Faith Without Works?

planning, faith, spiritual health, poetry, podcaster, poem, action, waiting on God

The last poem that I wrote is entitled Released. You can find that poem here. Today’s poem is simple, but meant to stir some thought about our spiritual life. God gave us a gift: his Son. When you receive a gift, there is nothing that you have to do on your part. You just accept it. We are told in Ephesians 2: 8-9; “For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.”

When it comes to prayers being answered, we have those of us who say that we are waiting on God, and do nothing. But, then there are those of us who live as if God has answered by acting upon it. Which one is showing faith?

planning, faith, spiritual health, poetry, podcaster, poem, action, waiting on God

Faith Without Works?

I’ve got faith. What about you?

I’ve got faith. Works added too.

I’m waiting on God to do his part.

I’m living as if he’s already started.

Don’t understand, prayed in my bed.

Well don’t you know?

Without works it’s dead?

Meditation Scripture

Faith Without Works Is Dead

14 What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? 15 If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? 17 Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

18 But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without [ayour works, and I will show you my faith by my works. 19 You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble! 20 But do you want to know, O foolish man, that faith without works is dead? 21 Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered Isaac his son on the altar? 22 Do you see that faith was working together with his works, and by works faith was made perfect? 23 And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” And he was called the friend of God. 24 You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only.

25 Likewise, was not Rahab the harlot also justified by works when she received the messengers and sent them out another way?

26 For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.

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Released

walls, piercing, heart, God, emotional health, thriving, spiritual health, mental health, living, healing, survival, poetry,poem, poet, author, blogger, blogger life, author life, writer

The last poem that I wrote, The Advancer, can be found here. Today’s poem, Released, describes what happens when Christ gets a hold of our hearts. When we are open, he can heal us, and take us from a life of just surviving, to a fruitful life filled with thriving. God bless!

walls, piercing, heart, God, emotional health, thriving, spiritual health, mental health, living, healing, survival, poetry,poem, poet, author, blogger, blogger life, author life, writer
by Brodie Vissers-Shopify

Released

The Savior

The Son of God

He pierces

Straight through the heart

To the point

Where we Confess

That we’re tired

Of the Same, Old Mess

The Lifestyle

Of just coping and surviving

We’re done now

Let’s get to the thriving

He breaks down

The power of Sin

Holy Spirit

Come dwells within

He breaks down

All the walls of doubt

And His Name

Alone gives him clout

He breaks down

All power of sin

All God’s people

Can say Amen

Meditation Verse

Some of you were once like that. But you were cleansed; you were made holy; you were made right with God by calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.

1 Corinthians 6:11

Episode 12: Lost in the Woods of Trauma

trauma, identity, stolen identity, anxiety, depression, emotional health, mental health, spiritual health, ptsd survivor, podcast, poet, poetry, podcaster, blogger life, blogger, author, woods, lost, rock bottom

Episode 12: Lost in the Woods of Trauma
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Have you ever lost your kid? That’s the scariest thing in the world? What about you? Have you ever been lost yourself? I mean really lost!!! Think about how you felt. Today, on Healing Our Brokenness, we are going to discuss being lost in the woods. Lost in the woods is a term that I give for “Identity Issues of Trauma.” I described this issue in the poem that I wrote that is called, “Stolen Identity”. You can find that poem here.

trauma, identity, stolen identity, anxiety, depression, emotional health, mental health, spiritual health, ptsd survivor, podcast, poet, poetry, podcaster, blogger life, blogger, author, woods, lost, rock bottom
Photo by Simon Matzinger on Pexels.com

  • Lost in the Woods of Trauma Outline
  • Discussion of Being Lost
  • What Led to My Discovery of Being Lost in the Woods
  • How I Grounded Myself
  • What did David Do When he was Lost in the Woods?
  • Bible Verses to Meditate On

Psalm 143 King James Version (KJV)

143 Hear my prayer, O Lord, give ear to my supplications: in thy faithfulness answer me, and in thy righteousness.

And enter not into judgment with thy servant: for in thy sight shall no man living be justified.

For the enemy hath persecuted my soul; he hath smitten my life down to the ground; he hath made me to dwell in darkness, as those that have been long dead.

Therefore is my spirit overwhelmed within me; my heart within me is desolate.

I remember the days of old; I meditate on all thy works; I muse on the work of thy hands.

I stretch forth my hands unto thee: my soul thirsteth after thee, as a thirsty land. Selah.

Hear me speedily, O Lord: my spirit faileth: hide not thy face from me, lest I be like unto them that go down into the pit.

Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee.

Deliver me, O Lord, from mine enemies: I flee unto thee to hide me.

10 Teach me to do thy will; for thou art my God: thy spirit is good; lead me into the land of uprightness.

11 Quicken me, O Lord, for thy name’s sake: for thy righteousness’ sake bring my soul out of trouble.

12 And of thy mercy cut off mine enemies, and destroy all them that afflict my soul: for I am thy servant.

Gratitude, Gratitude

poet, poem, poetry, podcast, attitude, spiritual health

A couple of months ago, I wrote a post entitled “Gratitude Check”. You can find that post here. Today, I decided to write a poem to help us to dissect the why behind gratitude.

poet, poem, poetry, podcast, attitude, spiritual health
Photo by Artem Bali on Pexels.com

Gratitude, Gratitude

Gratitude, Gratitude

It all stems from our attitude.

Are we entitled, or undeserving?

Happy for,

Or sad and nerving?

Can we just thank him?

For Life and Health?

And every moment we take our breath?

Can we write down the things he’s done?

To show our God his love has won?

Gratitude, Gratitude

It all stems from our attitude.

Bible Verses to Meditate on:

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

1 Thessalonians 5: 18

100 Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.

Serve the Lord with gladness: come before his presence with singing.

Know ye that the Lord he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

For the Lord is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.King James Version (KJV)

Psalms 100

Elijah and the Widow

oil, bread, rise, Elijah and the Widow, 1 Kings 17, poet, poetry, poem, spiritual health, provision, God, food

Background on Elijah and the Widow

oil, bread, rise, Elijah and the Widow, 1 Kings 17, poet, poetry, poem, spiritual health, provision, God, food
Photo by Dana Tentis on Pexels.com

The last poem that I wrote was entitled Blessings, Blessings. That poem can be found here. This poem retells the story of Elijah and the widow.

Elijah and the Widow

God sent me here.

That’s why I’ve come.

Cause I was told you are the one.

Please feed me now.

I mustn’t starve.

Have no more food.

Barely got lard.

What do you have?

Please look and see!

Some bread and oil,

Not fit for three.

Please feed me first.

Then you will see,

How God provides,

So bountifully.

And she obeyed, until it hurt.

Then God came down,

And proved her worth.

See she forgot that God provides.

The oil increased.

The bread did rise.

Elijah and the Widow at Zarephath

Some time later the brook dried up because there had been no rain in the land. Then the word of the Lord came to him: “Go at once to Zarephath in the region of Sidon and stay there. I have directed a widowthere to supply you with food.” 10 So he went to Zarephath. When he came to the town gate, a widow was there gathering sticks. He called to her and asked, “Would you bring me a little water in a jar so I may have a drink?” 11 As she was going to get it, he called, “And bring me, please, a piece of bread.”

12 “As surely as the Lord your God lives,” she replied, “I don’t have any bread—only a handful of flour in a jar and a little olive oil in a jug. I am gathering a few sticks to take home and make a meal for myself and my son, that we may eat it—and die.”

13 Elijah said to her, “Don’t be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small loaf of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son.14 For this is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lordsends rain on the land.’”

15 She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family. 16 For the jar of flour was not used up and the jug of oil did not run dry, in keeping with the word of the Lord spoken by Elijah.


Dancing in the Rain

rain, feet, dancing, dancing in the rain, David, emotional health, mental health, spiritual health, poet, poetry, storms

Dancing in the Rain
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The last podcast that was recorded was Episode 10: Pick up your mat and walk! You can find that episode here. Today’s episode is called “Dancing in the Rain”. I know that there are quite a few of you who like to dance. Unfortunately, this isn’t the kind of dancing that I am talking about. This dancing deals with the response to the storms of life. Click the play button and take a listen. God bless!

rain, feet, dancing, dancing in the rain, David, emotional health, mental health, spiritual health, poet, poetry, storms
Photo by Alicia Zinn on Pexels.com

Outline of Dancing in the Rain podcast:

  • Dancing in the Rain Movie-style
  • Dancing in the Rain Storm style
  • How Job danced in the Rain
  • How I danced in the Rain
  • How Do you Dance in the Rain?
  • Bible Verses to Meditate On:

Job 1

There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.

And there were born unto him seven sons and three daughters.

His substance also was seven thousand sheep, and three thousand camels, and five hundred yoke of oxen, and five hundred she asses, and a very great household; so that this man was the greatest of all the men of the east.

And his sons went and feasted in their houses, every one his day; and sent and called for their three sisters to eat and to drink with them.

And it was so, when the days of their feasting were gone about, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all: for Job said, It may be that my sons have sinned, and cursed God in their hearts. Thus did Job continually.

Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them.

And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.

And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?

Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, Doth Job fear God for nought?

10 Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land.

11 But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face.

12 And the Lord said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the Lord.

13 And there was a day when his sons and his daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother’s house:

14 And there came a messenger unto Job, and said, The oxen were plowing, and the asses feeding beside them:

15 And the Sabeans fell upon them, and took them away; yea, they have slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.

16 While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The fire of God is fallen from heaven, and hath burned up the sheep, and the servants, and consumed them; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.

17 While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, The Chaldeans made out three bands, and fell upon the camels, and have carried them away, yea, and slain the servants with the edge of the sword; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.

18 While he was yet speaking, there came also another, and said, Thy sons and thy daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother’s house:

19 And, behold, there came a great wind from the wilderness, and smote the four corners of the house, and it fell upon the young men, and they are dead; and I only am escaped alone to tell thee.

20 Then Job arose, and rent his mantle, and shaved his head, and fell down upon the ground, and worshipped,

21 And said, Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord.

22 In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.

Life isn’t about waiting for the storm to pass. It’s about learning to dance in the rain.

Vivian Greene

Life

life, emotional health, mental health, disappointments, spiritual health, crying, laughing, poetry, poem, blogger, author, podcaster

The last poem that I wrote was entitled, “Dance of Praise”. You can find that poem here. The poem for today is “Life”. It deals with all the joys and difficulties that one would find in daily living.

life, emotional health, mental health, disappointments, spiritual health, crying, laughing, poetry, poem, blogger, author, podcaster
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

Life.

Filled with wonder.

Filled with strife.

One must ponder,

This thing called life.

Life.

Filled with fears.

Filled with doubt.

Brings a belly-roaring shout.

Life.

Filled with weeping.

Filled with sorrow.

And a hoping for tomorrow.

Life.

Filled with laughs.

Filled with cries.

And those never-ending sighs.

Life.

Bible Verses to Meditate On

The Lord will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.

Psalms 121:7-8

Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.

Ephesians 5: 15-16

Whoever pursues righteousness and love
finds life, prosperity and honor.

Proverbs 21:21

For we live by faith, not by sight.

2 Corinthians 5:7

Episode 10: Pick up your mat and walk!

mat, emotional health, mental health, pool of Bethesda, Jesus, excuses, brokenness, healing, spiritual health

Episode 10: Pick up your mat and walk!
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mat, emotional health, mental health, pool of Bethesda, Jesus, excuses, brokenness, healing, spiritual health
Pick Up Your Mat and Walk

Last week’s podcast was Episode 9: The Never-ending Shame Cycle.  You can find that podcast episode here.  This week’s podcast is Episode 10:  Pick up Your Mat and Walk.  Are you sick and tired of not being healed?  Do you feel like you have been laying down forever?  Then this podcast is for you.

Outline of Podcast: Pick up your mat and walk!

  • Story of Man at the Pool of Bethesda
  • Deeper Meaning of Jesus’ Question
  • What Mat are You Carrying?
  • How To Get Up
  • Do You Want to Be Made Well?
  • Scripture Verses to Meditate On

John 5: 1-14

Some time later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish festivals. Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda, and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades. Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. [4] 5 One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?”

“Sir,” the invalid replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.”

Then Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked.

The day on which this took place was a Sabbath, 10 and so the Jewish leaders said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath; the law forbids you to carry your mat.”

11 But he replied, “The man who made me well said to me, ‘Pick up your mat and walk.’ ”

12 So they asked him, “Who is this fellow who told you to pick it up and walk?”

13 The man who was healed had no idea who it was, for Jesus had slipped away into the crowd that was there.

14 Later Jesus found him at the temple and said to him, “See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.” 15 The man went away and told the Jewish leaders that it was Jesus who had made him well.

Transformation

poet, blog, blogger, poetry, renewal, minds, hearts, Romans 12

The last poem that I wrote is entitled, “Rubble”.  This poem deals with the trials that we face and our responses to them.  You can find that poem here.

Today’s poem, “Transformation”, deals with the transformation and renewal of our minds and hearts.

poet, blog, blogger, poetry, renewal, minds, hearts, Romans 12

Transformation

Savior, renew my mind.

Make me new wine.

Please fill my jar.

Right where you are.

Make me complete.

From head to feet.

Start with the heart.

Can’t miss the mark.

Bible Verses to Meditate on:

Romans 12: 1-2

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Matthew 15:19

For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies:

Episode 8: The Fear and Exhaustion Cocktail

emotional health, mental health, ptsd, anxiety, ptsd survivor, physical health, spiritual health, burnout, Elijah, David,

Episode 8: The Fear and Exhaustion Cocktail
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Our last podcast, Episode 7:  The Benefits of Suffering, was recorded two weeks ago.  When we are dealing with suffering, as the word itself suggests, there seems to be no benefits at all.  God has a word for all of us in how we can see this differently.  That episode can be found here.

Today’s episode, Episode 8: The Fear and Exhaustion Cocktail lets us know the dangers of what happens when we mix the two.  Hold onto your seats!  Or, should I say run fast!

emotional health, mental health, ptsd, anxiety, ptsd survivor, physical health, spiritual health, burnout, Elijah, David,
Photo by Rene Asmussen on Pexels.com

The Fear and Exhaustion Cocktail Outline

  • Cause and Effect of Fear
  • Cause and Effect of Exhaustion
  • Three Things That Happen when we Drink the Fear and Exhaustion Cocktail
  • Remedy for Fear and Exhaustion Hangover
  • What Happened when I Drank the Fear and Exhaustion Cocktail
  • Bible Verses for Today’s podcast

David Among the Philistines-1 Samuel 27

Part 1

27 But David thought to himself, “One of these days I will be destroyed by the hand of Saul. The best thing I can do is to escape to the land of the Philistines. Then Saul will give up searching for me anywhere in Israel, and I will slip out of his hand.”

So David and the six hundred men with him left and went over to Achish son of Maok king of Gath. David and his men settled in Gath with Achish. Each man had his family with him, and David had his two wives: Ahinoam of Jezreel and Abigail of Carmel, the widow of Nabal.When Saul was told that David had fled to Gath, he no longer searched for him.

Then David said to Achish, “If I have found favor in your eyes, let a place be assigned to me in one of the country towns, that I may live there. Why should your servant live in the royal city with you?”

So on that day Achish gave him Ziklag, and it has belonged to the kings of Judah ever since. David lived in Philistine territory a year and four months.

Part 2

Now David and his men went up and raided the Geshurites, the Girzites and the Amalekites. (From ancient times these peoples had lived in the land extending to Shur and Egypt.) Whenever David attacked an area, he did not leave a man or woman alive, but took sheep and cattle, donkeys and camels, and clothes. Then he returned to Achish.

10 When Achish asked, “Where did you go raiding today?” David would say, “Against the Negev of Judah” or “Against the Negev of Jerahmeel” or “Against the Negev of the Kenites.” 11 He did not leave a man or woman alive to be brought to Gath, for he thought, “They might inform on us and say, ‘This is what David did.’” And such was his practice as long as he lived in Philistine territory. 12 Achish trusted David and said to himself, “He has become so obnoxious to his people, the Israelites, that he will be my servant for life.”

 

Elijah Flees to Horeb 1 Kings 19

19 Now Ahab told Jezebel everything Elijah had done and how he had killed all the prophets with the sword. So Jezebel sent a messenger to Elijah to say, “May the gods deal with me, be it ever so severely, if by this time tomorrow I do not make your life like that of one of them.”

Elijah was afraid[a] and ran for his life. When he came to Beersheba in Judah, he left his servant there, while he himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness. He came to a broom bush, sat down under it and prayed that he might die. “I have had enough, Lord,” he said. “Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors.” Then he lay down under the bush and fell asleep.

All at once an angel touched him and said, “Get up and eat.” He looked around, and there by his head was some bread baked over hot coals, and a jar of water. He ate and drank and then lay down again.

The angel of the Lord came back a second time and touched him and said, “Get up and eat, for the journey is too much for you.” So he got up and ate and drank. Strengthened by that food, he traveled forty days and forty nights until he reached Horeb, the mountain of God. There he went into a cave and spent the night.

The Lord Appears to Elijah

And the word of the Lord came to him: “What are you doing here, Elijah?”

10 He replied, “I have been very zealous for the Lord God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, torn down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too.”

11 The Lord said, “Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by.”

Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shatteredthe rocks before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake.12 After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper. 13 When Elijah heard it, he pulled his cloak over his face and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave.

Then a voice said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”

14 He replied, “I have been very zealous for the Lord God Almighty. The Israelites have rejected your covenant, torn down your altars, and put your prophets to death with the sword. I am the only one left, and now they are trying to kill me too.”

15 The Lord said to him, “Go back the way you came, and go to the Desert of Damascus. When you get there, anoint Hazael king over Aram.16 Also, anoint Jehu son of Nimshi king over Israel, and anoint Elisha son of Shaphat from Abel Meholah to succeed you as prophet. 17 Jehu will put to death any who escape the sword of Hazael, and Elisha will put to death any who escape the sword of Jehu. 18 Yet I reserve seven thousand in Israel—all whose knees have not bowed down to Baal and whose mouths have not kissed him.”

The Call of Elisha

19 So Elijah went from there and found Elisha son of Shaphat. He was plowing with twelve yoke of oxen, and he himself was driving the twelfth pair. Elijah went up to him and threw his cloak around him. 20 Elisha then left his oxen and ran after Elijah. “Let me kiss my father and mother goodbye,” he said, “and then I will come with you.”

“Go back,” Elijah replied. “What have I done to you?”

21 So Elisha left him and went back. He took his yoke of oxen and slaughtered them. He burned the plowing equipment to cook the meat and gave it to the people, and they ate. Then he set out to follow Elijah and became his servant.