You Have Decisions To Make 

James 1:19-25

“Know this, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger: for the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God. Therefore, putting aside all filthiness and all that remains of wickedness, in humility receive the word implanted, which is able to save your souls. Keep being obedient to the word, and not merely being hearers who deceive themselves. For if anyone hears the word but is not obedient to it, he is like a man who looks at himself in a mirror and studies himself carefully, and then goes off and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the one who looks at the perfect law of freedom and remains committed to it—thereby demonstrating that he is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of what that law requires—will be blessed in what he does.”

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Flexibility 

Today, I’d like to share with you something my husband wrote. I quite enjoyed it and hope you will too 😊

“I am here for a purpose and that purpose is to grow into a mountain, not to shrink to a grain of sand. Henceforth I will apply ALL my efforts to become the highest mountain of all and I will strain my potential until it cries for mercy.” – Og Mandino

“Do all things without grumbling or disputing;  so that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world,”

Be a mountain and a light. One to stand tall like a mountain, not shrinking back. The other trying to get people to do things as well as possible in order to be a light. I think if anyone takes a humble attitude, applies ones self, and just puts forth their best at all times, keeping righteousness in mind, you will be that light. If my mind is always on doing my best, even my worst stands to be better. Working harder, training harder, keeping my anger in check, and being open to reproof. Something good will always come through. Getting my point across in an argument may not always apply. Sometimes it has to wait. Sometimes being the guy who cleans the bathroom, even though you’re trained for something greater, is something you need to do. Later, when your word is needed, or your special skills can put together something others know little of, it will be your time to shine even brighter. I really believe that very soon all our knowledge and skills will be in need. Living in a time where good and bad are getting twisted. Right and wrong is always up for a vote. And always getting twisted. Standards are being set by the few who have lowered the morals of the nation. There will be a time where it will come to a head. Right will finally confront all the wrongs. And win.

Separation of Church and State

When I see the statement, “If we’re going to save our children, we have to put God back into the equation”, it occurs to me that spiritual guidance and growth begins at home.

Proverbs 22:6 says,

“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

In my humble opinion, each person has the right to make their own choice when it comes to religious beliefs. If, for example, a person does not believe in God that’s their prerogative, but they have no right to force their status as a non-believer upon me or anyone else. Nor do they have the right to condemn me for being a believer.

Alternately, as a believer, I would never seek to force my beliefs upon another, however I do expect to be allowed to worship in peace and to raise my children with my belief system. The problem with this country, is that there’s this idea going around that we all must conform to one way or another, and there is no happy medium.

God is not a forceful God. He allows each of us to choose whether or not to believe in Him. Do I think the world would benefit from having more people worshiping God? Yes. That said, if anyone chooses to believe and worship then they should be left in peace to do so in their own way. “Separation of church and state” has nothing to do with it.”

Watch Your Mouth…

dailyHello Family and Friends! Happy Tuesday! Today, I’m impressed to remind you that what you say, will directly affect what you believe and the effects can be either positive or negative, depending on what you’re saying. If you’re constantly speaking negatives, then your words will get into your spirit and act as a poison that will take over and begin to cause spiritual death. If you are speaking positives, you are speaking healing into your spirit, and positive things will begin to happen. Proverbs 18:21 says, “The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences
The same is true of how you speak to others. Ephesians 4:29 says, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”We need to build each other up, so we can rise to be better than we are or were. If we constantly tear each other down, by speaking words against one another that are unkind, or destructive, then we are quite literally poisoning the spirit of another person, and honestly, we have no right to do that to another of God’s creation.
This is actually SO important that God put it in the bible several times. Here are a few examples. It all boils down to this: If you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all. Proverbs 21:23 says,
“He who guards his mouth and his tongue, Guards his soul from troubles.”
As always, I pray this message is a blessing to you, in Jesus’ name – Amen.
Rev. Crystal

Greater is He….

worldWe live in troubled times. You don’t even need TV or newspapers to see it. If you have a Facebook account and friends, you can see that something isn’t quite right. Here’s the scenario: You wake up in the morning, make your cup of coffee, reach for your Smartphone and start scrolling through Facebook, just to see what’s going on with family and friends. But what do you really see? Images of social violence, political scandal, domestic abuse, and physical harm to unborn babies and overly vulgar “jokes.” In other words, rude, crude, and often explicit images that most people wouldn’t expect to see over morning coffee.
Here’s the thing – I am not in anyway, a prude. I have a sense of humor, and I have trouble sometimes controlling my own attitude and my mouth. But I’m trying. That said, I have also noticed something else… There is not one single person who is completely happy with the world we live in. Everyone I see expresses the idea that this world we live in is “going to hell”, and that’s because they’re right.
Ephesians 6:12 says, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”
What’s the reason? A lack of God. Not because He’s abandoned or forsaken us, but because we’ve abandoned and forsaken Him! We, as a people, put our wants and desires first and foremost before and above the creator of the universe. The one being in existence who created everything and all of us, and we exclude Him from our lives on a regular, daily basis. We’re all guilty of it to some degree. All of us. There are many people who know He’s real and yet refuse to acknowledge Him in any way or worse, completely deny His existence. This way of life has tragic results. On the other hand, when we give our lives to the Lord, He says, “I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh” (Ezk 36:26)
Let me ask you something… do you ever feel like there’s something missing in your life, but you just can’t put your finger on it? That’s God. He’s trying to get your attention. Ever feel like you need someone or something to comfort you? That’s God telling you He wants to give you His perfect love, and asks that you love Him in return. He’s polite though. He’s not going to barge in and take over your life. You have to want Him there. You have to invite Him in. But what do we do? We turn to material things, or even short-term relationships with people who we KNOW aren’t good for us, in an effort to fill that void in our lives. That’s what the world does to us. It leaves us empty, angry, and hurting.
Romans 12:2: “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
John 3:16 “ For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

1 John 4:4 – “ You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.”

All you have to do is invite Jesus into your heart, and the rest will follow. I’m not saying you’ll never struggle again, I’m saying you’ll never be alone again. And you’ll have the creator of the universe and all things in it to help you. And He will help you!
If this message has been a blessing to you. I ask that you please “like” and “share” it. I ask nothing in return. I just want to know that what God is giving me, is making it out there for his glory, and the enrichment of your spirit – In Jesus’ name, amen!
Rev. Crystal Bennett

The Power of the Tongue

This is not my post, but was written by a friend of mine, and I can relate to it just as much as anyone else may be able to. I really feel strongly that the Lord wants me to share it, so I am.  May it be as big a blessing to you as it is to me 😊

“James 3:8-10… it’s amazing how in just one breath we can build up others or break them down. How do we change what comes out of our mouths when the world we live in thrives on breaking others down with their words. It’s become more and more acceptable to voice your opinion (because ur entitled to it) whether it hurts, embarrass others, or breaks others down you can say it. I have done this to others too many times, I pray daily that God will give me the desire to follow his Word and not the world”

Blessings In Disguise 

Some of you already knows I’m a writer at heart, and am working on writing a book. It’s been an ongoing process for several years. Hey, don’t laugh! It took J.K. Rowling six years to write Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone, which of course became Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. Personally, I like the original title better, but that’s just me. Anyway…. some time ago, I’d been praying for the time to write my book, because being a wife and mom who has a full time job and is also a full time student, was just sucking all my free time up, leaving no time or energy for writing. I also knew even then that I had a call to share the goodness of God with people, I just wasn’t sure how exactly.

Well it just occurred to me, that my prayers have been answered in the most odd way I could have imagined. Because of an ankle injury, I’ve been off work for several months now, and though I’m continuing my pursuit of a college degree, I’ve also had the time I need to work on my book.

It’s been a really tough situation without my regular pay check, and being denied for Workers Compensation. There have been interviews with investigators, depositions with lawyers, a multitude of medical examinations and procedures. And the pain involved with this type of injury is absolutely debilitating. It’s been a very rough road.

There have been days when we had no food in the house at all, but suddenly family or friends would just bring us food or send money to grocery shop, or pay rent or utility bills to restore services that had been disconnected. Amazing things keep happening and things are working out. One blessing is that this fellowship has come to life and I’m so blessed to be able to share things with you what the Lord has given me to write. I’m so grateful to the Lord for His grace and mercy, in taking care of me and my family during this difficult time.

One lesson I’ve learned here is that you need to be very specific when praying for something! Now, I’m not saying God caused the injury at all. BUT…. He can USE it as an opportunity for the fulfillment of my prayers. He’s pretty cool like that!

You may remember the story of Joseph in the bible. His brothers were terribly jealous of him because of how much his father loved and favored him, so they plotted to kill him. One brother didn’t want to go through with it, and talked his brothers into leaving Joseph in a pit instead. Still not great, but at least not dead, so there was still an opportunity for something good to happen. And it did!

After what seemed like a hopeless situation to Joseph for years, he was suddenly elevated to what would otherwise be impossible levels and actually saved the lives of many, many people by doing what God told him to do! His faith in God combined with his obedience to God, caused him to go from being abandoned in a pit to being the kinds right hand man in charge of the kingdom itself, thereby using his God given skills to save a multitude of people from the devastation of severe drought and famine that lasted seven long years!

When Joseph was finally reunited with his family, he had a rough time, but forgave them, saying, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. So then, don’t be afraid. I will provide for you and your children.” Genesis50:20-21.

God is good, is he not?! All the time!!!

So if you find yourself in an uncomfortable situation, think about the possible reasons, and allow God to use it for good. You may just be amazed at how much you will be blessed in the long run!

As always, I pray this today’s message is a blessing to you! In Jesus’ name, amen!

Rev. Crystal Bennett