Wednesday, Nov 27, 2019

From the Kitchen Table

Victorious Living Day 46

But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe—and shudder! Do you want to be shown, you foolish person, that faith apart from works is useless? Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered up his son Isaac on the altar? You see that faith was active along with his works, and faith was completed by his works; and the Scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”—and he was called a friend of God. You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone. And in the same way was not also Rahab the prostitute justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out by another way? For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.             James 2:18-26

We obey what we believe.  We can’t help it.  Faith without works is dead because faith produces what faith possesses.  We live out what we believe in.  Just as our body without our spirit is dead, so is a life for God without a faith in God.  That’s why we can’t change out what we’re not convinced in.  Our body will follow our spirit.  God made us that way.  This life is lived from within, from faith with hope in love.  Our faith lies in what we are convinced is true and convicted is right.  If we have faith in God, not just that He exists but that He is who He is and what He says is good and right and true, we will have feet that follow God.  We will obey what we believe.  We will have feet that match our faith.  When our feet don’t match our faith, we don’t need to clean our feet, we need to correct our faith.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

From the Kitchen Table

Victorious Living Day 45

But you, beloved, building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ that leads to eternal life. And have mercy on those who doubt; save others by snatching them out of the fire; to others show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by the flesh.  Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen               Jude 20-25

Feed your faith or you will forfeit your future.  We must build ourselves up in the faith for we will be bullied into believing and living a lie.  It’s quite easy to think we’re standing on our own two feet but we’re really standing with the wrong crowd.  If it’s wrong, warped, and weak, we’ve been bullied into believing a lie.  The thing is we can “think” we’re standing up for what good, right, and true.  The only way to stand for what is good and right and true is to feed our faith what is real, right, and rewarding.  There is a table that Jesus sets for us to eat and feed our spirit.  Remember, our spirit lives on what it believes in, what it hears to be true.  Feed your faith!  We feed our spirit by getting into the word, worshiping and by walking with other believers.  Come to the table and feed your faith, feed your spirit.  He is able to keep us from stumbling, to present us blameless, to give us joy.  That’s victorious living.  Ponder His word, pray His work, and participate in His will for your neighborhood.  By the way, if you want to burn hot for God, walk close to those who are on fire for God.  Feed your faith and you won’t forfeit your future, you’ll forge it forever.

Monday, November 25, 2019

From the Kitchen Table

Victorious Living Day 44

​ O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was before your eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified. Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh? Did you suffer so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain? Does he who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you do so by works of the law, or by hearing with faith— just as Abraham “believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness”?  Know then that it is those of faith who are the sons of Abraham. And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “In you shall all the nations be blessed.” So then, those who are of faith are blessed along with Abraham, the man of faith.                  Galatians 3:1-9

We can never forget that this life in Jesus arises from faith in Jesus, not from what we can do in our own flesh.   To live in the flesh is to live from my own human judgment, strength and ambition.  To live by faith in Jesus is to live in His judgment, strength and ambition.  It’s so easy to begin with Jesus but it can become challenging to stay with Jesus.   He calls us to live by faith in what He did, what we said, and who He is.  That’s not how we learned to live.  Paul asks, “who has bewitched you?”  So much of the world operates in witchcraft: intimidating, manipulating and dominating each other.  The children of Abraham are the children of promise because they are the children of God.  They live by faith in God’s promises, perspective and power.  The flesh without the faith is foolish, it just is.  The life God gives us comes from the Spirit who works miracles among us as we live by faith in His judgment, strength and ambition of love.  Did you receive the Spirit by works… or by hearing with faith?  Don’t leave God at home, He doesn’t live in houses built by man but in hearts built by His Spirit.  We learn to live with Him by listening to Him and that’s what makes all the difference every day of our lives.  It’s called living blessed.

Friday, November 22, 2019

From the Kitchen Table

Victorious Living Day 43

Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God. For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake, engaged in the same conflict that you saw I had and now hear that I still have.  Philippians 1:27-30

Paul writes, “Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ…”  Our courage is wrapped up in our conversation.  Your manner of live is your conversation in life.  The Holy Spirit is telling us to let our citizenship be evident by our conversation.  There won’t be courage where there is criticism, condemnation and carelessness.  Life happens, we live in a fallen world and words, wrongs and weaknesses can discourage.  Discouragement is the dagger of the devil.  Let your conversation be the courage of your convictions.  We walk through this life with our words.  Paul writes, “so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, and not frightened in anything by your opponents.”  Let your conversation bring courage into the room.  It’s becoming, inspirational and victorious.  Want to see the victory?  Talk about it with your words and your walk.  What we talk about reveals who we’re walking with in this life.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

From the Kitchen Table

Victorious Living Day 42

Yes, and I will rejoice, for I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance, as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell. I am hard pressed between the two. My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better. But to remain in the flesh is more necessary on your account. Convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with you all, for your progress and joy in the faith, so that in me you may have ample cause to glory in Christ Jesus, because of my coming to you again.               Philippians 1:18-26

Victorious living begins in the spirit & the mind.  Listen for and listen to the voice of courage, it’s a fleeting quality in the church and the world.  It takes courage to live life and it takes Godly courage to live the Christian life.  People are crumbling around us because there is so little courage to challenge the circumstances, conflicts and criticisms of the world.  It takes courage to stand at the side of the sea and tell it to give way.  It takes courage to face our giants.  It takes courage to step out onto the water and it takes courage to speak hope into darkness, deception and discouragement.  Courage is a condition of the mind and the spirit.  It arises from a spirit that owns the truth and a mind that operates in the truth.  Paul writes, “I will rejoice…”  He’s in prison.  He says, “through your prayers & the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance.”  And then he goes on to speak of his “expectation”,  “courage”, and “hope”.  Courage comes from the Christian whose mind is set on and strengthened by God’s word and God’s Spirit.  To have the courage to follow Christ, to obey God, to fulfill the mission, we must let our heart own and our minds obey the word of God.  We don’t get that on our own, that happens as we spend time with Jesus and His believers praying and pondering His word, work and will.  A Holy Spirit courage will release us from a fearful faith, foolish prayers and failing lives.  This world, our families and even Jesus Himself, needs courageous, not casual, Christians.

Wednesday, Nov 20, 2019

From the Kitchen Table

Victorious Living Day 41

​ For we know that if the tent that is our earthly home is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this tent we groan, longing to put on our heavenly dwelling, if indeed by putting it on we may not be found naked. For while we are still in this tent, we groan, being burdened—not that we would be unclothed, but that we would be further clothed, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life. He who has prepared us for this very thing is God, who has given us the Spirit as a guarantee.  So we are always of good courage. We know that while we are at home in the body we are away from the Lord, for we walk by faith, not by sight. Yes, we are of good courage, and we would rather be away from the body and at home with the Lord. So whether we are at home or away, we make it our aim to please him. For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil.                     2 Corinthians 5:1-10

It’s not just what we know but how we know it.  One of the most powerful tools of the enemy is discouragement.  It’s powerful because it deals with the quality of our mind.  We can know something in our mind but if we don’t know that something with our heart than our quality of thinking isn’t going to be good.  If our mind isn’t strong, our muscle won’t matter.   Paul writes, “So, we are always of good courage.  We know…for we walk by faith, not by sight.  We know something when we own something.  We are not alone, and we have the presence and power of God to live this life.  We not only know that to be true, we own that truth by believing that truth in our hearts.   We walk by faith in God’s word, work, and will and not by sight.  Discouragement happens when what we see is greater than what we believe and that can be devastating.  We can overcome what is discouraging, defeating, and deceptive when we know the truth because we own the truth.  We’ve chosen to believe in God’s perspective, promises, and presence.  These will give us the mind we need for the mission we’re on.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

From the Kitchen Table

Victorious Living Day 41

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.  If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.      James 1:2-8

Another enemy of faith is natural thinking.  Our faith determines our focus in life.  It all begins with how we see the things around us.  Once Jesus invited Peter to walk on water to meet Him.  Peter’s faith got him out of the boat but his fear about drown him.  It all begins with “how” we see things.  Will we look at our life and our world from faith or fear.  We can let God’s word or our walk determine our way.  James writes, “Consider it all joy, my brothers, when you meet all trials of various kinds…”  If we think from a natural state of mind, we won’t make it.  Think from the supernatural state of mind that faith in God gives us.  Look at life like Jesus did.  It’s a process but it’s possible because the Spirit of God lives within us.  Judge this day and this life from God’s point of view and ask God for what you need from that point of view.  The testing of our faith produces steadfastness (cheerful endurance).  Live cheerful today, you have God’s word, not fearful, frustrated or foolish. We can blame the world around us, but natural thinking won’t get us supernatural living.   Think big to Live big!

Monday, November 18, 2019

From the Kitchen Table

Victorious Living Day 40

They answered him, “Abraham is our father.” Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham’s children, you would be doing the works Abraham did, but now you seek to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God. This is not what Abraham did. You are doing the works your father did.” They said to him, “We were not born of sexual immorality. We have one Father—even God.” Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and I am here. I came not of my own accord, but he sent me. Why do you not understand what I say? It is because you cannot bear to hear my word. You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies. But because I tell the truth, you do not believe me. Which one of you convicts me of sin? If I tell the truth, why do you not believe me? Whoever is of God hears the words of God. The reason why you do not hear them is that you are not of God.”         John 8:39-47.

“Whoever is of God hears the words of God.”  Our faith is determined by the voice we hear and listen to.  Our spirit operates by faith in what it hears to be true and we think and talk accordingly.  Remember this, the voice of God comes personally and privately.  He speaks to each of us individually.  That’s why following Jesus isn’t about following the masses.  God comes to each of us personally to love us and lead us.  The voice of Satan speaks to the masses, reverberating across the face of the earth like a voice echoing through the canyon.  The voice of the enemy is more political than personal.  It’s more about supporting & sustaining his kingdom than it is our lives.  The voice of the enemy works to command the masses.  The voice of God is personal, calling us to step out from the masses and it is passionate, calling us to live in love.  Learn to hear the voice of God and understand that only those who have God can hear God.

Friday, November 15, 2019

From the Kitchen Table

Victorious Living Day 39

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”           Romans 1:16-17

Here’s something to think about today.  What we believe defines us and defends us.  Paul writes, “I am not ashamed of the gospel…”  There are a number of words that can define us and shame us such as fool, fraud, failure, frustrating, floozy, fearful.  Those are a lot of “f” words that we can earn while searching for acceptance, affection, and accomplishment.  However, there’s something that can change all that and it’s called the gospel of Jesus Christ.   But the power of the gospel only works for those who believe in it for their lives.  It’s only as we let our faith, what we are convinced of and convicted by, work in our lives that our faith begins to refine and redefine who we are.  The gospel (the good word of God) has the power to save us spiritually, mentally, emotionally, physically and so on when we place our faith in God and His good word.  And that word has the power to not only define us but defend us if we will not only desire it but decide on it for our lives.  That God word will defend us from every shameful word of the enemy.  I am not ashamed of the good God word and I don’t have to be ashamed because it works for all those who live by faith in God’s good word.

Thursday, Nov 14th 2019

From the Kitchen Table

Victorious Living Day 38

But as for you, O man of God, flee these things. Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who in his testimony before Pontius Pilate made the good confession, to keep the commandment unstained and free from reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, which he will display at the proper time—he who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone has immortality, who dwells in unapproachable light, whom no one has ever seen or can see. To him be honor and eternal dominion. Amen.              1 Timothy 6:11-16

One of the greatest helps to our Christian faith is just someone else who believes and believes with us.  Why?  Because we have to fight for this faith.  This way that we’ve found is not the way of this world where we find ourselves.  We have to fight for our faith because there’s a constant force against it and it’s not the devil throwing new things into our lives as much as using old things out of our lives and we don’t know it because we’re so used to it.  Real growth in our Christian life happens through relationships where we share together, pray together, discuss together and care for each other in the way.  Relationships are important because it’s there that we are equipped to fight for the faith.  Many people go for the inspiration of the faith in large worship gatherings but it’s in smaller groups and conversations that we are instructed in the faith.  The Bible says that bad company corrupts good morals (1 Corinthians 15:33).  Timothy had a relationship with Paul that encouraged and equipped him to fight the good fight. If we’re going to walk this walk in victory, we must walk this walk in the company of other believers.   It’s God’s way!