‘Tis the Season for Fruit!

 

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“For the flesh desires what is against the Spirit, and the Spirit desires what is against the flesh; these are opposed to each other, so that you don’t do what you want.  Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.”

Galatians 5:17, 24

Greetings fellow sojourners!  What a blessing it is to be in the company of Believers!  Has the Spirit of the living God ever required you to face the reality that you can not walk fully in the quality of love (even as a born-again believer) while operating in your own strength, own emotions, and own flesh?  Have you ever been painfully aware that your own flesh is at war with the Spirit in this regard (as well as other areas)?  Dreadful.

What do we do with the command, “I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:44)?….

~~~If you would like to read more of this devotional or others like it, they are located in my book A Devotional on Faith, Hope, and Love by Amanda Seipel. This book can be purchased on Amazon. I am blessed to serve you!~~~

In His grace,

Amanda

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Seek First the Kingdom of God

“Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously,and he will give you everything you need.”  

Matthew 6:33

God has worked righteousness, holiness, peace, wisdom, strength, joy, healing, and prosperity into our lives. These are considered some of the ways He has blessed us as we seek His heart and His kingdom first. What are some examples that enter your memory of the ways God has blessed you? I encourage you to use this day to write down as a ‘stone’ of remembrance, (1 Samuel 7:12) these remarkable blessings…even if it came through trial.  As I look at the opening picture my friend selected for her worship song, I see the words “empty tomb” on that stone of remembrance!   Offer your worship to God who blesses, loves, and provides for you!

~~~If you would like to read more of this devotional or others like it, they are located in my book A Devotional on Faith, Hope, and Love by Amanda Seipel. This book can be purchased on Amazon. I am blessed to serve you!~~~

In His grace,

Amanda

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Your Post is Significant

“For ours is not a conflict with mere flesh and blood, but with the despotisms, the empires, the forces that control and govern this dark world ~ the spiritual hosts of evil arrayed against us in the heavenly warfare.”        Ephesians 6:12 WNT

It is God who has delivered us out of the power of darkness…Colossians 1:13

When you claimed Jesus Christ as Savior of your soul you entered into the Kingdom of Heaven. God literally transferred you from the control of darkness into the freedom found in his son. Because the two kingdoms of the universe, the Kingdom of Heaven and the Kingdom of Darkness are vehemently opposed to each other they are at war. Therefore, upon this transfer you entered into battle as a warrior in the army of the living God. There is not a choice to be made as to whether you want to be a warrior in battle – you are. You belong to a household (in this case a Kingdom) and whatever that household faces, you as a member also face. It is your assignment. In that assignment, you are given a ‘post’. Consider it your legal position. Consider it your place of responsibility. One meaning of the word ‘post’ is the place where a soldier or guard must remain in order to do their job. Another meaning relates to that which holds up a fence. Can you see how each post is essential in holding up that fence which serves as a boundary line? As you Praise, Pray, Rebuke, and Stand Firm can you picture signs being attached to those post? Signs such as “Keep Out!”  “Violators Will Be Prosecuted!”  “Private Property!”  “No Soliciting!”  “No Trespassing!” “Warning: This Property is Under 24 hr. Surveillance!”  Praise God!

Some time ago my husband faced a health crisis and I had become wearied by the accumulated weeks of the on-going trial. One particular day was tougher than usual and it happened to fall on a day I was leading bible study. Feeling discouraged, I spoke with the Lord about how I could ever go to a group of women and try to encourage them when I was doing a poor job of it myself so I began thinking about how I could cancel the meeting. The Spirit spoke right to my heart and said “I have called you to a post. Your place of victory is at your post. Get to your post!” Nothing like a directive from the Lord to change my thinking! How about you? It did not take much more time before I was out the door! Praise God.

Let’s think of a few of your ‘posts’. You personally may be able to think of more. Your ‘post’ is (1) as a wife ~ no one else can be the wife you were called to be in fullness, (2) as a mom ~ no one else can mother your children like you were called to do in fullness, (3) as a christian ~ you have a specific role in the body of Christ in fullness, (4) as a daughter ~ no one can be the daughter you were called to be in fullness, (5) how about as a neighbor or friend? You have a unique position no one else can fill.

We are in battle as warriors in the army of the living God. As I was reading about warfare I came across the word ‘casualty’ in relating to what can happen to warriors in battle. The military usage of the word ‘casualty’ relates to a person who becomes unavailable for duty due to death, injury, illness, capture, or desertion. In military terminology, desertion is the abandonment of a duty or post without permission (recall the discussion above relating to our assigned post?). The definition of casualty here implies that unless these things have happened to you, you ARE eligible for duty. Is it your hearts desire to be fit for duty? Let’s expand on these words in a spiritual sense since the conflict we face is spiritual. As you picture these words in action in your life also picture the effect they may have on you (1) as you are at your post (Are you holding up your section of the boundary line properly?), (2) as you perform the continual duties at your post that you are specifically assigned to do (praising, praying, rebuking, standing).

Death. Death occurs when our vital organs stop functioning. There also is a spiritual death in trespasses and sins; the death of the soul under the power of sin (Rom. 8:6; Eph. 2:1, 3; Col. 2:13). If this is happening to you, how fit are you for duty?

Injury. Injury occurs when we have suffered hurt, wounds, suffering, pain, affliction, damage, offense, or impairment. If you are suffering these things how fit are you for duty?

Illness. Illness is a condition of being unhealthy in your body or mind. It is a specific condition that prevents your body or mind from functioning normally. Up to the 18th century, the word illness meant “wickedness, depravity, immorality”, or “unpleasantness, disagreeableness, hurtfulness”. These older meanings reflect the fact that the word “ill” is a contracted form of the word “evil”. If you are suffering from some sort of illness how fit are you for duty?

Capture. Capture is an act of catching, winning, or gaining control by force, stratagem, or guile. If the enemy has captured you how fit are you for duty?

Desertion. Desertion is abandonment without consent or legal justification of a person, post, or relationship and the associated duties and obligations. The military definition is the abandonment of a duty or post without permission (a pass, liberty or leave). If you have back slided what are you fit for? Have you maybe left your ‘post’ so that you can check to see how others are doing at their post?  Have you neglected your unique duties that have been assigned to you such as praying and standing firm against the enemy?  Have you expected someone else to cover your post for you?  If you have been a casualty of war it is time to return to your post.

You are a child of the King. You are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus. Greater is He who is in you than he who that is in the world (1 John 4:4). This is our legal position. Lord, we resolve by Your grace not to yield to Satan and allow him access to the post you have called us to. Thank you Lord that our victory will be found at our post. I resolve not to allow the enemy to prosper at my post. It is my responsibility to wear the armor you have given and I trust it will guard against the fiercest assaults of the enemy. In the name of Jesus I stand and believe.

In His grace,
Amanda

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Apologetics Questions

Greetings fellow sojourners!  Here are two apol. questions for our next meeting time which is on the 22nd.

(1)  Does God reveal Himself to man?

(2)  What does it mean to be “born again”?  Why does this matter?

DIVAs you are building your faith and increasing your ability to defend it!  Don’t worry about trying to find the perfect answer to give someone just prepare yourself for a thought provoking conversation with persuasiveness and reasoning…always seasoned with love.  You can do it!

In His grace,

Amanda

 

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No Gray, Just Black and White

“No one undergoing a trial should say, “I am being tempted by God.” For God is not tempted by evil, and He Himself doesn’t tempt anyone. But each person is tempted when he is drawn away and enticed by his own evil desires.”

James 1:13-14

Abraham was tempted and found approved because he feared God more than he feared the death of his own son. James 1:3 discloses that when our faith is tested (by trial) it produces patience in us. Another application of the word trial means solicitation or allure to that which is evil. Satan is called “the tempter” in Matthew 4:3. In the areas in which our flesh is weak, Satan will seek to create the ‘allure’ or ‘temptation’ to sin in that specific area of weakness. Let us not be unaware DIVAs (Divinely Inspired Victoriously Anointed) of our enemy’s schemes so that he outwits us (2 Corinthians 2:11)! There is something spiritually significant achieved when we stand, confront, rebuke the enemy, and get the victory.  DIVAs the issues really are black and white, not gray…

~~~If you would like to read more of this devotional or others like it, they are located in my book A Devotional on Faith, Hope, and Love by Amanda Seipel. This book can be purchased on Amazon. I am blessed to serve you!~~~

 

In His grace,
Amanda

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Apologetics and Prayer

Greetings sweet things!  Just in case I have not told you lately, You bless me!!  Here are two apologetics questions for next week.  Choose one to answer or answer both of you like.  If you were the main speaker last time let’s give someone else an opportunity to test the waters this time.  Thank you all for caring so much and loving each other!

♥  What is your response to the following observation by Noam Chomsky:  “The Bible is probably the most genocidal book in the literary cannon”?

♥  What is your response to the statement:  “The Bible is simply the work of a great conspiracy, where people sought to create a religion of their own”?

You can do it!  When you spend time answering questions like this you build your faith.  Don’t worry about right/wrong answers, we are merely working to build our faith and confidence so that we can reply to someone who might pose statements like these.

Please include your name if you desire to pray and fast with me this next week.  In class I mentioned how I wanted the victorious life of Jesus to be SO alive in us that (1) we can’t help but speak about it, (2) people are moved by the love of Christ in us that it creates a spark in someone else (we don’t require others to create our spark),  (3) the Spirit in us can’t help but be recognized!

Praying blessings of abundant faith, hope, and love over you!  Praying for the jaw-dropping love of Jesus to become ‘viral’ through us!  Can you ACTIVELY show the love of Jesus (sacrificial type of love) throughout your day?  What if we ‘sacrificially‘ demonstrate love towards someone once tomorrow, twice the next day, three times the next, four times the next and so on until it has become a non-stop habit?  Let’s be bold DIVAs!

Let me know if you are in!

Amanda

**Here are some thought question to consider to help you get started or to aid in your research courtesy of my boys♥!!

(1) Who is Noam Chomsky? What does he believe? Why does he believe the question is true?

~Define genocidal

~Define literary canon

~What parts of the bible are ‘genocidal’?

~Are they really of a genocidal nature or are they stories of hope and mercy for an undeserving people?

~If they are genocidal what is the impact? Does it discredit Christianity?

~Does it really matter?

~What is the impact for us?

~(2)  (Why would the Jewish people display themselves as a sinful, lawbreaking, war losing people if they made up the whole thing?)

~Apostles suffered torture but held on to belief

~ The ‘great conspiracy’ has survived persecution for centuries

~The bible is more reliable than all other works of history of its time

~There were eyewitness accounts that support what the bible says as true. The eyewitnesses were often not supportive of the Bible.

~What is the impact for us?

 

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