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Death by Criticism! What does it mean?

cROw

Some are experiencing “death by criticism” right now. And you need to fight for your life and extinguish those flaming arrows with prayer and the blood of Jesus Christ! Criticism should be constructive. Not destructive! 

Proverbs 26:17-19 “He who passes by and meddles in a quarrel not his own
Is like one who takes a dog by the ears.

18 Like a madman who throws firebrands, arrows, and death,
19 Is the man who deceives his neighbor, and says, “I was only joking!”

Let’s think about dogs for a moment. What do they do? Our dogs used to fight over a bone (even if they each were given their own bone!). It was sport to them. Now, dogs to not have the make-up of human beings. They do not ask questions like; “How come you don’t go chew on your own bone?”

The nature of dogs is to fight over a bone, bite for sport, and if someone bothers their home or family “growl, snarl,” and maybe even bite someone! The Nature of crows is to eat your seeds (of Faith)

 

And look at the passage above. How do you “throw” Death at someone?

James says “life and death” are in the tongue (and it can be an unruly evil full of deadly poison!). How so?

I had a friend who called me once, and said how some Christians told her how “messed up she was’ by a certain activity she was doing. I’ve heard countless stories of how someone “Christian” said “do you need prayer?” The person said “yes’ and the Christian (a representative of Jesus by the way) told them how God isn’t going to answer because of sin in their life.

It could be anything from smoking, drinking or living with someone not married yet, to not attending church, or listening to the wrong type of music. THEIR SIN is not your business! It’s God’s business! And their business! and if he has you say anything to convict them A HUGE dose of God love will go out in front of your words so that hearing about their sin will be so full of Love they will say THANK YOU For the conviction. That’s how GOD works! He is not a soul killer that kills people with the letter of His laws!!!!. The letter of the law kills the Spirit BRINGS LIFE!!! 

2 Corinthians 3:6 who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for theletter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

TELL ME one example where Jesus Said they could not be prayed for because of sin? IN fact, even for those IN Christ it says in James “and the prayer of faith will make the sick man well, and his sins will be forgiven.” (James 5). 

So then, death by criticism comes in many forms. The Spirit of God brings life, and a person’s hope is renewed that God’s going to help them.  When someone comes along and says; “He will not” because of sin, because this person is not doing what YOU did to get where you are at, or because God just doesn’t do that (according to You!) You are causing “Death by Criticisim” and you don’t even know what you are talking about. You are not God! You don’t KNOW what he will do or not do. Capiche?

                                  These Crow-like ways are NOT the nature of God! 

Faith is fragile when it first starts out. It’s like a tender young plant, and the seed of faith is growing into this beautiful & young (sapling, tree) and if someone comes along and “mows it down” with their words of Unbelief, jealousy, or anything else not of God, it’s like the crow who stole the seed in Matthew 13.

So (Christian) your job is to Protect the seed. Watch over it, guard it, and chase off the crows!

 The seeds of God are far more precious than any seed upon this earth! You need that garden of God’s word to live on! Don’t allow the devil to “kill your dreams” through others that don’t agree with you.

IF you are not all the way perfect, or right with God yet (in every area of your life), welcome to the club (of humanity). HE will show you what to do and when!  Find out for yourself what the Word of God says about his heart toward mankind! Find out for yourself! Ask him! Today!! Today is a great day to get started!

“Father today I ask you if this person reading has been stolen from by those who are like crows, I pray you would restore and re-assure them about their Faith, and allow them to see and know that Faith pleases you, it honors you, and those seeds of Faith in your word that have been planted “Must Remain” and be cultivated and watered. I pray for great crops in their lives today Father! and a Very great Outcome (and more testimonies of you!) In Jesus’ name! amen!” 

With Love and assurance God is for you, not against you!

Laura Grace, Author, (Grace to Grow) And an advocate for his Mercy (and grace).

 

Scripture Ref: James 5, Proverbs 26 Matthew 13 & 2nd Cor NKJV

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In the Nick of time……(testimony time!)

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I hope this encourages someone today. Through the years of hearing many sermons, I remember a preacher saying once “if you prayed in faith it will happen” but if you start falling apart you’ll be embarassed, when God comes through! I remember another pastor saying “God’s paydays aren’t always on Friday.” He was talking about God being our “Paymaster”

When God asks or directs me to do something I believe he will provide for it. I entered school last year being led of God to do this. I applied for pell grants and I attend a school that gives a military discount (since I’m a veteran).

Everything was all in place, and i’ve been so thankful for how things have worked out and how God has provided in various ways to make up for the fact that I”m not working much such as 100.00 showing up in the mail just when I needed it or someone taking me to lunch or someone else gave me fruits and veggies…..Just a lot of neat things have happened!

I’ve had to believe for the time to do school and the mental stamina to stick to it through thick thin and turbulence.

God has given me the strength WHEN I have faith for it! Not whine for it but have FAITH for it “Thank you Father” You will help me get this done today” How do i know he will? I have read his promises and planted them in my heart!

Everything with God is by Faith in receiving a promise he made in his word. It’s a fight! So now today I found out an audit done with financial aide caused a “balance due” From last Fall! (about 260.00) what a not so nice shock! But guess what? Some loving people gave me 250.00 toward school amd it came ‘in the nick of time” ……

Just sharing! I’m glad I didn’t faint! I have said, “Thank you that you will provide” as I ride this rollar coaster ride! God is always on time! Just have Faith that he is with you! He loves you! And where God guides, he provides! if you find out you were in yourself and not guided by him he will still rescue you! Isn’t he good? YES HE Is! with love in my heart for you all…

Laura Grace, Author “grace to the rescue’ and the story goes on!

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onward Christian Soldiers…..marching as to war…..with the cross of Jesus…

chrisitan flag

Onward Christian soldiers….(by Laura Grace) under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, I say this: This is a war! And we must believe we will win! Whenever I see films about war, I think of Christian soldiers. We get shot at (by the devil and his minions) every bad thing the devil the father of lies is behind it.

We nullify him with our faith! Our battle is not against flesh and blood EVEN THO we may see the enemies ways manifesting in people sometimes. Sickness is not of God he wants it gone.

GOD does not want you sick! Yes I have stood up to it too and seen it get worse. That’s no excuse! Sickness you have to leave! The Lame “be made whole” speak to that problem in the name of Jesus Christ. SHOOT it like a gun! use your weapons God gave you! “SHOOT” (in the Spirit) those words out of your mouth!

There is power in the name of Jesus! Power in the words you say!

I have accepted I live in a fleshly body full of unbelief. I have to overcome my mind, which has also had bad seeds planted at times, that are not of God. The Battle field for the mind is a real thing. satan sends flaming darts of unbelief at us to tell us we won’t make it. We have PTSD (he says) “we have too much trauma” so we have a right to give up give in or just wave the white flag.

My mind and body gets weak at times but with my MOUTH I can still speak words of Faith. OH Father! Let words of Faith be on my lips always! amen

Soldiers who fought often kept fighting for their commrades. they wanted to give up! their feet were cold and they thought they might go crazy from the continual sounds of war. They were traumatized when their friends were blown to pieces.

WW2 Victims were just as traumatized but they didn’t get meds for PTSD. I’m sure many of them had it. The Victors over it had to have faith.

WE can’t AFFORD TO GIVE UP! Don’t let “Give up” be part of your vocabulary! We are in this to win and we can make it Friends! We Can…….use your strength to declare victory!

WE ARE Going to Win! God is with us! We must go forward no matter what we’ve seen (like soldiers) we are fighting for a greater cause then just ourselves. The world needs to see your example and your Brothers and Sisters in christ need your prayers! We have the victory! never surrender! We will not be deafeated. With Love (preaching to myself too here)

your companion in the battle and a soldier of Jesus Christ, 

 

Laura Grace 

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Traditions: Don’t get stuck (in them)

All the kids 2016
My Family……(some of them) daughter Carolee and family not pictured 

I”m going to tell you something right now that I have FIRST received for myself (through hard correction by the Spirit of God!)

A lot of traditions we have and hold dear, or “ways of doing things” are just that: “Things we hold dear.” When we get too stodgy or stuck on OUR WAY Of doing things, we leave little room for the Holy Spirit to move. When we gather with family how about saying “what do you want, Holy Spirit? Or “Jesus do your will in my family today……..”

Or “What is your will in my church today?” “do you want to do a new thing? Help me NOT TO GET IN YOUR WAY” (amen!)

I recently let go of a “tradition” it was very hard for me- but, it turned out good! (I let the Lord have his way!!)

I thought because I’ve been serving God for over 30 years, am filled with the Spirit have read the bible 7 or 8 times wrote books, sat at bible studies for years “I KNEW” certain things! 

But let me tell you something, we don’t KNOW what the Lord wants to do next unless we ask him! We need to stay fresh (who likes old bread?) We need FRESH Bread! FRESH anointing!

FRESH Ideas too! The generation coming up needs the gospel to be spoken to them in a language they can understand. i want you to remember something (And God showed me this too)

We who are over 50 are now “the older people’ that used to get on our cases when we were in our 20’s. Whatever traditions they had some were not so important to us. We need to remember our younger generation has ideas too…….

And some of them are very Good ideas! bless them! Set them free to work for Jesus and for the future that lies ahead…the patriarchs of old layed hands on their kids ‘and blessed them”

amen ..

Laura Grace

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Broken Noodles…….(a teaching about sacred cows, and how we do stuff)

spaghetti casserole

My husband informed me the other day, he doesn’t like it when I make spaghetti casserole. He said my spaghetti is good, he loves it but the breaking of the noodles just ruins it for him somehow. I love Spaghetti Casserole! This caused a big dilemna, because most of the time i do things “his way” but not this day. 

Don’t we all have a preference on how we do things? Some of us do, some of us don’t! In terms of spiritual food, some like teachings on discipline, some do not. Healthy food like Broccoli, Asparagus, whole grains, fruit, (and the list goes on) are not the cup of tea for some, but they are necessary to a healthy body. If you don’t like one, try to find one you do like (Fruits, Vegetables, all of it). 

It’s sad to me, that a lot of medical professionals have given up on counselling people to eat healthy. They know they won’t, so they just prescribe a drug (instead) hoping to keep them alive and going. Sometimes it’s the same in Christianity. We know people do not want to HEAR certain teachings so we pray and hope they’ll be okay. 

However, Most of us who’ve been studying the Word (of God) for very long, know that some things are necessary in order for a person to grow, stay healthy and even thrive as a Christian. 

I was pretty upset with my husband (I must admit) because I usually do things “his way” but in this case, spaghetti casserole was the way to go, in order to be efficient. I only had so much time to cook this food, and I am juggling a lot of responsibilities right now. I found myself (as a servant) Torn between should I have done it his way? Or not? 🙂 It’s a silly fight we had (and yes, it was almost a fight!!!). 

I have no idea why, but it’s human nature we get used to something (being a certain way) and in his case it sounded so understandable “Well I like your spaghetti the way it was.” 

HMM how many things are we like this about church? “I liked the songs we sang before” or “I liked the way that other pastor did it” Or “I just like it when we don’t have so long of a prayer time, or that long of a sermon, or this, or that (or the other thing). This is the sort of “striving” Romans 1 and 1 Timothy 6 mention the wrong kind of striving, while Phillippians 1:27 tells us what we SHOULD be striving for in the Body of Christ. 

We should be striving to have FAITH together (and stand strong, as one!) Instead of striving over what our little preferences are in terms of “FOOD” and how it’s prepared. 

Food is food! We need it to live! (spiritually and in the body). 

My husband’s a good guy, and I do love him dearly. He believes in being in the light and not mincing words about things. Therefore, when I said ‘I just wanted you to say THANK YOU” and eat it! “I make lots of food the way you wish me to, this time, I did not.”

And he did understand that, but see, I had the problem! I was worrying about whether or not I was being a great servant (or not) instead of resting in confidence over my decision to make “Spaghetti Casserole.” IN CHURCH we have got to be careful as we listen to teachings about “being a good servant” or even “being a good wife’ Or “being a great Pastor” and remember that THERE IS BALANCE In all things.

Don’t allow a teaching to become a sacred cow in your life. It’s good to learn about things,  but the moment we make it into a Sacred Cow (This is how we always Must do things!!!) Then it’s on it’s way to becoming a doctrine of men (and not the Gospel of Jesus Christ!!). Be careful! Staying on course is good, unnecessary dogma is NOT good! 

Why? Because we need the freedom to Move and BE and Walk by the Spirit of God! He will show us how to get something done “in a pinch” but if we get all stoic and stuck in how we do things, we may end up just that: Stuck! Not going forward! Refusing to eat because we decided we do not “Like something’ to be done that way. 

 

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Building #10 The Measure of Spiritual Maturity. What does it mean to be “Grown Up” In Christ? And how do we know if we are (and if others are?)

GROWING TREE ROOTS I don’t know about you, but I’d like to have a grown-up for my leader. Many people aspire to be leaders, coaches, teachers, and the like; but they are not always qualified. 

I said, they are not always qualified. 

How do we know if they’re qualified? What do you think would be “God’s measure” of maturity? have you ever thought about that one? (I have). 

We’ve all heard the stories of how someone wasn’t “picked” for the team. I was one that nobody wanted on their baseball, football, or even volley ball team! I was not good at it. I didn’t want to be good at it (bad enough) to practice.

I let go of even trying long ago, because guess what? I didn’t care! (about sports) enough to put my heart into learning, practicing, and becoming great at it. 

I did, at some point, need to stop whining and admit to myselfI don’t want this bad enough to do the hard work.” Step #1 to Growing and Maturity: Admitting the truth about ourselves in the light of God’s Truth! 

I’m sure out there “somewhere” there are ministries that choose their leaders by their maturity level in-Christ, but I don’t think there is many. Sad to say, the mainstream church world often makes their selections based on willingness, an outward appearance of maturity, faithfulness to church services, and attending bible school and colleges. The main goal is often raking in more bodies (to fill the pews) and not growth and maturity for the ones who are in those pews. 

They have board members who look at the resume’, pray about it, and make their choice as to what they think is the best candidate for the (open slot) or job.

So, if you were picking a leader, or a pastor (of a church) what would be your measure for maturity? 

I make that decision every day of my life, when I decide who I will listen to and who I will not (listen to). Ephesians 4 says God gave us Apostles, Evangelists, Prophets and Teachers to help us come to maturity (in Christ). 

I learned a long time ago, a person who is blind will lead me into the ditch. A person who is not mature will not help me get mature. I want a leader who is stronger, wiser and more mature than I am. 

Therefore, if I do not listen to someone’s advice, it doesn’t mean I am rejecting them, personally. I simply learned (a long time ago) That listening to Jesus comes first. To put anyone’s council above His, is a form of idolatry. 

Am I perfect? No! Have I made mistakes? Yes, I have. But my heart and mind are set on the words “Take my yoke upon you” (Words of Jesus) “and be yoked to me.” (Matthew 11:28). 

The Lord is my Shepherd (primarily) and everything else is subject to him. 

Years ago I sat under a minister for a time (online) and hardly anyone understood why. It was because of his Testimony.  A testimony (for me) is the true measure of maturity. Not what school they went to, not how many days they warmed a pew in the church. 

I”ve met many who attended church for 30 years, and like a submarine, nothing seemed to really get INTO their hearts. They are no different today than they were 30 years ago, other than knowing how to speak christianese. 

Like a tree, a testimony is a measure of how much work God has actually done in a person’s life. Are they born again? Filled with God’s spirit? Have they walked in the fruits of the spirit and learned to walk by the spirit of God? Have they cried out for, and received wisdom (from above) and not relied on the wisdom of man (and his ways?). Are they tried and true? 

It’s out of balance to say we don’t need anyone but God and it’s out of whack to say we only need church, and just follow along with whatever supposed “leader” comes our way. It’s unhealthy to gather around someone who just “says what we want to hear” and it’s foolish to assume every person in a leadership position was put there by God. If that were the case, Paul and Jesus would not have wept over flocks being deceived by wolves in sheeps’ clothing and they would not have interceded with tears over those being “led astray.”

Did you know Jesus cried (and wept) for those that would not listen to him? That was more serious to him than starving children or the physical suffering of humanity. Why? 

Because: He knew if he could successfully save the human soul (and we would listen to him) all the rest would be taken care of. God’s wisdom leads to us being “alright” in the Spirit first, and then in the natural. He wants us healthy (Spirit, Mind, and Body!). He wants us mature, which means we have grown up INTO his Headship.

I would dare say this means “We’ve God the mind of Christ” in all things. 

To get the mind of Christ, we have to continually give up our own ways of thinking. We have to push out the voices of the immature, the unsteady, and the godless and faithless, and INCLINE Our ear to the word of God via His Spirit. 

So here’s my standard on whether I will listen to you (or not). What is your Testimony? If you don’t have one to overcome with, how can I follow you? 

“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death.” (Revelation 12:11 NKJV). 

In conclusion, if you have found a church that truly has a loving, parental heart to see you Grow (UP) IN Christ, stick to them like glue! If you can see they love you, and want you to grow, stay put! If they have other agenda’s, face it and pray, and ask God for a church that helps you get where you need to be. This is my advice, and I believe it is sound. LOVE yourself enough to get good spiritual food. 

Put your Spirit and Soul First, and the rest of you (body) as secondary. This is what it means to love not (your physical life) Unto Death. You put it under, and put it second to your growth and development in Christ. Enough said! -Laura Grace 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My Stance on V day (now-a-days) is different ……….

 I know I know this seems like a terrible thing to say on Valentine’s day! But for those who do not get Valentine’s please listen! I used to be like this little whiney kid about V day and not getting hearts and flowers or necklaces or cards or whatever else from my Husband. He turns over his whole paycheck to see the bills paid and things taken care of.

I Pled my case with him a few years ago about how little girls dream of their sweet baboo giving them valentines’ and chocolates and how Television tells us all “That’s proof we are loved’ (if we get V day stuf!). 

Somewhere in the middle of my tearful speech trying to make him feel bad, I realized i (who says I’m a Christian and not of this world) was trying to MAKE him follow the ways of this world. I was wrong and God is right! 😮

He just got up and went to work again, Faithfully demonstrating his love as he does day after day.

Honestly I cannot bring myself to be upset anymore even if I tried. Deep down I know Getting a valentine or not is not proof I am loved one way or another.

Love is faithfulness, committment and daily decisions and I just can’t bring myself to cry like a small child anymore over how my husband didn’t let the ads on TV send him into a guilt filled frenzy to get me cards and flowers.

 And I mean this! with all of my heart! I think it’s sweet we have a holiday decicated to love but I gotta keep it in perspective. 🙂 I’m really thankful there is not a “every-wife-has-to help-fix-the-car” Holiday! and what If I came home and found him in a pile of tears because I didn’t? 😮😝

V DAY FUNNY