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Today is Sunday, August 18, 2019

Nothing missing: Nothing broken

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If you looked at my life right now and all the problems we're having with our swimming pool that has caved in (built by Aloha Pools in Jackson) and my mother-in-law who has Alzheimer's and is bedfast in a nursing home, you may say, "You're not blessed". But, the truth is, being blessed does not consist of "no trouble and no pain". Being blessed is when you walk through the fire and you're not burned. So, yes, I am very blessed. God never promised us a life without problems, but he did promise he'd never leave or forsake us. He will walk through the fire with us.
We all want a prosperous and successful journey through life and in the book of John 3, we read where God wants the exact same thing for us. The question is, "Where does the prosperity and success in this journey come from?" I believe it comes from God who wants to bless you as much as you want to be blessed. I don't want to go through all these current issues, but God promises to give me strength. He is the one who brings us through to victory.
According to scripture, there are some fundamental laws that bring a blessing into our lives: "Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it" Malachi 3:10. That's pretty clear; our blessing comes from the LORD.
"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning" James 1:17. Again, very clearly, every good and perfect gift is from God.
John also said God wants us to be in good health. The first use of "be in health" is in Genesis 43:28 where it's translated "in good health." The Hebrew word for that whole phrase is shalowm. Most Christian's are familiar with the Hebrew word shalom. It means not only peace, quiet, tranquility and contentment, but also completeness, and soundness. It means to be whole. I've heard it described as "nothing missing, nothing broken."

God wants our lives to have nothing missing and nothing broken. We, on the other hand, are careless with our eating habits, our attitudes and our choices. The bottom line is that we often have something missing and something broken. But, God did not do it. His desire is that we prosper and be in good health even as our soul prospers.


What stands out to me in that verse is that he was not just concerned about our physical prosperity and physical health, but he wasn't he definitely concerned about the condition of our soul? Is our soul prospering and is it in good health? I don't believe he was wishing we would all be rich or never have a pain, but he clearly desires that we prosper and be successful in all areas of our lives, as our soul prospers. Why? Because that's where joy and peace and prosperity and a healthy attitude comes from. A soul that seeks and loves God can have that peace.
Whatever is in our heart is building our lives. If I don't take care of myself, I can't blame God if I become sick. If I don't have a charitable heart, I can't blame God for my financial problems. If my mind is filtered in a way that is contrary to God, it won't be able to receive God's word and life won't change.
Jesus said, "Be careful [anxious, worried] for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep [guard] your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you" Philippians 4:6-9.
These are the things God tells us to think about. This is the filter that will lead to our souls prospering. We must feed the soul with nourishment from God.
If what you're seeing, hearing, and thinking is causing you to be angry, fearful, or confused, none of which are from God, you must see, hear, and think something else instead.
If you don't like the harvest, change the seed. Jesus said, "These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world" John 16:33. We will get through our trials if we hold on to God; trust Him to deliver us from the fire, and do the things that lead soul prosperity and good health.
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