LIVING BY THE SPIRIT

Posted by izonprize


http://www.pb.org/pbdocs/works.html

This is a very well written article.  After taking it to heart (not as to salvation, which we have received already by grace alone), but as to living out the Christian life now, as pertains to whatever besetting sin or struggle or trial we face.  As Paul said, in Galatians 3:1-3, Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh?
Believing faith is an assent of the mind to the truth of what is declared by another and if mixed with any act of our own, nullifies faith alone.  It is an assent of the mind, a change of thought.
As the article states, can a DEAD MAN do ANYTHING or ANY ACT to receive life? No.
Even the free gift of eternal life is not something a dead person can tangibly open.  It is just to be received by mental assent.  When you are dead, you can't move.  You can't act. 
It is trusting totally in another to do the opening for you.  To pour the gift of eternal life into the new heart that God provides to the person.  It is all from God.  Our mind, thoughts, turn to truth, trust, belief, faith as a mental assent.  God does ALL the action.  When we move to do ANYTHING in an ACTION, we have removed the all of grace clause from the Scripture Ephesians 2:8-9 For you have been saved by grace, through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.  A dead person (dead in their sins) cannot move at all.  He is dead.  Period.  Does this mean that after salvation a man will not "work" or "act" on his mental assent? No.  In fact, once alive, he can't help but move and act and work.  It will be in his new nature to do so.  But, that body does not move or act or work from flesh, because the flesh is still dead.  IT is the SPIRIT that lives and acts and works and moves in the new creature.  Any act, work, activity done in the flesh is not a work of the spirit.  The flesh meaning the mind that is not renewed (Romans 12:1-2 I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.  Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect).  When I received the work of Christ on the cross, it was a mental assent.  I did no work at all.  I mentally agreed with Ephesians 2:8-9.  I was DEAD.  My mind was alive.  We are eternal creatures.  When I had a near-death experience in a hospital in Anchorage in 1991, I had absolutely no feeling in my flesh or body.  But my mind was still thinking and praying.  Although my mind was alive, my body was dead.  This is the same with salvation.  We consider our flesh as dead but our mind can still think.  We mentally agree, assent, believe, trust, have faith, that what Christ did, His work, was totally sufficient.  When I was near-death, my body could do NOTHING to move itself to life.  Only Christ could bring me to life again.  As I mentally prayed, and believed, He quickened me back to life in my mortal body.  It was all His action and none of my own.  I just mentally agreed with Him that I can do nothing and He would need to do all.  That was it.  After salvation, now I must live in the same way. (Romans 7:4-6 Likewise, my brothers, you also have died to the law through the body of Christ, so that you may belong to another, to Him who has been raised from the dead, in order that we may bear fruit for God.  For while we were living in the flesh, our sinful passions, aroused by the law, were at work in our members to bear fruit for death.  But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code.) Mentally assenting that I, in my flesh, in my own strength, can do nothing.  He must increase, but I must decrease (John 3:30).  As He increases, I live, I move, I act, but it is not me.  It is Him in me moving, acting, living. Ezekiel 36:25-27  I pray your mind clicks like mine has in this way.  It is such freedom.  Jesus said, Greater works will you do than these (that I have done in your presence), because I go to the Father and will send back the Holy Spirit to live within each of you.  It is not by might, nor by power nor by any act of my own flesh, but by the SPIRIT of the living God that lives within us that does life through us.  God bless you.

LEEANNA'S OATMEAL APPLE-BANANA POP COOKIES

Posted by izonprize

LEEANNA'S OATMEAL APPLE-BANANA POP COOKIES

1 Cup Pamela's Wheat-free, Gluten-free flour (Made from rice flour;
The baking powder and baking soda are already in the mix)
1 1/2 C. Rolled Oats
1/2 C. Powdered Sweet Smart Xylitol
1/3 C. Egg Whites (2 Large Egg Whites)
1/2 C. Mashed, Ripe Banana
1/2 C. Baked Apple (1/2 Large Apple baked with 1/2 teaspoon xylitol & cinnamon)
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon Cocoa Chili Blend Seasoning

Mix well with wooden spoon. Drop by teaspoonfuls onto cookie sheet sprayed lightly with Smart Balance Omega Cooking Spray. Bake at 375 degrees for 15 minutes. Makes 24 cookies.

Each Cookie contains: 54 Calories, less than 1 gr. fat, 56 mg sodium
Each Serving (4 cookies) 1/4 cup Oatmeal per serving:
216 Calories, less than 2.25 gr. fat, 224 mg sodium

IS THERE ANY HOPE IN THIS LIFE?

Posted by izonprize

If we trust only in this life, what a hopeless existence...BUT, there is hope!
These are not my words, but God's words.

Matthew 7:21" Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.
Exodus 3:14 God said to Moses, " I AM WHO I AM"; and He said, "Thus you shall say to the sons of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you.'"
John 8:58 Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I AM."
John 10:30 (Jesus Said) I and the Father are one."
John 8:24 "Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I AM (He, God), you will die in your sins." (Jesus speaking)
John 14:6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.
John 17:3"This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

Jesus is God, who became a Man, so that He could be the substitute for our punishment. For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God and the penalty of sin is death. Jesus paid our sin debt. He became our nearest blood relative in order to die in our place. God's spirit did not die on the cross because the spirit never dies. Jesus died bodily on the cross. Only those who put their trust and belief in His work on the cross can be saved from the penalty of sin.

John 1
The Word Became Flesh (If you look carefully at this passage and make a list of everything you learn about the Word, you will discover that The Word was God (vs.1) and the Word was Jesus (vss.14 and 18).
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome[a] it.
6 There was a man sent from God whose name was John. 7He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all might believe. 8 He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light.
9 The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.
14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
15 (John testified concerning him. He cried out, saying, “This is the one I spoke about when I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’”) 16 Out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God, but the one and only Son, who is himself God and[b] is in closest relationship with the Father, has made him known.

NOW:

John 11:25 Jesus said to her, " I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies,
Acts 16:30-31 He then 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—you and your household.”
John 9:38 And he said, "Lord, I believe." And he worshiped Him.

Definition of Believe: Be`lieve´
v. t. 1. To exercise belief in; to credit upon the authority or testimony of another; to be persuaded of the truth of, upon evidence furnished by reasons, arguments, and deductions of the mind, or by circumstances other than personal knowledge; to regard or accept as true; to place confidence in; to think; to consider; as, to believe a person, a statement, or a doctrine.

I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
- Acts viii. 37.
v. i. 1. To have a firm persuasion, esp. of the truths of religion; to have a persuasion approaching to certainty; to exercise belief or faith.
Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.
- Mark ix. 24.
With the heart man believeth unto righteousness.


Praise to God for a Living Hope

1 Peter 1:3-5 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.

CADBURY CREME EGGS

Posted by izonprize

Well, as some of your know, I love Cadbury Creme Eggs. I only buy them at Easter time, because, well, that is the only time the stores carry them. Lately, they are carrying them earlier and earlier in the season. Some of you know my recent, humbling experience with the eggs. About 2 months ago I bought 6 of the little sweet things and put them in my freezer. First of all, why are they carrying Easter eggs in January???? Anyway, by the 3rd day, all of them were gone except for one or two. I can't remember the number--that doesn't really matter, does it? I had asked a dear SP friend of mine if I should throw the last one away or keep it to practice self-control. She asked me, "Does an alcoholic keep wine in the house to practice self-control or "just in case"?" I thought to myself, hummm, in MY case, I would keep it around "just in case". YUCK!!!! What a revelation. I got so disgusted with myself for eating so many in such a short period of time, AND knowing that I really wanted to keep that last one around "just in case", that I threw the remainder in the garbage with a fury. I said, "THERE! You go to the trash". I thought I had seen the last of that CCE. BUT, by the end of the night, (remember I am humbling myself here), I couldn't stand it and dug out the grocery bag which the last CCE was tied up in, from the trash and ATE IT. Yes, I did that. I really did that. I can't believe I am telling you my dirty laundry. I pulled the thing out of the trash and ate it. Confession is good for the soul. I learned a LOT about myself that night. I learned that I am definitely not perfect. I learned that all or nothing is not always a good thing. I learned that anything that controls ME is not in my best interest. Soon after this, in February, I had a word from God to me. It was simple but He said, "LOVE IS THE HAND THAT FEEDS YOU". I am not sure why this was so profound to me but it was. Since January, I have passed by the Cadbury Creme Eggs many, many times at the grocery store and said "NO, thank you". It has been relatively easy to do so. I know this is the grace of God. Today, March 21, 2011, I was in HEB food store shopping. I passed down the aisle with the Easter candy, BOLDLY on display. There in flashing NEON lights was the CADBURY CREME EGGS! I glanced in their direction and acknowledged their presence. Then, something rose up within me that very resolutely said, "If God wants me to have a Cadbury Creme Egg, HE will bring me a Cadbury Creme Egg", and I walked past those babies without a second thought. Tonight, just before my group of ladies arrived at my house for Discipleship class, a friend of mine rang the doorbell. It was her and her daughter Samantha with a gift. Her daughter said they had just been shopping at the drugstore and spotted some miniature Cadbury Creme Eggs in a carton. Samantha told her mom, "Hey mom! Ms. Leeanna loves Cadbury Creme Eggs, let's get her some". So they did. And then, Samantha said, "Hey mom, Ms. Leeanna lives just a couple of blocks away, let's go give them to her now!" So, they did. Samantha did not know the story I have just shared with you. She had no idea that I had just two hours before said "If God wants me to have a CCE He will bring me a CCE." I have walked 30 years with God, as of this year. I am still in awe of His many ways of showing me His loveingkindnesses. I am shocked and awed at the way He provided me with the desire of my heart tonight. I am going to bed with a thankful heart and a new appreciation for the "Hand that feeds me". It was worth waiting for, my friends!

2010 REFLECTION

Posted by izonprize

It is good to reflect! (THIS POST WAS DATED JANUARY 2, 2011)

Since January 2008, I am down 6 pant sizes (from a 14 to a 2/4 depending on brand),
and down about 30 lbs.

I am 5'1" so every pound counts a lot.

I have done this naturally without pills or surgery.

On September 7th, my DH and I started the Michael Thurman 6 Week Body Makeover Plan.
He has arrived at his goal weight, which is what he weighed when he was 20 years old!
He looks amazing.

I lost about 17 lbs using this plan. I absolutely love the Michael Thurman way of eating and never once felt deprived.

In the beginning, as with any new eating plan, setting the mind was the hardest part.

I have a few more pounds to go until I start maintenance,
and tomorrow is my re-start day on healthy eating.

I enjoyed the holidays this year like never before and allowed myself to eat what was presented without saying,
"No thanks, I am on a diet"
and then feeling deprived.

This was my 2010 goal and it was a great feeling to see it come to pass.

I have to say, to God be the glory.

My goal for 2011, weight-wise, is to get to goal weight and maintain it.

I also want to learn what it would mean to love myself unconditionally,
and to believe God for greater things according to His promises this year.

In all, I feel it was a successful year for achieving my goals

and I have to thank God for without Him, it would not have been possible.

THE BATTLE AND THE VICTORY

Posted by izonprize

The battle (over temptation, ETC.) belongs to the Lord.

As we acknowledge His presence dwells within us, we are one step closer to true victory.

Looking to Jesus, the Author and the Finisher of our faith, we can believe God who instructs our hearts:
“Be not afraid or dismayed at this great multitude; for the battle is not yours, but God’s”.

His promises are yes and amen.
God always hears us when we pray according to His will.
His will is for us to bring Him glory and to believe and take Him at His word--
Jesus is His Word made flesh.
We have not because we ask not.
We have not because we ask with selfish motives.

If our motive is to glorify God in our bodies, we can have the desire of our hearts.

Worship is the key to minute by minute victory.
God inhabits the praises of His people.
His perfect love casts out ALL fear.
Faith is the opposite of fear.
Fear has no room to operate when our heart and mind is set on Him.

The Angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him
[who revere and worship Him with awe]
and each of them He delivers. ~ Psalm 34:7

Let's use the next 24 hours--minute by minute, to worship Him
and keep our eyes fixed on Jesus-the Author and Finisher of our faith.

Let us not look at the problem, nor even meditate on any negative thing;
but let us only look to and BELIEVE the One who can give us the victory.

It is my prayer tonight that each and every person who reads this blog and desires to experience victory,

WILL have it in Jesus' name.

To God be the glory, great things He has already done--in us, and for us!

WHO ARE YOUR ENEMIES?

Posted by izonprize

Aren't you glad each day is a new day and the old has passed away?

New things are in store for us THIS YEAR.

Nothing is impossible to those who believe.

I am working on memorizing this verse and applying it to my life daily.
I hope you will consider doing the same!


And when they began to sing and praise, the Lord sent ambushments against (their enemies). 2Chronicles 20:22

My enemy is the flesh that is constantly trying to get me to conform to the world, and the devil, with all his empty promises and constant temptations...

Who are your enemies, my friends?
Who or what do you need the Lord to defeat for you?

God is not a man that He would lie to us.

Every man is a liar, but God is not.

God will perform His Word towards us.

He is faithful to keep His Word.

He said if we do our part (sing and praise), He will do His part,
send ambushments against our enemies!

Let's try Him at His Word over the next 24 hours and see what happens...what do we have to lose?

EXPERIENCING TRIALS....AM I BITTER OR SWEET?

Posted by izonprize

I praise you God, first of all, because YOU are always with us--you NEVER leave us or forsake us.

You are a good GOD; You are Love; You are kind!

I am full of praise just knowing that there is nothing that will happen to me or the ones I love today,
or any other day,
that does not first have to pass your inspection
and your permission.

You use everything,
both bad and good,
to draw us closer to you.

I praise you that you gave us the book of Job as a confirmation
that bad things only happen to us
to draw us into a right eternal relationship with YOU;
because when this life is over and done,
relationship with You is all that will really count.

You have taught me, through Job, to see trials differently.

I love how, at the end of his great trial,
Job said "I admit I once lived by rumors of You; now I have it all firsthand--from my own eyes and ears!"

In otherwords, Job's trials took him from head knowledge about you, God,
to heart knowledge
leading to personal relationship.

LORD GOD! I praise you for all the good AND bad things that have come into my life,
because every last one of them have shown me something new about You
and strengthened our love-relationship!

I love you Father! I will praise and worship You forever! Amen.

WRITE IT DOWN--MAKE IT PLAIN

Posted by izonprize

Hab 2:1 I will climb my watchtower and wait to see what the LORD will tell me to say and what answer he will give to my complaint.
Hab 2:2 The LORD gave me this answer: "Write down clearly on tablets what I reveal to you, so that it can be read at a glance.
Hab 2:3 Put it in writing, because it is not yet time for it to come true. But the time is coming quickly, and what I show you will come true. It may seem slow in coming, but wait for it; it will certainly take place, and it will not be delayed.

What God seems to be saying to my heart through this passage,
is to listen to what He has to say and then write it down...
Write down my vision.

Make my plans (from Him) plain on paper.

Believe what He is showing me WILL COME TO PASS.

It may seem like it will never happen, but it certainly will take place.

So, I am going to write down my goals

and make a list of my God-given hopes and dreams.

Will you do it too?

MY BODY, GOD'S TEMPLE

Posted by izonprize

Jesus is Immanuel, Word of God, made flesh,
and who Tabernacled among us.

We beheld His Glory; like Father, Like Son.

God dwelling with us in the Divine tabernacle of His Body; revealed the fullness of God.

He explained the Father. Jesus, in us, is God, The Cloud, The Glory, The Shekinah Glory, dwelling within us!

We are His Temple; His Cloud, His fire, is in us!

Oh God, help us to comprehend this awesomeness! Help us to behold and sense This Power, and to live as though YOU dwell and Tabernacle within us!

Oh LORD, allow us to behold your Manifest Presence and visibly see you, even as Israel saw you in Exodus, on the Mountain of God, and in the Temple.

LORD let us visibly see you and feel your power within. May we glorify you in these temples of flesh and KNOW what a treasure we contain in these "arks of flesh", containers of the Living God!

What a mystery...

what a privilege...

what a responsibility!

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength!

WHAT THANKFULNESS ACCOMPLISHES

Posted by izonprize

For me, the scale stayed stuck on 131 today, for my Monday Weigh In. I think I have been at this number (except for one day at 129.5) for 8 days straight. I have to admit, I started to fret, but then just decided, I am not getting down about it. I prayed this morning and believe I got the answer for what to do next. I have not been as thankful as I should have been in being in the 130's. This was a long time coming for me, and then to be able to lose 13 plus lbs in 33 days, is totally amazing to me. I know it wasn't all my own "hard work" and "committment" - I needed God's help and knew it. One of the reasons for the scale being stuck for past 8 days, I believe (personal conviction--not put on anyone else LOL), is, I hadn't given God the rightful place and glory for what has been accomplished (my intent is not to sound religious or offend anyone--I am just being the authentic me here). I am very thankful today for even being in the 130's. Thankful hearts are more at peace and peace will be more fruitful than anxiety ever could. I believe this will move the scale by next Monday. I am not changing any other thing--just being thankful and giving God glory for what He has accomplished in me SO FAST. I have to remember that it wasn't just me, being committed, because I have been there and done that and it never really worked long term for me. it was Him in me, doing it through me. I am very thankful today and just needed to say so.

UPDATE:Well, if you read my blog yesterday, you saw that I had been stuck on 131 for about 8 days. After praying, I felt convicted that I needed to be thankful for even being in the 130's at all, and also that I need to give credit where credit it due for this weight loss accomplishment. I know myself too well to ever think I could do this on my own. So, I made a decision not to change anything at all in my plan, EXCEPT to be more thankful and to give God the glory for it all. Today, when I stepped on the scale, it had moved down one pound! Again, I am not proud or patting myself on the back at all. I am just plain THANKFUL to God. I knew when I started this journey that it wasn't all about the weight loss but about what I would learn about myself and my faith, along the way. It has been a great journey and I wouldn't trade the things I have learned for anything in the world. I am even thankful that I had all this weight to lose, so that I could learn all these valuable lessons, and grow closer to God through it all.

UPDATE: 1/31/11 at 127 today and feeling especially Thankful!

A CHRISTIAN DIETER'S PERSPECTIVE

Posted by izonprize

You are beautiful creations of the Living God. He made you each for His own glory and praise. I know the enemy would love to torment you with condemning thoughts and keep your mind set on negative things. But, because you have been very honest with your feelings, he can now show you what to do next. First, turn your hearts towards "home" to Jesus who lives and dwells inside of you. If you are a believer, He is the only one who can do this weight loss thing in you. I just was up last night spending time with Him and in His Word and He spoke this very thing to me.

APART FROM HIM, WE CAN DO NOTHING. NOTHING....NOTHING. That means, NOTHING that will bear fruit that will last for Him. Every good thing we do without Him will one day burn up and not be counted in God's books. Now, some of you know what I mean here, and others may be confused or disagree. Can we lose weight without God's help? Probably. But is that the way you want to do this? I don't. I want God to get all the glory for everything I accomplish, even losing weight.

The frustration comes when we think WE must DO something in and of ourselves. WE CAN'T. Not anymore. Not since we are born again. It is not possible. We can't even pray this way: "LORD HELP US!..." Not really. Because that is saying WE are doing something and want Him to just "help us" achieve "our plans" and "our goals", instead of realizing the best way is to realize it is HIM, in us, DOING it.

This is really deep thinking, I know, and I am still pondering it all myself. But I, for one, intend to meditate on this truth He gave me last night. ABIDE in HIM and he will abide in me. To allow HIM to choose my food for me today. To allow Him to be in control and NOT me or my flesh or my choosing or my decisions, because I will always choose wrong, for the most part, because I am selfish in and of myself and I usually want to pet and stroke my flesh and feed it what it is crying out for. BUT, the Spirit of God inside of me is calling out to me to surrender to His will--to allow HIM to choose for me. This is a mindset and we have to approach it spiritually. This will only be won on the spiritual field. We cannot win this battle in our flesh or in our own minds or by our own strength. The world can--WE CANNOT. We play by different rules now. This is the love of the Father towards us--He is disciplining us and and He is loving us by teaching us to ABIDE in Him and allow HIM to choose our food (taking the time to ask HIM before I reach for anything to eat).

I, for one, am going to practice this teaching He gave me today. I will report back. And remember this, it doesn't matter if someone weighs 320 or 120 lbs, as Christians, we are ALL accountable to live by the spirit and give the flesh no provision to lead us. I love you all and I pray that this makes sense and you can grab a hold of SOME part of this teaching of the Holy Spirit and run with it TODAY. Today is a new day.

Lord, Jesus, fill my friends and myself, with the POWER of your HOLY SPIRIT today. Fill us completely so that there is no provision or room for the flesh to rule or reign in our bodies. Fill our hearts and minds with the POWER of your Holy Spirit. We submit ourselves body, soul, and spirit to YOUR LEAD and YOUR DECISION for what we eat and drink today, and what words come out of our mouths. We want to glorify you in and with our bodies TODAY. Lord, you only promise us this day. Tomorrow is not promised to any of us. We commit ourselves to be in submission to your HOLY SPIRIT of promise, this day. We set our minds on you. We command our flesh to be quiet and submit today. This day is your day, Lord Jesus. We will glorify you with our bodies today. Amen!

There was an error in this gadget