Saturday, August 16, 2008

You are an Amazing God

Joshua 3:5
5 Joshua told the people, "Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do amazing things among you."

You know how God will put a certain verse in your path several times in the course of a week? This is one I've heard a couple times recently, and usually that means God is trying to tell me something. I read it once in "The Beloved Disciple" by Beth Moore, and it stuck out to me then, but when I stumbled upon it a second time (don't exactly remember where, I read my Bible and I read tons of blogs about God), I got excited. How many verses are in the Bible altogether? Hold on, let me find out. According to this, 31,102. That's a lot of different verses. So, I know that God speaks to us through his written word, and I know that when the words grab us, it is because something has struck a resonant chord within us, and our hearts feel that tug that says "This is for you". I think it is an awesome verse, very exciting, and pretty simple. Consecrate means to "set apart, to keep holy", and the rest is pretty self-explanatory. If we are setting ourselves apart as holy to be used by God, then he will do amazing things among us.
For example, I attend a church that has a lot of people who used to be down and out, as in: drug use, homelessness, gang life, many people that others would look down on. They have seen alot of trouble in their lives, admittedly much of it self-inflicted. I have to say, though, that I feel a sincerity in the love for Jesus at this church that outshines many I've been to, and they also sincerely love each other. One lady that has been coming for a year, Zakiyah, stood in front of a crowd of 2,000 tonight and gave her testimony of what God has done in her life recently. She has been coming to church about a year, and gave her life to Christ shortly after she started attending. She has, in her own words, gotten closer and closer to Jesus during this time, getting up at 5:30 each morning to spend time with her God.
She has had a hard time finding work, she told us, because she has five, count em', FIVE felonies under her belt. She didn't say for what, but she does have three daughters to raise, so it would suck not to be able to provide for them. She recently wrote Tim Kaine, the governor of Virginia, and praise God, she found favor in the governor's eyes, because she has been officially pardoned of ALL FIVE FELONIES! I am not an advocate of soft crime punishment by any means, but her heart has been transformed by a powerful God, and he saw fit to pardon her here on earth as he surely will when she stands before him in heaven. She set herself apart for him, and he did amazing things in her life. It was apparently a "God Rocks" kind of night at my church, because we have also been granted permission to send 8-10 people in to work Monday through Friday in the PUBLIC school system here in Richmond. We will have our own office, and kids can come for mentoring, tutoring, and I'm not sure what else, but I know that when the kids get in trouble they will have to do community hours at our church..I know it will be the best thing to happen ever in some kids' lives. Thank you, God, that you are so big!
I have still been having a rough time at work money-wise, and my attitude hasn't been great, but it is changing. I am not singing Zippadeedooda, but I am kind of "so what"ing bad situations instead of getting upset about them. God is teaching me to trust him through good and bad, and it is important to me to learn that.
Bible study on Tuesday night was completely awesome, it was my co-leader, Heather and I, and two girls from work: Amanda and Stefanie. Both girls are not living Christian lives currently, but praise God, they have the desire and Amanda at least is making huge changes in her lifestyle after dedicating her life to Christ two weeks ago. She even told Stefanie, who was a strong Christian at one point but has fallen away, that if Stef wanted to call and discuss things she learns in her quiet time, she would love to be there for her to talk with! You go, you new little Christian! We had awesome conversation and really opened up to each other. What a blessing to be able to take part in sharing God's love for these girls.
God gave us free will. We can do things our way, conforming to this world and taking its' empty pleasures as our profit. Or we can say "NO" to the the things that keep us in bondage to unholiness. That is when God can work in our situation. It takes faith to set yourself apart, because you have to believe that there is a reason you are doing it. God operates on the faith of his people.
Zakiyah set herself apart from her past, choosing a bright future with the Lord. He has done amazing things for her and through her, as she ministers to others in the body of Christ. Amanda is choosing to set herself apart, and is transforming before our eyes.
So, this week let's consecrate ourselves- set ourselves apart as holy, so that the Lord will do amazing things among us! Amazing means you'll be standing around with your mouth open, by the way. Maybe with a letter of full pardon from the governor in your hand.


John said...

Great blog! Full of encouragement and hope. He is AMAZING! I love how Christ Jesus is using you to share truth and courage(as it takes a lot of courage to step out and let Jesus consecrate us). May He continue to bless you in your efforts. Remember He has called us to be servants of all so rejoice in teh high esteem of your current job. He places us where we can bring Him glory. Isn`t it amazing that He uses us despite our falts, and that He has chosen to perfect us so that we may share eternity and oneness with Him. What is more amazing that we can perform miracles or that our names are written in the book of lifeƉ Praise God for His grace and mercy!

May the God of peace Himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is He who calls you, and He also will bring it to pass.(1 Thessalonians 5:23-24)

From: a stranger, but also a brother in Christ Jesus

jeleasure said...

I have not heard from you since August 2nd! What is up with you these days?
31,102, Yes, I have all of them memorexed. You didn't think I was going to say "Memorized", did you?
This would not be an impossible task, by the way.
The Jewish children (not sure when it ended) would begin memorizing the Tora, the first five books at the age of five. Then when they turned 10, they began memorizing the rest of their Holy Scriptures. New Testament not included.
There is that word Holy. Did you know the Bible say, "without holiness, no one will see the Lord"? (Heb. 12:14)
Romans 6:19-23 discusses the steps to eternal life.
Hey! Would you like to try a simple blogging game? Myself and another blogger thought of it when I failed to include a portion of my draft in one of my poste. If so, go to my recent blog tonight and post a comment. Because tomorrow, I will be adding some intentionally omitted text to it. The idea is to see if you can tell me what was not in the text the first time you read it. This is also a good way to network. You can play this game on your own blog with other people. And, if people who participated here are aware that you are doing this, you can create a bigger network.

Truth4thejourney said...

This is so important. God wants his people to be perfect, without blemish. Of course, we cannot achieve that status here without the blood of Jesus. But we can surrender our lives to His service.

Jennifer said...

Wow, what a powerful story! I love that goes right along with 1 Peter 1:13-16. It's like you said when God wants you to learn something, He tends to remind us over and over!...Thanks for your comment on my blog. I love how God uses verses in peoples lives. Then those verses tend to bring a sense of unity between believers! Good stuff!

DidiLyn said...

Poofy strangers on my bed, indeed! You make me laugh. Also, our people to pray for (your side bar) is "Herki of Turkey." Can I laugh just a little bit? Please?

Mariel said...

you are such a beautiful light in your sphere of influence! God spoke that Joshua verse to me recently and I, too, posted the end of a recent post! God's warning them to get ready to see something great! He is preparing you, too, dear one! He has great plans for you and He doesn't want you to miss it! He is so faithful to us!

Thank you for sharing these great testimonies!

DidiLyn said...

I just had to come back and make it clear (not murky) that you made me LOL...AGAIN.
Stop with the funny, already.
Sorry I have been so lurky.
Going to pray for Turkey now.

Van said...

You are amazing! I loved how you wound all your stories together to make life all about Jesus our redeemer! That's our God! I pray your days at work will fill to overflowing with joy as you go about your King's busniness touching others with your love!

Shonda said...

Thanks for stopping by my blog and leaving a comment.

That is an amazing testimony of God's faithfulness and love for those who truly seek HIM with all their heart, soul and mind. I just love it.

I enjoyed visiting your blog. I bookmarked it so I can find it again.
Blessings in Christ.

Engrafted by His Grace-

Penn Tomassetti said...

That was really awesome to hear about Zakiyah's pardon. It was a reminder of my total and complete pardon before the eternal Judge. I also am glad to hear about how the lowly are being blessed with the hope of Christ in your city. Jesus only saves sinners and no one else.
God bless.

jeleasure said...

Thanks for stopping by and saying hi. Good for you.
Here is a funny comment my pastor once made about being in a MARRIGE (yikes) that is the product of unhealthy beginnings. He said, "Love is grand. But divorce is a hundred grand"
Tamela of Tamela's place has posted a new blog item today as part of the game.

Edie said...

God is going to use you in big ways Angela. He has already begun to do so. I love your Bible study! You may not be singing Zippadeedooda in the world but I can hear it loud and clear when you speak of our Awesome God!

He will bring you out of that job and into something new in the fullness of time my sister. I know how you feel though. When I was waiting tables and wanting to move on to something different He brought me out at just the right time but there was a wait. This has been the case with every move.

As of today I am no longer generating an income. I know this is His doing and that He has something planned. He's been chasing me with scriptures too. :) But I don't quite know what to do. I don't feel that I should go out and hunt down a job. He has brought a couple of opportunities for small graphic design projects. I have been praying that He would allow me to work from home (I'm beat) and I love graphic and web design, and creative endeavors so I'm hoping that maybe He will open a door in that area. In any case, would you pray for me in this please? I would so appreciate it.

Love ya-

Edie said...

Hi Angela - I just wanted to let you know that I have a meme scheduled to post tomorrow that I think you will like. It's a Random Question meme and tomorrow's question in "What's Your Passion?" I hope you have a chance to join in.

Have a great weekend! I'm going to the Women of Faith Conference tomorrow! Woo Hoo!