Assume The Full Armor of God and Stand

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What is preventing you from possessing that relationship you desire?  Consider the reason (it is not a person) and ask the Lord to reveal to you specifics if need be.  Whatever is restraining you from loving boldly, expressing authentic joy, settling into peace, exercising patience, extending kindness, revealing goodness, possessing full throttle faith, displaying gentleness, and maintaining self-control (Galatians 6:22-23) is a stronghold in your life.  I am not talking about days here and there of unfruitfulness.  What I am describing is a season or seasons of works of the flesh (Galatians 6:19-21).  Remember, idolatry is ANYTHING you raise up to a place reserved exclusively for God…

~~~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!~~~

Praise you Lord!  Our obstacle is reduced to nothing because you are our God!  Our salvation comes quickly because we trust You!  Restore our relationships as we bow our hearts to You!

Amanda

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The Reflection of a Helper

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Genesis 2:18 Then the LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone.  I will make a helper (ezer from the word azar) as his compliment.”  The divine intention here is for the woman to be a partner.

The following scriptures illustrate some examples of the Lord as our helper.  As you read these, please pray they will fall with a fresh anointing of the Spirit of wisdom and revelation.

Psalm 10:14b  The helpless entrusts himself to You; You are a helper (Hebrew word azar, meaning to surround, protect, or aid) of the fatherless.

Psalm 27:9b  You have been my helper do not leave me or abandon me, God of my salvation.

Moses named one of his children Eliezer (God is my help) because he had said, “The God of my father was my helper and delivered me from Pharaoh’s sword.” Exodus 18:4

Psalm 40:17 I am afflicted and needy; the Lord thinks (esteems) of me.  You are my helper and my deliverer; my God, do not delay.

Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, a helper who is always found in times of trouble.

Psalm 54:4  God is my helper; the Lord is the sustainer of my life.

Psalm 63:6-8  When I think of You as I lie on my bed, I meditate on You during the night watches because You are my helper; I will rejoice in the shadow of Your wings.  I follow close to You; Your right hand holds on to me.

Psalm 118:7  The LORD is my helper, Therefore, I will look in triumph on those who hate me.

Then God said, “Let Us make man in our image, according to our likeness.”  So God created man in His own image; He created him in the image of God; He created them male and female   Genesis 1:26-27.  Do you find it interesting that it is intimated here that the creation of the human race “in the image of God” somehow entailed being male and female?  God, the creator and sustainer of the universe created mankind in His image!   From the earlier verses, we are taught that God is our helper.   One of the ways we were created in the likeness of our Lord is as helper!  Being created in the Lord’s likeness, and as a partner to our husband, we are to mirror the Lord as helper!  We can be trusted, we do not leave or abandon, we can pray for deliverance and sustenance for him who has been entrusted to us, we can listen and be gracious, we can be a reliable place of refuge and strength, we can esteem him, we can hold his hand, and we can make him feel triumphant.  Do these things remind you of the preceding verses?

Life is not always neat and pretty.  Life gets complicated and we can get discouraged.  Reflect on the ways God intended creation to work.  Because of our sin nature, we can at times feel to be far form the “likeness” of God.  Don’t fret.  God is good and He proclaimed that His creation was good!  Genesis 1:31  As your heart swells with the goodness of God you will desire to reflect more of His “likeness”- even in the midst of your less than perfect circumstances.  Set your heart on mirroring your Creator and be the helper He created you to be!  It is your calling.  Rise up DIVAs and recall “we are His creation, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared ahead of time so that we should walk in them” Ephesians 2:10.  Have you glanced in the mirror lately?  Whose image are you reflecting?  Yours…or His?

Amanda

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The Path to Jesus

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“And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven will also forgive you your wrongdoing”  Mark 11:25.

Several years ago the Lord revealed to me the pathway to forgiveness.  I was experiencing a time when I felt continuously hurt by someone.  As time  past, the hurt turned to bitterness  and occasionally expressed itself as anger.  I detected no resolution to the matter and probably did not possess a heart for it.  As I am sure you can relate, I also needed to receive forgiveness for my actions but because I was busy defending my own cause I could not see the effect of my deeds.  Isn’t that what usually happens?

Jesus longs for us to know and walk in Truth (John 18:37-38, John 16:13).  He began presenting a truth to me by illustrating two paths.  The first path was initially revealed as a beautiful park.  I was walking along that path and I appeared to be doing quite fine!  As I watched, however, the path began to darken and close in from every direction.  Immediately I knew I did not desire to stay.  The next path I was shown was lined with large, thick thorns.  Both paths were then displayed together in front of me.  The Lord spoke to my heart saying, “If you remain on this path (the beautiful one that closed into darkness) you will not find Me.  If you choose this path (the one with the huge thorns), I will be with you.”  At the end of the thorny path, I saw Him waiting for me.  He was so far away he looked 2″ tall!  Gazing down the path I noticed how large the thorns were.  I told the Lord, “I can’t walk that path of thorns!”  I starred down at my feet and noticed I did not even have on shoes.  In effect what I was staying is what you are asking me to do is too hard!  He said, “I have ointment and bandages for your feet.  I have everything you will need.  Now forgive.”  I said, “You are asking me to forgive?  Didn’t you hear what was said?”  His reply was, “Yes. I heard and I saw and it will be for me to handle.  Your job is to forgive.”  Now I had to choose which path to put my feet.  I determined to endure the thorny path.  Who can resist the Lord?

I did not have to wait long for the opportunity to practice forgiveness!  Before I had a chance to react to the hurtful words spoken, I immediately recalled the invitation from the Lord.  I said nothing with verbal words but in my mind I said, “I forgive you.”  OUCH!  Then it hit me.  The thorns represented pride!  Each step I took down the path to meet my Jesus I had to feel the sting of pride.  It was not the sting of forgiving someone you think owes you.  It was the sting of having to lay down pride in order to walk with Jesus.  Pride is our enemy.  Pride thinks it has to defend your heart against others.  Jesus is your defender (Lamentations 3:58, Psalm 74:22, Romans 12:19).  I could have meditated on numerous words, plotted numerous deeds, and put up several bricks around the wall of my heart and felt justified in doing so!  This time, I chose not to and it was VERY hard.  Would you do it to get a step closer to Jesus?

Not much time past and I had another opportunity to forgive.  This time it was a little easier.  Then the third time came….it was simple!  The Lord visited me again a short time later.  The beautiful path that channelled into darkness was gone.  The path of thorns remained but it was beginning to reveal a beautiful spacious place.  Remember I mentioned I could tell He was standing at the end of the path but was so far away he looked miniature?  No more.  The One standing at the end of the path zoomed up to my face with such speed I can’t even describe.  Glory!  What do you think?  Are you willing to offer someone forgiveness and take a step closer to Jesus?  You can do it!

For if you forgive people their wrongdoing, your heavenly Father will forgive you as well.  Matthew 6:14

…accepting one another and forgiving one another if anyone has a complaint against another.  Just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you must forgive.  Colossians 3:13

Amanda

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A Chord of Three

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“I assure you:  if two of you on earth agree about any matter that you pray for, it will be done for you by My Father in heaven.  For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there among them” (Matthew 18:19-20).  On this day, as servants to the King, let us approach the throne of grace, make our request known, and receive!  (Hebrews 4:16)  Let us approach our Savior knowing we are accepted and are excpected!  Let us apply a fresh boldness in our approach to the One who has the ability to save!  Do not hold back a single request!  We are not timid, we do not lack faith, and we do not bring fear!  Your King does not have a deaf ear, or an arm too short!  Engage your Redeemer in battle with your enemy.  Let’s be clear in our thinking… the enemy is Satan and not one with flesh and blood (Ephesians 6:12)…

~~~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!~~~

Praise you Lord!!  We have heard of your fame.  We stand in awe of your deeds.  In our day, in our time, make Yourself known!

Amanda

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Prepare Your Heart

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My heart is so tender to the Lord right now!  Praise God who gives us authentic joy when He reveals His way that we might walk in them.  How can we resist Him?  When we walk in our own wisdom we are full of pride.  When the Lord shows us His alternative way, how wise we are to immediately depart from our forward progression and choose the Lord’s path instead!  I am going to share with you a recent invitation from the Lord in request to a prayer.  I am so overcome at this moment that I am sharing this with you through tears.   I am so incredibly humbled that the Creator and Sustainer of the universe not only listens to our petitions but even more so desires to direct our wayward hearts!  He loves us!

You can live with your spouse or be around someone long enough to know that conflict exists – whether you would like to admit it or not.  How we choose to handle the conflict is the true element worthy of conversation.  As I pondered an upcoming situation, I found most of my thoughts to be priming me towards feelings of stress and dread.  I earnestly sought the Lord to discover a way to victoriously overcome my feelings.  What He spoke to my heart was this:  “Prepare your heart”.  I did not know how to apply it at the time but I was flooded with peace because I knew He had provided an escape (2 Corinthians 10:13).  As the time of my dread approached I kept reminding myself “prepare your heart”.  Each time I contemplated this phrase, agape (love) flooded me.  As I prepared my thoughts for this writing, I pondered what it meant to “prepare your heart” and found this:  “And he did evil, because he prepared (to be firmly established) not his heart to seek the LORD” (2 Chronicles 12:14 KJV)…

~~~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!~~~

 

Amanda

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What are you thinking?

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“May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable (be a delight) to You, Lord…(Psalm 19:14).  Our words are powerful.  They have the influence to build up and the influence to tear down.  We have been on both the giving and receiving end of the consequence of words.  What about the meditation of our hearts?  The times our words and hearts do not agree?  It is the meditation of our heart that then feeds our words.  Have we believed it is harmless when our hearts meditate on unkind, critical, and negative thoughts regarding a person or situation?…

~~~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!~~~

DIVAs, let’s meditate on the things of Christ for these three remain:  faith, hope, and love.  Let’s have faith for the miraculous, hope for the broken places, and love for the unlovable.  In the mighty name of Jesus we are  empowered!

Amanda

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A Refined Delight

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“You are to make a lampstand out of pure hammered gold.  It is to be made of one piece:  its base and shaft, its ornamental cups, and its calyxes and petals” (Exodus25:31).  And again, “their calyxes and branches are to be one piece.  All of it is to be a single hammered piece of pure gold” (Exodus 25:36).  The lampstand was a vital element used in the wilderness tabernacle, established through Moses and instructed by God.  In order for the single piece of gold to be pliable for shaping into the lampstand, it had to first withstand the continued heat of the refiner’s fire.  The fire softens the gold and also acts as a purifying agent.  The dross (what remains after the gold has been refined) is burned away and the valuable portion of the metal remains.  The dross is of no value and if it remains it lessons the appraisal of the gold.  After this refining process, the gold then yields into the appropriate hammered shape with a delightful gleam and a lasting endurance.  “Take away the dross from the silver, and the smith has a  material for a vessel” (Proverbs 25:4)

“…now for a short time you have had to struggle in various trials so that the genuineness of your faith – more valuable than gold, which perishes though refined by fire – may result in praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:6-7).  Have you ever desired your trial (your hardship, your temptation, your pain…) to end quickly because you imagined the fire of the trial was too searing to bear?  Have you ever wanted to do whatever necessary to escape your fiery ordeal only to find yourself back there a short time later?  Oh Lord give us a teachable heart so that we can learn quickly and not have to repeat lessons!  Like the lump of gold that had no specific use until it withstood the fire, we too must keep our feet to the refiner’s fire and endure the process until we have become pliable for the Lord’s shaping.   Lord,  encourage us to not desire mere escape!  Confirm in us that by keeping our feet to Your fire, the worthless dross of our hearts will be  burned away and what remains will be a refined vessel for the Holy Spirit!

“If anyone builds on that foundation (Jesus Christ), with gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay, or straw, each one’s work will become obvious, for the day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire; the fire will test the quality of each one’s work” (1 Corinthians 3:12-13).  Persevere and desire the refiner’s fire, no matter how uncomfortable it may be, so that we can lay upon the Foundation gold, silver, and costly stones!  Let us stand firms as the dross burns away!

“He (Jesus) will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.  His winnowing shovel is in His hand and He will clear His threshing floor and gather His wheat into the barn.  But the chaff He will burn up with fire that never goes out” (Matthew 3:12b-13).

Come Jesus!

Amanda

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The Fruit of a Mother

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Happy Mother’s Day you blessed DIVAs!  I pray that you will know how blessed and loved you are this day and all days.  For those of you who are not mothers, you are blessed by the ways you love and encourage others!

Proverbs 31:31  “Give her the reward of her labor, and let her works praise her at the city gates.”

Psalm 92:12-15 “The righteous thrive like a palm tree and grow like a cedar tree in Lebanon.  Planted in the house of the LORD, they thrive in the courts of our God.  They will still bear fruit in old age, healthy and green, to declare:  “The LORD is just; He is my rock”

Proverbs 11:30a “The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life.”

Proverbs 12:12b “The root of the righteous produces fruit.”

Isaiah 3:10 “Tell the righteous that it will go well for them, for they will eat the fruit of their labor.”

Look upon the fruit of your labor DIVAs and declare it good!  Is it all perfect?  Probably not.  We will not know perfection until we behold the Lord.  But it is good!!  Declare it so and speak it out!  Satan would have your vision veiled and have you think you can not see the blessing due to the turmoil.  Not true DIVA!   Open those God given eyes and that God given heart and see your blessing so clearly that the turmoil seems veiled!

You are a blessing!

Amanda

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Rattled? Not Me

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“David fled that day from Saul’s presence and went to King Achish of Gath. But Achish’s servants said to him, “Isn’t this David, the king of the land?  Don’t they sing about him during their dances:  Saul has killed his thousands, but David his tens of thousands?”  David took this to heart and became very afraid of King Achish of Gath, so he pretended to be insane in their presence.  He acted like a madman around them, scribbling on the doors of the gate and letting saliva run down his beard.  “Look!  You can see the man is crazy,” Achish said to his servants, “Why did you bring him to me?  Do I have such a shortage of crazy people that you brought this one to act crazy around me?  Is this one going to come into my house?” (1 Samuel 21:10-15)

If you’re like me, you can’t help but enjoy the humor!  David was God’s chosen anointed king! (1 Samuel 16:1-13)  However, he was so rattled in Gath that he began feigning madness!  People called him crazy!  God’s appointed king….acting crazy?  David had stood up to lions, bears, and even Goliath.   But when Achish’s servants recognized him and began recounting his successes, David’s heart deceived him and he was discouraged.  Instead of trusting God he acted on impulse and pretended as if he had lost his wits.  Not what we would expect to see in God’s new king…

~~~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!~~~

Satan would have you behave rattled out of hurt, anger, and fear.  God would have you behave confidently out of love, trust and faith.  What will you choose today?

Live boldly DIVAs!

Amanda

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In the Shadow of Eden

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I am praying for you fellow sojourners as we seek the Lord together for His wisdom and mercy.  I have recently refreshed myself with another look at fasting and its spiritual benefits.  Sometimes when we have done something for a while it profits us to go back and take another look and possibly draw the lens in a little closer to refocus ourselves.  Moses was a very humble man, more so than any man on the face of the earth (Numbers 12:3).  The LORD stated, “I speak with him (Moses) directly, openly, and not in riddles; he (Moses) sees the form of the LORD” (Numbers 12:8).  David himself said, “I humbled myself with fasting, and my prayer was genuine” (Psalm 35:13b).  We want to humbly seek the Lord and His direction in response to our inquiry.  God resist the proud, but gives grace to the humble (James 4:6).  Draw near to God and He will draw near to you (James 4:8).  What a promise!!  Wouldn’t you agree that the fastest way to humble yourself is through fasting? To refresh yourself and for those newly joining us, please open and read the page title “a call for women”.

Ahhh the fame of Eden.  You know the place.  Adam and Eve were placed there by God and remained there until the Fall.  The word Eden means delight and draws a picture of idyllic delight and rest.  A gift from God.  The dictionary calls it any delightful region or abode; a paradise, a state of perfect happiness.  This is what God planned and created for the first couple He joined together.  This is what He would continue to desire for every man and wife that would follow.  Could our home environments be a type or shadow of Eden?  As Eve listened to the tempter in Eden, she allowed her thoughts to begin questioning God.  Is that what God really said?  Is that what He really meant?  She allowed her thoughts permission to proceed regarding God’s intention of good towards her.  After all, wasn’t she only seeking wisdom?  Unfortunately, the wisdom she sought deceived her.  Even in our sin God loves us.  In His mercy He knew what they needed and provided for them.  The LORD God made clothing out of animal skins for Adam and his wife, and He clothed them (Genesis 3:21).  The skins came from a sacrificial animal indicating the cost of sin.  What a love the Lord has in knowing what the couple needed and even in their transgression, He provided for them!  He will provide for us as well!

Know that the Lord loves you and knows what is best in your situation.  Seek Godly wisdom in your marriage.  “For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding.  He stores up success for the upright; He is a shield for those who live with integrity so that He may guard the paths of justice and protect the way of His loyal followers.  Then you will understand righteousness, justice, and integrity – every good path.  For wisdom will enter your mind, and knowledge will delight your heart” (Proverbs 2:6-10).

Take your thoughts captive to obey Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5).  Let the wisdom we seek be His!  Let us take our thoughts captive to the One who can transform our hearts and marriages!  What can you do to transform your home into a type of Eden?  Come Lord!

Amanda

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