Humble Thanks


After much time spent on releasing our second book “Qualities of a Conqueror Vol. 1” and experiencing real change personally, the Lord God Almighty beckoned me to write here. God willing ConquerorShots will regularly coincide with our “#TellUrSelf tweets.”  Ultimately you will experience spiritual delicacies to enhance your experience living the Conqueror Lifestyle. Our goal is to make it easier for you to get familiar with our Christian brand through our books, ConquerorShots, upcoming workshops and teaching materials and more all to enhance your walk with God through Christ Jesus one day at a time.

 

Psalm 136:26 NET BIBLE Give thanks to the God of heaven, for his loyal love endures! If you have never read this chapter we suggest you do so and make it a regular reading for your personal gratitude prayers. Giving thanks, i.e. gratitude, is a necessary daily experience children of God, MTaCs, practice. We learn that in giving thanks we find the production of the fruit of the Spirit manifesting in amazing circumstances. God, who created the Heavens and the Earth, you and I and everything we appreciate while we are living day by day, is worthy of our daily gratitude because of His loyal love. The NET Bible uses the word loyal so perfectly here. No matter what we do, or do not do, in the way of service to God and others, God’s love for us NEVER changes! He is the most loyal love I have ever known.

 

When we put emphasis on gratitude for the material, human accomplishments – education, money, success, children, spouses, careers, houses, land, cars, boats, vacations et al – we are subject to the evil of deception and confusion as we focus on the Earthly rather than the Heavenly.  This is where the application of “Humble Thanks” is best realized. When you are in spiritual acceptance of your NEED for a Savior, and Jesus Christ is REAL to you, you willingly humble your human nature under the authority of God.

Wenceslas Hollar - The kneeling sinner
Wenceslas Hollar – The kneeling sinner (Photo credit: Wikipedia) A Depiction of Humble Thanks to God

By regular confession of sins, transgressions, iniquity, guilt,shame and fear before Him in prayer and thanksgiving for the simplest of blessings you come to realize through your need for His providence, you will humble yourself under God’s mighty hand for His continual protection and power in your life and the lives of others. The air you breath, the blood running warm in your veins, the activity of your limbs and your mind being sane and at peace become blessings of enormous praiseworthiness.

 

In humble thanks to God’s loyal love which endures through any and all human conditions, your gratitude will always be acceptable to God and it will reflect His love off of you into many other lives, situations, circumstances and conditions here on Earth. Heaven is our home but the Earth is our training ground. Be humble before God as your realize your spiritual training. Every scripture in Psalm 136 KJV ends with “His mercy endureth for ever” to emphasize that all of the human accomplishments acknowledged in the list exist because of the eternal endurance of God’s faithful, goodness and kindness towards His children. Give humble thanks daily and create your own list – IT WORKS!

 

Stay in the race!

 

Darrin

 

Blessed Freedom


I have not written a ConquerorShot in quite some time. My life’s journey has allowed me to realize new opportunities to write, speak, teach and live the Conqueror Lifestyle. Yet I have missed this outlet to share truth relative to life situations and how we experience the “more” in Romans 8:37 . This month’s principle is INTEGRITY. Today, in my awakening, the resounding voice of truth of the blessed freedom we, children of God, possess, gave me clarity of mind and spirit as I reflect on God’s faithfulness. I pray that every reader and follower will rejoice with me in knowing that John 8:36 says “So if the son sets you free, you will be really free.(NET)”  “Our God IS FAITHFUL.

On Tuesday morning my awakening was a source of thanksgiving and reflection. Often times family matters between husband/wife, father/son, father/daughter, brother/brother and brother/sister offer challenges that affect us to the core.  The saying is true “no one can hurt you more than family.”  I can testify to that from both perspectives – the hurt and the hurtful. Yet I have come to realize in my reflection that God is ALWAYS in control of ANY given situation and my readiness to acknowledge His Sovereignty in ANY gut wrenching situation is how I continue to experience His blessed freedom. The Conqueror Lifestyle© can preserve and provide you with this outlook on any given day.” (Rev. D)

I was awakened by a phone call from my daughter (progress) “Daddy, I need you to come here… I WAS IN AN ACCIDENT… HURRY DADDY!”  As the urgency in her voice called me to immediate action to “get there” I rushed to my 2 car garage (progress) and got in my car (progress) to go and see about my “baby girl.”  I was too “busy” to pray, ponder a principle, reflect on Scripture or anything concerning my spiritual hygiene and therefore it was on “auto.” Similarly, I had not brushed my teeth, washed my face or showered my body. My call to action only gave me time to “get there.” When I pulled up I immediately noticed her car.  Then I saw her standing there on the side of the curvey, 2-lane, slippery road. To my surprise she was standing, tall, unharmed in any way from this obvious loss of control with life-threatening potential. I had to contain myself concerning my visceral response to what I realized driving up. As I hurried over to her my heart was pounding with overwhelming joy for God’s faithfulness. “He protected my daughter once again!”

My 1st image of my daughter's 1st  accident
My 1st image of my daughter’s 1st accident

 

As I grabbed her into my arms I could feel her tension as she was in shock. Her embrace was firm until she exhaled and sobbed in anguish over what she had just experienced.  The obvious loss of her car was annunciating  her regret as she was just starting to get used to her freedom of having her own vehicle in her fourth week. As I listened to her lament over this apparent MTaC” moment, the Lord reminded me of this passage of scripture:

7 The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear Him, And rescues them. 8 O taste and see that the LORD is good ; How blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!(Psalm 34:7-8 NASB)

While I was on my way to “get there” God and His angels “were already there!”  There was no other way to help her than to share my thanksgiving for the faithfulness of God concerning my daughter and His child. He gave His angels charge over the entire aspect of her first accident. What I knew as I drove up was she was driving in the same direction I was, yet her car did not hit the tree HEAD ON! The impact was TOTALLY absorbed by the rear of her car as it amazingly was ‘TURNED AROUND.”  She could not explain how it ended up in that position as she described the spinning experience as she braced herself for impact. But God was fueling my spirit with the POWER, THE SAME POWER, that managed her miraculous outcome. He was the reason for her protection, safety, and most of all her blessed freedom to walk away from that accident without ANY injury to her body.

I COMMENCED PRAISE & THANKSGIVING by testifying of His goodness, grace and faithfulness all around that accident scene and reminded her of the evidence as she was standing there, tall and beautiful, unharmed with no visible scars. There was no need to visit the ER and, as she would later prove, she was in good enough condition to go on to school later that morning and take a physics test, pass it and maintain her A average. There is Blessed Freedom in knowing God IS able!!!

In the same manner, I am fortunate enough to have an ongoing experience with Blessed freedom as the Conqueror Lifestyle continues to make my pathway straight. I told you I had not performed any spiritual hygiene or bodily hygiene as I rushed to “get there”  But the fact that I have routinely upheld my responsibilities towards personal and spiritual hygiene daily prior to the accident, there was evidence of it as I had to interact with my daughter, the officers, the tow truck driver and even myself. The qualities of a conqueror include being prepared to walk in the freedom that is realized as I maintain my position In Christ. His blessed freedom is possible because I continue to trust in, rely on and believe that His Power is in me. If you know Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior, He will sustain you, protect you, provide for you, mature you and most of all bless you with “more than you could ever ask or think of.”  We serve a Mighty God with unlimited resources. It is in your best interest to allow for your integral attachment to the Spirit of Christ, through His death, burial and resurrection to sustain your integrity in Him on a daily basis. The results include Blessed Freedom to realize His faithfulness.  “John 8:36 says “So if the son sets you free, you will be really free.(NET)” 

 

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God’s Love Teaches Us How It’s Done


I John 4:16-19NASB

16. We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 17. By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment ; because as He is, so also are we in this world.18. There is no fear in love ; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves punishment, and the one who fears is not perfected in love. 19. We love, because He first loved us.  Learn Gods Love Today

Not Outside Then Inside………


God gave us the cogent example of the Pharisee in the Gospels to demonstrate how human wisdom and human interpretation of God’s word leads to spiritual blindness. The Pharisees were experts in the letter of the law but they did not have a clue about the significance of Christ – whose identity originates in the Old Testament to prophets like Moses, who wrote the Torah.

Consider the lesson contained in the reaction Christ demonstrates towards the Pharisees.

Cup and Saucer
Cup and Saucer (Photo credit: Cookieater 2009) WHAT GOES INSIDE IS MORE IMPORTANT THAN THE BEAUTY ON THE OUTSIDE

If you too are so focused on keeping your outside clean for others to think you have it all together, yet you continue to neglect God’s goodness to your spirit, through his love, forgiveness, grace and mercy at Calvary, then, like the Pharisees, you too are guilty of hypocrisy.



Matthew 23:23 "Woe to you, experts in the law and you Pharisees, hypocrites! You give a tenth of mint, dill, and cumin, yet you neglect what is more important in the law — justice, mercy, and faithfulness! You should have done these things without neglecting the others.
 23:24 Blind guides! You strain out a gnat yet swallow a camel!
23:25 "Woe to you, experts in the law and you Pharisees, hypocrites!You clean the outside of the cup and the dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence.
 23:26 Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup, so that the outside may become clean too! (NET Bible)

Hold On to Truth – “IN GOD WE TRUST”: A Warning AGAINST Political Deception


161/365 - 06/10/11 - In God We Trust
161/365 – 06/10/11 – In God We Trust (Photo credit: Shardayyy)

I am perplexed over a matter that I know is controversial among humans. Why is it that Biblical truth is not an anchor in the choice for who to follow politically? This week I have pondered this stark reality as I listen to political news broadcasts, read political new articles and listen to the talking heads a.k.a political pundits debate their views about the 2012 Presidential candidates strategies, viewpoints, dilemmas, achievements and forecasts.

The economy is a major issues that will steer the American voter’s choice on November, 6, 2012. MONEY is the central theme of any economy. How it is made and how it is spent is determined by our President and Congress. Americans who are financially comfortable have one view-point and Americans who are not financially comfortable have another view-point. The view-points are a driving factor that fuels the decision-making process of the voter. Though there are other issues of consideration in the campaigns, there is a significant emphasis on the state of affairs on economics.

My perplexity’s foundation is  in the trickery that the right-wing Christian conservatives have adopted and portray in the support they garner for  Mr. Romney’s campaign. There is a monumental heir of evil associated with the deception of the republican regime. Here at ConquerorShots we continue to uphold the banner of truth about God’s Word. Historically, from a Biblical perspective of the events in the Old Testament and the upcoming prophetic events, any effort that man can make to put more emphasis on the creation (atheism and agnosticism thrive from this prospective), and not the Creator, meets profound, life-changing events where God’s power prevails unequivocally. Yet man continues to follow the path of manifesting his will rather than endeavoring to keep the focus on Him who created us all. I am concerned about the nature of the Republican party’s agenda being a course for evil to attempt to prevail over a blessed nation that has shifted its focus  far AWAY from the Creator.

The manner in which I hear the commentary about the state of the economics in America is a direct indicator to harness a specific wretchedness in their economic affairs and agendas. This is nothing new. The Apostle Paul had a full understanding of this human dilemma and warned us with No uncertainty.

TO ALL “Right wing Christian conservatives” PLEASE CONSIDER GOD’S WORD YOU PROFESS TO BELIEVE IN TODAY: 

1 Timothy 6:8 But if we have food and shelter, we will be satisfied with that.
 6:9 Those who long to be rich, however, stumble into temptation and a trap and many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction.
 6:10 For the love of money is the root of all evils. Some people in reaching for it have strayed from the faith and stabbed themselves with many pains.

The number of “right-wing conservative Christians” who REFUSE to “HOLD ON TO TRUTH” are failing both America’s heritage and the God they claim to have personal relationship with.

The apex of my perplexity is in the “How” and “Why” of this monumental shift in belief. Have you even taken the time to consider the religious platform that Mr. Romney represents openly? I am a supporter of an American’s right to worship whomever and however they choose. Furthermore, I fully grasp the concept of the ecumenical movement worldwide. But all human beings who profess to be “members of the Body of Christ” i.e. Christians are spiritually supplied with a bond that maintains God’s truth based in His Word. IT IS UNDENIABLE! Therefore, it is crucial that you do NOT neglect the opportunity for your vote to show who AND what you TRULY BELIEVE IN!

Mormonism is NOT Christianity. Here’s why:

1. Mormons believe there are "many" Gods. Christians believe in One Triune God.http://www.triunegod.org/
2. Mormons believe Man was also in the beginning with God.  Intelligence, or the light of truth, was not created or made, neither indeed can be"  (D&C 93:29). Christians believe Man is a finite being, not an eternal one.  The first man Adam was created at a specific point in time (Ge 1:26-27; 2:7; 1Co 15:45-49).
3. Mormons believe Christ's death on the cross (the atonement) canceled the penalty of death imposed on ALL men through Adam's sin, thereby ensuring that all men would be redeemed - resurrected and given immortality (the reuniting of spirit with body)-as a gift.
"If there had been no atonement, temporal death would have remained forever, and there never would have remained forever, and there never would have been a resurrection.  The body would have remained forever in the grave" (Mormon Doctrine, 1977 ed., p.63)
"Redemption from death, through the sufferings of Christ, is for all men, both the righteous and the wicked" (Ibid., p. 65) 
and 
Christians believe not everyone is blessed through Christ's crucifixion.  Only those who accept His sacrifice and surrender themselves to Him (Ro 10:9) will receive the benefit of Jesus' death and resurrection, which is forgiveness of sins (Ac 10:43) and salvation (Ro 3:24).  Eternal life "in Christ," and not just simply eternal existence through resurrection, is the gift offered by God to humanity (Ro 6:23).  This gift is obtainable only by grace through faith (Eph 2:8-10). Jesus' death serves to reconcile all believers to God (Ro 5:10).  In dying, Jesus broke down the wall of separation between us and God that was present through man's disobedience to the Law (Eph 2:11-22)
(http://contenderministries.org/mormonism/comparison.php)

Silent Forgiveness


Shhhhh....
Shhhhh…. (Photo credit: Valerie Everett)

Saying “I’m sorry” is the first act of humility that can bring about a life changing experience based in forgiveness. The person who you wronged may spend months, years, even decades desiring to hear these words. While waiting to hear these words, fueled by a spirit of anger, resentment, loss, fear and pain,his/her life can be greatly affected by the elements of negative behaviors – drugs, alcohol, crime, etc. Whatever the actions which brought about the wrong needing correction with  an apology, the overall damaging affects can never be erased. There are no words that can efface the subsequent issues wreaking havoc in his/her life because of what you said, did or did not do.

How does silence help the healing in forgiveness? How can silence be a catalyst to forgiveness? Can there be a visceral response to inaudibility? Of course, the answer is yes! How? This question would likely follow. Here is what I know today.  When there are elements of disconnect that create boundaries which prevent a needed verbal exchange of apology, silence is your best alternative. When you try to communicate to the best of your ability and all your efforts to apologize are not welcomed, silence is your defensive ally. When you have the opportunity to communicate remorse and you are quieted by his barrage of anger in reply to your effort to apologize, silence speaks forgiveness more than any words.

It takes an ongoing spirit of humility from a renewed heart that becomes willing to apologize for wrongdoings. However, your willingness to speak an apology must be met with a willingness to hear the apology. If the opportunity is constantly unavailable because of those boundaries the sufferer has positioned in his/her life as a means of protection from any additional pain from you, the solution is silent forgiveness- not from the sufferer but from you. You must be able to continue to “accept the things you can NOT change.” Silent forgiveness begins in you. The sufferer will become a recipient of your forgiveness of yourself for your wrongs and the sufferers actions that are fueled by fear, anger, hurt and pain that you caused. This is the epitome of love.

The best example I have to cite is the suffering of Christ. Here we delve into the sometimes controversial aspect of His Deity during His earthly ministry. We learned that at the time of His baptism, John the Baptist declared Him to be “the lamb of God which taketh away the sins of the world.” That was His mission. At the time when the Hebrews rejected Christ, they turned on Him and supposed that His claims of being the Son of God was criminal. They wanted Him dead. But He was God in the flesh! He knew more than just what was seen at the time of His earthly ministry. He was on a mission and that was prophesied in Isaiah 53 – that of being crucified.

Isaiah 53:7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.

 

All of the times when He made attempts to gain their faithfulness as a Nation, His desires went unmet. They took all they could get from Him but in the end they did not want Him around. Instead, they wanted Him to be nailed to a cross, hanging, bleeding, suffering unto death – the most horrible, degrading form of death known to them. And He did it willingly. He did not need to plead his case, retaliate against his opposition or “change their minds” about who He is. He was fulfilling a mission that was determined even before the world began. The essence of His “Silent Forgiveness” is realized when, while hanging on the Cross, He uttered “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.”

Your silent forgiveness is motivated by the same source of love resting firmly in your spirit as a direct result of knowing who you are in Christ. Your willingness to make right the wrongs of your past to him/her is based in your love. You can not experience unfeigned, self love if you have not accepted Christ’s undying love for you and the sufferer. Acceptance of the “finished work” at Calvary and the resurrection gave you the opportunity to become a “joint heir” with Him today. You, a wretched sinner who inflicted pain and misery in loved ones’ lives because of your own selfish desires and the sufferers who have their own crosses to bear because of your actions, are ALL forgiven under the blood that Jesus shed at the Cross. God gave His only begotten Son to suffer, bleed, die and resurrect just for you! And not just for you but for all who would by faith believe in Him. That’s the love that every soul in need of a Savior desires and every spirit washed in the precious blood of the lamb experiences daily.

This love is the catalyst for a “new creation in Christ… old things are passed away and behold ALL things are new.” This is a process that overshadows any obstacles that sin can attempt to block God’s will. Therefore, since you have been redeemed by the precious blood of the lamb, you do NOT get to determine what actions you can give/receive forgiveness for and which ones that you will never be forgiven for. Forgiveness of sins is not on a sliding scale! At the Cross, ALL sin is forgiven once and for all! Silent forgiveness then is the act of receiving the forgiveness that resulted at Calvary and being willing to forgive others without ever speaking a word. In God’s time he/she will also forgive you. God is able! TRUST HIM AND LIVE AN ABUNDANT LIFE IN HIM!

A Confirming Breeze


Mostly everyone has a light switch   on the wall of an entryway into their home. When you come in at night it is customary to hit the switch to “light up” the darkness of the dwelling. This action is an unrealized willingness to exercise faith in what you can NOT see. Electricity is the source of power that runs through the domiciles of the world to provide a “power source” to run appliances, heating/air conditioning gadgets and the most important element – light. What does electricity look like?

A building without electricity is like a dead body. On the outside it looks fine – absent of decay – but on the inside there is no activity because there is no power. Unseen electrical currents in either source provide for the presence of power and the opportunity to experience life. We come to rely on the power of electricity so heavily that we pay for it no matter what the cost.  We need power to run our homes, businesses, churches and society. Conversely, we NEED the power of the Spirit of God to experience the abundant life Jesus spoke of. Joh 10:10 “10 “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy ; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”NASB  The power of God is confirmed daily and the abundant life is possible because of the finished work at Calvary.

Like electricity, we can NOT see God. Yet, as Christians, we exercise a faith in His presence from day-to-day. We come to rely on His presence through the affirmation of His power revealed in us and through us. His power is most assuredly realized through the gospel of the Grace of God. Titus 2:11 says “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men” Romans 1:16 adds For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.” NASB       Human beings find it easier to trust in electricity more than they can trust in the power of God. 

For nearly 20 years, June 15th marked the beginning of a series of annual celebrations for me – marriage, birthday and Father’s Day. Today, like last year, the celebration is no more. The affects of divorce have taken the celebrations I learned to anticipate. Instead, there is a willingness to “show up” and live life one day at a time, a desire to realize the love of Christ which enables me to experience a “conqueror lifestyle,” and a spirit of liberty which fuels a pursuit to “accept what God allows” everyday. I thank God that in the midst of my losses He is my gain. A summer breeze confirms His power.

Change is difficult sometimes but the results of the difficulty are “working together for the good of them who love the Lord;to them who are the called according to His purpose.” It(change) has given rise to darkness and uncertainty on many occasions. I love the song Amazing Grace for many reasons, all of which consume my spirit with a realistic appreciation and gratitude for God’s uncensored grace abounding richly in my life.

Phlox subulata 'Amazing Grace'
Phlox subulata ‘Amazing Grace’ (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
 Amazing grace! How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me!
I once was lost, but now am found;
Was blind, but now I see.
’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,
And grace my fears relieved;
How precious did that grace appear
The hour I first believed!Through many dangers, toils and snares,
I have already come;
’Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far,
And grace will lead me home.

The heat in Atlanta can be brutal. When I moved here from the north, a conversation with a deacon in the church about the lack of cool breezes during the hot summer days enlightened me. At that time I had a large amount of grass that I would maintain in the afternoons. Deacon Knuckles told me that I was going about it all wrong. I had no clue and so he offered me some of his Georgia bred wisdom.  His explanation yielded a new-found awareness and appreciation for the early mornings and late evenings in which we inevitably experience a breeze outside. His recommendation was to rearrange my schedule for landscaping to coincide with these times of the hot summer days. It worked.

A breeze made all the difference in my experiences working outside. A few years later, the tribulation of having major surgery changed my life forever. During the first 6 months of recovery, and learning how to walk again, it was a time of darkness. I was overcome with despair, grief, heartache, uncertainty and an unusual amount of physical pain. My days and nights were consumed with loneliness, fear and anxiety. Even though my children, wife and mother-in-law were there with me, they could NOT offer me any power. They tried by being there and doing for me the simplest tasks that I could not do for myself and I appreciate them immensely.  But I needed more.

My home therapy included using my walker and walking in intervals of 5 minutes. Over time I was up to 15 minutes. That progress allowed for me to exercise some courage to go outside to my driveway. There I would work to increase my walk time. The backyard is decorated with an assortment of tall trees – oak, dogwood, cedar and maple – in the large wooded area. Prior to my recovery, I only appreciated their response to wind when stormy weather hit our neighborhood. The motion in the trees would “speak” to me in a way that I knew when the weather pattern was threatening.

One day while struggling to walk my routine I experienced the blessing of a confirming breeze. I was stuck physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. As the tears rolled down my face on the beautiful summer day while standing in my driveway on my walker, God’s presence was once again realized as the cool, confirming breeze swept over our subdivision. The natural response of the trees yielded a heralding sound of the leaves response to the force of the breeze. The trees began to sway with ease as the unclouded sky revealed the splendor of the sunlight. It was majestic, unlike all of my earlier exposure to the outside elements. It said to me “I am here…..fear not…..”

My tears dried up and my body was overcome with a spirit of amazement as I realized God’s presence being confirmed in the breeze of a summer day. It forever heightened my appreciation for God’s grace. You can’t see the wind but the breeze makes itself known through the responses of all the matter of the earth. You can’t see God’s presence but you can experience all the fullness of His power that can change your entire prospective and outlook on life. God uses change to confirm His presence, His power and His grace. I made it back  inside and picked up my dusty Bible and the Lord’s confirming power was further revealed in this popular passage:

Ephesians 3:14 For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named,
16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man;
17 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,
18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height;
19 And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.
20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,
21 Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen. KJV

Experience the blessing of a confirming breeze.