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Tag: Worship God

Experience Rest in God

(The Kimberly Joy Show: God Says, “Rest in Me and Enjoy Your Life”)

HOW DO WE EXPERIENCE REST IN GOD?
In order to rest in God, we have to have total faith in Him. When we choose to believe God above everything and everyone else, we experience rest. Philippians 4:7 says we experience a peace that is beyond human comprehension. It’s something that can’t be explained. For example, you may be going through something really difficult, yet you appear to be very calm. As a result, those around you, who don’t know about resting in God, think something is seriously wrong with you! Due to your current situation, they expect you to be upset, angry or depressed. Because you’re not, they assume you’re in denial about your situation. But, you’re not in denial! You’ve just chosen to put all your faith in God!

Personally speaking, I know resting in God is not always easy. Just because I have been saved and filled with the Holy Spirit doesn’t mean I will automatically handle every situation, good or bad, as God would expect. I have to work at it every day! Why? I’m still in this flesh. I’m not perfect. However, I do serve a perfect God, and I have to make a decision to pursue the perfect God every day!

God has provided us with His Word to show us what to do, how to behave, how to think and what to avoid. God doesn’t just TELL us to rest in Him, but He shows us how. Throughout the Bible are examples we can emulate. In my article “Resting in God,” I shared the story of Paul and Silas when they were in jail (Acts 16). While they were in jail, they worshipped God! They could have gotten mad or been depressed. Perhaps they were experiencing some of those emotions. However, instead of yielding to those negative emotions, they pursued God’s peace. They chose to still believe God. Consequently, they were set free from jail because of their faith. James 2:26 (King James Version) says:

“…..faith without works is dead…..”

Paul and Silas didn’t just claim to have faith in God, but they proved it by praying instead of complaining and by singing praises to God instead of worrying or crying. They did this all while locked in chains behind a prison wall.

Another individual from the Bible, who demonstrated how to rest in God, was King David. Anyone who is familiar with David’s story knows he made some serious mistakes during his life. Nevertheless, even when he fell down, he found rest in God through his repentance. In Psalms 51:10-12 (KJV), David prayed to God:

“10 Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.

11 Cast me not away from Thy presence; and take not Thy Holy Spirit from me.

12 Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation; and uphold me with Thy free Spirit.”

King David prayed this particular prayer after God sent the prophet Nathan to confront him about a sinful act he had tried to cover up
(II Samuel 12). Although God could have easily struck David down for his wickedness, He chose not to. Instead, He extended His love, mercy, and grace to David. Recognizing that God was giving him another chance, David repented—–he SINCERELY repented.

WHO IS CONDEMNING YOU?
Like David, you may have done something you’re not proud of or once lived a life you wish you could forget. Even though you have asked God to forgive you, you still feel guilty. Why do you feel guilty? Is God condemning you? NO!!! The eighth chapter of Romans lets us know that those of us who belong to Christ Jesus are no longer condemned. We have been set free!

So, if you still feel guilty, even after you have sincerely repented, perhaps it’s because those around you like to remind you of your past or because you haven’t forgiven yourself.

Either way, Satan is behind it! But, he’s a LIAR! God doesn’t want you holding onto that guilt. He wants you to let it go and rest in Him. Trust in His power of forgiveness and salvation.

While you may have to suffer some consequences for your past wrongdoing, it still doesn’t mean God hasn’t forgiven you and changed you on the inside. For instance, if you have sex with someone to whom you’re not married, you may wind up with an unwanted pregnancy or with an STD. If that’s the case, it’s not a sign that God hasn’t forgiven you. It’s a sign that you’re reaping what you sowed. However, as you move forward in God and strive to live holy, He can bless that baby in a special way or completely heal your body.

Recently, a young lady contacted me requesting prayer. She admitted to doing something she knew was wrong and was feeling bad about it. I assured her I would pray for her. I then encouraged her to not beat herself up and reminded her of God’s love and forgiveness. I also explained to her that her feeling of guilt was a good sign. Why? It proves she has a conscience and that she is still God’s daughter. Finally, I encouraged her to avoid going down that road again.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE CONTENT?
I’ve shared before that you can find rest in God through worship, prayer, and obedience. You can also find rest in God by simply enjoying your life. Bible teacher and author Joyce Meyer says, “Learn how to enjoy where you are on the way to where you’re going.” In other words, smile often and laugh as much as possible. Just enjoy the stage at which you are in your life. You may not be where you want to be or have certain things you would like right now. Nonetheless, that’s no reason to be down in the dumps. Trust me, someone somewhere wishes he or she had YOUR life. Paul says in Philippians 4:11:

“…I have learned how to be content with whatever I have.”

To be content with where you currently are in life doesn’t mean you shouldn’t desire more because God has more for you. It just means your desires shouldn’t cause you anxiety and stress. Your desires shouldn’t be more important than you being grateful and giving God the glory. God doesn’t want to hear our murmuring and complaining. Rather, He wants to hear our praise and see our smiling faces. He wants us to extend a helping hand to someone in need. When we focus on the Lord and do what pleases Him, Psalms 37:4 says He is guaranteed to give us what we desire.

Resting in God takes away the pressure Satan and the world try to place on us. When we give everything to God, He gives us His peace, and then things can be done His way….the RIGHT way. So, make it a point every day to rest in God and gratefully enjoy this life He has so graciously given you!

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When You Look At Me, What Do YOU See?

WHEN YOU LOOK AT ME, WHAT DO YOU SEE?
The following excerpt is a spoken word I wrote and presented a couple of years ago at a women’s conference. As you read it, you may recognize the story.

“When you look at me, what do you see?
Do you see a scared little orphan girl who has just lost both Mommy and Daddy?

Tossed from this relative…..to this relative…..to this relative…..to this relative…..to this relative…..
She’s looking for that love that awaited her every morning with a smile on her face,
That love that held her tightly in his arms when she awoke from a bad dream,
That nurturing love that taught her how to knead dough in the kitchen,
That strong love that gave her a lesson on how to fish.

When you look at me, what do you see?
Do you see a young lady who is now in search of the love she lost so long ago when it was buried in the grave?
With a fragile heart, she’s now willing to do anything for anyone in hopes of feeling that someone cares.
Craving warmth and affection, she yields herself to the abuse and misuse of men.

Sad and lonely, she jumps from this marriage…..to this marriage…..to this marriage…..to this marriage…..to this marriage,
Finally settling for a man who doesn’t find her worthy of a ring.

When you look at me, what do you see?
Do you see a woman who is tired and ashamed?
Her mistakes replay in her mind over…..and over…..and over…..and over…..and over again,
Mistakes made all in the name of love.

On a warm afternoon, she approaches Jacob’s well where she finds a strange man sitting nearby.
She’s amazed when he parts His lips to speak, let alone ask her for a drink.
After all, she’s a Samaritan; he’s a Jew.
She’s nothing!
Or at least that’s what she’s believed ever since that nurturing, strong love she once knew was buried deep in the ground.

When you look at me, what do you see?
Do you see a woman who, in spite of life’s hardships, still has a gleam of hope?

A hope that is ignited when the man at the well offers her the love she’s been searching, for so long,
A love that won’t abuse her, misuse her and then throw her away,
A love that endures forever…..and ever…..and ever…..and ever…..and evermore,
A love that, once received, must be shared with everyone she meets,
A love that draws others to the well where they also receive salvation and healing.

So, again I ask the question…..when you look at me, what do YOU see?”

The spoken word “When You Look At Me, What Do You See?” was inspired by a well-known story in the Bible.

Recognize it?

It’s the story of the Samaritan woman Jesus met one day at a well in Samaria. This story can be found in John 4.

WHAT IS YOUR STORY?
Like the woman at the well, we each have a story. Granted, I don’t know her full story, because we’re only offered a glimpse into her life. However, God gave me an imagination, and I can imagine what life might’ve been like for her. I can picture what might’ve happened to cause her to make certain decisions. There’s a story behind her decisions.

Gospel singer Vashawn Mitchell wrote a song that says, “You don’t know my story, all the things that I’ve been through. You can’t feel my pain, what I had to go through to get here.” Like Mitchell states in the song, we each have endured hardships. Perhaps those hardships include abuse, molestation, poverty, prejudice, illness or death. As a result, we may be angry, confused, and even depressed.

What is the root cause of such pain?

SIN!

Sin is defined as “rebellion against God; wickedness, evil”. According to Genesis 3, sin first entered the world when Adam and Eve disobeyed God. This truth is reiterated in Romans 5:12 which says:

“Consider this: sin entered our world through one man Adam; and through sin, death followed in hot pursuit. Death spread rapidly to infect all people on the earth as they engaged in sin.”

Nevertheless, Romans 5:19 assures us that:

“Just as through one man’s disobedience every one of us were made sinners, so through the obedience of the one man [Jesus], many of us will be made right.”

WHAT DO YOU NEED FROM JESUS?
When Jesus met this woman at the well, I don’t believe it was by accident. As He and His disciples were traveling, they could’ve stopped anywhere at any time to rest. However, Jesus knew He needed to be at this particular well at this particular time on this particular day to meet this particular woman.

Why?

She NEEDED Him!

She was in need of salvation and healing—–not necessarily physical healing, but mental, emotional, and spiritual healing.

When Jesus initially spoke to the woman, she was surprised. Jews didn’t normally affiliate with Samaritans.

Why not?

At this time in history, the Jews viewed the Samaritan people as inferior. For one, the Samaritans had a history of worshipping idols. Plus, they were labeled half-breeds because they were the products of intermarriages with foreigners. The act of marrying and having children with foreigners was greatly frowned upon. So, given their history, it’s no wonder she questioned why Jesus was speaking to her.

During their encounter, Jesus inquired about the woman’s husband, which brought to light all of her baggage. This woman had been married FIVE times, and the man she was currently with wasn’t even her husband.

Did Jesus have to ask about her relationship status in order to save her and set her free?

Yes, He did! After all, that was a serious problem for her! She needed to be healed from whatever issues she was carrying that had prompted her to have multiple marriages. Being married several times was proof that a man was not going to give this Samaritan woman what she was TRULY looking for.

According to the Bible, having a husband is a good thing. However, as women, we can’t expect men to do for us what only JESUS can do. God didn’t equip any man to do so. It doesn’t matter how nice, intelligent, strong and even rich he may be. This was a truth the Samaritan woman came to realize that day. Jesus said to the woman, “Receive Me and I will set you free, and you will no longer need to look for love in all the wrong places.” Essentially, only JESUS can provide true fulfillment (love, peace, joy, healing, etc.). Man is flawed, but Jesus is not!

Moreover, in John 4:24 Jesus said to her:

“God is a Spirit: and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.”

In order to worship God the Father sincerely, we must have a relationship with Him, which comes by accepting His Son Jesus as our Lord and Savior. Personally speaking, I can worship God from my spirit because I’m connected to Him. I can hear God’s voice, sense His presence, and know what steps I should take because I’m connected to Him. I have confidence and a more positive self-image because I’m connected to Him. No man can wreak havoc in my life because I’m connected to GOD.

Just like the Samaritan woman, no matter what you’ve done in your past and regardless of your background, where you come from, your family’s reputation or your own reputation, Jesus LOVES you, and He’s here for you! All you have to do is believe and surrender to Him. When you do, like the woman at the well, He will change you and make your life BRAND NEW!

Part I – “When You Look At Me, What Do You See?”

Part II – “When You Look At Me, What Do You See?”

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Rest in Me


“Rest in Me,” are the words I often hear God speak. Although the Bible states, “Don’t worry about anything…” (Philippians 4:6a), I still sometimes find myself worrying, not about everything, but about the things my human mind can’t figure out. If I can’t see how or when a situation is going to be resolved, I become uneasy. The uneasiness results from realizing that I’m not in complete control. However, to have faith is to allow GOD to be in control.

Resting in God is not always an easy thing to do. In fact, it can be downright difficult. I believe that many of us, if not all of us, like to feel in control. We want to be in complete control of our jobs, finances, love lives, children, etc. Nevertheless, it doesn’t work that way. If I try to control every circumstance and person in my life, then I’m taking on more than God has designed for me to handle. Have you ever heard the phrase “He’ll never put more on you than you can bear?” This is derived from I Corinthians 10:13 which says, “The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, He will show you a way out so that you can endure.”

Temptation is typically defined as “a strong urge or desire to do something, especially something wrong or unwise.” However, in the Bible a temptation is also “a trial or test”. For instance, in Genesis 22, God tempted or tested Abraham when He instructed Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac. God wasn’t trying to persuade Abraham to do something wrong. In fact, later God provided a ram as the real sacrifice (Genesis 22:13). Rather, God put Abraham through this test to prove his faith. James 1:2-3 says, “Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.” Verse 12 of the same chapter also says, “God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him.” Although God takes us through tests from time to time, as I Corinthians 10:13 assures us, it’s never something designed to overwhelm us because during the tests, we are to depend totally on Him (Proverbs 3:5). So if I find myself becoming overwhelmed and stressed out, it is simply because I haven’t placed it all in God’s hands. I can’t blame anyone but myself!

God says, “Rest in Me.” What does it mean to rest? To rest is “to be free from anxiety or disturbance”. Another definition is “to remain confident”. Therefore, when we rest in God, our minds are at peace because we know that God has our situations under control. As I mentioned, resting in God is not always easy. Nevertheless, it can be done if we put it into practice. The following tips are things I had to put into practice in order to learn how to rest in God.

HOW YOU CAN REST IN GOD

1. Find time to worship God. During the hustle and bustle of the day, find a place to be alone where you can worship God. Believe it or not, I have had some awesome worship experiences in my bathroom and, even, in my car. When my mind is being bombarded with so many thoughts and I find myself becoming sad or angry, worship relieves me. As I sing or listen to a favorite worship song and meditate on the goodness of God, I am reminded that He is my everything. In that moment, He becomes priority, while everything and everyone else take a backseat. Then His love, peace and joy fill my heart. I am no longer bothered by my present circumstance because in the midst of worship, God reassures me that He has my back! In that moment God may even reveal some things to me and give me the answers I’ve been seeking in prayer.

These worship experiences call to mind the story of Paul and Silas who were beaten and thrown in jail for taking a stand for God’s Truth.

Acts 16:25-35:
“Around midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening. Suddenly, there was a massive earthquake, and the prison was shaken to its foundations. All the doors immediately flew open, and the chains of every prisoner fell off! The jailer woke up to see the prison doors wide open. He assumed the prisoners had escaped, so he drew his sword to kill himself. But Paul shouted to him, ‘Stop! Don’t kill yourself! We are all here!’ The jailer called for lights and ran to the dungeon and fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them out and asked, ‘Sirs, what must I do to be saved?’ They replied, ‘Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved, along with everyone in your household.’ And they shared the word of the Lord with him and with all who lived in his household. Even at that hour of the night, the jailer cared for them and washed their wounds. Then he and everyone in his household were immediately baptized. He brought them into his house and set a meal before them, and he and his entire household rejoiced because they all believed in God. The next morning the city officials sent the police to tell the jailer, ‘Let those men go!'”

Just as Paul and Silas were set free from physical chains, worshipping God sets me free from the thoughts that try to chain my mind.

2. Pray. According to Philippians 4:6, God doesn’t want us to worry about anything, but to pray about everything. No problem is too big for God! Therefore, when we pray we must trust that God hears us and will answer our prayers. If we trust that God honors His children’s prayers, then anxiety should not be present. Prayer and worry do NOT go hand in hand. James 1:6-7 says, “But when you ask [God], you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord.”

3. Obey God. To trust God is to obey God. One day I was discussing with a friend that we as humans cause ourselves greater heartache when we choose our way over God’s way. The Bible is our instruction manual for living. Unfortunately, many fail to follow it. II Timothy 3:16-17 says, “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.”

If we trust and obey God, we will have rest. For example, during my time in grad school I learned that I had to have surgery. This was a serious dilemma because the spring quarter had just begun and I was taking my final class: Statistics. Since I still had time to withdraw from the class without being penalized, the logical choice was to withdraw and pick up the course the following quarter. Although it seemed like a good idea, it wasn’t an easy decision to make because it meant postponing my graduation. Thus, the night before the withdrawal deadline I asked God to tell me what to do. I had made up my mind to withdraw, but, in case it wasn’t necessary to do so, I needed to hear from the One Who knows all. To my delight, as I slept God clearly spoke to me, “Stay in the class. There will be people who will help you.” Having a sudden peace about the situation, I stayed in the class, and as God reassured me, my professor and several classmates were more than willing to help me. If I had chosen to follow my “sensible” mind, instead of obeying the voice of God, receiving my Masters degree would have been delayed, which, undoubtedly, would have caused me unnecessary distress .

4. Enjoy your life. Best-selling author and Bible teacher Joyce Meyer says, “Learn how to enjoy where you are on the way to where you’re going.” In other words, smile often and laugh as much as possible. Just enjoy the stage at which you are in your life. The apostle Paul says, “…I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little. For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength,” (Philippians 4:11-13). To be content doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t desire more because God has more for you. It just means that the desires shouldn’t cause anxiety and stress. When we focus on the Lord, He is guaranteed to give us the desires of our hearts (Psalms 37:4).

Resting in God takes away the pressure that Satan and the world try to place on us. When we give everything to God, He in turn, gives us a peace that the average person can’t comprehend (Philippians 4:7). So, every day I am making it a point to rest in God and gratefully enjoy this life He has graciously given me.

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