“In order to have a real relationship with God, you must first be real with yourself.”~TB
Our society has done a great job getting people to pretend to be something they are not. Many spend time chasing things and people that don’t actually align with who they are, what they value, and the list goes on. So, if you can’t even be real for your sake, how will you maintain a real relationship with God? He knows you, but do you know you?
God calls us for our own unique position and purpose. It takes certain characteristics and personalities to fill specific jobs. We are made according to our purpose. Of course, if I’m being you and you’re being me, how well can we fulfill our roles? Drop the act, stop being who you think you ought to be and be who God made you to be. It’s much easier than putting up a facade. More importantly, it’s how you grow deeper with your connection to Christ.
When you keep it real with God, the shame of what you ‘lack’ lessens because you know where to fill your cup. If you’re looking to the world to replenish your needs, you will always come up short and lacking. Knowing Christ’s identity and His purpose goes a long way in growing your maturity. When you’re young and dumb, the flashy glitter of the world is worth throwing away your authentic self for a pat on the back and a path to Hell. As you spiritually grow, you will value the realness of God and the unique qualities He has bestowed upon you.
Are you keeping it real or are you really faking it?
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1Isaiah son of Amoz received this message concerning the destruction of Babylon:
2“Raise a signal flag on a bare hilltop. Call up an army against Babylon. Wave your hand to encourage them as they march into the palaces of the high and mighty.
3I, the LORD, have dedicated these soldiers for this task. Yes, I have called mighty warriors to express my anger, and they will rejoice when I am exalted.”
4Hear the noise on the mountains! Listen, as the vast armies march! It is the noise and shouting of many nations. The LORD of Heaven’s Armies has called this army together.
5They come from distant countries, from beyond the farthest horizons. They are the LORD ’s weapons to carry out his anger. With them he will destroy the whole land.
6Scream in terror, for the day of the LORD has arrived— the time for the Almighty to destroy.
7Every arm is paralyzed with fear. Every heart melts,
8and people are terrified. Pangs of anguish grip them, like those of a woman in labor. They look helplessly at one another, their faces aflame with fear.
9For see, the day of the LORD is coming— the terrible day of his fury and fierce anger. The land will be made desolate, and all the sinners destroyed with it.
10The heavens will be black above them; the stars will give no light. The sun will be dark when it rises, and the moon will provide no light.
11“I, the LORD, will punish the world for its evil and the wicked for their sin. I will crush the arrogance of the proud and humble the pride of the mighty.
12I will make people scarcer than gold— more rare than the fine gold of Ophir.
13For I will shake the heavens. The earth will move from its place when the LORD of Heaven’s Armies displays his wrath in the day of his fierce anger.”
14Everyone in Babylon will run about like a hunted gazelle, like sheep without a shepherd. They will try to find their own people and flee to their own land.
15Anyone who is captured will be cut down— run through with a sword.
16Their little children will be dashed to death before their eyes. Their homes will be sacked, and their wives will be raped.
17“Look, I will stir up the Medes against Babylon. They cannot be tempted by silver or bribed with gold.
18The attacking armies will shoot down the young men with arrows. They will have no mercy on helpless babies and will show no compassion for children.”
19Babylon, the most glorious of kingdoms, the flower of Chaldean pride, will be devastated like Sodom and Gomorrah when God destroyed them.
20Babylon will never be inhabited again. It will remain empty for generation after generation. Nomads will refuse to camp there, and shepherds will not bed down their sheep.
21Desert animals will move into the ruined city, and the houses will be haunted by howling creatures. Owls will live among the ruins, and wild goats will go there to dance.
22Hyenas will howl in its fortresses, and jackals will make dens in its luxurious palaces. Babylon’s days are numbered; its time of destruction will soon arrive.
“We are all famous for what we do, be it for good or for evil, since God can see all of our thoughts and actions.” ~ Jon Barnes
You can’t hide your thoughts and actions because eventually you will display and do what is in your heart. God can see your heart and your pride. Since your heart and mind and the control systems of your life, people need to pray and ask God for guidance with life, humility, personal, and family development.
Pretending to work, help, love, give, and obey God’ s commandments is not how you honor God. Why would you want to be famous for acting like the devil? Making choices to please God is the wisest steps to take in life’s many decisions and personal steps of actions. The truth about you is known and will always shine through the mask of deception.
Your daily walk, work, actions, and love will always paint the correct picture of what you look and sound like to God. We all will see this picture easily because what we do and say will be the evidence of how God will judge us on that famous DAY!
Why do you believe and live out the lies of the wicked and ignore pursuing the truth in God’s loving instructions?
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Manasseh Rules in Judah
33 Manasseh was twelve years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem fifty-five years.2 He did what was evil in the Lord’s sight, following the detestable practices of the pagan nations that the Lord had driven from the land ahead of the Israelites.3 He rebuilt the pagan shrines his father, Hezekiah, had broken down. He constructed altars for the images of Baal and set up Asherah poles. He also bowed before all the powers of the heavens and worshiped them.
4 He built pagan altars in the Temple of the Lord, the place where the Lord had said, “My name will remain in Jerusalem forever.”5 He built these altars for all the powers of the heavens in both courtyards of the Lord’s Temple.6 Manasseh also sacrificed his own sons in the fire[a] in the valley of Ben-Hinnom. He practiced sorcery, divination, and witchcraft, and he consulted with mediums and psychics. He did much that was evil in the Lord’s sight, arousing his anger.
7 Manasseh even took a carved idol he had made and set it up in God’s Temple, the very place where God had told David and his son Solomon: “My name will be honored forever in this Temple and in Jerusalem—the city I have chosen from among all the tribes of Israel.8 If the Israelites will be careful to obey my commands—all the laws, decrees, and regulations given through Moses—I will not send them into exile from this land that I set aside for your ancestors.”9 But Manasseh led the people of Judah and Jerusalem to do even more evil than the pagan nations that the Lord had destroyed when the people of Israel entered the land.
10 The Lord spoke to Manasseh and his people, but they ignored all his warnings.11 So the Lord sent the commanders of the Assyrian armies, and they took Manasseh prisoner. They put a ring through his nose, bound him in bronze chains, and led him away to Babylon.12 But while in deep distress, Manasseh sought the Lord his God and sincerely humbled himself before the God of his ancestors.13 And when he prayed, the Lord listened to him and was moved by his request. So the Lord brought Manasseh back to Jerusalem and to his kingdom. Then Manasseh finally realized that the Lord alone is God!
14 After this Manasseh rebuilt the outer wall of the City of David, from west of the Gihon Spring in the Kidron Valley to the Fish Gate, and continuing around the hill of Ophel. He built the wall very high. And he stationed his military officers in all of the fortified towns of Judah.15 Manasseh also removed the foreign gods and the idol from the Lord’s Temple. He tore down all the altars he had built on the hill where the Temple stood and all the altars that were in Jerusalem, and he dumped them outside the city.16 Then he restored the altar of the Lord and sacrificed peace offerings and thanksgiving offerings on it. He also encouraged the people of Judah to worship the Lord, the God of Israel.17 However, the people still sacrificed at the pagan shrines, though only to the Lord their God.
18 The rest of the events of Manasseh’s reign, his prayer to God, and the words the seers spoke to him in the name of the Lord, the God of Israel, are recorded in The Book of the Kings of Israel.19 Manasseh’s prayer, the account of the way God answered him, and an account of all his sins and unfaithfulness are recorded in The Record of the Seers.[b] It includes a list of the locations where he built pagan shrines and set up Asherah poles and idols before he humbled himself and repented.20 When Manasseh died, he was buried in his palace. Then his son Amon became the next king.
Amon Rules in Judah
21 Amon was twenty-two years old when he became king, and he reigned in Jerusalem two years.22 He did what was evil in the Lord’s sight, just as his father, Manasseh, had done. He worshiped and sacrificed to all the idols his father had made.23 But unlike his father, he did not humble himself before the Lord. Instead, Amon sinned even more.
24 Then Amon’s own officials conspired against him and assassinated him in his palace.25 But the people of the land killed all those who had conspired against King Amon, and they made his son Josiah the next king.
“The building blocks of your faith should be laid in the foundation of your heart so that you can move about, doing the good work for God.” ~Jon Barnes
Carrying heavy blocks and unread bibles around, while pretending to be a Christian is not a formula for success with God. Find a block of time to sit, read, study, listen, or share stories with loved ones to help you to internalize these important stories with family.Ultimately, it is our responsibility to be good role models for your own church, your home.
Your house is not a home without God and the practice of His commandments in your lifestyle. Your commitment to your spouse and family stems from your solid commitment to your faithfulness to God. It is fun to read the stories to kids out aloud to answer questions and travel back in time to see life from a different perspective. When you see similarities of the present time, you begin to understand the importance of each story and building blocks they represent.
Allaying your ignorance and improving your biblical content is the best and lightest way to carry the building blocks of life.Using this information on a daily basis lifts your spirits, lightens your load, and gives the best perspective of success in your walk with God. Your life will be a blockbuster one way or the other, based on your choice to carry the Bible in your heart, not only in your hands. Decrease your ignorance and improve your knowledge.
Does your back hurt from all the sin you are carrying around or did you give up those roadblocks?
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The Land Divided West of the Jordan
14 The remaining tribes of Israel received land in Canaan as allotted by Eleazar the priest, Joshua son of Nun, and the tribal leaders.2 These nine and a half tribes received their grants of land by means of sacred lots, in accordance with the Lord’s command through Moses.3 Moses had already given a grant of land to the two and a half tribes on the east side of the Jordan River, but he had given the Levites no such allotment.4 The descendants of Joseph had become two separate tribes—Manasseh and Ephraim. And the Levites were given no land at all, only towns to live in with surrounding pasturelands for their livestock and all their possessions.5 So the land was distributed in strict accordance with the Lord’s commands to Moses.
Caleb Requests His Land
6 A delegation from the tribe of Judah, led by Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite, came to Joshua at Gilgal. Caleb said to Joshua, “Remember what the Lord said to Moses, the man of God, about you and me when we were at Kadesh-barnea.7 I was forty years old when Moses, the servant of the Lord, sent me from Kadesh-barnea to explore the land of Canaan. I returned and gave an honest report,8 but my brothers who went with me frightened the people from entering the Promised Land. For my part, I wholeheartedly followed the Lord my God.9 So that day Moses solemnly promised me, ‘The land of Canaan on which you were just walking will be your grant of land and that of your descendants forever, because you wholeheartedly followed the Lord my God.’
10 “Now, as you can see, the Lord has kept me alive and well as he promised for all these forty-five years since Moses made this promise—even while Israel wandered in the wilderness. Today I am eighty-five years old.11 I am as strong now as I was when Moses sent me on that journey, and I can still travel and fight as well as I could then.12 So give me the hill country that the Lord promised me. You will remember that as scouts we found the descendants of Anak living there in great, walled towns. But if the Lord is with me, I will drive them out of the land, just as the Lord said.”
13 So Joshua blessed Caleb son of Jephunneh and gave Hebron to him as his portion of land.14 Hebron still belongs to the descendants of Caleb son of Jephunneh the Kenizzite because he wholeheartedly followed the Lord, the God of Israel.15 (Previously Hebron had been called Kiriath-arba. It had been named after Arba, a great hero of the descendants of Anak.)