Organizing the Inside 365 Days

Empowering Christian Women To Get Organized and Discover God's Plan for Their Lives

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Organizing the Inside – Day 343 Speak Life Into Your Future

1The Lord took hold of me, and I was carried away by the Spirit of the Lord to a valley filled with bones. 2He led me all around among the bones that covered the valley floor. They were scattered everywhere across the ground and were completely dried out. Ezekiel 37:1, 2 (NLT)

What do the dry bones represent?
The dry bones represent the spiritually dead state that the children of Israel were in. Ezekiel felt like he was speaking to the dead because they were unwilling to change. God wanted to prove His power. He wanted them to remember and know who His is. He wanted everyone to know that He is Lord.

Are there dry bones in your life?
Are there areas of your life that need to be brought to life again? Do you have things in your life that seem dead, inactive like dry bones? Are there things in your life lying useless to the Kingdom of God? What things in your life are no longer productive and pleasing to Him? Did you lose your focus and allow some things to dry out and become like scattered bones? Maybe it’s a relationship that God has spoken to you about mending. Maybe it’s a particular gift or ministry that you’ve neglected. Maybe your finances are like dry bones, unproductive, lifeless, ignored or neglected. Perhaps there are rooms in your home that are used as oversized storage bins and are stale, dark, depressing, and like a valley filled with dry bones.  “Speak a prophetic message to these bones and say, ‘Dry bones, listen to the word of the LORD! Ezekiel 37:4 (NLT)

Can speaking the Word of God over things in your life change anything?
I believe it certainly can. I understand that this scripture reference  is perhaps a bit out of context.  This does not negate the power behind the truth found in that scripture. God’s character and nature are consistent. His principles of truth are timeless and transcend any situation. If Ezekiel can speak the prophetic message of life and hope to a valley of dry bones, then surely you can speak the Word of God over areas of your life that are dry and unproductive. God didn’t fill His Words full of life and power just to impress people.  He did it to ensure His Word would get results. His Word is full of life because the very essence of who and what He is in His Word. The power of the promise is in the promise itself. That’s the creative force behind the spoken word that God used to create heaven and earth. This is the same power that raised Jesus from the dead. It caused Lazarus to come hoping out of the tomb when Jesus called Him from the dead. You can apply that same power to situations in your life that may seem hopeless and speak life into your future. Speak the WORD.

And he said unto me, Son of man, can these bones live? And I answered, O Lord GOD, you know. Ezekiel 37:3 (KJV)

So is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. Isaiah 55:11 (NIV)

Also Read Ezekiel 37

Organizing the Inside – Day 338 Choose to Live Fearlessly

24Meanwhile, the disciples were in trouble far away from land, for a strong wind had risen, and they were fighting heavy waves. 25About three o’clock in the morningJesus came toward them, walking on the water. 26When the disciples saw him walking on the water, they were terrified. In their fear, they cried out, “It’s a ghost!” 27But Jesus spoke to them at once. “Don’t be afraid,” he said. “Take courage. I am here!” Matthew 14:24-27 (NLT)

Fear can be pretty unpredictable. I’ve often looked up, wondering what has me stuck and realized that fear has reared its ugly head once again. Some say you can smell it, but as far as I know it is colorless, tasteless and odorless. This thing “FEAR” is not something you want to conquer, not really. Fear must be eradicated. I’ve concluded in my limited knowledge about spiritual matters that we cannot make it go away on our own, and wrestling with it is definitely not part of God’s plan.  Although fear manifests itself physically in ways that we can plainly see, it is clearly a spiritual problem.

What happened to Peter when he went from faith to fear? He began to doubt Jesus. Jesus immediately reached out and grabbed him. “You have so little faith,” Jesus said. “Why did you doubt me?”  Matthew 14:31 (NLT) Something happens in the heart and mind when there is fear; there is a sense of being stuck and or you dread the future. Like Peter when someone is walking in fear they start out questioning, (Lord if it’s really you) move on to obeying (So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus.) and end up doubting, (But when he saw the strong wind and the waves, he was terrified and began to sink.) There is only one way that we can truly live fearlessly and that is through Jesus Christ, by accepting God’s Word as the final truth and authority in our lives. (“Yes, come,” Jesus said.) When God says it, we have total confidence to do it.

16And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. 17There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18 (NIV) Fearless living is a choice. We choose to live fearlessly by choosing to live a life of love, and refusing to compromise or doubt God because of what we see.

Organizing the Inside – 337 Power To Be Decisive

Elijah went before the people and said, “How long will you waver between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow him; but if Baal is God, follow him.” But the people said nothing.  1 Kings 18:21 (KJV)

Have you ever been silent when you should have spoken up for what was right?
Have you ever been more fearful of what people would think and remained silent about sin?  Ahab had over four hundred of Baal’s prophets.  Elijah was the only one standing for the Lord, yet He stood boldly knowing that God was with him.  Although it appeared that Elijah was outnumbered by unbelievers, he served the only true and living God, which made him a majority.

As servants of the Most High, we are never outnumbered.  God wants you and me to be willing to stand up against evil.  It is by the power of the Holy Spirit that we can have the courage to stand against evil.  Jesus told the early church to wait until the Comforter came. He said, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”  Acts 1:8 (NIV)

God wants to fill you with the power to stand firm in your beliefs. If you find that you don’t have the boldness you really want, and at times you are not standing up for the truth, help will come.  If in your heart you really are for God, but sometimes you are reluctant to let others know, you’re not alone. Tarry; spend time in prayer specifically seeking the power of the Holy Spirit.  God will not withhold from you the strength and power to be a witness. Ask Him for the power to choose; the power to choose what is right in His eyes and forget about what the masses have to say. (also read Psalm 84:11, Luke 11:11-13 and Acts 2)

Organizing the Inside – Day 335 Seize the Time!

31I went past the field of the sluggard, past the vineyard of the man who lacks judgment; 31thorns had come up everywhere, the ground was covered with weeds, and the stone wall was in ruins. 32I applied my heart to what I observed and learned a lesson from what I saw: 33A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest— 34and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man. Proverbs 24:30-34 (NIV)

If you are like many, you have a few or more things that tend to nag you. These things have piled up because you’ve let them remain undone for a while now. Every time you pass by you think, “Oh boy, I need to get that done.”  You’ve graded yourself consistently with an “incomplete,” but nothing seems to help. Whether its laziness, idleness, a lack of resolve, or something else that’s keeping you from getting things done I urge you to make the decision to do what it takes to get started now. You know the added stress you feel by having that pile of incomplete tasks, only seems to haunt and discourage you more.

Face the facts: You have had time, down time, slow time, day dreaming time, you just haven’t done it. Take responsibility for not handling your business and do something to resolve it. Clearly part of fulfilling God’s will is having certain things in order to allow you to work without distraction. God doesn’t want His children distressed under the burden of clutter and chaos anymore than He wants us to be under financial burdens or suffer lack of any kind. The book of Proverbs is full of motivation and admonishment for those who need a reality check about being idle and wasting time.

Self-control is a fruit we all should strive for. Part of self-control is being disciplined enough to use time wisely. If you want your life to be both productive and fruitful, use the time you have to get things done. Seize the moment! Christian living calls for sacrifice and productivity. Ask God to help you decide what things you need to take care of that you’ve allowed to pile up. He will give you clear direction on how to focus and have greater discipline to get more done.

Here is some additional help to get you started!

Organizing the Inside – Day 333 Happy to Be a Gatekeeper

1How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of Heaven’s Armies. 2I long, yes, I faint with longing to enter the courts of the Lord. With my whole being, body and soul, I will shout joyfully to the living God. 3Even the sparrow finds a home, and the swallow builds her nest and raises her young at a place near your altar, O Lord of Heaven’s Armies, my King and my God! 4What joy for those who can live in your house, always singing your praises. Selah
Psalm 84:1-4 (NIV)

We can meet with God anywhere. He is always there when we need Him. The psalmist was speaking of the temple where God’s Spirit dwelled. Today our bodies are considered a type of temple, because God’s Spirit dwells within each of us (Christians). The church (building) is also a type of temple, referred to as the house of God. We go there to meet with Him and be closer to the people of God. This is part of God’s plan for community. Going to church allows us to corporately worship Him and together along with other believers we honor Him with our gifts and service. An important part of Christian living; this adds to the Christian experience and should not be neglected. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another–and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:25 (NLT)

We need a place that is separate from the world. A place where the things of God are prominently placed, cueing us to worship. Not a place where traditions, and rituals or idols are the focus, but a place that aids our worship of God and supports our need to fellowship with each other. This is the local church. Many enjoy community among comrades in this fight of faith via the internet, but keep in mind there is no substitution for meeting together with other believers. Neither turning on the television nor logging on the internet can take the place of entering His gates, although there are many great messages there. The world is a busy place, full of distractions and bright shiny objects that tend to call us away from what is most important. We are bombarded with information and unjust causes that tug, again and again for our support. Remember to step away from it all and allow God to give you perspective… His perspective.

10Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked.  11For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.  12O Lord Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you. Psalm 84:10-12 (NIV)

Organizing the Inside – Day 326 Organize Your Environment From the Inside Out & Outside In

6And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. 7Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. 8Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. 9Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. Deuteronomy 6:6-9 (NLT)

Does Your Environment Honor God? When I consider organizing the inside I think about how my environment can either help or hinder my efforts. The God we serve is fully aware of all the challenges we are faced with daily. Nevertheless many of the things in our environment that affect our lives adversely can be changed. If you truly want to you can reorganize your environment to reflect a life of loving obedience toward God. Moses wanted the Israelites to be prepared to live differently in the promise land. He wanted them to remember the importance of their relationship with God and how it would influence their lifestyle in the new land they were about to enter. Today we know that our relationship with God is often reflected in how we live. If I love God then the things around my home will reflect that relationship. Organizing a godly environment for you and your family begins with an inward change. The disorder and ungodliness in one’s own environment is simply an outward manifestation of an inward condition.

What is the condition of your environment? Take a closer look at the many influences in the immediate area around you. Do things closely reflect Christian values? The Word of God is what gives us our standard for setting an environment that promotes a godly way of life. Does your environment’s overall condition show submission or rebellion? When Moses gave the Israelites God’s commandments he also gave them instructions for creating a godly environment. The first thing he told them was, “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord alone. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.”  Deuteronomy 6:4, 5 Those instructions continue to serve as a type of school master for organizing our environment; start with the inside (your heart) first. Moses then went on to tell them what to do about the creating the right environment. He told them to surround and immerse themselves in God’s Word. (see verses 7-9)

Think about ways to make your environment more pleasing to God. If Jesus knocked on the door of your home this very moment would you be happy or embarrassed to let Him in. Here is an Environmental Inspection List. Make the necessary changes as God leads you to make sure the environment around you and your family is one that pleases God above all else.

  1. What are the lyrics in the songs you or your children listen to?
  2. What kind of magazines are in your home?
  3. What kind of plots and storylines are in the most recent movies you’ve seen?
  4. What do you do for fun?
  5. Who do you look up to and try to emulate?
  6. What do you discuss during personal phone conversations?
  7. What does your DVD collection look like?

Sin and the world can be very entertaining. The enemy is thrilled when a Christian woman spends her time doing anything other than what God told her to. If your environment diminishes your testimony ask God to help you make changes. What track are you on as a Christian woman? If you are married, whether your husband is saved or unsaved, leading or lagging you should honor him; (Ephesians 5:22 as unto the Lord) but you must also do what God puts on your heart to have an environment that keeps you and your children on the right track. Bottom line is that our environment is a reflection of our relationship with God. Do you agree? Share your thoughts.

Organizing the Inside – Day 325 You’re Just Not Like Most People

But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light: 1 Peter 2:9 (KJV)

The term “like most people” is too often used within the Christian community. The fact is: we are not like most people. We must be ready to accept the appointed responsibility of being a royal priesthood. God wants you and me to be different.
(2 Corinthians 6:17) We have been called out, set aside and consecrated unto God for His good pleasure. We therefore ought to refrain from comparing our lifestyle and choices to this world’s standards of right and wrong.  The things that the world finds perfectly acceptable and permissible we ought to find offensive. We don’t rely on the systems of this world like some; our source and hope is Christ.  Strange and peculiar, particularly odd at times, the world may not understand how we think and react, especially if we think and react like God’s chosen people.

We bring hope and light to a lost and dying generation. “You are the salt of the earth… Matthew 5:13a (NLT) We are different; but not just for the sake of being different, but because we hold up God’s standard of righteousness as warriors in His great army. Therefore let us never again revert to comparing ourselves to the world. Stay away from being like most people; most people are on the wrong road. …For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. 14But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life and only a few find it. Matthew 7:13b-14 (NIV) Let’s take a stand for what is right and trust God to honor and reward those choices. Having been born again we are no longer of this world. We are strangers in a foreign land, but the Word and hope of God is our song.  Certainly we are in the world, but we are not of the world. We do not love the world nor cling to its systems to prosper and find our way. Jesus said, “I am the way the truth and the light.” John 14:6 (NLT ) Because He has made Himself known to us, we know the way. He said, “…And you know the way to where I am going.”  John 14:4 (NLT)

14I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. 15My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. 16They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. John 17:14-16 (NIV)

Organizing the Inside – Day 322 My Heart Remembers the Goodness of God

1God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.  2Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, 3though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.       Selah

4There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells.  5God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day. 6Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall; he lifts his voice, the earth melts.  7The Lord Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.       Selah

Now about this life we’ve been granted to live by the Lord of heaven’s army. Everything He made was good. (Genesis 1:31) Indeed this includes you and me. (Psalm 119:73) In this life we sometimes experience pain, great pain and deep sorrow. Through sadness and sorrow, death and destruction, decay and deterioration who can praise Him beyond the cutting-in of the pain? Those of us who are convinced His mercy endures forever, and those who have seen the provision of His hand, who know the protection beneath the tabernacle of His wings. In the midst of all the suffering and trouble we are not consumed. In the darkest hour we are not afraid.

When I consider the works of God’s hands and the excellent greatness of His glorious strength, I fall to my knees and honor the One who created heaven and earth. I tremble in awe of His awesome power. When it seems that evil prevails, and the unexplained brokenness of your heart’s mourning core is discovered, be reminded that it is in Him that we find unending grace that redeems our soul from utter destruction.  Life is but a vapor, but this life for sure is a precious gift given by God.

Organizing the Inside – Day 316 Exercising Confident Judgment

4Deborah, the wife of Lappidoth, was a prophet who was judging Israel at that time. 5She would sit under the Palm of Deborah, between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim, and the Israelites would go to her for judgment. 6One day she sent for Barak …. She said to him, “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, commands you: Call out 10,000 warriors from the tribes of Naphtali and Zebulun at Mount Tabor. 7And I will call out Sisera, commander of Jabin’s army, along with his chariots and warriors, to the Kishon River. There I will give you victory over him.” 8Barak told her, “I will go, but only if you go with me.” Judges 3:4-8 (NLT)

Deborah was a strong woman whose heart trusted God entirely. She never seemed to waver and found great strength in her faith. Her inner assurance that God would grant victory made her a great judge and a wonderful example of a strong godly woman.

As women we often feel as though we must first become strong before we can serve God. I believe the message God wants us to understand is that when we are in Him, then we are strong. (2 Corinthians 12:9, 10) Indeed preparation is important in fulfilling the plan of God in our lives, but many times we make preparing the one obstacle that keeps us from actually pursuing our purpose. Go ahead, move forward with the same strong confidence that Deborah had. She relied upon God as she went about conducting business for Him. Even men looked up to her because of her unwavering certainty and trust in the God.

What kind of faith does your life show? Does it show a simple and unyielding faith in your creator, or does it show a trembling mass of uncertainty every time you must make a decision? Deborah was a confident judge who was respected by the people. She took her job as a judge seriously, but it seems clear that as she sat under the palm trees and rendered decision after decision she was not afraid of making mistakes, because she trusted the internal wisdom of the God she served.

Being confident is not about having pride in your abilities or gifts, the contrary is true. True confidence requires us to trust in the One who called us and is far greater. Be confident when faced with decisions, and reject the fear of failure. We are confident of all this because of our great trust in God through Christ. It is not that we think we are qualified to do anything on our own. Our qualification comes from God. 2 Corinthians 3:4, 5 (NLT) Don’t allow your role as a woman to create a preconceived notion against the plan of God. Yes, Deborah was a great leader and she did it while being married. Know that just as God used Deborah’s gifts and abilities, as she led Israel to victory, He will also use your gifts to give victory over life’s battles, as you trust Him. Resist the temptation to be indecisive under the weight of responsibility. It’s easier to say, it’s all just too much, and look for the first rock to hide beneath! Remember, the greater one lives in you and has already won the victory. (1 John 4:4) The pressure is not on you to perform; that sort of thinking will only lead to defeat. Instead, trust God and rest (under the palm tree) confidently in His ability to do great things in and through you.

Trust God to minister to you and strengthen you, precisely when you need it most. Then the one who looked like a man touched me again, and I felt my strength returning. “Don’t be afraid,” he said, “for you are very precious to God. Peace! Be encouraged! Be strong!” As he spoke these words to me, I suddenly felt stronger and said to him, “Please speak to me, my lord, for you have strengthened me.” Daniel 10:18, 19 (NLT)

Organizing the Inside – Day 315 Just Let It Out

In your anger do not sin; when you are on your beds, search your hearts and be silent. Selah Psalm 4:4 (NIV)

Allow God to renew your mind, but make sure you also release the unhealthy stress and pressure at the end of your day. I’m a firm believer that we should never take it home, but that is easier said than done.  Carrying around the frustration, or anger, embarrassment or anxiety that resulted from an intense business meeting or a highly emotional exchange is unhealthy. Perhaps this is why God’s Word tells us, “…and don’t sin by letting anger control you. Don’t let the sun go down while you are still angry.”  Ephesians 4:26 (NLT) I think this can also be applied to other strong emotions that we experience in our everyday interactions with others. There is nothing abnormal about stress and anger, but when it comes we must not let it linger. Who among us has never been angry? Anger is likely not the problem, it’s how we deal with it and the reasons why it exists to begin with that is usually the problem.

Talking about it can sometimes help. Studies show that people who have a support system and share their feelings with a trusted friend add years to their life expectancy. It is said that people who have more close friends tend to live longer. The point is this; there is clear guidance in the Word of God about dealing with our emotions and not stuffing them down in an attempt to ignore the obvious. When you feel things are building up, as if you might go into complete emotional failure, do something about it. Be proactive when you feel frustration building. There is nothing ungodly about letting off steam, as long as you aren’t exploding in a way that hurts or offends those around you.

Keep God as your first line of defense against built up anger or stress. Telling Him how you feel and taking time to talk it through with the Lord will give you the release you need to keep your heart free. God and I have had many conversations that began in anger and ended with me laughing. I’ll ask Him things like, “Did you see how she acted?” and “Did you hear what they said?” The delayed realization that my trusted Friend and Savior is also omnipresent, has often provided a bit of comic relief. Once I get it all out I’m reminded, that of course He knows what happened. Find comfort by reminding yourself that not only does He see, our God sees and cares. Certain strong emotions and stress when left unchecked can cause problems down the road. Keeping a journal of your feelings is also another way to let it go. Whichever outlet you choose, a friend, prayer, or writing, just remember that your anger will never achieve God righteous purpose. (James 1:20) When it’s called for repent and ask for forgiveness.  (Psalm 139:1, 2) Keep stress and anger in its place; it belongs far away from your heart. Don’t grieve the Holy Spirit; deal with your strong emotions when they occur.

How do you handle the end of a long and stressful day?

Here is a simple and straight forward article about anger.