Tag Archives: live life out loud

Facing Doubts

How to face doubts. Keys to victorious faith. Inspirational blogMany of Jesus’ followers were eye witnesses to the amazing miracles Jesus worked in His life here on the earth. They watched firsthand as Jesus turned water into wine, restored sight to the blind, healed infirmities and brought the dead back to life.

I think about Martha who had spent a lot of time with Jesus; He had been at her home on many occasions and yet she doubted that He could perform such a miracle when Jesus called Lazarus to rise from the dead and walk out of the tomb {John 11}! She allowed her grief and her five-sense realm to dictate to her what her belief should be. She knew in the natural that Lazarus had been dead too long; too long for even Jesus to do anything about – or so she thought. Yet even though Jesus knew she had doubts, Jesus called to Lazarus to come forth and right before Martha’s unbelieving eyes she watched Lazarus walked out of the tomb alive and well!

I believe most of us would probably doubt as well. Twitter would be full of tweets, blogs would be over run with accusations and news TV shows would continue to sow seeds of doubt and discord among the nations of the lies and tricks of this man named Jesus. We would have trouble believing that such a miracle could really happen. However, in the face of our doubts, no matter how strong or cynical, Jesus is still the miracle worker. He is still the one who today heals, frees and even raises those from the dead!

Do we trust He can do anything in our lives today? Do we trust He can and will provide our every need? Do we trust He can open blinded eyes in the natural and in the spirit realm? Do we trust He can and will do even the miraculous?

We cannot allow our doubts keep us from experiencing Jesus’ life changing power. We must trust Him and stand back and watch him work in our lives and in the lives of those around us. Only trust Him, only trust Him, only trust Him now!

{Know someone who is facing hard times? The Drying Pot; And The Refining Fires Necessary To Become A Vessel Used By God}

Am I Praying Properly?

Sandra Hersey. live life out loud. Keys to victorious faithPrayer is vital to our lives, as most of us know. However, most give their “grocery list” prayers I like to call them, which sound something like this: “God, help me pay my mortgage this month. Help my mom to feel better. Send me someone to give me some HELP. Make my spouse understand me more. Please God make my children mind! Thank you Jesus. Amen.”

Though prayer is important, it is of the most importance that we know how to pray properly. And as with anything we must look to the Bible for the correct answer, and who better to look at as an example than Jesus!

When we face times of trials, and storms rise up in our lives, we can seem to be like a tossed ship in raging waters. But God intends for us to chart those “storms of life” with the promises He has already laid out for us in His Word. Jesus knew this when Satan tempted Him in the wilderness. Now you may say “I’m not being tempted to sin, I just need an answer to my prayer.” Think of this my friend, when we are worried we ARE being tempted to sin by not trusting God. God does not want us to worry or His Word would not declare “Be anxious for nothing!” ( Read here for more on why we should not worry). The point I want to show is not about temptation, it is how to follow Jesus when we have Satan bringing on a storm in our life.

Let’s look at Matthew 4: 1-11- 1THEN JESUS was led (guided) by the [Holy] Spirit into the wilderness (desert) to be tempted (tested and tried) by the devil. 2And He went without food for forty days and forty nights, and later He was hungry. 3And the tempter came and said to Him, If You are God’s Son, command these stones to be made [loaves of] bread. 4But He replied, It has been written, Man shall not live and be upheld and sustained by bread alone, but by every word that comes forth from the mouth of God.  5Then the devil took Him into the holy city and placed Him on a turret (pinnacle, gable) of the temple sanctuary. 6And he said to Him, If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down; for it is written, He will give His angels charge over you, and they will bear you up on their hands, lest you strike your foot against a stone. 7Jesus said to him, On the other hand, it is written also, You shall not tempt, test thoroughly, or try exceedingly the Lord your God. 8Again, the devil took Him up on a very high mountain and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and the glory (the splendor, magnificence, preeminence, and excellence) of them.  9And he said to Him, These things, all taken together, I will give You, if You will prostrate Yourself before me and do homage and worship me.  10Then Jesus said to him, Begone, Satan! For it has been written, You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him alone shall you serve. 11Then the devil departed from Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.”

Notice Jesus had the same reply to everything the devil threw at Him; He said over and over “it has been written!” Jesus took the Word of God and declared “It is written” then He spoke out what the Word said about His particular situation!  For example when Satan tried to tell Jesus he would give him all things Jesus said in verse 10 “Begone, Satan! For it has been written, You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him alone shall you serve.” Jesus spoke out it is written and backed it up with Deuteronomy 6:13. Jesus also said, “If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you” (John 15:7). We must have God’s word abiding in us so we can declare it out when we need answer to our prayers!

It is vital we follow Jesus’ examples and instructions. He knew how to talk with His Father  and get His prayers answered, as well as how to send the devil packing when he showed up!

First, find the scripture which has already been promised to you in God’s Word. If you need healing find a healing scripture like 1 Peter 2:24. If you need help in your finances stand and declare Philippians 4:19. If you have an unsaved loved one; bind up the devil over their life according to Matthew 12:29, and pray the Lord of the harvest according to Matthew 9:38 will send labors into their lives to lead them to Jesus! There is a promise from God to you in His Word for EVERY situation in your life! You must find that promise!

Second, you pray out “Father, in Jesus Name, it is written in your Word….” then add the Scripture you are standing on!

Third, give thanks to the Father IN ADVANCE for doing what He promised He would do. THIS is walking in faith! When we know BEFORE it comes that God WILL do it, THEN we are walking in faith. Faith is NOT hoping God will. Faith is not wringing our hands and pleading with God; it is declaring out of our mouths the Word of God. Declaring “it is written, and in Jesus Name” to the Father. Then we keep thanking Him that it is done, NO MATTER what we see in the natural!

We must come to the point where we know we must declare first “It is written” before we can claim “it is finished!”

Know someone who is facing a storm they can’t seem to get out of? Sandra’s book The Drying Pot; And The Refining Fires Necessary to Become a Vessel Used By God is a book of trials and triumphs! She takes you through her real life trials and how she overcame! See how you can move God to change your situation!

Keep on Keeping On

Sandra Hersey. Live life out loud. Keys to Victorious Faith

We don’t have the right or the privilege to stop. We must keep on keeping on. We keep on going after what we are seeking – enduring the storms of life which blow over us all the while.  Matthew 7: 7-8 declares Keep on asking and it will be given you; keep on seeking and you will find; keep on knocking [reverently] and [the door] will be opened to you. For everyone who keeps on asking receives; and he who keeps on seeking finds; and to him who keeps on knocking, [the door] will be opened.”

We all face the storms of life where we feel we just can’t run any longer. Times when keeping on no longer seems an option. Our spiritual legs are aching and we are out of breath. Our lungs hurt and the finish line is nowhere in sight. Storms are a fact of life. We need to know how to weather the storms and keep on keeping on until the end. I think about a beautiful bent tree covered road. Those trees did not just become bent. They were bent over by the storms of life – yet they are beautiful and strong after the storm has passed! You and I are to be like the strong tree, maybe bent, but now we can be used in a beautiful way by God! But how do we weather the storms life sends us?

Jesus taught us how to weather the storms of life through prayer and faith. Matthew 8:23-27 says Now when he got into the boat, his disciples followed him. And behold! A severe storm arose in the sea, so that the boat was covered by the waves; but he himself was sleeping. Then they went and woke him by saying, “Lord! Save us! We are perishing!” So he said to them, “Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?” After he got up, he rebuked the winds and the sea, and it became absolutely calm. Then the men were astonished, saying, “What kind of a man is this One, that even the winds and the sea obey him?”” 

Look again at verses 23, 24 “Now when he got into the boat, his disciples followed him. And behold! A severe storm arose in the sea, so that the boat was covered by the waves; but he himself was sleeping.”

A lot of Jesus’ disciples were already fisherman on the Sea of Galilee. They knew from experience this body of water was notorious for sudden storms. The storm on this occasion however was especially furious. The high winds churned into vicious waves. The waves swept over the disciples’ boat, spilling huge amounts of water into it, threatening to capsize it and to throw them into the sea. The disciples were very frightened.

While all this was happening Jesus was sleeping calmly in the back of the boat. We might wonder how He could sleep so calmly through such a storm while His disciples were so frightened. Here we see the genuine humanness and faith of the man Jesus. He got tired physically and needed sleep and He slept so calmly because He knew His heavenly Father was with Him and watching over Him. (Most of us can’t even sleep through the night for worry and fear has come upon us.) He simply put Himself into His Father’s hands, unafraid of whatever storm of life might overtake Him. If only we remained so calm and trusted in our heavenly Father’s providential care through our storms of life, right?

From the disciples we can learn to turn to Jesus in our storms of life (v. 25). What troubles or hardships or dangers have swept down upon us? How are we weathering them? Storms are neither pleasant nor easy to cope with! When the storms of life are crashing down around our ears, they are frightful and sometimes painful. What do we do then to batten down the hatches and bail out our sinking boat? We need to do what the disciples did–turn to Jesus. Pray: “Lord, I trust you to save me from drowning. I may feel like I am about to perish but I know you won’t let me!”

As Jesus was present with His disciples in their storm of life, so He is with us in our storms. He does not forsake us, leaving us to struggle alone and to drown. He is with us to hear our pleas for help. Even if our plea must be “help me Jesus to keep on keeping on through this storm!” (Notice I did not say deliver me from the storm, sometimes we must keep on keeping on through it in order to be changed!) Jesus however is there to answer us in the midst of our troubles. He tells us in Psalm 50:15: “Call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you will honor me.” So in our storms of life we must rely on Jesus to carry us through them and to deliver us from them.

This requires faith in Him and His promises. This is what the disciples lacked in their storm of life. They allowed themselves to become frightened. They saw themselves perishing in the sea. Think of this – they were fishermen, they knew how to weather a storm, yet this time, even though they were already equipped, they allowed fear to overcome instead of relying on what they had been previously trained to do. Jesus rebuked their littleness of faith in the face of danger. They had nothing to fear. Jesus was with them. He would not allow them to perish. He then acted to still their storm and to calm their fears. Thanks to Jesus the disciples’ storm of life was over. His almighty, powerful word was sufficient for the task. His word was authoritative. His word accomplished what He said and commanded. And His Word, the Bible, still speaks for Him today on our behalf. We however must speak His Word aloud over our storm!

How is our faith during our storms of life? In the face of hardships, troubles, and dangers is our faith strong and as firm as a rock? Are we determined to keep on asking, seeking, and knocking in the midst of our storm- trusting in God’s Word? Or, is our faith no better than the faith of the disciples on that day? Would Jesus rebuke us also for the littleness of our faith?” Would He say to us, “O you of little faith, why are you so afraid?”

How confident are we when we must undergo hardship? How strong are we when we have lost our job and bills are raining down on us? How firm are we when our children or spouse has gone astray? What will build up our faith so we are confident, strong, and firm is the power of  God’s Word. His Word! His Word is authoritative. His Word accomplishes what He commands and promises. He can speak God’s Word and still our storm of life. He can deliver us from danger with the power of His Word BUT you and I must speak out His Word over our storm!

Because of Jesus and the powerful, life saving and giving words He has spoken, we have no reason to be spiritually timid and of little faith. For Jesus with the perfect life He lived for us and the innocent death He died in our place has already delivered us from the power of death. Hell cannot claim us. Death and the grave cannot hold us! We who put our trust in Jesus and the Words of His promises will be able to keep on through any storm! Jesus has atoned for our sins with His Holy, precious blood. He has purchased with His blood the full forgiveness of our sins. (If you have not asked Him to do this for you, do it now!) He has delivered us from the storm of death and hell. We have no reason to be afraid.

Since Jesus has delivered us from the most vicious storm to threaten us — death and hell, we can be sure He will deliver us from the lesser storms of life that sweep over us. Whatever the storm of life may be, we must weather that storm through prayer and faith and keep on keeping on-keep asking, seeking, and knocking in faith believing Jesus and His Word!

Some of this content is from my book I’m A Sword Wielding Devil Slayer; Declaring the Word of God and Taking Back What The Devil Stole from Me!

The Emotional Roller-coaster – How To Get Off!

How to get off the emotional roller coasterEvery day of our life brings opportunities for our emotions to lead us on a roller coaster. Our emotions are truly one of the major struggles in our lives. We can however choose to be stable, steadfast, and determined instead of buying a ticket for this emotional roller coaster. If we allow our emotions to rule over us and to tell us how to act, then there is no way you and I will ever be the person God has intended us to be. We are not going to be able to let go of all of our emotions, however we can learn to control them instead of letting them determine how we feel!

As I said before opportunities will arise for us to allow our feelings to charter the course of our actions. We must begin to realize our feelings change from day to day, hour to hour, and like most people even from minute to minute. Not only do our feelings change they can even be giving us a shaded story or uncompleted truth. Have you ever entered a room and felt everybody was talking about you? Just because we feel everyone is talking about us does not mean they are! Satan loves to get us on how we feel. He wants us to feel that nobody understands us or appreciates us. He wants us to feel we are misunderstood or even mistreated. No matter how we feel we must realize that feeling this way does not mean it is true. If we want to be mature Christians and be all God intends us to be then we must be determined not to walk according to what we feel.

Our decisions must be based on what we know rather than on what we feel. We know what the Word of God instructs us to do in every situation of our life. If we don’t-then we must search it out and put our situation on the altar before God. I know it is hard not to let our feelings get in the way when we have been hurt or when we are upset. But this is the time we really need to seek the Lord and His Word to be led on how we act – not act on how we feel. I teach all the time, from Bible College Students to congregations, that we are to never be led by how we feel. Our emotions will lead us into the wrong direction 99% of the time. When we are hurt we must look to make sure we are not allowing offense to come in. Offense is the leading cause of our hurt emotions and it is a ploy of the enemy to steal, kill, and destroy us and our lives!

Look at what Jeremiah 17:9 says in the amplified “The heart is deceitful above all things, and it is exceedingly perverse and corrupt and severely, mortally sick!” Now we may not like this particular verse because it tells us exactly how our heart acts. Think about it – the last time you were in a real hard situation with someone else – was it not over feelings? Were you affected by something they did or said? Then I promise you the enemy took hold and turned your mind or heart to your feelings which according to the scripture we just read – deceived you and the other person. What was Satan’s goal in that situation between you and the other person? Well it is his number one goal for your life- John 10:10 –“The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy…” He wants to steal relationships and friendships from you by using your feelings, he wants to destroy these relationships so he can get you from them and get you by yourself so you can keep going over in your head how you feel and what they did! The ultimate goal is to kill you, little by little, step by step he uses your feelings to bring you closer to his goal. And before you know it friendships are gone, relationships are destroyed, and you have even left the church who was helping you to grow.

Emotions are wonderful, but we must not allow them to take precedence over wisdom and knowledge. We can control our emotions instead of letting them control us. We must seek the Lord and forgive whomever has hurt us and watch how God will restore us!

{Know someone who is facing hard times? The Drying Pot; And The Refining Fires Necessary To Become A Vessel Used By God}


How to Endure the Hardship You Are Facing

How to Endure the Hardship You Are Facing. Keys to victorious faith. Inspirational blog

I speak to people every day in person and through the internet who are facing situations they do not feel they can endure. The problem is most of the time Christians seem shocked at the trials they face. Their most asked question is why?  You must understand when you face a trial (and you will) that you must keep focused on the end of your challenge, not on the challenge itself. Your joy will be complete, the book of James instructs you, as you overcome your situation. You must hold on to your faith and not doubt the promises God has already give you! You will have victory IF you do not give up!

James instructs us that genuine faith transforms lives. We are to put our faith into action when we are faced with a trial. It’s easy to say we have faith until the “rubber meets the road” so to speak. Then the truth comes out. James gave us great tools to help us  face our trials and tribulations head on. The book of James is our how-to book, or let’s say our 4 step program to obtaining victory!

Step 1: You must remain faithful to the end no matter how hard your trial is.

Our true character is revealed when pressure is applied. We must see each trial as an opportunity to grow into the person God wants us to be. How many times have you stood at an altar in prayer and said, “God use me, I want to be a vessel for you, change me God.” Then the minute a trial comes we are rebuking every devil within a mile, when all the time it is God doing exactly what you have asked for – He IS using you, He is using this trial to work in you things He needs. And He is working out of you things He does not need; so “you” don’t get in the way! Now before you are ready to stop reading hold on there is a  great reward when you choose not to give up during your difficult times – you will lack NOTHING in the end! (James 1:4).

Step 2: As you stand strong and endure you WILL become stronger instead of weaker.

James says you must remain positive (righteous) during difficult times; he says you must “Consider it wholly joyful” (James 1:2). As you begin to remain positive and focus on the end and not the wind from the storm around you, you will begin to gain strength (James 1:3).  Let’s face it trials are not fun and they are hard. But as we endure the trial we will become a stronger person. Athletes who only want to compete against the weaker opponents may win trophies, but they are not getting any better as an athlete. A strong opponent is what makes them stronger and do better. So as we remain faithful to the end we will be stronger and better when it is all over!

Step 3. You must seek God and godly wisdom.

By seeking God you will be given the ability to make right choices during these trials (James 1:5). Difficulties will come but when you are faced with them you must without a doubt expect God to guide you through all your situations (James 1:6-8). He has already given you in His Word every answer you need. You must take the time to seek out what He has given you and stand on it. You must use the Word of God to determine how you will react. Notice verse 6 “it must be in faith that he asks with no wavering (no hesitating, no doubting).” This verse is talking about YOU! You must not waver, hesitate or doubt! You ask in faith and believe God WILL come through for you! Then you will be rewarded for maintaining your faith through your trial (James 1:12).

Step 4. Above all you ARE a conqueror through Christ Jesus! You are His prized possession and you will be given the strength to endure.

You are a gift from God through Jesus Christ. He keeps His promises and He wants you to enjoy life as you endure your difficulties (James 1:16-18). There are going to be trials and tribulations, temptations, and fear. But as we successfully overcome these adversities we become mature and of strong character. We must pray for wisdom as we endure. When we can finally embrace our human weakness and rely on God’s strength to overcome our trials and tribulations, God’s strength becomes our strength.

{Know someone who is facing hard times? The Drying Pot; And The Refining Fires Necessary To Become A Vessel Used By God}