Friday, July 1, 2016

You’re Changing Me

Our beautiful favor find: Phlox cost - $1.00
On the way home from our Wednesday favor flower hunt I asked my husband if we could stop at the post office for some stamps.  Even though the thermometer was pushing 90 degrees, I chose to wait in the car. 

It’s really something how you can live in a town for a period of time and still not recognize a single person.  I watched varying facial expressions as the townspeople entered the building.  They were coming from every direction and of all ages, yet they were there for one purpose – something having to do with mail.   

An elderly gentleman wasn’t able to find a close parking spot and I watched his slow gait as he approached the steps to the post office.  He wasn’t hard to miss among the crowd and my eyes were drawn to him noticing how hunched over he was.  As he got closer I remembered a scripture and prayed Lord make the crooked straight. 

With each individual that passed I wondered if these people walked by Jesus, would they know Him?  Would Jesus automatically heal that older man without saying a word to him?   

Then the real question arose … if Jesus were standing right here with me in the flesh, what would He expect me to do after having spent time journeying with Him?  Would my reaction and response have changed from what it was in the past? 

Welcome new friends this week from:
See if your city/state/country made the list. 

New on DFBKingaroy, QLD & Melbourne, VIC, Australia; Brazil; Ghana; Guatemala; Lagos, Lagos State, Nigeria; Mexico; South Africa; Ecuador; Turkey; Waitara, Taranaki, New Zealand; Kathmandu, Bagmati Zone, Nepal; Kenya; Germany; Mazabuka, Southern Province, Zambia. 

USA Yucca Valley, CA; Madras & Roswell, GA; Kenner & Mandeville, LA; Watership Downs, NC; Harding, Ocean City, Mullica Hill & Verona, NJ; Lakewood, NY; New Kingstown, PA; Anderson, SC; San Leanna, TX; Camano Island & Deer Park, WA. 

I am so happy for your visit and hope that you come back each week to participate in the weekly challenges.  God has been faithful and we expect His favor to abound in the lives of those who chose to be Discipled by Jesus on Daily Favor Blog.
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The Brown Box 

Why is it when you’re waiting for someone it seems to take eons for them to make their appearance? Finally I saw hubby coming through the door of the post office and noticed he had a brown box tucked under his arm. 

When he opened the car door I said, “Oh that was fast.  Is it the vitamins?” 

Correcting me hubby answered, “No … it’s from the funeral home.” 

Right away I knew what it was and didn’t want to open the parcel.  It had been a week since the home going service of my father and the contents inside the brown box was a reminder of how things had changed. 

For several days I kept moving the box trying to put it out of my mind. I would have been more successful if I tucked it in with the piles of mail I’ve yet to open, that way I’m sure to forget about that package. 

Maybe if I put it under one of the cat beds or in the laundry basket … no, the brown box seemed to be wrapped in glow lights because my mind kept focusing on “You’ll have to open me some time.”   

Getting ready to “deal with it” every time I walked by the box (that I’ve moved in different locations around the house) a cat was sleeping on it.  Surely it was a sign from God! 

Change Is Coming 

It has been four months since we have been trying to “catch” a feral cat in the neighborhood.  We have no idea where he came from, but found out that he had been living under a vacant house.  Week after week my husband had been putting food in the area to lure him out of hiding.  Finally gaining the trust of the feline, he was able to touch him even while eating and medicate his bloody torn ears. 

It was late May when we were able to get close enough to take some pictures; by then hubby was calling him “Bubba.”  Our hands were full with caring for Jewel kitty and two others who needed IV treatments, so we put word out that if we could trap him was there someone who would adopt this little fellow.   

On June 2nd I noticed that Mr. B. was limping but we still couldn’t pick him up to see what was wrong.  Several days went by and he was getting worse.  Knowing we had to do something, my husband set up a standing appointment with the veterinarian to bring him in as soon as he could capture Bubba. 

Sadly little Jewel left earth on June 6th and our hearts were still grieving when God allowed things to be stirred up even more. 
Two days later (June 8th) Bubba was on our doorstep waiting to be fed.  Quickly grabbing a crate hubby scooped up the cat and straightaway took him to the vet with no time to waste. 

With no suitable foster parents for this cat patient the bill was rising.  Recovering from battle wounds due to street fights and what appeared to be a snake bite, Bubba remained in the animal hospital.   

On June 16th my father went home to be with the Lord and our home was once more changing.  I wasn’t ready to take on anything else at this time, but God didn’t see it that way.  He had been preparing us for change as we have been journeying with Him, helping us to grow in faith and favor with each new encounter. 

The following day (June 17th) we brought (what I call him…) “Hubba Bubba” home.  Listening to the voice of the Lord over our emotions, we changed so God could show favor on this little eleven pound creature. 

You Can Count on Change 

No matter how hard we try, we cannot stop change.  Some of it is great and in other situations it is difficult to accept. 
The last thing I’ve wanted in my life recently is change, and the very thing I most want is change.  How is that possible?  The things that are working great for me I want to continue working on and on and on until Jesus comes.  All the hardships, well who wouldn’t want that stuff to change in an instant right? 

“I’m so ready for change.  I’m tired of being disappointed.”  Have you ever felt like that?  We want to live in utopia where things never go wrong, no one is fighting, food is plentiful and everyone lives in abundance.  Jesus knew that even though we are new creations through Him, we would face circumstances that weren’t quite “favorable.”  

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new (changed).”  (2 Corinthians 5:17 NKJV emphasis mine) 

What did Jesus teach that we can use in this ever changing world? Should we resist change or just “go with the flow” like everyone else?  These are questions the current day disciples should be asking the Lord regularly, and part of what I’ll be sharing for the next phase on Daily Favor. 

Changing Me, Changing You 

Throughout my journey that I’ve shared with you over the years on Daily Favor, I’ve really noticed something … “Lord, you’re changing me!”  The things that I found hard to change, He made easy when I would seek His face (not His hand for favor).   

I felt in my spirit that God was going to do something and have me share it for the next “leg” of our journey.  You can only travel with someone so far before they start thinking of you as a tag-a-long and not a friend.  

In relationships there has to be interaction.  The Bible tells us that we are perfectly welcome to cast our cares and burdens of the Lord, because He loves us. (1 Peter 5:7)  However, Jesus didn’t take us on to be a “load” (or slug as hubby put it), but thinks of us as a benefit to the Kingdom of God.   

When the first disciples journeyed with Jesus their part was to watch, listen, learn and then do what He did.  Although there have been millions of modifications from that generation up to now, this instruction method isn’t one that changed. 

The people coming in and out of the post office had a reason for being there; their mindset wasn't that of unity, but mainly for their own purposes.  That's okay when you aren't working toward the same goal.  However, as children of God our thoughts need to be united and one with the Lord.
Our journey with Jesus has a purpose and that’s to fulfill His plan for our life, this means we’ve got to be trained in the skills we need to succeed.  Christians are about to see some changes, big changes … new, “special favor” is coming to the Body of Christ in these last days and we should desire to be a part of it.  

“But whatever I am now, it is all because God poured out His special favor on me – and not without results. 
 For I (Paul) have worked harder than any of the other apostles;
 yet it was not I but God who was working through me by His grace.” (1Corinthians 15:10 NLT) 

This Week’s Challenge:
Prepared for Disciplining 

During my quiet time the Lord spoke to my spirit encouraging my heart for the changes He is about to make in our lives.  My response was, “Lord, prepare me for the changes. Give me the peace I need to not be afraid.”  I believe that this was something the apostles dealt with when they left their families and homes to follow Jesus on His journey to the cross. 

As they journeyed with Jesus in their “disciple” classes to be “like” Him, they observed and learned that circumstances didn’t change Jesus; He changed circumstances.  We are still witness to this through God’s grace, mercy, blessings and favor on any situation. 

Can we actually “prepare” to be disciples and be led by Jesus?  That’s a good question.  The answer is yes! 

For the past six months our main focus has been on the journey itself with Jesus and getting “used” to hanging out with him (so to speak).  We’ve actually been preparing for this next step all along! 

Our challenge this week will focus on preparing for the Lord to disciple us Himself as He did with the first twelve.  It will take time meditating on the Word and in prayer asking God to help us accept the changes He’s about to bring into our life so that He may be glorified.  Our success depends on us doing what God says.  Obedience to God is rewarded with favor from God. 

“This Book of the Law (the Bible) shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate in it day and night, that you may observe to do according to all that is written in it.  For then (when you actively study the Word of God) you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”
(Joshua 1:8 NKJV emphasis mine) 

We need to get excited for the welcome changes and become strong in the Lord for things we cannot change, knowing that God is going to turn circumstances around for our good. 

When you pray, be very quiet and listen for His voice (in your spirit). Some Christians still aren’t walking in God’s favor because they haven’t learned to listen to the inner voice, which is the Holy Spirit. (Romans 11:7 NLT) 

Seek the Lord’s face acknowledging that He is everything you strive to be and that you are open to His changes.  God is going to do “new things” and pour out His favor; don’t you want it to be through you? 

“…for I am about to do something new.  See, I have already begun!  Do you now see it?”  (Isaiah 43:19a NLT) 

As of today I still haven’t opened the little brown box package, but no worries, someone is taking care of it for me until I do.  It’s “Bubba” the newest change in our lives. 

Meet "Bubba" guardian of the brown box!
“May God be merciful and bless us. May His face smile with favor on us (as we step into a new area of being Discipled by Jesus).  (Psalm 67:1 NLT emphasis mine)

Changing Me by Anna Golden

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Until next time, God’s favor is bringing a change!
“Favor increase is on its way.”
Jesus Christ 

*Unless noted, the names in articles are changed to protect the individual(s) privacy. 

Note: Emphasis is given in some scriptures to show clarity or understanding and is not to take away from the inspirited Word of God.
When used, the words satan or devil are not capitalized deliberately, because we give him no place in our lives. 
... and yes, the word "discipled" isn't a word used by the world, but that of believers.
Disclaimer: Article information is not meant to be used as treatment for mental or physical issues, but geared toward spiritual awareness. 

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Scripture reference was taken from the New King James Bible Version provided by Gateway Bible.
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