Tag Archives: intimate relationship with God

The Blessings of God

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DRAWING WATER FROM THE WELLIsaiah 58:11 NKJV

“the Lord will guide you continually,

And satisfy your soul in drought,

And strengthen your bones;

You shall be like a watered garden,

And like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail.”

God will bless us spiritually, emotionally, physically and materially. A blessing is receiving something that brings comfort and joy. When we are blessed we are favored by God.

When We Have An Intimate Relationship With God He Will Bless Us

Psalm 91:14 NKJV

“Because he has set his love upon Me,

Therefore I will deliver him;

I will set him on high, because he has known My name.”

God will bless those that He knows and those who have an intimate relationship with Him. When we set our love upon God He will show us His favor and bless us by delivering us and setting us in a place of protection.

Because of our relationship with Him God will answer us when we call upon Him. In times of trouble He will deliver us and He will honor us. Our intimate relationship with God will also cause us to be blessed with a long life, and God will show us His salvation.

 

Psalm 91:14-19 NKJV

“Because he has set his love upon Me,

Therefore I will deliver him;

I will set him on high, because he has known My name.

He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him;

I will be with him in trouble;

I will deliver him and honor him.

With long life I will satisfy him,

And show him My salvation.”

The blessings, favor, and benefits that we receive from God because of our relationship with Him are endless. He will provide for us in every area of our lives.

 

Deuteronomy 11:13-15 NKJV

“And it shall be that if you earnestly obey My commandments which I command you today, to love the Lord your God and serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul, then I will give you the rain for your land in its season, the early rain and the latter rain, that you may gather in your grain, your new wine, and your oil. And I will send grass in your fields for your livestock, that you may eat and be filled.”

The Beautitudes

Luke 6:20-22 NKJV

“Then He lifted up His eyes toward His disciples, and said: “Blessed are you poor, For yours is the kingdom of God.
Blessed are you who hunger now, For you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, For you shall laugh.
Blessed are you when men hate you…”

 

Matthew 5:1-12 NKJV

“And seeing the multitudes, He went up on a mountain, and when He was seated His disciples came to Him.
Then He opened His mouth and taught them, saying:
“Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn, For they shall be comforted.
Blessed are the meek, For they shall inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, For they shall be filled.
Blessed are the merciful, For they shall obtain mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart, For they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers, For they shall be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you, and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake.
Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great is your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

A beatitude is a pronouncement of some blessing that we will receive when we follow Jesus’ example and allow God to shape our thoughts, words, and actions. It should bring joy to us when we know that God is pleased with us.

The world would have us to believe that we are blessed if we are happy and have a lot of things. But God says that we are blessed if we relinquish our pride, have a mindset characterized by meekness, and look to Him for spiritual significance. True blessings come from being like Jesus – gentle and humble.

1. God will bless those who are poor in spirit. When a person is poor they are lacking or in need. When we realize that we are poor in spirit and that we are dependent on God, His mighty power is available to us, and we find favor with Him! God desires that we realize that we are dependant upon Him

2. God will bless those who mourn. When we mourn we feel or express sorrow or grief.

Isaiah 57:15 NKJV

“For thus says the High and Lofty One

Who inhabits eternity,

Whose name is Holy:

‘I dwell in the high and holy place,

With him who has a contrite and humble spirit,

To receive the spirit of the humble.

And to receive the heart of the contrite ones’ ”

Contrite means that we are broken in spirit by a sense of guilt. It also means showing deep regret and sorrow. When we are truly sorry that we have sinned against a holy God, God will receive us, comfort us, and forgive us.

When we receive salvation the Holy Spirit (the comforter) comes to live in us. He will be our companion and help us in times of trials and troubles.

3. God will bless those who are meek. When a person is meek they are not easily angered, are patient and are yielding. We must not get being meek mixed up with being weak. They are two totally different things.

When we see ourselves the way that God sees us it will cause us to be meek. We will no longer focus on ourselves, instead we will focus on God and others. God will bless us when we put Him first.

Psalm 37:11 NKJV

“But the meek shall inherit the earth,

And shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace.”

4. God will bless those who hunger and thirst for righteousness. Righteousness means always thinking and acting in a way that is just, right, and good. When we have a very strong desire (need) to live in such a way that pleases God and brings glory to Him we will be filled. When we are filled with God and the things of God there will not be room for anything else.

When we hunger and thirst for righteousness we will want more of God. This desire will cause us to spend more time in prayer, reading the Bible and in worship.

2 Corinthians 5:21 NKJV

“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

1 John 2:29 NKJV

“If you know that He is righteous, you know that everyone who practices righteousness is born of Him.”

When we receive Jesus as our Savior we receive His righteousness, and with it comes the power to live right (to think and act in a way that is just, right, and good).

5. God will bless those who are merciful. Mercy means not to punish someone when they deserve it.

The dictionary describes mercy as more kindness than justice requires; kindness beyond what can be claimed or expected; kindly treatment; pity; something to be thankful for.

Merciful means having, showing, or feeling mercy; full of compassion. When we forgive others and show them kindness when they don’t deserve it we are being merciful.

God has been merciful to us by giving His Son Jesus to take our punishment for our sin. Because of the great mercy that was shown to us we must also be merciful to others, even when they disappoint us or hurt us.

A person that is merciful will also reach out to help others in need. When we show mercy to others we will be blessed with God and others being merciful to us.

2 Samuel 22:26 NKJV
“With the merciful You will show Yourself merciful;

With a blameless man You will show Yourself blameless.”

6. God will bless those who are pure in heart. Pure means not mixed with anything else, genuine, perfectible clean, spotless, without defects, correct, with no evil, without sin, or, chaste (virtuous, decent, or modest).

God wants us to be pure in heart. We cannot be pure in heart if we try to mix the things of God (and our relationship with Him) with evil or sinful things of the world. When we accept Jesus as our Savior and Lord we become the temple of God. God will not share His house with evil, therefore we must be pure in heart.

It is more important to be clean on the inside (pure heart) than it is to be clean on the outside.

Matthew 23:25-26 NKJV

“Woe to you scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you cleanse the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of extortion and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisees, first cleanse the inside of the cup and the dish, that the outside of them may be clean also.”

People can only see us our outside, but God see us on the inside. Being clean inside where God sees and being clean outside where people see are both important to God. He wants us to take good care of ourselves, but being clean on the inside where only God sees is most important to Him.

No matter how good we try to be on the outside, without God’s forgiveness we are still dirty and impure on the inside.

1 John 1:9-10 NKJV

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.”

The first thing we need to do to become pure at heart is to realize and admit that we are not. After we realize that we need to be pure at heart, all we have to do is ask God to forgive us ) and cleanse us. The Bible tells us that if we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. God will give a pure heart if we ask Him to.

Psalm 51:10 NKJV

“Create in me a clean heart, O God,

And renew a steadfast spirit within me.”

7. God will bless those who are peacemakers. A peacemaker is a person who makes peace. The dictionary describes peace as freedom from strife of any kind; condition of quiet, calm, order, and security. Peace is also described as an agreement between contending parties.

John 14:27 NKJV

“Peace, I leave with you, My peace I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”

We have peace with God because of Jesus’ sacrifice. When we accept Jesus as our Savior we receive a special type of peace that only God can give and we become a child of God. We will put on a spirit of calmness and tranquility because Jesus’ peace removes dread and fear from our heart.

As a child of God we can tell others how they can receive the same peace that we have. When we tell others that they can have peace with God through His Son, Jesus, we are being a peacemaker.

Psalm 34:14 NKJV

“Depart from evil and do good;

Seek peace and pursue it.”

Hebrews 12:14

“Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord.”

Not only does God desire for us to live at peace with Him, He desires for us to live at peace with others. When a person is at peace with God and other people it will bring blessings.

8. God will bless those who are persecuted falsely because of Him. Persecuted means to suffer repeatedly because of what you believe or because of your principles. There are people all over the world that are caused to suffer repeatedly, harmed, oppressed, annoyed and harassed for righteousness sake. When people oppress a child of God because of the stand that they take for God, He will bless them.

1 Peter 2:21 NKJV

“For to this you were called because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example , that you should follow His steps.”

When we begin to feel like we are persecuted for righteousness sake we must remember that it (the persecution) will not last forever. We must also remember to follow Jesus’ example of handling persecution. The persecution and troubles that we face here on earth are nothing compared to our time in eternity with God.

Romans 8:18 NKJV

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present times are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.”

Give Thanks To God For His Blessings

A thankful heart opens up even more blessings from God.

 

Luke 17:15-16 NKJV

“And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, returned, and with a loud voice glorified God, and fell down on his face at His feet, giving Him thanks. And he was a Samaritan.”

 

One day as Jesus was traveling through the middle of Samaria and Galilee on His way to Jerusalem He was met by a group of ten lepers. The lepers cried out to Jesus asking Him to have mercy on them.

Because of Jesus’ compassion, He did have mercy on them. He instructed them to go to the priest so that he could declare them clean. As they were walking to show themselves to the priest they were healed of their leprosy.

When one of the ten men looked down and saw that his skin was well he turned to go back to thank Jesus for this wonderful blessing. He returned to Jesus and immediately began giving God glory for his healing. The blessing gave the leper comfort and joy.

Jesus asked him where the other nine men who were healed were at. When Jesus realized that only the one man, a Samaritan, returned to thank Him, He gave the man another blessing. Jesus made him well – he was made whole.

All the men were blessed with being cleansed (healed), however the one leper that thanked Jesus for His blessing received an even greater blessing. Instead of just being cleansed, he was made well (whole).

Psalm 34:1 NKJV

“I will bless the Lord at all times;

His praise shall continually be in my mouth.”

All believers are to give thanks to God for His blessings. When we truly thank God for His favor and His blessings, He will bless us even more. The Bible tells us that we are to give thanks for everything, and that includes the blessings of God.

Ephesians 5:20 NKJV

“…giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ…”

Dear Father,

Thank-you for blessing me spiritually, emotionally, physically and materially. Thank-you for the favor that You shower upon me. I am most grateful that I am Your child and I have an intimate relationship with You. You are my heart’s desire and I love You with all my heart and soul. You have set Your love upon me and You deliver and protect me in every circumstance. You give rain in due season and I never lack for anything. By the power of the Holy Spirit, help me to follow Your ways and obey Your commands. May I not focus on myself, instead focus on You and others. Fill me with an increased desire to spend more time in prayer and reading Your Word. And may my entire life be worship unto You. May I be an extension of Your mercy and compassion. Give me a pure heart and clean hands. Purify me from all unrighteousness and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Let peace surround me in every relationship and situation.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

 

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Devotion

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Devotion

desperation - Copy

Anna was an elderly prophetess, maybe around 106 years old. She lived in Jerusalem. Anna was married for seven years when her husband died. The Bible tells us that Anna stayed in the temple day and night worshipping God. She spent all her time praying and fasting. She spent her time ministering to God.

Luke 2:36-37 NKJV    

“Now there was one, Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was of  a great age, and had lived with a husband seven years from her virginity; and this woman was a widow of about eighty-four years, who did not depart from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.”

     God showed Anna His secret (who the Redeemer was) because of her intimate relationship with Him. During our times of intimacy with God, He will whisper secrets, mysteries and revelations into our ear.

Luke 2:38  NKJV    

“And coming in that instant she gave thanks to the Lord, and spoke of Him to all those who looked for redemption in Jerusalem.”

Anna was in the temple when Joseph and Mary brought baby Jesus to present to the Lord. When she saw Jesus, she immediately gave thanks to God. She physically saw what God had already shown her in the spirit.

The dictionary tells us that devotion means having a strong attachment or attraction to a person or cause. To be devoted is to be dedicated, to be completely applied to some activity, purpose, or person. To have devotion to someone or something means you won’t allow anything to distract you from doing what needs to be done.

Anna was devoted to worshiping God. She had a strong affection for God, and completely dedicated her whole life to ministering to Him through prayer and worship. She didn’t let anything distract her from her purpose. Her purpose was worshiping God and she knew it. Fulfilling her purpose brought great joy and blessings to her.

Isaiah 55:2    

“Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? And your labour for that which satisfieth not? Harken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness.”

     When we draw close to God, we begin to experience peace and joy that we can’t find anywhere else. When we fill ourselves up with God’s purpose (to worship Him), our souls will find a special delight.

Deuteronomy 6:5  NKJV    

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.”

     First and most importantly we should be devoted to God. Nothing should ever distract us.

1. We should be devoted to knowing Him.

2. We should be devoted to obeying Him.

3. We should be devoted to living a life that is pleasing to God.

We should not be lukewarm concerning our devotion to God or to the things of God. We should never be halfhearted in our love and devotion to God.

Revelation 3:16  NKJV    

“So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.”

     Devotion to God involves all aspects of our life, wherever we are and whatever we’re doing- in public or in private. God desires for us to be single-minded. If we are double-minded we will be unstable, even in our devotion to God.

James 1:8 NKJV    

“He is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.”

I. We Should Be Devoted To Knowing God

To “know” someone describes an intimate relationship that includes ardor (warmth of emotions, great enthusiasm, eagerness, zeal), passion (very strong feeling or emotions, very strong love or desire), mutuality and oneness (one in kind, singleness, unity, agreement, harmony).

Jeremiah 24:7  NKJV    

“Then I will give them a heart to know Me, that I  am the Lord; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God, for they shall return to Me with their whole heart.”

     Mary and Martha are good examples of devotion to two different things. Mary was devoted to knowing Jesus intimately (worshiping), and Martha was devoted to working for Jesus (serving).

Mary, Martha and Lazarus were friends of Jesus.  Jesus would sometimes stop at their house when He was traveling in their area. Martha was the oldest female in the house, so she was in charge of running the household.

Luke 10:38-39  NKJV    

“Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus’ feet and heard His word.”

     One day Jesus stopped by for a meal, and Martha hurried to get everything ready. Martha worked  hard and she began to get tired. She looked for Mary because she wanted help.

Luke 10:40  NKJV    

“But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, ‘Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.”

     Martha found Mary sitting at the feet of Jesus listening to Him. Martha looked at Jesus and said, “Lord, Don’t you care that my sister has left all the work for me to do? Tell her to help me!”

Luke 10:41-42  NKJV    

“And Jesus answered and said to her, ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.”

     Martha probably thought Jesus was going to go and make Mary help her. Instead Jesus looked gently at Martha and said, “Martha, Martha. You are worried and upset about many things but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken from her.”

The Bible doesn’t tell us what Martha’s response was. We don’t know what Martha did. She could have went back into the hot kitchen mad, angry and hurt or she could have fell to her knees in front of Jesus and cried out, “Jesus, forgive me!”

We don’t have to wait for Jesus to pass through our town to minister to Him. He is always with us. Jesus is always near us and always listening. When we realize who Jesus is, spend time with Him, and direct our attention toward Him we are “sitting at His feet.” We must talk to Him, learn about Him, and listen to Him. We must allow Him to pour His love into us and change us.

When you love someone, you want to spend time with that person. Jesus loves us and wants to spend time with us. We are His bride. He enjoys our company! Jesus wants us to feel the same about Him. He wants us to love Him so much that we want to spend time with Him.

II. We should Be Devoted To Obeying God:

God demands obedience. We must be devoted to obeying God. Sincerity and obedience are prerequisites for worship that pleases God. The sacrifice that Saul made to God was not pleasing to God because Saul disobeyed God. God tells us in His Word that obedience is better than sacrifice.

1 Samuel 15:22  NKJV    

“So Samuel said: “Has the Lord as great

delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices,

As in obeying the voice of the Lord?

Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice,

And to heed than the fat of the rams”

     God desires that everyone have an intimate relationship with Him, but you cannot if there is disobedience (sin) in your life. Unconfessed sin interferes with a person’s relationship with God.

Psalm 51:10  NKJV    

“Create in me a clean heart, O God,

And renew a steadfast spirit within me.”

     You cannot be devoted to obeying God unless you allow Him to take your heart of stone and replace it with a heart of flesh.

Ezekiel 11:19-21  NKJV    

“’Then I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within them, and take the stony heart out of their flesh, and give them a heart of flesh, that they may walk in My statutes and keep My judgments and do them; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God. But as for those whose hearts follow the desire for their detestable things and their abominations, I will recompense their deeds on their own heads,” says the Lord God.”

III. We Should Be Devoted To Living A Life That Is Pleasing To God:  

Each one of us should be devoted to living a life that is pleasing to God. A life that reflects Jesus Christ. When we spend time with God, He can change us. He makes us more like Him. When we draw close to Him, He comes into our lives, our thoughts and our hearts. The more time we spend in God’s presence, the more we will reflect Jesus.

Matthew 5:16  NKJV    

“Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.”

Conclusion:

Anything can take our attention away from God, both good and bad things. Good activities (including church programs, schedules, and campaigns) as well as bad circumstances (such as worry, fear, sickness and tragedy) can distract us from God. Anything that we allow to crowd out our time with God separates us from intimacy with Him. How we spend our time gives us a good idea of what things are the most important to us.

Matthew 6:19-21     

“Lay not up for yourself treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: for where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”

     These verses tell us not to store up treasure on earth, but to store up treasure in heaven. It tells us that where our treasures are there our hearts will be also. We must not let ourselves become distracted by things or people in our love and devotion to God. God desires to shower us with His incredible love and to reveal Himself to us. God wants us to delight in Him, to be devoted to Him, and to desire to be in His presence.

Psalm 27:4  NKJV    

“One thing I have desired of the Lord,

That will I seek:

That I may dwell in the house of the Lord

All the days of my life,

To behold the beauty of the Lord,

And to inquire in His temple.”