Tag Archive | spirit

A Friend to the End

What it means to be a friend…by Sindy Nagel

 

I’m excited to share with you one thing I know today

What it means to be a friend in every single way

Then ask your inner being, “Does this reflect myself?”

“Am I this good of friend to anybody else?”

 

My Friend is always near me; He’s never far away

I can call upon His name and speak with Him all day

Especially in the evening hours, He makes His presence known

And watches over me when I’m in the sleeping zone

 

He’s quite the gentle man, never pushing His own way

He opens wide His arms of love when I have gone astray

Forgiving my transgressions, my iniquities, my sin

And helps me live a better life by His Spirit guide within

 

When I am feeling down in heart or my spirit seems depressed

My friend helps cheer my inner soul and shows me I am blessed

When fear sets in, or doubt attacks, or I feel my heart is weak

He reminds me of His promises, and things don’t look so bleak

 

When life gets hard and things go wrong, He is my hiding place

I run to Him, climb in His arms; He wipes tears from my face

He listens so intently to all the words my lips release

And offers me His wisdom, while giving me His peace

 

My Friend is there in good times too, when I am filled with glee

His heart swells up, He cracks a smile, when things go well for me

My biggest fan and cheerleader, He’s always the first one

To fondly pat me on the back and say the words, “Well done!”

 

Every morning when we meet for prayer, He listens and He speaks

When my challenges go on for days and days turn into weeks

I can pour out my troubles to Him and He’s the first to say,

“Don’t worry ‘bout a thing that’s coming, I’ve got your back today!”

 

Like two best friends can usually do, we enjoy our time together

We laugh and cry, we joke and play, like two birds of a feather

I always know when I’m in trouble, He’ll stay close by my side

He cheers me on, encourages me—in Him I can confide

 

My Friend is my comforter, my protector, and my guide

He loves me so much that He paid my debt and died

Although it sometimes feels this way, He left me not alone

He’s always there, deep within, because my heart’s His home

 

This poem is dedicated to My Friend, He is the world’s best

Even when I’ve fallen short and put Him to the test

He loves me more than I can grasp and shows it when He can

He is my Rock, my Friend, my King, and I, His biggest fan

 

I’ve shared with you one thing I know about being a good friend

Both in the good and bad times, an ally to the end

Now ask your inner being, “Does this reflect myself?”

“Am I this good of friend to anybody else?”

 

Go and be a friend today, and use this as your guide

Listen, pray, encourage the one you walk beside

Whether skies are sunny blue or darker shades of gray

Be the best that you can be–a good friend, through Him today


 

Step 4 – Write It Down

image of Stairs to open door. free concept 3d illustration

STEP 4 – WRITE IT DOWN

The best advice my Christian mentor offered me about listening to God’s voice was, “Write it down.” Writing down an idea reinforces it in my mind, so I will more accurately remember it later. The practice of writing in a journal absolutely, unequivocally produced for me the desired success in hearing the voice of God and maintaining the integrity of His words. Additionally, journaling your conversations with God offers many excellent benefits, It help you:

  • Differentiate your thoughts from God’s thoughts
  • Return to your conversations with the Lord when you experience times of disconnect from Him
  • Document the Scripture verses He leads you to
  • Preserve the exact words from God’s mouth, so your enemy can’t twist them around, and use them against you later

The Holy Spirit of God reveals His thoughts to me, and I don’t want to miss one of them. Every time I meet with God, I write down our conversation. He already knows my thoughts and questions, but I usually write them down anyway in a notebook or on the computer. Then I wait to hear Him speak. While I’m waiting to hear His voice, I journal every thought popping into my head, no matter how unusual or unimportant it seems. Why? Recording all my thoughts offers me the best chance of discerning the still, small voice of God from the other voices in my head.

As I go back and read what I have written in my journal, I can see where my own thoughts end and God’s begin. While my thoughts lack confidence and certainty, His thoughts are authoritative and convicting. My expressions are timid and self-condemning, but God’s voice exudes strength and encouragement. My ways are naïve and simple, while His ways are wise and wonderful.

Since the Holy Spirit reminds us of God’s Word, you will know the Spirit speaks to you when you recognize a concept or verse from the Bible infused with the words you have written in your journal. You will recognize God’s voice in your notes as He speaks to you in a loving, encouraging, affirming manner. His voice will be apparent when you feel conviction of a sin and when He speaks the truth in love. Read God’s encouragement in this example from my own journal:

Journal Entry on 04/15/2014

My child, I have called you My own. You belong to Me. Do you cherish Me the same way I cherish you? You are everything to Me. I have engraved you on the palms of My hands. Your name is burned into My mind. You are always on My heart. I will never forget you. Try writing My name on your palms and do not forget Me.

Remember what I say to you. Write it down. Draw on it when times are tough. Refer back to it when it becomes difficult for you to hear Me. It will help you recall what I have said to you. I have written so many things on your heart. I have written so many things in My Word. You have My written Word to help you find your way; you have My Holy Spirit to remind you of what I have said. The words spoken by My Spirit within you will lead you back to My written Word. Write down the words I put in your mind and on your heart. Examine them again as needed.

Life gets crazy. A time may come when you do not hear Me. Then you will refer back to your journal and relive the words I have spoken to you. Cling tightly to the spoken and written words I have given you. You will cherish the time we spent together in the past and allow My voice to be heard in your mind and heart once more.

You are My beloved child. I have so much wisdom to send your way. Be diligent in recording the knowledge I impart. Do not take it lightly. It may save you some day. Record everything you hear, big or small. Sometimes the biggest blessings are wrapped in the smallest packages. Record every thought that presents itself in your head. When the words begin to flow more rapidly, you will recognize My hand in it. When you look at it again, you will be able to discern your own thoughts from My thoughts in your journal writings.

Anything worth anything is worth writing down. Write down anything and everything I say to you.

 

As God mentioned above, my journal becomes really useful when I experience times of spiritual drought—when I feel disconnect from God, when He doesn’t speak to me, or when I can’t hear Him. In reading it again, I’m able to reconnect with God and remember what it sounds like to hear from Him. It helps me remember His character and how He feels toward me. It’s a way to reconnect my spirit with the Spirit of God inside me.

Pausing to listen for His voice is vital. How can I hear Him speak if I don’t leave room in the conversation for Him? Write down your comments or questions to God, and then lift your pen off the paper for a few moments to wait for His response. You may write a paragraph or two, but leave Him space on the page to reply. Do not feel the need to fill the air with your own voice and thoughts all the time. Learn to become comfortable with the silence. Ecclesiastes states, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: …a time to be silent and a time to speak” (Ecclesiastes 3:1, 7).

Clear your mind of all the clutter and obstructions. If random thoughts enter your mind—like your grocery shopping list or your “to do” list for the day—quickly jot them down so you won’t forget them, and then return your focus to God. Concentrate on the topic of your discussion. Reiterate your questions or comments to Him. Then write down the next thoughts that enter your mind—all of them, no matter how common or strange they may seem. Sometimes you will find abundant meaning in the simplest expressions.

Documenting what you hear God say to you will be monumental in your quest for intimacy with Him. With all the distractions we have pulling us away from God, taking time to read through your journal of His messages to you will put you back on track in focusing your attention in His direction. The ability to read and reread His loving, encouraging words, specifically given to you, will build your confidence in your relationship with Him, just like reading His message of love for you in the Bible does.

Had the scribes not put their time and attention into writing down the inspired words of God, we would not have the Bible today. If you do not write down what He says to you, those words may get lost in your head, and you may not be able to recall them exactly as He gave them to you. Satan would love to twist and mix up the words God has given you to make you believe his version instead. Just as you use the sword of the Spirit, the Word of God, to battle your enemy, you may also use the truth in God’s words you have written down in your journal to fight the one who opposes you. What God says to you will be reinforced by Scripture.

When you learn to distinguish God’s voice, or thoughts, as you are journaling your conversation with Him, write His voice in cursive or italics, and print your thoughts to distinguish the two voices on paper. When possible, date each conversation. Title your journal entry with a fitting name to identify the topic, so it’s easier to spot when you want to return to it later.

Maybe you love to blog or post on social media. When your conversations with God are not too personal, consider posting them in some form. You can tweak them to be more generic and allow others to enjoy a word from the Lord. If you don’t yet have a blog, you may set one up free on WordPress.org or WordPress.com. I maintain a blog on my website, www.sindynagel.com. The posts filed under the category titled “From God’s Heart to Yours” come from messages I hear from God and relay to you. Here’s a sample:

Life in the Son

Lord, I have been in a slump because of the dreary weather. Would You shine some light into my life? Does the sun, or the lack of it, really make that big of a difference in my life?

My child, if only you knew. Life in the Son makes a monumental difference. The sun I have placed in the sky may lift your spirits while it shines, but it does not provide constant light, as you know. Truly, My Son will shine His light into your darkness at all hours of the day and night. You never need to endure the storms of life alone. I am with you always. I will shine My light of life into every dark corner. I will light the way for you. I will lead you in the path of life.

My sweet daughter, life in the Son does make a big difference. Even on the darkest of days, you may have joy in your heart because you belong to Me. I am the true light that gives life. As you walk in the rain, My light will lead you on your way. Follow Me and you will never walk in darkness, because I am the light of life. (See John 8:12.) I have made My light shine in your heart to give you the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. (See 2 Corinthians 4:6.)

My precious one, life in the Son does make a big difference. You may be downcast for a little while, but consider what I have done for you. I am light. I have given you My light. In Me there is no darkness. (See 1 John 1:5.) Never again will you remain in darkness, because you believe in Me, the light of the world.

Are you downcast? Look to Me for your happiness. Are your spirits low? I will lift you up on eagle’s wings. Are you depressed? I will remove your sackcloth and clothe you with joy. Are you stuck in a pit? I will pull you out and place you on solid ground. Are you caught in the middle of a storm? I will weather it with you and bring you to a place of rest. I am with you.

Seek Me, My child, and I will give you joy in your spirit and peace in your heart. My light will illuminate the darkest of days. Even as we speak, the skies are getting brighter. I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in Me shall stay in darkness (John 12:46). Life in the Son does make a big difference. Choose the light of life.

 

The gift of the Holy Spirit and the ability to hear God’s voice are like having your own Bible, personalized just for you. At all times and in all places, you have access to God’s will and word through His Spirit inside you. The Holy Spirit takes the words of God and Jesus and makes them known to you. Listen to the inspired word of God inside you, and write it down. You’ll be thankful you have the opportunity to refer back to God’s personal words for you at a later date.

Each word He utters has value and may connect to other things He reveals to you later. The thoughts God gives you one day may make sense down the road a month or two later. You may ask God a question or pray a prayer He doesn’t answer for several days, weeks, months, even years. Recording your conversations will allow you to track and relate one to another, as God uncovers His will, plan, and purpose for your life.

Rejoice whether you hear one word, four sentences, or two paragraphs from the mouth of the Lord. Each and every word God speaks to you is precious and valuable. Sometimes the most priceless things God says are one-word expressions. Don’t compare how He speaks to you with how He speaks to your friend. He communicates with you exactly the way you can hear Him with exactly the word(s) you need to hear—no more, no less. Write down every word God says to you while you practice the art of listening to His voice. You’ll be really glad you did!

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Book One in Hearing God's Voice Series

Book One in Hearing God’s Voice Series

 

First Thessalonians Five Poem

As children of our Father God

Sons and daughters of the light

We belong to our heavenly King

And turn away the dark of night

 

We wear the breastplate of righteousness

Putting it on with faith and love

The helmet of salvation’s hope

Protects our heads above

 

The Lord Jesus died for us

As payment for our sin

He endured the wage, a gruesome death

Fought the battle and did win

 

No power on earth was strong enough

To keep Him in the grave

An angel of the Lord came down

And rolled the stone away

 

On the third day, He was raised to life

And seated at God’s right hand

His enemies made His footstool

He reigned over all the land

 

He gave His body and His blood

For our salvation to receive

When we confess Him as our Lord

And in our hearts believe

 

At all times, be full of joy

In everything, give thanks

This is God’s good and perfect will

For all our earthly days

 

Live in peace and harmony

With friend and foe the same

Hold on to good, avoid the bad

Bring honor to God’s name

 

Utter prayers without ceasing

Do not quench the Spirit’s fire

Let the God of peace Himself

Fulfill your heart’s desire

 

May your body, mind, and spirit

Be blameless in His eye

As the Holy Spirit cleanses you

And makes you sanctified

 

Daily read the Word of God

As the verses come alive

And remember this little ditty

From 1st Thessalonians 5.

Let Your Praises Ring

Praise the Lord, O my soul

Everything in me sings your praise

All my heart, soul, mind, and strength

Will praise you all of my days

 

Praise the Lord, O ye heavens

Praise the Lord, ye earth below

He is worthy of all glory

He is awesome, this I know

 

Before I rise in the morning

Let His praises be on my lips

And when I fall into bed at night

Let the praise in my heart do flips

 

Every moment I will praise Him

For He is my EVERY thing

Let admiration flow from my mouth

As my tongue His praises sing

 

I lift my hands in holy praise

To the Almighty God above

I delight myself in the Lord of lords

And He fills my heart with love

 

The One Who bore my sin and shame

Deserves the best words I can shout

His praise flows from within my soul

And through my lips pours out

 

He is my guardian and my friend

My trusted confidant

He provides me all I’ll ever need

Much more than I shall want

 

I thank Him for His Spirit

He placed within my heart

Who seals me for the final day

When this earth I will depart

 

I hear His voice within me

He whispers in my ear

“I am with you always…

There is no need to fear”

 

If Jesus is your Savior

The Lord of what you do

Just make the time to listen

And you will hear Him too

 

Escape the crowds and noise of life

And to the Lord draw near

Pay attention to the thoughts you think

His still, small voice you’ll hear

 

He speaks to us through Scripture

When we find ourselves in need

He counsels us in God’s good ways

And convicts us of our misdeed

 

He is our hope and healing

Our anchor in the storm

When battles rage against us

He keeps us safe and warm

 

Do not forsake your time with God

He wants to be your friend

To speak with you throughout your day

From the day’s beginning to its end

 

Pay attention to His voice within

As you walk out your faith today

Be conscious of His words to you

I bet you’ll hear Him say:

 

“My child, I love you more than life

You are My special lamb

I want to be Your Shepherd

And show you Who I AM…

 

I’m your light in the darkness

I’m your stronghold in the war

I’m your comfort in your sorrow

I’m the angel at your door

 

I give you food and shelter

I protect you from your foe

I speak the truth within your heart

The things that you should know

 

I hear you when you call Me

I’m with you in all you do

And when you cannot find the strength

You can be sure I’ll carry you

 

Trust in Me, obey My words

And I will see you through

I do not ask you to perform

Without preparing you

 

And when My work you’ve carried out

My joy is your reward

Let your praises ring, let Me hear you sing

‘Halleluiah to the Lord!’”


 

Take heart! We can have peace in a troubled world.

In John 16:33, Jesus says, “I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out His commands. This is love for God: to obey His commands. And His commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God. (1 John 5:2-4)

My dear children, in this world you will have trouble. But I have overcome the world. In Me you may find your peace. My peace is available to you at all times, through all the trials of this life. Though the storms rage around you, you need only look within to find your tranquility. I am in you and you are in Me, just as I am in My Father and My Father is in Me.

Turn to Me, and I will calm the wind and the waves that threaten you. Though you are weak, you may find your strength in Me. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid, for I am with you always. I do not leave you alone as orphans. My Spirit lives in your heart.

When you accept Me as your Savior, you are born of God. When you believe that I am the Son of God, you too, in faith, will overcome the world. Live victoriously in your faith. Show yourself to be My children by loving each other as I have loved you. When you obey My commands, you will remain in My love. My joy will be in you and your joy will be complete.

My peace and joy are available to you, even in the trials and turmoil this world brings. In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world. Remain in Me and I will remain in you. My love, joy and peace will remain in you as well. Let My joy be a shining light in a world full of darkness. Radiate My love to a broken world.

See also John 14:27, John 15:4, John 15:9-13.

Shine like a Star

 For it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.[1]

My star-in-darknessblessed one, live out your faith in awe and reverence, for it is I Who work in you to carry out My good and perfect will. Shine brightly like a star in a dark generation as you hold on to My word of life. Listen intently to My voice within you and radiate My words of love to a corrupt world. Take every opportunity to refer to Me in your conversations and your actions. Keep My name and My Word in a prominent position daily as you live out your life in peace. Walk in step with My Spirit, paying close attention to His teaching and prompting. Be a light to those who live in darkness. Deliver a message of hope and good news to those held in the bondage of sin. Bring sight to those who are blind to My ways. You are My messenger of salvation. Be a shining star, reflecting My glory for all to see.

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© OlgaYakovenko

[1] The New King James Version. (1982). (Php 2:13). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

A Delicate Balance

Body

Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, Who is in you, Whom you have received from God? You are not your own, you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)

Mind

Do not conform any longer 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)

Spirit

Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. Do not cast me from Your presence or take Your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of Your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me. (Psalm 51:10-12)

 

My beloved one,

Honor Me with your body—it is My dwelling place. Deep within your inmost being, I make your heart My home. Do not defile your body, it is My holy temple. You are not your own. You have been purchased by My blood; I redeemed you. You belong to Me; therefore, honor Me with your body. You are My child. Put to death the misdeeds of the body and live by the Spirit of the One Who adopted you for all time.  

Renew your mind with My good pleasure. Immerse yourself daily in My Word. Do not be conformed to the ways of this world, but be transformed by Me. Do not believe the lies that originate in the darkness. But listen to the truth spoken by My Spirit. Let Him recreate your thoughts. Bathe yourself in Scripture, using it as your fortress and your defense on the battlefield of your mind.

Your spirit has been linked with mine. Live in step with the Spirit, disregarding the desires of the flesh. Set your mind on what the Spirit desires and deny the impulses of the body. When your body, mind, and spirit all cooperate with My Spirit, He gives life to your mortal body and purifies your depraved mind.

The balance between body, mind, and spirit is delicate and difficult to achieve. Only when you live by My Spirit will you find your equilibrium. Listen to My voice within and submit yourself daily into My care and guidance. I am here to help you succeed. Take My hand and walk with Me. I will see you through your challenges and rejoice with you in your victories. We will overcome.

Let My children, called by My name, delight with Me in the joy of My salvation!


 

My Spirit Lives in You

My Spirit Lives in You

by Sindy Nagel

I am your refuge and your strength
Your shelter in the storm
I walk beside you in your trials
I keep you safe and warm

I formed you in your mother’s womb
You’re engraved upon my palms
Never will I leave your side
Let go of all your qualms

Your life rests in my loving arms
I will take care of you
I know the number of your days
And I will see you through

My Spirit lives deep in your heart
He is a faithful friend
Your close companion every day
‘til I come back again

Listen to My voice within
I whisper in your mind
Words of wisdom, love, and truth
Seek and you will find

I’ll comfort you and counsel you
My words are always true
My Spirit leads you on the path
That I’ve marked out for you

He will not speak on His own
But does what He should do
He takes from Me what is Mine
And makes it known to you

He tells My story for My glory
Bringing honor to My name
‘til all the world knows who I am
Will you now do the same?

Love Me with all your heart,
Your strength, mind, and soul
Love your neighbor as yourself
Make this your foremost goal

Love Me and obey My words
I’ll show Myself to you
Your life will radiate My light
In everything you do

I will never leave your side
Or forget that you are Mine
My Spirit dwells deep in your heart
I’m with you all the time

If only you could understand
What’s right within your reach
The depth of My great love for you
My Spirit’s here to teach

How far and wide, how tall and deep
My love for you does go
You’re always in My heart and mind
If only you could know

Take time, My love, to sit with Me
And listen to My voice
Forget the list of things to do
And drown out all the noise

You know My voice, You are my sheep
By name, I call to you
Open the ears within your heart
My Spirit lives in you


 

Small, but Deadly

Likewise the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole person, sets the whole course of his life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and creatures of the sea are being tamed and have been tamed by man, but no man can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil full of deadly poison. With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers, this should not be (James 3:5-10).

My blessed child, if you should boast, boast in the Lord only. Be careful what words roll off your tongue. Words expressed in haste are not retractable. Tune into My Spirit within for exactly the right words to say in all circumstances. When you are angry, take several deep breaths before you loose your tongue. The tongue may not be tamable, but do your best to keep it in on a short leash. Do not let your mouth stir up evil, but from your lips express your praise and worship. Do not curse your brother or sister who has been made in My image. Do not judge or consider yourself better than anyone. Assume a stance of humility. Mercy is not extended to the one who sits in the judgment seat. Instead, humble yourself and I will exalt you. Your tongue is a double-edged sword—sweet as honey and deadly as poison. Let your words flow as sugar through a sieve, rather than venom through a pipeline.


 

The Spirit of God in You

“We know that we live in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit” (1 John 4:13).

“You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the One who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world” (1 John 4:4).

My dear children, you belong to Me. You, who acknowledge Jesus is My Son, live in Me and I in you. You know I am in you by the Spirit I have given you. You have seen the light. In Me there is no darkness. Now live in the light by the power of My Spirit within you. The One who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. My Son, Jesus Christ, overcame the world. You, too, have been given the power to overcome the darkness when you believe Jesus is My Son, and you walk by My Spirit.

To walk by My Spirit, you must listen to My still, small voice within you. I speak to you from the depths of your heart. Find a place of solitude and listen intently to hear the voice of My Spirit. I speak to you throughout your day. As a shepherd guides his sheep, so My voice will guide you. You are My sheep, and My sheep know My voice.

I have shown you My great love for you by sending you My Son. My love is made complete in you when you love each other, even as I have loved you. You love because I first loved you. Now show the world My love is in you by keeping My commands and carrying out My will. Let others taste and see My goodness.

You are My light in this dark world. Do not hide yourself, but shine brightly for all to see.

 

Many Scripture references in this text also come from the book of 1 John and John 10.