Tag Archive: victory


DJ Martin (SingleFocus Ministry®)

glasseson-book1Preparing to accompany my dad for a short drive, I watched him turn to the right and then to the left. I saw him go to the kitchen and then back to the den. Then he turned and went down the hallway and returned to the den again. As he stood there, I inquired if he was ready to go. With a puzzled expression on his face he answered, “I was looking for my glasses.” I matter-of-factually replied, “They are on your nose.”

This is an event that is ageless. Everyone has observed or been in a similar situation whether it is sunglasses or readers: looking for the glasses and discover that they are on the head, around the neck or in the hands. Everyone has misplaced something and as they say when you’ve found it, “If it had been a snake it would have bitten you.” It was closer than realized.

Every Sunday morning we go to worship and faithfully assemble in the Sanctuary to seek the face of God and His presence, but during the week, too many of us have misplaced Him and left Him there. It’s as if (in our minds) His place and power is only in that edifice. As we face the battle of life, we think God can’t catch us when we fall unless we’re at the church house, so we come up with our own devices and search for solutions in the world.  Too many of us are satisfied to be victims instead of victors as if ‘victory in Jesus’ is only a praise song we sing on Sunday mornings.

Remember the two walking a seven mile journey back to their home (Luke 24)?  Jesus walked up to them and inquired what it was that they were discussing so intently. Surprised at the question, they told Him all about what had tragically transpired with Christ. Notice that angels did not blow trumpets, nor was there a choir or praise team anywhere around. Jesus merely came along side, and began to explain the truth of the Scriptures and reveal Himself through the words of the prophets. He didn’t wait until they got to the Sanctuary; He walked with them on the road as they made their long journey. Yet, they did not know that it was Him, until He broke the bread at their table. They were very sad, but their sorrow turned to gladness and discouragement turned to hope as He walked, talked, and dined with them. They were perplexed and dismayed, until they realized He had been with them all the time. When they realized who He was, they were so overjoyed that they ran back another seven miles to tell the other disciples that Christ was truly alive and had walked and talked with them. As they reported this, to their surprise, He appeared again to all of them.

Christ is not just in the Sanctuary. He is more than a song we sing or a sermon we hear on a Sunday morning. He is strength and security on a Monday morning. He is encouragement and enlightenment on a Wednesday afternoon. He is rest and refuge on a Friday evening. He is comfort and companion on a long day’s journey. He is truth and triumph, our up close and personal champion.

If Christ is not with you until you get to the Sanctuary, life is a defeated and depressive mystery.  The two travelers were not looking for Him along their journey, because all they knew was that He was crucified and buried after He died; and now the tomb was empty, and they didn’t know where His body was. But suddenly there He was, walking with them, closer than they realized.

Have you misplaced Him in your life? Where are you looking for Christ? Where are you looking for God? Do you get so distracted that you lose sight of Jesus? Do you leave Him at the Sanctuary or in the Sunday-School classroom?

Don’t just place Him as Lord of your Sunday mornings.  If you take time to meditate on His Word and what you’ve been taught, the Holy Spirit will reveal the truth of the Scriptures to you. I’m confident that you’ll find that He is closer than you realize. Placing Him as Lord of everyday means that you don’t have to wait until Sunday morning or when you get to heaven to experience freedom and victory.

“Christ with you” is more than a song on Sunday morning!

 

“Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”  Matthew 28:20

 “He hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”  Hebrews 13:5

That’s Today’s Single Focus…

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by DJ Martin (SingleFocus Ministry®)

National Cemetery  Grand Prairie, TX                                                                                                  D.J. Martin

Covered in armor to shield from enemies’ deadly fiery darts,

Head covered with metal crown to guard the clear thinking brow.

Armed with weapon to protect and defend,

There he lay on the ground.

Blood flowing down his arm and blood dripping, staining his brow,

For my liberty he died.

Not for my thanks did he nobly vow,

For what God freely gives he would fight against evil intent;

Freedom and liberty was well worth the cost.

So took he to the battlefield for victory, and for my freedom his life was lost.

Through the blood victory is won. I will not forget…

And then one greater than he gave his only son,

Equipped him with no armor to shield from enemies’ deadly fiery darts,

No metal crown to protect his righteous brow,

No weapon to protect and defend,

And there he lay with blood streaming down his side.

Beneath his crown of thorns blood dripping, staining his brow,

For my liberty he died.

Not for my thanks did he nobly vow,

For what God freely gives he would fight against evil intent;

Freedom and liberty was well worth the cost.

So took he to Golgotha’s hill for victory, and for my freedom his life was lost.

Through the blood victory is won. I will not forget…

I will not forget what price was paid.

I will not forget the one who shed his blood

My liberty to win.

I will not forget…

 

“I know it was the blood, I know it was the blood for me…”

 

That’s Today’s’ Single Focus…

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

DJ Martin (SingleFocus Ministry®)

In the Beginning:

woman handsWsnakeAdam said, “The woman whom You gave me, she gave me of the forbidden tree, and I did eat.” Then the LORD God said unto the woman, “What have you done?” And Eve said, “The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.” The LORD God said unto the serpent, “Because you have done this, you are cursed above all cattle, and every beast of the field; upon your belly you’ll go, and dust you’ll eat all your life:

And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; it shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.” Genesis 3:12-15

Seed of the Woman:

The angel of the Lord appeared unto Joseph in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, fear not to take Mary as your wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. And she shall bring forth a son, and you shall call His name JESUS: for He shall save His people from their sins.”

All this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, “Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call His name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.”

Then Joseph did as the angel of the Lord had said, and made Mary his wife: but, knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called His name JESUS.  Matthew 1:20-25

Bruising the Heel:

The chief priests and elders of the people took counsel against Jesus to put Him to death. When they had bound Him, they led Him away, and delivered Him to Pontius Pilate, the governor. When He was accused by the chief priests and elders, He said nothing.

Pilate went out unto the Jews, and said unto them, “I find in Him no fault at all.” John 18:38.

At this time they had a notorious prisoner, called Barabbas. Therefore, when they were gathered together, Pilate said unto them, “Whom do you want me to release unto you; Barabbas or Jesus who is called Christ? They said, “Barabbas” Then Pilate asked, “What shall I do then with Jesus who is called Christ? They all said, “Let Him be crucified.” And the governor said, “Why, what evil has He done?” But they cried out the more, saying, “Let Him be crucified.” Then Pilate took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, “I am innocent of the blood of this just person…

They crucified Him, and set up over His head His accusation written, THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS.

From the 6th hour there was darkness over all the land unto the 9th hour. And about the 9th hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, “My God, my God, why have You forsaken Me? Jesus, when He had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost. That very evening, a rich man of Arimathaea, named Joseph, who also was a disciple, went to Pilate, and begged for the body of Jesus. Joseph took the body, wrapped it in a clean linen cloth, and laid it in his own new tomb, hewed out of the rock: and he rolled a great stone over the door of the sepulcher, and left. Matthew 27:1-61

Bruising the Head:

The next day, the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate, saying, “Sir, we remember that deceiver, while He was yet alive said, “After 3 days I will rise again.” Command therefore that the sepulcher be made sure until the 3rd day, lest His disciples come by night, and steal Him away, and say unto the people, “He is risen from the dead…” So they went and made the sepulcher sure, sealing the stone, and setting guards. Matthew 27: 62-66

At the end of the Sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the 1st day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to the sepulcher. And, behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it. And the angel said unto the women, “Fear not: for I know that you seek Jesus, which was crucified. He is not here: for He is risen, as He said. Come; see the place where the Lord was laid.” And go quickly, and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead; and, behold, He goes before you into Galilee; there shall you see Him…” The women departed quickly from the sepulcher with fear and great joy; and did run to bring His disciples the news. As they went to tell His disciples, Jesus met them. And they came and held Him by the feet, and worshiped Him. Then said Jesus unto them, “Be not afraid: go tell My brethren that they go into Galilee, and there shall they see Me.” The 11 disciples went into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. Jesus came and spoke unto them, saying, “All power is given unto Me in heaven and in earth… lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.” Matthew 28:1-20

The End?

So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation. Hebrews 9:28

When I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. And He laid His right hand upon me, saying unto me, “Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am He that lives, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death. Revelation 1:17-18

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? 1Corinthians 15:55

That’s Today’s Single Focus…

ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

DJ Martin (SingleFocus Ministry®)

Have you ever headed out to a place you’ve never been before? No doubt the first thing you do is search or ask for directions. I have an invisible lady in my car that will give me directions when I ask. She talks me through the right turns and the left turns to get me to my destination. Sometimes I think I know where I’m going and tune her out. When I miss the turn or make a premature turn, she responds, “You have left the planned route, do you want me to update your route?”  Then she proceeds to get me back to where I made the wrong turn or simply redirects me back to the correct route that leads to my destination.

I recently took a trip to a place where I was promised that I would get wisdom and instruction. I had the invisible lady telling me how to get to where I would receive the promised wisdom, but I kept coming to streets thinking this was a better way to go. Because of that I was constantly being told that I had left the planned route. I was often confused, constantly driving down dead-end streets, but thankfully she mercifully calmly re-planned my route and patiently guided me to the place where I would receive that which I was promised.

The life of the children of God is like that. Unfortunately, we have a tendency to get off the planned route, because we think we know best; we decide to make a stop and make what we think is a more pleasurable detour; we don’t think that it’s a good idea to take that route; we decide to get there in our own way or the way our friends tell us we should; or various other reasons. Like the children of Israel who died in the wilderness, sometimes we go in circles when our destination is right there in plain sight.

We have access to the invisible voice of the Holy Spirit, but often don’t hear or we ignore that voice warning that we have left God’s planned route. So by the time we reach the destination, we are frustrated and have scrapes and dents: probably following those in front or stuck on the wrong path in the middle of a traffic jam of peer pressure and unable to take the off ramp for fear or intimidation. After being lost, when finally arriving at the destination, someone always asks, “Don’t you have a Navigation System?” Well the children of God do have the Holy Spirit, who is ready to route or update the route to the planned destination. But it will be very difficult to reach the destiny, if the voice of the Holy Spirit is not heard or is ignored.

“All the promises of God in Him are yea, and in Him Amen, unto the glory of God…”           2Corinthians 1:20

They who are in Christ are heirs and joint heirs of the promises. Because of the sacrificial blood of Christ, all who are in Christ can expect the good promises of God, however not all experience the promises of God (Deuteronomy 29). Sadly, not all reach their planned destiny. Truly God is faithful to all His promises, but you have to stay on the planned route.

So that I can get a general idea of where I’m going, I like to look at the map and study my route first, even though the invisible lady is going to be guiding me. ‘Assuring the Promises of God’ is a self-paced devotional that can help give you a general idea of the invisible Holy Spirit’s directions and planned route to your destination to receive the promises of God.

In this devotional, ‘Assuring the Promises of God’, not only will you discover how oversight of key concerns impact experiencing the promises of God, but you will also see how individual godly character impacts the community, from your personal household to the White House.

The devotional, ‘Assuring the Promises of God’, will encourage and motivate all, whether Single or Married, regardless of age or gender to stay on God’s planned route and pursue the will and purpose of God. If you listen to the Holy Spirit, through His Word, you will reach God’s planned destiny; thereby assuring the promises of God.

“And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” Galatians 3:29

That’s Today’s Single Focus…

Randolph Scott (1898-1987)

Randolph Scott (1898-1987) (Photo credit: Gonmi)

by DJ Martin (SingleFocus Ministry®)

While watching old black and white Westerns on the Classic Movie TV Channel, I noticed an interesting constant.  To be undoubtedly clear about the difference between right and wrong, throughout the entire movie, the good guys always wore white hats and the bad guys always wore black.

Whatever happened to the days when the good guys wore white hats and the bad guys wore black? Those noble heroes adorned their heads in white hats and never said a disparaging word. They were always encouraging and bold in their speech; declaring that the wicked shall obey laws of righteousness and will be defeated. They were champions of honor, honesty and righteousness. They were men of character and integrity. They were the heroes that both the wicked and righteous women desired and young boys emulated. Their stand for truth and justice and their fight for the downtrodden, abused and deceived made them seem 6 feet tall and handsome though physically they might not be at all. They were not wearing costumes or capes; the white hat was all that was needed to identify them as the good guys.   They didn’t believe that it was another person’s job to fight the wicked, though they knew it could cost their life if they failed.   They were champions without rings or streets named after them. They were not like ordinary other men, because they were optimistic, hopeful and trusted in God. They expected to be and were always victorious though no man would go with them. They read their Bible and prayed to their God.

On the other hand, you always knew the wicked guys, because they always wore black. Their heart was as black as the clothes they wore. They might be 6 feet tall and handsome in appearance, but deep inside their bulging chests lodged appallingly ugly hearts; and somehow the evil therein seeped through their pores. It was not so much what they said, but how they said it. Their tongue was always contorted; speaking lies camouflaged with flattering words and cleverly crafted verse accented with perfect smile and timely pitch. They crept in the night covered by darkness or in the day sheltered by the shadows; to carry out their sinister plans. They falsely accused the good guy while plotting to rob an entire town ‘blind’ and snickered at them huddled in their Church.   The cunning words and cleaver façade always made it difficult for their ‘mark’ to discern their evil intentions until they had been swindled or tied up and robbed.  They know how to woo the hero’s lady and make it seem as if the good guy is the bad guy, but we, the observers, always knew the difference, because the good guy wore the white hat and the bad guys wore black.

Nowadays it’s difficult, even for the observers, to discern the good guys from the bad. Good guys are wearing black hats, because curiously the dress of the wicked often becomes the latest fad. The bad guys are successfully infiltrating good situations and blending in with the good; always saying the right thing at the right time, going to Sunday School and to Church.  It is way too late when they have been discovered as cons and frauds who had merely painted their black hat white. They leave the victims of their deceit bruised and broken, stripped of their dignity and feeling quite stupid. Then, having conquered the foolish, the wicked verbally abuse them and freely oppress them.

Now, I’ve only seen it in the old black and white films made before my time, but I wonder what happened to the days when the good guys were imitated and men took offense if anything derogatory was said about their mom or their lady. What happened to the days when good guys always married good women who were pure inward and outwardly; and they stayed with them (her) through sickness and in health; always protecting their (her) reputation and dignity?   Now we hear even the “Sunday go to meeting” worshipers humming the lyrics of a womanizing, verbally degrading rappers’ hit song.  Didn’t it used to be a time when men and women loved each other pure and chaste from afar until they said “I do”? I think that’s what my grand momma said. In those old black & white Westerns, someone would inevitably say, “My word is my bond.” However, today, even the marriage covenant is treated like sweet-tasting chewing gum: discarded as soon as the flavor is gone.

Whatever happened to the time when men dressed for success and held their pants up with a secure belt, always mindful to keep their underwear a private affair?  Oddly enough, unfortunately, even the good guys so blend their lives with the lifestyle of the bad, that the good guys are silenced and accept ridicule hoping that they would find favor with the bad guys.  Even the good guys seem to only be willing to be our heroes if the price is right. Nowadays, their integrity, character and stand for righteousness seem to be merely an echo; as honesty and bravery is no longer fashionable.

What’s going on?  There seems to be no more obvious Martin Luthers, Martin Luther Kings, Tank Mans/Men or Chai Lings. There’s no discerning population and no unwavering men and women of principle are heard above a whisper (perhaps because every day they are being silenced in the halls of infanticide or the scourge of political correctness).  Immorality is lauded as ‘a right’ and righteousness is bullied into silence by leaders who dress in the white of integrity, but walk on a fence ready to sway whichever way the wind blows.  Maybe the only way we can bring back those days when good guys wore white hats and the bad guys wore black is that deep, inside each of us; we make sure that our inner man wears a white hat.  If each individual exhibits godly character of a hero, from the inside out, pretty soon they will impact someone else and before you know it; a whole town will be full of good guys who wear white hats and my children’s children imitate. Do I dare dream…?

I used to think that it was the way they dressed; or the way they wore their hair; or the way they showed up for Church every Sunday morning that made them the good guys: champions of righteousness, honesty and integrity. One day, alone in my apartment, suddenly I understood that anyone can act righteous to accomplish their selfish desires. It’s the ones who have transformed hearts and minds (Romans 12:2); they’re the ones that eat and breathe courage and integrity: true men and women of principle and character. Now I understand that except the Spirit of God (Romans 8:14, Act 4:31) comes over them, they don’t stand strong and fearlessly exhibit godliness. Actually they don’t look like Randolph Scott at all nor do they ride a white horse like the Lone Ranger, but they always seem to show up to encourage, pray, rescue and save at just the right time.  Even if the good guys wore white hats and were heroic and courageous, unless Christ is their Savior, they will never know true victory.  You see, it starts from the heart totally yielded to the ultimate champion, Jesus Christ.

The ‘born again’ (1 Peter 1:23) follower of Jesus Christ becomes more than an observer, but a Spirit-filled participator in the fight for truth and justice.  Filled with the Holy Spirit (Act 2:4), they will leap tall buildings, penetrate steel walls, rescue the captive and give insight to the blind faster than a speeding bullet when they pray. They might not wear white hats, but they are covered by the blood of Christ (Hebrews 9:14, Revelation 1:5) and cloaked in righteousness, honesty, integrity and unwavering truth and character.

Perhaps we don’t recognize the good guys, because we’re looking too high up. Actually the good guys tend to be in the trenches, not in comfortable hilltop mansions. They’re the ones who back you up when you’re troubled. They are the passersby who run into a burning building to rescue you from the flames. They’re the ones who pray for you when you’re struggling. They’re the ones who empty their pockets so that you are fed though you’re a stranger. They are humble and unassuming men and women who comfort and encourage. Though they don’t even know your name, they mercifully hold your hand or wipe the tears from your eyes when, in your life, tragedy has struck. When you stumble, rather than condemn or judge you, they extend their hand of mercy to help you up.   Amazingly when there is a need, they are always showing up in the nick of time and do not require payment from you; not one dime. The good guys don’t always look strong and courageous. They might wear uniforms, but most times not. The good guys could be your neighbor or yourself who speed to rescue without hesitation; all because someone needs help. They stand at the ready to show captives the path to freedom and break the chains that bind. They sound the alarm when you draw near to danger and they don’t stand around waiting for you to show some kind of gratitude.  They may not wear white hats, but they are up close and personal champions; men and women of character and integrity who wear invisible helmets of salvation (Ephesians 6:17) and breastplates of righteousness (Isaiah 59:17).

I noticed another thing that was common in those movies. In the moment of truth, the good guy always had to fight the battle by himself, because the people who needed to be rescued were intimidated by the wicked and believed deceiving words which rendered them helplessly shackled by the spirit of fear (2 Timothy 1:7). They thought that it was best to try to make the wicked happy and then they would be left alone (“evil prevails when good men do nothing”). It speaks to a truth of life: real heroes are discerning and are a rare commodity specially designed and providentially dispatched by God. Though the wicked is cunning and cleverly disguised, somehow the surrendered soul totally yielded to Jesus Christ, rightly discerns the righteous from the wicked, whether or not the bad or the good guys wore white hats.

Then you shall again discern between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not…” (NKJV)  Malachi 3:18

That’s Today’s Single Focus…

by DJ Martin (SingleFocus Ministry®)

The murderer rising with the light killeth the poor and needy, and in the night is as a thiefJob 24:14

These are the days of frequent reports of: uncovered terrorist plots; drug cartel killings; nations warring and killing one another; and government methodically stealing citizens’ rights through unjust laws. There isn’t a neighborhood without some kind of security measure: burglar bars, security systems, security/police patrol or security dogs to protect against thieves who strike at any time day or night. We’ve got deadly domestic violence; endemic divorces; billion dollar baby killing (infanticide) industries; and deadly addictions that put young people behind bars or 6 feet deep, destroying parents’ hope of a great future for their children. That’s the national statistics of ‘steal, kill and destroy’, but there is a more up-close and personal battle that is waging. If we win this battle then hopefully the national statistics should change for the better.

“If the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?”  1 Corinthians 14:8

Jesus described the adversary (the devil) as a liar, thief, killer and destroyer (John 8:44, John 10:10). The fact is that we are in a personal battle; a spiritual warfare (Ephesians 6:12); and we need to be equipped for the battle.  We also need to know the weapons and battle strategy of our enemy (Ephesians 6:11-17). In order to fight the good fight, we must be able to recognize him when he appears as a “wolf in sheep clothing (Matthew 7:15).”

Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it. John 8:44

One of the devil’s tactics was first displayed in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:1-7). That is the tactic of altering focus from the commitment to obey God. Also, he changes focus from the grace of God’s manifold blessings to the focus on the one thing that we do not possess, but we think we want. Adam and Eve were conned with deceiving words and the same tactic will be tried on the body of Christ, both individually and collectively.

You’ve heard the expression; “all that glitters ain’t gold.” Just because it looks good, doesn’t mean that it is good. Have you ever had a Lexus driver try to sell you a Pacer? Has a stallion rider ever tried to sell you a donkey? If these things are so good then why isn’t the seller investing in it himself? It’s like the President trying to sell you an economy car and He rides in a limousine or a jet plane every day. If it’s all that great, then why is the seller not an owner too?  We must be careful to remember that our lifestyle is a faith walk not an emotional walk. Get back in focus! Don’t let the adversary’s lies steal your joy and destroy your confidence in God’s faithfulness to supply all your needs and not deny you any good thing. Focus on the abundance God has already given you. Delight yourself in Him (Psalm 37:4) and He will give you the desires of your heart and more!

Don’t be deceived! Colossians 2:8

The deceiving spirit will use tactics such as trouble on your job: the boss treating you unfairly; co-workers lying and/or spying on you; etc. You begin to focus on the unfairness of it all: how you should have gotten that promotion or how you can get even; how you can quit… “Danger, Danger!” The deceiver will speak cunning and enticing words to get your concentration on one closed-door while they steal all that you possess in your many open doors. Your focus is being destroyed. You have lost focus on the fact that God supplies all your needs and that you are an ambassador for Christ whose goal is to cause others to seek Christ as their personal Savior.

Don’t lose focus!! (Philippians 3:14)

You may be happy at your job: coworkers are praising you, enticing you; and you are making a lot of money, and the more overtime you work, the more money you can make. Now you are too tired to go to Midweek Bible Study and Prayer Meeting or even too tired to go to Sunday Morning Worship. You are never home in time for family breakfast or dinner; and you don’t make PTA meeting, etc. “Danger, Danger!” Your focus is being destroyed! You have lost focus on the fact that you wanted a good job to provide for your family the way God would have you do in the way God would have you to. Your job is your resource to provide for your family as you do the work God has called you to.

Watch and pray that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. Matthew 26:41

lieKillStealDivorce is rampant. The adversary is killing the family network which eventually leads to ultimate destruction of a nation. Like shooting ducks at an amusement park, men are succumbing to temptation and walking away from wife and children. In Tyler Perry’s movie ‘Why Did I Get Married Too?’ the marriage counselor announced that she and her husband were divorcing. As they talked with their divorce lawyers, she kept saying over and over “It’s going to be okay. We love each other.” Huh! Isn’t that an oxymoron? There’s got to be a lie in there somewhere! Their close friend commented; “14 years you’ve been with this woman, there’s gotta be something in them 14 years’ that’s worth fighting for! It’s baffling how we reconcile our differences in order to stay on a job for 30 years despite the difficult issues: awful boss; low wages; and backstabbing co-workers; etc.  We refuse to allow the devil to steal our job, but we give up and allow him to deceive, steal, kill and destroy a family we’ve invested in and committed to for so many years…

God reconciled with us who were wretched sinners unworthy of anyone’s mercy, don’t you think that He can help reconcile differences with your family? Perhaps your focus has been so deceptively altered that you are willingly “throwing the fight.”

There is a way which seems right unto a man, but the ends thereof are the ways of death.           Proverbs 14:12

This is indeed an adulterous generation (Mark 8:38). Recently it was reported that 48% of first births are outside of marriage. Sometimes the parents live together without making wedding vows, but eventually sever the relationship.  I worked with a single lady who constantly complained that her physical clock was running out. She was focused on world standards and not the awesome ability and sovereignty of God. The Christian life is not based on earthly varying ‘politically-correct’ absolutes, but on God’s immutable truth, omniscience and ability to do exceedingly more than we can ask or think (Ephesians 3:20).

“Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” 2 Timothy 2:15

Get back to the basics of Bible Study and Prayer so that you are equipped for the battle.  Search the scriptures and see how the adversary consistently attacks and tempts the saints. Be on guard. Pray, and again I say, “PRAY (1 Timothy 5:17)!” Study and pray so that you can discern both good and evil. Remind yourself often of what your focus should be. Remind yourself of the will and work of God (John 4:34). Let God help you fight. Let God exalt you. God is the source of your victory: physically, financially and relational.

Fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear Him which is able to destroy both soul and body … Matthew 10:28

Life is a ‘spiritual battle’ that gets physical. The enemy is so cunning and cleverly deceptive, how can we win this heated battle???

God already made preparation for His own to win. In a Garden, late in the night, while He wept and anguished (sweat like blood upon His brow), they plotted the betrayal, capture and killing of Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God. As the hour grew near, He momentarily wished that the ‘bitter cup’ be removed (Mark 14:36), but His whole being was about the ‘will of the Father’. He also knew that if He did not go the distance, we would be defeated and we would be perpetually killed and destroyed as the adversary would have stolen our right to receive eternal life and right relationship with the Father and deny us victory. They stole Him away from the Garden and took Him secretly from court to court, falsely accusing Him, and then they stripped Him, ridiculed Him and beat Him, destroying His priestly appearance (Isaiah 53:2). Then they unjustly led Him, bruised and bleeding, up to Golgotha Hill, nailed Him to a cross and killed Him. After He died, they took Him down from the cross and laid Him in a borrowed tomb. No one is buried in a borrowed tomb, but Jesus Christ was not ordinary, because on the third day angels set upon the stone, which had covered the tomb, and reported to the women disciples that Jesus Christ had risen from the dead. Over 500 witnesses saw Him before He ascended into Heaven on a cloud. Now He is seated on the right hand of the Father interceding on our behalf and ‘ALL’ things are under His feet (Ephesians 1:22). Jesus Christ has the victory waiting to give it to all who would receive it!

Thanks be to God, which gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:57

Surely Christ would not willingly go through all that agony only to allow us to be defeated and destroyed! There isn’t a sin that He cannot forgive. There isn’t a theft that He cannot recover. There isn’t a death that He cannot resurrect. There isn’t a battle that He cannot win. Whatever you’re going through, Jesus Christ will equip you to win. If you make Him LORD of your life, He will even fight your battle. Read His word. You will find that someone in the Bible has already walked a path like yours and God gave them the victory. He will give you victory also, if you are willing. Trust in God (John 14). As Apostle Paul said, “Put on your armor and then STAND…” (Ephesians 6:13-14).

 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”  Jesus Christ (John 10:10)

That’s Today’s Single Focus…

by DJ Martin (SingleFocus Ministry®)

I believe that this is God’s resolve for us. I’ll let Him speak in His ownHappy New Year! Words…

“For My people are foolish, they have not known Me. They are silly children, and they have no understanding. They are wise to do evil, But to do good they have no knowledge.” Jeremiah 4:22

 “Forget not My law; but let your heart Keep My commandments:  Proverbs 3:1

For length of days and long life and peace they will add to you. “

  1. “Let not mercy and truth leave you;
  2. Write them deep within your heart”   Proverbs 3:3
  3. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And
  4. Lean not on your own understanding; Proverbs 3:5
  5. In all your ways acknowledge Him,

And He shall direct* your paths.” Proverbs 3:6

  1. “Do not be wise in your own eyes;
  2. Fear the LORD and
  3. Depart from evil.” Proverbs 3:7
  4. Do not envy the oppressor, And choose none of his ways; Proverbs 3:31

Keep sound wisdom and discretion: Proverbs 3:21

“For the perverse person is an abomination to the LORD, but His secret counsel is with the upright.” Proverbs 3:32

“The wise shall inherit glory, but shame shall be the legacy of fools.” Proverbs 3:35foolish

“A fool’s talk brings a rod to his back, but the lips of the wise protect them.” Proverbs 14:3

“The fear of the LORD [is] the beginning of knowledge: [but] fools despise wisdom and instruction.”       Proverbs 1:7

“He that walks with wise [men] shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed.”  Proverbs 13:20

“Judgments are prepared for scorners and stripes for the back of fools.”  Proverbs 19:29

“The heart of him that hath understanding seeks knowledge: but the mouth of fools feeds on foolishness.”  Proverbs 15:14

Therefore:

  1. “incline your ear unto wisdom, [and]
  2. apply your heart to understanding” Proverbs 2:2
  3. “Get wisdom!
  4.  Get understanding!
  5. Do not forget, nor turn away from the words of My mouth.”  Proverbs 4:5

“Wisdom [is] the principal thing; [therefore]

  1. get wisdom: and
  2. With all thy getting get understanding.”  Proverbs 4:7
  3. “Take firm hold of instruction, do not let go; Keep her, for she is your life.” Proverbs 4:13

And:

  1. Do not enter the path of the wicked, And
  2. Do not walk in the way of evil.”  Proverbs 4:14
  3. “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom;
  4. teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,
  5. Singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” Colossians 3:16
  6. “Walk in wisdom” Colossians 4:5

“Man shall

  1. not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God” Matthew 4:4

“Who [is] a wise man and endued with knowledge among you?

  1. Let him show out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.” James 3:13

“That we [from now on]

  1. Be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, [and] cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive”  Ephesians 4:14

It seems as if the 21st century ushered in a heavy cloud of cunning men who so heavily crafted their words that foolishness and perversion of the Word of God is believed and espoused by many, even those called by His name. Evil men so cleverly disguise their words that it is difficult to distinguish sound doctrine from foolishness. Let us resolve to hide the word of God in our hearts so that we can discern wisdom from foolishness. Let us get wisdom and understanding. May this New Year give us the resolve to seek wisdom from God with all diligence and strength like we pursue riches. Let us resolve to pursue wisdom and understanding as if it were more precious than gold or diamonds, because it is (Proverbs 8:11)!

May this New Year bring: wisdom and understanding so that we will not be the blunt of the devil’s cruel comedy routine and be counted among the wicked and foolish by God.

In this New Year, let us resolve to experience ever-increasing victory because we lean not to our own understanding; in all our ways we acknowledge God; and fervently read His word aggressively seeking “To know wisdom and instruction; to perceive the words of understanding (Proverbs 1:2).”

“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that gives to all [men] liberally, and scolded not; and it shall be given him.” James 1:5

That’s Todays’ Single Focus…

Tired of being the Punch Line?

by DJ Martin (SingleFocus Ministry®)

They say that true life is a comedy…  But, when will we get tired of being the punch line in the devil’s joke?  I mean, he is going around causing all kinds of havoc in relationships and laughing all the way to heaven, telling the joke to God (Job 1:6) and guess what…we’re the punch line of each joke (Job 1:11).  For example: I was idealistic, determined to financially promote the kingdom of God. I got to working overtime, and my ideals became a joke in the devil’s comedy routine.  I forgot the reason and purpose and just worked for the money.  At the end of the year I found out that I supported the government more than myself.  And I can’t say that the kingdom received any financial benefit. The joke wasn’t on me… My selfishness, greed, self-gratification and my lack of trust in God was the story and I was the punch line.

In the beginning God officiated the marriage of Adam and Eve (Gen 2:24). Nowadays some men are telling the ladies, “Lets live together first.”  That’s the fad today.  The world has all kinds of excuses for ‘shacking’ instead of marriage.  You’re led to believe that it is temporary, but how long has it been now?  Have you set the date yet?  Only heaven knows who you could be married to by now… The joke is not on you… It’s your world view; your selfishness; your self-gratification; your lack of trust in God, His love and His will that is the punch line of the devil’s cruel joke.

God said, “be fruitful and multiply (Gen 1:28).”  Some years ago some people determined to get rid of as many Black American babies as possible through wholesale abortion (genocide).  Teenagers are having premarital sex, abortionists are living in mansions and the teenagers’ adult lives have become shaky, because of possible side effects from abortion: emotional stress, barrenness, cervical cancer, breast cancer, and death… ‘Pro-choice’ marketing helps them to feel comfortable and you can’t watch anything on secular TV without viewing sexually suggestive commercials. Even the kids’ TV sitcoms subtly promote promiscuity. There are other minority groups out numbering Black Americans, because too many are choosing to behave immoral and consequently participate in abortion (there have been approximately 13 million Black American babies aborted since 1973 according to the U.S. Center for Disease Control). There are some church elders recommending abortion and there is government support (Planned Parenthood) paying for it. The joke is not on these young women… It is their naivety, self-centeredness; self-gratification; recklessness; maneuverability; vulnerability; poor self-esteem; disobedience and lack of trust in their parents’ sound advice; and their lack of trust in God, His love and His will that is the punch line in the devil’s cruel comedy routine.

God hates divorce (Malachi 2:16). Therefore, He has the Bible full of relational wisdom and self-growth counsel from Genesis to Revelation.  However, all kinds of turmoil are being stirred up in marriages: adultery, financial struggles… high stress situations!  Sometimes it is a matter of un-forgiveness; selfishness and pride; and lack of discipline or self-control. It probably could be remedied by giving God sovereignty in your life; studying individually and collectively the word of God and applying it in your relationship. Sometimes couples find themselves in a heated argument about dinner, discipline of children, a new purchase, a relative coming to visit, scrambling the eggs or boiling the eggs… I mean, have you ever stepped back and looked at what you’re arguing about? But then there is always someone who comes along who understands you better than your spouse. Stop! Don’t fall for that! When some person of the opposite sex comes at you when there is conflict in your marriage, that’s a clear sign that you are about to become the punch line in the devil’s comedy routine.  You’re not the joke, but your selfishness and pride (it’s my way or the highway attitude); your unwillingness to forgive (which God requires before He hears our prayers) and/or your self-centeredness (instead of focusing on the will of God) is the punch line in the devil’s cruel comedy routine.

I have too many family, friends and acquaintances whose lives and relationships are the punch lines of the devil’s cruel comedy routine.  Christ made the ultimate sacrifice and paid the price because, it is the will of God that no man parish (2 Peter 3:9).  He extends love, grace and mercy to each of us each and every day.  Husbands are to love their wives as Christ loves the church (Ephesians 5:25).  That’s seeking the will of God, then sacrificing for her good, forgiving and showing grace and mercy. Wives are to submit to their husbands as unto the Lord (Ephesians 5:22).  Christ submitted to God the Father.  It is more than about you and your spouse’s personal preferences. Children are to obey their parents in the Lord (Ephesians 6:1).  We all are to love our neighbor as ourselves. That’s seeking their good and not their harm. It must start with the focus on the sovereignty and will of God.  After His extraordinary sacrifice and obedient submissiveness to God’s will by dying on a cross, Christ arose from the dead in power and victory.  All things are under His feet (1 Corinthians 15:27).  We may be the unsuspecting punch line, but God is not mocked (Galatians 6:7). We who are in Christ are victorious in Christ (1 Corinthians 15:57).  Your life story is written with a happy ever after ending (Romans 8:37).  But, if you are not discerning, you will find yourself continuously being the punch line in the devil’s cruel comedy routine.

Notwithstanding, not all is a result of selfishness, but some is due to wickedness at the hands of evil people who live to prey on the innocent, undiscerning and vulnerable. Victims can be assured that “vengeance is mine” says the Lord (Romans 12:19). The Apostle Paul said that God would eventually make the disobedient believe a lie and He will turn them over to a reprobate mind (Romans 1:28).  You’ve seen adulterous Pastors teach the word, shout and go on like nothing is wrong, because they don’t know that the Spirit has left them.  You’ve witnessed the immoral or addicted sing or play the piano every Sunday Morning.  They spout the word of God eloquently and get all emotional as they sing or play the keyboard, but they have no idea that the Holy Spirit has left them (Judges 16:20), because they continue to live the worldly lifestyle and they haven’t been ‘zapped’ by God.  They have been given over to the devil as a punch line in his cruel comedy routine!

I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of being the punch line in the devil’s cruel comedy routine. This new year, let’s resolve to be alert and discerning.  Let’s obediently prioritize and honor our commitment to God and in all our ways acknowledge Him (Proverbs 3:6). In every temptation or turmoil, let’s pray for discernment to know whether it is a test from God or a temptation from the devil (James 1:1-15).  Whichever it is, let’s resolve to handle the situation the way God would have us to.  Let’s pray for His guidance and direction; study His word so that we can handle any relationship the way He teaches; and trust Him for the victory (John 16:33)! Let’s put on the whole armor of God (Ephesians 6:11); thank Him for the victory by faith; and apply His word at all times. Sometimes you have to go the second mile (Matthew 5:41): forgive (seven times seventy) even when it seems unforgivable (Matthew 18:22); show grace and mercy as Christ has shown to us; love the way Christ loved us (John 14); and focus on the promised victory (Romans 8:37) even though it looks like imminent defeat.  We must resolve to have faith in God and establish that God’s way is better than the writer of Soap Operas; soft porn movies; TV sitcoms; politicians, champions of ungodly causes or doctrines of demons (1 Timothy 4:1).  And finally, let us resolve to no longer allow our selfishness, greed, self-gratification, disregard for the will of God, un-forgiveness, and our pride to become the punch line in the devil’s cruel comedy routine.  In Christ we are victorious and that’s no joke!

 For whatsoever is born of God overcomes the world: and this is the victory that overcomes the world, [even] our faith.”1 John 5:4

That’s Todays’ Single Focus…

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