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Relationships Series #5 Control part 2 “The behavior police’ (Galatians 3)

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Relationships #5 Control (Part 2). The Behavior Police
 
They’re out there. “The behavior Police.” You just got saved or you decided to renew your relationship with Jesus, he’s loving on you, and you’re all on fire for him. You’re in love with him! You have returned to your first love. I am happy to report I am in love with my saviour again (Jesus) and I have no intention of letting anyone rip me from his arms, ever again.
 
There was a time (I well remember) when I was not ready for the stuff that happened in church. I thought it was always a safe place, a happy place, full of people who love Jesus.
 
Not always so. (Not always). sometimes there are people in there who just GO to the building and don’t KNOW Jesus (see 1 John) and on FB there are people like that also. they think they know him, but they don’t. If they DID they would not get in the face of one in love with Jesus with their pointy little finger, scolding you, telling you how you better SHAPE UP and do things right!
 
We don’t need to be scolded by those who are NOT our parents. One household runs different from another. It’s the same with God’s people. God has a plan for EACH Person and unless YOU Heard from the Holy Spirit you don’t Know God’s plan for Them!
 
Maybe they aren’t called to make the cookies for the funeral dinner. Maybe God led them to lead someone to Christ last Sunday instead of going to church. Maybe they are tired and God told them to rest. They belong to Jesus! (Not to you!).
 
What did Jesus say to Peter “Feed my lambs” HIS Lambs not YOUR lambs….!! Hmm…and they know HiS Voice! and should be encouraged that they know his voice! Not told to sit and be still in your little military school! 😐
 
We are not in a man-made religious army here. We are grafted in by Faith, receiving from the life giving vine (Jesus). Have you ever looked how a plant operates? Dead stuff is pinched off and new life streams into the new leaves that are growing. 🌱🌳
 
Soon the plant blossoms as it stretches toward the sun. All it needs is water, light, good soil to grow in, and everything must be attached to the vine. We don’t walk up to plants and “Scold them” into submission! We should look for ways to encourage others to stay in the vine and keep on growing (IN Christ Jesus).
 
I want so share a large segment of Galatians. It’s worth reading again and again. A reminder to stand firm in the Faith that first brought you to Jesus (and not be dismayed by the Behavior Police). Laura Grace
 
Galatians 3
 
O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you that you should not obey the truth,[a] before whose eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed among you as crucified? 2 This only I want to learn from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? 3 Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now being made perfect by the flesh? 4 Have you suffered so many things in vain—if indeed it was in vain?
 
5 Therefore He who supplies the Spirit to you and works miracles among you, does He do it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?— 6 just as Abraham “believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness. 7 Therefore know that only those who are of faith are sons of Abraham. 8 And the Scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel to Abraham beforehand, saying, “In you all the nations shall be blessed.”[d] 9 So then those who are of faith are blessed with believing Abraham.
 
The Law Brings a Curse
 
10 For as many as are of the works of the law are under the curse; for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who does not continue in all things which are written in the book of the law, to do them.”11 But that no one is justified by the law in the sight of God is evident, for “the just shall live by faith.” 12 Yet the law is not of faith, but “the man who does them shall live by them.”
 
13 Christ has redeemed us from the curse of the law, having become a curse for us (for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree”, 14 that the blessing of Abraham might come upon the Gentiles in Christ Jesus, that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.”
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Relationships, No More Drama, not even for your Mama! #4 Assumptions …..

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Who I DON”T want to be (and how I found out). by Laura Grace

I’m going to write this before I change my mind! I felt the Lord tugging at my heart to share about relationships a number of times….and I knew it would mean confessing mistakes I have made……….

So Years ago my husband tells me “his ex” used to buy a lot of food and not use it. I heard that, made a note of it, and make every attempt Not to be that way. Years go by, one day he notices I threw something out without using it and makes a comment “Did that go bad already, we didn’t even use it?” ….

Instantly (because I’m tired and had a hard day) I assume he is saying I’m like his ex. “That fast!” Hair trigger moment. “I’ve been busy!!” I snap- (and start listing what I had to do all day BECAUSE I assume he needs to know (because he doesn’t keep track of all my jobs, only what food is being tossed out!) “Okay Okay” He said it was just an observation I wasn’t attacking you!” (and looks all disgusted like I am a hila monster on fire!) I react to THAT next it goes into my mind “Gee wiz can’t I have a bad day?”

Now I’m bent! (and don’t even know why!) And see, all this happened so fast it’s like- “100 miles an hour” and the next thing you know, two people that were supposed to be relaxing in the harbor of their home are thinking “good grief, what’s wrong with YOU?” “NO, what’s wrong with you?” …….

Now, it’s been worse (in times past). I thought he should water flowers at this one place we lived (as I was tired, had done it all the time, and they needed watering. He decided to make “gardeners’ last stand” and say he didn’t want flowers in the first place! I was all indignant, he got a list of all the stuff I didn’t want to do that I  did…….and that’s why he should do it when I ask with no back talk! (Yeah I know, WOW) …but the thing is….

You can be a praying person, full of the spirit. LOVE GOD and love others- and STILL wind up like this! One is from being too tired, or not taking the time to just count to 10, think about what you are going to say next…….in this case, he has the right to say “I am not into flowers” and I have the right to say “I am not” Into whatever it is he wants me to do (change the oil maybe?) 😄

But the other thing we have to watch out for is this:  “assumptions’ like how I assumed he was comparing me to his ex? (Lickety split, it just happened) If we say well “sorry” and don’t pray on our ways….. we keep messing up (over and over again) Destroying the relationship we so cherished. If we say “Okay God, I need help with this JUMPING TO CONCLUSIONS Problem” then …….

The  bible says “confess your faults’ and pray (for one another) AND you’ll be healed! It doesn’t say “point out their faults and assume it’s all them because hey YOU are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus!” 
(and you can never be wrong? oh oh! )………

I know this is a long post. Maybe YOU are never like this but, we all have our flaws.🙂 (weak areas?) …..and it’s the little things sometimes. I hope my confession (one of many days I was OFF In my thinking for one reason or another) Will help you Remember to ASK “What did you mean by that?” When dealing with someone stop! ASK “What are you saying, can you clarify?” ….

Pretend you HAVE To be professional! It’s too easy to take someone we love for granted, & think things like “You should know me by now” (another assumption)

Helps you see yes ….we are all human! But let’s try to do better! And here’s the thing DO things in such a way you actually like yourself! There’s a story Jesus told, the master took a long time returning and this person began to “beat the servants” 😯and how much trouble he got in when the master came home! Let’s not be doing things wrong just because we think nobody sees us….

God sees everything! He is your Father! and he’s watching you! every day! Well I hope this helped someone ..

WIth Love And a prayer: “Father anyone out there who is just struggling with feeling things are unfair, hopeless, impossible! I Pray that You would help that person start with themselves! And learn to learn of you Father! NO matter what! In Jesus’ name help us all remember two wrongs do not make things right. Help us not to give up on our own integrity just becuase we’re having a bad day. Helpl us Father to love ourselves enough to get some rest or take a time out …….In Jesus’ name we pray. amen

Laura Grace

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The second mile…..according to Jesus…

a ROAD Matthew 5: 41 “And whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two. ” 

Right after Jesus sat on the mount (speaking to the multitudes) He continued to speak about other topics. One was this passage- (above) which came to mind this morning as I was pondering and waking up. 

You see, I have dreams in my heart, which I believe God placed there. Dreams of travelling, speaking, sharing all the treasures he has bestowed within me. Dreams of sharing with others (who are hurting) all the beautiful testimonies God has given me of redemption, healing, restoration, and reasons for praise! 

I have boldly declared “I will go” (travel and speak) but I seem to be ahead of my time in most everything I do. In Other words, Sometimes a vision is so real to me, I think it’s going ot happen tomorrow! I just want you to know everything I”ve ever said is going ot happen HAS happened. But not in the year or day I thought it would happen. 

I was asked to help with music in my local church about three years ago, starting with the children in an after school program. That led to more singing (in the church) and later on, a semester of teaching music at the local school (grades K to 12) and this was without a teaching certificate by the way. AMAZING!

I can’t tell you how much it blesses my heart that even recently, I sang at church (a song God put on my heart to sing with guitar) and a local person chased me down the other day saying: “I forgot to tell you, that song was so great, please do that more often!!”. It’s 2017 now. Twenty years ago I was crying and asking God WHY He would not use me in church to sing. I had learned almost every song on guitar that church did at the time. EVERY SONG …It took hours to learn them all….hours and hours and hours of time……

I prayed “Thank you Father that if I am faithful you will TRUST ME to sing and minister to your people” …..(as I learned all these songs, and practiced them over and over) And I have to tell you….I had given up on the whole thing, a few years ago.

Oh sure- I sang at this one place but for the most part I’d “thrown in the towel” Given up…..said Okay Father what’s next I surrender! Obviously I”m NOT called to sing or do music in my local church! 

Now I’m in school (full time) Pursuing a degree at a christian college, I’ve written books, I’ve made brochures…..I’ve gone on some speaking engagements…..and I’ve done a mission trip this past summer in my local region. The pastor of the church I attend now is telling me “this other church” wants you to come and sing………” 

             I wanted to keep writing books…bag the singing…..Give up on it now…

 BEING REAL HERE! See it hurts to be disappointed, and if we don’t allow God to keep working in our hearts….we may just slam the door on him! 

Well? Do I go the second mile? Or do I just say “I have other plans now, Lord!”. I asked him to open doors! I asked him to use me! (for his Glory)….who am I to decide what I should or should not do? Who am I to say “this life is MINE I will do what I WISH to do?” …….hmm …..and when I asked him “Should I be singing or should I be writing books?” He gave me that passage (Matthew 5:41) “Someone is asking you girl!! What’s the problem?” ……Incidentally I CAN Do both if I trim some corners. 

So “Father I trust your timing! I don’t understand it, always, but I trust in you! I know whatever visions you have given me that you’ve put in my heart….will come to pass. Eventually ….they will! and please Forgive me for giving up all those years ago…….because I thought you were not quick enough to answer my prayers.” and Father thank you that when something in your word Is true FOR US you will cause it to leap off the page at us! Just like this one you gave me today! It’s for me Father! and I praise you for this! IN Jesus’ name. amen ……..Laura Grace, Author, Grace to Grow the Study guide (a self contained book With studies) Available on Amazon. 

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This picture is me Christmas Concert 2016 directing the music program (Without a teaching certificate) but God was with me……..Laura Grace

 

 

 

 

 

 

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All lives matter……..

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My (deep) thoughts for today……”All lives matter”….We can pray for the families that lost loved ones in this shooting…..those who died in recent storms, hurricanes…..more that died locally in traffic accidents because someone crossed the center line….snuffing out their life in a moments’ time because of carelessness, recklessness……..

That’s all we can do is pray for comfort as we cannot bring them back. Every day I hear of those who have hidden problems ….problems nobody understands. Wierd things, things they are too ashamed to even speak of……and I understand that because I’ve had some of those (unspeakable) problems that virtually nobody but God would understand…..

Here’s one I heard of this among many “a minister” who was into sadism, made his wife do unspeakable things and tortured her…who was she supposed to tell? How could she get help without someone gasping in horror? (and adding to the problem with their own fears and horror about it? LIsten all we can do is pray and be ready to reach out to OUR corner of the world….

Each of us is ONE person…….we can only do so many things in a given day….but we can make the world a better place. ONE good decision at a time..do what you can for those around you……

WE have to and need to develop the Kingdom of God within us Giving people Jesus and a true knowledge of Him and not some religious view point is the best gift we can give anyone ….a TRUE Knowledge from his heart to your heart to their heart………….the real thing…………

In HIM is all things LIfe, Peace, Answers….HOPE ……Get Jesus in you so deep you have something to give. Establish yourself on the ROCK WIth HIM then you can pull others out of the torrid waters and pray for them in Faith. This is how we can be “the best we can be” for Jesus…….get established ..ON the Rock! Amen

Then ask him to send you where you can go…..and ask him to send you those you are equipped to help. Amen -Laura grace, author Grace to the rescue and Grace to Grow 

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God’s Grace

If I see one thing all through out the bible …it’s Grace. (God’s Grace) even before Jesus came people who cried out for mercy and grace received it. Cain who slew his brother got a degree of mercy (as he cried out for it) and there was Sampson the people of Ninevah whom Jonah said would be destroyed but they repented…..there was so many cases where someone even cried out to live after a prophet said they would die…. and God had Mercy on them…….

It’s evidence to me that God’s (heart) Never changes and never did change. He sent Jesus so we could KNOW him better. a Study of Jesus reveals the heart of the Father. Yes the Heart of the Father….It’s Mercy, and Grace ……


Not only what Jesus said but all the things he did!

But he does insist we come to him ….and, even when he knows people won’t stick with him he still blesses them anyway! Personally….I believe in covenant relationships with God (and if you can achieve it) with others as well.

this is a relationship like this “all I have is yours, all you have is mine” .

To me the bible is the most fascinating book in the universe! One you develop a taste for God’s word this “spiritual health food is all you are going to want. And by the way my school is done for the week and I am rejoicing! I took on a heavy load this year.

But God is with me! I got 90 percent on the last test. HURRAY

Laura Grace

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Con Artists & Church….Stuff nobody wants to talk about ……

It happens. If I were to tell you every story I have personally seen or heard where people fake being a christian, take advantage of the church (time and time again) with no remorse or repentance (or willingness to change) You’d be appalled.

I have been faced with a plethora of reactions when I say “Hey “There are con Artists” Watch out! Some say well You have to love ALL the time turn the other cheek……

“Well that’s not our business,” They say, “We just have to love, and be kind like Jesus said or did.” Really? He let the people sitting at his feet listening to him go hungry for three days (was it a fast?) He told a woman asking for healing for her daughter the children’s bread was not for dogs! There is no record of Jesus gathering his disciples together and saying “Come on boys, we’re going to hand out free meals today to everyone in the leper colony!”

I had a woman tell me (recently) that she tried to help someone (got burned) and after she’d helped this person ranted at her (she didn’t help enough apparently) and I have also experienced this myself.

When I was a property manager, I remember a couple who got the church to pay their deposit and rent, and moved in. They didn’t have a very good back ground check but hey, the church was helping, so we overlooked it in the interest of good will and charity. After all isn’t that what we are supposed to do? Love our neighbors? Jesus indicated brethren first and be wise (as serpents) but somehow that goes unheard by many as our examples of great humanitarians loom before us as “the great example” of how we should be.

This couple moved in, wrecked the place, made a mess that would make your hair curl, soiled carpet, ruined floors, stains, grease debris that cost the owner literally thousands to repair. They moved out owing two months rent, as it was never paid, and their promise to pay was not kept.

I’ve met people who say “Just go to the church for help,” there is a network of people who do this, and go from town to town, place to place, leaving damage, debris and sorrow in their wake. The people who get burned often feel God let them down somehow, or they just decide never to help anyone again and develop a ‘no trust” standard.

This is so sad (to me). Do we really need these extremes? Help everyone or help no one?

I know it’s hard to decide if someone is “worthy of help.” After all we do have the example of Jesus saying “Judge not” and there is this nugget:

“To him who strikes you on the one cheek, offer the other also. And from him who takes away your cloak, do not withhold your tunic either. ” Luke 6:29

But see you have to LOOK hard at the whole picture here. Verse And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise. Verse 31 of this same passage says:

“And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise.” 

Do you want God to just let you be a con artist? Hurting everyone as you go? Leaving a trail of destruction in your wake? Certainly the disciples were not like this. I want God’s correction don’t you? SO see the whole counsel of God is not to just let someone rape you financially and take all your goods over and over again. And sit and cry and say “God did this to me.” I was Just obeying his word!

I don’t have time to tell you all the passages about being wise (in proverbs) It saddens me that people who don’t study the bible allow leaders (who are setting some bad examples by the way) direct their paths, (instead of learning from the Holy spirit for themselves).

I too followed their examples at one time. I gave and gave and thought “Well God would reward me” and grieved the heart of God in the process. He wept for me. Every time he tried to bless me, I thought I had to give it all away. I allowed con artists to (literally) steal from me, thinking it was God’s will. If you are a person LIKE the disciples Jesus was talking to YOU WANT Corrected. Right? (if you are being a con artist?)

Don’t be afraid to call a spade a spade Or get discernment! You won’t be less in the Kingdom of God you’ll be MORE. More able to help those God wants to help…..

Less foolish and less fooled..Not deceived! Til next time; -Laura Grace

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Is the Gospel always good news? It is but not to all…..and here’s why……..

HAPPY SADI know we’ve all heard the saying “How beautiful are the feet of those, who bring good news.” (Isaiah 52:7) And even Jesus himself quoted Isaiah, letting everyone know he was the fullfillment of Isaiah’s prophecies, about a coming saviour, bringing Good News. 

To many of the Chief Priests and Pharisees, this was not good news. I was reading this morning how they yelled and screamed for him to be crucified. “He said he’s the Son of God” they said “Crucify Him!” (John 19:6). To the disciples who were told “Ye of Little Faith” by Jesus- (while in training) perhaps it didn’t always “Feel like” good news to them, either. Man always has an answer HE thinks is best, and God always has an answer. 

When the two do not agree, worlds collide.

We need to be aware of our choices, and what answer we are going to give creedence to.  I want to remember that those who stopped following Jesus, did not get anymore answers, or correction from God. He doesn’t throw his pearls out-for those who tend to trample on them. An idol is something that we give more creedence to than God and that CAN BE our circumstance, or problem sometimes. 

IN other words what is bigger to me? God, or my problem (the giant) I am facing? Jesus followers ask these hard questions. Those who don’t do not, and blame God for every single outcome (good or bad). So then, the gospel is always “Good News” but not to some. 

We (sometimes) try to bend it, twist it or even water it down to make it more palatable, but that is not wise. Oh Sure, God knows our hearts (I just wanted them to get it Lord!) 

But, we don’t need to “adjust” God’s word so that it “feels more” Like good news to those who won’t listen. We Don’t have to make it into Good News, It already is. The Good news is God is speaking (and has spoken) the question is: Are we listening to Him? Or something else? Incline your ear (toward him) Proverbs 2. If you care to…..

with love and prayers and blessing to you all 

Laura Grace