Paperback Now On Amazon

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This book is written from inside my crucible-trial. It is full of the rich insights the Lord gave me in order to navigate. It has 11 full color illustrations that I called my ‘warfare art’ which was my only Bible for months.

It is 14 short chapters and an epilogue. In the epilogue I chronicle some of the Lord’s miraculous interventions throughout my life, as well as in this recent trial. Available now in e-book and paperback. May the Lord be glorified.

 

The Power Of The Cross

Colossians 2:15 says, “Having disarmed principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it.” I love 1 Corinthians 2:8. It says, “Which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.”

It is in the power of His cross that we live daily in triumph over all sin-thoughts. In Romans 6 we have the foundational truths of Jesus death, burial, and resurrection. Verses 1-2 say, “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?”

The enemy of our soul was defeated through the cross. His only power is through deception. If he can get us to believe a lie, he can control our lives. Our thought-control is our responsibility. Romans 6:11 says, “Likewise you also, reckon yourselves dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” A dead person has no response.

When a thought to sin comes, when we remember we are dead to sin, we will not respond. It will have no power over us. Yesterday I was reading in Judges. Chapter 16 is a great key for us how the enemy works. The Lord of the Philistines said to Delilah: entice him, find out where his great strength lies, how we can overpower him so we can bind him to afflict him.

As I read the whole chapter I was thinking about how Sampson did not resist once. He was a Nazarite and had specific commands to follow. He was to never cut his hair. Note that in verses 16-17 Delilah pressed him until his soul was vexed. Then he finally told her the secret to his strength.

The secret to our strength is applying the power of the cross to every thought that would lead us into sin. All sin is first a thought. 2 Corinthians 10:5 says that we are to bring every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. That is our cross-triumph over the enemy’s suggestion and temptation to sin.

James 1:14 says that the enticement comes, but if there are hidden lustful desires in our heart, we will be drawn away through our own lusts. No one ‘makes’ us sin. Anytime we entertain a sinful thought, we will become ensnared. Here is a new song.

The Cross

I will sing of Your mighty love. I will sing of Your grace. You are faithful and You are awesome in power. In mercy You redeemed me. In Your love You remained. The cross was Your death so I could live.

You took my place. You bore my sin. You came in humility and You died the same. O the wonder and the power as You laid Your life down for me. The cross was Your cruel punishment. Though You had no sin. It was my sin that nailed You. My sins were judged on the cross. You died for me to destroy the works of the enemy.

O I praise Your name and I rejoice in You. I bow in worship. I kiss Your feet of love. My heart melts within me enfolded in Your grace. Yes I will praise Your name. I will praise Your name forever.

God’s Manna Provision

I have been reading “The Light and the Glory” by Peter Marshall and David Manuel. It chronicles God’s hand in the founding of America. We just celebrated Thanksgiving. The starving Pilgrims had a ration of 5 kernels of corn each that first winter of 1661-1662.

God’s manna provision for them was an Indian that spoke English. His name was Samoset. He then introduced them to Squanto. Squanto lived with them and taught them how to plant corn and live off the land. The first course of their second Thanksgiving was a plate with 5 kernels of corn on it as a reminder to them of God’s manna provision.

The Lord has manna provision for us as well. It often comes in an unexpected answer to our prayers. In March of 1977, I was reading in Philippians 1. As I came to verse 20, I fell on the end of my bed and cried out to the Lord. I wanted Him to be magnified in my body whether by life or by death. Two weeks later I fell headfirst into a 6 foot ravine. I didn’t remember that fall for 3 1/2 years.

How did the Lord answer my prayer through that fall? I was bedridden and unable to work for 6 1/2 years. Though I accepted the Lord as my personal Savior in 1958, He wooed me into an amazing, not equaled on this earth, intimate relationship with Himself. He also gave me a new asset: brain injuries that remain to keep me dependent on Him.

Our trials have manifold benefits. Ephesians 3:10 says that through them He displays His manifold wisdom. James 5:11 says that there is an end intended–that He might demonstrate His mercy and compassion as He did with Job. 1 Peter 1:7 says that our fiery trials purify our faith to prove it genuine.

Job was tested. His first response in his cascading trial reveals his heart to us. Job 1:21 says, “…The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.” Verse 22 says that Job did not charge God with wrong.

Next, Job lost his health. With his wife’s words, ‘Curse God’ ringing in his ears, his second response also revealed his heart. Job 2:10 says, “…Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?”

This morning I read Job 23:8-9. It says, “Look, I go forward, but He is not there, and backward, but I cannot perceive Him; when He works on the left hand, I cannot behold Him; when He turns to the right hand, I cannot see Him.” Job was longing to see the Lord in his circumstances. Yet, his faith words are recorded for us. Verse 10 says, “But He knows the way that I take; when He has tested me, I shall come forth as gold.”

The Lord tests our faith so we can see what is in our heart. I recently listened to a Voice of the Martyrs interview with Andrew Brunson. He is a missionary pastor in Turkey. I was so taken with his tried-faith. Though it was an imaginably hard trial, his faith remained. He would say, ‘The Andrew is Christ can…’ Though he was fighting fear daily, was emotionally spent, and he felt on the edge of insanity at times, his standing in Christ carried him through his two years in prison.

Lord, I ask You to help us discern and accept what You are doing in the trials that You allow in our lives. According to Your word, they are intentional and beneficial. Help us not resist but embrace all that You have for us in our trial. May we comprehend and grasp how our faith is truly steadfast in our standing in Christ, no matter what our circumstances are.

Contrasting Standing And State

I love Romans 5:3. It helps me remember the difference between my standing and my state. It says, “Through whom also we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand…” Ephesians chapters 1-3 define our standing, while chapters 4-6 define our state. In Ephesians 4:1 Paul said to walk worthy of our calling. Verse 2 says, “With all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love.”

We are eternally settled in our standing, but our walk (state) can fluctuate moment by moment. It depends on how deeply God’s word is implanted in our hearts. Psalm 119:11 says, “Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You.”

Our standing is continual, perpetual, with no break in continuity. However, our state can ebb and flow. Mark 4:17 is a great example. It says, “And they have no root in themselves, and so endure for a time. Afterward, when tribulation or persecution arises for the word’s sake, immediately they stumble.”

The children of Israel were to be circumcised. It was a sign that they were set apart for God. Colossians 2:11 says that we are circumcised without hands. Romans 2:29 says that circumcision is in the heart by the work of the Holy Spirit. This is the work of sanctification. At salvation (standing), we are set apart for the Lord. Our walk (state) is progressive, ongoing.

Romans 12:2 says, “And be not conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind…” JB Phillips says to not let the world squeeze you into its mold. The deeper we implant God’s word, the greater the depth of inner transformation. Metamorphosis is the process of the crawling caterpillar being transformed into an air bore butterfly. The difference is eating leaves (walking in the flesh) or drinking deeply of sweet, life-sustaining nectar (walking in the Spirit).

God’s words is living and active. As we bring it into our hearts, it will transform the way we think and act. His hidden word is our weapon to overcome the lusts of our flesh. 1 John 2:14 says, “…I have written to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God abides in you, and you have overcome the wicked one.”

This is our key to overcoming any fleshly stronghold. It is God’s implanted word, deeply rooted, that actively penetrates between our soul and spirit. It is like a skilled surgeon’s scalpel. It is precise (addressing our need) exact (no grey area) to bring the needed character quality transformation that will set us apart from the world’s system.

I invite you to my Facebook page, under Marilyn Adams, to read my daily devotionals.

God’s Implanted Word Revolutionizes

Isaiah 55:9 says, “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.” God’s word reveals His ways and His thoughts. When we bring His word into our heart, we are planting revolutionary seeds.

Think of His word in Hebrews 4:12. It says that His word is active, it penetrates, and it discerns. Now think about the areas of your life where you feel defeated, stuck in a rut, failing to gain victory over your renegade thoughts, and unsuccessful.

Here is the antidote. Psalm 1:3 says of the one who mediates, “He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither, and whatever he does shall prosper.” Joshua 1:8 says, “The Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”

Note the words ‘never depart from your mouth.’ Now let’s go to Matthew 15:18. It says, “But those things which proceed out of the mouth come from the heart…” Matthew 12:34 says, “…For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” What presently comes out of your mouth? Remember, all words are first thoughts.

What we hide in our heart affects every aspect of our lives. Hidden unresolved issues, bitterness, buried emotional pain, inner negative dialogue, and unforgiveness, all become the filter through which our words emerge from. Therefore, to be successful, thriving, and prosperous in all we do means inner core change. Only the implanted word has that kind of transforming power. Want to revolutionize your life?

Psalm 19:7 Amplified says, “The law of the Lord if perfect, restoring the (whole) person; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.” It is time to change the filter in your heart. Out with the old and in with the new.

The Power Of A Blessing

God’s word never changes. Joshua 1:8 says that we are to observe to do. Therefore, we need God’s wisdom to make His word applicable to our lives in our present situation. His wisdom will give us His perspective.

Before salvation, our flesh was unbridled and self ruled. Have you ever set your mind to do something and you were interrupted by someone else’s need? Did you react because your goal was blocked, or did you respond with spiritual flexibility?

Galatians 5:19-21 is a list of the works of the flesh. There are nine that pertain to fleshly attitudes: hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders. Verse 22 is the fruit of the spirit. It is visual, evident fruit of one who is controlled by the Holy Spirit. There are nine: love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. It is an intentional contrast to help us recognize who is in control at any moment in our lives.

We are called to bless those who are reacting in their flesh. 1 Peter 3:9 says, “Not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this…” Our fleshly reactions are evil. We bless one who is walking contrary to the Lord by NOT reacting in our flesh. Flesh has no power over the flesh. 2 Corinthians 10:4 says that we don’t fight with our flesh. We fight through the power of God’s word. We take up our weapon of the opposite spirit which quenches the fight. Where there is no wood, the fire won’t burn.

When our agenda, desire, or will is blocked we have a choice. We can react in our flesh, or we can respond in our spirit. In that moment of decision, if we remember Who redeemed us and Who we serve, we will respond as the Lord would have responded.

Ephesians 4:20-21 is a great governor for our attitude and actions. It says, “But you have not so learned Christ, IF indeed you have heard from Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus.” The Lord uses our adversities to train us to conform our thoughts, purpose and actions to His will in all things.

Any fleshly reaction within us is an opportunity to right then die to ourselves. Our hidden flesh is reacting to another’s flesh. It’s a good thing. We wouldn’t have known that was an unyielded part of our inner being unless we reacted. When God’s word is hidden in our heart, we will not sin in the moment of that flesh-temptation. His truth has taught us to stand and to keep on standing. We stand strong in our spirit because it is fortified by His word written in our hearts.