Give it All

Teresa Poucher

Do you feel you’ve given your all, but you just aren’t getting the answers you need? What else do you have to offer? Not just your money, time, devotion, witnessing, cooking for people, giving others a lift to church, or just plain old hard work.

 

  We are accustomed to doing good works.  Yet today, I feel like my works aren’t enough.  I can’t impress God with my talent.  All our gifts and callings are from Him anyway.  So, I feel like the person that is re-gifting. 

 

  Unlike other people, God is interested in your broken things:  All your junk, trash, preconceived ideas, faults, failures, broken hearts, dreams, sickness, doubts, fears, turmoil…  

 

  God wants it ALL.

 

“Casting all your care upon him; for hecareth for you.” (1Peter 5:7)

Boards and Broken Pieces

Teresa Poucher

Poucher

The 26th chapter of Acts speaks of Paul as a prisoner being tried before Festus and King Agrippa. Paul’s testimony was so compelling that King Agrippa told Paul he almost persuaded him to become a Christian. They were ready to free him, but Paul had appealed to Caesar so they sent him on to Rome.


When it was time to depart by ship, Paul warned them not to sail. However, the owner and centurion thought they knew better. The ship soon found itself in a typhoon. “And when neither sun nor stars in many days appeared, and no small tempest lay on us, all hope that we should be saved was then taken away.” (Acts 27:20)

 

  Have you also been on a journey sailing your ship only to find out you may be the captain, but Jesus is the master of the wind?  Maybe we should have waited a little longer.  Perhaps I wouldn’t be in this storm.  Do you feel much like the souls on board this ship?  All hope of being saved is gone.  

 

But after long abstinence Paul stood forth in the midst of them, and said, Sirs, ye should have hearkened unto me, and not have loosed from Crete, and to have gained this harm and loss.

(Acts 27:21-22)

 

  Long abstinence? Do you think maybe Paul had a prayer meeting?  Did he intercede for all the 276 souls on this ship?

 

   According to Acts 27:42, the soldiers were ready to kill all the prisoners.  Yet Paul stood on behalf of all aboard this ship.  

 

“…they which could swim should cast themselves first into the sea, and get to land: And the rest, some on boards, and some on broken pieces of the ship. And so it came to pass, that they escaped all safe to land.” (Acts 27:43-44)

 

Hold fast; God isn’t through with you yet. You have your own Caesar to appeal to. In the meantime, there are many souls to reach. Grab a board, even a broken piece. There are still more souls to reach and some prisoners to set free.

Don’t Take it Personally

Teresa Poucher

Have you ever had an individual in your life for whom you cared deeply? ‘Seems like a stranger can say something ugly to you, and you can forgive and get over it. Yet, when it’s close to home, or someone for whom you care, the sting lingers. If you spend a lot of time with them, you better get over it, or it will eat your lunch and your dinner too!

Many years ago, while in prayer for such a situation, the Lord spoke these words to my heart: “Don’t condemn, push away, or take it personally.” The first two were easy with the Lord’s help. “Don’t take it personally” was much harder. Yet, if we look to the Word of God, we see, “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood...” (Ephesians 6:12)


  This person is not making a personal attack.  They are reacting to a hurt they haven’t resolved yet.

  Forgiveness is so wonderful; it heals us when we practice it.  I tend to take things personally.  It’s my fault, I must have messed up.  I feel bad when many things are not even my fault. 

Which brings me to why wouldn’t I take it personally when I read the Word of God? The Word of the Lord is so full of promises. God robed Himself in flesh and was “born in a barn,” so to speak. He was killed by those to whom He gave life. All so we could spend eternity with Him. What wondrous love and compassion. Yes, He died for MYsin. It was my fault; I was guilty. I take that very personally. He never gives up on us, and He never gets ugly with us, but He gently corrects us. I want to take His every desire personally, don’t you?

It’s Time

Teresa Poucher

 

I have an old anniversary clock that hasn’t worked for at least 12 years. Why do I keep it? It brings back memories as far back as I can recall. It is from Mom and Dad. This clock is special to me, especially since I was only eight when he passed from this life. He just didn’t have enough time.

 

I own an Apple Watch; it’s amazing what all that thing can do. For sure, it keeps time and much more. ‘Seems we all live by our watch and time. We can watch the land and see the seasons change. We are aware of weather patterns and watch for them. Here in Louisiana, in the winter, when the rain is coming, we know it will turn cold soon, and we are watching for it. In the summer, if the sky is red in the morning, we know it will rain that day.

 

Johann, our German Shepherd, was a great watchdog. He was familiar with our activities and was always on the lookout, listening for a distant sound or unusual happening. If I said “watch,” Johann would run to the window to check everything out. Unlike my anniversary clock, he kept good time.

 

  If we look and listen to the signs around us, we can see and hear many unusual happenings.  The end time is upon us.  Men’s hearts are failing them, and there are many problems with politics, crime, weather-related crises, and economics.  

 

And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.” (Roman 13:11)

 

“Be sober, be vigilant*; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” (1Peter 5:8)

 

  *Noah Webster 1828 VIG’ILANT, a. [L. vigilans.] Watchful; circumspect; attentive to discover and avoid danger, or to provide for safety.

 

We know our days are numbered. If we ever prayed, now is the time to pray more. If John the Baptist prepared the way of the Lord preaching repentance, we need to pray that the world sees the need for repentance. We need to stand in the gap, make up the hedge, and pray that God will give revelation to the lost and a spirit of revival with the outpouring of his Holy Spirit. Let us watch…

 

“Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.” (Ephesians 5:16)

 

What are you doing with your time?

Jesus Name

Teresa Poucher

  I was curious how in the Old Testament,the people called God many things.   He has so many titles.  When Moses went to Pharaoh, he asked God, “Who do I say sent me?” God responded, “I AM THAT I AM.”  How in the world can the three letters, I AM, be so powerful?  He is self-sufficientand self-sustaining.  He is whatever you need in your life.  

 

  He gave us a commandment not to take His Name in vain.  I think we have all done this at some point in our life, maybe not by swearing, but by just being casual with it.  We go many years and don’t know His Name. Why? I feel Iike God was planning to reveal His Name in such a powerfulway.  He spent years trying to reveal to us who He was and what He desired to perform.

 

  The Romans and Pharisees crucifiedJesus.  They couldn’t handle His popularity and healing. In the book of Acts, the disciples received the Holy Ghost.  They started preaching and teaching in His Name.  Instead of just Jesus going around preaching and healing, they had thousands of disciples applying His Name.

 

  The New Testament church was born on the day of Pentecost.  (Acts 2). The name,Jesus, appears 67 times in the book of Acts.  Of those 67 times, 17 say “name of Jesus.”  

Is praying in Jesus’s name necessary?

 

And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus…” (Colossians 3:17)

 

Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)

 

The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us…” (IPeter 3:21)

 

For the scripture saith unto Pharaoh, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might shew my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth.” (Romans 9:17)

 

There have been instances I only had time to say “Jesus!” and He kept me from an accident. I’m so thankful He revealed His Name to us. I desire to honor and apply it in all I say and do today and always.

Wayward Souls

Teresa Poucher

We all know a wayward soul, maybe a child, husband, or siblings. It is heartbreaking as well as discouraging.  

 

  Years ago, God spoke to my heart, “I’m going to give you a Lazarus miracle.”  The following week my pastor preached on the miracle of Lazarus.  I felt the confirmation and was super excited.  

 

  Well, it’s been years and still no resurrection.  I worried; I prayed, cried, and waited.  Pouting doesn’t help, nor does trying to figure out what God is going to do.  He doesn’t need help.  He desires faith!  So, what must I do?   Speak the Word out loud.  We have whatsoever we saith.  What are we saying?  

 

So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”(Romans 10:17)

 

…it was impossible for God to lie…” (Hebrews 6:18)

For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.” (Acts 2:39)

 

  It doesn’t matter if they are far off geographically or spiritually.  Speak whatever scriptures the Lord has laid on your heart.  

 

I will get my Lazarus miracle — God is faithful. So, when you get disheartened, think of Lazarus. Someone had to die. Mary and Martha knew Jesus could heal their brother, but he decided not to show. They had to watch him die and bury him. Then four days later, He showed up. All hope was gone. They thought God let them down or perhaps really didn’t love them.

 

  Rest assured He does love you.  He has not forgotten you.  He has a plan.  God is going to get the glory from this situation that seems grave.  

 

You can get excited again because He is the resurrection and the life.

Things That are Lost

Teresa Poucher

  I lost a set of keys once; it was a cool spring evening.  I found them the following fall in a coat pocket.  We don’t get lost or lose things on purpose; it happens when we are careless.

 

  In Luke chapter 15, we read of the lost sheep, a lost coin, and a young man we know as “the prodigal son.”

 

  Sheep are very vulnerable, which is why they need a shepherd.  Staying close in a flock keeps them from being singled out and attacked.  Like the lost sheep, when we begin to stray from the flock, we are in danger.  Many times, depression leads to isolation making us exposed to an attack with no one to help.  Sadly, there always seem to be a few Christians who will isolate themselves from their church family.

 

When we look at the parable of the lost coin, we know the lady of the house had to sweep to find her coin. Possibly, some dust or trash might have accumulated, but the coin is still in the house. How can a child of God be lost in His house? By not realizing how valuable they are, as well as what they possess in God. If it had been a penny or a quarter, I don’t think she would have searched so diligently. Could we imagine some of us fall in this category of not recognizing the treasure we are and possess?

 

The prodigal son asks his father to give him his portion of his goods. In my words, “I want what I have coming to me – pronto!”This practice was not the custom in his day, yet his father agrees, knowing it was bad news. We know he squandered everything he had in riotous living. He wound up slopping pigs to survive, and after a while, the slop was looking pretty good to eat.

 

Then he came to himself. He remembered his father’s house; even the servants had it better than he did. He came to a turning point and repented. He went from “give me” to “make me one of the hired servants.”

 

  When we live for God and let God make us what He desires, we will be full of joy and peace.  The glory, glitz, fame, and money don’t match up to what our God has in store for us.

 

If we continue in either of the first two allegories, could we end up like the prodigal son? The prodigal had a brother, making it 50% that was lost. Hmm… “Two women shall be grinding together; the one shall be taken, and the other left. Two men shall be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.”

(Luke 17:35-36)

 

  When anyone isolates or is down, let us encourage and stand in the gap for them, knowing the father is looking for us to come back and restore us.  When we do, all heaven will be rejoicing.

 

“And he arose and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him.”(Luke 15:20)

It’s Time to Make an Omelet

Teresa Poucher

My goodness, who doesn’t like omelets?  Someone allergic to eggs.  They are one of the healthiest breakfast foods we can enjoy, especially if loaded with vegetables. With a couple of hundred recipes to choose from, let’s break the yoke.  

  Sometimes we have a different type of yoke.  Webster’s dictionary defines a yoke as a mark of servitude, enslavement, or bondage, which can take many forms, much like an addiction.  Usually, drugs or alcohol first come to mind.  For the Christian, it may not be quite as noticeable.  I’m not condemning anyone.  I desire to see my habit so I can start my recovery process.

  That is the first step, isn’t it?  Our yokes might include gossip, lying, TV, social media, even work, and other forms of bondage.

  How do I break this type of yoke?

“Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?” (Isaiah 58:6)

If you want to break the yoke, you can cook an omelet or call a fast. Either way, let’s break some yokes.

Keep Pouring

Teresa Poucher

Consider the following passage from II Kings 4:1-7:

1 “Now there cried a certain woman of the wives of the sons of the prophets unto Elisha, saying, Thy servant my husband is dead; and thou knowest that thy servant did fear the Lord: and the creditor is come to take unto him my two sons to be bondmen.

  ‘Talk about a grim and seemingly hopeless situation.  This woman lost the love of her life, her protector, and her provider.  The rent is due, and she is broke.  Now the bank wants to take her boys, her only hope and joy.   

2 “And Elisha said unto her, What shall I do for thee? tell me, what hast thou in the house? And she said, Thine handmaid hath not any thing in the house, save a pot of oil.

3 Then he said, Go, borrow thee vessels abroad of all thy neighbors, even empty vessels; borrow not a few.

  Did she already sell everything in her house?  She didn’t even have any vessels.  We don’t want to be in her shoes, do we?

4 “And when thou art come in, thou shalt shut the door upon thee and upon thy sons, and shalt pour out into all those vessels, and thou shalt set aside that which is full.

5 So she went from him, and shut the door upon her and upon her sons, who brought the vessels to her; and she poured out.

Have you ever had a creditor call you? From what I understand, they will drive you nuts. Maybe that’s why she shut the door, possibly to avoid any distractions. Was she trying to hide, maybe ashamed or afraid they were going to snatch her boys at any moment?

  She began to pour out the only thing she had left.  The more she poured out, the more she had.

6 “And it came to pass, when the vessels were full, that she said unto her son, Bring me yet a vessel. And he said unto her, There is not a vessel more. And the oil stayed.

No matter how many vessels they would have gotten, she would have filled them all. It wasn’t up to her sons to pour out the oil; she had to do the pouring.

7 “Then she came and told the man of God. And he said, Go, sell the oil, and pay thy debt, and live thou and thy children of the rest.”

My goodness! This grim and hopeless situation turned completely around. Lesson learned. When all hope seems gone, keep pouring out of yourself. This miracle was not only a blessing to her but to those who needed oil as well.

Scripture often refers to the Holy Ghost, or Holy Spirit, as oil or wine. God will never run out; He longs to fill your vessel as well as all those you encounter. So, while you’re in your prayer closet, start pouring out.

But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.” (Matthew 6:6)

More of God

Teresa Poucher

  We say we want to get closer to God.  What is it that is creating a distance between us?  We go to church, read our Bible, pray and fast. Yet, it seems there is still something lacking.  I ask myself, is there sin in my life?  

  The other day I was talking to someone, and they said something that triggered an unpleasant memory.  One I had forgotten.  The emotion swept over me afresh.  I was very young when this happened. I had forgotten about it for a long time and never dealt with it.  

  I knew I had to forgive this wrongdoing.  In a way, I wanted to hold on to it for self-justification.  As I talked to the Lord about it, I realized, if I don’t forgive, I’m just as guilty as my offender.  

  Sometimes we need to be broken.  Too often, we have remnants that have taken space in our hearts.  Things that are covered don’t heal.  We must expose it, deal with it, and forgive.  Otherwise, it will hinder our walk with God.  Yet if we become broken before him, everything can flow out. 

  The only way to have more of God is to have less of me. 

“He must increase, but I must decrease.” (John 3:30)