Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Jehovah Nissi (The Lord is our Banner)

Moses built an altar and named it The LORD is My Banner; and he said, "The LORD has sworn; the LORD will have war against Amalek from generation to generation." 
Exodus 17:15-16

Sometimes in life we just run up against one dead end after another and one problem after another.  It is hard to keep going and not give up.  We may feel like the Lord has given up on us causing us to feel discouraged.  Discouragement can lead to feeling defeated.  One of Satan’s great weapons against Christians is a spirit of defeatism.  Defeatism is a curse that can overwhelm us and make us lay down our weapons before the battle has begun.  In the Exodus passage from above, Moses was not about to forfeit to the Amalekites.  He turned to the Lord for wisdom, guidance and direction.  Basically, he told God, You brought us here, you will have to take care of us.  If we did more of that today, we would run up against a lot less walls in our life!  God directed Moses in what to do, and Moses followed.  After this he set up and altar and named it after something he had learned about God.
Jehovah – Nissi is an unusual thing to say about God.  It means that He is our Banner, or The Lord is my sign of conquest.  Moses had learned that God would always conquer the enemies of his people.  He learned to let God lead the way and he would taste victory; when he followed God, he conquered.  We fail to experience the victory we could if we only will let God be our Banner.  Many times, we try to lead and expect God to follow along behind us.  If we are going to have victory in our lives, Jehovah Nissi – God the Banner must lead the way. 
Let God be your conqueror.  No matter what comes your way, no matter what sorrow, sadness, or defeat, He can withstand the battle when we are battle worn.  Soldiers come back from war waving their banners high, a symbol of victory.  Let Christ be your banner.  He is our victory over sin, selfishness, sorrow, sickness, and so much more.  Step aside and let Him lead you to victory today.

Scripture to Claim: 
But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us.  Romans 8:37

Tuesday, January 30, 2018


In that day, you will ask nothing of me. Truly, truly, I say to you, whatever you ask of the Father in my name, He will give it to you.  Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.  John 16:23-24

Why is it that we would so much rather live in desperation than expectation?  Why do we say we believe and act differently?  I am always so amazed when God answers my prayers, and yet I asked for His help.  It is always a surprise to me that He is listening, that He cares, and that it actually worked!  When He answers prayer about a little thing, it proves to me that He is in control of the big things too.  He hears, He sees, He knows.  These little answered prayers, about minor things, are a sign to me that He is faithful.  I am so awestruck when it happens because I don’t expect it.  I ask, but I don’t expect an answer and then when it happens it is like magic to me.  It is little drops of hope that He places before me to help me see that He is in control of all the big problems with big hopelessness.  
We pray to God and ask Him to fix our problems, to rescue us, to help us find lost socks, but do we really expect Him to do it?  Do we ask, and then live, in the expectation that He really does care enough, or that He is capable of answering our prayers – any of them?  Large and small?  Some of those little prayers that He answers that amaze me, don’t amaze me because I found what I was desperately looking for.  They overwhelm me with an amazing faith and belief that God does answer prayer, and not only that He answers prayer but that He is in control.  He is in control of the lost socks and of the safety of my children, and the outcome of a loved one’s battle with cancer.  He is in control of this world. He is in control of all things.  Expect it. Live like you believe it.  Revel in the realization of what He has done when a prayer is answered and allow the awe of what has just happened to change you.  

Scripture to Claim: 
Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.   Mark 11:24

Monday, January 29, 2018


For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.  Galatians 5:13

Everybody’s got a word these days.  It seems to be the new New Year’s Resolution.  My word for 2018 is ___________.   If I were picking a word for this year, I would choose freedom.  It is what I most desire at this time in my life – freedom from debt, worry, bad eating habits, etc.   But what is true freedom? 
Every human has four endowments - self awareness, conscience, independent will and creative imagination. These give us the ultimate human freedom... The power to choose, to respond, to change. Stephen Covey
There are many different definitions and many different kinds of freedom.  Freedom to me, does not mean freedom to do whatever I want.  The freedom I am after is freedom from the things in my life that hold me back.  Freedom from the bondage of all these things that so heavily weigh me down.
True freedom for you may look like prison to the rest of the world.  Paul and Silas were in prison and the doors flung open.  They could have walked right out and had what one would assume is freedom.  When the guard woke up and they were still there, he didn’t understand.  To others it may have seemed that freedom was given to them but they didn’t choose to take it.  The truth is that they really did choose freedom because they knew that staying in that cell was God’s plan.  Freedom doesn’t always mean the gates open.  Sometimes freedom is found inside the gates.  They knew it was right to stay when it looked so wrong to everyone else, but it served God’s purpose and plan.
Freedom from sin begins in our hearts and exists only in Jesus Christ.  Through change in our heart and His forgiveness comes freedom from sin.  Only when our heart is changed can freedom come.  Maybe my word for this year needs to be change instead of freedom because freedom only comes with change, never apart from it.  
All true and lasting freedom comes from Jesus, and only when we give it to Him and leave it.  I can fix (or with the help of others) problems temporarily but until I give them to Jesus, they are not fixed, and I am not really free. 
Give. Forgiveness. Change. Freedom.
Scripture to Claim:

But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life.

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