With reactions, they occur because of a behavior. Think about it, as a parent or maybe you were told this as a child-if someone hits you, you hit them back. We aren’t here to dispute if that’s a good reaction or not-but ultimately, it’s a reaction to a behavior. A response is a reply. If someone hits a child, we tell them to respond by going to the teacher or telling a trusted adult.
A reaction is immediate, a response is intentional. A reaction encourages us to act based off of emotions or feelings. A response encourages us to think before moving.
The Lord exhorts believers to respond. Turn the other cheek. Love. Be slow to speak, quick to listen. These are all responses. These responses draw us to this important truth:
Ultimately, our flesh is designed to react. It is designed to act with emotion. It is designed to feel good about reactions. But intentional responses build our spirit man! Our flesh reacts, our spirit responds.
We know it feels fleshly good to react but we need to respond! We need to respond to the Father. We need to respond to those who are hurting-they tend to lash out. We need to respond to our enemies-do good to those who hurt you. We need to respond to hate with love-love conquers all!
Choose this day, what will you do: Will you react or will you respond? Which choice will let your gentleness be evident to all?
To the Microwave, Instant Pot, and Air Fryer Generation,
How wonderful are these appliances?! For the weary, working parents-it’s a lifesaver! To the single man, just looking for a quick meal-it’s a God send! To the hungry college student-it’s gourmet feast! Not many can deny that these creations are amazing.
We mustn’t not confuse a microwave oven with a microwave Father. It’s quite easy to do, unfortunately. Our microwave generation has translated to a phone and vehicles and computers. With the snap of our fingers, we can have the information, the connection, and the meal we desire.
Our Father does not move with the snap of our fingers-He moves with the rate of our faith. The Lord, our God isn’t instant (unless He wants to be…). The Father isn’t a genie and is not magic.
Our generation has to learn how to long-suffer, to continuously pray, and to remain thankful. This stance isn’t to obtain what we want but to draw closer to the One who wove us in our mother’s wombs.
We must be careful not to adopt the microwave mindset while serving the Lord. We need a slow cooker perspective. The more we pray, the more we fast, the more we wait-the Father will show Himself faithful.
To this generation of convenience-your prayers are not in vain, your tears are not missed, and your heart’s cry is heard. You will get the victory and the Lord will get the glory!
Having a rough day? Needing a reminder? How about clinging to this powerful Word?
When the enemy tries to tell you otherwise, whisper: “Lord, You are good and you do good…”
When you are reminded of past trauma, whisper: “Lord, You are good and you do good.”
When you receive disappointing news, cry out: “Lord, You are good and you do good.”
When that door closes, write: “Lord, You are good and you do good.”
When the one you thought you were going to spend the rest of your life with, shout: “Lord, You are good and you do good.”
As you start to repeat that simple line, Heaven will respond, Angels will be dispatch, and the Lord will smell your sweet fragrant of praise. As you declare that power over your life, you will see the good that you are declaring. As you shower that scripture, your strength is renewed!
There is power in repeating the truth of God’s Word! It’s not about shouting it on street corners, it’s about whispering it with tear-filled eyes. It’s about speaking it when you aren’t seeing good. It’s about crying out about the Lord’s goodness when you are discouraged and distracted.
Find yourselves declaring: “Lord, You are good and you do good.”
Being persuaded or pressured is frequently associated with negative behaviors. However, let’s adjust our perspective of persuasion. Have you ever been persuaded to do something good?
Think about your physical health: haven’t you been compelled to work out or eat better because you were able to see the benefits for someone else? Think about cooking: haven’t you been persuaded to try out a recipe because you watched someone prepare it on YouTube?
The power of persuasion doesn’t always result in drinking, sex, or drugs. Sometimes, you will be motivated to try out something that will benefit your family, your health, or your wealth.
Persuasion worked for Abraham:
So how does this become our testimony? We cling to the Word of God through Jesus Christ!
Sisters, Abraham believed because God said so! He had not seen the promises of God manifested, all of the natural things pointed to the very opposite of what God said-but he persuaded simply by God’s Words!
This must be true for us! We have to know His Word so that we can cling to His Word and by clinging to His Word, we will become persuaded by His Word.
Joyce Meyer, TD Jakes, and your current pastor are great folks-they are not the Word of God! If you can be persuaded by them, imagine what the pure, unfiltered Word of God can do for our lives. It’s time to go back to Bible Study with your Bible, pen, paper, and the Holy Spirit leading the way. It’s time to go back to memorizing scripture and speaking the Word of God over our situations.
It is time to be persuaded by the pure and beautiful Word of God! Abraham heard the direct voice of the Lord. That beautiful, still, small, yet powerful voice must be our sole motivation.
The Lord knows what we have need of, He knows the desires of our heart. He knows our cares and concerns. Sometimes our best prayers come through our praise. We can praise the Lord, knowing that He can and will do what we’ve asked. We praise resting in the sovereignty of the Lord our God. Let’s look to the beautiful words of Psalm 100!
1) “Lift up a great shout of joy to Yahweh! Go ahead and do it—everyone, everywhere!
2) Worship Yahweh with gladness. Sing your way into his presence with joy!
3) And realize what this really means— we have the privilege of worshiping Yahweh our God. For he is our Creator and we belong to him. We are the people of his pleasure.
4) You can pass through his open gates with the password of praise. Come right into his presence with thanksgiving. Come bring your thank offering to him and affectionately bless his beautiful name!
5) For Yahweh is always good and ready to receive you. He’s so loving that it will amaze you— so kind that it will astound you! And he is famous for his faithfulness toward all. Everyone knows our God can be trusted, for he keeps his promises to every generation!”
We are probably are familiar with the saying: “you can’t pour from an empty cup…”, right? Sometimes the cup isn’t truly empty. Sometimes the cup is full our ourselves: our plans, our desire, and our will. If we are the only contents of our cup, it is truly empty.
Do we leave room for the Lord in our cup? Not only should He be the center, but He must also be the content of our cup:
The love of God through Jesus Christ is what fills our cups. The quote of pouring from an empty cup often charges us to take a nap, get mani/pedi, or get a cup of coffee. None of those things are bad at all-however, it all starts with Christ!
The love that covers a multitude of sins, the love that shed its blood on Calvary, and the love that gave His One and Only Son so that we could be in greater relationship with Him-that is what must first fill our cups.
The filling of Christ’s love for us is what completes us, reconstructs our will to please Him, and molds our desires to satisfy our spirit rather than our flesh-this in our cups will truly change our lives.