Genesis 2:8-10, "And the Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed. And out of the ground made the Lord God to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight, and good for food; the tree of life also in the midst of the garden, and the tree of knowledge of good and evil. And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and became into four heads."
In prayer this morning, the Lord brought someone to my spirit which led me to ask, "Why is this person always discouraged?" I couldn't;t help but notice that this person battled with constant discouragement and was often see with their head hung down. The Lord responded, "(He) sows the seed of discouragement in the lives of others!" WOW!
I began searching the scriptures which led me to ask the Lord again about seed. This time He spoke, "Marry science to faith and study garden systems." Needless to say, you are about to hear the fruit of those instructions.
The entire Bible has 52 references to gardens specifically mentioned from Genesis to John, the last of the Four Gospels. Go figure. This message will enlighten you in many areas concerning why sowing seed is necessary and what happens when we aren't diligent over it. You will be blessed by the word.
"Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy." Matthew 5:7
My baby boy commutes to college and since his car is down, I have been transporting him back and forth to campus. This morning, in particular, while waiting at the stop light, I turned to my right and saw a gentleman who appeared to be under the influence. My first thought was, “What in the world is wrong with him?” As if to interrupt my thoughts, the Father spoke expressly and said, “That is My son. I love him but he is bound by drug demons.” I felt convicted in my spirit and immediately began to pray for “God’s son who was bound by drugs.”
Last night, in my studies, I came across a scenario in scripture that talked about the mercy of God. After my experience this morning, I knew it was confirmation to what the Lord wanted me to share today on my podcast. I titled the message “The Art of Mercy” because we are not born merciful; we must be taught how to have compassion on others. In the message, I expounded on Proverbs 6:16-19; Luke 11:5-8, and James 2:13 as I attempted to bring an understanding as to why God expects us to be compassionate. I used some personal examples, too, that I hope will inspire you to consider the matter, weigh it against your own actions and see what God reveals to you about you. Let the message bless you.
"And he said, Who art thou? And she answered, I am Ruth thine handmaid: spread therefore thy skirt over thine handmaid; for thou art a near kinsman." Ruth 3:9
Ruth was a woman who demonstrated the laws of reciprocity. She lived a sacrificial life and as a result, God opened the heavens for her. Ruth was a young woman, young enough to remarry and bear children after the untimely death of her husband, but she chose instead to serve her destitute and distraught mother-in-law, Naomi. Even after Naomi urged Ruth to return to her family, Ruth denied herself that pleasure and maintained her loyalty to Naomi. Ruth became a seed. She didn't just sow seed; Ruth became seed in Naomi's life and God, who cannot be mocked, was obligated by virtue of His own word, to reward Ruth substantially.
Take a listen at today's podcast on the lesson of sowing and reaping as it pertains to Ruth's life and let it challenge you in any area where you may need it. Let it inspire you to be your best in all you do that God will take delight in you and bless your life accordingly.
Job 12:12, "With the ancient is wisdom; and in length of days understanding."
In this dispensation of time called, "Hurry up!" it is also incumbent upon us to slow down and listen. As a therapist in training, one of the skills I am learning to develop is a term called 'active listening.' Active listening involves using more than your ears to listen to your client, it also requires listening with your eyes, your mind, and your heart. Similarly, when graced to sit in the presence of someone blessed with the gift of wisdom, it is likewise helpful to utilize active listening. Why? Because a wise person imparts wisdom in a variety of ways. You can learn wisdom by the way they conduct themselves, by listening to their conversations, by studying their movements, and, believe it or not, by meditating on their mistakes. Yes, a wise person can you teach you a lot by the way they handle their mistakes.
The scriptures say that with the mature, there is wisdom, and among those who are older, is great understanding. I have found out that in many areas, those who have been engaged in a thing for a longer period time than you have can teach you a lot. We know that older does not always translate to wiser; however, we cannot deny that older does point to a person with more experience, good or bad. Therefore, active listening is a skill set to use when allowed to sit in the presence of a mature person. This will make for a learning experience, undoubtedly.
As a child, I would often find myself in trouble because I loved being around my elders. I was mature for my age because I had to grow up quicker than I should have so I felt more comfortable around older people than those my own age. I now know that God created a thirst within me for wisdom. Of course, my elders didn't always perceive it that way! And I got my share of rebukes for, "not staying in a child's place," but I could not deny what I gravitated to.
Being an elder now, I appreciate the gift of wisdom. I embrace those who have gone before me in a particular thing, and I also know when to stay in my lane and be quiet when wisdom is crying out to me from the lips of my elders. I found wisdom to be an intrinsic part of who I am and what humors me, even at this point in my life, is when I am in the company of someone whom I can impart wisdom to, and they cannot discern the difference. It is painful and reminds me of what the Preacher said in Ecclesiastes 1:18, "For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow." Listening is half the battle, and in some cases, determines who wins.
One of the things I often focus on is the word “inventory”. In fact, I hear myself often saying, “You have to take inventory,” and what I have found out is that not everyone knows what that means. When I say, “Take inventory,” I mean that each person should take the time to discover what God has placed inside of them.
My husband is a sales manager in the building industry. A few months ago, he was obligated to work a few Saturdays for ‘mandatory inventory’. It means that he and other staff had to take time out of their weekend to personally count every single item in the warehouse. Go figure! So, when I say, “Take inventory,” it means to take the time out of your life to count every skill, talent, gift, and ability God has placed inside of you. And check this, don’t even think for a moment that you can accomplish that on a Saturday afternoon. No, it will take the rest of your natural life to take inventory because you grow, develop, and unfold as a person every day. Again, you have to take inventory of who you are. When you do that, you identify what is in within you and THEN you are in better position to apply who you are in whichever environment you find yourself in.
Many times, when we hear the prophetic words that, “God is sending you to the nations,” for some reason, we define that to mean we are about to travel to some remote country somewhere and start preaching. Now, I am not saying that you shouldn’t do that, I will say that you shouldn’t limit yourself to ministering with a passport. When God sends you to nations, He is sending you to a certain group of people. These may be nations of women, men, and children. These may be nations of wealthy, impoverished, or underprivileged people. These may be different races, different mountains of culture, and nations of subcultures. Shall I go on? When you take inventory, discover what you are carrying, then you are properly positioned to do something with who you are. Listen, when you know what you carry, you won’t wait for someone else to PERMIT you to execute your purpose. Stopping here for now, but think about it!