The LOVE Test

 

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THE LOVE TEST – WE ALL HAVE TO PASS IT.

 WE ALL GET TO KEEP TAKING THE LOVE TEST AGAIN AND AGAIN.  

Are you able to LOVE like you’ve never been hurt?

Are you able to FORGIVE like you’ve been forgiven?

What is Love?  

Definition from Dictionary.com:

As a noun: a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person. As a verb:  to have a profoundly, tender, passionate affection for another person.

Definition from The Bible:

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged.  It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out.  Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

God is love.

 

About a year ago, I heard a great message on how to love and keep loving others after being hurt and wounded.  As a guest speaker at our church, Author and Pastor, Jentezen Franklin, spoke on the subject of his book entitled, Love Like You’ve Never Been Hurt. This book covers several issues, including loving others through problems and pain, overcoming hurts and wounds, continually forgiving others, and remaining free from a spirit of offense.  Jesus told us, “…it is impossible that no offenses will come.”  If you haven’t already had to forgive and pass the offense test, get ready my friend, you will. We will all eventually be tested in forgiving others and releasing a spirit of offense. Every relationship worth fighting for encounters overcoming the love and forgiveness test.

This is what I refer to as the true LOVE TEST.  It’s often easier to love those who never hurt our feelings, never disagree with us and have not grievously harmed or abused us or one of our close beloved ones.

Jesus told us we are to love our enemies and pray for them.  Some of us can’t even love our friends or family members, and forgive and pray for them.  

Help us all, Lord.

Pastor Jentezen shares candidly in chapter one of his book about the pain and heartbreak within his own family and the resulting love challenges. We all wish we could say, “I can’t relate.” “I can relate too!” and very likely can you and MANY others in our world filled with the walking wounded.  The crushing and pressing of our pain and suffering brings a spirit of humility, gentleness, and anointing that brings glory to Our Father. Tested leaders, teachers, and preachers who have passed the testing and trials of life, and especially the LOVE TEST, by overcoming and remaining faithfully committed to The Lord have a powerful anointing. This brings glory to God, and this is evident through Pastor Jentezen’s ministry.

I agree with Pastor Jentezen, as we allow God’s love to heal our broken hearts, “Love wins.”  Shared experiences, including the unlovely ones, empower us with the capacity to empathize with the suffering of others.  As we are able to relate, open ears and hearts are more inclined to listen as we offer God’s love, help and healing.

Our lovely and unlovely journey when shared in transparency can help open a door of truth spoken in love that sets other captives free – ultimately leading us all on the highway of freedom.  

Freely loving and leading as we have been freely loved and led.

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Arise & Shine – It’s Time!

Arise, shine, pray, speak and believe 

together with a spirit of boldness and 

humility.

It’s not for a show;

It’s for the One we know in intimacy.

Break off the fear of man

and step out in obedience to Me.

As you are led by My Spirit in full 

surrender, you will go forth in joy, peace 

and power for My honor, reverence, 

and glory.

Those who are led by My Spirit are those 

who are walking in step with Me.

Arise and shine my covenant sons and 

daughters. 

You were born for such a time 

as this

to shine My light for all to see.

 

September 4, 2018

 

“…so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people.” (Philippians 2:15)

 

“You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.” (Words of Jesus, Matthew 5:14-16)

 

“Obviously, I’m not trying to win the approval of people, but of God.  If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ’s servant.  Galatians 1:10

 

Other References:  Proverbs 28:1; John 10:4; 1 Peter 4:10-11

 

A Declaration Prayer of Commitment for 2019

During day 7 of our 21 days of prayer and fasting (January 12, 2019), while worshiping to the song entitled, “Christ is Enough” by Hillsong, I felt impressed to write out this prayer of declaration and commitment based on this song:

Christ is Enough.

Yes, Lord, may You be our

exceeding and great reward – Your PRESENCE and Your WORD alone.

May this be the NEW discovery we all seek after in 2019.

May You and You alone – Your presence and Your Word satisfy like never before – like NO THING in this world can or ever will.

Yes, through every trial, You are with us. You carry, You comfort, You guide, You strengthen, You give peace, and You even restore our JOY – Amen!

May 2019 be a year of only moving forward – a turning point.

May ALL OUR TRIALS OF THE PAST BEAR FRUIT – the fruit of more of Your character developed and growing in us – LOVE, JOY, PEACE, PATIENCE, KINDNESS, GOODNESS, FAITHFULNESS, GENTLENESS, and SELF CONTROL.

May our souls sing a NEW song this year!  A song of PRAISE and JOY!

Here is our decree for 2019 —

May we proclaim I’VE BEEN SET FREE!

May we ARISE and SHINE for all to see it is JESUS who is truly ALIVE in me.

You, LORD, are our HEALER, our SAVIOR, our REDEEMER, RESTORER, GOOD FATHER, FRIEND, LOVER OF OUR SOUL, COMFORTER, PROVIDER, PROTECTOR, DEFENDER, COUNSELOR – our PEACE – the Great I AM.  You alone bring great JOY.  Reveal who You are more in 2019.  You are ALL we need. Amen.

You are all we need in every situation, every decision, everything we face.  

RESTORE the JOY of our salvation – being saved – being your covenant son, being your covenant daughter – forever being loved by You, belonging to You.  Bring more of a revelation of Your amazing love and grace – Your goodness.  Let us REJOICE AND BE JOYFUL in this alone above all else.  You are our HOPE.  May our hope arise in Your Word and in Your promises – ALL our HOPE in CHRIST – in Your love that never fails us.  Let the  joy of what awaits us ultimately be awakened and strengthen our hearts, minds and spirits.  May this bring REST and PEACE to our spirits.  Forever in Your presence for all eternity.  

Through every storm, may our souls sing, You are always with us – to God be the glory!  Yes – Amen.  All has and is working together for our good and for Your glory and purpose.  May Your glory be on display, as You, Lord, are writing ALL our restoration stories for YOUR GLORY ALONE.

For all those who have decided to follow You, may this be a year of NO TURNING BACK.  May this be a year of following You, not people and not the world.  May we all fulfill our heart commitments, fully committed to You, Jesus.  May You, Lord, complete ALL You have begun in each one of us by Your Spirit – all for Your glory.

God, may the presence of Your Spirit guide us by peace and fill us with the joy of the Lord as our strength.

May ALL our steps be ordered of the Lord in 2019! Amen!  

“The eyes of the Lord search the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him…” 2 Chronicles 16:9

“Commit your actions to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.” Proverbs 16:3

Happy New Year JOY and ALL year too!

Happy and JOYful NEW YEAR to all! JOY is the word!

The Lord can still bring His “GREAT JOY” to all us peoples beyond Christmas!

May the presence of The Lord that brings JOY be with us all the whole year through!

More LOVE, More JOY and MORE peace – the fruit of God’s Spirit – we can all experience and overflow with.

We first receive His amazing LOVE and forgiveness and this brings JOY!

We keep pursuing His presence and we are filled with His JOY overflowing!

His never ceasing LOVE and the JOY of His continual presence bring peace to our hearts and minds.

☀️This is THE DAY THE LORD HAS MADE, let us choose to be JOYFUL and glad in it! 

☀️I am living out God’s WILL for my life by BEING JOYFUL in The LORD, PRAYING ABOUT EVERYTHING, and BEING THANKFUL IN EVERY CIRCUMSTANCE.

☀️I am not dejected or sad, because the JOY OF THE LORD IS MY STRENGTH!

See Psalm 118:24; 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18; Nehemiah 8:10*

☀️☀️☀️☀️☀️☀️☀️☀️

JOY has been the word for “Joyful Jenny” the past year or so.  Actually, God began speaking to me specifically about always being joyful in 2008.  In 2019, I now can also agree with our Pastor at Church of the Highlands, Pastor Chris Hodges, who has declared this “a year of JOY” and, specifically, a year of “Joy no matter what!” It is wonderful to have The Lord confirm you are hearing from God’s Spirit by speaking the same thing or even the exact words you heard in prayer from others within the body of Christ, and especially other godly leaders.  When God speaks by His Spirit, we hear as one.

The past few years, God has led me on a consistent pursuit of studying His Word more than ever as it relates to joy and how to remain joyful in the Lord, even amidst the little foxes that spoil our joy, as well as the more serious attitudes we have to face and address in order to remain full of joy no matter what!  I call these joy killers.  I am continuing to study and write about “Joy no matter what!” based on the book of Philippians and the order of references to JOY in the Old Testament.  A real RESTORATION OF JOY I am personally experiencing along with others (in our group entitled “Joy No Matter What! – yes, amen), as we keep pursuing MORE time in the JOY GIVER’s presence.

Here are just a few of these “JOY GIVERS” AND “JOY KILLERS” to ponder based on the Philippians study:

Joy Giver: Humility

Joy Killer: Pride

Joy Giver: Forgiveness

Joy Killer: Unforgiveness, Offense

Joy Giver: Seeking God’s Purpose

Joy Killer: Soaking in Self Pity

You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.  Psalm 16:11

*Here is what we hold each other accountable within our group to SAY OUT LOUD everyday for this JOY full day that the Lord has made!

THIS IS THE DAY THAT THE LORD HAS MADE AND I WILL REJOICE AND BE GLAD IN IT!

I AM FULL OF JOY, I PRAY ALL THE TIME AND I AM THANKFUL IN ALL CIRCUMSTANCES, BECAUSE THIS IS GOD’S WILL FOR ME.

I AM NOT DEJECTED OR SAD, BECAUSE THE JOY OF THE LORD IS MY STRENGTH!

May you walk joyfully in His will on this joyful day The Lord has made, and may His joyful presence be your strength for today.  Whatever occurs, may His JOY be yours!

Love, “Joyful Jenny”

 

A Christmas Poem

 

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Love has a name

and His name is Jesus.

God’s gift to mankind

and the only One who can free us —

from Satan’s bondage grip

and death to our spirits.

Light and life He brings

to all open hearts who receive Him.

Immanuel, God with us,

with great joy He fills us.

Born as a babe amidst the lowly in silence,

our Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father,

and Prince of Peace will return to receive us.

Our Savior’s triumphant return as King of kings will be heard and displayed

over all the earth loud and clear.

All who hear and respond to the gentle Savior’s calling

receive God’s greatest gift of Christmas.

Both fully God and man, and the One who reigns eternally,

He is The King and Lord of all, Jesus.

Our reason for celebration —

may all His children rejoice on Christmas Day

and forever in His presence!

 

JOY to the World

Lasting JOY is not found in presents, people, popularity, or material things.

Lasting JOY is found in the presence of the Messiah Savior, Jesus, and the King of kings.

This gift of “great JOY” to the world spoken of at this time of year can last no matter what we have lost, may or may not receive from others, or whatever circumstance we find ourselves in.

Don’t let this gift remain unopened and wrapped up neatly just to view from afar. Open your heart to receive this gift of love, peace and JOY

– this heart treasure that lasts forever.

You make known to me the path of life; in Your presence there is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Psalm 16:11

A prayer of great JOY for all:

Lord, fill me with Your presence this Christmas and the gift of Your peace and lasting JOY my heart is most desiring. Amen.

Jesus is with us always, even to the end of this age.*

I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow. John 15:11 ~words of Jesus

*See Matthew 28:20

Faith in the Waiting

Our faith is tried and tested in the waiting for answers to prayers and waiting to see promises fulfilled.

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In the waiting, we are transformed.

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In the waiting, hidden motives and attitudes of our hearts are revealed.

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In the waiting, our faith grows stronger.

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In the waiting, we grow stronger.

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In the waiting, we are challenged to grow deeper in Christ.

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In the waiting, there is a constant fight for our faith to waiver.

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In the waiting, the enemy schemes for us to fall into the trap of doubt, fear, compromise, worry, and soaking in self pity.

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In the waiting, Jesus calls us to the joy of His presence, while the enemy is calling us to a pity party.

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We have to keep on believing and trusting God and His Word without seeing.

This is faith.

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Do we still love, serve, and passionately praise and worship God while we are waiting on answers and promises we are believing and standing on?

We don’t love, serve or worship God based on His answering our requests. We love, serve and worship God because of Who He is.

God has already demonstrated His amazing love and faithfulness to us while providing for the forgiveness of our sins, salvation, and abundant and eternal life through Jesus Christ our Savior and Lord.

Our part now is to love Him back with “ALL our heart, soul, mind and strength” and to live “by faith and not by sight.”

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Wait in the Lord’s presence, beloved ones – in worship – in prayer – in The Word – and in faith – and be strengthened today.He is our exceeding great reward. Amen.

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*Pray and wait.

*Pray and worship.

*Pray and serve.

*Pray and believe.

*Pray in faith.

*Pray continually.

*Get stronger.

*Grow deeper.

*Wait on the Lord.

*The best is yet to come!

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Isaiah 40:27-31

Romans 5:8

John 10:10

Psalm 16:11

2 Corinthians 5:7

Mark 12:29-31

Genesis 15:1

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Worship in the waiting: