Organizing the Inside 365 Days

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

Archive for Holy Spirit

Organizing the Inside – Day 365 Seek Intimacy With God

“And Solomon, my son, learn to know the God of your ancestors intimately. Worship and serve him with your whole heart and a willing mind. For the LORD sees every heart and knows every plan and thought. If you seek him, you will find him. But if you forsake him, he will reject you forever. 1 Chronicles 28:9 (NLT)

Fellowship breeds intimacy. Intimacy with God is not something that is just going to happen because we hope for it. To know and experience the loving grace of God in a more intimate way we must first surrender, by faith to His divine will. Does God really want to know us intimately? But the man who loves God is known by God. 1 Corinthians 8:3 (NIV) As we answer our heart’s deeper calling in Him, our sincere desire will then be to know Him more intimately.

Let’s not let our needs be the single most important reason which drives us to seek God. Let it be our love that motivates us to give Him more time, attention and interest. The more we seek God, the deeper our desire to know Him becomes. The more we know God, the more we want to know about Him.

Let Intimacy bring about an entirely new gateway to experiencing a deeper commitment in Christ. God wants to do something new in your life and mine.  For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? Isaiah 43:19 (NLT) He wants to give us a new song to sing. As you go about your way, allow the Holy Spirit to put God’s fresh melody in your heart. There are those who will live and die having never experienced true intimacy with God. However, for those who are willing to diligently seek Him, they will indeed find Him. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:13

Live out the purpose God has for you so that through your obedience others can clearly see His goodness. I pray you experience all that God wants for you. May the world catch a glimpse of true hope and contentment because of your life in Christ? For we know that the peace, love, joy, and complete fulfillment that comes from a personal relationship with God, cannot be compared with anything that this world has to offer. May your life be filled with His gladness and song, as you totally commit yourselves to living and celebrating it in Him. May you experience true hope, and the fellowship which is yours through Jesus Christ.  He has given me a new song to sing, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see what he has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the LORD. Psalm 40:3 (NLT)

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Organizing the Inside – Day 362 Identify With Christ

14“You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 15Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16 (NLT)

God will open the door for you to witness. When was the last opportunity you had to witness to someone about the love of Jesus? You can be a bold witness for Christ and not be ashamed of your love for God. If anyone is ashamed of me and my message in these adulterous and sinful days, the Son of Man will be ashamed of that person when he returns in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”  Mark 8:38 (NLT) Let’s get this whole witnessing matter worked out.

First make up your mind that you want to live right (righteously).  Let’s assume you’ve done that. Check! Now, ask the Holy Spirit to give you the power to be a witness and speak boldly about Christ. If you ask and believe, He will fill you full of power. (Read Acts 1:4, 5 and Acts 2:1-4) Next, let others know where you stand. Take advantage of the first opportunity you have to let people know where you stand. They will respect you for your honesty.

Let love be your banner. I’m not suggesting that every time you walk into a room you make an announcement declaring your religious beliefs. I am however suggesting that you ask God for the right opportunity to let others know you are a Christian and that you love God. Do both, because telling someone you are a Christian doesn’t mean much these days. It’s reported that up to 76% of Americans say they are Christians. If you hide your light how will they see Him? You are salt and light, therefore add flavor and don’t cover the light. If your life sets the tone, what’s wrong with that?

Being honest with people upfront will only strengthen you.
1.
You will know they are watching your walk and this (if you are sincere) will encourage you to live upright as you represent Christ. 2. It will encourage humility and honor.  For example: if you act out of character, an apology will seem much easier, and it will give others real interaction with an imperfect person who is living a sincere life for Christ. That is a powerful testimony!  3. When God gives you one-on-one time to share Christ, it will often be because the other person wants to know more about the hope that you have.

Here are a few things you could expect to happen:
1. They will rebel because of anger or conviction and persecute you.
2. They will avoid you all together, all the while watching your life.
3. They will simply watch how you live, and never ask any questions.
4. They will seek God through you by doing things like: asking for prayer or for your opinion about a serious problem they are facing.

Some are searching and don’t realize it. Just as many of us did before we gave our lives to Christ, people are looking for answers, and gathering information. I remember watching how people behaved in church and asking lots of questions. Perhaps you tried reading books about religion or watched religious programs on television. The point is this: when people don’t know Christ, but are seeking the truth they need your light. What God gives you to share may not be a lot of words about right and wrong.

Witnessing starts with the decision to forsake the world and live for Christ. Then you have to be committed to living that life openly before others. Finally, be ready to share the gospel, which frees those who are in bondage to sin. But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect. 1 Peter 3:15 (NIV)

Final thoughts about witnessing:
Some people are not meant for you to witness to. “Don’t waste what is holy on people who are unholy. Don’t throw your pearls to pigs! They will trample the pearls, then turn and attack you. Matthew 7:6 (NLT) Always practice discernment; share the Word as the Spirit leads. Don’t waste your breath on fools, for they will despise the wisest advice. Proverbs 23:9 (NLT)

Never allow anyone lure you into an argumentative debate about Christian beliefs and foolish fables. Do not get involved in foolish discussions about spiritual pedigrees or in quarrels and fights about obedience to Jewish laws. These things are useless and a waste of time. Titus 3:9 (NLT)

When you share the message of truth, if anyone doesn’t receive it… move on with peace and love in your heart. And if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it: but if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you. Matthew 10:13 (KJV)

Always point them to Jesus. My three favorite scriptures for witnessing are simple, yet so powerful. “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hears my voice, and opens the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. Revelation 3:20 (KJV)

That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. Romans 10:9 (NIV)

Be bold and let your light shine. And whether they listen or fail to listen–for they are a rebellious house–they will know that a prophet has been among them. Ezekiel 2:5 (NIV)

Organizing the Inside – Day 360 It’s Time For True Worship – A Way of Life

1But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them. 2 Timothy 3:1-5 (NIV)

Most people refuse to go there. Many will keep doing what they do, until rejecting pure knowledge becomes a way of life. When you and I look deep into the hidden places of our hearts by allowing God’s Holy Spirit to go there, what do we find? Have we spent precious time pursuing our own agendas or does God rule supreme? This is as simple as any spiritual matter can be. Who rules my heart, me or God?

Question: What was the very last thing that He told you to clean up, remove, get rid of, let go of, give up, stop doing or surrender? Did you do it, or are you still trying to hold on to what you want?

There is a judge for the one who rejects me and does not accept my words; that very word which I spoke will condemn him at the last day. John 12:48 (NLT)

Yes, we know and understand this: So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. Romans 8:1 (NLT) The Word of God is not complicated or confusing… the plain and simple truth is clear. Those who have been born into God’s family do not make a practice of sinning, because God’s life is in them. So they can’t keep on sinning, because they are children of God. 1 John 3:9 (NLT)

I don’t believe the gospel was meant to make people feel good.  For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. 2 Timothy 4:3 (NLT) It’s time for many folks to stop playing “Christian” by assuming a form of what looks like Christianity on the outside, but honestly denying the power of God that would live on the inside. Having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with them. 2 Timothy 3:5 (NIV) Jesus described them by saying, “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.” Matthew 15:8 (NLT)

15Everything is pure to those whose hearts are pure. But nothing is pure to those who are corrupt and unbelieving, because their minds and consciences are corrupted. 16Such people claim they know God, but they deny him by the way they live. They are detestable and disobedient, worthless for doing anything good. Titus 1:15, 16 (NLT)

“The time promised by God has come at last!” he announced. “The Kingdom of God is near! Repent of your sins and believe the Good News!” Mark 1:15 (NLT)

But the time is coming–indeed it’s here now–when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship him that way. John 4:23 (NLT) We must redeem the time!

Organizing the Inside – Day 359 Keep Your First Love

2I know thy works, and thy labor, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars: 3And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name’s sake hast labored, and hast not fainted. 4Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love. Revelation 2:2-4 (KJV)

Keep your Christian life and relationship with God from becoming routine. Faithfully you give daily attention to prayer, praise and worship. In your sincere desire to be faithful has it all become so routine that the energy and passion you once felt is no longer there?  If you’ve tried to make the right choices and spend quality time with God, but feel the excitement and newness you once enjoyed has waned, don’t be ashamed. Why not shake things up a bit? There is nothing mundane or unexciting about the things of God. Instead of your usual quiet time at home, consider an early morning walk on the beach or a hike through the woods as part of your devotional time to change things up. What things did you once enjoy that you rarely do anymore?

Always be a witness!  Remember the anticipation and excitement you felt when you first gave your life to God? If you were like most, you told anyone who would listen about your new-found eternal life. When you share your passion and love for the things of God with others, seeing their reaction definitely keeps things interesting, but it also helps your love for God grow. Sharing your testimony helps strengthen you and others. The next time you walk into your local coffee shop, instead of starting a conversation about the weather, or last night’s game ask your fellow coffee drinker one thought-provoking question. “If you were to die tonight, would you go to heaven?” As the Holy Spirit leads, be ready to share God’s life changing Word. Being a witness (in some ways) is like being a fan; there isn’t anything more exciting than living for God.  While sharing the good news is serious business, it is so much fun! When you are fanatic about the kingdom of God, the more you share the message of truth, the more interesting things tend to become. Continue being faithful in your relationship with God, but share the love.  There is a lost and dying world that needs to know the fulfillment of having a first love.

Organizing the Inside – Day 351 Have You Gained Weight Lately?

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. Hebrews 12:1 (NLT)

WEIGHT as defined by Bing is heaviness: the quality of heaviness in things, determined by their mass or quantity of matter as acted on by the force of gravity, that counteracts efforts to lift or move them. As we consider this definition let’s look at how weight applies to the life of a Christian woman. I believe this is a common concern of Christian women everywhere. There are things in our lives that counteract our efforts to reach our true potential and hold us back from fulfilling the plan of God. Christians pick up habits, pursue cravings and chase after desires for things that (may or) may not in themselves be sinful, but end up superseding their desire to love and please God. This will eventually result in sin.

We know that weight affects mobility. The overweight person is physically hindered or slowed down by all the added weight.  The simple task of walking or running becomes increasingly more challenging for someone who is carrying added weight. The same is true spiritually for those Christians who carry various things from the world that keep them from serving God. Take a moment to ask yourself if there are things that you are carrying that slow you down in this race toward the kingdom.  Ask the Holy Spirit to help you overcome any weight problems you have. It is only by His grace and strength that you will have the power to lay aside any hindrances.

Watch out for subtle things that add weight.
1. False teaching – 7You were running the race so well. Who has held you back from following the truth? 8It certainly isn’t God, for he is the one who called you to freedom. 9This false teaching is like a little yeast that spreads through the whole batch of dough!  Galatians 5:7-9 (NLT)

2. Fear of giving up the past: old friends, old ways and old ideasthrow off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Ephesians 4:22 (NLT)

3. Desires that speak to a prideful craving for acceptanceFor the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. 1 John 2:16 (NLT)

4. Continued observation of sin I will set no wicked thing before mine eyes: I hate the work of them that turn aside; it shall not cleave to me.Psalm 101:3 (JKV)

We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. Romans 6:6 (NLT) For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. Galatians 5:13 (NLT)

May we allow the Holy Spirit to look deep within our hearts and minds and convict us of any heavy thing that we’ve knowingly or unknowingly held on to. 23Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: 24And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. Psalm 139:23, 24 (KJV) Let us then move forward, empowered in His love and righteousness to complete the work and finish this race!

Organizing the Inside – Day 349 Trading In Stress For Godly Freedom

28Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 29Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.30For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.” Matthew 11:28-30 (NLT)

Sometimes as women we become obsessed with trying to please others. Too often you’re willing to spend extra hours, and invest extra resources because you’re driven to please another human being. Some of us are giving more consideration to what someone else thinks, before considering God. When this person is happy life seems good, but when they are unhappy,  perhaps because of something that you failed to do, then things go downhill fast.

This is an unfair and horribly stressful way to live. People pleasers are prone to depression and anxiety because that’s not how God intended for anyone to live. God did however give us an internal desire to please Him. Certainly we know, “The unmarried woman cares for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit: but she that is married cares for the things of the world, how she may please her husband.”  1 Corinthians 7:34 (KJV) So does this mean that the married woman has to end up stressed and pressed on every side, because she’s trying to please her husband? Being concerned, and carrying an unrealistic burden (that God never intended) are two different issues. Although the married woman is concerned with how she may please her husband, an unbalanced approach will lead to an unbalanced lifestyle.

Let go of any unhealthy preoccupation with pleasing anyone other than the Lord. If the godly woman’s life pleases the Lord, I sincerely believe she will in turn please her husband (whether he is saved or not). God will show you how to please your husband without compromising your relationship with Christ. Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. Proverbs 31:30 (NIV) For the unmarried and married alike, it could be a boss or someone else in your life you’ve been worried about pleasing. You can ultimately learn to give, care and love others out of the wonderful freedom and joy that comes from pleasing God first.

God’s perspective brings relief for the people-pleaser. When you take your concerns to God in prayer He will give you insightful solutions to help change your stressful circumstances. Be sure to keep this matter in prayer. Release the tension, that accompanies those deep feelings of inadequacy, and experience the peace of God, by first pleasing Him. This is what it all comes down to. Are you willing to trust the Holy Spirit to make your life pleasing to God first? If you are, then the burden of trying to please others will soon be a thing of the past.

Organizing the Inside – Day 306 Choose Life!

10“Son of man, say to the house of Israel, ‘This is what you are saying: “Our offenses and sins weigh us down, and we are wasting away because of them. How then can we live?”’ 11Say to them, ‘As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways! Why will you die, O house of Israel?’ Ezekiel 33:10, 11 (NIV)

God makes His position perfectly clear to the Israelites. He doesn’t want anyone to perish in their wickedness. The Lord isn’t really being slow about his promise, as some people think. No, he is being patient for your sake. He does not want anyone to be destroyed, but wants everyone to repent. 2 Peter 3:9 (NLT) God’s desire toward mankind is that we would know Him and choose life. I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live: Deuteronomy 30:19 (KJV) He wants us to be in fellowship with Him. Before Adam sinned in the Garden of Eden and tried to hide from God, he had perfect fellowship with God. Even then God wanted to reconcile man unto himself 8Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden. 9But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?” Genesis 3:8, 9 (NIV) It’s not as if an omnipotent God didn’t know where Adam was. I believe God was admonishing Adam to consider the choice he’d made and the consequences he now had to face.

Often times as Christians we make choices without bothering to consider the consequences. Many go about their lives choosing to live according to the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life; instead of choosing to live the way the Holy Spirit leads. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. John 14:17a (NLT) The Holy Spirit is on His job, leading Christians into all truths. The reason so many don’t walk in those truths is because they aren’t bothering to follow His lead. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. 1 John 2:16 (NLT)

God sent a warning to the people of Israel. He sent Ezekiel who was the watchman to warn them of their sins. Sin separates us from God. While it doesn’t separate us from his love, it keeps us from having fellowship with Him. Man cannot truly have an intimate relationship with God while choosing sin over righteousness. One cannot choose to obey their flesh, while honoring God with their mouths, and think the lie they are living is hidden from God. And so the Lord says, “These people say they are mine. They honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. Isaiah 29:13a (NLT) Adam tried to hide from God once he sinned. God understood what happened and exactly where Adam was. God understands your choices and He knows the exact reasons why you made them. Nevertheless, that doesn’t relieve us from the responsibility of making the right choices.

The question is not sin, sin, sin… The question is the space behind the door where you refuse to let Him in. If we are ever going to be organized on the inside, we are going to have to yield completely to the Holy Spirit. The choice is clear; obey God and His commands or obey your flesh and follow your own selfish desire. Will something else have to die because of poor choices? God wants us to be in fellowship and harmony with Him. He provided a way out and a way to make better choices by giving His Son Jesus Christ. He strengthens us to say yes to His will and then empowers us to keep the commitment. He wants our lives to honor and glorify Him in every way. We’ve got to let Him in the secret places.  Allow God to reign, especially in those small and hidden places where truth and flesh meet up. If you check, I guarantee you’ll likely find fear there. This is where life and death decisions are made, within your heart. What will your heart choose today; will your heart choose life? Will you choose to obey God, allow Him to organize what’s on the inside and put that one thing to rest?