Walking in Godly Principles


Feature Photo of Dead Sea Israel By Dave Herring Upsplash.com

Walking in Godly Principles is a bi-weekly scripture of encouragement, subscribed by “…time with the master…”. Previously published on the front page of the site, it will now appear additionally, as a post.

If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others. Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers. Often, when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.

Please feel free to send in questions (see ‘Contact’) and comments (hit ‘Comments’ Button.)

The King and His Kingdom – Part Three


The King and His Kingdom Video

Session 3

Welcome to part 3 of the King and His Kingdom which we’ve entitled the Role of Husband. In the coming sessions, we’ll see what it is that God expects from our specific roles in the Kingdom.

In the last session we said the following:

  1. What are the benefits of living in His Kingdom? – In the Kingdom of God, we live according to His ‘rule’ or ‘government’ and the results are that we are a people that are blessed. His promises to us are ‘in Him’ and ‘in Him’, is the Amen! The more we walk in His principles, the more God’s authority will flow through us.

We become ‘agents’ (or vessels) of the Kingdom, here on earth – permitting/forbidding that which has been permitted or forbidden in the Kingdom of Heaven (Matt.16:19).

  • What happens when we do not live according to His principles? – Duet 28: 15-68 describes this situation only too well.  In short, the more we are in His will (His Government), the more we will experience blessings in this life and reward in the next life. This is also a measure of how God’s authority will flow through us daily (Psa.1:4-6).
  • Examples of Godly Principles – There are many of God’s principles to be found in His word. Why not spend a bit of time looking for them and be enriched as the Lord opens these principles to you? Try turning the principle around to discover why we are not living blessed lives.
  • What is the purpose of His Kingdom? – God uses His principles on this earth to refine us (Ph.2:12). Each difficulty we face, God has permitted into our lives so that we will turn to Him and be strengthened as we overcome them. (Rom.8:28). It is impossible for us to live according to God’s Principles in our own strength. We need the power of His Spirit to strengthen, teach and guide us.

All of this is being done in order to prepare us for the greatest fulfillment of prophecy – the ruling of the saints with Jesus over the “House of Jacob” in the millennial reign as seen in the book of Luke (Luke1: 33).

God designed marriage as the cornerstone of our society. When we “go and make disciples” (Matt.28:19-20), if we are married, we need the testimony of a solid marriage because we can only disciple others to the level we ourselves are with God.

Never before in history has there been such a need for examples of Godly marriages, as now. Therefore – what does God expect from us in our marriages?

Until we have some knowledge of the character of God, it is difficult to understand what He expects of us.  Next, it is important to understand what He desires from us in the long term, eternally speaking, before we will be able to perform according to His will.

God’s Government (The Kingdom of God)

In Isa.55:8-11 we see the fact that God is sovereign.  He is supreme and not accountable to anyone except Himself. We see in the books of Zecharia and Daniel that His government, another expression for His word or law, is beyond debate or question and is final and irreversible (Zech.14:9; Daniel 2:44). The Kingdom of God (His government) is a separate system under which God does that which pleases Him. We see this in the scriptures of Psalms and 1 Timothy (Psa.135:6; 1.Tim.6:15).  God himself is powerless to reverse His own Government (Is.40:8). Pray for a revelation to understand this fact to gain meaningful change in our lives. 

Anyone who obeys His government (or God’s Will) is blessed.  Anyone who does not walk according to His principles will struggle through life (Psa.1:1-3).  God is powerless to help the one who wilfully disobeys Him (Heb.10:26), yet His infinite mercy provides us with ‘grace’ – the power to obey Him.

His government is precise and exacting and has far-reaching and often devastating consequences for those who will not follow in it.

Clearly defined area

The role of the Husband, like the role of the Wife and that of the church, is specific and VERY CLEARLY detailed in the word of God.  There are NO grey areas, no aspects of uncertainty.  If Husbands have a heart’s desire to be the type of Husband God intends, he shall be blessed among all people.  If he does not have this desire, he needs to pray for it, because without it, he will struggle much in this life.  Not only will he suffer, but he may drag others into his situations.

Both the role of the Husband and the role of the Wife, are Godly principles

(We can refer back to Part 2—The King and His Kingdom)

Suitable Partner

Genesis 2:18 says that God decided that it was not good for man to be alone.  He needed a ‘helper’.  Someone to help him in his needs: spiritual, emotional, and physical. The animals were paraded before man and whilst he named them all, NONE WERE FOUND AS A SUITABLE HELP FOR HIM! (Gen.2:19-20).

God put Adam to sleep and created a helpmeet for him, from his own body … from a rib taken out of Adam.   The woman was “brought unto the man” she was given to him as his possession, and it was him that named her ‘woman’ (Gen.2:21-23).

She came from his rib, out of his side and this is symbolic that God intended her to always be at his side, to be an assistant to him and him alone.   Not a slave, who would walk behind him – or ahead of him to take authority – Husband and Wife are inseparably linked by their spirits, as a team working with, and for, each other. (Gen.2:24).

All of this is the government of God (God’s Kingdom) – Undisputable, irreversible, and final.

Understand your wife

The husband is commanded to live with his wife in an understanding way.  He is commanded to honor her.  He is commanded to treat her as a weaker vessel, yet as a joint heir to the blessings of eternal life. The scripture of 1 Peter tells us this should be so, in order that the husbands’ prayers will not be hindered (1 Pet.3: 7).

In addition to this, the Husband is commanded to teach his wife that which she desires to know. (1 Cor.14:35).

To live with one’s wife in an understanding way is to accept by faith that which the scriptures say of her. To pray for a Christ-like attitude toward her and the way she has been created – the husband always putting himself in his wife’s shoes.

Honor and love your wife

To honor one’s Wife according to the scripture is to esteem her in the HIGHEST degree – to maintain her dignity. She is a critical support to man:  such as a crucial body part for instance, without which a man would find life very difficult.  She is honored because she is critically part of man and because she is a gift from God (Prov.19:14). Not honoring the wife will limit God’s blessings on the husband (Mal.2:13-14).

Paul says that husbands should love their wives as their own bodies! – even as Christ loved the Church (Eph.5:25; 28; 33). He says in Colossians that Husbands should love their wives and not bear any unforgiveness (bitterness) towards them – neither for past or present circumstances (Col. 3:19).

The husband should be a provider for his wife and family (1 Tim.5:8). This not only materially, but spiritually and emotionally. He will be desirable because of his kindness (Prov.19:22).

To treat her as a weaker vessel is to accept that she is weaker physically, emotionally, and spiritually – but this should never be seen as a negative point (1 Peter 3:7). She is his partner. She compliments the usefulness of her husband and she is a co-heir of the grace of life.

She is treated as the weaker vessel because in order to perform her task as a helper – loving her husband, children, and managing the home (Psalm 31), she has to be sensitive.  Her role calls for sensitivity, but it can leave her vulnerable and therefore she needs understanding and protection.

But NEVER is she inferior in terms of her ultimate reward of eternal life, because in the Kingdom of Heaven there is neither male nor female. (Gal.3: 28).

God’s Line of Authority

The Husband is also the head of the Wife. Jesus is the head of the Husband and God is the head of Jesus. This is the word of God, whether we agree or not (1 Cor.11:3). Therefore, the husband is the spiritual authority of the wife.  He is to instruct her in the ways of the Lord, by word and by example.  (1 Cor. 14:34-35).

God seeks Godly seed from the covenant of marriage.  In the book Malachi, we see this is the SOLE OBJECTIVE of the union of marriage (Mal.2:15 NLT), but it is imperative to accept that this objective will only be achieved jointly.   The scripture says that the two are one. (Gen. 2:24).

As God’s chosen authority, never can a husband fulfill his role as a Christian unless he is fulfilling his role as a husband.

He has a very essential partner as assistant, spiritual, physical, and emotional support, in his wife.  It is almost like the pair who run the ‘two-legged’ race.  They can never be out of step, the stronger even carrying the weaker at different times.  However, that very ‘carrying’ must be done in the position that each of the partners occupies.  Individual roles should never be taken over or changed.

Our Role Models

Tragically today the family model is being poorly molded.  Beginning with our parents:  if we had a father who was dominated by our mother, we as children grow to accept that this is the norm.  The boys of the family will marry dominating women and the girls will dominate their husbands.  In some communities today ‘Fathers’ are scarcely ever seen, never mind fulfilling their roles – having left home to find employment in other areas.

The world, through the vast availability of media at its disposal, pounds our minds with all kinds of false impressions and possible worldly solutions, when all the time the only lasting and workable solution is the word of God. 

We face a ‘dog chasing its tail’ circumstance.  The professing church of today seems not to be able to teach the truth (The Gospel).  It seeks its help from worldly concepts and all this because it was never taught the true Gospel in the first place.

We as Christians need to take a firm stand in this last hour.  This situation must be reversed.  The best place to begin is in the family.  Husbands as the spiritual authority must be the initiators.

Next Step…

The beginning for the husband is to go earnestly before God and pray for the desire to change, whatever the cost.  Whilst this prayer may seem frightening; in terms of eternity, no price can be too great.  However, all of the effort of the husband to fulfill his role will amount to nothing, if it is not borne out of his relationship with God (Ps.127: 1).  Only in this way will he be the type of husband God wants him to be.

Right… let’s recap what we’ve shared this week:

  1. Knowledge of God – Never before in history has there been such a need for examples of Godly marriages, as now. To truly understand what God expects from us in our marriages, we need to have a knowledge of His character.
  2. God’s Government (The Kingdom of God) – God’s government or His word or law, is beyond debate or question and is final and irreversible. It is a separate system under which God does that which pleases Him. God himself is powerless to reverse His own Government. Anyone who obeys the will of God (or His government) is blessed.   Anyone who does not walk according to His principles, will struggle through life, yet still, God’s infinite mercy provides us with ‘grace’ – the power to obey Him.
  3. Clearly defined area – The role of the Husband, like the role of the Wife and that of the church, is specific and VERY CLEARLY detailed in the word of God. If husbands have a heart’s desire to be the type of Husband God intends them to be, they will be blessed among all people. If they do not have this desire, they need to pray for it, because without it, they will struggle much in this life, and may even drag others into their situations.
  4. Suitable Partner – God decided that it was not good for man to be alone.  He needed a ‘helper’.  Someone to help him in his needs: spiritual, emotional and physical. To be an assistant to him and him alone. Not a slave, following behind him – or ahead of him in a position of authority. Husband and wife are inseparably linked by their spirits – a team working with, and for, each other.
  5. Understand your wife – To live with one’s wife in an understanding way is to accept by faith, that which the scriptures say of her, praying for a Christ like attitude toward her and the way she has been created – the husband always putting himself in her shoes.
  6. Honour and love your wife – To honour one’s Wife according to the scripture is to esteem her in the HIGHEST degree – to maintain her dignity. She is honoured because she is critically part of man and because she is a gift from God. Husbands should love their wives and not bear any unforgiveness (bitterness) towards them – neither for past or present circumstances. Husbands should be providers for their wife and family. This, not only materially, but spiritually and emotionally. The wife’s role calls for sensitivity, but it can leave her vulnerable and therefore she needs understanding and protection, but NEVER is she inferior in terms of her ultimate reward of eternal life.
  7. God’s Line of Authority – According to God’s government, the husband is the spiritual authority of the wife.  He is to instruct her in the ways of the Lord, by word and by example. The scripture says that Husband and wife are one. The husband cannot fulfil his role as a Christian unless he is fulfilling his role as a husband. He has a very essential partner as assistant, spiritual, physical and emotional support, in his wife. Husband and wife should never be out of step in their roles, the stronger even carrying the weaker at different times.  The individual roles should never be taken over or changed.
  8. Our Role Models – Tragically today the family model is being poorly moulded. In some communities today ‘Fathers’ are scarcely even seen, never mind fulfilling their roles – sometimes having left home to find employment in other areas. The only lasting and workable solution for the marriage model is the word of God.  We as Christians need to take a firm stand in this last hour.  The best place to begin is in the family.  Husbands, as the spiritual authority, must be the initiators.
  9. Next Step… – The beginning for the husband is to go earnestly before God and pray for the desire to change, whatever the cost.  The effort of the husband to fulfil his role will amount to nothing, if it is not borne out of his relationship with God.  Only in this way will he be the type of husband God wants him to be.

Please join me soon for PART 4, where we will explore some more principles of the Kingdom of God. Be blessed during this coming week – I look forward to being with you soon.

The King and His Kingdom. Part 2a.


The King and His Kingdom Video

Session 2a

In previous sessions we’ve looked at the Kingdom of God and how it is that as we obey God’s principles, (or His Government), we are blessed by Him (Psa.1:1-4). We also saw that as we drift out of His principles in our day, God is not able to bless us – this is because His Government is indisputable, irreversible, and final. We see in the books of Zechariah and Daniel, that His government, or another expression for His word or law, is beyond debate or question, whether we agree with it or not! (Zech.14:9; Daniel 2:44).

God desires to bless you and me on a daily basis, but if we do not adhere to His principles, His own government prevents Him from doing so. If He were to bless someone who is acting outside of His Government, then He would be obliged to even bless the accuser of the believers, the devil – a situation He cannot have!

The more we obey these principles, the more we feel the character of God in us, and the more we walk in His authority.

These Godly principles need to be real in our lives. If they are not real, practical and easily understood, then our daily walk with the Lord becomes a farce – an act for the world – which we struggle to maintain in our strength on a daily basis. No – our relationship with God needs to be a true reflection of blessing to us and those around us.

In our daily lives, we will not be perfect in our display of God’s principles. As we miss the mark with God, provided we are truly sorry, we receive forgiveness. As He forgives us, God intends for us to learn from the error of our ways and His amazing grace will help us to continue our day, without guilt.

If the Lord’s principles are near to our minds on a daily basis, it will help us to walk closer to Him – help us to be more aware of the path to glory.

Let’s take a look at some of these Godly principles which make up God’s government and see how we measure up to them. Perhaps this will give each one of us an indication of why we are not being blessed by God as much as we could be?

Please remember there are many more principles in His word than what we are looking at in this session. Let’s try and prayerfully sit with the Lord on a regular basis, asking Him to reveal others to us, so that we become more aware and more blessed.

Mat 5:13 “You are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has become tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men.”

Are we being an example for the Kingdom of God on a daily basis? How do we reflect God at home and work? And what about in our daily relationships – family and work colleagues?

Mat 5:25 “Make friends quickly with your opponent at law while you are with him on the way, so that your opponent may not hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the officer, and you be thrown into prison.”

Do we have any issues with others that have been left unattended? The scripture says deal with it now or it may turn into something worse.

Mat 5:27 “You have heard that it was said, `YOU SHALL NOT COMMIT ADULTERY’;

Mat 5:28 but I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

The Lord shows us here that sin has been committed in our hearts even as we think about doing something wrong. This, before we have physically done anything!

Mat 5:37 Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.

How do we answer others in our daily communication? Deceitfully – or truthfully and to the point. Interesting that Jesus says “anything beyond this comes from the evil one”!

Mat 5:42 Give to the one who asks you and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.

Do we feel the need to judge how others are going to use that which we give them, instead of just giving and allowing God to be their judge?

Mat 5:43 You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’

Mat 5:44 But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,

Rom 12:14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.

How did we react the last time someone was negative towards us in our day – did we pray for them or get angry with them?

Rom 12:16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.

It’s very difficult to live alongside others if we are proud and conceited. We will always feel that we are superior.

Rom 12:17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody.

Rom 12:18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.

Rom 12:19 Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.

How many times when we are offended by another do we want to take revenge? God says it’s His job to judge and avenge others.

Rom 13:1 Every person is to be in subjection to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except God, and those which exist are established by God.

Rom 13:2 Therefore whoever resists authority has opposed the ordinance of God, and they who have opposed will receive condemnation upon themselves.

It’s very easy for us to disobey or be deceitful to those in authority over us. Mankind may not see – but God does! Are we receiving condemnation from God because we disobey those He has put in authority over us?

Php 2:4 not looking each of you to his own things, but each of you also to the things of others.

Php 2:14 Do all things without murmurings and questionings:

Php 2:15 so that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world.

Going about our daily tasks without having negative comments or thoughts is very difficult. God says we should see where we can serve others instead of criticizing them. 

In your group now, please read the following three sections of scriptures out aloud together. At the end of each section, pause and discuss for 10min what you have read together. After your 10min discussion, read the next section.

SECTION 1

Rom 14:13 Therefore, let us not judge one another anymore, but rather determine this, not to put an obstacle or a stumbling block in a brother’s way.

Rom 14:19 So then let us follow after things which make for peace, and things whereby we may edify one another.

1Co 10:32 Give no occasions of stumbling, either to Jews, or to Greeks, or to the church of God:

1Co 13:4 Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant,

1Co 13:5 does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered,

1Co 13:6 does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth;

1Co 13:7 bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

1Co 13:8 Love never fails…

Rom 12:15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn.

Rom 12:20 On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

SECTION 2

2Co 9:6 Now this I say, he who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully.

2Co 9:7 Each one must do just as he has purposed in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God, loves a cheerful giver.

1Pe 2:15  For such is the will of God that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men.

1Jn 3:18  My Little children, let us not love in word, neither with the tongue; but in deed and truth.

Pro 11:15  He who is a guarantor for a stranger will surely suffer for it, But he who hates being a guarantor is secure.

Pro 11:28  He who trusts in his riches will fall, But the righteous will flourish like the green leaf.

Pro 12:1  Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, But he who hates reproof is stupid.

Pro 12:15  The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, But a wise man is he who listens to counsel.

Pro 13:18  Poverty and shame will come to him who neglects discipline, But he who regards reproof will be honored.

Pro 14:29  He who is slow to anger has great understanding, But he who is quick-tempered exalts folly.

SECTION 3

Pro 15:1  A gentle answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up anger.

Pro 15:6  In the house of the righteous is much treasure; But in the revenues of the wicked is trouble.

Pro 15:27  He who profits illicitly troubles his own house, But he who hates bribes will live.

Pro 16:7  When a man’s ways are pleasing to the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.

Jas 1:23  For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror;

Jas 1:24  for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was.

Jas 3:8  But no one can tame the tongue; it is a restless evil and full of deadly poison.

Jas 3:9  With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the likeness of God;

Jas 3:10  from the same mouth come both blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be this way.

Php 2:3  Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves;

Mat 5:11 Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.

Rom 8:6  For the mind of the flesh is death, but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace:

Php 3:20  For our citizenship is in heaven; whence also we wait for a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:

Remember – as we adhere to these principles daily, we will be blessed. I pray that the Lord has ministered some ‘pearls of wisdom in this session. These Godly principles for our daily lives are very difficult to adhere to if we try in our own strength.

As we enter into the Kingdom of God here and now, we have acknowledged that our old sinful nature (the engine that drives us to sin), has died and been buried with Jesus. Let us begin to walk in the new resurrected nature that God has given us.  This is the nature that is able to walk daily in God’s principles.

Please join me next week, for PART 3, where we will start to look at the roles God would like us to fit into. Be blessed during this coming week – I look forward to being with you soon.

If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others. Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers. Often, when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.

Please feel free to send in questions (see ‘Contact’) and comments (hit ‘Comments’ Button.)

Hold My Emotional Hand


We are naturally self-centred and therefore it is not easy for us to accept negative things that other people say about us. When we do not agree, the built-in instinct to defend ourselves, criticise situations and blame others, raises its head.

This is true of us in our general lifestyle – our daily work place and at home. It seems the closer to ‘home’ (family members) we are, the more sensitive and explosive our reaction can get.

Why is this happening to us?

Pride, when born out of the Adam nature, causes us to react in a negative way when we are offended. Once offended, our reaction is either anger, retaliation, withdrawal or feelings of guilt.

One of the natural characteristics that we are born with, pride, comes to us from the fallen nature of Adam. It is interesting that Adam was created in the Image and Likeness of God. This image and likeness showed the true nature of God reflecting in Adam. He could not only see God, but could fellowship directly with Him. Adam’s way of thinking was based in God’s nature.Pride

When they disobeyed God, Adam and Eve lost their Image and likeness of God. The self-centred ‘Adamic’ nature was then transferred down the line of humankind to us today. All the human cultures we know today were born out of this fallen nature, which is not restricted to certain races – ALL of humanity have received it.

That is why we tend to react in a negative way when things don’t go according to the way we want them to.

If we have people in our midst that always appear to be irritating us, we need to either continue with the relationship and endure the misery (for however long), or we need to confront the situation and ask God to help us deal with it.

Let us look at the example of a person or persons who we don’t seem to get on with. The closer that person is to our heart, the stronger the irritation to us. For those who are not close to us, we may tend just to brush them aside or at least not have contact with them for the majority of our day. Those we love are closer to us and it is not so easy to merely brush the situation ‘under the carpet’, so to speak.

Let us think about this ….
If the person who is the source of our irritation were physically ill with a terminal sickness, how would we react to them? Perhaps if they were not close to us, we may still tend to push them one side. However, if they were close family members, surely we would find ourselves caring for them. Doing whatever we can to make their lives that bit more comfortable.

Why is it then when these people, so close to us, have emotional characteristics we do not agree with, we seem to take offense? It appears the last thing we want to do is to ‘nurse’ them through the emotional illness, as we would do with a physical illness.

If we love a person, we want to see them physically healthy. Surely, it stands to reason therefore, that we would want Emotional Healthto see them emotionally healthy?

Is the prideful Adamic nature in us preventing us from nursing our loved ones’ emotional character? If this emotional imperfection were terminal in that person, would we turn our backs on them?

Let us seek the Lord and ask Him to help us begin to live out of the new (Godlike) nature within us and not the old Adam nature. As God’s nature in us grows and strengthens, we will show more Godly fruit in our lives and have more compassion in circumstances. Patience is earned, not given to us by God. He gives us grace (unmerited favour) to overcome.

From: “time with the Master…”

“…time with the Master…” is an on-going series of teachings, about lifestyle in the Church and is published bi-monthly.
If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others, Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers and very often when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.

Please feel free to send in questions (see ‘Contact’) and comments (hit ‘Comments’
button).

Our daily Garden


As we travel along our daily road of life, we can find ourselves, broadly speaking, in one of two states of mind – filled with fear and anxiety or abiding in the peace of the Lord.

Let us imagine walking into a neatly laid out vegetable garden. The rows of plants are straight, and access between them and down the rows, is very easy. As we walk between the beds, we see lovely tomato bushes on either side of our path. Looking further ahead, we notice that all the vegetable gardens contain the same vegetables on the left and on the right – all perfect and looking delicious.

Temptation is too great and eventually we decide to pick a lovely bright red tomato from the bed to the left of us. Imagining the taste, we are about to experience, we take a large bite and begin to swallow. Our system is suddenly shocked!! The taste is anything but what we imagined! A bitterness like we have never experienced before. Trying to spit the contents out of our mouths does not really help as the bitter acid settles down into our stomachs – wow! The taste lingers and in fact, everything we think of at that point is affected by the sourness of the flavour in our mouths and stomachs.Vegetable Garden 2.png

A short time passes, and we recover. Looking at the tomato plants in the opposite bed, we are tempted to try again, because they look so beautiful. From the opposite bed, we gently break off another tomato. Cautiously, we venture another taster. What an amazing difference! So juicy and pleasant. We hurry for the next few bites until the tomato is finished! It settles in our stomachs beautifully… and so satisfying!

Why are the two plants so different? Surely it must be to do with the type of food the roots are drawing from the soil.

Our path in life is very similar. Either we will feed from fearful situations or we will feed from peaceful situations. The ‘veggie garden’ of life, from which we will select, has been planted either by God or by the Evil One. The Vegetable Garden 3.pngsituations of life that the evil one would distract us with, are sown in fear (the sour tomato). He offers opportunities based in fear (like the acid soil), which, on the outside appear normal, but finding ourselves in those given situations, we start to feel fear of failure, fear of non-conformance and fear of physical things (phobias). It is whilst we are in fear that we are weak and vulnerable.

Weakness brought on by fear is not a sin but could certainly lead us into sin if not dealt with in the early stages. Anger is a fruit of fear. We become angry as a reaction to something which brings fear to us. Then we may well act differently to our norm, as a result of that fear.

Situations that God would bless us with are grounded in grace and peace. Jesus came to this earth to restore the things that were lost to mankind in the garden of Eden. Our old sinful nature was one of those things. He not only came to take our sins away, but to give us a new heart with rightful desires.

The old sinful nature is a magnet for the evil one’s distractions. He simply sows a fearful thought into our minds and as we accept it, the sourness invades our inner man and then everything we see, every action we perform, becomes tainted with bitterness. Fear requires more fear to feed itself, otherwise it will fade.

As our lifestyle transforms to be more like Jesus, we live more ‘in Christ’. The more we live ‘in Christ’, the more we will eat from the ‘veggies’ of Grace and Peace.

We need to make a conscious decision to daily walk out of our new nature – the ‘Christ’ nature. Why should we remain in our old nature, which is so attracted to fear, when we can daily walk in HIS grace, forgiveness and peace?

Remember, the veggies all look the same. If we choose from the wrong bed, we will very quickly know. Instantly spit out the sourness and replace it with a vegetable of grace and peace. Feed off HIS vegetables and we will experience peace and forgiveness.

From: “…time with the Master…”

“…time with the Master…” is an on-going series of teachings, about lifestyle in the Church and is published bi-monthly.
If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others, Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers and very often when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.

Please feel free to send in questions (see ‘Contact’) and comments (hit ‘Comments’
button).

Mission Malawi – Chapter Twelve


Back again

Kathy, I and the family (increasing again by the way!!), have finally arrived back in Malawi after being away for 4 months.

We returned to find our precious brother Jacob Arthur quite tired but very, very blessed. He had been kept on his toes by the various situations which were brought about to allow him to grow in his faith! This included two robberies and other testing things.

The brother who stole the bike, radio and money from us just after we left for South Africa, was forgiven and came back to work in order to repay the money he stole. He stayed for two weeks and did exactly the same thing again. As a result our little ‘grocer’ business took a real dive. However, in the Lords time things have got back to normal and most of our regular customers are back.

Continue reading “Mission Malawi – Chapter Twelve”

Mission Malawi – Chapter Ten


Field Trip – Continued:

Tuesday, 15th November.

We were shown to continue our trip the next morning and as we were preparing to leave, one of the committee members at the church came to greet us. She made a presentation of K50.00 to us on behalf of the church. 

 Deeply touched, we gratefully received the gift. To us, the amount of money held no importance because we knew that God had a purpose for that money. What was wonderful was that the people had given freely to complete strangers and we know that God will bless them for that step of faith .

 As we began to walk out of the town we saw the house of a Pastor whom we had met the night before. We felt that he had so warmly welcomed us, that it would be very bad of us not to bid him farewell. During the course of sharing with him, he blessed us with K20.00, and on the way out his wife gave us another K5.00 to buy bananas. God is truly wonderful, and even plans our menus for us if we listen carefully!

 We received a lift to a small place called Nkhamenya, where the driver insisted we pay him K20.00. This we did and were soon picked up again by a very large transporter truck. This truck was on the way to Tanzania and the driver told us that we were very “lucky” because he never stops for people.

 We explained to the Tanzanian driver in our best Swahili (which is nonexistent, but sign language for ‘God’ is universal!), that it was the Lord who had touched his heart to stop for us. We shared in this manner for a while and after giving us a ‘coke’ to drink they stopped the truck on top of the Vipya Plateau to share their lunch with us.  Lunch was prepared and served underneath the large trailer of the truck as we sat on the tarmac. Looking out over the baking African valley below, God’s awesome power was very evident.  As mere humans, we are absolutely nothing compared to His great and mighty power, yet His love for us is so great. How were we to know that we would be having lunch under such circumstances.

 The driver dropped us off in Mzuzu without charging us any money. This is a miracle, because in Malawi many white tourists hitchhike throughout the country and because the country is poor, drivers of vehicles, private or company owned, are looking for an extra means of income. Especially where a white person is concerned because they are perceived as being “rich”.

 Consequently, those who saw us together presumed that I was a wealthy tourist with my personal guide! Nevertheless, God knew the truth and watched lovingly over us day and night. That night we were welcomed at the house of another Reverend. His family cared for us, fulfilling our needs so that we were able to continue our trip refreshed early the next day.

Wednesday, 16th November.

Our first stop the next morning was the post office. It was my son’s birthday in four days’ time and I was sad at the thought of not being with him. Titus and I had prayed the day we started the journey that God might give us funds to buy an envelope and stamp so that we could send my son a note of encouragement. God understands our family relationships. He saw my love for my son, and being a Father Himself, had blessed us with the money the day before so that I could send a little letter to him. After posting the letter we waited for the next part of our journey.

 A hardware company truck gave us a lift to Rhumpie, a small town under the Nyika Plateau. As we descended the weather became very hot. We had no shade in the back of the truck. The truck stopped in the middle of the dusty little town, and we duly paid another K20.00 for transport. It was midday.

 On our way in we noticed a small church and decided to see if we could find anyone home. The Pastors wife greeted us and sent for her husband. After drinking many glasses of water and explaining ourselves, the Pastor literally ran out to go and call the members of the community together. He insisted that I rest on a canvas deck chair in the shade of the church building. He said, “I know mzungus (white people) like to rest after lunch”. I did not have much trouble obeying him, after all, he was an elder of the local church and I as a visitor, must fall under his authority!

 Most of the rural Malawians are a bit apprehensive about hosting white people because of language and cultural problems. God had taught me through Titus and other precious Malawian brothers and sisters, how to adapt to many of the customs and foods. As I conformed, the people were made to feel more at ease with me and again there was testimony in our words by God’s grace alone.

 I really began to understand that the “authority” which has been given to us through Christ Jesus is not some ‘mystical’ power, but is in fact, the lifestyle we lead. It was said of Jesus, “…He was teaching them as one having authority…”. Demons were afraid of Jesus because they knew He was ‘dead’ to the things of the ‘flesh’ and He would not give in to their temptations.  We too, as we begin to live a laid down life, (dying to the things of a ‘selfish life’), will show the authority of Christ through us. That is why it was important that God’s son was in every way a man, so that we might have an example to follow.

 A group of ladies gathered and we were able to share some precious things concerning their marriages and their roles as wives. All were extremely blessed and stayed for over two hours in the heat. As we started to finish, the men began arriving after work, so the ministry continued until evening. They were all amazed to see that I would actually bath in their traditional way and enjoy the food. The heat remained until about 9:30pm when we finally finished ministering, exhausted, but mightily blessed.

This is a series from the journal of young missionaries and written by ‘…time with the Master…’ A portion of the journal is published bi- monthly. Why not take up the journey from Chapter One.

If you feel this article has value, please send this link to others, Writings are meant for people, not for dormant files in our computers and very often when we share them, it results in positive changes in the lives of individuals and communities.

Please feel free to send in questions (see ‘Contact’) and comments (hit ‘Comments’
button).

 

 

The Business of God’s Love – Part One


In line with the desire to make our walk with the Lord more practical, let’s look at the second most important commandment…..Love your neighbour as yourself. Most of us have heard these words many times, but have we really understood what Jesus meant? In order to appreciate His command, we need to see how it is that God intended us to love others.

Continue reading “The Business of God’s Love – Part One”

Mission Malawi – Chapter Six


Publisher’s Note:
I was unable to download original pictures from the Malawi collection, for technical reasons and hope to have this sorted by the next issue. Thank you for bearing with us in this challenge.

The instances of ministry are too numerous to mention during this time of the restaurant. I was able to minister daily to the people who were working in the business as well as the customers. Many refugees from Somalia, Mozambique and Rwanda came to eat and received spiritual food as well. Some were healed of sicknesses as we prayed for them during our time of work.

Continue reading “Mission Malawi – Chapter Six”

Mission Malawi – Chapter Five


Publisher’s Note:

I was unable to download original pictures from the Malawi collection, for technical reasons and hope to have this sorted by the next issue. Thank you for bearing with us in this challenge.

Continue reading “Mission Malawi – Chapter Five”