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Persevering in Faith...at Home

Thursday, October 1, 2015 @ 2:31 PM
Persevering in Faith...at Home Sometimes the hardest sell isn't to the stranger in the parking lot but the family member in the home.
I have come to realize that it doesn’t matter how much truth I share if by my actions I do not show respect, love, forgiveness, kindness, humility, and self-control. - Jessica Webb

We all know that it can be tough witnessing to the lost, especially those who are not receptive to the Word of God.  Some people the Lord sends across our paths become agitated when we share what He is doing in our life or when we pray or ask them if they would like to take part in a Bible study.  We try and try to share the gospel.  Eventually we grow weary and decide it would be best to just walk away because we have done all that we can do. 

But what about those who live under the same roof that we do?  We cannot just walk away from our spouses, our parents, or our children.  What is the Lord trying to teach us through the persecution coming from the ones who are so close and dear to our hearts?  Are we to abandon all hope in them (or anyone else the Lord leads us to minister to)?  They’ve made up their minds right?  No, in times of persecution from our loved ones we are called to stand on our Rock and let go of our own strength, knowledge and feelings that lead us astray standing only on Jesus.  Matthew 5:10 tells us that we are blessed when we are persecuted for righteousness’ sake.  So persevere through the persecution, forgive the hurt and rejection because it is not you they are rejecting but Christ in you and the hurts caused are not them but the one who is leading and guiding them.  “Do not grow weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9).

We must be a visual representation of who God is for those who are still blind and unable to understand the spiritual realm.  First Corinthians 1:18 helps us understand why they do not understand our passion and desire for them to know our Lord.  It says, “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” 

We are not going anywhere and neither will we ever stop sharing truth and loving them.  Jesus says the Holy Spirit is here to stay to reveal truth, to convict, and to comfort you. We need to get back to teaching each other, our children and the church how to persevere, withstand, sacrifice, lovingly correct, and commit ourselves to the lost…not just those in our home who we can’t walk away from but those in the world who are too easy for us to walk away from.  We are commanded to love our neighbor as we love ourselves and to place others before ourselves.  Especially those who are difficult to love.

Yet, I am flawed in the area of ministering to the lost in my family.  Through much loving correction from my Heavenly Father, I have come to realiz that the most precious gifts that He has given me-those in my own home-are too often treated less important than the people I am around outside of my home.  Why am I more kind, attentive, respectful, and concerned with others than my own family?  I am heartbroken to look back on the moments that I have had little patience with my family but have had abundant patience with my coworkers, people at Kroger, and those I attend church with. 

We are not to judge the lost because they do not know the truth that has been revealed to us through Christ.  We are to lovingly point them to the Father.  We are to be a direct demonstration of our Lord. We cannot do this in our own might but by relying on the Helper, the Holy Spirit, who dwells within us. If we let Him, He will direct our path, our words, our actions, our responses and even our body language.  But too many times I find myself responding out of my flesh to my family instead of out of the direction of the Holy Spirit.  Every time I give in to my fleshly desires no glory goes to God, I forfeit my witness of the gospel and I miss out on an opportunity of showing my family how great it is to be a child of the King. 

In many ways fellowship with them is like stepping onto a battle field.  Some days may seem peaceful but most days their spirit will demonstrate agitation from being in the presence of the Holy Spirit that dwells within.  I’m sure we can all agree that we have had countless opportunities lost due to the fact that we have allowed others moods to diminish our witness.  Even though the atmosphere I’m in can be like the Sea of Galilee-calm one moment and destructive storms and waves the next- my response does not have to be the same.  I must remember Exodus 14:14 which states – The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.  What the devil means to destroy, discourage and silence, God wants to use for His glory and all we have to do is be still. 

By dying to self we reveal the Lord to those we come in contact with daily.  We must rely on the Holy Spirit to guide us in being peacemakers, especially in our homes.  We must uphold the covenant marriage represents (I am a woman so I can only speak for what the Lord is calling me to as a wife and mother). A wife must love and respect her husband; being tenderhearted because of our obedience to our Heavenly Father.  We must set a standard for children to follow concerning their earthly father.  Our actions should show them how to submit to the head of our home’s authority (our husband and their father) because that is what our Heavenly Father has called us to do.  Daily we must let go of motives, distractions, and pride as we surrender ourselves to the ministry within our home. 

I don’t have an older woman that Titus 2:3-5 speaks of but I do have the Holy Spirit who is the best teacher.  He is teaching me how to love and respect my family.  The Holy Spirit is helping me understand how to sacrifice my feelings by trusting in Him with all of my heart instead of leaning on my own understanding so that the gospel can be lived out in my home.  Regardless of what I think or feel in a given time or situation I must continue to turn back to the Lord and His promise to me in 1 Peter 3:1-2- “in the same way submit yourself to your husband so that, if he does not believe the word, he will be won over without words by the your behavior, when he sees the purity and reverence of your life”. 

I have come to realize that it doesn’t matter how much truth I share if by my actions I do not show respect, love, forgiveness, kindness, humility, and self-control.  I am just a hypocrite rattling off religion.  I have also realized that I must never allow the devil to creep in and place the victim card in my pocket.  “Oh woe is me” nothing!  The attacks we endure are practice rounds to teach us how to live out Ephesians 4:32: “be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.”  It is God’s way of preparing us now to be able to face bigger battles later.  We are all continuously being trained. If we do not pray that the Lord will give us spiritual eyes to see and spiritual ears to hear we will be robbed of the molding and shaping of the Master Potter by being consumed with what others have done or said to us.  In Christ there is no room to be offended to allow the devil to get a foothold on us and plant ungodly thoughts that will hinder us from reaching the lost and furthering the gospel.   John 3:30 should always remain our motto: “God must become greater and greater, and I must become less and less.” 

Attorney General Sessions needs to hear from you

In August, Judge Reed O'Connor of the Federal District Court for the Northern District of Texas blocked President Barack Obama's transgender bathroom directive. The Obama Administration appealed that decision to the Fifth Circuit in New Orleans. The good news is that, over the weekend, Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ Department of Justice withdrew the appellate motion filed by the Obama administration. This means that Judge O'Connor's ruling will likely stand. This is a victory for our children's safety and the rule of law.

Thank Attorney General Sessions for this action to protect our children's privacy and safety.

Related to this radical attempt by the Obama administration is the retail chain Target’s decision last April. Target announced it was allowing men who felt like women into female restrooms and changing facilities. Target’s policy undermines the privacy and safety of women and children. Men don't belong in the same changing area as women. For this reason, AFA launched the #BoycottTarget campaign which has been immensely successful by garnering nearly 1.5 million signatures of individuals who will no longer be shopping at Target until they reverse this misguided policy.

This recent action by the Department of Justice sends a signal that policies like Target’s should not be pushed on American families, much less America’s children. The #BoycottTarget movement is making a difference. We must let Attorney General Sessions know that we appreciate his department’s actions.

Thank Attorney General Sessions for this bold action to protect America’s schoolchildren.

Your effort in signing this petition will not go unnoticed. We must speak up if we are going to protect our children.

TAKE ACTION

Thank Attorney General Jeff Sessions for withdrawing from President Obama's transgender bathroom directive.

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