Dish of Dirt, Anyone?

Dirt 1“When my daughter was a toddler, I used to take her to a park not far from our apartment. One day as she was playing in a sandbox, an ice-cream salesman approached us. I purchased her a treat, and when I turned to give it to her, I saw her mouth was full of sand. Where I had intended to put a delicacy, she had put dirt.

Did I love her with dirt in her mouth? Absolutely. Was she any less of my daughter with dirt in her mouth? Of course not. Was I going to allow her to keep the dirt in her mouth? No way. I loved her right where she was, but I refused to leave her there. I carried her over to the water fountain and washed out her mouth. Why? Because I love her.

God does the same for us. He holds us over the fountain. “Spit out the dirt, honey,” our Father urges. “I’ve got something better for you.” And so he cleanses us of filth; immorality, dishonesty, prejudice, bitterness, greed. We don’t enjoy the cleansing; sometimes we even opt for the dirt over the ice cream. “I can eat dirt if I want to!” we pout and proclaim. Which is true—we can. But if we do, the loss is ours. God has a better offer.”

MAX LUCADO QUOTE

(Excerpt from Max Lucado’s Book: ‘Just Like Jesus’)

GOD BRINGS HIS CHILDREN TO BROAD PLACES

“GOD BRINGS HIS CHILDREN TO BROAD PLACES!”

-Teresa Allissa Citro-

Zechariah 13.9

“God brings his children to broad places.”

What are broad places? “Swedenborg tell us that in terms of measurement, height relates to the desire for good and breadth relates to the knowledge of the truth. Following that, something that is “broad” has a great capacity for truth, and a ‘broad place’ or ‘broad land’ is one where a large amount of truth can be learned and understood, one where a mind can expand.”

Swedenborg is right on! It should be no surprise to us then to understand and clearly comprehend God’s desire is to bring us and lead us to all truth. God, who created our innermost parts, knows the capacity of our mind, heart, and being. He constantly wants to reveal His truth in our lives.

We cannot follow a God we don’t know. Imagine marrying someone you don’t know nor care to know. Just so you are married. How many marriages are like that? Sad to say too many. How many times have we heard, “I didn’t know this about this person?”

We can know there is a God, but we don’t know this God we worship.  Many people go to a place of worship, but they don’t know who this God they worship truly is. It’s all about traditions, and rituals and they are fearful if they don’t meet these expectations God will not bless them. God is not about traditions and rituals. He is all about truth and sin. He’s a relational God.

God wants us to know Him. He wants us to understand who He is and what He’s capable of doing in our lives. He wants to expand your places. To bring you into broad places of understanding and living a blessed life. We cannot expect to live a life of blessings without obeying His laws, and they are not many. Ten Commandments to follow. Is it really that hard to follow? Even heathens don’t like to be cheated, lied to, and murdered. Let’s get real. Who here wants people to use them, hurt them, steal from them, or lie to them? Can we at least agree up to here? Mostly, who wants their spouse to cheat on them? I venture to say, at the very least, no man or woman wants their spouse to cheat on them.

Too often people perceive the blessed life to be a trial free, no pain, no hurts, no temptations life. This is not true. We paint a picture of God as Santa Claus and then find our expectations are crushed when something bad happens in our lives. God promises over and over He will be with His people in their troubles and promises them to deliver them from all trouble. In the worst of trials, He is there. He uses the bad and the ugly, and He turns our mourning into joy.

Yes, God blesses, and God still allows things to happen to good people. It’s called the sovereignty of the All-knowing, all-seeing God. He is the Healer and Restorer, and He upholds us with His righteous hand. We are safe in His hands no matter what.

This is why God brings His children to “broad places.” Places of understanding, great places of understanding and truths are learned also in the hardest and most testing trials of our lives, expanding our minds to truths we wouldn’t have known without the trials, allowing the fire to purify and cleanse our soul. Pure gold is what he’s after.

God reveals the truth to those who truly follow him. He increases their paths, plans, and blesses them regardless of joy, sorrow, pain, no pain. Every breathing moment is a moment of greatness in the eyes of God.

Something to ponder today: Do we know God as we should know Him? If you’re married or plan on marrying do you want a spouse you can rely on? Loves you unconditionally, wants to build a life with you? God is the same way. He desires to love you, help you, and bless you. Even vows we say, “In sickness in health until death do us part.” Imagine a God the vows more than just in sickness. He goes beyond death! For those who love Him and give themselves to Him, He will bring them into Heaven when their days are over on Earth.

Ask God to show you the broad places he wants to bring you too, places of truth, vision, and greatness -places where only God shines and you diminish, places of revelations and expansions of mind, heart, and soul.

Yes, Folks, this is the God I serve. The reason I share so much on Facebook of what he has done for my family and me. He’s the God who has led me to broad places, and those places were to understand who He is, truths about His love, faithfulness, and greatness to fully understand His expansion of what He created for me to do on this earth. They were purposes I didn’t even understand myself. Until I fully gave my everything to Him -my heart, mind, soul, and life to Him. He wants to do the same for you. Don’t miss out on knowing your broad places in life. It’s not all a bowl of cherries and cream but an adventurous, exhilarating, amazing, unpredictable, passionate, filled with surprises, and at times supernatural kind of life. I love my life, and it’s not pain or trial free. It’s a life lived with evidence in who God is and what He’s done in the midst of the trials. I’ll say it again.  I love my life because it is filled with God moments of victories and miracles.

I pray you find this God I speak about for yourself.

He’s waiting to bless you and bring you to “broad places.”

Teresa Allissa Citro
Founder and President, Thread of Hope, Inc.

Righteousness Brings Protection – Written By Pastor Michael Heil

HOLY HOLY HOLY

“The righteous are delivered from trouble, it comes to the wicked instead.” -Proverbs 11:8

Walking righteously brings many blessings into our life.

Righteousness provides light to guide us.

Righteousness possesses a good conscience.

Righteousness strengthens our faith.

In Proverbs 11:8 (and in verse 6), we also learn walking in righteousness protects us from destruction.

In Proverbs 11:8 (and in verse 6), we also learn walking in righteousness protects us from destruction.

While working in law enforcement, I have seen this spiritual truth play out countless times.  I’ve seen individuals whose thinking will not allow them to be “disrespected” or “mocked.”  So instead of trusting God and walking away from trouble, they get into a fight, assault a person, and end up in prison; or because they want to “do my own thing,” they end up breaking the law and using drugs;  danger and trouble are drawn to them like a magnet.  The words of Proverbs 11:8, “…it comes to the wicked instead,” manifest in their lives by the exaltation of pleasure, possessions, and power that draws destruction into their life.

For the Christian who is in Christ, the presence of the Spirit protects us and keeps us by leading us away from self-gratification.  Following Him, changes our priorities in life and changes our attitudes.  We develop day by day “the mind of Christ.”  Subtly, almost unconsciously, you and I make choices and decision out of our Godly vision of reality which keeps us from the dangers and traps of Satan.  We escape the perfect will of Satan for our life.  Most of the time, we don’t recognize the innumerable ways we have been delivered from trouble because the calamity never touched us.  By faithfully walking in righteousness, we are saved from trouble.

Written by Michael Heil

Happy Sunday

SUNDAY 1

 

Psalm 24

Psalm of David

The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it.
The world and all its people belong to him.
For he laid the earth’s foundation on the seas
and built it on the ocean depths.

Who may climb the mountain of the Lord?
Who may stand in his holy place?
Only those whose hands and hearts are pure,
who do not worship idols
and never tell lies.
They will receive the Lord’s blessing
and have a right relationship with God their savior.
Such people may seek you
    and worship in your presence, O God of Jacob.

Interlude

Open up, ancient gates!
Open up, ancient doors,
and let the King of glory enter.
Who is the King of glory?
The Lord, strong and mighty;
the Lord, invincible in battle.
Open up, ancient gates!
Open up, ancient doors,
and let the King of glory enter.
Who is the King of glory?
The Lord of Heaven’s Armies—
he is the King of glory.

Interlude

Our Will Vs. God’s Will

PRIDE 1

Our will and God’s will are two very different wills.

God’s will always cost you something. That something is your own will. Doing things your way goes against His will. His will may not make sense to you or those around you, but to be in His perfect will means you obey what the Spirit is showing you to do. It’s okay if those around you will mock you, make fun of you, or even shun you.  Better for a person to be obedient to God than man. I have never seen the righteous abandoned or forsaken by the All-Knowing, All-Seeing God. Remember the only One who sees and knows the heart of any person is the One who created that person.

I encourage you this day to trust God who has a perfect, wonderful, and amazing plan for your life. It doesn’t matter what you have gone through because you’re still alive, breathing, and living in the land of the living. There’s an excitement in my heart I can’t contain because I know who God is and His power to heal, restore, and bless.

My prayer for all those reading this is you will ask God for yourself what His plan is for YOU, and then be brave to step up, and do what he shows you no matter who likes you or who believes you. God honors the lives of those who trust Him no matter their circumstances. What we think, feel, or believe is not always true. The Spirit of God will always reveal what is true, what you feel, or what you think. He’s faithful to the faithful. Trust him no matter what you are faced with today. I do not know a failing God. I know a God who is triumphant in all circumstances and in all things and never ever fails those who put their trust in their God.

There are those who trust in their careers, families, money, and other things. But those things and people might fail you. God never, never fails you. Bad things happen to the just and the unjust, but God delivers the righteous from ALL their troubles. Can you say with me:  “Thank you, God.  Because my life is yours, do whatever you like with it. I’m still going to trust and obey.”

Teresa Allissa Citro,
Founder & President, Thread of Hope, Inc.

A Spiritual Reality; It’s All About God.

 

As children of God, we live in a spiritual reality that is continual.

The spiritual reality is:  IT IS ALL ABOUT GOD.

In Him, we live and move and have our being.  He is the One Who Sustains us and the One Who Cares for us, and for this very reason, we don’t have to worry.  He knows what we need.

We know this because of what the Gospel of Luke tells us:

“Then, turning to his disciples, Jesus said, ‘That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food to eat or enough clothes to wear.  For life is more than food, and your body more than clothing.  Look at the ravens. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for God feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than any birds! Can all your worries add a single moment to your life? And if worry can’t accomplish a little thing like that, what’s the use of worrying over bigger things?'” -Luke 12:22-26

god

EVERYTHING we have originates from GOD who has bestowed blessings and abilities, INCLUDING the ability to work in order to make money (the wealth we receive in a paycheck no matter what the amount), upon HIS children.

“‘Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and he will give you everything you need.  So don’t be afraid, little flock. For it gives your Father great happiness to give you the Kingdom.  Sell your possessions and give to those in need. This will store up treasure for you in heaven! And the purses of heaven never get old or develop holes. Your treasure will be safe; no thief can steal it and no moth can destroy it.  Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.'” -Luke 12:31-34

Since GOD is the Provider of all that we have and since everything originates with HIM, we, HIS children, do NOT have to worry nor do we have to beg HIM for our needs because HE knows what we need before we even ask.

“Look at the lilies and how they grow.  They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are.  And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you.  Why do you have so little faith?  And don’t be concerned about what to eat and what to drink.  Don’t worry about such things.  These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers all over the world, but your Father already knows your needs.” -Luke 22:27-30

PRAY 3

Our Father takes great care of His creation.  His creation is you and me.  He takes care of us.

Because He is our Father, we can have confidence and live without fear, knowing God has already gone before us.  He has taken care of our today, our tomorrow, and our future.

*

Be blessed, Children of God, for He who watches over you NEVER slumbers or sleeps.

Much love to you all,

Linda A. Knowles

Executive Director, Thread of Hope, Inc.

“And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” -Philippians 4:19

“‘For the LORD your God has blessed you in all that you have done; He has known your wanderings through this great wilderness These forty years the LORD your God has been with you; you have not lacked a thing.'” -Deuteronomy 2:7

“And in Him you have been made complete, and He is the head over all rule and authority.” -Colossians 2:10

God Despises Pretense & Hypocrisy

mask-1You can sing, shout, and dance, all you want. You can hold the Holy Days sacred, and perform the acts. If they are performed with a corrupt heart, they are despised by God! Repent before Almighty God, and receive the blessings!

Teresa Allissa Citro

Founder & President, Thread Of Hope, Inc.