When the Darkness will not Lift Part 2

Link to free download in my previous post. Reading this book farther has really helped me with my stuggles in depression, which is what im going to show you today from my notes. Anyone fighting the darkness I hope this pulls at your heart, even if you dont agree on everything, and brings you closer to God in your sufferings. God bless. ♡


 

In this pit of mud and distruction, see yourself there with the King.


We can grow in the midst of hardship, I know because God is growing my faith and taking me out of this darkness. And its really been evident the last few days. Even though my troubles were not very long, I am a much happpier person today then I was a week ago. Genuinely happier. Imputed righteousness of Christ will swallow up any depression as you rest in him. Anti-depressants are not the decisive saviour,  Christ is. If we do not succeed we are not lost or alone. The experience of David in the Psalms is a good example of this, “I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up from the pit of distruction,  out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord.” -Psalm 40:1-3 , also, “Save me, O God! For the waters have come up to my neck. I sink in deep mire, where there is no foothold; I have come into deep waters, and the flood sweeps over me.” -Psalm 69:1&2. God loved David so much because he cried so much, and it is a beautiful thing when you genuinely cry out to God. “I am weary with my moaning; everynight I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping.” -Pslam 6:6 , “You have kept my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book?”-Psalm 56:8 . Matthew 5:4 also goes along with this. So wait patiently for the Lord after you cry out to him, only he knows how long we must wait. His timing is all loving towards his children. His will will be done.

Learn to be patient in darkness and fight for joy. Fight as one who is saved by grace and held by Christ. Never forget your security rests on Christ faithfulness first. In our darkness we must afferm the wise hand of God to hold us even when we have no strength to hold him. “Not the I have already obtained or already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.” -Philippians 3:12. Our faith rises and falls, but our secuirty does not rise or fall. We must persevere in faith. 

The darkest experience for a child of God is when his faith sinks out of his own sight, not Gods. “The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” -John 3:8 God is at the bottom of my faith, and if it disappears, God is still there sustaining its roof and protecting the seed from distruction. Even in our lost sight of our own sincerity, we can be safe in Jesus. “The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and of children, then heirs – heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him.”-Romans 8:16, also 2 Timothy 2:19, 1 Corinthians 1:9, and Philippians 1:6. The night will come for every Christian, we must wait for the Lord, cry to him, and know that our self-indictment, rendered in the darkness, is not as sure as Gods word spoken in light.

How do you know your faith is real? I ask myself this all the time and it is a big struggle in a Christians life. 

  • Stop looking at your faith and put your attention on Christ.
  • Faith is sustained by looking at Christ crucified and risen, not by turning from Christ to analyze your faith. Luke 22-24
  • Focus on the greatness of our saviour.
  • There is a certainty that we live by and it is enough.
  • Dont let wrong feelings govern you, act against them and dont lose sight of the Gospel. 

Defeating these feelings are enables by the Spirit, and is becoming what you are in Christ.

 

When the Darkness will not Lift Part 1

I stumbled across this really inspiring book by John Piper its called When the Darkness will not Lift. Ive been going through some struggles in sadness and depression lately and this book really helps a lot. While reading this book Ive been jotting down some notes and I thought I would share them with you. I will provide the link to the free download, so maybe you can share the same experience that I did. Free Download.


 

We have tasted and seen that Jesus is sweet, a life giving of eternal joy for our souls. But the taste, that shows true spiritual life, is overwhelmed by the darkness. 

Learning to live on the rock solid truth of what happened when Jesus died on the cross and rose again is what John Piper calls gutsy guilt. We have to remember that life will always be sinful and imperfect. He explains the secret of this “gutsy guilt” in two parts: justification and sanctification. 

Justification by faith, is the most important and foundational weapon for joy in darkness. The deepest root of our misery is that we are all sinners without our own righteousness, guilty and destined for punishment. Declared righteous in the courtroom of heaven without justification, i would stand condemned by Gods law. “When all the people heard this, and the tax collectors too, they declared God just…” – Luke 7:29 But God sent Christ, to live a perfect life, for us to be saved. Christ is a substitute of our sins, “…for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.” – Matthew 26:28 also, 1 Corinthians 15:3, 1 Peter 3:18. Christ is also a substitute performance of righteousness, “For as by one mans disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one mans obedience the many will be made righteous.” – Romans 5:19 also, Romans 10:4, 2 Corinthians 5:21, Philippians 3:9. Our guilt is removed by Christs blood, Ephesians 1:7. My title to heaven is provided by Christs obedience, Romans 5:19. 

Possibly the best news in the world to the ungodly is that by faith alone God counts us as righteous because of Christ, and that is the rock on which we are to stand when the dark clouds gather around us. Justification is by grace alone, (not our merit) through faith alone,  (not mixed with our works) on the basis of Christ alone, (not his righteous with ours) to the glory of God alone. (not ours)

On the basis of this forgiveness, God gives us his Holy Spirit and progressively transforms us into the image of his son. Not justification but based on it. This is sanctification, our next point. “But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life.” – Romans 6:22. Our faith is not righteousness it is our desperate receiving of Christ and all he is to us. With empty hands we receive Christ, whos faithful life fulfilled the law of God. Sanctification is by faith alone, only faith receives the power to bear the fruit of love. Done confuse these or the fight for joy in the darkness will fall from your hands. 

Righteousness is outside of us, it is Jesus Christ. And he has promised to never cast you away, “All the the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast away.” – John 6:37, by this act God will unite you with Jesus. You will be “in him” and you will now forever be loved, forgiven and righteous, Romans 8:30, 2 Corinthians 4:16-18. God will hold you, Jude 24, you will make it.


 

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Hebrews 13:20&21

“Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen.”


Before I begin this post, I would like to thank all of those who have followed me and liked them, you keep me going. Also I apologize for the lacking posts this weekend. My husband has been working a lot lately and had this holiday weekend off, so we decided to relax and enjoy our time. Also Sundays church service was so great, a little girl was baptized in our churches big horse trof, it was so moving to see a young child take that first step in living her life for God.  Her testimony was so heart warming and showed the true passion for God.  I just loved it. Also I have been suffering some saddness lately, just in general, being 12 hours away from my family is hard some days, keep me in your prayers for God to lift my spirit and get me out of this rut, if it is his will. Thank you all for your kind words, I continue to pray for you all.

Okay! Now I to this passage. I just love the book of Hebrews, it is one of my favorites.  That and Romans ofcourse. This particular passage is a benediction and I found 6 pillars of God center truths while studying this and watching a few John Piper sermons, thought I would share them. So heres the 6:

  1. God is an absolute existing God.
  2. He is a reconciling God.
  3. A covenant keeping God,  promise keeping.
  4. He is a shepherding God
  5. A sanctifying God.
  6. And a Christ exalting God. 

Now lets go through these and dig deeper.

  1. Absolute existing God:  Everything that is not God has God at the beginning. Nothing, absolutely nothing, is made without him. Whether good or bad, God is behind it all. The worth of God is compared to the whole universe, he is the beginning and the end. “Whom did he consult, and who made him understand? Who taught him justice, and taught him knowledge, and showed him the way of understanding? Behold, the nations are like a drop from a bucket, and are accounted as the dust on the scales; behold, he takes up the coastlands like fine dust.” -Isaiah 40:14-15 God shouls not be taken for granted, he should be praised because nothing is made without him.
  2. Now may the God of peace….” God is a peace making and peace filled God. Sin is what seperates us from him. He is the perfect example that we will never reach until Jesus returns. We are nothing, no matter how good we think we are or how much ‘good works’ we do, compared to God. The book of Hebrews is full of sin separation to God. “Indeed, under the law almost everything is purified with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.” -Hebrews 9:22 Many other verses are Hebrews 1:3, 2:17, 5:1, 9:28, 10:4, 10:19. God is moving in the world to move the world through his son Jesus Christ to make peace with you! God has preserved us, even in the break down of peace, to the measure of the peace we recieve from his grace. Ephesians 2 goes more indepth with this and is a great chapter to study. Come to God through Jesus, Prince of peace, and be forgiven of your sins that are seperating you from God.
  3. …brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant…” The covenant commitment is being raised from the dead with a blood bought resurrection. “And likewise the cup that is poured  our for you is the new covenant in my blood.” -Luke 22:20 The covenant is true, Christs blood is the seal, the blood, of the covenant that is written on our hearts. Hebrews 8. All future grace is sealed through Christ. God will never depart from you or turn away from doing good. Come to him through our saviour Jesus Christ, whos covenant is true and faithful.
  4. “…the great shepherd of the sheep…”  We have a shepherd,  greater and more present and alive then any pastor. Christ is the merciful cheif shepherd that God raised from the dead. He is Almighty,  he guides you with his eye upon you, healing your broken heart. People visit you in the hospital but Christ never leaves your bedside. JESUS IS RAISE FOREVER!
  5. …equip you with everything good that you may do his will, working in us that which is pleasing in his sight…”  God sanctifys you to do his will, he equips you. “And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work.” – 2 Corinthians 9:8 God is at work in all our good, it is his doing not ours. He goes inside and works in us and through us. It is not I but Christ… “But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary,  I worked harded than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that was with me.” – 1 Corinthians 15:10 Philippians 2 goes in depth with this as well, spend your life deep in it.
  6. …through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forver and ever. Amen.” God planned all this through Jesus,  all his work is through him. Jesus purchased out dept and he cleases us forever. “as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that will full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me to live is Christ, to die is gain.” -Philippians 1:20&21 God does everything through Christ, to whom the glory be forever! 

If any of you reading this hasent come to know God and our saviour Jesus, please think about what I have said and come to him who makes your burden light. He will wash you from all sins if you follow him and praise him with your whole heart. He is the missing piece in your life and is speaking to you now. He who has ears, let him hear. 

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The Shepherd to Follow

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John chapter 10 is about the Good Shepherd. It is called a figure of speech in verse 6 and is, what I think, one of the most beautiful word picture in the Bible. Its about the true Shepherd, Jesus, which is stated in verse 11. “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.” He cares for his flock and they follow him and he keeps them safe. The sheep know his voice and he keeps them safe. Verse 27 says, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater then all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand,. I and the Father are one.” Jesus came to give life, he bought out his sheep and goes before them and they follow the Shepherd. “He who does not enter the sheepfold by the door but climbs in by another way, that man is a theif and robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep.” -John 10:1&2 Theifs and robbers enter in another way, but the true sheep of the shepherd enter through Jesus, the door.


 

God is the most known shepherd in the Old Testament,  “But we your people, the sheep of your pasture, will give thanks to you forever;  from generation to generation we will recount your praise.” -Psalm 79:13. Also in Pslam 23, 77:20, 80:1, and 95. In Ezekiel chapter 34 verse 31 says, “You are my sheep, human sheep of my pasture, and I am your God, declares the Lord God.” Going back to Jesus and the Faher are one, God says in verse 23, “And I will set up over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he shall feed them: he shall feed them and be their shepherd. And I, the Lord shall be their God, and my servant David shall be prince among them. I am the Lord; I have spoken.” Now King David has died before this is written, so its obvious that he is talking about Jesus the Messiah. Jesus becomes the one great shepherd to bring all the sheep together. The father gives him the sheep, which are known from the beginning, and he sets out to find these sheep and they will not follow any other voice.

Many false shepherds have been around since the fall of man. And the final false shepherd is the Anti-Christ. They try to lead all astray away from Jesus, the true and faithful shepherd.  But it is not possible to make the elect flee, we follow faithfully but not perfectly, nothing can break our bond with Jesus.


 

Remeber Jesus calls us by name, listen to the great shepherd and come to him, hear his voice. There will be struggles, but once we recognize Jesus calling us we are set free from the world and follow him and never flee. He leads us to green pastures and never forsakes us, Jesus clears the way. He alone is the door and the saving shepherd, follow his word and he will save.


Living in a World Through God Part 3

“Forgive each other, as the Lord has forgiven you, so you must also forgive.” -Colossians 3:13


You guessed it, Forgiveness. Such a smiple word but has so much meaning. Forgiveness can be the hardest thing to do, but was the easiest for God to do. Forgiveness frees a person to enjoy a relationship with peace, and honors God. Healthy, freeing, peace, and love are all atributes of forgiveness. It is a direct command from God and must not be sparing among believers. I have 4 points on why we should forgive, along with scripture to back it up. I pray that this helps some of you forgive as it has helped me live in a world through God. 


  1. You are never more like God when you forgive. God is so forgiving and his mercy abounds. He is the God of forgiveness, he afferms no anger, bitterness, nor vengeance. “Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson,  they shall become like wool.” -Isaiah 1:18 “I am he who blots out your transgressions for my own sake, and I will remember not your sins.” -Isaiah 43:25 There is also many more scripture that backs this up: Exodus 34:5, Pslam 32, 85, Isaiah 55:6, Jeremiah 33:8, 31:33, Ephesians 4:32, 5:1. The most predominant sign of God’s forgiveness is the message of Christ. “But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven.”- Matthew 5:44&45, Luke 15. You display God like mercy when you forgive, so walk in love just as Christ loved you! Colossians 3:13.
  2. Its not only murder thats forbidden by the 6th commandment. “You have heard that it was said, You shall not murder, and whoever murders will be liable to judgement. But I say to you that everyone who is angery with his brother will be liable to judgement; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says You fool! Will be liable to the hell of fire.”-Matthew 5:21&22, 1 John 3:18. Jesus clearly says if you have hate in your heart, you are a murder at heart. Some of you dont mind seeing Christ in yourselves, but you dont recognize Christ in others. Your not mad at your own sins, but the sins of others. Love and forgive in your heart or you are selfish and murderous at heart.
  3. This is a big one! Whoever has offended you has offended God more! Pslam 51, 32, Matthew 18:21-35. The parable of the Unforgiving Servent is a good one to describe this point. “Peter came up and said to him, Lord how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times? Jesus said to him, I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven.”-Matthew 18:21&22 God is more holy then us and more offended by our sins and others sins. Dont say you cant forgive, when the holiest of holys forgives you of all transgressions. All sin is against God Almighty, when its against us its a minor detail.
  4. And finally, its only reasonable for those who have been forgiven on a greater scale to forgive on a lesser scale. Again the parable of the unforgiving servent is great at explaining this, “Should not you have had mercy on your fellow servant, as I had mercy on you?” -Matthew 18:34 God has forgiven you all sin , past , present, and future through his son Jesus Christ! Forgive others just has he has forgiven you. 

Forgiveness is a big thing in living your life through God.  God is all about forgiveness, we should be too. He has forgiven you a massive debt, can you forgive others their debt to you? 

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Living in a World Through God Part 2

“And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.”-Philippians 1:9-11


 

This post is going to be all about living your life.

You cant live your life if you dont sync it with God.

Let me ask you a question, where is your joy? Is it in the disapation of suffering or poverty? If you answer yes, my brother or sister please read Romans 5. Your joy should come from Gods grace! Turn from your selfish world and give to others out of your affliction and poverty with joy and love in your heart. You were made to make God look great, bring your life in sync with him! He made you for joy, be happy in him full and forever with joy. He made you to love each other, to do them good and include them in your experience with God.

Grace is coming down and joy is rising in your heart!

Love is the overflow of joy in God in a wealth of generosity. The aim of our charge is love. Faith, hope and love remain, but the greatest of these is love. You cant love people without deep joy in God. Bible believers should care about all suffering, dont just walk by and leave people alone. Care about others and where they are going. 

Help the weak and remember the word of Jesus, Blessed to give then to recieve, this is love in joy in Christ. (2 Corinthians 8,  Acts 20:35) 

The joy in Jesus is getting larger and larger!

Have you noticed when you get saved things get worse and worse? (Hebrews 10:32, 11:24-26, 12:1-2, 13:13&14) Joyfully accept your struggles in life because you know your God is better and abiding! (Pslam 16:11)


Love comes in being satisfied in everything God promises in Jesus.  It is nothing on earth, stuff is not the sorce of joy, and when your joy in God overflows to meet the needs of others it makes you a loving person. Love others at a great cost to yourself because you know being satisfied in God is joy. If you want to love people,  the root of loving people and glorifying God is the same. 

God is most glorifyed in you when you are most satisfied in him.

Therefore, make it your passion to seek satisfaction in God above all satisfactions at any cost to have joy in your life through Christ. 


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All About my Bible Study

“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of the truth. ” -2 Timothy 2:15


I have been under the weather today with a sickening migraine, so I thought I would do a shorter post today showing how I study Gods word. I know this isnt for everyone but im a hands on learner so I write A LOT. 

Studying Gods word brings me so much joy and builds me strong in faith. When im down I just open my Bible and read for hours and hours, sometimes I lose myself in it all day. Theres so much depth and breath in Gods word. One day you might read it and feel something different the next day when you read the same scripture. Some people say dont read it more then once, please, read it over and over. The Bible is an endless book of the Holy ones word sprinkled all over it, and I cant get enough of it.


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Here is a picture of my Bible along with 2 of my books. My husband purchased my 2nd Bible (which is in the pic) for my birthday recently on the 15th. My other Bible was filled with post its and highlights and I sent that one to my family to bring them to christ.

  • My Bible is a ESV John MacArthur Study Bible purchased at Mardels Books Store.
  • The green book is one of my journals for notes, purchased at Walmart.
  • The brown book is another journal, purchased at Hobby Lobby.

 

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My journals are differnt in what they hold. One has scripture, the other is notes that I take while reading, watching sermons, or at church. Both help me in many ways, as I said im more hands on with learning,  they help me remember scripture and I can always look back at them and compair them to my Bible.  I like to keep them interesting with different color highlights and pen, I guess its a girl thing. 


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Getting into my Bible, I like to use post it tabs. I find they dont rip and are clear on one side so you can see all the wording. Also they come in many colors to coordinate with, you can order so many colors off of amazon or get the normal colors I have shown at you walmart,  cvs, walgreens, etc. If a section of scripture stands out to me I will write the name of the book the chapter and what it is about on the tab. Ex: Ezekiel 34 Lord the Shepard,  this whole chapeter of 34 in Ezekiel talks about the one true shepard. Helps me find things easier when im looking for something specific.


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Finally,  the insides of my Bible. Now to each their own, but I use one color throughout. And I dont highlight certain things or what have you. I highlight what ever comes out and speaks to me, and usually when I read through again there is more that comes out of the woodworks. I use the Zebrite Bible Highlighters, and I purchased mine from Mardels Book Store. These are nice Bible highlighters, no bleeding or smearing and many different colors.


 

Some methods I use when taking notes or readying the Bible are the APTAT, and SOAP method, and ill break those down for you now:

  • APTAT Method
  • A- Admit you cant do anything without God.
  • P- Pray about it.
  • T- Trust in a specific tailor made, blood bought promise. (Pick a scripture that stands out to you)
  • A- Act on that prayer and scripture. 
  • T- Thank God for the help that hes giving you.

 

  • SOAP Method
  • S- Write the scripture you have trouble with or that helps you.
  • O- Observe that scripture and write what speaks to you through it.
  • A- Apply it to your life situations. 
  • P- Pray about it, and how God can carry you through that scripture. 

Well, thats my Bible study techniques, if you have other ones id love to hear them. I love finding new ways to dig deep in Gods word and grow in his ways. 

Hope you all enjoyed this blog post today, and maybe it lit a spark to start something new in your studies. Again, im always praying for you all, God bless. ♡