Devotional 12/3

And whosoever does not bear his cross, and come after me, cannot be my disciple. Luke‬ ‭14:27‬ ‭

God has a purpose! The momentary pain does not let us see the purpose, but with time we will notice.

The Lord requires one thing from us, and this one thing is obedience. He says if you love me, obey my commands. He tells us to do a whole lot of things in the word: be holy as I am holy, love those who hate you, put on love, put off wrath, follow me, place your faith in me, turn from your wicked ways, put away your old self, renew your mind, grow into maturity, etc. God is not a dictator, He simply offers us a million ways to show Him that we love HIM more than we love ourselves.

Our Lord is always in control, causing and preventing things from happening. Its easy to think that if God wants us to be faithful He will clear our paths from temptation or that He will change our carnal nature like magic. But the word says that we are called to suffer for Christ! In Luke 14, Jesus told the people that there were requirements to be one of His disciples.

Remember in Gethsemane? The Lord Jesus was in the flesh, and His flesh wanted to skip the part when He would be separated from His father for the first time in all eternity. He had to carry His cross, and in that moment exchange His flesh’s will, for the Father’s will. He stepped down from glory to become one of us, to be under-appreciated, and humiliated: to be a human being, and carry the burden of our iniquities, transgressions and rebellions to Calvary. The Lord carried a cross for you and for me, and He expects us to do the same. Choosing God’s ways and following after His will instead of our own, HURTS!

What comes to mind when Jesus tells you to carry your cross?

  • Could it be staying in a marriage that went sour?
  • Could it be ending ungodly relationships?
  • Could it be raising an autistic child? A rebellious child? Someone else’s child!?
  • Could it be a disease you have been expecting to heal?
  • Could it be living where you do?
  • Could it be working a 9-5?

Being obedient to God depends on faith: you act according to what you believe! For instance, if you believe in your heart or mind: that your flesh makes you happy, blesses you or resolves your problems… then you will disobey God, and honor your flesh. But if you believe that God has the power to resolve your issues, to bless you or to make you happy… then you will choose to honor God. We all battle with our flesh, our hearts and minds but can you confidently say that you are a disciple of Christ?

Remember, the cross we carry will crucify our flesh and therefore bring glory to God. Carrying your cross shows those around you, that God is worth the sacrifice: even when it hurts!

Let’s pray:

Father God, Lord Jesus we ask you today to help us rebuild the walls of our faith. Help us pick up our cross, and walk after you. Help us to carry it even if it’s heavy, even if it hurts and even if it’s tiresome. May you send Simeon’s who help us carry our crosses in each season. Help us to see the beauty of exchanging our will for yours. In Jesus name, Amen.

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Devotional 7/21

Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit. Psalm 147:5

You’re future isn’t written it’s designed

Thank you Lord God for being the Lord almighty, the lord of hosts, the Most High God, the Great I am, the balm of Gilead. I praise you for who you are and for your wonderful works. You are the everlasting father who deals with us so wonderfully. May your name be exalted over all the earth. I’m grateful to know you, and for your word; you are our refuge and strength.

I lift up praises to youMy God and savior. Only you know the end from the beginning, and only you sit on the throne lifted high. You are all knowing and majestic and nothing occurs without your sovereignty and providence being involved. I thank you for the privilege of serving the Lord of Lorda and creator of the heavens and stars, the author of all creation.

May our paths be cleared of any stumbling blocks and may we not be such for others. You said that you would come closer to those who draw closer to you, and I pray you draw us closer to you. And may we bring others closer to you, by our character, words and actions.

May our spiritual senses be activated to know your ways and walk in your providence.

I pray for those who desire to walk according to your precepts, may we be filled with grace to be obedient in love. I pray for shifts in our lives, including for those who are on the verge of receiving you into their hearts and those who are tempted to walk away from the faith and servanthood. I pray you heal the hearts of both, bring deliverance from the influence of the powers of darkness.

I also pray for those in relationships. May you fill us with grace to love, understand, compromise and respect one another. May you continue transforming our hearts and minds according to your will. May our relationships bring others to your feet as we glorify you. And those who wait on you do so with faith, and hope understanding you have a good plan for their lives. In Jesus name, Amen.

Devotional 6/22

Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? Psalms‬ ‭139:7‬ ‭

I’m honest with my conversations with Him, because I know He can handle it. Lysa Terkeheurst

Lord God, we come before you recognizing that you are God and you are One. You are the true and living God, and besides you there is no other. May you Lord help us to see the things in our lives for which we need to repent and be healed from, restore us my God. We all have experiences and memories to deal with, and attitudes which have developed in us apart from the personality you have formed in us. Help us to hear the still voice of your Spirit, may we be sensitive to your leading as well. Lead and guide us as we repent of our past mistakes and forgive us of these sins and fill our hearts with your presence.

Forgive us for being impatient, and for going ahead of you in any area of our lives. I pray for forgiveness even for anytime we have believed something came from you, because we did not bother to confirm it wholeheartedly with your word. May we be still and move in a greater gift of discernment to truly know it is you who has spoken. I take authority over our emotions, strong desires and vain imaginations which can lead us astray or into an incorrect path.

May we have open hearts that listen to you when you disagree, in anything! May we know that the enemy sends copies, and stumbling blocks before you send the blessings. I ask you gift us all with a discerning heart in the name of Jesus name. May the enemy, be it Satan, our flesh and emotions, or the world achieve deceiving us in any area: be it relationships, financial or vocational decisions.

I also pray for those people who have been praying for a change of jobs, housing, and citizenship status. I pray your favor is perceived in our lives concerning these things. I pray against all confusion, and indecision in our lives and declare we are convicted by your Truth.

May you guard our mouths from praising ourselves, or even letting others know when we do a good deed for others. May we be unattached of the good things we do, may we release it to you. May you also detach us from the emotional entanglements we may have as mentors, and leaders of our loved ones. May we accept that everyone you have placed in our lives belong to you, and that they are not indebted to us in any way. I pray you protect the hearts of those who lack this revelation, and ask you to teach them.

Father God, I pray that we put on the new man which was created according to You, in true righteousness and holiness. Your grace is enough, I ask that by your might you help us run this race with steadfast and patient perseverance. Restore hunger for prayer and for your word in any of us who may be lukewarm! I pray that with your help we can rebuild any broken walls, or foundations in our spiritual lives so that we may be be saved until the end. May we bring glory to your name, in Jesus name. Amen.

Devotional 3/6

If only the Lord had killed us back in Egypt”, they moaned. “There we sat around pots filled with meat and ate all the bread we wanted. But now you have brought us into this wilderness, to starve us to death.” Exodus 16:3

What are you hungry for?

God calls this time of the Israelite history, the day of rebellion. The Israelite people had been slaves of Egypt for generations, and God had finally set them free. The Lord fought for them sending plagues to the Egyptian land, H opened the Red Sea from them to cross over to another land and even drowned Pharaoh and his army in those waters. In the wilderness, as they were to make their way to the Promised land, they began to grow hungry. If any of you can relate, hunger causes us to be on edge. It can cause frustration, bitterness, and an ungrateful heart.

What are you hungry for? I’m hungry for a few things: a place of employment where I can walk in my purpose and calling, a romantic relationship, sex, and to get my fitness where it was 6 months ago. I know people who are hungry for these things, some are hungry to see their marriage restored, for their family to share a happy home, for an apartment or house to live, a change of scenery like traveling out of the country, for financial breakthroughs, for emotional or physical healing, others for the gifts of the spirit, maybe to obtain a VISA or residency documents, or debt forgiveness- there is true hunger in the world. I see it on the train, people are overworked, tired and hurting. Sometimes it seems as if life is a waste of time, since all we do here is suffer anyhow: work and suffer, sacrifice and be forgotten, invest and lose.

When we were children, we had dreams. We dreamt of being teachers, artists, parents, doctors, or engineers. But then we got caught up in the wilderness of life. Before we know it, we are in our mid twenties and have not reached half the goals we had in mind. This is pretty disappointing, and frustrating. This is how the Israelite were. They were frustrated, God seemed to have forgotten about them in the desert. Yes, they were no longer slaves- but they were hungry. God was offended, but He still provided for their needs. He gave them Manna (wafers, or bread) from heaven and when they complained even more when they became tried of the Manna, God gave them quail (bird meat, maybe it tasted like chicken lol). The Lord told them at some point to take enough for the day, not to save any. But some of the people disobeyed. In another occasion God told them to take the day off (Sabbath), because He not send them Manna (they were supposed t have some stored up in anticipation this time around)…. but guess what? Some of them disobeyed there too.

Frustration, complaining, murmuring, bitterness, desperation, anger, hastiness, depression; these are all matters of the heart, which we must plead God to heal us from. These things cause rebellion, and disobedience. The Israelites were disobedient, because they did not trust God would provide for the next day: so they hoarded some of the Manna (and when they woke up the next day it was spoiled). They came out on the Sabbath because they did not believe in resting, they did not believe God at His word. Be careful to rest in God’s word about your life, be careful to trust God daily– and not keep things for when you will need them. Resting in God means believing He will, doing your best and allowing God to do the rest. He provides to our needs on a daily basis, we can rest today knowing God has taken care of tomorrow already. God has daily instructions for us, let’s stay clear of believing God to do things in the same way He has in the past.

Lets pray:

Lord God of creation, forgive us when we fail at believing you. Forgive us when we act in our wisdom, believing that what you give us is not enough. May you continue to cultivate a heart that is trusting in you, as you become our place of refuge and our place of provision. May you remove any blindfolds from our eyes which do not allow us to see your power and love. May we walk in your love knowing that you provide our every need and that you will grant us the desires of our hearts, when the time is right. In Jesus name, Amen.

Devotional 2/27

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18

Worry is like a rocking chair—it’s always in motion but it never gets you anywhere.

Joyce Meyer

God knows that our human self absorbed nature is bound to its thoughts, so He constantly feels the need to remind us to not worry. Worry consumes our minds, we are constantly thinking and thinking can very much wear us out. One of the reasons for worry is that we need to be in control. It stems from a place of fear and distrust. There are many things out of our control, yet we can insist on controlling them. We were created with black hair, we dye it another color. We were born with a certain type of nose, and we have figured out how to reshape it. The human being is so concerned with being in control and having things done in their way. Then we go to the school of life, where we are taught that there are certain things in our control- all revolving our character, our thoughts and our behavior.

Have you ever changed anything by worrying?

It’s funny that Jesus asked the disciples, “which of you by worrying has grown an inch or two in stature?”

In one sense it is good to be concerned and show compassion, it is good to preoccupy our minds with a to do list, and even set some order to our lives with goal planning… but it is not okay to be anxious or to be stressed by a situation we are desiring to change or happen. If we do not take control of our minds, Satan will send us into a panic attack. Satan wants to destroy us, what better way than to steal our sanity?

Gods word tells us to not worry or be anxious, but to present our petitions to Him in faith. Faith is the opposite of worry and far, as love is the opposite of hate. Worry steals our peace, drains our energy and even makes us sick. Scientific studies have long proven that stress causes heart disease and cancer. As Cindy Trimm says, unguarded thoughts causes ‘issues in our tissues’. God gives us a better recipe, He says trust in ME. Don’t trust other people, do not even trust in yourself. Why? Because we are imperfect beings, and we are sure to make mistakes. Yet God, the true God, He makes no mistakes.

It’s challenging to trust God, but it is possible to learn how to trust Him. When God is in the center f our life, and of our thoughts, we can rely on Him for direction, breakthrough, change and peace. I remember being in the middle of the ocean, and feeling so much peace wearing goggles and a life belt; but it was such a different story without these. God reminded me that He is the life belt, and He is my eyes. He sees much further than we do. He upholds us with His hand for His own name’s sake. When you care about your reputation, you will care for it and that’s how the Lord is with us: He takes care of us, all who trust in Him. He protects His name, at least with those things we give Him access to. It is so important to give God access into every area of our lives, so that we may develop the trust He desires from us in each area. Maybe God wants you to trust Him to be your financial advisor, maybe your gym trainer, maybe your matchmaker, maybe your discipleship mentor… but first you have to be open to receive. It will not happen overnight, but just as friends grow and learn to trust each other-we can too learn to trust God!

Let’s pray:
Lord Jesus, I ask you for forgiveness for the many times I have been afraid, fearful or worried. I stand in the gap for my friends too, and all those reading. May you open our eyes like you opened Elisha’s eyes, may we see heavens armies fighting for us. May we see your love embrace and guide us. May we believe that your are for us and not against. May we see what you want us to see, and not be consumed by our own preoccupied thoughts. Convict us that your plans are to I’ve us hope, and a better future, not to destroy us or make us suffer. May you always be the lifter of our heads. And Lord, please help us all be content in you, as you say that godliness with contentment is great gain. I ask you all these favors, in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Devotional 2/2

If you cling to your life, you will lose it, and if you let your life go, you will save it. Luke 17:33

Our act of worship is no longer to bring a sacrifice, but to be one ourselves. We remain living. It is all of us that is being offered. Worship is about what I say with my tongue. It’s about what I watch… what I think… where I go with my feet.
Jago Wynne

Life is about struggle, hard work and a bit of sacrifice to attain the best. Nobody like to talk about sacrifice. It even sounds hard. Sacrifice is ‘the offering up of something precious for a cause or a reason’. Love is about sacrificing, because we must compromise with those we love to make it work. Making money is about sacrifice because we need to exchange our time, energy and services, for money. Having a healthy body is sacrificing sweets, and other unhealthy great tasting delights. having an agile and fit body, requires sacrificing sleep and comfort. And so that everything can work out for us, according to God’s plan: we must sacrifice too. 

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Why sacrifice? We were created with a God-given purpose, but each of us is born with a fault: sin. And sin keeps us from experiencing ALL that God designed for us to experience and do. In the spirit world blood sacrifices are powerful. Blood sacrifices like abortions, self cutting, animal killing, etc. This is weird, I know but it is real: blood is life, it has life energy, power, force. Even demons are invoked when presented with a blood sacrifice. God instituted blood sacrifice, through animals and forbid sacrificial offering of children (which was the custom choice for pagan gods in the bible). God required offerings like incense and blood sacrifices, in exchange for forgiveness. The people who offered sacrifice, were covered by the blood and were set free from the consequences of sin.

Jesus’ sacrificed His life for you. He left FATHER GOD, and His glorious place in heaven, to become a human being in this ugly world. He suffered rejection. Imagine God, the creator of all things seen and unseen, being rejected by His own creation! Beaten, spit on, mocked, hated, and crucified for the very people He created. So in return, to please God we offer our faith and all that He requires for us to give up. The Lord only asks us to give up the bad stuff in our lives; and sometimes it feels impossible or like it is too much to give, because it is attractive to our senses. 

  1. The fruit of our lips:  INSTEAD OF LYING, CURSING, GOSSIPING, SWEARING… We should give God a sacrifice of praise (express warm approval or admiration of).  
  2. Sacrifice of your life: INSTEAD OF GIVING OUR LIVES TO SEX, DRUGS AND ANY OTHER THING WE CHOOSE TO…. Let’s present our bodies to God (our time, ambition, possessions, ears, mouths and sexuality, our mind, emotions and attitudes, sleeping, eating, going-to-work, etc. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Romans 12:2 (MSG))
  3. Love God and Love people: We all put up fronts or masks to protect ourselves, or expect others to cater to us, and even hold people guilty for ever… God wants us to serve others with love (Love is sincere, it is not arrogant, it is not hypocritical and it is not fearful. He wants us to sacrifice our fear. When you know the God has for YOU, it sets YOU free from your limitations and flaws. Sincere love is to take off your mask and reveal who you are to others. God also wants us to stand one another, to be in harmony, to be humble before each other, to be forgiving towards one another).
  4. The sacrifice of money: Tithes, offering and generosity (10 percent of income, first fruits of increase, voluntary gifts for God’s mission on earth as you experience God’s grace).

Let’s focus on protecting God’s call and anointing, and separate yourself from sin and things which weigh you down. We must exchange a sinful mind, for a renewed mind. We must exchange a rebellious lifestyle, for a lifestyle of repentance. We must sacrifice our own will, and exchange it for God’s perfect will. Let’s focus on the will of God, not the problems. Look for people to help you. Maintain yourself separated for God, sober and connected to God. “He will keep in perfect peace those whose mind is kept on God”.

Let’s pray:

Lord, I thank you that you do not reject a contrite and humbled heart. Today I stand in the gap for my self, and those reading; may you prepare our bodies to be a sanctuary. As your word says Your will is perfect, it is Good, and it is Pleasing, but in order to get that we must exchange our living bodies as sacrifice. I pray you continue to love us back to life, and restore our minds to a place of humility, of faith and of surrender. may we love others, as you desire. And may those who do not understand monetary offering receive revelation by your spirit and by your ministering angels. May you work all things to GOOD, for those who love you and are called by You according to your purpose. In Jesus name, Amen. 

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Devotional 9/3

When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. Isaiah 43:2

Trust the wait. Embrace the uncertainty. Enjoy the beauty of becoming. When nothing is certain, anything is possible.
Mandy Hale

Today, in my Puerto Rico experience I experienced two sides of a coin. We went snorkeling in Culebra island, and it was amazing; I actually challenged myself to go into the deep waters despite of my fear. I was able to see a few coral reefs, but I wouldn’t go deeper to see more because I was honestly still afraid. It was pretty amazing for me to be in water of such depth, my heart racing and my mind chattering up a storm. I felt somewhat proud of doing so, the snorkeling team told us that the water was 18-22 feet deep, which is twice as deep as the pools I’ve been in so I was pretty excited to be comfortable in deeper water. Eventually I asked for a life belt, because I wanted to be extra careful not to get tired in the water and worried that I would drink saltwater and choke (remember my mind was chattering). The ocean to me is amazing and beautiful, yet so uncertain. One of my greatest fears, is uncertainty. I’ve battled with uncertainty all of my life and more so in my hesitancy to surrender fully to God. Uncertainty is a fear of the unknown, it keeps people from going after their dream and taking risks. You just never know what will happen, and the uncertain paradigm automatically believes something negative will happen. And for the past month, I’ve been going through a test of trust where uncertainty has made its way back up to the surface! Despite of all that I have overcome, uncertainty is still a giant that I must defeat.

Giants are things in our lives that are overcome, and destroyed. Things that are developed by association and practice like thought patterns (paradigms) and psychological issues (fears, obsessions, worry, depression, etc.) are giants. Some giants are sicknesses, which come from stress, resentment and from believing a lie (so we have to be careful when believing what is spoken over us, even by doctors). Giants are distinct from weakness because they taunt he victim. Like David slaying Goliath with a sling and a rock. David said who is this, defying the people of the living God day and night?! And I the name of God, He was able to defeat the giant. (1 Samuel 17)

We enjoyed the snorkeling adventure for about 2 hours, and headed to the next destination: Flamenco beach. The boat was not able to dock by the shore, so they parked in a location which made it possible for us to swim safely to shore. This time I jumped in the water, and headed to shore. Except this time I got tired! My mind immediately made me aware that I could not stand in the middle of the ocean, so I began to float. By this time my heart is racing, and I did not feel safe: my friend a Yessy grabbed my hand and said ‘calm down!’. My body calmed down enough to float and swim a few inches, but my mind started chattering again. I started saying ‘I can’t, I can’t’, and my body was becoming too heavy for my friend to reach standing ground. Two men came to swim me over, but even while standing on solid ground: I told them I couldn’t stand there. That’s a perfect picture of what fear does. Fear of the unknown robs you of strength, confidence and possibility.

Declaration: I declare that I am overcoming uncertainty, because I know God is certain! I declare I will be protected and guided through life. I declare I will have peace because I keep my mind on God at all times and I am safe in Him.

Let’s pray:

Dear Lord, thank you such a wonderful time and new things learned about you, the works and even myself. I’m sorry for my trust issues, I pray you restrengthen my confidence in you so that I may surrender and not be afraid of being in your will. I pray we all believe and know that we are secure in your hands. I pray for people who are defied by different fears and phobias, praying you give them strength and confidence in your love for them. I know that your plans for us are good, even if you allow for us to go through negative situations too. I know you are for us and not against, and I ask you that if we ever become weary in believing you would come to our rescue. In Jesus name, Amen.