Tag Archives: Light

UNDER THE INFLUENCE

UNDER THE INFLUENCE 2

 

SELAH Daily Devotions!

 

But without faith it is impossible to please him; for he that cometh to god must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.’ Hebrews 11:6

 

The other day I heard someone say something that I thought was quite profound, at least thought provoking. It was said that “we are swirling towards eternity at the speed of life!” History is being written every day. Memories are being made, every day. Lessons are being taught and learned, every day. Attitudes are being formed and developed, every day.

As I began to think about this, several questions flooded my mind. First, does God’s Presence influence your life? If so, then howWhat impact has God’s Presence in you made in your circle of influence?

We love to sing the song, “Jesus You’re the center of my joy, all that’s good and perfect comes from You; You’re the Heart of my contentment, Hope for all I do….” But when the music stops and your feet hit the ground, how’s your walk? In other words, does your video authenticate your audio? #ijs!!!

The Bible does not merely ask us to have faith to believe that God does exist. Lucifer and his hord of demons believe that God exists, however they don’t follow Him! As bona fide, Blood-washed, Born-Again Children of The Most High God, our lifestyle should attest to fact that not only do we believe that He exits, but we  also believe that God is who He says He is, that God is with us, that God is for us and that God will perform every promise that He’s sworn by GOD-self towards us! (Ref. Hebrew 11:6)  Hence, if we desire to please The Lord we must walk out our lives under the influence of His Presence, adhering to HIS instructions and exemplifying our beliefs throughout the course of daily living! #Didjaheardat? #SERIOUSLY!!!

Does your character reflect the Presence of God in your life? Does the influence of God’sPresence affect the choices that you make? Does your life style reflect the influence of God’s Presence? Who’s chances of ending up in Heaven have increased because of the impact that you’ve made upon their life? Who’s chances of ending up in Hell increased because you are in their life? Now, since our response and our responsbility carry eternal consequences, may I suggest that you carefully and consciencously ponder the depth of your soul before answering the aforementioned questions? 

We are living epistles (letters) and folk are reading our mail, every day! How is the Presence of God in you influencing your readers? Just a thought! #ijs (Ref. 2 Corinthians 3:1-3)

The Bible says, we are the salt of the earth. I believe that means that we ought to make someone who doesn’t know God, thirsty for a drink of The Living Waters(Ref. Matthew 5:13-14)

As Christians, our greatest desire should be to allow the influence of God’s Presence to be reflected on those around us so much so that it provokes them to envy  and thirst for The God that we worship and  ultimately seek to claim Him as their personal Savior and Lord! 

Looking back, perhaps there where many times when we almost, and unfortunately, even more times where we flat-out missed opportunities to Glorify God! Thanks Be To God!  IT MATTERS NOT WHERE WE START, BUT HOW WE END!  The ground around The Cross of Calvary is level to all!  With each new day, GOD SO GRACIOUSLY GIVES US ANOTHER OPPORTUNITY TO BEGIN, AGAIN! #WOW! 

As this year slips into eternity past, instead of lingering in the land of pouting and doubting remember that BUT…by God’s Grace!  KEEP IT MOVIN’! SPEND TODAY WISELY! LIVE EACH DAY UNDER THE INFLUENCE OF GOD’S PRESENCE! 

BELOVED, MAY YOU EMBRACE A PRODUCTIVE AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR!

SELAH! 

Pause, Ponder, Pray & Praiz!

Ann Caffee

UNREASONABLE HOPE?

UNREASONABLE HOPE

SELAH Daily Devotions!

 

But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: 1 Peter 3:15

 

Daily, the end-time prophetic utterances are being actualized in real-time-illustrated- sermons. You don’t have to be a Biblical Scholar or Seminar Theologian to recognize that we’re living in troubling times and that the end is nearer now than its ever been. The world is spirialing towards Eternity at the speed of life and there’s absolutely nothing man can do to effectively change the course of destiny! Except humble himself and surrender his life to His Creator! The problem is, far too many are yet unwilling to accept Truth even as it’s glaring at us right between our eyes. What’s up with dat?  Perhaps we might glean some insight from The Bible.

And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. John 3:19.

Honestly, The Bible never tells us that after we make the decision to live holy, as unto The Lord, that we can just relax stretched out on a flowery bed of ease. Yet, it does promise rewards of a better life than those who refuse to accept The Savior’s Amazing Grace. Nevertheless, far too many still opt to take the pathway of least resistance. Falling prey to the assumption that rejection liberates them from that pesty notion called ‘accountability’, they prefer the more popular alleyway of “I’m the master of my own destiny; therefore I’ll do whatever seems right in my own mind for as long as I feel like it! And IF there is a GOD, then I expect Him to calculate my good and evil deeds and compassionately determine that since I’m not like so and so, He’ll let me come thru The Pearly Gates.”

Unfortunately, sometimes the-saints don’t fare much better! When challenged by unfavorable situations, fear and doubt will slither in, causing us to erroneously accuse and attack the Faithfulness of Jehovah Jireh with a “Where are you GOD? Why is this happening to me? I am born-again, I’ve been baptized. I’m not perfect, but I deserve better than this. Besides, I thought we’re no longer under the Law but under The Dispensation of Grace. So EVEN if I still walk in unfaithful disobedience, God, you know my heart, right?”

Ironically, the more holy your lifestyle, the more of a target of unsavory rejection and reproof you become to those who choose not to live Godly. Evidently, your Godliness testifies against their Godlessness! (Ref. 2 Timothy 3:12) Is there any wonder that our (those of us who actually believe that The Holy Bible is The Word of God) attempts to share TRUTH are often ‘buked and scorned, castoff with disgust, as if we’re such an annoying nuisance? That is until The Adversary rips into their comfortable lives threatening to destroy their self-orchestrated world! Can I get a good Amen?

Oftimes, these frantic inquirers have no clue that trouble does not discriminate between the just and the unjust. In fact, it’s almost as if Satan gets a double-kick out of terrorizing the saints even more than those rebellious unbelievers. Kinda makes you wonder if demons are rewarded with trophies for bringing down God’s Elect!

Nonetheless, God allows tests and trials to strike our lives, knowing full well that there’s a group of haters watching and waiting for you to faith, fail and fall! Remember, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.” Psalm 23:4-5

Hence, the greater the darkness, the brighter Light shines! It’s almost unfair, considering the supernatural advantage that we, who no longer rely on fate-based-circumstantial-evidence, have over the unregenerated souls. But, then again; favor ain’t fair!  #ijs

When the world sees you still standing, having endured the ravaging assault of hell’s fiery darts, surviving the very same pitfalls, hardships and struggles, yet determined to sanctify our hearts, trusting God regardless of what the circumstances look like! Talk about a REAL living testimony, huh?

Can you imagine the devastating gut-ravishing rage that your commitment to Christ causes in the Kingdom of Darkness? More importantly, can you imagine the joy, applauds, shouting and dancing erupting from Heaven’s angelic hosts, not to mention the cloud of witnesses cheering us on? (Ref. Hebrews 12:1) NOW AIN’T DAT AMAZING!

Come what may…whatever we go through, we have The Blessed Assurance that our Victory is inevitable! Okay, now that’s just too good to keep to yourself!

That’s exactly why we gotta keep telling everybody that what we have reaches far beyond this world and RESTS SOLELY IN THE ETERNAL HOPE PERSONIFIED, THE LORD JESUS CHRIST WHO REIGNS FOREVER! #SOUNDREASONABLE? #WOW!!!

SELAH!

Pause, Ponder, Pray & Praiz!

Ann Caffee

MEMORIES, huh?

MEMORIES, HUH

 

SELAH Daily Devotions!

 

When He slew them, then they sought Him; and they returned and inquired early after God. And they remembered that God was their rock, and the high God their Redeemer. Nevertheless they did flatter him with their mouth, and they lied unto him with their tongues. For their heart was not right with Him, neither were they steadfast in His covenant. But He, being full of compassion, forgave their iniquity and destroyed them not; yeah, many a time turned He his anger away and did not stir up all His wrath. For He remembered that they were but flesh, a wind passeth away, and cometh not again. Psalm 78:34-39

 

A few years back, (but who’s counting, huh?) Barbara Strissand recorded a hit song entitled ‘Memories’. This song pricked the hearts of all of us! Hence, we all have memories of days gone by that lure us back to the way we were. For some of us, when certain ticker-tapes of past personal experiences cross our minds, immediately we smile. Other flash-backs cause our hearts to flutter, skipping a beat… or two, remembering when. And then there are those special ones that yet…still prompt silent tears to crease our cheeks. Memories, huh? Some are fading and some, we only wish we could forget.

Like all of us, I indeed cling to God’s promises to keep my mind focused, sharp and sound. That being my faith stance, I must confess that—every now and then—I have to cash in what my kids call, one of my ‘senior moments’ vouchers. Now don’t look at me in that tone of voice. Can we be for real? I believe we all suffer a bout of ‘Spiritual Alzheimer’s’—every now and then.

Today’s scripture text recalls how the Israelites’ sporadic attacks of ‘forgetfulness’ provoked God’s wrath as He carried them through the wilderness. Now don’t be so hard on them. Truth be told, any one of us, drapped in this fickle-frail-flesh-frame, are just as prone to spiritual amnesia when it comes to recollecting the Wondrous works of God!

Time and time again, God has proven Himself a Faithful Provider, A Way-Out- of -No-Way, our Rock-in-A-Weary-Land, A Shelter-in our-Storm, A Strong Protector, Committed Redeemer and Eternal Hope of our Salvation.  HOWEVERRRR, in spite of our own personal memories of all that God has already done, the moment we’re faced with a new challenge, does our response reflect a confident trust in our Compassionate Merciful God of All Grace? Or do we suddenly forget to remember that if He Did It Before, He’ll Do It Again? Probably not, huh?  #ijs…

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Hebrews 13:8

BUT! THANKS BE 2 GOD! EVEN WHEN WE 4GET…GOD ALWAYS REMEMBERS…PRECIOUS MEMORIES, huh?

SELAH!

Pause, Ponder, Pray & Praiz!

Ann Caffee

 

EXPERIENCING HIM!

EXPERIENCING HIM

SELAH Daily Devotions!

 

Then the woman said to Elijah, “Now by this, I know that you are a man of God, and that the word of the Lord in your mouth is the truth.” 1 Kings 17:24

 

We’ve all heard it, probably said it ourselves! ‘We found Jesus’, as if He was lost, huh? Truthfully, no man can know GOD except GOD reveals GODSELF.  In fact, it is God who initiates the search and orchestrates the circumstances for the encounter! SERIOUSLY!

The Creator God has so wondrously fashioned man so that the ultimate fulfillment of life can only be consummated through his pursuit of intimacy with his Creator! Yet few are driven to forsake the lure of this world’s glitz and glamour to tread the least traveled remote pathways of The Kingdom. But every once in a while, a isolated sojourner will catch a glimpse of The Hope that placing ones personal trust in Jesus makes available to every man!

The Holy Writ is packed with stories of  The Heavenly Father’s compelling compassion to make Himself known!  For example, God sent The Prophet Elijah to an uncircumcised widow in the midst of a distressing situation! Nevertheless, this pagan woman dared to dismiss the visible and grab hold to the invisible (unseen to the natural eye)! Trusting that the Prophet’s instructions were actually The Words of God, her obedience proved a measure of her faith!

However, her faith took a quantum leap, when she experienced the miraculous power of God (the resurrection of her son from the claws of death) for herself! It’s one thing to hear others testify of God’s Supernatural Power; but when you witness His Glory personally, you enter into an exclusively different dimension of faith! #Didjaheardat?

As believers in Christ, our earnest heart cry ought to be that everyone come to know who Jesus really is! But the reality is, that it’s incumbent upon each individual to pursue their own intimate personal relationship with the Creator. This relationship is only accessible through seeking to know The God Who knows you!

Unless you were born late last night or arrived on planet earth early this morning, you probably already know that the gods of this world work relentlessly to distract us with troubles, in an attempt to discourage us from seeking after the heart of our Loving Father. Overwhelmed with fear and doubt, some stray further and further away from The True Source of comfort and peace! Yet, The Good Shepherd sovereignly uses these challenges to guide us safely through the fires, floods and the storms of this life to a face-to-face encounter with The Redeemer of our Soul!

In the midst of test, trials and tragedy, as you behold His Glory, you will gain unphantomable insight into the length, dept and width of His Loving Kindness and the Sufficiency of His Grace erupting into unspeakable joy and unparalled satisfaction!

That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death; Philippians 3:10

My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. James 1:2-5

Beloved, even in the midst of a dark fallen world, there’s no need for you to shrink back in fear! God has equipped our hearts with the Victorious Hope of Eternity! No matter what the challenge, we march on, confident that we are not alone! Faith in The Greater One, empowers believers to become agents of His Glory, touching and transforming as many lives as possible, while passing through this life on our way to our Heavenly Home!

TRUST2KNO HIM EXPERIENTIALLY! 

SELAH!

Pause, Ponder & Praiz!

Ann Caffee

 

GOD’S HELP!

GOD'S HELP B

SELAH Daily Devotions!

 

But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ. Ephesians 4:7

But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. Acts 1:8

 

OMG! Did we ever get dat twisted? GRACE that is!

Guilty! I remember it, just like Mama and probably her Mama and undoubtedly my own kids to theirs, asking, “DidjasayyourGrace?” God knows, we didn’t know! But now, knowing the true meaning and eternal value of GRACE, (God’s unmerited, unearned favor towards us) makes it even more Awemazzzin, huh?

 When Jesus conquered death, He ascended into Heaven and sent back to us the Precious Gift of Holy Spirit emboldening the Body of Christ (The Church), with everything we’d evrrr need to fulfill, not only our individual God-ordained purpose, but GOD’s Eternal Purpose in the earth—To colonize a God-Centered society giving Light and Life to a dark sin-filled world!

Howeverrr, didjakno that even today, some believers act as if Grace is simply a free pass to continue in sin?  SERIOUSLY! 

In essence, not only does such erroneous thinking usually lead to continuous rebellion, it completely misrepresents and dishonors Christ Jesus’ Sacrifice on The Altar at Calvary! Grace is more aptly recognized as God’s Divine Enabling Power Gifts, which He has Sovereignly equipped, measuring out to each believer, according to their specific tasks in The Kingdom of God!

While there are a variety of spiritual giftings, every gift is vital to the health of The Body! Hence, jealousy, envy, covetous and certainly competitiveness between our brothers and sister’s gifts is uncharacteristically absurd for a Christian, considering the Source is the same for each gift, The Holy Spirit! (Ref. 1 Corinthians 12) After all, these gifts are not given to boast in ourselves, but to boost up and to glorify The Kingdom of Heaven in the earth! That’s why the scriptures warn us that The BookKeeper is keeping track of every deed that is done in our bodies and one day we will all be judged for how we used our gifts to promote the advancement of The Kingdom of God to a lost and dying world! (Ref. 2 Corinthians 5:10)

Sounds to me like it’s a total abuse of time bickering and complaining about what somebody else has or doesn’t and even more foolish, wishin’ and hopin’ you had, huh? Hence, time might be more wisely appropriated by diligently seeking to discover our own ultimate “WHY and WHACHA COME HERE FOR!”

IN OTHER WORDS, WHATEVER GOD’S PUT ON YOUR HEART 2 DO 4 HIS GLORY, RECOGNIZE THAT HE’S FAVORED U TO WORK DAT THANG!  OH, AND DON’T WORRY ABOUT THE NAYSAYERS, WITH GOD’S HELP, FAILURE AIN’T EVEN AN OPTION!  #datzGRACE!

SELAH!

Pause, Ponder, Pray & Praiz!

Ann Caffee

 

THE NIGHT SHIFT!

 

the-night-shift

 

SELAH Daily Devotions!

Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. Psalm 121:4

 Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land. For I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.  Genesis 28:15 ESV

 

Whether you’ve been walking with Jesus for a long time or just recently made your decision to follow Christ, none of us are excluded from faith’s stresses, test and trials! If you don’t have a clue about what I’m talking about, may I draw from dem ol’ skool Mothers’ terminology, “Baby, jus keep getting up in the mornin’ and going to bed at night, sooner or later you will encounter a season in your life when you’ll feel as though God has left you in the valley of the shadows of death to fend for yourself!”

I understand that this kinda theology may seem a bit strange, (not to mention unbiblical, after all we live in the Dispensation of Grace) to some Millenniums who’ve been spoon fed Gospel-Lite-Prosperity pablum prepared by the more sophisticated-socially-acceptable-all-ingratiating-all-inclusive preachers! But check The Book, it’s still in there! “Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:” 1 Peter 4:12

Yet! When you’re forced to trample through the turbulence terrains of this life, know, that your Heavenly Father is not a dead-beat absentee Father. God has left His Eternal Word as a Light to the 21st Century Saints! Hence, The Word of God is still well able to comfort, strengthen and encourage those who seek Him!

Precious ones, perhaps, at this reading, you find yourself smack-dab-in-the-middle of a loooonnnnggg night of overwhelming fear and anxiety,  yet Truth remains! Even when you’re unable  to trace God’s Face or feel His Hand, trust His Heart!

Sometimes, we’re so focused on the trauma of the moment that we forget that we have a real enemy who delights in secretly launching attacks against God’s elect, under the cloak of darkness with his diabolical wiles, strategically aimed to diminish your confidence and trust in God!  Nevertheless,  don’t fall for the okey-doke…Satan ain’t running nothing! Your God is Sovereignly watching over you 24/7! He never naps! Day and night are the same to Him! Every step you take is Divinely-ordered by The Lord! He’s already gone before you preparing designated rest areas along the road to revive and re-energize our spirit and soul! #Didjaheardat? IT’S TRUE!

Beloved, when it seems as if everything is falling apart, Holy Spirit says, ‘It’s falling right in place’! Abba Father is weaving each piece of your life together for your greatest good and His Highest Glory! And at the appointed time, He will flip it over to display His Magnificent Masterpiece! (Ref. Romans 8:28)

“Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.” 1 John 3:2

Like Jacob, as we continue our pilgrimage through the gross darkness of this fallen world en route to the celestial city, we may all proclaim of our Savior “The God that led me all my life long” works THE NIGHT SHIFT!

SELAH!

Pause, Ponder, Pray & Praiz!

Ann Caffee

ARISE & SHINE!

arise-and-shine1

 

SELAH Daily Devotions!

Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee. Isaiah 60:1-2

 

Face it, every day ain’t the same! Some of us can’t even remember the last time we popped out of bed, headed for the gates, fortified with the zeal to take over anything or anyone who dared to challenge our God-ordained authority in the earth!

I know we saanng that song last Sunday morning, some of us even cut a step, “I been running for Jesus along Time, and I’m not tired Yet!” But, once we left the Euphoric atmosphere of the sanctuary and went back to da real-world, chances are that behind the plastic smiles and the colloquial ‘Blessed and Highly Favored’ many of us were bowed down, burdened and overwhelmed by unimaginable weights of everyday existence! Hush!  Yall know we can’t admit it to them religious folk, huh?  After all, how we feel has absolutely nothing to do with our relationship with God! We’re supposed to walk by faith, not by our feeling, right?

I know a man who walked this earth over 2,000 years ago; Who was despised. rejected, tortured,spat on and left to die hanging between Heaven and Hell! Awemaazingly, most of His persecution came from the very ones He came to save, heal and deliver!  WOW! YET! He was willing to deny His feelings and endure it all to finish His assignment given by His Heavenly Father! WOW! And we think we have it rough, huh?

Nobody told us that this journey would be easy! In fact, the exact opposite is True. “Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.” Matthew 16:24

Nevertheless, this same JESUS, illustrated to us, who dare to name the Name of Christ, how to take the hits and keep it moving! The scriptures reveal how our Savior was able to commit to God’s Process, even submitting to The Cross, death, hell and the grave! “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2 #Didjaheardat?

Jesus did not focus on the moment, but He concentrated on THE BIG PICTURE! Hence, in The Kingdom of God, purpose trumps pain! Before the foundation of the world, Jesus was perfectly committed to His Father’s Redemption Plan! It was the Joy of ensuring the restoration of God’s elect back to The Kingdom that motivated Jesus! Thankfully, He did not consider the price too extravagant, but a small thing to fulfill the Father’s Love.

Please understand, it’s not our intent to minimize the severity nor enormity of the issues challenging the faith, hope and peace of 21st Century Saints. However, those of us who have walked with Jesus over these past three decades, know that there’s one thing that has not changed! That’s The Word of God! God has called us to be The Light of this World! We, who put our personal trust in Jesus , our Eternal King, are reflectors of God’s Loving-kindness and Faithfulness! C’mon now, we’ve ALL got some personal history to verify that trouble don’t last always! Joy is comin’ in the morning!

Seems like we got this thing kinda backwards, huh?  We say, the world’s in darkness, yet they’re laughing, partying, turnin it up! While, God’s people are walking around with our heads hung down and our backs humped over? Something is sho nuff wrong with that picture! We’re heirs, joint-heir of The Kingdom of God! This is our heritage—righteousness, peace and joy in The Holy Ghost!

Perhaps today, you find yourself in the midst of a long dark night, remember although you don’t see the sun, it’s still there! Beloved, if you’re experiencing a power shortage and need to be re-connected to The True Power Source, The Son, U NEED 2 KNOW…He’s STILL THERE! Bow your heart, lift your hands, reach up and receive The Glory! Afterall, He’s already paid the Bill! ARISE & SHINE 4 HIS MERCY ENDURES 4EVER!

SELAH!

Pause, Ponder, Pray & Praiz!

Ann Caffee