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Devil B Gone

Psalm 68:1 – “Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered: let them also that hate him flee before him.”

Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to the latest and greatest of temptation getter-outers – Devil B Gone. You gotta problem with sin – Devil B Gone. You gotta problem with temptation – Devil B Gone. You gotta problem with that pesky neighbor or overeating or lack of self confidence – Devil B Gone. It’s your one-stop-shop for all problems, situations or ethical questions you may have. Devil B Gone.

Are you laughing yet? Trust me, when it popped into my head, I laughed too! 

But it all started when I heard a Crowder song – “Run Devil Run”. Love. That. Song! It’s upbeat, full of truth and likely to get your hands clapping in praise. Just sayin…

If you had access to something guaranteed to make the devil take off runnin’, don’t you think you would use it? You’d be crazy not to, right?

Well, David wrote the first “Run Devil Run” song right here in Psalm 68. The devil hates God, right? The devil wanted to take His place. You can’t care about someone and want them to be gone. By reason of deduction, the devil must hate God. That makes him an enemy. David says that His enemies flee before Him – “Run Devil Run.” 

So, you, being a child of the King, have God as an ally. So guess what. The devil hates you. He wants to attack you – hence the need for the Devil B Gone. And you have it – Jesus Christ – the Ultimate devil repellent. You walk with Him, you have less problems than if you don’t. Notice how I worded that – I didn’t say you would have no problems. I said they would be less. You see, in the Light of God’s love, problems and temptations look different. Jesus gives you exactly what you need to reject and conquer them. 

But all this hinges on one very important detail – you must be with Him. You can’t be off looking at other things. You can’t be dinking around behind Him. You have to be right there beside Him. It’s the only way this repellent works. 

So, don’t be fooled by the world’s attempt to help you take on something as dangerous as the devil. No, this calls for big guns. This calls for an all out assault on the spiritual realm. And you have just the thing to make it run – Jesus Christ. 

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A little quiet time

Ecclesiastes 5:2 – “Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few.”

I like to talk. Oftentimes, I talk when I should be quiet. I have been known to say things I shouldn’t. Sound familiar?

When I’m praying, I find that many times, I’m the one doing all the talking. I spew out my needs, my wants and my concerns. And yes, God wants to hear them. He wants to address them. If they are important to me, they are important to Him.  

But sometimes I need to be quiet, especially before God. He is the Creator of the universe. He is the King of kings. He is the Lord of lords. He is the Alpha and Omega. And that’s just naming a few of His titles. 

Do I really consider this fact when I am speaking to Him? Or am I rambling on to Him like He is only my friend? I mean, yes, He is my friend, but He is so much more than that, and I think that sometimes I take that for granted. 

Without the blood of Jesus, I would have no way of even being in the presence of God, much less even be able to utter a word before Him. But with that covering, I have VIP access. I am able to talk with the One and Only God. 

I just want to encourage you today to keep that in mind. Remember that Jesus is not just a friend, He is God. And that distinction demands that sometimes we just need to be quiet before Him. 

How to be holy in a modern world of weird – part 7

1Peter 1:13-16 – “Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.”

You know what is becoming obvious to me this morning? (Not that I didn’t know it but sometimes things just hit you between the eyes.) When I think about the last six lessons, I remember this – I cannot be holy without my Holy God’s help. It is impossible. There is no way I can be ready, be clear minded, hope, be obedient or even speak as I should without Him.

Being holy is not something unattainable. Most of the time when I think of being holy I think about walking around in drab clothing with my face down, humming hymns. But that is not realistic nor is it holy. Keep in mind that Peter was inspired by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit came from Jesus. He told us that He could not send the His Comforter to us while He was still here (John 16:7).

So if the Holy Spirit came from Jesus and He is to show us how to be holy, I guess that means that Jesus is our example of being holy. How about that! (Smile with me here! Sometimes the simplicity of it all is enough to smack yourself in the head!) Did Jesus walk around all down in the mouth and humming hymns all day? No, He was vibrant and alive and interacting with people. He was meeting people where they were at, all kinds of people. He was smiling at them, laughing with them, crying with them, eating with them, walking with them, hugging them, healing them and so much more. Jesus took time for Himself. Jesus took time for others. Jesus always lived with the end in mind. He did not let His impending death deter His fruitful life.

We have that same opportunity, princess. We have the capability to live so differently that people are drawn to us. People want to know about why we have such joy in everything we do. Everything – from the way we savor a good cup of coffee to the way we handle the death of our closest friend. You can be holy in each and every situation in your life. You can be ready to do what needs to be done in each situation. You can be clear minded by thinking before you act. You can show hope in the promise of our future. You can display obedience by making the right choices. And you can speak as you should when you respond to someone. You see, being holy is not just one act. It is the culmination of a lifetime. It’s like building something with Legos. One piece doesn’t make the project. It takes hundreds of pieces before the project takes shape.

So, don’t give up on being holy. A good friend of mine ALWAYS says, “one step at a time.” That is how we live a LIFE of holiness – one step at a time.

How to be holy in a modern world of weird – part 6

1 Peter 1:13-16 – “Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.”

“But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation”

I enjoy talking. I like to talk to all different kinds of people. People have such interesting stories to tell. You know, words are very powerful. I’m sure I’m not the only one whose mom has said to them, “if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all.” That old adage has kept me out of trouble many times. And not adhering to it has caused bucket loads of grief.

There is a reason that Peter is encouraging his readers to be holy in conversation. Our conversations should be holy because our heart and mind are holy. Matthew 12:34 – “O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.” Just like “you are what you eat”, so to “you are what you think”. If you put junk in, junk will come out. Philippians 4:8 – “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.”

One verse that I sometimes wish I could hang in front of my face consistently is this: Matthew 12:36,37 – “But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment. For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” If I could hang that out there like you would hang a carrot on a stick for a donkey, then maybe, O maybe, I would remember it! There are times when I feel like my “idle words” are the only things that come out of my mouth. My conversations are not holy.

I am trying so hard to guard my words. But you see, that is my problem – I am guarding my words. I need to let the True Guardian guard my words. I need to let Him have reign over my tongue. Psalm 19:14 – “Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.” I need to ask Him to make my words and my thoughts what He wants them to be.

Today, princess, I want to encourage you to let The Guardian manage your conversations today. Let Him have your words (and your actions, because sometimes actions speak louder than words). Don’t speak unless you would say your words in front of Jesus. Let me tell you this, that will put a halt to several things that come out of your mouth. And don’t worry when others start to think you are weird. It’s all part of the process – being holy in a modern world of weird.

How to be holy in a modern world of weird – part 1

1 Peter 1:13-16 – “Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.”

Are you weird? Some days I feel like I am. We don’t have cable or satellite at our house. We go to church every time that the doors are open. Our family loves each other. Things that don’t seen weird to me astound the outside world. They don’t understand how we function without the television on all the time. They don’t understand how two people who got married when they were twenty can still love each other like my husband and I do today. They don’t understand the commitment we have to our local New Testament church. So, I guess I am weird.

But that’s okay. If being weird means I love my husband and my family and care about my worship and service to my Savior, then bring on the weirdness. I will embrace it as my own!

If you have chosen to follow Christ as your Savior, you are called to the same “weirdness” I have been, except we give it a different name, a more fitting name – Holy Living. So, of course, we have to go to Webster’s 1828 dictionary to find the definition for “holy” – “Properly, whole, entire, or perfect, in a moral sense. Hence, pure in heart, temper or dispositions; free from sin and sinful affections. Applied to the Supreme Being, holy signifies perfectly pure, immaculate and complete in moral character; and man is more or less holy, as his heart is more or less sanctified, or purified from evil dispositions. We call a man holy, when his heart is conformed in some degree to the image of God, and his life is regulated by the divine precepts.”
Do you notice the “more or less” and the “in some degree”? Why do you think that is there? We are not perfect. We do not have the capability of living a life that is, at every moment, holy. We sin. We fail. But does that mean we shouldn’t try? Nope. It means that we have a gracious and understanding Savior who understands our weaknesses and faults and doesn’t hold them against us.

So, over the next few days we are going to look at what makes us “weird”, aka holy. I want to study what a “holy” lifestyle looks like on a daily basis. God used Peter to encourage us to “be holy; for I am holy”. So I think that it is prudent to learn how to be holy in a modern world of weird.