A Choice To Serve


Joshua 24:15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.

Choices
Choices (Photo credit: Sky Noir)

Every day you realize you are awake and able to live another day, you have a choice to make.  In addition to the choices about what you will wear, what you will eat and what you will do first as you survey your list of options, you are responsible for an even greater choice. If you are not willing to make this choice, your decision is made for you. You can thank Adam for that. Whether you are God‘s child, or not, the life you live will always present opportunities for you to become willing to make a choice to serve the God who created the Heavens and the Earth or the gods of this world.

The choice is found in who you will serve –  who you will work for through the service of your life.  We all are destined to be used by God – goodness and evil are all manifested by God’s Sovereignty. Many of you seperate good from evil and designate good as being of God and evil exclusively being from Satan.  We need to consider Psalm 24:1 A Psalm of David and I Corinthians 10:26 An Epistle of Paul’s – “The earth is the LORD’S, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein”EVERYTHING THAT IS HERE AND EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENS HERE IS BECAUSE OF THE LORD’S SOVEREIGNTY. If you fail to accept this truth then your choice will always be manipulated by your own ideas.  Even the evil that manifests through you is under the authority of Christ today. 

Joshua was nearly at the end of his life when he delivered this sermon in Joshua 24. It gives attention to doctrine and application.  The doctrine is represented by all of the deeds in which the Lord God Almighty provided for His people. From the calling of Abraham, the birth of Isaac, the deliverance out of Egypt and through the Red Sea and their warring victories into the Promised Land, God proved His determined will and put it on display for the world to know. The Hebrews were recipients of the consistent manifestation of God’s Sovereign Power.  They had proof to know that no other god is comparable to the God of the Heavens and the Earth.  But it is the application of the sermon where we find the purpose of the choice to serve.

Your acquaintance with good and evil notwithstanding, it is a fundamental Biblical truth that when your flesh is controlled by sin you can not please God. You sow seeds of sin through all types of lifestyle choices.  Every decision you make is based on your pursuit to manifest and fulfill the desires of the flesh.  Joshua was reminded of Moses who declared the importance to choose life with a heart that loves the Lord, His Word all with a willingness to serve Him daily. Read Deuteronomy 30:11-20.  You can offset any affinity towards sin when you make a choice to serve God by praying for the knowledge of His will and the power to be all that He has created you to be. You can be of maximum service to God, realize the Conqueror Lifestyle  and serve Him and others effectively, when His power is working in you and through you conforming you to the image of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. But you can make this choice to serve God only because of the death, burial and resurrection of Christ which gives you access into His grace.

Others realize your choice by every word that comes out of your mouth, every deed of your hands and every direction that your feet move towards. The heart decides which choice is to be made.  A heart that is willing to freely surrender to God’s Sovereignty is a direct result of a quickened spirit connected to the power of the resurrection at work in you. It’s not hard at all to make Jesus your choice when you accept all that He has freely done for you.  You willingly desire to serve Him because of how effectively He serves you.  Stop trying to be your best you independent of God’s spiritual blessings at work in you. You will know true service as He manifests His good works in your life when you make the choice to depend on and serve Him in all that you say and do. Agree with me and Joshua and make your choice THE LORD.

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Let Him Lead You


"Lead Me, Guide Me" by Doris Atkers
Verse 1 
I am weak and I need Thy strength and power,                                        
To help me over my weakest hour. 
Let me through the darkness Thy face to see, 
Lead me, oh Lord lead me. 
Chorus 
Lead me, guide me along the way, 
For if you lead me I cannot stray. 
Lord, let me walk each day with Thee. 
Lead me, oh Lord lead me. 
Verse 2
Help me tread in the paths of righteousness.
Be my aid when Satan and sin oppress. 
I am putting all my trust in Thee: 
Lead me, oh Lord lead me. 
Verse 3 
I am lost if you take your hand from me, 
I am blind without Thy light to see.
Lord just always let me thy servant be,
Lead me, oh Lord lead me.

“Where Your Feet Are IS Where You Are”

Solid as a rock
Solid as a rock (Photo credit: Joybot)

     For years I struggled with the TRUTH in the slogan above.  Furthermore, for decades I maintained enormous opposition against the idea of “God‘s leading” over my life. As I look back over my life I can now see that all of my struggling with the prospect of surrendering to God’s will for my life was due to me wanting to be in control, my ego leading me in the fulfillment of the desires of my flesh and my human affinity towards being a product of this world rather than a servant of the God who created me. I could not “Be still and KNOW THAT GOD IS GOD” and appreciate all of the goodness that He brings into my life through His Sovereignty over my life. The best I could do was to continue spinning my wheels of human potential landing in life situations where I ultimately got stuck in ditches that got deeper and deeper over time. I could not appreciate the joy in the journey because I was always frustrated with one aspect (or another) of my life’s reality where I kept coming up short. 

     Along the way to the point of realizing God’s mission for my life, I came to appreciate all of the hardships, pain and suffering, grief, loss, guilt, shame and remorse my life manufactured. Today “I do not regret the past nor do I wish to shut the door on it.” Like Iyanla, “I did my work.” The evidence of the task is soon to be realized publicly with the release of the books. Today I can be grateful for where my feet are because my heart and mind are humbled under the “mighty hand of God.” There is a consistent awareness of God’s presence that sustains me. The reason for the presence of peace, love, joy, thanksgiving, faith and hope that wakes me up every day and preserves me throughout most of my days is because GOD IS LEADING ME. The essence of His leadership in and over my life is realized in the Conqueror Lifestyle that He prepared just for me. 

God has a Conqueror Lifestyle prepared just for you as well. To find out more about the Conqueror Lifestyle follow me on twitter @ConquerorShots.

 Darrin D. Payne

 

 

 

A Conquering Response to a Trending Lack of Love


A response to this article http://www.americapreachers.com/speak-out/pastor-says-no-to-women-wearing-weaves-in-church/
A response to this article
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God Goes In Deep


“I had to be STRIPPED of it.” This is a quote from a friend of mine who recently posted a piece on her blog entitled “The Blessing Is In The Pain.”  I was leaving a comment when the inspiration to write this piece  showed up.

No human being likes to lose. Losing anything from a wallet, to a bet, to a track meet, to a loved one (OR EVEN A WELL-PUBLICIZED COURT DECISION) is never something to get happy about. (at least in the early stages of the loss anyway!)  Let’s state the obvious here, “LOSING SUCKS.”  It is painful beyond words.  Yet it is in the pain that God reveals the POWER OF THE RESURRECTION AND THE GLORY HE IS DUE.

Your human nature is NEVER going to buy into this spiritual truth.  The only way to arrive at a place of inner humility under His mighty hand is to SUFFER.  In our suffering GOD GOES IN DEEP and begins to excavate through all of the sin that is exposed in our human nature and  renews us through His Spirit, HIS WORD, HIS PLAN, HIS POWER all at work IN US!!!!!   

Philippians 3:10 My aim is to know him, to experience the power of his resurrection, to share in his sufferings, and to be like him in his death,
 3:11 and so, somehow,to attain to the resurrection from the dead.  NET

Nothing makes a cushion for suffering better than the CROSS.
Nothing makes a cushion for suffering better than the CROSS.

 

As God begins to strip us of our cushions of materialism, idolatry, pride/ego, etc., you begin to mourn the loss. The pain increases in this God-ordained cycle.  However, at the point when you realize you had to be stripped, as Portia so wonderfully wrote, the blessing is in the pain.  In that moment your gratitude for God’s OMNISCIENCE has bloomed through all your suffering.  Then you can see how GOD will change you as you continue to humbly surrender to His SOVEREIGNTY on a daily basis. YOU BEGIN TO LOVE THE RESULTS of being “more than a conqueror through Him that loves us.” The Conqueror Lifestyle  is achieved and your winning begins.  YOU NO LONGER HAVE TO TRY TO FIX UP WHAT HE HAS ALLOWED TO BE  BROKEN. TRUE HUMILITY IS REVEALED IN YOUR WILLINGNESS TO RELY ON GOD’S ABILITY TO PUT YOU BACK TOGETHER AGAIN, PUT THAT LIFE BACK TOGETHER, THAT BROKEN HEART BACK TOGETHER, THAT HOME BACK TOGETHER, THAT CAREER BACK TOGETHER……….   Ultimately the losing is your catalyst to surrender which is the gateway to REAL WINNING!

Paul’s aim to know Christ intimately was a direct result of intense suffering. The suffering revealed God’s POWER in Paul’s life in a mighty way. This SAME power is available to you and I. ConquerorShots was born out of intense suffering. I am so grateful for all He has done and ALL HE IS UP TO IN ME AND THE LIFE HE HAS CALLED ME TO. ARE YOU??????

Consider the comment I was compelled to share with Portia.  God bless you my sister.  THANK YOU LORD FOR KNOWING HOW DEEP I NEEDED YOU TO GO ! 🙂

Losing all the "stuff" that the flesh "THINKS" it needs is painful but OH SO NECESSARY. Your post today reveals TRUTH that provides your readers with depth. God goes IN DEEP with us in our personal lives for the purpose of exposing our human nature & all the inadequacies which cultivate a desire from our core to realize the spiritual renewal we need to be His instruments. He resides in the depths of us. You can't stand for Him UNTIL He "goes in deep." Yes He knows the plans for us because HE CREATED US. How is it that humans don't get that TRUTH????? It's simple. They live after the flesh rather than the spirit. Well, I thank God that you do and that you exposed it here in this piece. To GOD BE THE GLORY FOR HIS GREAT PLANS REVEALED IN AND THROUGH US.

 

Willingness To Wait


wait
wait (Photo credit: CmdrFire) It’s Not As Difficult As You Might Think

When one is willing he/she is practicing the act of making a choice. Decision making is a process we are introduced to as early as our toddler years. Remember when you or your child was learning to walk. The toddler develops a comfortable stride and encounters the opportunity to demonstrate willingness. Will he walk up the stairs, down the stairs, out the door, outside the fenced area, etc. His willing heart will try to venture about with his new found gift – the ability to walk.

A Willingness to wait on the LORD requires faith. Faith in the death, burial and resurrection of Christ Jesus establishes the relationship between you and the LORD. The onset of the relationship is when you become willing to trust that He died, was buried and arose from the dead to save you from your sins and the judgement of eternal separation from God. Faith produces a willingness to believe that all things are working together for your good and the difficulties have intentional results DIRECTLY associated with His will JUST FOR YOU. REMEMBER He died so that you can live. Your life’s spiritual awakening, development and maturity is the relationship. During the maturity of the relationship, He uses the “waiting” to mature your faith through His Word. The Christian faith establishes the power of God in us through the resurrection of Christ Jesus. By this we are equipped to walk by faith; not by sight.

Christians are often referred to as “children of God” mainly because of the spiritual adoption principle found in Romans 8:14-15. We are His children always. When we are in receipt of the “gift of God, eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” we are forever classified as children of God which makes up the family of God here on Earth.

In today’s world we live in everybody wants everything NOW. NO ONE LIKES TO WAIT FOR ANYTHING – phone assistance, public transportation, traffic jams, DMV lines, restaurant seating, the cable man etc., etc., etc…  The wait produces the need to focus on God’s presence during the wait!
God is our refuge and strength – a very present help in trouble.

He maintains this description to ALL of His children no matter what level of spiritual maturity we are working with.Try as hard as you can to disprove this Heavenly attribute while you engage life matters from day to day. You will find that He Is ALWAYS present and He NEVER COMES UP SHORT. But you do all the time, and you will even try to blame others, including our Heavenly Father, for your own shortcomings. Ultimately you will find a need to wait on Him and encounter your own willingness to wait. In times of waiting, the trials will mature you and you will be better because of your willingness to wait.

Psalm 27:14  Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.
Psalm 130:5  I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.
Proverbs 20:22  Say not thou, I will recompense evil; but wait on the LORD, and he shall save thee.
Isaiah 40:31 But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.
Lamentations 3:25-26 The LORD is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him.
 It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD.

The fact is that a willingness to wait on the Lord is a practice that yields an experience similar to how a toddler practices his decision making skills when learning all the opportunity “at his feet.” My hope is that you will benefit from the use of the Conqueror Lifestyle to willingly wait on the LORD and grow in the process. It will help you soar to new heights In Christ that you could never experience outside of Christ. All of the possibilities are manifested in your willingness to wait. Waiting develops patience. Patience develops perseverance. Perseverance develops hope. Hope propels a Christian to maintain his/her position in Christ because He NEVER fails. Surrender to win and be a witness to the power of living victoriously day after day. 

 “Qualities of A Conqueror Volume 1” – a textbook/workbook compilation available now to help you develop and maintain The Conqueror Lifestyle.

Stay in the race!

If You Believe……..



Imagine Her Cameo Perfomance in "The Wiz"

“If you believe
Within your heart
You’ll know that no one can change
The path that you must go
Believe what you feel and know you’re right because the time will come around when you’ll say it’s yours…………That’s why I want you to believe in yourself right from the start. Believe in the magic right there in your heart. Go ahead believe all these things not because I told you to. But believe in yourself; If you believe in yourself; Just believe in yourself as I believe in you.” source:http://www.lyricsondemand.com/soundtracks/w/wizmusicallyrics/ifyoubelievelyrics.html

The Wiz was released on October 24, 1978. I was entering the preadolescent stage of development. My toddler aged sister was with my mom and I when we saw this groundbreaking movie. This was during a tumultuous season in my history as the dysfunction of my family was negatively impacting my maturity. The imagery of Ms. Lena Horne‘s performance singing “If You Believe” was a breathtaking moment as she entered the scene with an entourage of small, black babies, adorned in identical, purple outfits, complete with head coverings, as Ms. Horne captivated the screne and a stellar display of sparkling stars illuminated their background. At the close of her dialogue with Dorothy, the orchestral score initiated the transition and Ms. Horne delivered the soul stirring vocal captioned above.

How does this timeless portrayal of Glenda the good witch tie into this month’s theme – spiritual integrity? Here at ConquerorShots we maintain the definition of integrity as the quality or state of our spirit being complete or undivided. We stand on the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ and rely on the finished work at Calvary to realize spiritual completeness. This is the foundation of our belief in the power of God, NOT THE “MAGIC” IN YOUR HEART, through the Holy Spirit working in and through us from day to day. The results of which are a cumulative source of power to spiritually conquer our biggest enemy – sin.

The lyrical content of “believe” in the song has a strong identification in one’s self. However, ConquerorShots maintains that “self” needs a Savior in order to be its best. The Word clearly defines the condition of our heart i.e. “self” as “deceitful and above all desperately wicked…..”So, today the lyrical content helps to apply the principle of spiritual integrity in a defining way where we can attain belief in “self.”

When you have “Blessed Assurance” in your heart – not in your mind – about the finished work at Calvary and how it serves your spiritual needs from day to day, you are NO LONGER left with the task of being the source of your own destiny. God has provided all of the Mastery of ordering your steps before you lived your first day. Ephesians 2:10 reminds us that “we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus, unto good works, which God has prepared in advance that we should walk in them.”

The spiritual principles of Honesty, Hope, Faith and Courage, all stemming from a healthy spiritual appetite for the Word of God and prayer, serve our daily belief system in “The Christ in us”. If you believe in yourself from this prospective, as God believes in you because He CREATED you, you have a ROCK SOLID foundation in spiritual integrity that can NOT be shaken from day to day.

Experience the blessing of SECURITY in CHRIST which yields FREEDOM to be who GOD created you to be IF YOU BELIEVE.



	

Honestly


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