The Heart of Homemaking

So I just want to take a minute to encourage those of you who also stay home because I know what it’s like to get weary in well doing. When we’re so caught up in the mundane things, it’s easy to lose sight of what we’re truly doing. There have been plenty of times that I’ve felt like my life had no value because I couldn’t see how cooking and cleaning (and decorating my house!) bared any fruit for the kingdom. But I’m here to remind you that we as wives and mothers (or just women in general), we may be the heart of the home but the heart of Homemaking is God’s. Yes, homemaking is His desire for us because if we can just be honest, our desires are (or were) to be out in this world making a name for ourselves. But contrary to what society may believe, it is a GREAT work raising arrows and creating an environment that fosters godliness.

Don’t let the world (or your own carnal mind!) corrupt your perspective on Homemaking. Remember that this world despises Jesus Christ, men and apparently children (with all of this abortion stuff)! When we’re abiding in the Lord our presence is light in the darkness and our homes can be a peaceful place in the chaos. In addition, Homemaking has eternal value. So just keep working wholeheartedly as unto the Lord unnoticed (and sometimes even unappreciated!) knowing that your reward will be in heaven..

You are SO precious girl! May the Lord preserve your heart and mind in Jesus Christ.

Your sister,

Brandi Collins

20190304_183656

Here’s to cleaning the kitchen, again.

♥♥

Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies. The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil. She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life. She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands. She is like the merchants’ ships; she bringeth her food from afar. She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens. She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard. She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms. She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night. She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff. She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy. She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet. She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple. Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land. She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant. Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come. She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness. She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her. Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all. Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised. Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.” (Proverbs 31:10-31)

Being a Joyful Homemaker

Let me just start off by saying that I LOVE being a wife. I LOVE being a mother, and I am VERY passionate about Homemaking. But the truth is.. I am NOT always “happy”! It’s like I love serving my little family but sometimes I find myself irritable (impatient), frustrated and just flat out overwhelmed. It’s easy to get lost in the day to day routines but we have to keep our eyes on Jesus. Because when we begin to lose sight of why we’re truly doing this, our hearts will become achy and sinful. So, with all that being said, I just want to share a few things that I do in order to remain joyful.

1. I work wholeheartedly as unto the Lord.

Whatever you do [whatever your task may be], work from the soul [that is, put in your very best effort], as [something done] for the Lord and not for men, knowing [with all certainty] that it is from the Lord [not from men] that you will receive the inheritance which is your [greatest] reward. It is the Lord Christ whom you [actually] serve. For he who does wrong will be punished for his wrongdoing, and [with God] there is no partiality [no special treatment based on a person’s position in life].” (Colossians 3:23-25, AMP)

In a previous post I mentioned how the heart of Homemaking was God’s. And it’s true, because before I came to the Lord my heart was in something else (work!). And yes, there are a lot stay at home wives and mothers of the world but unless we’re truly serving the Lord our motives stem from pride and/or idolatry. So anyway, whenever I find myself in a funk or feeling worthless, I just remind myself that being a Homemaker is God’s will.  The joy of the Lord is truly my strength because at the end of the day, I just want to be acceptable and pleasing to Him.

2. I guard my heart.

That means I’ll cut off anything (or anyone!) that disrupts my peace. And I’m very cautious of social media. I used to be very double minded. I used to covet and fret over evil doers. So trust me, if you’re sitting around watching worldly women build their empires, you’re asking for it. You need to unfollow these unbelievers (immediately!) and start “following” Jesus!

3. I count (and recount!) my blessings.

Sometimes I just look around my house and thank God for a bunch of healthy, laughing children and a fine man that loves me and Him. I remember praying for the things that I despise (or take for granted) now. So learn to live in the moment. Gratefulness combats comparison and discontentment.

I could go on but I want to prove everything I suggest in my own life first. So, I hope that you take these things into consideration and stop letting the world steal your peace and joy in Homemaking.

Much love,

Brandi Collins

IMG_0129

If you’re interested, I also blogged on what to do when staying home becomes boring and/or stressful!

♥♥

Do you truly love God?

And so the Lord says, “These people SAY they are mine. They honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. And their worship of me is nothing but man-made rules learned by rote.” (Isaiah 29:13, NLT)

Now this post is going to be a little different because I’m just going to let us examine our own selves in light of the scriptures. But before I leave you with a few scriptures to consider, I just want to bring something very important to your attention.

Idolatry is a work of the flesh..

Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,  Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.” (Galatians 5:19-21)

So just because you go to church (and are all up the pastor and his family’s butt!) doesn’t mean that you love God. The flesh wants to worship something (and to be entertained!). So you could just be worshiping the bible and the idea of Jesus Christ in vain. Jesus told us that God is spirit, and that true worshipers will worship Him in spirit and in truth. This is why we have so many false believers. Because we can not love or worship God in the flesh (with our carnal minds and physical senses).

But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.” (John 4:23-24)

A lot of people have deceived themselves into believing that they love God because they’re all in their emotions and they FEEL like they do. But according to Jesus Christ, we truly love him and his Father when we willingly obey their commands.

So, here’s a few scriptures to consider. Let us take heed and let us truly examine ourselves.

With nothing but love,

Brandi

As we arise each morning, let us determine to respond with love and kindness to whatever might come our way. (1)

 

(John 14:21-24) “Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them. Judas (not Judas Iscariot, but the other disciple with that name) said to him, ‘Lord, why are you going to reveal yourself only to us and not to the world at large?’ Jesus replied, “All who love me will do what I say. My Father will love them, and we will come and make our home with each of them. Anyone who doesn’t love me will not obey me. And remember, my words are not my own. What I am telling you is from the Father who sent me.”

(1 John 4:20) “If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a fellow believer, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see?”

(1 John 5:1-5) “Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has become a child of God. And everyone who loves the Father loves his children, too. We know we love God’s children if we love God and obey his commandments. Loving God means keeping his commandments, and his commandments are not burdensome. For every child of God defeats this evil world, and we achieve this victory through our faith. And who can win this battle against the world? Only those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God.”  

(1 John 2:15-17) Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.” (1 John 2:15-17)

(John 15:9-14) “I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.  You are my friends if you do what I command.

(Luke 9:23-26) “And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save it. For what is a man advantaged, if he gain the whole world, and lose himself, or be cast away? For whosoever shall be ashamed of me and of my words, of him shall the Son of man be ashamed, when he shall come in his own glory, and in his Father’s, and of the holy angels.”

(1 John 4:17) “Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.” 

(James 1:22-25) “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.” (James 1:22-25)

♥♥

How to Teach our young Daughters about Modesty

 

20190609_092158_HDR (1)

Me and my 8 year old daughter, Janelle.

Now this post isn’t going to be that long because truly teaching our daughters how to embrace godly femininity is really only taught by (or through) being. So with that being said, I’m just going to share a few things to keep in mind as we foster their modesty.

1.  Remember that Modesty is about Character, not clothing.

A lot of professing Christian women believe that covering themselves up is legalism and/or bondage. But those of us who are truly walking with the Lord know that God is not pleased with any of this SELFishness or nakedness. We KNOW, that there is (and will always be!) a CLEAR distinguish between the women of this world and the women who are in Christ. Just the simple fact that these women still think that it’s okay to emulate celebrities (or other worldly women on social media) shows that they do not have the mind of Christ, and that they aren’t abiding in his Spirit. As Christians, we want to be conformed to the righteousness of God (which is found in Christ). And that transformation starts from the INSIDE out.

“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” (Romans 12:1-2)

2. Again, remember that we teach directly (and  indirectly) by being.

When we ARE modest (humble AND SUBMISSIVE) at heart, we won’t (and eventually won’t even desire to..because yes, it is a process!) dress OR BEHAVE in ways that are indecent or improper (for those professing godliness). This includes wearing revealing things that emphasize our figures, and draw insecurity out of other women and/or sexual attraction from men (and unfortunately other women as well). When we are being (as in living) modest, it’s like our daughters will inevitably inherit or derive those qualities (if we’re raising them).

 The just man walketh in his integrity: his children are blessed after him.”            (Proverbs 20:7)

3. Have fun (meaning delight in the things of the Lord), make Modesty look and feel as good as it is!

Remember that we’ve come to embrace godly femininity because our eyes have been opened by God enabling us to see in the spirit (things for what they are!). But our daughters are just children. And they are very vulnerable. Every way and where you turn sin is being glamorized (glorified). And if it’s hard for us being grown women to embrace our natural beauty with all of this brainwashing then what do you think our daughters are up against. Most likely, her favorite doll, character and/or TV personality is Antichrist suggestive. So it’s our job (especially as women) to make the gospel look attractive.

The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good thingsThat they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.” (Titus 2:3-5)

Practically, I try to take good care of myself because my daughter notices every little thing I do (and don’t!) do. I also give her a healthy amount of compliments and invite her in as much of my personal (womanhood) life as I can. For instance, I involve her in shopping for our clothes and beauty products so that she gains confidence and some individuality. Yes, I let her have her own identity. As long as it’s in Christ and I’m teaching her what that means.

She already knows that our private parts are called private for a reason and that it’s offensive to be out in public naked (or half naked!). She also knows that true beauty is called TRUE beauty for a reason (because its REAL). It’s how God created man. We’re not clowns (or dolls). So it’s not makeup and/or fake hair!

But anyway, I’ve already blogged on all of that. I just hope that this post encourages you as you also seek to raise your daughters up in the fear and admonition of the Lord♥♥ (Group hug!)

Much love,

Brandi

DIY Lemon Facial scrub

Hey guys! So as I was getting ready to give myself a facial this morning, I remembered that I had never shared my recipe as promised (if you’ve been here a while then you know that I’m all about natural beauty AND natural beauty products!). So here’s my little DIY Sugar Scrub recipe. And of course, you can always add or adjust things to your liking 🙂

IMG_1921

Now this recipe only call for 3 ingredients—and that’s granulated white sugar, coconut oil and some Lemon Essential oil. You can use other sugars and oils, I do. This combination just works best for my face. The point is, you need an exfoliant (to exfoliate dead surface skin cells), a moisturizer (to nourish your skin),and something special to add some cleansing and/or health benefits. Essential oils are great because they’re naturally medicinal. Plus, they have (and add!) such lovely fragrances.

IMG_1922

Now the measurements are also something that depends on you. I usually just mix 1 teaspoon of each (sugar and coconut oil) with a couple (literally 2!) drops of essential oil. And that’s because I make my facial scrub as needed (as a single use). Obviously, you would use more to make a batch big enough to share and/or store. Also, depending on the consistency you like, that will also determine how much of what you will add. I like my scrub to be like more of a paste. So add more sugar if you like yours drier like sand.

IMG_1923

Once you’ve gotten that all figured out, just mix all of your ingredients together and apply it to your (damped) face (gently massaging your face in a circular motion). Next, wash it off with cool water. Then don’t forget to apply a little extra moisturizer.That’s it! Let me know if you try it out. And feel free to share some of your own DIY recipes with me!

Much love, Brandi

♥♥

Single ladies, PUT SOME CLOTHES ON GIRL!

Made with Square InstaPic

A picture of me when I was a single (professing Christian) woman taking selfies after getting dressed for church one morning. I should’ve been preparing my heart for worship, not for vanity and/or seduction!

So I was just explaining to another sister in the Lord how women wearing immodest apparel effects more than just men. I was telling her how I can barely take a family trip to the grocery store because I don’t want my husband OR CHILDREN exposed to all these naked women. And this is the thing (because the world is going to do what the world does), my issue is with all these professing Christians. Especially single “Christian” women who call themselves praying for a godly man and/or marriage.

You see, if you are still walking around half naked and selfish (thinking that it’s everyone else’s problem for looking) then you are NOT in Christ and you are NOT ready to be a wife! How can you be ready for marriage when you don’t even honor or respect other people’s marriages (and families!)?

And if you have not been faithful in what is another man’s, who will give you what is your own?” (Luke 16:12, NKJV)

And please understand that this post is not a rant because I remember being in that same self absorbed place as a single woman. I was in my own little world (totally unaware).  So even though there are a lot of whores out here, I understand that not everyone is trying to be seductive. Some are just ignorant. That’s what I was. And oh how I wish that someone would’ve told me to put some clothes on! I had no idea. I had NEVER considered the fact that I may have been offending married people (and corrupting their children!).

So this post is for those who have an ear to hear. Modesty is so much more than apparel. It’s about humility, and love for other people. It doesn’t matter how nice her body is (or how beautiful she may be!), a true woman of God will conceal what she has to if that’s what’s best for others.

Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit [through factional motives, or strife], but with [an attitude of] humility [being neither arrogant nor self-righteous], regard others as more important than yourselves. Do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.” (Philippians 2:3-4, AMP)

So don’t serve satan as a stumbling block. Consider what you’re wearing. And be honest, would you want your husband to notice another woman’s body? And I say notice (not look at) because not every man is full of lust. I can assure you that other women AND CHILDREN are noticing your nakedness as well. So humble yourself, and put some clothes on girl!

With nothing but love,

Brandi

♥♥ P.s If you really do desire a godly marriage, I want you to know that nudity repels godly men. If you’re interested, here’s a post on How To choose Modest apparel because this is also the reason why you’re feeling overlooked (or like you’re attracting the wrong men).

Zeeway Apparel

Leave your husband a special love note somewhere!

Hey guys! So I really didn’t get a chance to post at all last week. My husband took a few days off and ya’ll know what that means 🙂 I really enjoyed his company but I also realized how exhausted he is. So I just want to take a few minutes to inspire all of you wives to take some time and let your husbands know how appreciated they are.

Now you can do this in many ways (preferably his favorites!) but I’m just going to share one that has been effective in my marriage. And that’s leaving random love notes. I’ve been doing this since we first got married, and I leave them everywhere from the microwave to the shower (which by the way is a great way to initiate some good GOOD lovin’!).

 

 

Now keep in mind that I’m a writer (meaning that I express my thoughts and feelings better on paper), and one of my husband’s strengths is that he is a GREAT communicator. So while my husband really gets a kick out of these notes, yours may only appreciate them in the moment. And that’s okay, you just have to make it worth his while.

For instance, the other night, I snuck outside and left a note in my husband’s car (while he was in the shower), telling him that I appreciate all of the hard work and sacrifices he makes for our family. My husband wakes up every morning at 4 o’clock, and heads out to work while the rest of us are still all warm and snuggly in the bed. Now even though I usually see him off (and talk to him the whole way there!) I thought that the note would motivate him because he’s tired and it did! It even opened up a conversation about his mornings that we may have never had. So I encourage you to start leaving your husband some special handwritten notes. And place them in places that you know he’ll stumble upon (wallets and lunch kits are a great place to start!).

Much love!

Brandi Collins

IMG_1901

♥♥

In what other ways are you guys showing your husbands that you appreciate them?

Who This Blog is For

In one of my most recent post, I talked a little bit about casting your pearls before swine. And with much thought and consideration I thought that it would be appropriate to specify who I am blogging to (or for). Now obviously this site isn’t private so (in that sense) it’s “inviting” to the general public. But make no mistake about it, this blog is specifically for the saints!

I remember when I first started blogging. I was so discouraged because it seemed (and still seems!) like no one was reading my posts.  So naturally, I began to pray for fellowship. And I began to ask God how to get some interaction. But that was a while ago. The Lord has dealt with me, and he has given me direction for this site.

I am here to encourage my sisters (and brothers) in the Lord. I am not here to convince devils or self righteous (having their own standards of what’s right or good enough!) church people about what the bible truly teaches. Besides, there’s no use. We are living in the last (of the last!) days. There’s no getting through to those who are under a strong delusion. And I know that may sound harsh but it’s reality. Ya’ll know that there is nothing comfortable (or appealing!) about the truth to those who love lies and take pleasure in unrighteousness.

“Now, dear brothers and sisters, let us clarify some things about the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and how we will be gathered to meet him. Don’t be so easily shaken or alarmed by those who say that the day of the Lord has already begun. Don’t believe them, even if they claim to have had a spiritual vision, a revelation, or a letter supposedly from us. Don’t be fooled by what they say. For that day will not come until there is a great rebellion against God and the man of lawlessness is revealed—the one who brings destruction. He will exalt himself and defy everything that people call god and every object of worship. He will even sit in the temple of God, claiming that he himself is God. Don’t you remember that I told you about all this when I was with you? And you know what is holding him back, for he can be revealed only when his time comes. For this lawlessness is already at work secretly, and it will remain secret until the one who is holding it back steps out of the way. Then the man of lawlessness will be revealed, but the Lord Jesus will slay him with the breath of his mouth and destroy him by the splendor of his coming. This man will come to do the work of Satan with counterfeit power and signs and miracles. He will use every kind of evil deception to fool those on their way to destruction, because they refuse to love and accept the truth that would save them. So God will cause them to be greatly deceived, and they will believe these lies. Then they will be condemned for enjoying evil rather than believing the truth.” (2 Thessalonians 2:1-12, NLT)

You see, this blog is not for those type of people—people who are so caught up in this world that they can’t even fathom coming to repentance. I write for those of you who are truly seeking the Lord. For those of you who are proving your faith to be real by your WORKS (because faith without works is dead!).

Now I understand that the Lord is still drawing people to Himself so if you aren’t a born again believer yet that’s okay. The point is, if you have an ear to hear, then you are also welcome here.

But anyway, now that you all know who I’m talking to.. I hope that you are all standing strong in the Lord and on His word.

Much love,

Brandi Collins

A13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth_ (2)

The Best Children’s Bibles!

IMG_1881

So let me just start off by saying (just in case someone doesn’t know) that I am a Mama bear♥ Yes, I have FIVE kids and if the Lord is willing I would love to have many more. I know that true motherhood isn’t really valued in these last and evil days, but it is truly an honor and a blessing to be called to raise up babies in the fear and admonition of the Lord. But anyways (because that’s another post for another day), I just wanted to share what bibles I use to teach my children in addition to teaching them by being, of course.

So we use the New Living Translation (NLT) whenever we do group bible studies. And we use these New International Reader’s Version (NIrV) Adventure Bibles that I just bought for everyday reading. Now we have to be VERY careful with some translations (or paraphrases!) of the bible because many are watered down in order to be palatable for the world. But I have been reading this version lately in my own quiet time and I’m telling you that it’s legit. Its even helped inspire a few of my latest posts!

IMG_1893

Here’s a look inside!

Also, if you have babies and/or toddlers don’t worry, I do too. I found a “Beginner’s bible” that sticks to the scriptures. And this is something that the kids can read to each other (or you can do like I do and just read it to them in place of silly bedtime stories!).

IMG_1885IMG_1890

So I hope that you check these versions out. Let me know if you are curious about what versions I like to read and study with myself.

Much love,

Brandi Collins

♥♥

P.s I purchased these bibles from Hobby Lobby (and from Amazon) for around $10 each!

Throwing Your Pearls to Swine

So yesterday, I talked about the danger in judging others, and (briefly!) I just want to mention one more thing! As I was rereading the opening scriptures, I realized that Jesus wrapped all of that up with something very, very important. He told us to help each other as we overcome BUT DON’T cast our pearls before swine.

“Do not judge and criticize and condemn [others unfairly with an attitude of self-righteous superiority as though assuming the office of a judge], so that you will not be judged [unfairly]. For just as you[hypocritically] judge others [when you are sinful and unrepentant], so will you be judged; and in accordance with your standard of measure[used to pass out judgment], judgment will be measured to you. Why do you look at the [insignificant] speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice and acknowledge the [egregious] log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me get the speck out of your eye,’ when there is a log in your own eye? You hypocrite (play-actor, pretender), first get the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. Do not give that which is holy to dogs, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, for they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.” (Matthew 7:1-6, AMP, Yesterday’s opening scriptures)

You see it’s one thing to humbly rebuke a brother or sister in the Lord (Or even to share the good news with those who may have never heard). But it’s a whole ‘nother thing to waste our time (and to exhaust ourselves!) trying to convince those who are under a strong delusion. So I’m just going to assume that you all know what I’m saying. And if you have no idea what I’m talking about, I encourage you to go back and read yesterday’s post  🙂

With nothing but love,

Brandi

♥♥ And as always, here’s a couple scriptures to consider:

(Proverbs 9:6-8, NLT) Leave your simple ways behind, and begin to live; learn to use good judgment. Anyone who rebukes a mocker will get an insult in return. Anyone who corrects the wicked will get hurt. So don’t bother correcting mockersthey will only hate you. But correct the wise, and they will love you.”

(Revelation 22:10-15) And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at handHe that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still. And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.

 

The Danger in Judging others

 “Do not judge and criticize and condemn [others unfairly with an attitude of self-righteous superiority as though assuming the office of a judge], so that you will not be judged [unfairly]. For just as you[hypocritically] judge others [when you are sinful and unrepentant], so will you be judged; and in accordance with your standard of measure[used to pass out judgment], judgment will be measured to you. Why do you look at the [insignificant] speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice and acknowledge the [egregious] log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me get the speck out of your eye,’ when there is a log in your own eye? You hypocrite (play-actor, pretender), first get the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. Do not give that which is holy to dogs, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, for they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.” (Matthew 7:1-6, AMP)

Now let me just start off by saying that there is a difference between judging and discerning. Judging is forming an unjust opinion, or verdict concerning someone and their business (life). Judging is NOT identifying (or recognizing) who or what someone truly is or isn’t. That is discernment. And according to the bible, we have to “judge” (in that sense) people by their fruit lest we be deceived too. There are MANY false prophets and teachers and converts and Jesus’.. So we better start measuring people (including ourselves!) up to the scriptures. And if you are genuinely doing this, then you know that it’s not fun coming to a sober conclusion that someone you love (or admire) is not of God. It’s heartbreaking. Especially when they are offended by your concerns and/or reject your rebuke.

We are living in those (end!) times when people are no longer able to endure sound doctrine. These people, who don’t want to be “judged” are obviously living (and loving!) lies.

Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching. For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. They will reject the truth and chase after myths.” (2 Timothy 4:2-4, NLT)

So don’t apologize for standing on the Word of God. Judging just has such a bad wrap because most people (and I’m guilty of this myself!) are going around slandering and condemning folks for sins that they themselves are still committing. And this is SO dangerous because God is no respecter of persons. Just as disgusted (or as irritated) as you are about someone else’s sin (that you’re also dealing with), God is the One who is truly offended (by BOTH of you who haven’t come to repentance!). And we who are judging hypocritically, are even worst without excuse because our attitudes toward the person (and their sin) testifies against us. It not only proves that we know what we’re both doing wrong, but it proves that we are in an even worst state than they are. Because if we actually believe that we are better off than them to condemn, then we are self righteous and blinded by our own sin. And this is exactly what Jesus was talking about in Matthew chapter 7. It’s not that we can’t acknowledge or rebuke other people’s sin (because we’re encouraged too). It’s just that we have to make sure that we’re spiritually mature and are walking upright ourselves. The whole point is to help each other out before we get judged FOR REAL by God. So, I hope that this clarifies some things. Let me know if you have any questions 🙂

Much love,

Brandi Collins

♥♥ Here’s some more scriptures to consider:

(Romans 2:1-21, NLT) You may think you can condemn such people, but you are just as bad, and you have no excuse! When you say they are wicked and should be punished, you are condemning yourself, for you who judge others do these very same things. And we know that God, in his justice, will punish anyone who does such things. Since you judge others for doing these things, why do you think you can avoid God’s judgment when you do the same things? Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can’t you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin? But because you are stubborn and refuse to turn from your sin, you are storing up terrible punishment for yourself. For a day of anger is coming, when God’s righteous judgment will be revealed. He will judge everyone according to what they have done. He will give eternal life to those who keep on doing good, seeking after the glory and honor and immortality that God offers. But he will pour out his anger and wrath on those who live for themselves, who refuse to obey the truth and instead live lives of wickedness. There will be trouble and calamity for everyone who keeps on doing what is evil—for the Jew first and also for the Gentile. But there will be glory and honor and peace from God for all who do good—for the Jew first and also for the Gentile. For God does not show favoritism. When the Gentiles sin, they will be destroyed, even though they never had God’s written law. And the Jews, who do have God’s law, will be judged by that law when they fail to obey it. For merely listening to the law doesn’t make us right with God. It is obeying the law that makes us right in his sight. Even Gentiles, who do not have God’s written law, show that they know his law when they instinctively obey it, even without having heard it. They demonstrate that God’s law is written in their hearts, for their own conscience and thoughts either accuse them or tell them they are doing right. And this is the message I proclaim—that the day is coming when God, through Christ Jesus, will judge everyone’s secret life. You who call yourselves Jews are relying on God’s law, and you boast about your special relationship with him. You know what he wants; you know what is right because you have been taught his law. You are convinced that you are a guide for the blind and a light for people who are lost in darkness. You think you can instruct the ignorant and teach children the ways of God. For you are certain that God’s law gives you complete knowledge and truth. Well then, if you teach others, why don’t you teach yourself? You tell others not to steal, but do you steal? You say it is wrong to commit adultery, but do you commit adultery? You condemn idolatry, but do you use items stolen from pagan temples? You are so proud of knowing the law, but you dishonor God by breaking it. No wonder the Scriptures say, ‘The Gentiles blaspheme the name of God because of you.’ “

(Galatians 6:1, NLT) “Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself.”

How to have peace of mind

Fortunately, this post isn’t going to be that long because (contrary to what you may have been experiencing) having peace of mind is actually quite simple. Now I just have to clarify some things, this post isn’t for those of you who are being convicted of sin or are double minded. You do not want a seared conscience (or a reprobate mind), so repent of your sins and abstain from old fleshly lusts that wage war against your souls (as told in 1 Peter, Chapter 2, verse 11). Because the flesh is the problem.  When we (who are in Christ because there is no peace outside of Jesus Christ) don’t have peace of mind, it’s because we are being carnal. The thoughts of a mind influenced by sin (because that’s what the carnal mind is—hostile and disobedient to God.) brings nothing but death. It’s the mind mastered by the Spirit that yields life AND PEACE.

Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit. So letting your sinful nature control your mind leads to death. But letting the Spirit control your mind leads to life and peaceFor the sinful nature is always hostile to God. It never did obey God’s laws, and it never will. That’s why those who are still under the control of their sinful nature can never please God.” (Romans 8:5-8, NLT)

So let us abide in the Spirit. And let us continue to wash our filthy (and faithless!) minds with the scriptures. We can not please (or serve) God being anxious, fearful and/or doubtful (Hebrews 11:6). All of these spirits are demonic and carnal. Remember that unclean spirits dwell or “make their homes” in our flesh.

So, I hope that this post encourages you to renew your mind. I love you and I am praying for you all!

Your sister, Brandi Collins

_Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace (1)

My Coming to Jesus Testimony

PhotoGrid_1418398290575

I have a confession, I have never shared my testimony before. I know, and to be honest, it’s because I was ashamed of it. Compared to other testimonies I’ve heard, my life just seems so insignificant and boring. I was never addicted to drugs or lived a lavish lifestyle so I had convinced myself that my testimony wasn’t powerful because it wasn’t dramatic enough! But the devil truly is a liar. My changed life (and my changed mind!) is a witness to the power of God. So I want to share my story with you all. And I hope that it helps you get to know me a little better in order to receive the things I mention on the blog.

So I’ll just start by quickly running through my childhood. Now I wasn’t raised in church or anything like that. I would just visit churches whenever I would spend the weekend with my grandparents. Both sides of my family were (and are) professing Christians but their lives, and their hearts were (are still are) so far from God. So I had never heard the gospel, was taught the bible or was even encouraged to pray. My Mom’s side of the family was (and many still are) apart of the Eastern Orthodox church. So anything I might have learned was false doctrine anyway. My dad wasn’t apart of my life. I didn’t (and still don’t) have a relationship with him. And my mother’s grandmother helped her raise me and my younger brothers because she would work all day then  kick it in the streets all night. So I had a love hate relationship with my mother when I was younger.

IMG_20150128_203255077As a teenager, I was very promiscuous. And even though I was molested at twelve years old by my cousin’s father I don’t contribute that to that. If anything, being molested made me timid and insecure. But I had a spirit of lust since I was about 6 or 7 years old. I used to watch porn that came on tv. I didn’t really know what I was watching, I just knew that it made me want to masturbate. And that’s exactly what I would do. But like I said, I never connected being molested to my sexuality because masturbating was pleasurable and being molested wasn’t. I’m sure I got some demons from that perversion too but lust was already there laying dormant. But anyway, I lost my virginity when I was 15 to an older guy who was in his mid 20’s. From then on, I began to sleep around. In my life I’ve slept with about 20 men. I’ve had a few sexually transmitted diseases and eventually ended up in a very scary physically abusive relationship.

I was expelled from high school in the beginning of my sophomore year for beating up a girl (over a boy!) with a keychain full of pad locks. So I never even finished highschool (I got my GED later on in life when I was in my early 20’s). I spent all that extra time out of school smoking weed, drinking alcohol, sleeping around, stealing cars and partying with fake IDs.

IMG_20150103_011925526 (1)

An old picture of me and one of my younger brothers.

I got pregnant for the first time when I was 19, and I didn’t even know who the father of my kids was (I had twins!). I had to get DNA tests done. And ended up in a toxic relationship with the father of my children. We went back and forth doing the babymama drama thing for YEARS until I began (what I thought was!) seeking the Lord. So i’ll just fast forward to that.

In 2011, after I had my daughter. me and my children’s father decided to move to Texas as if that would solve all of our problems. We thought that we just needed to uproot our little family from our hometown (I’m from the suburbs of Chicago) and move the suburbs of Houston, Texas. (Sighs) Let’s just say it didn’t work out. He had dreams of being a rapper and for the first time I was being exposed to southern religion.

 

I remember being invited to a bible study on Tuesday night and the pastor gave me a bible and that began to change my life. I started reading the old testament where I learned about God’s character and  His standards. I was so excited to learn more so eventually I joined the church. But it wasn’t long before my zeal was quenched out. The particular church that I was attending was not preaching holiness or repentance. And when I would address what I was learning from reading the bible concerning sin (or things like how the praise team was taking up the whole service when we should be listening to the message or praying!) I was shut down and considered a novice (or a baby christian). When in reality, I wasn’t even a Christian at all. I never repented of my sins or believed the gospel. The gospel wasn’t even being preached at this church. This place was full of selfish ambition and the pride of life. And that’s what I became all about. I had deceived myself into thinking that I was a born again believer when I was no different then I had always been. Now I was just going to church. I had no works to follow my faith other than lip service. My faith was DEAD. I honestly believe that God allowed me to be apart of that church just so that I could experience the current state of the “church”. Because as I kept praying and reading my bible at home. I had no peace in the relationship with my children’s father or that church. So I cut them both off. And that allowed me to begin to wholeheartedly seek the truth.

imagejpeg_0_2-1-1

One of our first dates!

Over the next year, I was still a wreck and of the world but I abstained from sexual relations while I was a single woman. Also, I spent all my time working (to provide for me and my children) and fasting (the best to my knowledge!). I would literally BEG God with all my heart to know Him (and for a husband!). Looking back, He responded quickly but in my despair it felt like I was waiting FOREVER!

In April of 2015 I started dating my now husband. He proposed in November of that year, and we got married the following January (2016). My husband was born and raised in Houston, Texas. He grew up in the church and was “preaching” at the church he attended. And I’m using air quotations because at that time, neither of us knew Jesus!

So anyway, after a couple months of searching for a place to worship together, we ended up just reading the bible and praying at home together. As a couple, we were wholeheartedly seeking the Lord together. As time went on, the Lord began to reveal himself (or I should say His ways) to us. We began to learn and to love (aka TO OBEY) His commandments. This is when the sanctification process began. We found ourselves coming to repentance and out from among our old friends and ungodly family members. I even left my job (right after a big promotion!) to stay home full time to care for my husband and children. Life was painfully changing drastically as we were dying to ourselves in order to be born again of the spirit. And since we still hadn’t found a place to fellowship, my husband just baptized me in the pool of our apartment complex.

Shortly after my water baptism, I began to experience a lot of demonic activity. I began having frequent dreams and visions. And I started involuntarily astral projecting. It got to the point where demons would literally manifest themselves to me in broad daylight. This hindered my walk for about a year because I was TERRIFIED. I slept (if I even slept at all) with the lights on EVERY single night. It was tormenting. I was oppressed by fear, depression and anxiety. My faith was completely shaken. I found myself questioning the bible (well the “trinity” and the once saved always saved doctrines— which AREN’T even in the bible!) as I  began to fear these beings more than I feared God. At that time I also became mesmerized by the occult as I educated myself on satanism and witchcraft.  At first I was feeling all enlightened and superior then the demonic attacks got even worst.

Thank God for my husband because I was on the verge of insanity. And all along, deep down inside I just truly wanted to know and to worship God. That was the darkest point of my life. I remember calling (well yelling) out to God in desperation asking Him to just tell me the truth and who He was. I told Him that if He didn’t manifest himself to me than I was going to give up on this whole Christian thing..  And I’ll never forget. Jesus himself responded to me. He said (very calmly, which was embarrassing in the midst of my disrespectful and dramatic outburst.), “All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him.” (Matthew 11:27)

Jesus told me that he was the way to the Father. Which was so profound because all this time I had thought that he was God! Jesus is the son of God just like he, the bible and God Himself says is. Finally, the truth began to set me free. I realized that mainstream Christianity was full of false doctrines and that the bible didn’t contradict itself! Instantly I was delivered from some (not all but some) demons that were hindering me. I couldn’t believe (well obviously I did believe!) that I had just had an encounter with (and revelation of) the living Christ! And from that moment on I began to have a REAL relationship with him.

About a year later, I was sitting in my car with the windows down reading Hebrews and praying to the Father when suddenly something like the breeze (and maybe it was the breeze) compelled me to start praying in what sounded like Spanish. So I jumped out of the car (praising God in another language) and ran into the house because I didn’t know what was going to happen. Now I know that I was being filled with the holy ghost. I was instantly delivered that day from more demons and received power to overcome sin and worldliness. Today, I am still working out my salvation with fear and trembling, and I am compelled to preach the true gospel of Jesus Christ (which is to repent of your sins because the kingdom of God is at hand!). God is so faithful to save, and to reveal himself to those who seek Him with all their heart. And Jesus is everything♥ He loves us SO much. He is truly all that he says he is. With my life, I can testify. So if you have any questions or need prayer please let me know because time is running out. The end of time is here! If you’ve read any of my blogs, I understand that you may have taken my tough love (and hard truths!) to be self righteous or arrogance. But I created this blog out of love for women who are also truly seeking the Lord. You just read my story. I am nothing but a witness to the truth and to the power of God. So please, consider the things you read here on this blog. And more importantly, read your bible and follow the commandments of Jesus Christ. God bless you for your time.

Your sister, Brandi Collins

IMG_20150126_120542269  IMG_7310 IMG_20150116_192734965

WIN_20190304_08_24_59_Pro

“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.” (Revelation 12:11)

 

♥♥ By the way, I’m 30 years old if anyone is wondering 🙂 Also, please feel free to share your own testimony with us in the comments!

Similar posts:

Why I left the Church

 Why I no longer wear makeup or hair weaves 

How I dress now after my encounter with Jesus

Why I quit my job to stay home full-time

Feeling defeated by your sin?

_Listen! The Lord’s arm is not too weak to save you, nor is his ear too deaf to hear you call. It’s your sins that have cut you off from God. Because of your sins, he has turned away and will not listen anymore._

Happy Sabbath everyone! So this morning, as usual, I was thinking about how amazing God is. Then it dawned on me how we really don’t have any excuse to be overcome by sin. Some of us are really struggling but the truth is, there is nothing in our little lives that God can not vanquish.

If we are truly in Christ and ABIDING in His spirit, then it is His will and His power working within us.

 “For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.” (Philippians 2:13)

So why are we being defeated? And what kind of testimony does our lives witness to unbelievers when we are still bound by sin and can’t overcome this world? Who would believe in a god (or in the message of his son!) whose people aren’t experiencing (or benefiting from) their so called sovereignty?  You see, this is why the bible says God is mocked and blasphemed among the gentiles.

“You who call yourselves Jews are relying on God’s law, and you boast about your special relationship with him. You know what he wants; you know what is right because you have been taught his law. You are convinced that you are a guide for the blind and a light for people who are lost in darkness. You think you can instruct the ignorant and teach children the ways of God. For you are certain that God’s law gives you complete knowledge and truth.Well then, if you teach others, why don’t you teach yourself? You tell others not to steal, but do you steal? You say it is wrong to commit adultery, but do you commit adultery? You condemn idolatry, but do you use items stolen from pagan temples? You are so proud of knowing the law, but you dishonor God by breaking it. No wonder the Scriptures say, ‘The Gentiles blaspheme the name of God because of you.’

(Romans 2:17-24, NLT)

And even though Paul was addressing Jews concerning the law, it’s the same as all of us professing Christ with our mouths when our hearts and lives are JACKED UP! And I’m not saying that we should be perfect overnight but we shouldn’t have certain issues if we have God’s power in us. There’s no excuses! We’re either lacking the faith to truly function or we have sin in our lives that we don’t want to repent of. Both are unacceptable. You can not please God (or inherit the kingdom!) without faith and sin (and worldliness!) is why Jesus came! He defeats the devil, and he overcame the world so through him we have victory. We are more than conquerors!

So the next time you find yourself thinking that your issues are too much for God, just remember who HE is and that His grace is sufficient. Also, we would do good to humble ourselves. It’s okay (and necessary!) to go back to the basics. At some point we have to examine ourselves to see if we’re truly in the faith. It’s a matter of life or death so let’s just do that today. Repent and believe the gospel.

With nothing but love,

Brandi

♥♥

Be careful then, dear brothers and sisters. Make sure that your own hearts are not evil and unbelieving, turning you away from the living God. You must warn each other every day, while it is still “today,” so that none of you will be deceived by sin and hardened against GodFor if we are faithful to the end, trusting God just as firmly as when we first believed, we will share in all that belongs to Christ. Remember what it says: ‘Today when you hear his voice, don’t harden your hearts as Israel did when they rebelled.’ ” (Hebrews 3:12-15, NLT)

30 Prayer prompts for wives

When we were just newly weds! We had NO IDEA that life as we knew it would change BE OVER! It hasn’t been easy but I thank God for quickening us. Now we BOTH love God and His ways and are born again believers.

My husband has always said that I make him feel 7ft tall 🙂 I believe that’s because in addition to building him up physically and emotionally (through healthy meals, good lovin’, honor and encouragement etc.), I also lift him up spiritually. Listen, prayer is tried and true! I’ve learned that at the end of the day, God is the only one with all the wisdom, truth and power to actually change your situations for the better.

A few years ago (when I was a newly wed), I stumbled across this 30 Day Prayer Challenge for wives and I want to share it with you in case any of you could use some prayer prompts. Now I’m not endorsing the website I got it from, I’m just sharing this specific post with you guys. As a matter a fact, I encourage you to just go through the prompts and create your own little prayer journals or something. That’s what I did.

 

Here’s a picture of my Marriage Prayer Journal. I bought a blue one (that sparkles of course!) because blue is my husband’s favorite color. Trust me, It’s the little things in life!

But anyway, here’s the link to the challenge. I pray that it blesses you and your marriages♥

With love,

Brandi Collins

20190608_155723_HDR

Me and Papa 🙂 If you’re interested, we also shared some things that make our marriage work!

♥♥

Forsaking worldly entertainment

 

Now I’m sure that the average professing Christian would think that I’m a bit extreme because I don’t have a TV in my house or listen to the radio.  Also, my husband and I just got through reiterating to our children (as we showed them pictures of basketball players wearing nail polish and purses!) why we don’t even follow professional sports anymore.

You see, the celebrities of this world are being used by satan to manipulate the masses into being (or accepting) everything that God hates. And this isn’t some illuminati conspiracy theory. It’ the truth. Even unbelievers know that the entertainment industry is Antichrist. Yet and still, we have professing Christians out here claiming to be so deep but they’re just as obsessed with Beyonce’ (and Obama!) as everyone else.

I would like to believe that true believers (especially in these end times) would have nothing to do with idol worship but the fact of the matter is that most of us are lukewarm. We love this world! We love it’s movies, and it’s music, and it’s fashion etc. But I’m here to WARN you that if you don’t forsake this world, you will be in danger of HELL FIRE. This world (and everything it values!), is not only Antichrist (in opposition to Jesus Christ) but it is going to burn in the fire of The Most High God’s WRATH.  So it’s time to come separate. We have to make a decision— Are we going to love (obey!) the Lord and His ways or are we going to deny Christ? Which in reality is what we’re already doing with our lives when we emulate these ungodly celebrities and pursue the pride of life. Don’t you know that your covetousness (which is idolatry) and your  guilty SINFUL pleasures are making you an enemy of God!?

“You adulteresses [disloyal sinners—flirting with the world and breaking your vow to God]! Do you not know that being the world’s friend [that is, loving the things of the world] is being God’s enemy? So whoever chooses to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.” (James 4:4, AMP)

Here’s another one:

“Do not love the world [of sin that opposes God and His precepts], nor the things that are in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the lust and sensual craving of the flesh and the lust and longing of the eyes and the boastful pride of life [pretentious confidence in one’s resources or in the stability of earthly things]—these do not come from the Father, but are from the world. The world is passing away, and with it its lusts [the shameful pursuits and ungodly longings]; but the one who does the will of God and carries out His purposes lives forever. (1 John 2:15-17, AMP)

We really need to start reading our bibles (and actually start applying it to our lives) because we are living in the Great Deception/the end of time. Everyone, including these celebrities are claiming to be of God but you can tell by their fruit that they are NOT. These people (and their followers) love money, they hate God.

“No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and be enslaved to money.” (Matthew 6:24, NLT)

So I just wanted to remind you of these things. I could go on and on forever but the point is to guard your heart. Stand strong in the Lord, and on what the bible teaches.

With nothing but love,

Brandi

_Add For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world_ and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith._ (1 John 5_4)

Encouragement for those struggling with Unforgiveness

_Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice_ And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's s (1)

Now I’ve shared a few things I’ve learned about forgiving others in the past but I just want to talk a little bit about it again. As we are preparing for the return of our Lord, I want us to make sure that we don’t have any unforgiveness hiding out in our hearts. We can repent of every other sin but if we are harboring a hard, unforgiving heart we will NOT make it in to heaven. And I know that people have done some TERRIBLE things to us (and to those we love!) but if we won’t forgive them, then God will not forgive us.

“If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.” (Matthew 6:14-15, NLT)

Trust me, I know that it is truly difficult to forgive. And I know what it’s like to be willing but when looking back at the situation (or incident) it just reignites flames. This is why we have to FORGET the offense (and not just depending on what it is!) No matter what someone has done, we have to let it go. We don’t have to be naive and fellowship with them but we have to LOVE, and Love keeps no records of wrong.

“Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily. It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong]. It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. Love never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end].” (Corinthians 13:4-8, AMPC)

So with the power of the holy ghost, let’s let these offenses be small things to giants. Especially when our offenders are people of the world, remembering that our enemies aren’t necessarily them (flesh and blood) but what’s at work in them (spiritual wickedness). The majority of this world has been deceived by satan (and are in bondage to sin!). So knowing this, we should have all the more mercy and compassion. And not that it excuses their sin but we don’t need to worry about that because it they don’t repent, God will avenge.

So.. this is just something to think about. I pray we’re all working our salvation out.

Much love,

Brandi

♥♥

By the way, here’s what Jesus had to say about dealing with those who offend us…

 “But to you who are willing to listen, I say, love your enemies! Do good to those who hate you. Bless those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you. If someone slaps you on one cheek, offer the other cheek also. If someone demands your coat, offer your shirt also. Give to anyone who asks; and when things are taken away from you, don’t try to get them back. Do to others as you would like them to do to you.If you love only those who love you, why should you get credit for that? Even sinners love those who love them!And if you do good only to those who do good to you, why should you get credit? Even sinners do that much! And if you lend money only to those who can repay you, why should you get credit? Even sinners will lend to other sinners for a full return. Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to those who are unthankful and wicked.You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate. (Luke 6:27-36, NLT)

Remember that Complaining is a Sin

Flowers (3)

A couple weeks ago (or maybe it was last week, I can’t remember!) I shared with you all my struggles with food. And after fasting (and praying with a couple sisters) I have been strengthened AND DELIVERED. Yes! It’s true, we have victory over sin and death through Christ Jesus. So I just wanted to update you all on all of that, and also share another sin that I am working toward repentance. And that sin is Complaining. Yes, complaining.

Complaining is a very dangerous sin (in my opinion) because it is often excused and overlooked by man. But we KNOW (according to the old testament), that grumbling (expressing our discontentment in a soft but sullen manner) and complaining (boldly expressing our dissatisfaction or annoyances) kindles the anger of God. It annoys Him.

The Lord can not stand doubt, or ungratefulness. And He’s shown me that all discontentment stems from pride and worldliness (and how doubt insults Him). So, I’m diligently working on this. I’ve even created a complaining journal—where I record every time I complain and what I am complaining about. Ironically, I haven’t complained yet (I started my journal earlier this week). And it may seem silly but making it through 1 day (let alone a few!) without complaining is literally a work of God for me. So I give Him ALL the glory.  I think the idea of the whole complaining journal just made me aware of the fact that I do complain and it held me accountable. I planned on reviewing what I recorded throughout the day, each night because I wanted to acknowledge (and be ashamed of!) how petty and foolish my complaints were.

So I encourage you to also give the complaining journal a try (if this is something you also struggle with) because You WILL overcome (this sin and any other sin) if you repent and if you abide in the holy Spirit.

“For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him.” (Philippians 2:13, NLT)

Amen? Amen.  So let us glorify the Lord, even with our attitudes. Because who would want to serve a God whose people are always seeming full of lack and downcast?

♥♥

A few scriptures to consider:

(1 Thessalonians 5: 14-18) “Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men. See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men. Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

(Philippians 2:12-16, NLT) “Dear friends, you always followed my instructions when I was with you. And now that I am away, it is even more important. Work hard to show the results of your salvation, obeying God with deep reverence and fear. For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him. Do everything without complaining and arguing,so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people.” 

*For those of you who love and enjoy the bible like I do, here’s the story about when the children of Israel’s complaining made God (and Moses!) so mad that He burned up their camp and plagued them with quail. This account is found in Numbers, chapter 11.

We are NOT sinners! Stop saying that.

 

 

_Therefore if anyone is in Christ [that is, grafted in, joined to Him by faith in Him as Savior], he is a new creature [reborn and renewed by the Holy Spirit]; the old things [the previous moral and spiritual (3)

So there’s this common phrase (or should I say misquoted scripture) that we are all “sinners saved by grace”. Now I understand the concept but the problem I have with this is, that the bible says that those who are born again do NOT sin.

“See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know him. Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is. And all who have this eager expectation will keep themselves pure, just as he is pure. Everyone who sins is breaking God’s law, for all sin is contrary to the law of God. And you know that Jesus came to take away our sins, and there is no sin in him. Anyone who continues to live in him will not sin. But anyone who keeps on sinning does not know him or understand who he isDear children, don’t let anyone deceive you about this: When people do what is right, it shows that they are righteous, even as Christ is righteous. But when people keep on sinning, it shows that they belong to the devil, who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy the works of the devil. Those who have been born into God’s family do not make a practice of sinning, because God’s life is in them. So they can’t keep on sinning, because they are children of God. So now we can tell who are children of God and who are children of the devil. Anyone who does not live righteously and does not love other believers does not belong to God.” (1 John 3:1-10, NLT)

 

So, speak for yourselves. But don’t put me (or my brothers and sisters in Christ) in that “Sinner” category. And as a matter of fact, you are a sinner. And a child of the devil if you won’t come to repentance. The old you has to pass away, so how are you a new creation in Christ with the same ol’ mind and lifestyle?

The Lord showed it to me this way: if a person who doesn’t smoke (or drink), smokes a cigarette (or drinks a beer) because they were tempted by stupid commercials or peer pressure, that doesn’t make that person a smoker (or a drinker). That just means that this person sinned by smoking a cigarette (or drinking  a beer). Most likely, this person will never smoke (or drink) again because it’s not them. And it’s not in their interest. But if this person just smokes (or drinks) in general, then this person is a smoker (or a drinker).  In the same way, there’s a difference between someone who is tempted to sin and someone who just sins because it’s the norm or a way of life to them. True born again believers do not live in sin. They can’t (not comfortably or happily) because God’s HOLY spirit is in them.

It’s amazing how MANY claim to be filled with the Spirit but have no power to overcome sin, and they mock righteousness. These are the people the bible speaks of in the end times having a form of godliness but deny the power thereof (2 Timothy 3:1-5). And if we truly are in Christ with this mindset, then we are being deceived. Jesus died to set us free from the bondage of sin and death. That’s the power of the resurrection!  So stop living in an unlocked prison cell. Grace is to grow in the process, not to wallow in our sin with excuses. So, I just wanted to share this with you guys and leave you with some scriptures to keep in mind. Stop calling yourself a sinner (and if you are, repent of your sinful lifestyle!).

With nothing but love,

Brandi

♥♥

(Romans Chapter 6, NLT, Sins’ power is broken! ) “Well then, should we keep on sinning so that God can show us more and more of his wonderful grace? Of course not! Since we have died to sin, how can we continue to live in it? Or have you forgotten that when we were joined with Christ Jesus in baptism, we joined him in his death? For we died and were buried with Christ by baptism. And just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glorious power of the Father, now we also may live new lives. Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised to life as he was. We know that our old sinful selves were crucified with Christ so that sin might lose its power in our lives. We are no longer slaves to sin. For when we died with Christ we were set free from the power of sin. And since we died with Christ, we know we will also live with him. We are sure of this because Christ was raised from the dead, and he will never die again. Death no longer has any power over him. When he died, he died once to break the power of sin. But now that he lives, he lives for the glory of God. So you also should consider yourselves to be dead to the power of sin and alive to God through Christ Jesus. Do not let sin control the way you live; do not give in to sinful desires. Do not let any part of your body become an instrument of evil to serve sin. Instead, give yourselves completely to God, for you were dead, but now you have new life. So use your whole body as an instrument to do what is right for the glory of God. Sin is no longer your master, for you no longer live under the requirements of the law. Instead, you live under the freedom of God’s grace. Well then, since God’s grace has set us free from the law, does that mean we can go on sinning? Of course not! Don’t you realize that you become the slave of whatever you choose to obey? You can be a slave to sin, which leads to death, or you can choose to obey God, which leads to righteous living. Thank God! Once you were slaves of sin, but now you wholeheartedly obey this teaching we have given you. Now you are free from your slavery to sin, and you have become slaves to righteous living. Because of the weakness of your human nature, I am using the illustration of slavery to help you understand all this. Previously, you let yourselves be slaves to impurity and lawlessness, which led ever deeper into sin. Now you must give yourselves to be slaves to righteous living so that you will become holy. When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the obligation to do right. And what was the result? You are now ashamed of the things you used to do, things that end in eternal doom. But now you are free from the power of sin and have become slaves of God. Now you do those things that lead to holiness and result in eternal life. For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Purifying ourselves

“Look, I am coming soon, bringing my reward with me to repay all people according to their deeds. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.” Blessed are those who wash th (1)

True religion, accepted by God, according to the bible, is keeping ourselves from being stained (or corrupted) by this world (James 1:27) . But there is a great deception (and a falling away from sound doctrine) that causes people to believe that everything isn’t necessarily a “Salvation issue”. But that couldn’t be further from the truth. God is concerned about EVERYTHING we say and do.

There are so many of us fighting for the things of this world (like makeup, “Fashion”, Beyonce’ etc.) when we should be fighting for eternal life. And you may think that the things you love are innocent but that’s the thing, you LOVE the things of the world! Period. And by the way, nothing of this world is innocent. If it isn’t specifically addressed in the bible, that’s because it falls under the categories of unclean or profane. And just in case your pastor never told you, no unclean thing (including a covetous idolater) will enter into the kingdom.

But nothing that defiles or profanes or is unwashed shall ever enter it, nor anyone who commits abominations (unclean, detestable, morally repugnant things) or practices falsehood, but only those whose names are recorded in the Lamb’s Book of Life.” (Revelation 21:27, AMPC)

So we’ve got to purify ourselves. Being holy isn’t optional (it’s a command!). I know people like to scoff at righteousness but all it means is living right, according to God’s standards. So let’s not be self righteous (having our own standards of what’s right or good enough) but obedient AND FAITHFUL in ALL things.

With nothing but love,

Brandi

♥♥

A few scriptures to consider:

(1 John 3:1-10, NLT ) “See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are! But the people who belong to this world don’t recognize that we are God’s children because they don’t know him. Dear friends, we are already God’s children, but he has not yet shown us what we will be like when Christ appears. But we do know that we will be like him, for we will see him as he really is. And all who have this eager expectation will keep themselves pure, just as he is pure. Everyone who sins is breaking God’s law, for all sin is contrary to the law of God. And you know that Jesus came to take away our sins, and there is no sin in him. Anyone who continues to live in him will not sin. But anyone who keeps on sinning does not know him or understand who he is.  Dear children, don’t let anyone deceive you about this: When people do what is right, it shows that they are righteous, even as Christ is righteous. But when people keep on sinning, it shows that they belong to the devil, who has been sinning since the beginning. But the Son of God came to destroy the works of the devil. Those who have been born into God’s family do not make a practice of sinning, because God’s life is in them. So they can’t keep on sinning, because they are children of God. So now we can tell who are children of God and who are children of the devil. Anyone who does not live righteously and does not love other believers does not belong to God.

(James 4:4-8, AMP)  “You adulteresses [disloyal sinners—flirting with the world and breaking your vow to God]! Do you not know that being the world’s friend [that is, loving the things of the world] is being God’s enemy? So whoever chooses to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture says to no purpose that the [human] spirit which He has made to dwell in us lusts with envy? But He gives us more and more grace [through the power of the Holy Spirit to defy sin and live an obedient life that reflects both our faith and our gratitude for our salvation]. Therefore, it says, “God is opposed to the proud and haughty, but [continually] gives [the gift of] grace to the humble [who turn away from self-righteousness].” So submit to [the authority of] God. Resist the devil [stand firm against him] and he will flee from you. Come close to God [with a contrite heart] and He will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; and purify your [unfaithful] hearts, you double-minded [people].

(2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1, NLT) “Don’t team up with those who are unbelievers. How can righteousness be a partner with wickedness? How can light live with darkness? What harmony can there be between Christ and the devil? How can a believer be a partner with an unbeliever? And what union can there be between God’s temple and idols? For we are the temple of the living God. As God said: “I will live in them and walk among them. I will be their God, and they will be my people. Therefore, come out from among unbelievers, and separate yourselves from them, says the LordDon’t touch their filthy things, and I will welcome you. And I will be your Father, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.” Because we have these promises, dear friends, let us cleanse ourselves from everything that can defile our body or spirit. And let us work toward complete holiness because we fear God.