Find The Blessing- Give It Value

“It is God’s blessings that make man rich.”

Proverbs 10:22

At first I wasn’t sure why the Lord was moving me to post this blog.  This is not what I had in mind when I sat down to type this out. I was going to do a blog about something TOTALLY different.  But I realized, this is now the month of November. Thanksgiving is celebrated in November, so now I understand. As this title of this blog suggests – EVERYTHING has VALUE.  That is something we fail to consider most of the time.  We take so much for granted.  The water we drink; the car we drive; the clothes we wear; the food we eat; the air that we breathe; our health; even our own personal lives!!  We have forgotten to take stock in the blessings we are given!  We constantly complain about what we DON’T have or things that aren’t “working out the way WE want them to go.  But now is the time to begin to take inventory.  Start looking at what you DO have or the things that took a “positive turn” and grow from there.  I believe you will be surprised and find you are on top of the game and lacking little to nothing.

Something that I have found throughout my life is that sometimes the blessings that we obtain are not so obvious. When the Lord used Moses to release the Hebrew people out from under the rule of Pharaoh, God sent them on a road that was less traveled.  God knew that if He sent them on the shortest and quickest route, they would encounter an opposing tribe and army.  That meant they would have to go to battle.  Some of the Hebrew people would have gotten discouraged and wanted to go back to Egypt.  That is not what God wanted for them, so He sent them on a longer route, but there would be no battle.  That was a blessing to the Hebrew people!

During the holocaust, a Christian Netherland woman named Corrie ten Boom, along with her parents and siblings, were arrested by the German Nazi Gestapo for harboring Jewish people in their home and taking part in an underground railroad.  This woman was quite accomplished in her own right, at the time of her arrest.  She was the first female watchmaker to ever be licensed in the Netherlands; she taught a Bible class to teenage girls; she was also a teacher to the children who were mentally challenged.  None of this seemed to matter when she was held in the concentration camps for her crime.  In her book, The Hiding Place, she wrote that she was grateful for the lice in her hair.  While we may cringe at the thought, we wonder why she would be grateful for something so creepy.  The German soldiers had a disdain & phobia for the little critters crawling around and wanted nothing to do with them.  So, while they had tendencies to beat, rape and accost the women prisoners, they would pass on the ones who were afflicted with lice.  To most people, having lice would be a great grievance, but to the ten Boom women this was a great blessing!

My husband and I had been given possession of a church building in the final years of the 20th century.  We used that building to begin having a church.  Just shy of the 20 year mark the city was approached by a group of people who claimed they could and would refurbish that building within 6 months, but the catch was they wanted possession of the building.  So, long story short, the city, under new council, sold the building out from underneath us.  At first we were stammered.  But once we were out, we knew the Lord had more work for us to do.  We no longer had a church but our ministry began to take off.  I wrote a book – The Secret Weapons HIdden In God’s Light  – which is very successful; we are going into other places we had not thought of going into previously; we are on the internet; we are able to travel more; I am in the middle of writing another book; we are reaching and ministering to more people now than when we had the church!  At first, the incident did not feel like a blessing.  We initially did not see it, but HALLELUJAH!  It is an INCREDIBLE blessing!!

Look, I am sure if the Hebrew people wanted to, they could have started GRUMBLING about having to go the long way around, they could have, but they didn’t have to go to battle.  Corrie ten Boom could have grumbled about being in the concentration camp and having lice in her hair, but she was grateful for them because they were a blessing.  We could have grumbled about the church being jerked out of our hands, but we knew God wasn’t done with us.  We just had to wait and see what He had in store for us once we no longer had to pay for the overhead and upkeep of the building.  That was a REAL blessing!

 

Hope you have an abundant and happy harvest season!!

Until next time . . .

Many Blessings to You from

Vessels Of Light Ministries

Be Thankful

 

 

 

 

 

 

Actions Speak Volumes

O sons of men, how long will my honor and glory be [turned into] shame? How long will you [my enemies] love worthless (vain, futile) things and seek deception and lies? Selah.

Psalm 4:2

How many times in your life have you heard someone call out God’s name when they were not praying, and you or heard someone else tell that person not to take God’s name in vain?  Or maybe YOU are the one that constantly calls out God’s name and are told that you are guilty of “taking the LORD’s name in vain.”  For the longest time, I could not figure out why the LORD would be mad at the fact that someone would call out HIS name, and consider it a sin!?!?!  This just did not make sense to me!  Even now, it is becoming an aggravation knowing that people would instill this misconception in the mind of many, only because they do not understand what the concept of what “taking the Lord’s name in vain” truly entails.

When reading Proverbs 30:7-9, the author tells God that he only has one request  for he Lord.  The request is that the LORD doesn’t allow him to be too rich to the point that the man doesn’t rely on God.  The second part of the request was not to let the author to be too poor, that he should have to steal to eat, and TAKE THE LORD’s NAME IN VAIN.

What was that???!!??  Did we see that right?  If so, that means that if we are doing things that do not line up with what the Word of God instructs us to do and call ourselves Christians, or children of God, then we are taking the Lord’s name in vain!  I know of several Christian people who are employed in construction and labor jobs, who tell me they would much rather work for NON-Christians than they would Christians.  Why?  Because the Christians do not want to pay for the labor that has been done for them so they either pick the laborers work apart to where they pay hardly anything; or they claim the work was not what they wanted and refuse to pay for it.  I have known of some to agree to the terms of the work contract, then after the work is done, they tell the person, the LORD wants them to BLESS them so they will not have to pay for it!!  REALLY??

There are other things that some people do while CLAIMING to be Christians.  Things that are ABSOLUTELY not pleasing to the Lord.  I have seen Christian brothers and sisters are backstabbing each other.  We have had people come to our church claiming they want to be in the Lord’s service and clean the church.  When we come in the following Sunday, we find that these people who have gained our trust by coming to the church for a while, instead of cleaning up the church, they cleaned the church out!!  Toilet paper, money, food from the pantry, kitchen utensils and many other items were missing.  Calling themselves Christians who are not living a godly lifestyle is an INSULT to the Lord, because that is definitely NOT how God would want us to conduct ourselves.  So, just to be clear, this is TAKING THE LORD’S NAME IN VAIN.  The actions of someone calling themselves a Christian SPEAKS VOLUMES!

Until next time . . . Be blessed!

Cindy Simpson-Hembree

 

Proverb 30.7-9

 

 

 

 

 

The Fog Has Lifted

                        To  start  being wise  you  must  first  get  wisdom.                     No   matter  what  it  costs, get understanding.

Proverbs 4:7

 

I must apologize for my extended hiatus that I have taken.  It was unexpected, and it came in like a tidal wave.  Actually, more like a tsunami.  One incident happened, and the recovery did not go as well as expected.  Then a couple of mishaps trampled in without warning.  These were soon followed be a horrendous tragedy in our area that took an incredible toll on the entire population.  Then, there were a couple more unpleasant events that happened to us personally.  All of these things were just combined with the frustration of the lack of recuperation of the first event.  It has just been one struggle after another.   So within the confines of the rubble, I kind of lost my sense of direction.  And my focus got really fuzzy.  And I allowed my peace to slip away from me for a minute.

I was allowing all these things to come down on me like horrendous waves constantly crashing in and relentlessly chiseling away at my foundation!  Soon I found myself mourning for all the things I was losing and not being grateful for everything I had left.  This was posing a BIG problem in my everyday life.  I was alienating myself from all of my friends and family.   And slowly, I found myself being pulled into a very dark place!  I finally realized I was drifting down a stream that was taking me to a place I did NOT want to go.  I knew the devil was behind all of this “stinking thinking,” and I knew I had to turn the boat around and paddle against the current.

I may not have known why all these things were happening, but I did know that God says in His Word that if we keep our focus on Him, He will keep us in “PERFECT PEACE” (Isaiah 26:3).  And when we ask for wisdom, He will give it to us (James 1:5).  I have a really close relationship with my Father in Heaven, and I had been talking to Him about all my woes!  He was listening and I knew He was holding me close, and many people who loved me were praying for me.  What I was NOT doing was FIGHTING the train of thought.  Finally, I pulled the emergency brake cord, jumped off and began moving in the opposite direction!  That is when I saw the light that the devil had been using all of these things to drain me of the joy I could only find in the LORD!  I made a decision that I am not going to let the devil have one more day, one more hour, one more minute. . . not even a second longer.  I belong to the LORD, and in His presence is FULLNESS of JOY!  (Psalm 16:11)  That is where I am staying.

Good Lord Willing, I will posting another blog soon!!

Until then, Be Blessed.

 

Psalm 118.24-5

 

Are You Counting The Blessings Of Others?

                                        “A faithful man will abound with blessings,SELRES_01ff8e8e-c0ee-488d-af4f-1a94f1740e77SELRES_429ea1c6-7059-461e-a54a-e3133f156961SELRES_678ae898-f4e5-44aa-a445-9f2d21ae76a3,                               BSELRES_678ae898-f4e5-44aa-a445-9f2d21ae76a3SELRES_429ea1c6-7059-461e-a54a-e3133f156961SELRES_01ff8e8e-c0ee-488d-af4f-1a94f1740e77ut he who makes haste to be rich will not go unpunished.”

Proverbs 28:20

Lately, our finances have not met the usual expectations.  The tithing has been extremely low because the summer calls for people to use their money for their vacations.  Or they have family gatherings, that means they are not attending our weekly meetings.   Yet the demands of the ministry the last couple of years have been stronger than ever!  As a matter of fact, there has been such a drain on the finances that they are nearly depleted.  This is none of your affair or problem, and this is NOT a plea for anyone to send any funding to us.  I do not want anyone to get the wrong idea.  I just want to share the thought process of a pastor when things get so uncomfortably lean.

We are an extremely small ministry.  People call us all the time needing their groceries, diapers, gasoline for their vehicles, places to spend the night while in transition, or their utility bills paid.  When we saw our funds dwindling, we knew God was going to bring in the finances to replenish them, it was only going to be a matter of time.  From time to time we get a little bit of a boost, but it is not nearly what “we consider” is enough.  However, the Lord seems to meet our bills EVERY month, so He continues to prove He is faithful.  We just aren’t having the luxury of having any extra.  So our thoughts go from one extreme to the other.  It first starts out very optimistic.  Then, we start to think that maybe we are not doing God’s will and He is punishing us.  When we check our hearts and spirits and we get a smile from our Heavenly Father, we know we are doing EXACTLY what the Lord is calling us to do.  Then we get caught up in our flesh.  We begin to compare our financial situation to how the other ministries in the area APPEAR to be faring.

When we look at some of the other ministries in the area, they are building new additions on their churches; a couple of them are buying new jets; others have new vehicles and moving into new homes.  We are working just as hard if not harder and yet it just doesn’t seem fair!  Then it hits us that we have fallen into the trap of the devil.  We begin to covet things that our “neighbors” have attained.  It is at this time we begin to come to our senses.  We realize what we are doing is a sin (Deut. 5:21), and we repent.  We take the vain imaginations captive and we reel in our faith.  We remind ourselves the Lord has ALWAYS provided for us and we are lacking NOTHING!  Then, we start taking inventory of our blessings which FAR OUT WEIGH the things we consider to be our sorrows.  This, immediately, carries the fear and feeling of lack right out of our minds.  We start praising the Lord and fill our hearts with gratefulness.

It never benefits us to compare ourselves to others.  Being envious of people around us will trap us in the snare of the devil EVERY single time!  So please beware of the anguish this can cause.  The Lord brings and blesses us with joy, don’t let the enemy steal it with a covetous spirit.  Counting your own blessings and not those of others will keep us on the righteous path and in a state of contentment.  If we keep our focus on the Lord, He will keep us in perfect peace (Isaiah 26:3).  When we do this, we find that we have TREASURES untold, treasures that are PRICELESS!  Treasures the world will NEVER be able to attain.  Be content with what the Lord has given us and know that the Lord will NEVER leave you (Hebrews 13:5).

Be Blessed,

Cindy Simpson~Hembree

gold beaded necklaces on gold jewelry box
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Do You Resist Sharing God’s Love?

“Pay everything you owe. But you can never pay back all the love you owe one another. Whoever loves other people has done everything the law requires.”

Romans 13:8

Something doesn’t seem right about the recent events that have been going on in the media and our government leaders.  Personally, I feel like we all need to take a step back and look at what is really going on here.  I know that many of us call ourselves Christians.  I have Christian brothers and sisters of ALL ethnicities. Red, brown, yellow, black and white – we are ALL precious in God’s eyes.  Does it matter where we come from?  Mexico, Italy, Pakistan, Columbia, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Canada, Ireland, France, Russia, Congo, South Africa, Australia, Bermuda, Jamaica, Scotland, or any place else on the globe that you would like to pin – does it matter where they are from before you show some compassion and love toward a person?  If a person is a liberal, a Democrat, a Republican, a socialist, or an independent, does it matter how you treat them?  If it does, it should not.  You see, because we are Christians, we should be happy and vibrant in our desire to want to SHOW and SHARE the love of Christ.

In 1 John 4:20 it says that if we SAY that we LOVE God but HATE our brothers, we are LIARS!  I have to take note to this and realize I have heard many people tell me how much they love the Lord, but then spew out HORRIBLE things toward one person who I know professes to be Christian, or a mass of people of one race or another, who also have history of being children of God.  You see, we have to be extremely careful, because 2 Peter 3:9 says that God has patience so that anyone can turn away from their wrong doing and follow Him.  God loves us all.  Look at Jonah, God sent him to Nineveh.  Those people were so awful, Jonah tried to get on a boat going the other direction.  Jonah was mad, he did not like those people and definitely did not want them to become one of his “brothers and sisters”, but God has His way. It’s the same way things are now.  We never know who God is going to have us encounter and lead them to the Lord.  Or maybe even bring us up short when we find out the person we are dead set against is really a devoted God-fearing person.  That happened to me several years ago.

There is another aspect we have to look at in our lives.  Many times we are looking at someone in a higher position at work or in the government.  We have the habit of sitting in our easy chairs at home in our living rooms and criticizing all the decisions that are made.  We pick these people apart if they are from a different political party or organization that we are in disagreement with the policies.  I have been just as guilty as anyone in the past when it comes to trash talking our political leaders.  Then one day, one political leader was killed in a plane wreck.  My heart went out to the family and then I realized he had a family just like I did.  I was no better than he was.  The man just had different ideas than I did.  He deserved no disrespect.  Romans 13:2 says that those who oppose their government, opposes what God has established.  We need to pray for our government officials.  I know that it is hard to do when you don’t agree with or share the same ideals as they do, but this is something that should be REQUIRED from us, AS CHRISTIANS!!  Because we are to LOVE our enemies and PRAY for our enemies, thus saith the LORD!  (Matthew 5:43-48)  These leaders should not be exempt from us showing and sharing God’s love toward them.

I am hoping and praying this little blog will have a BIG impact on all who read it.  I do love you all, but more than anything – God loves us ALL so much more – no matter who we are or what we do.

Be Blessed,

Cindy Simpson~Hembree

Whoever lives in God Continue reading “Do You Resist Sharing God’s Love?”

Stand Tall and Firm In The Shadow of Your Past

Who is he that condemns you? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us.

Romans 8:34

Do you stand accused of something you did before you accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior?  I someone constantly bringing your past up to you, even though you had asked them to forgive you?  Do they continually holding the offense that you did over your head with venom in their accusations?  Or maybe we should look at the other side of the coin.  There are many of us, than even though we are forgiven from the Lord and/or others, we cannot forgive ourselves.  Therefore, we are forever holding ourselves over a barrel and suspended in a cloud of guilt.  We can’t ever seem to stop thinking about the horrible things that we have done in the past.  It could be as simple as taking part of a high school prank that hurt someone’s feelings; or harsher offenses such as a lie that cost someone their job; or maybe some kind of accident that maimed someone severely.  Whatever or whoever that may be that persistently holds those transgressions is not working in the light of the Lord.

When you accepted Jesus and began your life in Christ, the scriptures are clear that you are a NEW creation.  (2 Corinthians 5:17-19)  And Romans 8:1-2 says that we who are in Christ are no longer subjected to condemnation.  We are made FREE from sin and eternal death.  Sin has dominion over us no more. (Romans 6:14)  So it is time that when we are faced with someone who is constantly reminding us of the terrible things that we did from our life before Christ; or even if you did something AFTER you found Christ and REPENTED for it, then we need to tell them we are forgiven and they have to let go of their anger and spite.  However, if it is the memories of our own that keep plaguing and tormenting us, we must learn to forgive ourselves.  It says in Ephesians 4:30 that we are not to grieve the Holy Spirit because we are SEALED into God’s grace until we are taken into God’s kingdom.  Hallelujah!  Don’t allow your flesh or the devil to keep lying to you by telling you that you are GUILTY of acts you have done in the past.  Once you repent for something, you are forgiven by God.  Whom the Son sets free is free, indeed.  (John 8:36)  The Lord is THE FINAL authority.  Period.

Be Blessed,

Cindy Simpson~Hembree

Power In the Name Of Jesus

Are You Wearing The Appropriate Attire – Part 5

“For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace.

1 Corinthians 14:33

So we are at the final entry of the “Armor Of God” which is the Sword of the Spirit.  This is the one item that is probably the most difficult to figure out.  In order to use this part of the armor, one must be educated on how to utilize it.  You see, how can a person learn how to wield it if they have never been taught how to fence?  We may have to spend a little more time to study and learn how to use it, but after we grasp its ability, it becomes more intriguing.  Remember, the Sword of the Spirit is the Word of God.  Within in its pages lies a treasure trove of information, wisdom and knowledge.  When we open the treasure chest, we recall that knowledge is POWER!  John Paul Getty once told his son, “Power is a strange thing.  When you get a little of it, you want A LOT of it.  When you get a lot of it, you want ALL of it.”  When we read God’s Word and find out that all of life’s answers are held in your hand, and the authority we are given, as Christians, your empowerment is  overwhelming!

Let me just give you some examples of what I am talking about:  If we have questions about things that happen in our life, all we have to do is ask the Lord about it, He will direct us to the right scriptures.  Case in point – I could not figure out why so many of my brothers and sisters in Christ had been overcome with sickness and diseases and were passing away.  I soon found the answer was written in 1 Corinthians 11:27-32, this surprised me.  Another time I was really concerned about the growing reports of mosquitoes coming into the area carrying the West Nile Virus.  I told the Lord I knew how to fight demons and people, but how do I fight off insects.  In Psalm 91:4-7, the Lord showed me that I didn’t have to, He will take care of that problem.  When my husband and I first began in the ministry there was an individual who tried to destroy our good name.  When I prayed about it, I was quickly directed to the scripture of Isaiah 54:17, and was comforted by the Holy Spirit.  Finally, I was not raised in a loving home, so when I needed a blessing from my father, my heavenly FATHER stepped in through Deuteronomy 28 and gave me a blessing.   I could go on and on, but I think you are getting the picture.  The Sword of the Spirit is a special piece of the armor, indeed.  It pays off to learn how to use it.

Be Blessed,

Cindy Simpson~Hembree

ancient antique armor armour
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