Living by Faith

faith

Let me start off by saying that I fail God daily. Every. Single. Day. I. Fail. Him.

I don’t really know if this blog helps anyone else, but it helps me and it keeps me in check. I write a new post whenever God lays something on my heart. Usually it is on what I am dealing with or going through. God’s been working on me a lot here lately. I am thankful for that!

I have been lacking in my faith. I used to have so much faith but it seems here recently that my faith is lacking. I’ve been questioning myself as to why my faith is lacking. God hasn’t changed, so I know that isn’t it. He never changes. I started examining my life and trying to pinpoint exactly why, when and how it happened. What have I let get in the way? What has gotten in the way? The answer? Iva has gotten in the way. Iva has doubted God’s love. What does God’s love have to do with my faith? Everything. Faith doesn’t work without love. Galations 5:6For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love.

Faith works by love. At first I was confused by this. Utterly confused. I heard it explained like this. Imagine curtains. You have to have a rod to hang curtains. Try to hang curtains with the curtains on the hooks and not have a rod. The curtains will end up on the floor. Love is the rod that you hang your life on and faith are the hooks. When I heard this analogy, it was like a light bulb went ding ding ding! Bingo! Yatzee! Here it is Iva. Here is your answer. Deep down I have been doubting God’s love for me. I know. Stupid, right?

When I got up the morning that this all me I was in a horrible mood. Some possibly bad news had been given to my husband the day before. I was angry that God would give something then take it away especially something we needed. I drove to work angry. I was moody and grumpy at work and then out of no where the song Living by Faith came to my mind. Living by faith in Jesus above. Trusting confiding in His great love; from all harm safe in His sheltering arm, I’m living by faith and feel no alarm. I love when that happens. God always puts a song on my mind right when I need it. I looked up the hymn and read all the lyrics. I am a lyric nerd. I have trouble with lyrics. Just ask my husband. I sing songs around the house all the time and if I don’t know the lyrics I make them up. Kyle calls me out on it and I say I was just freestylin. Because of this, I like to look up what the lyrics actually are to songs that pop in my head. I also like to hear the song so I typed in Living by Faith on YouTube. I listened to the song and in the suggestions was a message by a preacher named Creflo Dollar. I listened to it and I was blessed. I highly recommended that you watch it. You can listen to it here: The Just shall live by faith

There are 4 verses in the bible that specifically say the just shall live by faith. If it says it 4 times you know it is important!

Habakkuk 2:4 “Behold, his soul which is lifted up is not upright in him: but the just shall live by faith.”

Romans 1:17 “For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.”

Galatians 3:11 “But no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.”

Hebrews 10:38 Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.”

So we know the just shall live by faith but what does that mean exactly? What is faith by definition? Merriam-Webster says it is: (1) allegiance to duty or a person: loyalty; belief and trust in and loyalty to God (2)belief in the traditional doctrines of a religion: firm belief in something for which there is no proof: complete trust (3) something that is believed especially with strong conviction; without question.

What is the biblical definition of faith? Hebrews 11:1 “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.”

Faith is the substance (stuff or essence or base) of the things we hope for but have not actually seen. The bible tell us to walk by faith. (2 Corinthians 5:7) We are to live our lives by love and faith. We need love to have faith. Faith is the belief in God’s love for us. God loves me and I am confident that he will provide for me. He loves me and that is why I have faith in Him and His ability to take care of me. He loves me so much that he would send His only begotten son to die on a cross, bare the sin of the world so that we all could go to Heaven if we accept Christ in our hearts.

I listened to lies from Satan. He is good at his job. Satan will whisper lies. Things like, God isn’t going to take care of you, God will not do that, don’t count on God to make that happen, God doesn’t love you, God won’t forgive you, God can’t use you because you failed, God can’t use you because you’re different, God doesn’t care about you having a car, God doesn’t care about you having a house and so many other lies straight outta the pits of hell. We start to lose our confidence. We doubt ourselves and we doubt God’s love. Hebrews 10:35 “Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward.”

Satan will attack your confidence. He will remind you of past mistakes, shortcomings and failures to get your state of mind to make you feel like you are under God’s judgement instead of the blood.  It will make you think that God won’t help you because of something you did in the past. That is not true. If you are a born again Christian, you are under the blood! Yes we will fail and fall short. When you do you can go to God in prayer and ask for forgiveness and he will lift you up.

When you pray, pray with the confidence that God will do what you have asked Him. I think faith and confidence go together. I sit in my chair because I am confident it will hold me. Because God loves me, he will provide for me. Phillipians 4:19 “But God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” The bible says it right there. He will provide my need according to HIS riches in glory. All that I have is His. Anything that I get it His. I just get to borrow it.

I love when God takes the veil off so that I can see the things I need to. I don’t know if anyone else ever feels or has felt the way that I had been but this helped me. God loves His children. He will take care of us. That doesn’t mean we won’t have trials or hard times. This means that God will provide for us when we need it.

God I ask that you would lift the veil off those who need it lifted off so that their eyes can see what you need them to see through your word. Help those today who may be struggling and those whose faith is being tested. Give them the strength they need to endure and let them feel your loving arms. I ask all these things in your name. Amen.

May all of you have a blessed Easter. He is risen!! Today is Friday… but Sunday is coming!!

Love from above, Iva Mae

he is risen

P.S. I apologize if this post seemed scatter brained. It took me 3 days to finish this.

 

Broken </3

We hear the word broken and typically the first thing that comes to mind is – “How are we gonna fix it?” or “How are we going to replace it?”

We have broken cars, washers, refrigerators, lawn mowers, plumbing, bones, lives, families, hearts, dreams  and homes.

What is the actual definition of broken? Is it something so far gone that it cannot be fixed? It is something meant to be left broken or is it meant to be fixed?

According to Oxford Dictionary Broken is:

  1. having been fractured or damaged and no longer in one piece or in working order:

synonyms: smashed · shattered · fragmented · splintered · crushed

  1. (a person) having given up all hope; despairing:synonyms: defeated · beaten · subdued · demoralized · dispirited

So broken is something damaged. It can be something that isn’t whole (one piece), It can be shattered, crushed, smashed or splintered. It can be something that no longer works. It can even be someone who has given up.

Recently my husband and I both have broken bones. I broke my toe and he broke his finger. I was angry when I broke my toe. I was so angry. It was an accident. Accidents happen but I didn’t want something like that to happen to me. I have too many things to do and I couldn’t walk as fast and could barely walk at all. I thought how could something so small cause me so many problems? My husband went roughly through the same thing. He couldn’t put his boots on or take them off. He found himself frustrated that he wasn’t physically able to do something. Both of us have had a lot of physical pain associated with these breaks.

I found myself really behind on my housework, laundry, dishes and everything else. My house was a mess and still kind of is. All of that got me thinking about how our bodies work. My toe is a small member of my body but when it is broken, my entire body and life suffers. The same goes with the body of Christ. When a member is broken, no matter how small, it is noticeable and until there is healing the whole body will suffer.

When a person is broken that doesn’t mean we need to fix them or that they are no longer worth saving. Jesus came to save the world and provide healing to those who are broken. God tells us so in His word. Isiah 53:5 “He was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.”

by his stripesWhen we are broken we need rest. We need God to pick up the pieces and make them whole again. Our church had a revival a few weeks ago. I was only able to make it to one night. The night I went, the preacher preached about being broken by things we allow into our lives and by circumstances. He had a flower pot and spun it around in his hands and threw it up and caught it. He said we allow more and more things into lives and we let our vessel get loose. The next thing you know your vessel ends up so loose that it falls from your hands and breaks. He threw the pot behind him and it broke into many pieces. He said you can try and try to pick up the pieces but you can’t. He also said you can’t be used when you are a broken vessel. God won’t use a broken vessel. (One reason when members of the body of Christ are broken the whole body suffers)

broken pot

The only way to get whole again is to get down on your knees and ask God to heal you and forgive you and to help you. He got down on his knees as he said this. He said God will pick up your pieces and he will put you back together again. He held up a new pot for us all to see what God can do with our lives and vessels.

flower potAt the time I was struggling with many things and I felt so convicted over his message. I had been broken for a long time and had not gone to God for my healing. The preacher went on to say that we could have broken marriages, lives, vessels, witnesses, homes whatever and that God would heal it. I felt so overwhelmed with the Holy Spirit telling me to go to the alter and ask for forgiveness and healing. I am glad that I did because I walked away feeling whole again. I walked away with hope and with a renewed heart and soul.

Sometimes we have to be broken to be made whole. God can make you whole. He can restore you and revive you. He will pick up your pieces and put you back together. It may be painful. The healing may be a process like the healing of a broken bone, but don’t give up!!! Keep praying, keep reading, keep trusting and keep the faith!

Whatever is broken in your life whether it be; your marriage, your heart, your life, your mind, your spirit, your witness, your finances, your body – come to Jesus and ask for a healing. If you’ve let sin slip into your life, come to Jesus. He will give you healing and forgiveness.

I always feel awkward writing a prayer but I need to do what is on my heart.

God,

I ask that you speak to the hearts of those who read this. I ask that you would provide healing in whatever aspect of life that it is needed. I ask you to give them a renewal of their hearts, souls and minds. I thank you for what you’ve done and what you will do. I ask that you flood each person’s life who reads this with your love. God we know you are exceeding and able to do all things and we know that you will. I ask that if someone is reading this and they used to be on fire for you that you would stir up their hearts and start a fire in them again. I ask you to give peace and comfort and joy to those who are without it. Lord we ask that if there is someone reading this who doesn’t know you, that they will come to know you. Use us Lord and let us be your vessels. I ask all these things in your name, Amen.

My hope for you is that you will come to the well that never goes dry and that you will get what you need.

Love from above,

Iva Mae

It Is Well

it-is-well-with-my-soul

So let go my soul and trust in Him. The waves and wind still know His name.

2 Kings 4:26 Run now, I pray thee, to meet her, and say unto her, Is it well with thee? is it well with thy husband? is it well with the child? And she answered, It is well.

I love the story in 2 Kings 4. My summary of the story in 2 Kings 4 is this:

Elisha the prophet went through the town of Shunam quite a bit. A Shunammite woman always offered bread to Elisha when he would pass by. He came that way so much that her and her husband made him a bed at their house for him to stay when he came by that way. The man and woman found favor in Elisha’s eyes. Elisha told them she would have a son within the year and she did just like he said. When he was older, he fell ill and died. The Shunammite woman laid him on Elisha’s bed in their house and got on a donkey to go to Elisha. Her husband asked why she was going to see Elisha and she answered IT IS WELL. When she got close, Elisha saw her and sent his servant to get her. Elisha’s servant asked if everything was okay she replied IT IS WELL. Even thought her little son had died, she said it is well. She fell before Elisha’s feet. He knew something was wrong and she was “vexed in her soul”. She asked him did she not desire a son and to not deceive her. Elisha knew something was wrong with her son so he and the woman traveled back to her house, where he saw the boy was dead. He prayed to God & the child came back to life.

What gets me about this story, is that the Shunammite woman continually said IT IS WELL. Her circumstances were horrible. She lost the son that God had given her, but she refused to let that bring her down. I’ve said it before but attitude can make such a HUGE difference in your life.

I think sometimes in life we focus so much on the circumstances. We become blinded by all the bad things, unhappiness and the negativity that we forget that God can help us. We take on a poor attitude and outlook (I’m so guilty of this). The Shunammite woman was heartbroken! Her son that she never expected to have had died. Loosing a child would be devastating. She knew the only way she would get through and the only way to get help was to go to the man of God.

My soul has been weary and unsettled. I just feel burnt out and exhausted. I have had a bad attitude and have been in a bad overall mood for a long time. I was praying this morning, God please help me in my time of unhappiness and heartache I can’t take this anymore! The song It Is Well With My Soul came to mind. I LOVE when God speaks to me like that. I started singing it to myself. Then I looked it up on YouTube because I couldn’t remember the words. I am horrible with remembering words to songs! I listened to the Hymn version and saw a video It Is Well by Kristene DiMarco & Bethel Music. I listened to it and was just overwhelmed with peace. I loved the line “So let go my soul and trust in Him. The waves and wind still know His name.” It just spoke to me. No matter how the storms may rage in my life God still has power over them! The winds and oceans have to obey God. He is in control and I can say IT IS WELL!

I have a hard time of letting go sometimes. I try to take things on myself. I am strong-willed and independent. I hate for anyone to do something for me, I’d rather just do it myself. I struggle a lot with letting go and letting God handle my circumstances. In the past few years I’ve learned more and more how to do this. I just feel like I’m burdening God with things that are silly or don’t matter. God cares about me and he cares about what I am going through. He loves us. He loves us so much, he gave his ONLY son to die on a cross for OUR sins. We just have to get over ourselves and surrender to him. Even though circumstances haven’t changed, I know God can change them. If he doesn’t, he will get me through! I know God hears my prayers! There is peace in that alone. Through it all I am going to say IT IS WELL!!

Below is a link to the YouTube version of It Is Well by Kristene DiMarco & Bethel Music as well as a link to It Is Well (Elisha’s Song) by the Isaacs

God bless!

Iva Mae

It Is Well by Kristene DiMarco & Bethel Music

https://youtu.be/YNqo4Un2uZI

It Is Well (Elisha’s Song) by The Isaacs

https://youtu.be/w87KlbHCZJw

Doubt

I hate doubting! When I doubt something it consumes me. I can’t get it off of my mind. It eats at me.

Sometimes our doubts are things that are good to doubt. For instance, doubting whether or not a stranger off the street will give a million dollars, that is something unlikely to happen. Other things, like if God can forgive us is not something you should doubt.

Satan is really good at bringing up past things that I’ve done and that I’ve already asked God for forgiveness for and that God has forgiven me for. Yesterday in my Pastor’s message, he mentioned that. He also said that God doesn’t remember them because he has already cast them as far as the east is to the west.

Psalms 103:11&12 “For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him. As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.”

Satan remembers our sins and we remember our sins. Satan loves to try to bring you down with things you’ve done in the past. He wants to do whatever he can to ruin you so you cannot be a vessel for God. He likes to poke at us a prod and mock us. He will bring up everything you’ve done. Sometimes out of the blue!! The other day, I randomly remembered when I was 2 and I walked by my Grandma’s room and saw $20 sticking out of her purse. I grabbed it and stuck it in my little cat purse. I really don’t think I knew it was wrong. I started dwelling on that. How ridiculous! Things like this and others Satan likes to throw in our minds so we get tripped up.

I did a study on doubt. What is it? What can it do? What does the bible say about this?

Doubt by definition is: to be uncertain about something: to believe that something may not be true or is unlikely; to have no confidence in someone of something; to lack confidence, to consider unlikely.

  • A synonym is, to question.

When we doubt, we start questioning. It makes sense. I started questioning God did you ever forgive me? I remember getting saved so yes he did but sometime the question still remains.

The Casting Crowns song, “East to West” is a perfect example!

I really like the first verse.

Here I am, Lord, and I’m drowning in your sea of forgetfulness. The chains of yesterday surround me. I yearn for peace and rest. I don’t want to end up where you found me and it echoes in my mind, keeps me awake tonight. I know you’ve cast my sin as far as the east is from the west. And I stand before you now as though I’ve never sinned. But today I feel like I’m just one mistake away from you leaving me this way.

I know that I am not the only one to have ever felt this way.

I realized that maybe at the root of me wondering is doubt. I’m lacking faith and I’m letting Satan get the best of me.

Isiah 41:13 “For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee.”

Romans 8:39 “Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

God’s word says that he will hold our hand and help us. It also says that nothing can separate us from the love of God.

 2 Corinthians 12:9 “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”

Jesus says His grace is sufficient for me!!! That is the answer. Yes he can forgive me and yes he has forgiven me of my past sins that I have already asked him forgiveness for!

I wrote this blog over a 2 day period. I am thankful that a friend on Facebook posted 2 Corinthians this morning. It spoke to my heart and overwhelmed me with God’s love. I love when God speaks to you through His word!! Thank God for people who have things put on their hearts to help others. You never know something you say or do may help someone else!!

Have you ever felt that way? What did you do to help you get over yourself?

Love from above,

Iva Mae