Psalm 91 – Relationship With God The Father

Photo: frank woutersPsalm 91… please handle carefully!

“He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God in Him I trust.”

Thought,… God is not having a bad day because you are not Praising Him. He is receiving all genuine Praise & Worship in abudence from all corners of the Earth at any one time.

Having relationship with God though is another matter and can only be established through faith in Christ Jesus.

Even though you are Praising God does’t mean you are in relationship with Him. In fact only very few are in relationship with Him. They think that God might be too busy to listen to our concerns; or too ‘Mighty’ to be granted an audience with; or He simply too angry at our sins !

“NO!” That is just not the case!

Now go back to Psalm 91 at the top of the page and begin reading it again, only this time use the ‘subjective’ language so that it now reads…

“I dwell in the Secret place of the Most High, I abide under the shadow of the Almighty. “I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, My God, In Him I will Trust.”

“Surely He shall deliver me from the snare of the fowler And from the perilous pestilence. He shall cover me with His feathers, And under His wings I shall “take refuge;”                        His truth shall be my shield and buckler; I shall not be afraid of the terror by night, Nor of the  arrow that flies by day, Nor for the pestilence that walks in darkness, Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.”

“A thousand shall fall at my side, And ten thousand at my right hand; But it shall not come near me. Only with my eyes shall I look and see the reward of the wicked.

“Because you have made the Lord, who is your refuge, Even the Most High, my dwelling place, no evil shall befall me, nor shall any plague come near my dwelling; For He shall give His angels charge over me, to keep me in all my ways. In their hand they shall bear me up, Lest I dash my foot against a stone.”

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Hidden with Christ.

The Key to Relationship with God.

images-2Many years ago I asked my Bank Manager if I could deposit a small collection of Gold Coins in to their Safe.

There was a small fee involved but well worth it compared to the cost of losing the collection.

I asked the man at the Bank how they hid treasured items, such as my small collection of coins. He began to reassure me that the coins would be perfectly safe in the care of the Bank, (not that I was in any way doubting him.) He continued to enlighten me as to how they store precious items in the Safe. Apparently what they do is to put the precious items into a locked drawer within the Safe – (be it jewelry, documents or whatever); which would itself be locked inside a drawer; all of which would be further protected in the bolted Safe.

Pretty safe I’d say! In fact just like your highly protected relationship with God the Father.

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Relationship with God

Fulness of Life

God did not leave Mankind Fatherless!

Just like you would not leave your own son or daughter without a father, neither would God.

In order, though, to have a relationship with God the Father we need to be completely without sin; which of course is impossible due to the effects of the ‘Fall and the Curse!

We have all sinned! God is Holy, and there is no sin in Him whatsoever.

In order to come into His presence we need to be without sin.

To rectify this situation God the Father provided a means by which, we, Mankind can be reconciled to God Himself.

What is required is the death of a Human Being as punishment for mans sin.

Not just any Human Being, but a Human without sin!

And God sent His ownly sin-less Son to become sin for us.

His name is Jesus, who willingly went to the Alter of Sacfifice, the Cross, to die for us on our behalf.

images-1On that Alter, all of Man’s sin came upon Him and He died, so that anyone who makes Him their Lord and Savour are forgiven by God and are welcomed into His presence.

This is how Relationship with God is restored.

 

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At last, The Secret to Eden is Revealed

Return to The Garden of Eden

Return to The Garden of Eden

Returning to Eden is a return to relationship with God the Father in the heart. It is to walk with Him and talk with Him – just like Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. It is to know Him and fellowship with Him in the cool of the Garden. It is about deep and profound prayer.

Through Jesus we are now able to come right into God the Father’s  presence, just as it was in the Garden of Eden; to see Him as He is and to rest in His love.

Christianity is not a Religion of ‘works’ to try appease a harsh and distant God. No! It is about becoming as a child and running into the His arms, just like Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden.

He is incredibly forgiving and accepting and is not expecting perfection nor piety – simply a realistic and open Father and Son/Daughter relationship.

But how do we get so close to Him and not fear being ‘fried’ in His presence?

The first thing we must do is not be put off by an old image of a harsh and judging God. He relates to us differently now because of the sacrificial offering of His Son, Jesus – who alone died for the forgiveness of sins. Yes, God is Holy, Righteous and all-powerful but His anger against sin is now paid for at the Cross of Calvary.

We now come to Him by grace through faith in Christ Jesus.

One way of entering into His presence is through Journaling. It is a process of quieting our minds; focussing on Jesus; thanking Him; praising Him and waiting on Him.

A picture or thought might come to mind; then write it down. You may simply write a question and wait, with expectation, to hear His reply. Meanwhile, have your pen ready to write what you feel He is saying and to comment if anything comes to mind. A scriptural verse may come to mind, then write it down.

Ask another question and return to the flow of His presence. Within minutes you may well have a conversation going; or at  least a very clear connection with the Father.

Write about what you are concerned about or joyful about, excited about. He is a loving Father who wants only to reveal His heart to His children. Don’t let the enemy of your soul rob you of this precious moment with the Father. And if He says anything specific about a difficult situation in your life, do pray about it and share it with wise Counsellors for their mature wisdom.

What follows is a short Journaling time I had with the Lord.

“There is a broken bough in a wooded area that makes a perfect resting place. I sit there some mornings gathering my energy for the walk back up the hill towards home. It is my imaginary ‘Garden of Eden’ – a beautiful plateau on the south side of Bath where I live.

One morning I sat there with an old penknife I’d found from my childhood. Strewn all around were dried branches and twigs, and feeling the Lords prompting, I selected a twig so that I might fashion it into an arrow.

The phrase ‘Whittling Stick’ came to mind as I sliced away dried flakes of bark from the twig:

“Whittle away the old dry wood. Make it straight and narrow with a good sharp point”, spoke the Lord to my heart, as though reciting the words of a song.

I repeated the words as I cut away all the bark and smoothed the twig to a long sharp point. Rolling it between my fingers for balance, I then looked down the stem towards an imaginary target in the distance. Yes, it truly was a fine stick, and could well be used as an arrow.

Pleased with my efforts, I asked the Lord what he thought about my stick. His reply came softly to my heart.

“Now you can see what I’m doing with my people”, he began, “I’m fashioning them in My love so that they might serve Me more effectively… I’m removing the dead wood outer layers of self-reliance and I’m straightening the kinks and bumps of sin. I’m smoothing the rough edges of personality problems, and finally, I’m bringing them to a good sharp point so that when I do aim them at My target, they won’t miss! And yes, like you, I am also well pleased with My efforts”.

Scripture Reading:

“He turneth the wilderness into a standing water, and dry ground into water springs. And there he maketh the hungry to dwell, that they may prepare a city for habitation; And sow the fields, and plant vineyards, which may yield fruits of increase. He blesseth them also, so that they are multiplied greatly; and suffereth not their cattle to decrease”.Psalm 107: 35 – 38

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Journaling your Christian Life

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“Talking with God, The Word” By Peter j Foster

You’re either a fan of journaling, or not.

If not, let me try convert you to the benefits of this growing Art of communication with God.

First of all, please be assured this is not about ‘automatic handwriting’, the sort practised by New Ager’s. This is for Born Again, Spirit-filled Believers who desire to talk to God and to hear God speaking to them – to develop their relationship with Father God and continue to seek Him.

I guess you could say that Journaling would help if you enjoy writing; but this is not necessary true. I kept a journal for many years before I became a Christian. I found it remarkably therapeutic in committing my thoughts, plans, ideas and concerns to paper. I love writing, but this is not about writing per se. It is about developing a relationship with Father God

So here goes with your first step in relating with God through Journaling.

1. Get yourself a handy writing pad; not too small, you’ll be surprised how quickly you’ll fill it.

2. Find a convenient time of day to journal and a favourite place to spend time with God. (Actually it can be anywhere; cafe’s are my favourite place!)

3. Settle your mind. Pray. Welcome His presence. Perhaps read the Bible and meditate on His love for you.

4. Begin writing.

Begin writing what? You may ask.

Well, you could begin by asking God about something that concerns you. Write it all down. Get it off your chest. Detail it. Express any confusion, hurts, fears or whatever. And now wait to see what comes to mind, then write it down! Write it as it comes to you. Don’t worry about grammar, accuracy or scriptural relevance at this stage. You can always test it later with the Word of God and trusted friends/partner. The important thing is to get into the flow of writing, without feeling anyone looking over your shoulder!

You could begin with writing about how you feel. What’s troubling you, exciting you or challenging you. Just allow yourself to write freely. Let it all out. Hold nothing back. After all, no one is going to know about it except you and God. (Unless you lose your Journal, so guard it with your life!)

As an example, I often write my plans and ideas for ministry, outreach, business, relationships and finances. It really helps to get my thoughts out of my head and on to paper. Sometimes simply reading it back begins to inspire (from God) my thoughts, solutions, creative ideas. In response be ready to write down quickly what is coming to mind. It is so easy to forget what God is saying. – if you do not commit it quickly to paper.

There’s no need to analyse it at this stage what you have written. Just enjoy the spontaneity of writing from your mind and from your heart. And believe that God is right there with you – listening, reading your words and beginning to release solutions, answers to questions and encouraging remarks. He’s your Heavenly Father and desires that you flow in your relationship with Him.

In the Bible we read in John 10:27 that: “My sheep hear my voice…” That’s us! We hear God’s voice speaking to us. Yes, primarily God speaks to us through Scripture – but also spontaneously where the Lord wants us to apply Scripture to a particular life situation. His Word is tailored, as it were, to each of our circumstances. Which is why of course we must never assume a relationship with God outside of regular reading of the Bible.

In a ‘nutshell’, Spiritual Journaling is about what God is saying to you through your prayers, questions and understanding. The journaling process will sustain you in times of hardship, inspire creative solutions to problems and bring clarity and focus to what God is saying and doing in your life.

The writer Henri Nouwen wrote: “To my surprise, I never lost the ability to write. In fact, writing became part of my struggle for survival. It gave me the little distance from myself that I needed to keep from drowning in my despair.” (From the Book: Inner voice of Love.)

If you would like to be coached in Spiritual Journaling with God,’ please contact me by e-mail and we can schedule a Free and without obligation ‘Introduction to Spiritual Coaching.  lease email me mail@peterjfoster.co.uk

I can do all things

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

This well known verse from Phiippeans verse 4:13 is a great encouragement for many of us.

The word “Do” is often seen to be an invitation to execute our own strength and determination to achieve ‘good things’ in our lives.

It actually refers to our willingness to allow Christ’s power to sustain us in difficulties and challenges. It also refers to Christ’s power within us to enjoy, to the full, the good success and abundance that does come our way.

I have found there is a battle going on in my soul at this time. Even as a Christian, after many years, I still find my self attempting to sort things out in my own strength.

With the economy in difficulty, jobs being lost, cut-backs here, cut-backs there, it is a challenging time for us all.

One response I’ve noticed is to get tough with the Devil! To stomp around declaring faith-filled scriptures,; praying fervently: rebuking this, rebuking that and generally getting into a right tizz about it!

But, behind all that spiritual bravardo there whispers a still small voice that says: “Seek first the kingdom or God and His righteousness, and all thee things shall be added to you.” (Matthew 6:33)

It is primarily a time of developing a closer relationship with God the Father. It is a time of standing still and seeing the salvation of the Lord God who is with us.

It is a time of believing His Word in love – and not in desperation (fear!)

What the Lord wants is for us to know that we have His promises first on the inside; and then, from out of the abundance of our hearts we speak His life on the outside.

In other words, it’s an ‘inside out’ job.

So here’s some scripture’s to help get us started on your inside-out breakthrough…

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” (Phi 4:13)

“I am strenghened with might through His Spirit in the inner man,…” Eph 3:16

“You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, who is with you.” 2 Chron. 20:17

“Not by might or by power, but my My Spirit,” Zech 4:6

“…for the battle is the Lord’s,.. 1 Sam 17:47

What do you think? I’d love to have your comments.