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The Beginning of Knowledge {Wise Words}

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Psalms 112:1
Fear the Lord

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.- Proverbs 1:7


In this age of information we can find knowledge by heaps. It's all over and most of the times for free! Yet wisdom is scarce. Wisdom means way more than knowledge. Wisdom is an essential attitude that affects every single area of life.


The basic foundation for learning is to fear God


The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.
Proverbs 9:10

What fearing God Means


The fear of God is an affectionate reverence for Him and humble submission to His word.

Fearing God is loving His commands and hating evil 

To fear the Lord is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech
Proverbs 8:13

Through love and faithfulness sin is atoned for;
through the fear of the Lord evil is avoided. 
Proverbs 16:6

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
all who follow his precepts have good understanding.
To him belongs eternal praise.
Psalms 111:10

Blessed are those who fear the Lord,
who find great delight in his commands.
Psalms 112:1 

Fearing God recognizes Him as the First Cause and Last End of all things

The Lord works out everything to its proper end—
even the wicked for a day of disaster.
Proverbs 16:4

“You are worthy, our Lord and God,
    to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
    and by your will they were created
    and have their being.”
Rev 4:11

It acknowledging  His forgiveness and seeking to please Him

If you, Lord, kept a record of sins,
    Lord, who could stand?
But with you there is forgiveness,
    so that we can, with reverence, serve you.
 Psalms 130:3-4

A God fearing person trembles humbly at His word 

Has not my hand made all these things,
    and so they came into being?”
declares the Lord.
“These are the ones I look on with favor:
    those who are humble and contrite in spirit,
    and who tremble at my word.
Is 66:2

 It is the whole duty of man

Now all has been heard;
    here is the conclusion of the matter:
Fear God and keep his commandments,
    for this is the duty of all mankind.
14 For God will bring every deed into judgment,
    including every hidden thing,
    whether it is good or evil.
 Eccl 12:13-14

On the other hand...


Fools reject wisdom and instruction, for they are proud and selfish without regard for God.

They love their own opinions (Pr 26:12). Rather than search for truth, fools simply want to promote their own thoughts (Pr 18:1-2). You cannot even start learning without the true fear of God.

 where can wisdom be found?
 where can wisdom be found?


Where does wisdom originate? 

In the fear of the Lord!

God opens men’s eyes, ears, and hearts to truth and wisdom (I Kgs 3:5-15; Jas 1:5). God opens their eyes to His word (Ps 119:18).

God shows them His secrets (Pr 3:32; Ps 25:14). They fear no man (Heb 13:6).

Wisdom cannot be found anywhere in the universe, but in the fear of God

But where can wisdom be found?
    Where does understanding dwell?
 No mortal comprehends its worth;
    it cannot be found in the land of the living.
 The deep says, “It is not in me”;
    the sea says, “It is not with me.”
 It cannot be bought with the finest gold,
    nor can its price be weighed out in silver.
 It cannot be bought with the gold of Ophir,
    with precious onyx or lapis lazuli.
 Neither gold nor crystal can compare with it,
    nor can it be had for jewels of gold.
 Coral and jasper are not worthy of mention;
    the price of wisdom is beyond rubies.
 The topaz of Cush cannot compare with it;
    it cannot be bought with pure gold.
 Where then does wisdom come from?
    Where does understanding dwell?
 It is hidden from the eyes of every living thing,
    concealed even from the birds in the sky.
 Destruction[a] and Death say,
    “Only a rumor of it has reached our ears.”
 God understands the way to it
    and he alone knows where it dwells,
 for he views the ends of the earth
    and sees everything under the heavens.
 When he established the force of the wind
    and measured out the waters,
 when he made a decree for the rain
    and a path for the thunderstorm,
 then he looked at wisdom and appraised it;
    he confirmed it and tested it.
 And he said to the human race,
    “The fear of the Lord—that is wisdom,
    and to shun evil is understanding.”
Job 28:12-28

All Verses taken from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® 

What to Do When You Feel Discouraged

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quote about discouragement
Quote: discouraged


Discouragement is no doubt a tool of the enemy to try to prevent us from making progress and from fulfilling our purpose. The meaning of the word “discourage” is “to deprive of confidence, hope, or spirit” (dictionary.com). 

Discouragement happens, even to the strongest and best of people. As This Blog post shares, we can either get discouraged with people around us, with life circumstances, with God and even with ourselves.

Job felt discouraged with his wife and friends. They didn’t get it. In the midst of his suffering and questioning God, they tried to be helpful, but they ended up heaping more shame and blame on Job for his afflictions. We, too, can feel let down by our friends and family. They don’t understand what we’re going through or don’t offer to help as we wish they would. Our disappointment can turn to discouragement. 

Elijah became discouraged with life’s circumstances. Despite our persistent and fervent prayers, things don’t turn out the way we’d hoped they would. Elijah hoped that after all the miracles the Israelites saw performed on Mount Carmel, Ahab and Jezebel would repent and put God first, but they did not. King Ahab and Jezebel were as stubborn and hard hearted as always, and Elijah felt discouraged, exhausted, and told himself that his entire ministry was a waste (1 Kings 19). 
Jeremiah felt angry and discouraged with God when he believed God was against him, and because of that perspective, he temporarily lost hope in God (Lamentations 3). The disciples too felt discouraged after Jesus was crucified, before he rose from the dead. They said, “We were hoping that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel” (Luke 24:21). They couldn’t see the bigger picture and felt disappointed that Jesus did not fight for his kingdom.
Peter felt discouraged with himself when he realized that he wasn’t as courageous as he thought he was. Jesus had warned him that he would deny him, but Peter’s pride kept him from seeing himself clearly (Matthew 26:31 and 74, 75). We too can feel discouraged and even depressed when we fail to live up to our own or someone else’s  expectations.


What to do when the feelings of discouragement come to our lives?

First and foremost: RUN to God’s word – refresh and refill your mind and spirit with the truth!

Psalm 31:24
Be Strong and Take Heart

1. PRAISE


Focus on God and worship God in the midst of what you are going through. You will be encouraged, and God will continually reveal Himself to you. 

Therefore the redeemed of the Lord shall return, and come with singing unto Zion; and everlasting joy shall be upon their head: they shall obtain gladness and joy; and sorrow and mourning shall flee away. 
Isaiah 51:11

Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.
Be careful for nothing: but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. 
Philippians 4:6-8

Though I walk in the midst of trouble, thou wilt revive me: thou shalt stretch forth thine hand against the wrath of mine enemies, and thy right hand shall save me. 
Psalm 138: 7

2. TRUST AND BELIEVE: HE'S FAITHFUL TO HIS PROMISES


Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. 
John 14:1

Peace, I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. 
John 14:27

We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;
 II Corinthians 4:8, 9

Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward. For ye have need of patience, that, after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise. Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: 
Philippians 1:6

3.- FOCUS ON SOMEONE ELSE: COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS AND BLESS SOMEONE ELSE TODAY!


And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. 
Galatians 6:9

Be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord. 
Psalms 31:24

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? the Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? When the wicked, even mine enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.
Though an host shall encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident. One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to enquire in his temple. For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavilion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me; he shall set me up upon a rock.
And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the Lord. Hear, O Lord, when I cry with my voice: have mercy also upon me, and answer me. When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, Lord, will I seek. Hide not thy face far from me; put not thy servant away in anger: thou hast been my help; leave me not, neither forsake me, 0 God of my salvation.
When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me up. Teach me thy way, a Lord, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies. Deliver me not over unto the will of mine enemies: for false witnesses are risen up against me, and such as breathe out cruelty: I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the Lord. 
Psalm 27:1-14

May you be encouraged as you read these  Bible Verses, May God Himself minister to you and fill you with His encouragement and peace, May you be unwavering in your trust in Him. May God bless you and continually encourage you, and May your life be an encouragement unto others – Amen


“Don’t be discouraged by life’s difficulties. With hope and determination, you can triumph over any difficulties.” 

― Lailah Gifty Akita, Pearls of Wisdom: Great mind

Eve: A pioneer- The first woman, wife and mother

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Genesis 2:18 
Then the Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper who is just right for him.” (NLT)

Genesis 2:23 
“At last!” the man exclaimed. 
“This one is bone from my bone, 
and flesh from my flesh! 
She will be called ‘woman,’ 
because she was taken from ‘man.’” (NLT)

God's grace at work
God's grace at work


Eve is known as the “Mother of All the Living”, what a significant accomplishment! But interesting enough, very little is known about her. She’s only referenced in the Bible in these scriptures:  Genesis 2:18-4:26; 2 Corinthians 11:3; 1 Timothy 2:13.-{Like most of us, mothers, our accomplishments might be “great” but they are for the most part, overlooked.} 

Eve was created in the most amazing environment a human being could ever be born into: Paradise, possessing every pleasure imaginable, and if this wasn’t good enough, when she came into the world, she was in perfect peace with her creator and her husband {the only person in the planet so far.}

Embarrassment, misunderstanding, hurt, estrangement, envy, bitterness, grief, or guilt or any other negative feeling where totally unknown for her until she listened to her enemy and began to doubt God.

Eve like every single “wo-man or Eve” in the world was created with purpose:

• Life-giver {that’s another variation for her name}.- to me this means not only being able to bear a child but to give life (light) to all people around her; e.g. husband, friends, etc.
•Adam’s companion and helper.
• Shares equal responsibility over the creation
• She was made in God’s image, as a result, she displays a portion of the characteristics of God: capable of reflecting HIS love, truth, strength, goodness, wisdom and beauty.
• With Eve, God brought human relationship, friendship and marriage into the world.


There are two remarkable things I want to treasure from Eve’s story:

1. As Eve, all women were created with a purpose. God knew YOUR purpose before the creation of the earth. Unfortunately, we tend to listen to “voices” and “lies” that distract us and make us fall. They make us divert from our destiny.

A voice whispering “you’re not good enough”, “you’ll never make it”, “you’re not clever enough”, and “you’re weak”, makes us fall, give up and abort our destiny!

Let us refuse to listen to this voice to convince us otherwise that what God has in store for us!.

2. Disobeying God’s commandments will bring consequences. In this case was the curse put on Eve {and the whole humankind} - “I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.” BUT embedded in that judgment was a beautiful promise “you will give birth to children”.

Romans 5:20-21
Grace


How beautiful and amazing is that God’s grace and mercy is so evident even while pronouncing judgment!

But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, so that, just as
sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness
to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Romans 5:20 – 21

A quote that I totally loved is:

 “When you are at your lowest, on your knees before God’s judgment, never forget that his grace is still at work. And that is truly amazing.”-Ann Spangler 

How can you relate to Eve?

Discerning God's Voice

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John 10:3-4
John 10:3-4


Long time ago I had the opportunity to read   listen to Lysa TerKeurst "What Happens When Women Say Yes to God" and the part where she talks about how to discern God's voice or how to know if God is truly speaking really made an impact and my life and since then it has helped me to be more aware of His voice. It has helped me to make better decisions.

Here I share my notes and reflections...Hope you're blessed today! :-)

Listen to my Voice...


God wants us to live in expectation of hearing from Him. Because He's our father...and He calls us friends.

Hearing God's voice doesn't mean to actually hear (audible) a voice (certain tone)...it's more like an impression or what we usually call "a feeling".

Everyday God speaks to us:


Sometimes He invites us to draw closer and listen as He reveals Himself, His Character and His Direction.
He calls us to participate in His purposes.
He whispers to reminds us how He loves us.

What a great joy this is!
Yet, it is unfortunate that still many believers are missings this vital element in their relationship with Him.

So,
How do I know if God is speaking to me?
How to I recognize that is His voice speaking and not my own ideas?
What if I feel God is asking me to do something does not make sense?

First of all...


There are no magic formulas BUT it will be close  impossible to recognize His voice if you don't really know Him. Think of how you can recognize the voice of your child in a playground full of children. 

The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. -John 10:3-4


John 10:27-28
John 10:27-28


My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of. John 10:27-28 


5 Key Questions to help you determine if what you hear is from God.


1- Does what I'm hearing line up with Scripture? (YOU MUST KNOW IT!)


God would not ask us something that contradicts His Word.

God's word is the language the Holy Spirit uses to help us to hear what God is speaking to our hearts.

Prepare and renew your mind:

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.- Romans 12:2

You don't have to make Scripture complicated! Just make sure you use an easy translation (one you enjoy reading)...and start simple...simply start! :-)

2.- Is it consistent with God's character?


What is what God's Spirit desire?

Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. Romans 8:5

Is it consistent with love, peace, etc? 
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. .- Galatians 5:22-23

3.- Is what I'm hearing being confirmed through messages I'm hearing at church or studies I'm having in my quiet times?


Here's the thing, meetings and services are not supposed to be for you to hear from God but more to confirm what you've been hearing. As mentioned above, you need to know (intimately) God in order to recognize His voice.

4.- Is it beyond me?


Have you ever felt God is asking you to do something beyond your ability (at least that's what you think) or natural human desire? to the point that you know it can only happen by God's intervention? That's exactly the point! God's wants to partner up with you!

Don't look at your inabilities and dwell in insecurities, instead, look at the almighty God!

God has called you, therefore He's equipped you!

5.- Would it please God?


Even if what you hear does not come from God but pleases Him...why not doing it?

Jesus is the one who provides a way to communicate with God.

The way God wants to connect with us is to provide direction for us in life.

He's gone before us and sees the dangers and trials we face.

He's telling us the way to go, perspectives to keep, anything to avoid.

He's speaking to us because we're His own!




For God so Loved...

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Unconditional Love
Unconditional Love


"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life"- John 3:16 NIV



God's Love= The Gospel

This verse summarizes the whole Gospel.

God's love is not static nor self-centered. 

Real love gives, reaches and touches people.

It reaches out and draws others in.

When you really love someone, you can't help it but giving yourself freely to even the point of self-sacrifice...and the great thing about it, is that it doesn't feel like a burden or sacrifice at all!

God showed His love for humankind, for His creation by giving the most precious and darling thing He could ever give. His Son. He paid the highest price He could pay.

Jesus paid the price and accepted the punishment for our iniquities and in exchanged He offers the new life He bought for us on the cross.

The best way to share the Gospel with others is to love like Jesus. Which means in most instances sacrificing our own comfort and security so other might join us in accepting God's love.


John 3:16
John 3:16

Our Prize = Eternal Life


Some people rather not believe in eternal life because their lives are miserable...and as a result they think eternal life is an extension of their terrenal lives.

But in reality, this terrenal life is just an introduction to eternity. In eternity there will be no death, sickness, enemy, evil or sin! What an amazing perspective!

The only thing we are required to do in order to receive this prize is to believe...faith! Only then life will make sense as we evaluate everything that happens from an eternal perspective! 

We'll know there's hope...that this is not the end. Life might not go as we wish...but this is not "the reality"...there's something much better awaiting for us!


Believing is not merely intellectual


To believe is more than accepting or agreeing with your intelligence that Jesus is God.

Many people agree that they believe there's a God, but beware...even demons and the devil himself believe in God. (acknowledge His existence) ( James 2:19)

Believing goes beyond that.

Believing is putting our trust and confidence in Him and in Him alone.
Believing is to understand that only He can save us.

Is to give Him control of our present and most importantly our future.
Is to believe that His words are true.

Let this promise of eternal life be yours..you just have to believe!






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