To the Hypocritical believers in Jesus

Many proclaim belief in Jesus Christ, yet continue living sinful lives. To those who do this, I share this Scripture passage with you, that you may fear God and repent, for He calls out hypocrites, and commands all who follow Him to be holy:

“For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. Declare these things; exhort and rebuke with all authority. Let no one disregard you.” (Titus 2:11-15)

If there’s sin in your life that you are justifying, when the bible claims God hates and condemns sin, you may be honest in your declaration of belief in God, but belief alone will not send you to heaven.

Sin is a crime against God, and He “judges all wrong doers.” Each of us have done wrong—lied, lusted, hated, used God’s name as a cuss word, stole—therefore each of us are rightfully judged by God. If we face Him with our sinful track-record, He will rightfully close the doors of His holy eternal dwelling place and say, “Depart from Me, worker of iniquity, I never knew you.”

But you know what God did for us so we don’t have to be judged by Him according to our sins?

He sent His perfect, holy Son to live a perfect and sinless life, then had Him die a bloody, excruciating death on a cross in our place, that those of us who forsake our sins and put our trust in Jesus may be forgiven of all unrighteousness and become children of God, by the gift of His Holy Spirit who lives in believers, and receive eternal life. Not by our own good works apart from Christ, but by Christ’s perfect sacrifice on our behalf.

In order to be made right with God we need to be forgiven by Him. The great news is God is a forgiving God, but the way to forgiveness is through His Son. If you try to face the Holy Creator in your sinful, unrepentant state, He will deny you. But if you come to Him after turning away from your sins and embracing His Son, you will likewise be embraced and have your name written in His book of life.

Will you choose today to say goodbye to your sins and the things/people that help cause you to sin, and choose to follow Christ? You have nothing but hell to lose, and everything that’s heavenly to gain.

Praying for you,

Natasha

Christians justifying suing each other? Seriously?

Has this Scripture passage become void?

“Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unrighteous, and not before the saints? Do you not know that the saints will judge the world? And if the world will be judged by you, are you unworthy to judge the smallest matters? Do you not know that we shall judge angels? How much more, things that pertain to this life? If then you have judgments concerning things pertaining to this life, do you appoint those who are least esteemed by the church to judge? I say this to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you, not even one, who will be able to judge between his brethren? But brother goes to law against brother, and that before unbelievers! Now therefore, it is already an utter failure for you that you go to law against one another. Why do you not rather accept wrong? Why do you not rather let yourselves be cheated? No, you yourselves do wrong and cheat, and you do these things to your brethren! Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites … (I Corinthians 6:1-9 NKJV)

I am saddened by self-proclaiming Christians suing each other. Does not the bible teach the total opposite? We are not to fight amongst ourselves, we are not to stir up strife, we are actually BLESSED if we suffer wrongfully for our Lord! Yet we demand vengeance and justice as if it is ours to wield. What pride! And here there are self-proclaimed Christians puffed up and taking pride in other believers suing each other. Seriously?! How unlike Christ and fleshly! He suffered wrongfully but He prayed about it, He did not take His accusers to court. Are we not to follow Christ’s footsteps? Who do we think we are? Are we God? Are we not to focus our efforts on loving and building up the brethren, rather than wasting our energy and precious time on costly lawsuits? How foolish! How bizarre! We should be broken over our pride, not cheering each other on because of it!

I pray we as true disciples would follow Christ’s humble example and this truth:

“Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles, that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may, by your good works which they observe, glorify God in the day of visitation. Therefore submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake, whether to the king as supreme, or to governors, as to those who are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do good. For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men— as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God. Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king. Servants, be submissive to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and gentle, but also to the harsh. For this is commendable, if because of conscience toward God one endures grief, suffering wrongfully. For what credit is it if, when you are beaten for your faults, you take it patiently? But when you do good and suffer, if you take it patiently, this is commendable before God. For to this you were called, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow His steps: “Who committed no sin, Nor was deceit found in His mouth”; who, when He was reviled, did not revile in return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously; who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness— by whose stripes you were healed. For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.” (I Peter 2:11-25 NKJV)

Christians aren’t helpless sinners so please stop labeling yourself one

“What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it? Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection, knowing this, that our old man was crucified with Him, that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves of sin. For he who has died has been freed from sin. Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, dies no more. Death no longer has dominion over Him. For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God. Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. For sin shall not have dominion over you, for you are not under law but under grace.” (Romans 6:1-14 NKJV)

Something that has been concerning me is a mantra I hear often in the church, “We’re all sinners.” Biblically, I see Paul calling the believers saints much, much more than he calls them sinners. In fact, he may have only called himself a sinner, and I’m pretty sure he was speaking about his past life before Christ.

This “I’m a sinner” Mantra is dangerous to our minds. We are saints, we are children of God, we are a royal priesthood, a chosen people. This is a beautiful truth that God, in His love, has granted us. Why not embrace our true titles and live accordingly?

So my beloved brethren, do not accept the notion that you are a helpless sinner without self-control. If you have Jesus, the same Spirit that raised Him from the dead lives in you, so you are “more than a conqueror.” As the Romans passage I just shared with you states: sin shall not have dominion over you. That means it won’t have power over you, if indeed you have the Holy Spirit and are following Christ. Obey His Word, and you will do well and be holy.

I love you guys

The Mega Church Model is Destructive

The Mega church model is destructive.

It props up a man and helps him stumble.

Jesus said the least of all shall be the greatest, and Paul rebuked the early church for exalting him and other men.

But how many of us do this today?

I’m guilty too. “Oh I go to such and such church with such and such pastor” Instead of just, “I love Jesus and follow Him.”

It’s so dangerous because pride and sin are waiting to devour us and if people are always fawning over you and you’re famous, it comes to a point where you start to think highly of yourself.

And with the mega church mind-set, I think we focus on saving the world so much that we neglect those right in front of us. And when we get so comfortable in one place, 30 years with the same people, we get complacent. The apostles were always on the move. They would stay in one place and disciple the church for like a year or so, building up the saints, then move on to another place. It becomes too routine after a while when we just stay in one spot with the same people. Most of the renowned Christians in the bible were vagabonds.

David fell because he was comfortable at home instead of out on the battle field where it was hard and painful and dangerous. The Christian life isn’t comfortable. If it is, then something must be off.

I think it also becomes a job. You’re paid, you have a work schedule of when you’re going to preach. It’s not like the Spirit leads you anymore. You’ve put Him in a box based on your work schedule.

I think we all have strayed away and have done church in the way we think is best, not the way God knows it’s best. It’s like a business model instead of an unpredictable wherever the Spirit leads model.

Even apostle James said don’t say “tomorrow we will do such and such and go to this place” for you don’t know what tomorrow will bring. It’s a form of pride really. But today’s church is like, “Wednesday night is bible study, Sunday is church service” and that’s the routine and the schedule. It’s not exciting anymore.

I pray we don’t exalt man anymore and just stay humble, serving one another and loving each other. May we not treat one man more special than another for we are all one in Christ.

Please forgive us Father, and revive us, Your church.

I’m A Christian Who Often Gets Messed Up Dreams

The proud have forged a lie against me, But I will keep Your precepts with my whole heart. (Psalms 119:69 NKJV)

Do you ever get nightmares, Christian? Do you often get dreams where you do sinful things that you know you would not do in real life? Do you wake up after the fact feeling guilty and asking God for forgiveness?

I do.

The enemy loves attacking me while I sleep. 98% of the time when I dream, it’s always an attack, a lie, an assault on my subconscious. There’s usually a struggle, like I’m not really engaging it, or if I’m about to I stop and speak truth, reality. Then the demons take their masks off and I start rebuking.

But when these dreams occur, I usually fast after waking up and then it stops for maybe two weeks and then the demons are back. Since it’s so frequent, I may have to begin this routine:

“I rise before the dawning of the morning, And cry for help; I hope in Your word. My eyes are awake through the night watches, That I may meditate on Your word.” (Psalms 119:147, 148 NKJV)

Our God is so faithful to speak to us when we read His Word. I make it a point now to read His Word while I’m in bed after I’m awake. Then I’ll read more. So yesterday and today, I decided to read Psalms 119. And all these verses jump off the page and speak to my heart regarding the messed up dreams I had throughout the early morning:

“The wicked have laid a snare for me, Yet I have not strayed from Your precepts. Your testimonies I have taken as a heritage forever, For they are the rejoicing of my heart. I have inclined my heart to perform Your statutes Forever, to the very end. You are my hiding place and my shield; I hope in Your word. Depart from me, you evildoers, For I will keep the commandments of my God!” (Psalms 119:110-112, 114, 115 NKJV)

So if you get attacked with demonic dreams, suggestive or sinful dreams, may you pray these Scriptures and fast.

Don’t buy into the lies the enemy feeds you about yourself subconsciously. Since he can’t get you to do it in reality, I guess he tries to sell you on the ideas through dreams.

Just continue to set your heart on obedience to God, cleansing your mind through His Word, and chasing away the demons by fasting.

Praying for you,

Natasha

Bad Circumstances Are Just Opportunities To Serve, Witness, Or Grow

Beloved,

Hubby and I are going through a tough time financially. Actually, we have been for most of our marriage. But something our Kind Father is teaching me is that every instance is an opportunity to either serve, witness, or grow.

When something isn’t put away, it’s an opportunity to serve him or her by putting it back for them. If I’m challenged by a tough circumstance, it’s an opportunity to show others the amazing peace Christ gives, and it’s always an opportunity to mature in my Christ-likeness.

The bible has several commands regarding how we are to deal with our mind. You know what that means? It means we can and are expected to control our thoughts. So when our enemy entices us to think anxiously, doubtfully, lustfully, bitterly, or anything ungodly, we actually can choose what and how we think. We, by the power of the Holy Spirit, and through knowledge of the Scriptures, can set our minds on Christ and meditate on things that are pure, holy, good, praiseworthy, or perfect.

We don’t have to have bad thoughts. We can control our mind.

So, here’s some Scriptures to encourage you.

If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. (Colossians 3:1, 2 NKJV)

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you. (Philippians 4:8, 9 NKJV)

For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ, (II Corinthians 10:4, 5 NKJV)

Therefore, with your minds ready for action, be serious and set your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 1:13 HCSB)

Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God. (Romans 12:2 HCSB)

If the enemy can get to your mind, you’re done for. Trust in and lean on God’s understanding by studying and reading His Word daily and meditating on it throughout the day (speaking it). Train yourself to see every instance the way Jesus would see it. Then, you’ll walk in peace and joy through everything.

Praying for you saints,

Natasha

Jesus died for me, He died for you, and He died for the homosexual too

Just because I love the homosexual man or woman, does not mean I will support gay marriage. Though it may hurt your feelings, the wounds of a friend are trustworthy, but the kisses of an enemy are excessive.

If I truly believe all those who refuse to repent of their sins and trust in Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior will go to hell when they die, how can I be loving if I do not share the truth with them? Everyone has fallen short of God’s holy perfection. None of us are good enough for heaven. I’m not good enough, it’s Christ who was good enough and He deserves all the credit.

Sin is sin. Whether you’re heterosexual or homosexual, what the Word of God calls sin is sin. Lying, adultery, murderer, blasphemy, fornication. Before I surrendered my life to the good and loving lordship of Christ, I practiced sexual sin, lying, envy, hatred, drunkenness, violence, sorcery. I was on the road to hell too!

But thank God the Father in His exceedingly great mercy, He made a way to redeem ALL of us: through the death and resurrection of His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ.

I, as a Christian, am here to share with you the good news of Jesus Christ, as He commands me to do. Out of love, I share with you the wonderful gift of Christ’s love for all mankind that He took every one of our sins to that cross on Calvary two thousand years ago, and bled and died for them, shamefully bare before many as they mocked and spat upon Him. He did this for me, He did this for you, He did this for your neighbor, for my mom, your sibling, the whole world! Then He conquered death to prove to us all that He truly can give us forgiveness and eternal life—access to heaven.

But not only does Jesus give us the keys to heaven, He gives us His very own Holy Spirit to live in our hearts and transform us. He gives us the power to obey Him and live righteously in His sight that we might endure temptation and make it to His heavenly kingdom, and live a life of freedom from sin and addiction, an abundant life full of joy and peace even in the midst of this dark world, as we await His return.

That’s how much He loves us! Dying and then rising from the dead wasn’t enough in His eyes. He had to give us His own power to ensure we would be fit to live in His presence for all eternity, where the bible says God Himself will wipe away every tear from our eyes, where there will be no more pain, and only joy, peace and true love.

I pray this is the destiny you embrace. I pray you let go of whatever you’re living for now if it’s not Jesus and give Him your whole heart instead. I promise He won’t break it. He came to heal, not just physical illness, but emotional and mental as well. He desires to give you a future and a hope. He created you in your mother’s womb. His plans for you are good, pleasing, acceptable and perfect. He knows what He created you for. He holds the answers to your purpose and calling in life. He loves you, He loves you, He loves you. His Son’s sacrifice on the cross proved it.

Is My Calling Distracting Me From The Call?

*When I speak of our “calling” in this post, I’m speaking about our career or artistic talents.*

Could it be that we’re so concerned with our “calling” that we’re actually distracted from doing God’s will? Isn’t our “callings” just a part of God’s will, but in no way the whole? Isn’t God’s will made plain in the Scriptures? If we abide in and obey His Word, won’t He direct our paths?
Aren’t we commanded not to worry, but instead to pray? Aren’t we taught not to fret, but to simply trust God?
I think sometimes we overthink being a disciple of Christ. Instead of just loving Him and others, enjoying Him and enjoying the fellowship of our brothers in the Light, we get in control-mode and stress over what our calling is. But we shouldn’t let our calling distract us from doing God’s will.

May we be at peace with the fact that in Christ we are significant, that it isn’t our calling that makes us significant. Nor let us think that in order to accomplish God’s will and advance the kingdom we must be walking in our calling. Sometimes it takes years—decades—to begin to walk in your calling. Are you going to just wait for that season and neglect all those God has placed around you to love and disciple?

What matters to God is the fruit we produce. We can work extra hard on perfecting our gifts that tie into our calling, and saving money or studying and planning ahead for that calling, but that doesn’t produce much fruit in the meantime does it?

Me sitting alone at my computer for hours typing my book will produce fruit later, but it very well may get published five years from now, and all the hours I invested in it everyday could have been cut considerably so I can instead love, encourage, and pray for my husband and those around me, or invest in calling a sister and building up her faith. All of our work will be tested by fire in the end, and if what we’ve built turns to ashes, God’s not going to be very pleased.

I want to make sure my husband and those I disciple enter the new city’s pearly gates and receive imperishable crowns.

I’m not saying you become lazy and don’t work on cultivating the spirit of excellence, but I think time is scarce so we must be as shrewd as serpents with what little of it we have.

I don’t want God to play back the reel of my life and then I see thousands of times I was working diligently on my books, but my husband or mother or sister was enduring spiritual attacks alone and greatly needing backup. That will be humiliating and disheartening and I’m certain I’ve already done this plenty of times before.

May we be alert in prayer as the Scriptures command, rather than too busy crafting our gifts.

This I know, we’re all called to make disciples, and we don’t need to write books, lead worship, make films, or be rich to do it. We just need to love those around us.

Agreed?

I’m A Parent Who Encourages My 13-Year-Old To Have Sex

Parents are naive, or in denial.

To allow your thirteen-year-old to listen to sexually promiscuous music, have a boyfriend or girlfriend, permit them to go to their house, video chat with he or she in the bedroom with the door closed, and have a lock on their iPhone is in my opinion, highly encouraging sexual activity.

How can you expect your child to abstain from sex if you don’t do your job as a parent by teaching and protecting them?

Is responding to the issue with, “They’re going to do whatever they want,” really good parenting? Are not children to obey? And if they don’t, could it be possible that you have trained them to get what they want by not disciplining them thoroughly and setting boundaries?

I’m not a parent, but I have taught, taken care of, babysat, and mentored young people for a total of eight years. Though I have yet to have children, I listen to father and doctor, Bob Barnes of Sheridan House ministries on Parenting Today weekdays at 2:45pm to 3pm via ReachFm, and more parenting talks on Family Life Today and other Christian programs, and have observed the parenting of those with highly obedient and well-behaved children. I only share with you what I’ve learned from them and what I know to be true about many teens since I was there and still mentor them today.

I get emails from tempted fourteen-year-old girls. When they’re that young and in a relationship, I always encourage them to stay single and focus on their relationship with Jesus. I tell them not to consider dating (I actually teach on courting), until they’re of age or maturity to begin considering marriage. To be in a relationship before this time is to tempt oneself into sexual immorality. Hormones are blazing and it only takes some affection from your child’s crush to release the flood waters.

So I write this out of love and concern. I hear the tragedies of teen pregnancy and abortion. I know of the STD epidemic. I’m sure you parents do as well.

Please set up boundaries and restrictions for your child until they’re out of your house and on their own. The culture we live in is saturated with sex. Practically every song on secular radio is about dating and having sex. Nearly every PG-13 and R-rated movie have sexually suggestive material, and the magazines your child is confronted with in the grocery checkout isle shout for your daughter to be a sex-guru. Have you read some of the titles? I flip over those magazines and others that have half-naked women on them. But this is the day your child lives in. Sex-messages are everywhere, and that is why you have to be all the more diligent in protecting them.

Do you really want media teaching your children what sex is and when it should be experienced? Public schools are actually having a field-day teaching your children about all the ways they can be sexually active and then passing out condoms like candies.

Please guard over your precious children. They just want someone to look up to, but if you’re too busy or too tired from work to invest time in teaching your children, they will reap what you’ve sown.

I’m A Christian, But I Leave My Christianity At Church

Dare I take this election lightly. Would I lodge this High Calling beneath my bed like a box of old goods, never to be utilized again?

But you are his chosen people, the King’s priests. You are a holy nation, people who belong to God. He chose you to tell about the wonderful things he has done. He brought you out of the darkness of sin into his wonderful light. (1 Peter 2:9 ERV)

How can I so spit upon the loving mercy and lavish grace of my Lord, whose greatest desire is to conform me to the image of His Son? How can I selfishly resist this transforming process from glory to glory, and refuse to share His love and grace with others?

Do I seize His forgiveness and—like Smeagol and the ring of power—horde this precious gift for my self and never share it? Or is this the second greatest call of my election—to preach the gospel?

Our King treaded the earth, likely with blistering feet, many times hungry and in great thirst so that the gospel of His saving grace may be made known to those in darkness. Every day He answered that call, and out of His mouth came the very words, “For this is why I have come.”

If this relentless preacher of the gospel so lives in us, how can we lack zeal? How can we be bound by fear? How can we bite our tongues?

It is sin.

O, how I pray that whatever darkness is keeping us from passionately proclaiming the truth of our precious Savior is forsaken, is thrown out like the blackened water it is! May the poison of sin be extracted from our hearts that it may no longer pollute the holy blood that has previously cleansed us.

Beloved, you know what sin you hold in your right hand, and I beg of you to release it. Then you will be strengthened from on High, revived by the flames of Love Himself, that you may go out and be a blazing beacon of the very Truth that has set you free. If you are in Christ yet enslaved to sin, it is only because you are choosing to be. And if you love your sin more than you love our Savior, is His Holy Spirit truly still in you?

If you love sin, how can He who hates it truly dwell in you?

Repent and be renewed as King David was resurrected from the death His sin brought upon him. Turn aside from your sin and cry out to Jesus. He will deliver all who call on His name. And you will walk in the greatest callings: conformity to Jesus Christ, and bringing the good news of salvation to others; becoming holy and worthy of the call, and rescuing souls from eternal darkness. There is no greater cause than these.

May you be made whole, and may we meet in the new city of our King in the next life.

Much love,

Natasha