Many Christians struggle to appropriate the blessings that God has already provided because they lack the type of faith that all the great men of faith (especially Abraham, Jacob) displayed when they received Gods promises. Jesus said in Matthew 7:7-12 to ask and it shall be given, seek and you’ll find; knock and the door shall be open unto you.  Asking comes from the Greek word aiteo which means demand or petition. Asking is also an action by which a person speaks or communicates his or hers demand. Seek in the Greek means zeteo, which means to look for in order to find. You can see there is a certain expectancy here. Also note that seeking is a visual action by which an individual searches for some thing. Lastly, knocking, which is a form of action by which an individual physically strikes an object. In Luke 11:6-9 Jesus gave an example of a man knocking on his friends house at midnight for a piece of bread. The friend initially did not want to give him anything but because of his importunate or persistence solicitation he rose up and gave him the bread. The part about this verse that I want to illustrate is that the friend did not rise up and give him something because he was a friend, but because of his persistence.

We see sort of a similar idea play out in the life of Jacob, brother of Esau son of Isaac. In Genesis 26:3-4 God tells Isaac to stay in land of Gerar and that God would honor the promise (multiply seed Isaacs seed, give him land, bless nations through his seed) He gave to Abraham Isaacs father. And in Genesis 27:27-29 and 28:3-4 we see that Isaac blesses Jacob. Then in Genesis 28:12-16 God appears to Jacob in a dream and promises to 1) greatly multiply Jacobs seed throughout the land 2) protect Jacob wherever he goes and bring him back to the land. After Jacob goes into captivity for a while, he then is ready to return back to his land although he is afraid of his brother Esau so he prays to God in Gen 32:9 and essentially reiterates to God the promises (to protect him and  multiply his seed) God made to him. Lets pause for a bit — what Jacob is doing by asking God to deliver him is a verbal demand or petition he is making to God by reiterating Gods promise to him. At the same time, Jacob must have recalled (because thats where he received the promise) the dream or the vision he had where God told him he would bless him and his seed. Now here is the interesting part, the bible mentions in Gen 32:24 that Jacob was left alone. This is important because many of us have plan A, B, C, D and Z if God doesn’t come through. Jacob being left alone represented his nakedness, his lack of options, we should have the same dependance on God. Moving along, the bible tells us that Jacob wrestles with God until the break of day. How many of us can have faith for such a long time span? We God saw that Jacob would NOT let God (remember the parable of the friend at midnight) go until He blessed him. Think about that, Jacob would have died had he seen God so he would rather die then let God go without blessing him. We know that afterwards Jacob received his blessing and received the name Israel which means ‘striving with God’.

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The bible does not deny that we will not have problems, tribulations, or attacks (John 16:13) but what it does promise is that WE (true believers) will overcome (2 Corinthians 2:14) by faith in Christ and His word.

In Matthew chapter 3:16-17; 4:1-11 it tells us how Jesus was baptized and then tempted in the wilderness. In the chapter 3:16-17 God  it tells us how Jesus was baptized then the Holy Spirit descended upon Him and He was told by God that He was His son and God was well pleased in him. I believe that this signifies what happens to us when we become born again. We become sons through faith in the death and resurrection (baptism) of Christ and we receive the Holy Spirit and God is well please with us.

The first temptation the devil tempts Jesus with is His identity. The devil asked Jesus to prove whether he was the son of God by turning stone into bread. So the devil used Jesus situation (hunger) to question his identity, that is, what God told him, namely he is God beloved son whom God is well please.This is how the devil operates. He tempts us according to our situation (financial, emotional, spiritual etc) and uses our situation to get us to doubt the word of God. It is our responsibility to prove what we believe by standing on the word of God. Remember Jesus simply responded every time, ‘IT IS WRITTEN’.

Joshua writes in the book of Joshua 1:8 “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success”. So mediating on the word and being careful to follow what it says prospers the doer. This is reiterated in Psalm 1:2-3 “But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law does he meditate day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he does shall prosper.” Paul also says the same thing in 1 Timothy 4:15 where he writes “Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all”.

If you’re not prospering ( not referring to the teachings of prosperity gospel) in your life, finances, health, emotions etc then its probably because you need to meditate and obey the word of God.

The TRUE Gospel of Jesus Christ

Posted: October 10, 2011 in Uncategorized
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Authors calling for new diagnosis called PTED, or post-traumatic embitterment disorder
  • Expert suggests griping for a while to vent, get it out of your system
  • Then keep reminding yourself of the all the physical harm you’re doing to yourself

(CNN) — Kevin Benton had every reason to feel bitter.

During his sophomore year in college, he says, white students harassed him and the only other African-American living on the floor in his dorm in order to get them to move out.

The white students spat on their doors, tore their posters off the wall, and banged on their door at four in the morning. When Benton brought up the problems at a dorm meeting, the other students snickered.

“I felt like I was being bullied, being targeted,” he says now of his college experience 19 years ago. “I knew I couldn’t retaliate in any way or I’d lose my basketball scholarship.”

This was the first time in his life Benton had encountered racism and it hit him hard. He had trouble sleeping, and then over the next several months he suffered panic attacks. Admitted to the hospital, he was found to have hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, or thickening of the muscles in the heart. The disease is the leading cause of heart-related sudden death in people under 30.

So sick he couldn’t walk, Benton lay in his hospital bed bitter and resentful.

“I thought to myself, ‘I’ve never hurt anybody. I serve in the community. I work with youth. I wrestled with God — why did this happen to me?'” he remembers.

The first time Kevin Benton encountered racism, he was in college and took it really hard.
The first time Kevin Benton encountered racism, he was in college and took it really hard.

Just then, a janitor walked by and grabbed Benton’s hand, and prayed aloud to God to heal him. “As soon as she said, ‘Amen,’ I felt like someone had poured cold water on my head and made my heart shrink,” he says.

Benton forgave the students who had tormented them, and three days later, he walked out of the hospital. “If I hadn’t forgiven them, I’d be dead,” says Benton, now healthy and a social worker for the Philadelphia Department of Human Services.

Feeling persistently resentful toward other people — the boss who fired you, the spouse who cheated on you — can indeed affect your physical health, according to a new book, “Embitterment: Societal, psychological, and clinical perspectives.”

In fact, the negative power of feeling bitter is so strong that the authors call for the creation of a new diagnosis called PTED, or post-traumatic embitterment disorder, to describe people who can’t forgive others’ transgressions against them.

“Bitterness is a nasty solvent that erodes every good thing,” says Dr. Charles Raison, associate professor of psychiatry at Emory University School of Medicine and CNNHealth’s Mental Health expert doctor.

What bitterness does to your body

Feeling bitter interferes with the body’s hormonal and immune systems, according to Carsten Wrosch, an associate professor of psychology at Concordia University in Montreal and an author of a chapter in the new book. Studies have shown that bitter, angry people have higher blood pressure and heart rate and are more likely to die of heart disease and other illnesses.

The data that negative mental states cause heart problems is just stupendous. The data is just as established as smoking, and the size of the effect is the same.”
–Dr. Charles Raison

Physiologically, when we feel negatively towards someone, our bodies instinctively prepare to fight that person, which leads to changes such as an increase in blood pressure. “We run hot as our inflammatory system responds to dangers and threats,” says Raison, clinical director of the Mind-Body Program at Emory.

Feeling this way in the short term might not be dangerous — it might even be helpful to fight off an enemy — but the problem with bitterness is that it goes on and on. When our bodies are constantly primed to fight someone, the increase in blood pressure and in chemicals such as C-reactive protein eventually take a toll on the heart and other parts of the body.

“The data that negative mental states cause heart problems is just stupendous,” Raison says. “The data is just as established as smoking, and the size of the effect is the same.”

How to get rid of bitterness

It’s impossible to avoid all events that could turn you bitter. At some point, all of us will be the victim of a crazy boss, a cheating spouse, a spiteful co-worker, or someone else who does us wrong. Some will be even more unlucky, and suffer physical or sexual abuse.

“There are situations that would make even the Dalai Lama feel bitter,” says Raison, also an expert on the mind-body connection for health.

The key is how we react to these situations in the long term.

Here are five tips for how to let go of bitterness as quickly as possible for the sake of your own health.

1. Gripe for a while

“Give yourself time to vent and get it out of your system,” suggests Dr. Maryann Troiani, co-author of the book Spontaneous Optimism.

2. Watch the news

Frederic Luskin, director of the Stanford Forgiveness Project, tells his embittered patients to think about how many others have had bad things happen to them.

“I ask people to watch the news for a day, or read the paper, or go to work and talk to people, and they’ll see that others have suffered and this is just a part of life,” says Luskin, author of the book “Forgive for Good.”

3. Consider confronting the person who’s hurt you

Troiani says some of her patients have found solace in doing this. Other times, however, it can backfire.

“Some ex-spouses are real psychopaths, and hunting them down can be disastrous,” she says. “They’ll just connive and twist things around and blame you.”

If that’s your situation, try writing a letter to the person and reading it to a trusted friend, she suggests.

4. Realize you’re only harming yourself

Keep reminding yourself of the all the physical harm you’re doing yourself by remaining bitter.

“I tell my patients, take care of this bitterness now, or in five years it will haunt you in the form of chronic headaches, fatigue, arthritis, and backaches,” Troiani says.

5. Consider the other person’s mental state

Author Maya Angelou has every reason to feel bitter. Raped as a child, then overwhelmed with guilt when her rapist, an uncle, was murdered by another family member, she was mute for several years. Still, she says she never felt bitterness toward her attacker.

“Although he was a child molester and abused me, I never hated him, and I’m glad of that,” she says. “What I realized is that people do what they know to do — not what you think they should know.”

As an adult, she’s continued that mind-set.

“If someone hurts my feelings or hurts me in any way, I think, ‘This dummy, that’s all he knew,’ and I’m not going to carry this bitterness around with me. I will not give it a perch. I will not give it a place to live in me because I know that’s dangerous.”

Don’t be a doormat

Taking these steps and losing your bitterness does not mean you should be a doormat, Raison says.

For example, consider the classic case of the wife whose husband leaves her for a much younger woman. Instead of feeling angry, she can think about moving on with her life and finding someone new.

“What happens is that the husband who’s been doing the 20-year-old comes crawling back because now his wife looks really good, and the wife can say, ‘You’re a day late and a dollar short,'” he says.

 

http://www.cnn.com/2011/HEALTH/08/17/bitter.resentful.ep/index.html?hpt=hp_c2

http://swordsharp.com/

Your situation should never dictate your faith and confession. You should learn to praise God even in the mist of a storm or when its sunny. The bible says, in Joel 3:10 “Beat your plowshares into swords and your pruninghooks into spears: let the weak say, I am strong”. Our confession of Christ promises should never be dictated by our circumstances. We should always praise and confess Gods promises even if the hour seems dark.

Read what happened to Paul and Silas after they had been falsely accused, beaten and thrown in jail.

Acts 16 “27And the keeper of the prison awaking out of his sleep, and seeing the prison doors open, he drew out his sword, and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had been fled. But Paul cried with a loud voice, saying, Do thyself no harm: for we are all here.Then he called for a light, and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas, And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house”

AMAZING…all Paul  and Silas did was simply praise God and he was loosed from his prison. He didn’t complain he just praised God. And even though Paul & Silas were loosed from their prison they didn’t even run out, they remained there until their ENEMY brought them out. WOW I guess its true what the word says in Proverbs 16:7 “When a man’s ways please the LORD, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him”

Have faith in God

Posted: July 18, 2011 in Uncategorized

If you are going into a situation where you know that you will face danger and opposition do the following things:

1. Read Psalm 91.

2. Ask the Lord to manifest His strength in your weakness so that when you feel threaten, the Lord will strengthen you in that time. And whatever you say on earth, the Lord will speak it in heaven. So if you command angels to protect you, they will. If you ask the Lord to give you peace when fear comes upon you, He will.

To pray for someone in a dire situation pray the following prayer:

Spirit of the Living God fall afresh on this person. Enter this persons soul and put an end to whatever spirit that is not yours. Come into this persons heart and establish uprightness. Strengthen this person and renew this persons spirit. Reform him Lord. in Jesus name.

~ Prophet T.B Joshua