Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Day 13

Exodus 33:15-16 NLT Then Moses said, “If you don’t personally go with us, don’t make us leave this place. How will anyone know that you look favorably on me—on me and on your people—if you don’t go with us? For your presence among us sets your people and me apart from all other people on the earth.”

On several occasions, I have been asked, "which day of your book resonates with you the most?" Or "What is your favorite day?"

My answer "Day 13 - Who's going with me?"

When I stepped out on faith and began to take steps to complete and publish my first book, I wanted everyone to be just as excited as I was that I was being obedient and doing what God laid upon my heart to do.  However, everyone was not excited and I didn't share the visions regarding my book with everyone in my life. I didn't want the doubt or the 'non-excitement' of others to damage my spirit.  I had to protect what God had given me.

It is human nature to want the love and support of everyone around you when you're stepping out to complete any major accomplishment. If you do not receive that, I'm here to encourage you and let you know that it doesn't matter when you're doing what you have been called to do. When you are walking in the will of God, He will give you provision and place people in your life to help you along the way.  All you have to do is be obedient.

As you begin or continue to walk in faith to do what you have been called to do, don't worry about who will be walking alongside you. God already has a plan in place. Do not miss your moment of opportunity to be all that God has called you to be because you're worried about who is with you. God is with you and that's what matters most! Stay in faith!

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Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Pray, Guard, Protect

Nehemiah 4:9 NLT "But we prayed to our God and guarded the city day and night to protect ourselves."

In Nehemiah 4, Nehemiah discusses how their enemies opposed them rebuilding the wall of Jerusalem. Their enemies were disgusted with them continuing on with what God called them to do in the midst of how everything looked.  Nehemiah and the rest of God's people who were committed to rebuilding were scoffed at and talked about as they were doing their work.  If you refer to verse 9, our meditation verse, you will see Nehemiah and his team's response.  They prayed and guarded the city to protect themselves and the work that they were committed to.

When you're committed to doing the will of God, the enemy is going to be in your ear--whispering (sometimes shouting) about what you cannot do, will not accomplish, shouldn't do, or have no business doing. Since you know this: Be ready! Arm yourself with the word of God to remind yourself of why you're doing it and who you're doing it for!  Nehemiah took very important steps that we should all take:

1. PRAY!!! Do not neglect your time alone with God praying and seeking guidance.  This is a time of refreshing and spiritual renewal and empowerment.

2. Be on Guard! Guard the dream/vision that God has placed in your heart and don't allow anyone to stop you from accomplishing it!

3. Protect yourself! How? Protect yourself by equipping yourself with God's truth. Fight the enemy with the word of God--what you already know to be true!

Additional scripture reading: Nehemiah 4

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Paper vs. Peach Pie

Great morning! Today I am sharing a post written by a dear friend of mine. I was encouraged as I read it and I hope that you are too!

I’ve entertained countless books on how to “connect with your inner-self, identify your purpose, and write your vision”. I have even taken many “1st steps" by writing down my vision and making it plain. However, in many areas, that “1st step” has been my last step; only to find myself statuesquely suspended in a mid "2nd step” pose. Recently, I asked myself, “does that make me a visionary?”. The answer came to me like this, “does writing down the recipe for homemade peach pie make it so? Can I take just the words, eat them, and it taste just like when mama baked it?” Just imagine, I would be the next big inventor on “Shark Tank”, showcasing my lucrative creation, a pen with a fork conveniently attached… Unfortunately, that is not the case.
Unless I enjoy the taste of ink and paper, I need to take the next step(s). Dreams and visions written in journals, shared in conversation, and/or etched in our thoughts are just recipes. Visionaries are those who recognize the substance of their visions and press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus (Phil 3:14).  They choose to live with intention and purpose; transforming their recipes into something, sustaining, edifying, and tangible.
I was contemplating over the lives of many Visionaries who have blessed this earth with their lives, and I noted a common thread among them all. I believe we are all born with a vision and a purpose. A Visionary is simply someone who connects with their God given vision and chooses to give it life. From my survey, a Visionary encompasses the following:
·         Courage. Joshua (Joshua 1:1-7) and David (1 Samuel 17:33-37) are pristine examples of courage being exercised and the vision coming to pass.
·         Say “NO” when necessary.  Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego (Daniel 3:8-18) risked their lives when declaring they would NOT worship Nebuchadezzars idol. Their brave “NO” was met by God’s bold “YES” in the fiery furnace, further confirming that no weapon formed against you shall prosper (Isaiah 54:17).
·         Diligence. Noah (Genesis 6:11-14, 22) was given a vision and brought it to life. His diligence and obedience afforded the survival of humanity during the great flood. What if he had just wrote down the metrics and instructions, but chose not to build the ark?
·         Compassion for something beyond yourself. Jesus Christ (Luke 22:42-44) is the epitome of Compassion and Love. Without His compassion for you, he would not have had the wherewithal to endure the cross for our sins.
Are you a Visionary? Read through your journals, listen to your most recent conversations, and take inventory of your thoughts… If your visions are arrested in your journals, conversations, and thoughts, there lies a strong possibility that you’re operating far below your Visionary Potential. Fortunately, as long as you’re breathing, the tools to become a Visionary are still welling within you. You can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens you (Phil 4:13). Choose to Take Action beyond your "1st step"! The majority of the time, our visions and dreams have a reach far beyond ourselves... Your vision, once developed and exercised, may be the solution to a greater problem or need in the life of another. During moments of self- doubt, fear, or uncertainty, please ask yourself, "do I prefer the taste of paper or peach pie?" The decision is yours
Proudly eating my Peach Pie,
Tiera Gilder

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Not Your Battle

Great morning! I'm working on my second book- a one year devotional! I'm so excited to share with you all that God has been sharing with me during my personal study time.  Today I'd like to share with you a page from my upcoming book! The subtitle is "365 days in your presence!" May this devotional bless and encourage you!

2 Chronicles 20:15 NLT He said, “Listen, all you people of Judah and Jerusalem! Listen, King Jehoshaphat! This is what the Lord says: Do not be afraid! Don’t be discouraged by this mighty army, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.

The battle that you and I fight each day is a spiritual battle not one of flesh and blood.  It is important that you understand and believe this biblical truth.

In today’s key verse, the Lord spoke through Jahaziel to the people of Judah and Jerusalem in response to their prayers and fasting. The word from the Lord is this: the battle is not yours to fight. In fact, all you have to do is stand still and watch the Lord’s victory. He is with you, don’t be afraid. Believe in God and His word and you will succeed! If you continue reading, you will find that is exactly what happened! They didn’t have to fight. They Lord fought their battle for them!

Each day that you wake, you have a choice to make: believe in God’s word or not. This may not always be easy but this is exactly when your faith is tested: at that moment when you’ve been praying and fasting for something and all hell seems to be breaking loose. Even still, the battle isn’t yours to fight. Equip yourself with the word of God, stand firm, praise Him, believe in Him and His word and watch what happens.

Prayer for Today: Heavenly Father, you are so awesome and mighty in power. Help me to remember daily that the battle is not mine but yours and to trust that you already have the victory! Sometimes this can be a challenge for me but I give up my doubt and choose to replace it with faith in you and your Word.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Additional scripture readings: 2 Chronicles 20:1-29; Ephesians 6:10-18; 2 Corinthians 10:4