:8Before the men lay down, she came up to them on the roof 9and said to the men, “I know that the LORD has given you the land, and that the fear of you has fallen upon us, and that all the inhabitants of the land melt away before you. 10For we have heard how the LORD dried up the water of the Red Sea before you when you came out of Egypt, and what you did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan, to Sihon and Og, whom you devoted to destruction.11And as soon as we heard it, our hearts melted, and there was no spirit left in any man because of you, for the LORD your God, he is God in the heavens above and on the earth beneath. 12Now then, please swear to me by the LORD that, as I have dealt kindly with you, you also will deal kindly with my father’s house, and give me a sure sign 13that you will save alive my father and mother, my brothers and sisters, and all who belong to them, and deliver our lives from death.” 14And the men said to her, “Our life for yours even to death! If you do not tell this business of ours, then when the LORD gives us the land we will deal kindly and faithfully with you.”

Hebrews 11:31 By faith Rahab the prostitute did not perish with those who were disobedient, because she had given a friendly welcome to the spies. 

Do you ever feel like you could cry, laugh, dance, beat the floor with your fist, and so many other complete opposite emotional acts because you just became so overwhelmed by the love God, through Christ has for you? If so than you will not be surprised to hear that’s where I am this morning! If you don’t experience emotions like that, than I ask that you humor me a bit, because I am having a holy fit in my spirit right now! To think that God chose Deanna Gott while I was still a sinner, lost as lost could be, and was still willing to send His Son, Jesus, the perfect Lamb of God, to die for me, I cannot wrap my mind around it, but how awesome that I don’t have to understand it, to believe and accept such a gift!

I love the story of Rahab. I love that God makes sure we know what she did, and who she was before, He made her what she was meant to be! I love that she had heard enough about a mighty God, and something sparked inside her called “faith”. Faith to believe that she and her family could be loved by such a God and “saved alive.” I love that she did not let the shame of her past keep her from living, actually LIVING, with the Israelites after her salvation from destruction! I love that she raised one of my all time favorite men in the bible, Boaz. (see Matthew:5). I love that my Savior loved her enough to mention this faithful woman several time in scripture, and let us know about her faith. (See also James 2:25)

You may ask me, why I love her? I will tell you. Because this Savior of her’s is mine! I too have a sinful past that God has redeemed from the pit! I identify with her “spark of faith in a Holy God” before she knew Him for herself. I identify with her. No, I don’t have the exact past, but that is only because of Him, too. If left to myself, I would surely have chosen even a more destructive path.

Oh How, I love my Jesus! He did not wait for me to clean up! He took me in dirty and smelly, and cleaned me from the inside out.

He is not a respecter of persons! He does it for anyone who dares to believe as Rahab, that He will save them!

If you do not know my Jesus, the bible says that all you have to do is confess with your mouth, that Jesus Christ is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, and you will be saved! He saves! He saves you!

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2 Corinthians 2:14But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere.

 

A couple of days ago, we received a catalog in the mail that had quite a few fragrance papers in it. My children usually love these things and run to put them in their drawers. 🙂 Well, this particular one sat on my counter for a couple of days, and every time I went near it, I would smell the colognes which were so strongly advertised! Now, if you have known me for very long, you know that the women in my family have a very strong sense of smell. My sweet little memaw could not go to church for a while because of the smells that she was faced with there. (I could totally write another post on what just went through my head when I typed that sentence.) I personally love a few colognes but despise most of them. They give me a headache and I will start sneezing quicker than it took to spray it on!

I wound up throwing away the catalog because of the offensive odors, but until the trash can was taken out, I could STILL smell the stench.

This morning I actually had many things on my heart that I wanted to blog about. I had been reading in Joshua 5-6 and the victory that came from God for the people of Israel, my pastor preached a fantastic sermon last night on the fact that it is God who works in us to the glory of His name, and then I come across this scripture this morning and God just placed them all side by side.

This is what God is showing me; Christ is the One who gives me the victory in every circumstance I am facing, in fact He leads me just like He led the Israelites, in a triumphant procession before I ever see the triumph with my physical eyes! And, why does He do this? So that through me, (I am overwhelmed, He wants to use me) the fragrance of the knowledge of Him spreads EVERYWHRE!

In the Joshua story, Rahab told the two spies that people all over the place feared them because they had heard about their God! It was not the mighty Israelite army they had heard of, but rather they had knowledge of Him who gave them the victory!

I so want to smell like my Jesus! I want to be able to spread the knowledge that He is near, everywhere I go!  Giving Him thanks for all the victories He has done in me through Christ!

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“Deanna, Abide”

John 15:1 “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples. As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. 10 If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. 11 These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.

My Jesus tells me,

“Deanna, Abide.”

I am to do just, this one thing

As I walk  daily, by His side.

In midst of trial and pain,

His command is still the same,

“Deanna, Abide”,

In the storms of this life

If in my home there is strife,

His command alone

brings life,

“Deanna, Abide”

When my heart is full of grief

When my head I cannot lift,

My Jesus told me not to drift,

But rather

“Deanna, Abide”

Sometimes I fear my heart will fail

While the enemy seems to prevail,

 But, my Jesus, stays the same,

And as I call on His precious name,

I hear the Words

As in other times came,

“Deanna, Abide”

When all is going well and good,

My children do just as they should,

My husband and I in each other, rejoice,

I still hear the whisper

of that still small voice.

“Deanna, Abide”

When my days on this earth are o’er,

And I stand on Heavens shore,

I will look at my Saviours

Spear thrust side,

And I plan to say,

“My Sweet Precious Lord,

With the Holy Spirit’s help,

I did all I could to abide.”

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The “W” Word

2 Corinthians 5:7  For we walk by faith, not by sight.

Over the span of, I would say at least 15 years, God will bring me to a point where I believe He is doing some particular thing at that very moment, and instead, I hear Him whisper to my spirit one word. “Wait”.

Sometimes like a three year old, I stomp my foot and demand to know “WHY?” And others although shamefully, I admit, fewer times, I will stay where I am and submit to God’s will.

I have thought a lot about this waiting issue lately. And I want to share what I believe God has shown me through some things going on right now.

When God gives us a command in His word, they are not always with promises attached to them. Example: The first 4 commandments in Exodus 20.

” Thou Shalt Have No other gods before me.”

“Thou shalt not make any graven images.”

“Thou shalt not take my name in vain”

“Keep the Sabbath Day Holy”

 

 

Why, wouldn’t He give a promise with these? I don’t know for sure, but I believe the main theme in these commandments is establishing, “I am God, you are NOT, so do as I say, NOT as you are so inclined to do!”  What is the bottom line?

 HE IS.

However, we do see many, many stories and commands that are like this, “Obedience=Blessing”.  But, what about the times when obedience goes against every nerve in our body, all the fibers of our flesh are demanding the promise before the act of obedience?  I liken it to this; If I tell my 16 year old son, Nekoda, to “go mow the grass, and after that we will go to Lake Charles Music”, where he loves to just hang out and play instruments, if he turns to me, and ask me “when?”, my first response will most likely be, “After you do what I just told you to do.” Now, If he stops halfway during the mowing, comes inside and asks me again, “When?”, what do you think my answer will be? Right! Same as the first. But, here is the deal, if he decides to stomp his foot and demand an answer or perhaps, demand to go to LCM first, guess what I am likely to do? YEP! ”

We aren’t going, you will still obey and now you have to wait longer for the blessing that follows this obedience.”

 

Most of us I think get this principle, but  I wonder how many times, our rebellious, sinful, childlike, flesh gets us into trouble and delays the blessing of our Heavenly Father.

You see, this is what I believe, WAIT does not usually mean, we sit around with our hands folded, pouting, until He gives us the blessing. No, Wait, I believe means, “Deanna, You do what you know to do, do not throw a fit, keep obeying, keep believing, that I am faithful to my word, and I will, when I believe you are mature enough to handle the blessing, give it to you with all of my wisdom!” 

 

OH LORD, May I learn this, teach me, to use the time to obey with joy knowing that you wait with me, and love to watch me grow in my faith with You!

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The Day God Stood Still

 

Mark 10: 46And they came to Jericho: and as he went out of Jericho with his disciples and a great number of people, blind Bartimaeus, the son of Timaeus, sat by the highway side begging.

 47And when he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out, and say, Jesus, thou son of David, have mercy on me.

 48And many charged him that he should hold his peace: but he cried the more a great deal, Thou son of David, have mercy on me.

 49And Jesus stood still, and commanded him to be called. And they call the blind man, saying unto him, Be of good comfort, rise; he calleth thee.

 50And he, casting away his garment, rose, and came to Jesus.

 51And Jesus answered and said unto him, What wilt thou that I should do unto thee? The blind man said unto him, Lord, that I might receive my sight.

 52And Jesus said unto him, Go thy way; thy faith hath made thee whole. And immediately he received his sight, and followed Jesus in the way.

Let me tell you my story,

 My name is Bartimaeus.

 This story is not really about me,

 But rather about my Jesus!

The dusty afternoon was

 Just like all the rest

 Sitting by the roadside

Hoping for the best.

Oh how I longed

For days gone by

when I could see,

 In this present,

I would sooner die.

My family had left, so long ago

Embarrassed of this beggar,

 What was that? Where they went?

I truly wouldn’t know.

However, I did have one ,close friend,

 This friend was there

From the beginning,

Yes, on him, I could depend.

What was their name?

My cloak, my cloak

Who never cast blame.

Yes, this was my friend,

My one and only,

My “ one great possession”.

At moments this friend,

I was so glad, him, that I had,

But most of the time, I hated the very smell of him,

 How can such a faithful friend, Make you feel so sad?

 I would lay my friend out

 During the day

 Listening for the sound of compassion

 As others passed by my way.

As evening would come

I wrapped my friend around me,

Thankful for the warmth,

Yet also knowing,

 this just shouldn’t be.

Something is happening!

What was the noise about?

“Jesus is coming!” “Jesus is coming!”

I heard the people start to shout.

Hope surged through me

As I recounted what I’d heard

 This man, This Jesus,

He had power that could set me free!

I raised my voice

To join the others,

 “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”

“Hush!” They all began to say.

 “Jesus does not have the time,

Or wish to deal with the likes of you,

 This day!”

I do not know,

What gave me the courage to try,

 But, louder from my mouth,

 Came the same cry.

“Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”

All at once, it was as if

The earth held its breath

All was quiet,

 Except my souls depth.

“Take courage, He’s calling you.”

The same voices said,

I jumped up at this,

 Leaving the cloak and my bed!

Listening for His voice,

My feet walked,

My hands reached,

Wondering about the One

Who on my name had called.

“What do you want me to do for you”

This sweet voice asked as I drew near.

 My voice shook and I began to speak,

 “Lord, let me recover my sight,

So that you, I might see!”

At once, my Jesus answered,

He did not hesitate

He did not tell me as others had,

“I would have to wait”.

“Recover, your sight, Your faith has made you well.”

This is what happened to me, The day that God stood still.

Now, my friend, listen close to me,

This sight I now have,

This One I now see,

He is calling your name,

He is standing still,

No, not casting any blame.

Your freedom, he most desires,

From the cares of your present,

And from your past and its fires.

Answer His call!

Leave off your counterfeit “covering”

  Call on His name ,

And on Him believe,

For He has provided for all

For the great and the small,

 An eternal covering!

He will speak to your heart,

And this He will say,

“Recover, your sight,

Your faith has made you well”.

My friend, today for you,

God is standing still.

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Just Keep Walking

Philippias 3:12-16

12 Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. 13 Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, 14 I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 15 Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. 16 Only let us hold true to what we have attained.

 

I am now in my fourth week of running or walking over 3 miles a day to attain the goal of at least 20 miles a week. However, I have been doing some form of running or walking for a year and a half now three times a week. I decided to start pushing myself more when my mother told me she had high cholesterol and I found out my grandmother does as well.

There have been several things I have noticed through this.

#1. You have to set your mind on the goal.  In my past I could run for 25-30 minutes without tiring. However, I was in a car accident in July ’07 that hindered my ability to continue that for a while and I have had to work at building my endurance. If I look back at what I used to be able to do, I get very discouraged with where I am now. So, No dwelling on the past, Deanna.

#2. Building Endurance is HARD. This is something we as Americans do not like at all. We are used to everything being the easy way, and if difficulty happens than we pitch a fit and lay down and quit.

#3. Incline helps build my endurance. In a literal sense, If I walk on the treadmill, I have learned if I put the incline up as far as it will reach and walk for 5-10min than when I lower it to a level that still is a challenge but yet higher than normal, boy, I can run like nobodies business!

#4. It takes a commitment. People will tell you that diets don’t work, a life change does. If I go into my decision to change my habits just temporarily than I will get discouraged very quickly with lack of results, or have results fairly quick, to just go back to the old way of doing things. Either way, I lose.

 

So what am I trying to say? Spiritually speaking, Deanna must first quit dwelling on past victories AND failures. This doesn’t mean that I will forget or that I should not share what God has brought me out of, what it does mean is that I don’t live there. I press on towards Christ. Secondly, this is hard. This endurance thing. But, I want to do it! I don’t want to be a statistic in the body of Christ that lays down and quits running the race. Thirdly, I have to realize that when the way is all uphill, it is for my benefit. God is working  even more endurance in me so that I can go farther with Him! And fourthly, it takes pereverance. I have to daily commit to walking it out with Him, regardless of how I see myself, my focus has to be on the goal which is His heart, His face.

Today, may I, Deanna Gott walk worthy of the calling. Colossians 1:10 “so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.”

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