Friday, September 30, 2011

Got a gift? Great! Give it away for the glory of God ...

Each one should use whatever gift he (she) has received to serve others, faithfully administering God's grace in its various forms.
1 Peter 4:10

As a child, I looked forward to my birthday for weeks preceding the actual big day. I would spend countless hours imagining what type of gift I might receive from my parents. They always knew exactly what gift would best suit me. I didn't always get everything I wanted, but  inevitably, what I did receive was something I liked. I don't ever recall tearing through the wrapping paper and opening the box only to exclaim: "How could you! Give me another gift!" I knew that I could trust that whatever my parents had for me was a good gift.

Granted, we don't always receive the presents we dream about. I've heard enough re-gifting stories to know that some things belong better with another person. However, when it comes to the gift or gifts God gives, we can trust He got it right the first time. He knows us better than any parent, spouse, child, or best friend. We'd be wise to prayerfully accept whatever special treasure He's bequeathed us.

Too often, like immature children, we compare our gifts, wishing we had been give the gift of hospitality instead of the gift of prophecy, or this gift rather than that one. Instead of analyzing our gifts, we'd be better off learning how to best use them to serve others. After all, whatever God has given us is meant to be shared, not hidden away.

Children are encouraged to share their gifts. As a parent, I battled against my children's desires to keep their gifts all to themselves. I understood that in the end sharing would have a better result. The same is true with the spiritual gifts God so generously and perfectly provides us. Let us make the absolute best of whatever we've been given and start spreading God's grace-filled gifts around.

Princess Warrior action item: How can I use my gift/s to serve someone in a practical way today?

Princess Prayer: Lord, thank You for the gifts You have given me. May I use them in a way that best serves You and others.

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED FOR ALL PRINCESS WARRIORS: A special journal/prayer journal to record your daily thoughts and prayers, and to answer questions like the one listed above titled "action item." You'll note that today's main picture showcases a journal and pen. Your journal can be as fancy/frilly or as plain/practical as you'd like. It's your special book to record your deepest dreams, desires, and even your darkest days. Pour your heart out to God. He will love you and forgive you while providing the strength and courage needed to resist the evil one  

If you enjoy devotional books as part of your devotion times, consider this wonderful book: Better Together. I am thrilled to share that I am one of the books contributing authors. This latest post comes from one of the devotional messages I penned.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Don't forget The Armor

Ladies, I think this picture and prayer are the perfect reminders of how we as Princess Warriors for Christ need to dress for danger and prepare with prayer before waltzing out into the world, unaware of the devil's diabolical plans to derail us from doing what's right. 

When I speak at retreats, I always take the opportunity to present a drama that describes, in detail, what a woman's day "looks like" without the armor in place, and then follow it up with a depiction of how we can live victoriously by keeping our armor on and intact. Illustrations like this serve as solid reminders that we are indeed at war, but, thankfully, our Commander provides the perfect arsenal of weapons. It's up to us to use them.

We wouldn't traipse into an earthly war zone without protection, yet many of us charge out our doors with no spiritual protection, and then wonder what happened to our good intentions. We question how we managed to drift so far from our desires and dreams for the day.

It doesn't have to be this way. We can take the time get "prayed up" and "dressed up" for our day. In the end, we will be glad we did!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Mystical Monday ... say what?

Greetings Princess Warriors! I have made a commitment to BLOG for GOD on a regular basis. For a long, long time I struggled with my faith and staying positive in the midst of darkness. If you're up-to-date on my writings, you know that life had thrown me a fair share of curve balls. Thankfully, with Christ as my King, I was ultimately able to celebrate victory.

You're probably wondering about my title: Mystical Monday. I'll get right to my explanation.

On a local radio station that I occasionally tune in to, I discovered something rather disturbing. Every Monday evening they have a talk show format, and focus on the supernatural and the mystical. They interview witches, mediums, folks that practice what we as Christians know are dark arts. What's so scary is these women (I haven't heard a man interviewed) cheerfully share about their lives and spiritual practices. They promote their practices as the answers to happiness and excitement. The host giggles right along with them, while listeners call in and ask questions. It seems so innocent (and intriguing) to the average person. The topics are fascinating and the format easily lures the listeners in.

I realize that to unbelievers we are often considered radical wackos, yet somehow, someway, all these other bizarre beliefs are embraced and discussed openly on popular public radio programming. The guests are given respect and are even honored as they peddle their brand of spirituality. I've yet to hear of a Christian guest participating on this program. I find that more than a little frustrating, although not surprising.

We have exciting supernatural stories to share with the world; stories that can change lives for the better. We serve a God that can raise the dead. He can renew our minds and restore our hearts. He can turn ashes to beauty and water to wine. That's good stuff! That's true stuff! The real deal. Yep, we serve the only real God. The Creator of Heaven and of Earth.

Sadly, though, the truth is shunned and the enemy's lies are touted as the truth. Sin isn't something to giggle about, nor is it something to embrace. But every Monday, in a welcoming way, a certain radio station promotes the Highway to Hell as the Path to Paradise. Maybe not intentionally, but unfortunately it's happening.

What can we as Princess Warriors for Christ do to combat programing like this?

1. We pray. Pray for God's truth to reign. Pray for the radio/TV hosts/writers to experience a spiritual awakening. Pray they come to know Christ as their Lord, Savior, and King.
2. Be prepared to answer tough questions without becoming defensive or combative. Too often we find ourselves defending our faith with anger. It's frustrating to see how easily folks buy the lie yet refuse to research what's real. Rather than letting our emotions gain control, consider in advance what you might say when conversations about supernatural and mystical matters arise. Hollering about Hell isn't going to get the results we hope for. We can stand on the truth with love. People are searching for answers. Let's have some to share.
3. Take action.  Contact the source directly and voice your opinion. Contact your friends and have them contact the source that is spreading these messages that masquerade as truth. If enough people stand up, the powers-that-be can't help but notice. Again, we do this with love. We can be firm and deliberate without being dreadful.

A number of years ago, there was this TV show that I loved. It was an evening drama about the world following a nuclear attack. They discontinued the series after only 12 episodes, leaving numerous questions unanswered. Thousands of fans called, emailed, wrote letters, and sent peanuts (long story) to the network. Finally, the network relented and aired another partial season to wind things up. In our case, we're asking for someone to turn the programing off! Same idea though, right?

Or ... we could take another path and instead request that they include the Christian point of view on their programing. Why is every so-called path explored, but Christianity ignored? Hum ... just a thought.

Ladies, I'm sad to say that too often I simply ignore situations like the one I'm visiting in this post. I find myself thinking: "There's nothing I can do about this. Why bother? Blah. Blah. Blah." I give up without a fight.

I know I'm not the only one. Can you imagine if every warrior for Christ stepped up and stood up for the truth? We could make significant differences in the world around us. 

So, what are we waiting for? At the very least we can do what is always best; we can pray. 

My commitment ... to pray for this radio show, the station, and the people involved. I will ask for their eyes to be opened to the truth. I will also email this radio host and suggest (strongly) that they consider featuring a Christian. They are very interested in so-called supernatural power. Well, I know where to find that power! Amen!

My challenge to you, sisters, is simply to pray. Pray for God to infiltrate the airwaves. Pray for ways to make the truth known in the media. Pray for creative opportunities to share the truth of our salvation. Pray. 

That's all for now. Until next time! Keep reigning real, one step and a prayer at a time.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Our Best Weapon: LOVE

In a world filled with hostility and hatred, it can be difficult to love. Especially those folks who are hostile and hateful! But we, of course, as Princess Warriors for Christ, are called (actually, commanded) to love.

When I speak at retreats, I often share an amazing story about God's grace and love. I'd like to share this story with you, precious reader.

Click below to read (WARNING:You may want to grab a tissue!)

Remember to reign real by loving boldly.