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Speak Life

But if Christ is in you, then even though your body is subject to death because of sin, the Spirit gives life because of righteousness. And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you. Therefore, brothers and sisters, we have an obligation—but it is not to the flesh, to live according to it. (Romans 8:10-12)

Join the Lord’s Army

This morning between 9:00 and 11:00 a.m. I will receive my third chemo treatment. These treatments consist of Benadryl to prevent the reaction I had the first treatment, a drug to help prevent nausea, steroids, and two different types of chemo. That’s an arsenal of meds!

I’ve heard many people refer to these treatments as poison. And perhaps it is. But that seems like a negative outlook to me. Now, I’m not one to follow the positive and happy thoughts crowd. But I do believe our words carry punch. We can speak life or death into any situation. I also believe God wants us to speak life not death.

How do we do that?

Speak the truth according to God’s Word. What does the Bible teach about the situation I’m in? God has given me life and in Him I have life abundantly. Jesus heals through many different means. He also has a plan. He has numbered my days…not the doctors.

Speaking truth and life involves a positive attitude. When it comes to the drugs with which they’re filling my body, I’ve decided to look at it through a different lens. God has given the doctors the knowledge of how to use these drugs to combat the disease that has invaded my body. Therefore, I think of these treatments as an army—God’s army if you will—sent to fight the war going on within me. The enemy is sneaky and strong. I didn’t even know he had attacked. But I’m grateful the doctors discovered the invasion when they did. That was an act of God to start with.

Now, He has sent an arsenal of meds to combat the poison already in my system. Yes, the meds destroy the good with the bad. That’s the sad reality of any battle. However when the battle’s over and victory won, the good is restored. I know the Master Builder and trust Him to reconstruct my body. He lives in me. He is the Commander of the army and the Restorer of my soul.

I live in victory.

How about you? How do you speak life in your situation?

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

 

 

 

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Advent 2016 Day 6

 And we know [with great confidence] that God [who is deeply concerned about us] causes all things to work together [as a plan] for good for those who love God, to those who are called according to His plan and purpose. (Romans 8:28 AMP)

Read: Genesis 37:1-36

Almighty God is He

Almighty God is He

It’s not hard to recognize Joseph as a type of Christ. Joseph was ridiculed, beaten, and betrayed by his brothers just like Jesus had been. Joseph was thrown into prison, which depicts the time Jesus spent in the tomb. When released from prison, Joseph rose in power and became the ruler of Egypt and all his brothers, second only to Pharaoh.

Similarly, when Jesus rose from the grave, He took His place beside God the Father and will someday rule all the nations, including Israel–His brothers.

Today, let’s worship Him for who He is … the sovereign King of the universe.

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

 

Generational Curses—Stop the Slavery

And when Peter was come to himself, he said, Now I know of a surety, that the Lord hath sent his angel, and hath delivered me out of the hand of Herod, and from all the expectation of the people of the Jews. And when he had considered the thing, he came to the house of Mary the mother of John, whose surname was Mark; where many were gathered together praying. (Acts 12:11-12)

Anger Paints an Ugly Portrait colorGenerational curses come in many forms from drug and food addictions to anger induced rage. Not every obese person, tyrant, or pedophile can claim their conduct stems from a generational curse. We all have a sin nature and basically choose the path we travel. But some of our characteristics are passed down from generation to generation as the Bible says, “The LORD is longsuffering, and of great mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression, and by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation” (Numbers 14:18). We learn and repeat the behavior patterns of those around us—good and bad. But generational curses go deeper into the soul than learned behavior.

How to recognize a generational curse:

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Next Week:

We’ll discuss Being Set Free through Recognizing Our Needs. Prepare by studying Luke 18:35-43.

See you in a twinkling,
Brenda K. Hendricks

Captive without a Cause

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” (Luke 4:18-19)

Accused and Enslaved

Accused and Enslaved

Have you ever been punished for someone else’s behavior? My mother told of a time when her mother’s horseshoe pen holder went missing. Grandmother lined up all of her nine children and questioned them. My mother found humor in the situation and couldn’t hold back her chuckles. Grandmother assumed her guilt and spanked my mother for stealing the pen holder. Shortly afterward the pen holder was found behind the piano. My mother had received unjust punishment for something she obviously hadn’t done. Her only crime was grinning at the wrong time.

Like my mother, Joseph’s descendants found themselves in predicament beyond their control. Although the new pharaoh didn’t remember Joseph, he feared the Hebrews. He considered them a threat simply because God had blessed them with a great population and a staggering amount of livestock. Pharaoh decided they needed to be controlled before they joined with neighboring nations and had opportunity to overthrow his empire. They remained in slavery for 400 years. That’s a long time to suffer for simply being in the wrong place with a smile on their faces. (See Exodus 1:4-18.)

Similarly, many Christians undergo spiritual captivity simply because God is blessing us and Satan wants to destroy our faith.

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Next Week:

We’ll talk about spiritual weapons, beginning with the one of our most powerful weapons. Prepare by reading and meditating on 2 Chronicles 20:15-23.

See you in a twinkling,
Brenda K. Hendricks

A Fate Worse than Identity Theft

Jesus said to them: “Watch out that no one deceives you. Many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am he,’ and will deceive many.” (Mark 13:5-6)

TheifA handsome young man speaking with the voice of an elderly woman announces his “paid vacation” in the Bahamas. The scenario grabs our attention and even provokes a laugh … until we realize what the commercial is really depicting.  Then we quickly sober up. Identity theft is anything but funny.

I have never been a victim of such a crime. But I know several people who have been. One of my friends recently discovered someone in South Africa had made substantial purchases on her credit card and had dipped his hand into her savings. Fortunately, her credit card holder notified her of the extreme charges and voided them as well as the card. However, the stolen savings were not so easily restored. Furthermore, the bank froze all of her assets to protect her other accounts. That’s a good thing, except she has bills to pay. The mess could take several months to cleanup and to release her money. How is she supposed to pay her bills without access to her checking account?

Like I said, identity theft is a serious crime and causes a nightmare of complications for the victim to resolve. But Jesus warned us about a much more critical form of identity theft …

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Next, we’ll consider another form of slavery. Prepare by studying Luke 4:17-19.

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

 

Suspended by Grace

This video is dedicated to my sister, Janie Neff Haines and her husband Gene Haines as a memorial to their son, Clint who was killed in a tragic motor cycle accident September 2013. May God’s sustaining grace continue to carry you forward into His everlasting presence.

With much love, Brenda

[youtube http://youtu.be/O5QErV44sRY]

 

Suspended by Grace

The brightness of the day succumbed to angry storm clouds. I scarcely noticed them. The turmoil bellowing within my soul created a far greater threat, shoving me to the very edge of destruction.

Stones shifted beneath my feet. I teetered, arms flailing to regain my balance. The crackling of debris cascading down the side of the cliff echoed through the valley. Several rocks crashed on the wall before splashing in the raging sea below. Was that to be my fate after all?

A scream … a cry of despair drew my attention eastward. At first one, then several close relatives slipped over the edge and plummeted toward the crag that stuck out of the icy water. “No!” I screamed with them. I stood paralyzed on the edge unable to do anything more than pray. I wanted to rescue them, to throw out a lifeline … something to prevent the inevitable. But I had no rope, no vine, no means of aide. Their screams tightened into shrieks and sobs … then silence. Their anguish-filled hearts impregnated the atmosphere with inaudible songs of grief.

Yet, instead of crashing into the sea, they floated above it as if suspended from parachutes. They rose and drifted farther eastward toward the sun. In the far distance, a beautiful city graced the horizon.

I suspected the refugees didn’t realize God’s grace had sustained them, not at first at least. But inch-by-inch they rose upward and eastward into the brilliance of His presence. As they live out the remainder of their lives, they radiate with an inner strength, of which they seem unaware.

I, also, suspected then, as I do now, that eventually I too will slip over the edge of despair. Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” I can trust Him in the darkest night, in the midst of the storm, in the depths of despair. He will keep His word. By the testimony of my friends and family who have lived through the horrors of this world, I see Jesus’ sustaining grace. And I know the breath of God will lift me up and propel me into His Light and eventually into His everlasting presence.

Thank you for viewing. Please share.

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

Prison or Training

Spiritual Warfare

Part 22

But while Joseph was there in the prison, the Lord was with him; he showed him kindness and granted him favor in the eyes of the prison warden. So the warden put Joseph in charge of all those held in the prison, and he was made responsible for all that was done there. The warden paid no attention to anything under Joseph’s care, because the Lord was with Joseph and gave him success in whatever he did. (Genesis 39:20b-23)

A Single TearDepression unjustly imprisons us within our own minds with no means of escape. Concentration becomes almost impossible, most routine task undoable. When I suffered this disease, I questioned daily, “Why, Lord, why am I going through this? What have I done?” I felt abandoned, useless, and helpless. Yet none of that was true. God promises to never leave us alone, and He faithfully stayed by my side even though I wasn’t aware of it at the time. God also said He has prepared us for work, and He used me to help others who were also going through depression at the time. And continues to use me to encourage others. God also says He will help us in the time of trouble. He empowered me to cope and to overcome the strongholds that held me emotionally captive. He is faithful even when we are in the deepest pit.

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Next Week:

We’ll look at the captivity of the Israelites. Prepare by reading, pondering, and praying about Exodus 1:8-14.

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks