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Building #9 The Miracle of Fruit! and being out from under the curse..

FRUIT HAPPY 2Did you know producing fruit in your life is actually a Miracle? I remember how before I gave my life to Christ and received becoming born again, I didn’t like people much. In fact I had a whole lot of hatred, animosity, judgement, and even bitterness in my heart. 

After I got saved, I could FEEL the love of God rushing up out of my very being. At that time there was a song by Dallas Holmes “I got love, love, love in my heart, I got peace like a river, that never will part……..” (Love in My Heart, Dallas Holmes).

Anyway, I would sing that song and I really MEANT IT For the first time in my life. It was something I could feel, I could grasp it, and I WANTED to go run out and bless people who had hurt me, or who didn’t show love to me first. Why? Because The Love of God was SO REAL TO ME It just flowed out of me. I wanted to ABIDE IN HIM! 

Abiding in Jesus in the Vine is GOING to produce fruit. You don’t even have to worry about it! He will trim off the dead branches and be your Vinedresser.FRUIT HAPPY 1

(John 15)

Producing Fruit is also the evidence the CURSE is broken. Jesus said he became a curse for us. In Matthew 21 he curses a fig tree (for not producing fruit). it withers and dies shortly after that. I believe that story is not only about the power of our words but also it’s an outward manifestation of what happens to us if we are not IN HIM. Without him we will wither (and die). 

Jesus doesn’t want us cursed, and he paid a heavy price to REDEEM us from the curse of the law. Just like when you redeem a coupon, you have to receive it, grab hold of it, and literally cash it in with Him! YOU Have the power whether or not to utilized what He did for you. See in Deut 28 when he talked about them being blessed (Fruitful) WITH HIM and cursed WITHOUT HIM It’s saying exactly the same thing as John 15. In the gospel the shadow is just eliminated, but it is actually saying the same thing!

From the very beginning (Gen 1) God said “be Fruitful!” Not just in spirit, but the Body as well. (one comes before the other, you see?). To be fruitful we must live in the right environment with the Lord. IN HIM! Any man-made, phony balogna, MFG Fruit is not what Jesus was talking about. He alone can make us fruitful! Our part is to give up our own ways, and surrender to Him, and his work within us. 

A Passage about being Fruitful: (2 Peter 1) 5 “But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

by Laura Grace, author, Grace to Grow, Grace to the Rescue, and more …….https://www.amazon.com/Grace-Grow-study-guide-Rescue/dp/197333187X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1518201916&sr=8-1&keywords=grace+to+grow+by+Laura+grace

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When your give a dang gets broken….. Jesus sticks up for you! And the sin of unjust criticism………..

KODAK Digital Still Camera

I’m going to be transparent with you today. Sometimes if I have given (and given) all that I have, and someone gets critical about how I did it, There is a point where I just want to give up on giving at all. There is a song about it and it basically says “My give a dang is broken.”  In the world of biblically-correct Christians, it’s not okay to say that. Leaders go through it (at times) pastors of all kinds, even Mom’s who love their children dearly, experience this phenomina. Pastors and Moms have something in comnon too: They don’t dare say so “in front of the children.” 

I won’t go into the reasons, We’ll just say some days “it all adds up” on us until we reach the tilting point or boiling point, as we may call it. I took it out on someone who did not deserve my wrath (and it’s happened before) All because criticism when I have given it all I’ve got, tends to send me through the roof at times. 

The passage “God loves a Cheerful Giver” was going through my mind. I decided I was not cheerful, so maybe I should not have given at all. Maybe I should not minister at all! I was about to give up, when Jesus came on the scene with his rivers of Living Water and Mighty flood of revelation! 

He said to me “It’s what it cost you” that is getting to you.” And then “Criticism under that cirumstance, is a sin.” 

The story of the widow’s mite came to mind. “She gave all she had to live on” Jesus said and not from her abundance, but she gave all she had.” (Mark 12). 

I know what Jesus is talking about here. I had a friend who typed me letters of encouagement with braces on his hands, because the pain in his hands was so bad he had to wear braces to do it. I just had someone tell me of a gift they are sending that cost them “all they have.” If you’ve ever given your last minute, your only day off, your only 5.00, or given up your only vacation to do something nice for someone else, you know exactly what I am talking about. Smug little sinners with no clue say things like, “Well You should not Martyr yourself!” or they might use a different passage of scripture (God loves a cheerful giver!). 

I have a friend that works full time, and even on weekends at times, but she uses what little free time she has to post helpful scripture on the internet. She Loves Jesus and she gives ALL she has to live on (her wee bit of rest time sometimes) to bless others. When I see someone going on her FB wall having to “correct her” with their “Opinion” I wish I could go and say, “What is your problem?” 

My aghast response to their treachery, is not so far from How Jesus sees it. (He told me so!) However, he also lets me know that he sees every thing we give, and why. 

When someone gives all they have, their last day, minute, breath, or even dollar, (in his Name for his purpose) he sees it, and he commends them for it. Why did Jesus commend that woman? Because, he wanted to get a point across about giving it all (and what it means to him!). Anyone who unjustly criticises those who are giving it all, are sinning against Jesus himself, not just that person. 

Now I ask you? How many people are supposedly “anti-bullying” and yet unjustly criticise the Lord’s servants, who are giving it all they’ve got? So now, what to do about it? GIVE AS UNTO JESUS and let the geese that bite you on the nose after you have helped them, go find their own bread. We need to be about the Father’s business, and doing what he has said to do! 

Later Jesus told his disciples “When you enter a house, speak peace to it and if they do not receive it, your peace will return to you.” Whatever you have done for others will be returned to you………No labor of love is in vain. (Jesus’ promised us this). 

41 Now Jesus sat opposite the treasury and saw how the people put money into the treasury. And many who were rich put in much. 42 Then one poor widow came and threw in two mites, which make a quadrans. 43 

So He called His disciples to Himself and said to them, “Assuredly, I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all those who have given to the treasury; 44 for they all put in out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all that she had, her whole livelihood.” Mark 12:41-44

 

Laura Grace, Author, Grace to Grow

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Building With God #2 When bad news comes: Fighting in faith, and becoming a son and daughter of God.

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“I shall come forth as Gold” (Job 23:10)
 
He will not be afraid of evil tidings; His heart is steadfast, trusting in the Lord. Psalm 112:7
What do you think (or say) when you hear “bad news?”
A Faith Person does not just stick their head in the sand
They are not “unrealistic.”
They don’t deny what is…….
They just deny it’s right to stay.
If an enemy comes up to you and says “I”m going to beat the stuffing out of you,” You are either going to tremble and prepare yourself for a beating ….Or, you are going to think quickly what you can use for a weapon to fight him off.
Maybe you’ll shout “DAD” “Dad, Dad DADDDY ” Or, kick him in the solar Plexis. You’ll either submit to God and fight (in faith) or you will wave the white flag and accept defeat.
It starts out with a bad report: (Your account is over drawn, you lost your job, your health is at risk) and then it goes to thoughts of “You” being homeless, dead, bankrupt, and broken.)
“You will not be put to Shame,” (Isaiah 54 shouts.)
“You will not be disgraced!” (the Prophet speaks further)
Now you have a choice. Believe that, or believe you are doomed.
In 2 Corinthians 6, after saying light should not agree with darkness, and not to consult with idols, says to not touch what is unclean, nor agree with Unbelievers.
“Come out from among them
And be separate, says the Lord.
Do not touch what is unclean,
And I will receive you.”
“I will be a Father to you,
And you shall be My sons and daughters,
Says the Lord Almighty.” (2 Corn 6:17-18) NKJV
Prior to this, what is unclean is described to us. We are not to agree with idols, or be unequally yoked (with unbelievers). It says: You are the temple (And should not fellowship with darkness, and lawless persons) hmm …..
Something to ponder, and meditate on, right?
Fighting the Faith of Faith, along with you, dear Brethren,
with Love, -Laura Grace
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Christmas Story #4 “the Cabbage patch doll”

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12 days of Christmas “Story #4” Cabbage Patch Doll.

When My daughter was 4, almost 5, she really wamted a cabbage patch doll. I believed in God, but I had not given my heart to God (yet).

Anyway, I got her one, and well remember the ridiculous way people acted, shoving each other in store to get one, buying more than one and re selling them for double the price (or more). It was ridiculous. cab patch

On top of that hers got stolen, (in church no less) and that was the end of the cabbage patch doll. I have happier stories to tell you, but I must admit this was during my years of darkness.

I tried to find happiness in my own way, worldly things, and I was not a happy person.

I still loved Christmas lights, but I was convinced at that time in my life, if I only had more money I would be happy.

It wasn’t true. I’ve had more, I’ve had less. Happiness doesn’t come from how much we have (or possess) and certainly the cabbage patch doll turned out to be a very fleeting thing.

I am reminded of the book of Ecclesiasties, where the preacher said he obtained everything he ever wanted, and learned it was all vanity (and chasing after the wind). it’s a blessing to know God Loves us “through it all” even when we have wasted some of our time on vain pursuits. He loves us! so much! He is just happy to see us coming down the road…….coming home……

He doesn’t wait to chew us out or say “Done being stupid?” 
He just grabs us, fixes a big feast, and rejoices over us with singing and tears of Joy! What a great Father we have! “Our Father” who is in heaven (watching for us to come down the road to him!” ……with Love, (til next time) -Laura 

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The Monster of Fear……

FEAR is 1Fear is 2

Fear is a liar and it walks right behind worry. I don’t believe we need another scripture about fear. We know God says “not to fear” but we also know that our bodies do not listen to us, and sometimes, neither do our minds. 

Fear is a liar because it only tells you the circumstance and what has happened to others in this same situation. Fear will never tell you God’s word, or his promise to YOU. When YOU beleive God’s promise you activate heaven to act on your behalf. That’s the truth.

When a huge storm is threatening to take my house down, and I can hear it blowing so hard it’s uprooting trees, yes it’s pretty hard to not fear. Or if someone has a life threatening illness, or if someone is crazy on drugs raging at you threatening to hurt you. WE have built in responses to fear and we cannot (seem) to help that.

Not without valium! So deal with worry first (when it’s small) and don’t just nurture the worry or feed it or add to it or meditate on it! Start fighting this stuff off before it’s full blown! (You’ll be glad you did). 

Therefore, God is not unkind when he speaks to a person DO NOT FEAR (With HIS Voice of LOVE) it will settle you down. Why/ Because it’s filled with Love! (that truly casts out fear) See because He IS LOVE so when he speaks, your heart is settled down. Giving people a lecture is not enough either. 

This is why quoting scriptures is not enough. 

Jesus is enough. Only Jesus. And we need to know Him. I distinctly heard him one time tell me “Do not fear” before I drove into fog so thick, I could not see the road. Because he spoke to me, I knew I did not have to panic, or pull off to the side of the road. He let me know he was going to get me through it. 

Prior to this, I was seeking to know him. “talk to me” I said, be my best friend! “the sheep know your voice” (I would say) see, you can’t know what to ask God for without at least trying to know his word recorded in this precious thing called; 

OUR BIBLE! And he’s the one that helps you understand it so don’t let those overly-educated pious ones tell you any different! HE SAiD (Jesus) 

John 14:26
But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.
I did not say this, Jesus did! So if a great (and worthy) bible teacher is not available or you work Sunday’s at the gas station every week just know this, The Holy Spirit can and will teach you! Believe me! Believe him! Let God be more real to you than anything else in this world! And Father we pray…..that your perfect love and your words would eliminate all of our fears! One by one until it’s done! In Jesus’ name! Amen! 
 

 

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Disciple, or Follower? and Arguing with God …………

Jesus and me

I remember when I went from Follower To Disciple. How about you? A disciple learns from Jesus (Directly) and then Prophets, teachers, pastors and others enhance or solidify this experience. This is how it should be. 

Nobody can “make” a christian like you make a mud pie or a clay animal. You can try, but without the Holy Spirit Breathing the life of God into a person, they’ll still be just as dead. (inside). And worse yet, when the bible is used to create a monster called a pharisee, well, that’s another story too. I tend to avoid the monsters of pharisee-ism, and I dodge them (Just as my Jesus did!). 

Back to my story: I didn’t start learning FROM Jesus until I stopped arguing with him! Listen, how can God talk to you when you are busy arguing? I’ve read books that say “How to hear from God’ and even well, unconfessed sin seperates you (so they say) but listen, if He is my righteousness and paid it all, HOW CAN THAT BE? 

This double-talk has got to stop (law vs grace!) I came to the place where I said Father Jesus either redeemed or he didn’t! If He did then I’m Free (to hear from you) because you don’t see “SIN” when you look at me you see Jesus! Because he paid it all! (at the cross) and BROKE EVERY CURSE! I don’t need to go to some seminar to get free. Now maybe some do, and they get free, but only because their faith limited them to- “I have to get to that seminar, then I will be or get free.” 

I am talking to the people who can’t afford that big seminar (somewhere in Texas, or wherever it may be). To become a disciple, your heart just needs to shift from FOLLOWER to LEARNER. Now you are following AND learning (take my yoke upon you, Jesus said). “LEARN OF ME” (He said) “the holy Spirit will teach you” (he said!) 

So, I took him at his word. (Crazy me!) Disciples Eventually become Apostles, Prophets, teachers (and the rest) if they keep on going (IN HIM!). I may go to a seminary or not but who Makes me (what I am) Is HIM (Plain and simple). 

Just laugh with me as I say this: “GOD cannot get through to you when you are busy arguing! Sometimes I get that feeling he is saying “are you done?” 🙂 

Followers follow so long as the blessing is flowing…….

Disciples understand that someday they are going to do great things, like he did. Followers are more likely to fall away……

As your friend I am here to tell you, God is not going to just “finish the work in you” all by himself. He needs your cooperation! I have lost track of how many times he has said…..”are you done now?” …..”ready for me to speak?” ……..

 

HMM …..With love and somber blessings, 

 

Laura Grace 

 

 

 

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What being A Christian really is- and what it isn’t ….by Laura Grace

xangels 4It just happens I’m in bible college, and a class I’m in right now is called apologetics. It’s a funny name for it, since I make no apologies about what I believe, or why. 

This class helps us think about our Biblical worldview, what others believe, and challenges us to dig deep and see for ourselves why we believe what we do. 

Everything I am about to tell you is based on scripture. If you have a question about that let me know, I will provide all the passages. What I can tell you is I am a witness just like the disciples who followed Jesus

As a child I attended church. I heard all my life “Jesus is real.” When I was in high school I was a big time humanist. I was horrified at the world, the bullies, the mean people, the selfish people. I was a liberal, and very much a women’s libber, as well.

I was mad at God, and mad about injustice, which he seemed to do nothing about. I was apalled at conserative stances, and how christians could talk about love one minute, and throw people under the bus if they got food stamps, calling them “those who suck off the system” and take their tax dollars. For me that was the ultimate hypocrisy, to preach love one minute and be a “hater” the next toward those who were not so fortunate. 

I married badly partly out of pride. I was going to show those conservatives what was what. “HERE I”LL SHOW YOU HOW to love” I thought (since they were so bad at it and all). it didn’t take long to figure out I got myself in a real pickle of suds (and problems). Totally broken. Defeated. In the dark. It was a blessing in disguise. 

It wasn’t long before I found myself in a pile of failure. Baptists knocked on my door one day, asking if I was born again. “I’m a Lutheran” I said, and went to work and laughed at them for being so crazy. Later I was crying, upset, and a Billy Graham message captivated me. I HAD experiences with the presence of God (the Holy Spirit) prior to this. 

When I ran away in high school in defiance, My mom prayed, cried and gave me to God. She said she didn’t know what to do with me. WHEN I was watching Billy Graham I truly realized my sin. Pride. Anger. Unforgiveness. Defiance toward God and others. Judging. 

The Holy Spirit (Via Billy Graham and those that knocked on my door) caused me to see I had believed in Jesus but had not RECEIVED him as saviour and Lord. I saw he was the only way to Salvation. I saw I was a sinner, in need of help. I stopped saying in my heart “Well I’m not THAT bad of a person” and accepted him, gave him my life. I asked him to take over…………

After that, things changed for me. I went on a journey (30 years ago) It hasn’t ended yet. A journey of learning, (from the Holy Spirit) who IS my teacher. I’ve seen so many miracles I’ve lost track. I’ve seen God honor his word and provide for me. 

God is holy. I know this. He wants us to be Holy.  Why? Because if we are becoming holy (more like him) We are deeper in covenant with him. ALL we have is His, and all he has is ours. I’m not a liberal anynore, and I am not judging God for letting the world go to “hell in a handbasket” as they say. He gives us a choice. Me, You, everyone…..”choose this day” who you will believe in. God does not share his glory with any (other god) and he is not a humanist. He put us in the world, he can take us out if he wants to. He made us, created us TO BE HIS SONS (and daughters) 

IF we rebel like satan we are satans’s kids -not his. When I was in defiance, if I had died, I would have gone to hell, and I know that. Yep they were furious when Jesus said “your Father is the devil” (wanted to kill him, and did!!) I undestand now, to be a humanist is to defy God’s discipline, holiness, and who He really is. 

“HOW Dare you!” Their flesh said (to Jesus) How dare you not make us feel GOOD about how we are (in our sinful condition) How dare you convict us? Jesus was crucified because people were appalled he dared to say he was the only way. They wanted his miracles, but not his conviction. The Pharisees didn’t want either because they were already rich (and powerful.) They thought they knew God but they only knew his laws, and not his heart. They were full of pride. 

Well, the road or door to Salvation is to admit we are wrong, and God is right. There is no other way, and there is no other name by which Men are saved.

JESUS ….the name above all names. Jesus………He’s proven himself to me, time and time again. I didn’t take “Someone else’s word for it” I just heard the preacher and said Okay “make yourself real to me Lord.” 

He will rule and reign. Don’t believe me? Ask him! I dare you.

with love, Laura Grace  Author, Grace to the Rescue 

PS: Yes, I am born again. Filled with the Spirit. and in love with Jesus Christ