November 8, 2016

God’s Woman Part 03

photo-1445295029071-5151176738d0She comforts, encourages, and does him only good as long as there is life within her. 

This is such an interesting mission statement for a woman to study. Within each one of us God has placed the nurturing spirit and our hearts long to see our families prosper and be blessed, healthy and happy. The key to seeing this become a reality lies within us and what we do and say.

 

It comes so naturally when we think of our children and we will defend our children and fight for them and sacrifice for them so easily. But the Lord is talking about our husbands here because He knows our tendency can be to ignore these things when it comes to our husbands as we put the children first and focus totally on them and our husbands get lost in the clamor of the needs of our children. One of the lines struck me from the movie ” My Big, Fat Greek Wedding 2″ was “Remember you were first a girlfriend and a wife before you were a mother”

 

As much as we need to focus on our children as they are growing up and the many needs that they have, we must never lose focus on the reason we are a mother, and that is beacause we have a husband first. How we treat our husbands will have a very great impact on our children and will contribute to their success as adults later on. The Word gives us the keys to a godly life, marriage and family.

 

Three things are essential: comfort, encouragement and doing him good! Be his safe place to share his heart, his dreams and his frustrations with. Just listen, don’t try to point out the pitfalls or the negatives you can imagine, be there for him to bounce his ideas off. We as women can kill a mans dreams quicker than anything. We want him to be our strength, our provider, our protection and then we proceed to criticize his ideas, tell him how stupid his dreams are and throw him back to the ground by pointing out all the things he has not done that we want him to. We will never change him to be what we want him to be, even if we do we will not like the result. We fell in love with him just like he was, mainly because he was so different to us and now we want him to be just like us? Crazy but true!

 

If there are things that drive you crazy talk to the Lord about them don’t try and nag him into changing. God made him and knows how to convince him much better and more effectively than we do so let’s allow the Lord to fashion our husbands after His image not ours. We need all those differences to fill up our weaknesses anyway.

 

Doing him good all our lives is spelled out in the next verses.

She seeks out wool and flax and works with willing hands [to develop it]. She is like the merchant ships loaded with foodstuffs; she brings her household’s food from a far [country]. 

 

A godly woman is a very creative, effective bountiful bless or of her family. Nothing fazes her as she looks to the needs of her household. She knows where to get the best she can and seeks ways to bring things into the family from different places. Whatever she has she knows how to work with it making it the best for her family and she willingly multiplies and develops whatever has been provided.

 

 

She rises while it is yet night and gets [spiritual] food for her household and assigns her maids their tasks.  

She is a woman who is organized and knows what is needed from everyone and prepares ahead so that confusion and lack of direction or clarity is not part of her families experience. She has vision and knows what needs to be done. She is a good planner and organizer of the things that need to be done for the members of her family.

 

The other thing she does is seek the Lord in prayer for her family so that she has a word in season for every member of her family. She speaks with loving wisdom and truth having committed the new day and all it holds to the Lord for each of her family members. She rises while it is yet night, through the hard times she does not collapse but continues to seek the Lord for His life and answers for her family and what they are facing. She intercedes for them even before they have encountered the day. She is also ahead of the issues they are going to face because she has prayed before the day has even begun. God has given us the ability to discern enemy plans ahead of time and to pray before the situation arrives and gets overwhelming. Even in the rough times a godly woman will fight first on her knees in prayer before she tackles the day and the problems that occur.

 

– Lindsey Lefebure

October 25, 2016

God’s Woman Part 02

wodA Godly woman is the most beautiful person to be with. I remember, many years ago when I was still at school and I was searching for the Lord, I became aware of two girls who I used to watch whenever I was near them. As far as I was concerned these girls were two of the most beautiful girls I had ever seen. I had given my heart and life to the Lord Jesus at a very large Crusade but had not been discipled and had not had much growth as a baby Christian.

So when they approached me and invited me to a Christian meeting I went with no hesitation. I was amazed that these two stunning girls would want me with them.

 

As soon as I began attending the meetings I was caught up with someone who was even more incredibly beautiful and that was the Lord and the person of the Holy Spirit. I began to understand the beauty that I had been drawn to in these girls, was the light of God shining out of these girls who were filled with the Spirit of the Lord. They lead me into a fabulously fulfilling and passionate relationship with the Lord that has been my life ever since.

 

The heart of her husband trusts in her confidently and relies on and believes in her securely, so that he has no lack of [honest] gain or need of [dishonest] spoil. She comforts, encourages, and does him only good as long as there is life within her. (Proverbs 31:11 – 12 AMP)

 

This passage of scripture describes what I experienced in these two girls. The life that was in them was truly eternal and had the power to bring a trust in me that I knew that what they had I wanted. When we allow the Lord to shine in and through us we too will be a woman who can be trusted and who will do good all the days of our lives.

 

In this day when divorce is so rife and many are not even getting married because of the change in moral values, away from the Biblical standard, God still has the answer – a godly woman! One whose focus is the Lord and His life inside of her. Advertising keeps telling us that we need a certain cream,  a certain dress, specific hair products or jewelry in order to be successful. We feel we need to look a certain way, or have the same phone or standard of living in order to be successful.

 

The secret however is actually none of the above or any other thing the world can offer, the secret is the presence of the Lord in our lives. No one can resist the drawing power of the life the Holy Spirit brings into a life filled with the Lord. This is what makes marriages great, what makes relationships successful and what raises secure, confident children. Why? Because the heart of her husband and children and others around her can trust in her, they know she is not only a safe place for them but she is the strength behind them.

When there is a godly wife, the husband can conquer the world he faces every day. He has the courage to be strong and daring in his exploits because he comes home to the one who prays for him, believes in him, encourages him and builds him up to go out and win the next battle or overcome the next challenge. He has the confidence to tackle new things and find the place of victory he was created to stand in.

 

Children too are foundationed for life when their mom is a godly woman, fighting for them on her knees. This world seeks every possible way to keep our children from knowing the Lord and the power of His might and the life that only comes from His presence. We need to vibrantly and passionately build our relationship with a Him so that we can confidently stand when all else shouts for the attention of our family and fragrance the lives of our husband, children and all we come into contact with, with the fragrance of the knowledge of Christ.

 

A godly woman is one who can be trusted to bring truth into perspective when all hell breaks loose around us.

Stand strong in the Lord and His anointing and life in you. You will need the power and peace that comes from a deep relationship with the living God as you stand vastly different to the voices and examples and ideas that call out for the attention of your loved ones but be encouraged because the Lord always works with, in and through us to bring His purposes to pass. A godly woman is a powerful woman with the full force of God’s love flowing through her speech, her actions, her faith and her life. Never give up!

 

Keep listening carefully to the voice and directions of the Holy Spirit and let the Lord use you mightily for good all the days of your life. A godly woman, who can find her? Our families can because we are her!

-Lindsey Lefebure

October 18, 2016

Choose To Believe

photo-1455637190771-c5769e8b34ec

Now when He rose early on the first day of the week, He appeared first to Mary Magdalene, out of whom He had cast seven demons. She went and told those who had been with Him, as they mourned and wept. And when they heard that He was alive and had been seen by her, they did not believe’.   Mark 16:9-11

This scripture has always astounded me. Jesus told the disciples over and over again that He was going to be crucified and rise again and to think that the disciples who walked closely with Jesus, and were taught by Him, still did not believe.

 

We are called ‘believers’ because we believe in Jesus Christ. We entered into a relationship with God through believing in Jesus, but that was only the beginning. When we follow the Lord, we live with a growing faith in that we learn to believe and trust God for bigger things, things that we would never have thought of in our early Christian days.

 

 

Is there then a difference between faith and believing?  In the bible, faith and believing are used interchangeably. Faith is that which comes from our spirit, it is a gift from God. Believing is a choice and it takes place within our soul (our mind, will and emotions). Believing is to choose to believe mentally or to agree with God and this unleashes the faith in God.

 

If we reflect on the above scripture, can we relate it to our lives? Are there times when we too do not believe? We can have faith in God, but maybe don’t believe that all of His promises are for us and that He will do what He says He will do? There are times that our unbelief can be a hindrance to our spiritual growth because we don’t make the choice to believe God and His Word above the challenge or the circumstance that we are faced with.    Instead of believing in God and His greatness, we look at our circumstances and believe that to be greater than God’s ability to work in that situation.

 

There are certain things that we as ‘believers’ need to settle within our minds and choose to believe no matter what our circumstance. I have narrowed it down to three beliefs and significant truths:

The first is, we have to believe that God is a good Father.    Psalm 145:9 says ‘The Lord is good to all and His mercy is over all that He has made’ and Psalm 100:5 says, ‘For the Lord is good.  His unfailing love continues forever, and His faithfulness continues to each generation’.   We can depend on the unchanging goodness of God.  God will always be good. His character does not change. He will continue to be the creator of all things good and we can be confident He will provide good things for us according to His perfect plan. The Goodness of God is the core of our Christian faith. It is because of His desire for our good that He provided salvation through His Son. Everything God does is for our good.

 

James 1.17 says ‘whatever is good and perfect is a gift from God our Father’.    That then means whatever is bad is not from God but from the enemy.      One of the enemy’s favourite schemes is to send something bad into a person’s life and blame it on God. If he can get people to believe it is from the Lord, he has an easier time convincing them of his next lie, that God has failed or deserted them. He follows this up with a further lie, ‘why go on serving a God who does these kinds of things to you?’  His real target is to destroy your faith in God and make you believe that God is not a good God.

 

 

The second key belief is twofold, we have to believe that God is true to His Word and that every promise in His Word is for us to receive and walk in.    God is not a liar (Numbers 23:19). He will never say something in His Word and then not fulfil it. We have to believe that whatever God instructs us to do in His Word, we can accomplish it in Him, no matter how difficult it may seem. If God tells us to forgive someone who has deeply hurt us, we need to believe that in Him we can forgive, knowing that He first forgave us, God will grant us the grace and the strength to be able to forgive and He will do the rest by removing the hurt and the pain from us.

 

 

The third key belief is that God can change anyone and any circumstance.    When it comes to the difficult people in our lives, be it a family member, spouse, child or boss, we must resist looking at them with the natural eye or at the other person’s ability to change themselves. If we do that, our focus shifts from what God can do in that person to relying on that person changing themselves, and discouragement sets in. We then stop praying for them and we stop believing that God can change their hearts.    Before we decide to give up on someone, we need to ask God if He has given up on them and remind ourselves of His word in Ezekiel 36:26 ‘And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you.   I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender responsive heart.’

 

We have to believe that whatever circumstance or challenge we are currently faced with God can change it according to His will. He will take us through the challenge.

The challenging circumstance you are faced with now is a reality, there is no denying that, but we need to remember that not all reality is truth.   We need to know what God’s truth is and choose to believe that over the reality.      It’s in the difficult times that we need to remind ourselves of who God really is – our Saviour, our creator, our hope, our deliver, our healer, our provider, our strength, our joy and choose to believe that nothing is impossible or too difficult for God to do.

 

Sometimes we lose our belief because we ask God for something and we don’t receive it or we don’t see the prayer being answered.  But have you ever thought that maybe God didn’t want you to have it because He had something better ready for you? Or He knew that what you were actually asking for or praying for, would not have been for your good?

 

Life is so wonderful when you can come to the point where in every situation you can proclaim and testify to God’s goodness and His faithfulness.          You just know that if you don’t receive all that you were believing God for or praying for, that God is still good and He has something greater in plan for you.

 

What are you believing God for in your life? Maybe it’s something in your marriage, or your spouse or spouse to be, or for your children or your health or finances? I want to encourage you to make a quality decision to believe God no matter what the circumstance. Read His Word, find out what His promises are for you and then start to truly believe them.

God will always do what He says…you just have to believe.

 

-Leigh De Freitas

October 12, 2016

Running On Empty

A photo by Jacob Ufkes. unsplash.com/photos/DOkB4WP4j9kThe Lord is my strength and shield.

  I trust him with all my heart.

He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy.

    I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.     Psalm 28:7

 

I don’t know about you but sometimes life gets so busy and I am always up and about doing things that I get into these weird spaces where I just feel like I am out of fuel. I literally feel like I am running on empty. I suddenly am sitting here thinking about how much I have to do but have no will or desire to do it. Do you get that?

 

It’s such a horrible space to get into because then you get lazy and so on, and it’s not exactly your fault, its just that you’re feeling drained. I came across this verse recently. I was actually just feeling so tired and “out of it” and I googled (yes I used google to find this verse) verses about God being our strength. Well I have to say, google isn’t so bad because what a verse!

The Lord is my strength and shield .. Okay so let’s just break it down. The Lord is my strength. So when you are weak, drained or tired, God steps in an becomes your strength. I mean WOW! I know it’s probably something you have read a million times and know, but can we just take a second to realise that the Lord our God sees us falling a part and steps in. That’s real love.

So He becomes our strength when we just can’t do it anymore. His strength flows through us and becomes our own.

 

Then the next part is “and shield”. So ‘The Lord is my strength and shield’, that means He gives us His strength and protects us. A shield is used to protect a soldier in battle, so He becomes our protection in battle. So when we are feeling tired and drained, He gives us the strength to keep going and protects us from anything that may hurt us.

This verse just makes me feel a lot better just knowing that its okay if I am weak, because He will become my strength and protect me against my opposition. I can feel reassured that when I am feeling like I am running on empty that God is there to fill me with what I need.

 

It’s really encouraging that you can just go to the Bible and God speaks to you through what you read. He knows exactly what you need to hear and know, and so He gives you revelation and understanding of something you may have read before, but now all of a sudden it is relevant and speaks straight to your inner being.

 

I am sure I have seen that verse before, or atleast read a verse that tells me God is my strength and shield, and thats great, because I then knew He was. But now when I am “running on empty” He brings that verse back to me and shows me that He will be my strength when life gets a bit rough.

What an awesome God we serve.

-Kelly Hardouin

October 4, 2016

God’s Woman

3wahuaqxrscumiuyzarw_img_3379In the next few blogs we will look at Proverbs 31:10-31. This can be a frightening scripture for women but God never meant it to be unattainable, He meant it as an encouragement to the potential He has created within a woman.

A capable, intelligent, and virtuous woman–who is he who can find her? She is far more precious than jewels and her value is far above rubies or pearls. Prov. 31:10 

 

The opening verse of God’s thoughts about woman is amazing. He begins with 3 incredible aspects that make up His design in women.

Capable – Able to do anything she puts her heart and mind to. Purpose and passion go together, whether at home, work, relationships or ministry. God has placed capability within a woman. Don’t allow anyone especially the enemy tell you that you cannot do it. God says you can because you are capable! What are the needs of the situation, what are your desires, what do you wish you could do if only you had the ability? Write them down at the back of your journal and then set about releasing them into the hands of the Lord for Him to connect you with the capability within you, to dream and do what is in line with His plans and purposes for your life.

 

So often we want to do things better than someone else and so we won’t try unless we believe we will be the best. Wrong focus! We are not here to compete with others we are here to be the best us we can possibly be. If you want to sing then sing! In the shower, to your children, in your car. You don’t have to be able to sing like Sinach, that is her gift, but you can create songs that bless your children and put a smile on the heart of God because they come from the capability within you and the passion you have in your heart. Create words and tunes that are uniquely you. Don’t worry about what others think it is not for them but for you and the joy of the Lord.

 

What about those things we know we ought to do but we don’t have the confidence to do them, like cooking or baking or the household budget? Well if God calls you capable then you must be able, it may take some study, or practice or trials and a few flops but take heart, don’t give up, try and try again believing in the ability that God can release in and through you. Find your unique style and ability and then thrive!

 

We are equal to anything that we need to tackle and face through our lives. God calls you capable therefore you are. Keep believing and surrendering to the truth of His Word about yourself.

The next two words are equally encouraging for a woman of destiny – intelligent and virtuous. What amazing declarations God has made of you. He calls you intelligent, He is not focusing on the marks on your report card. He is focusing on the power He placed within your mind to think and evaluate and decide on what is important for each step and phase of your life. James tells us that if anyone lacks wisdom let him or her ask God who gives liberally. So when we face a situation that challenges our minds let’s remember that with Him we can do all things and if He calls us intelligent then we are!

 

Virtuous deals with our character. Someone who is full of integrity and great attitude. One who is able to make wonderful choices that bless others and cause situations to work out for good. A virtuous woman can be trusted and will always be the example for others to follow. God says you have that capability, so don’t shy away or hold back from getting involved. Let God use you to bring His love into focus in every situation you come across. You are the virtuous one in whom people can place their trust.

 

These are the attributes of a Godly woman who has a worth far above rubies. So often what the majority of people seek are the popular ones, the ones who seem to have all the talent or the ones who are in the limelight all the time, but these are not the only ones who have a real worth. Look with God’s eyes, not the world’s eyes and see yourself the way He does because your worth will be far above rubies, pearls or jewels, and we know how valuable those are! The Lord says who can find someone like that? He means for us to look and find that incredible woman He has created, allow Him to show you the fullness of the value that He has placed within you, find your true self and believe that you really are “ALL THAT”.

 

-Lindsey Lefebure