Level Up

Listen to “Phase II” by – Eddie DeGarmo – Phase II (1990)” on YouTube

Don’t ya think it’s time to level up in your faith? Personally I do.

I recall, back when I was a teenager I came to my own personal decision that there had to be something more to this “faith in God” thing.

I asked God’s Spirit to come on in & change me how He wanted to. Christ became my my Lord and I began developing a relationship with Him, mainly by reading The Bible on my own.

Daily we gotta seek Him, His Way & constantly progress, grow.

In His hands we are able to move on to the next phase and level up. ☝

Ship In A Storm With Serpent Below

I just finished day 2 of the @YouVersion plan ‘The Calm: Live Each Day In The Calm Amid The Storm’. (Check it out here:
http://bible.com/r/3CX) much I what you’ll see here is from that reading.

Thoughts and feelings will come like waves on the sea and seek to capsize me.

When these thoughts and feelings flood my heart, mind and soul like water into a boat, i’m barely able to stay afloat.

With honest thoughts and feelings like that it’s hard to face whatever goliath of a storm we are sure is ahead. There are times when we try to close off a bad day only to wake to some of the same obstacle course.

One thing i know for sure is that sometimes our radar is off.

Life sometimes hardens our lives and causes us to drop into defense mode.

  • A strange sense that the there is an abominable sea monster lurking beneath the surface, circling around and waiting for an opportune moment to emerge from the depths and ruin our lives.
  • Make no mistake, don’t underestimate the enemy. There is a wounded serpent looking for children to bit.
  • Like me you may have the feeling that since you struggle with anxiety there must be something “wrong” with you.
  • I’ve even been told by people posing as Christ’s body, “If you were a good Christian you wouldn’t have this problem.”
  • If we struggle with the idea that having anxious feelings or thoughts means that we are failing or that we are a failure. THAT is something worth fighting. That is something we should defend against.
  • We all have times of a subtle dread of what seems to be inevitable and the temptation to do whatever we need to do to avoid dealing with it is a common bond everyone shares, if we are honest with ourselves & each other.
  • This avoidance can take the form of keeping distracted with social media, projects, tasks, to-do lists, shopping, self-medicating, you name it. Even healthy habits or good deeds can become our source or makeshift coping mechanism.

Jesus taught that we would have trouble in this world.

“Each day would have trouble enough of its own.”

Not only will the world bring us trouble, but we have trouble residing within.

Even when we have believed on the Lord Jesus Christ and accepted Him as our Lord and Savior, our sinful nature remains and that nature is at enmity with the Spirit of God.

We are still human. I wrote a blog post comparing our life to “Weekend At Burnie’s” along those lines.

So we don’t have to go anywhere to find trouble. Trouble is within and without.

I saw a t-shirt that said, “I don’t find trouble it finds me.”

Sure, we can easily get ourselves into trouble & make some of the same mistakes we’ve made before in our lives but regardless there are going to be other situations (people, places things) we encounter & go through that are not consequences and are completely unsolicited.

This is enough to make anyone anxious!

Is there any hope?!

YES! If we are in Christ, He is in us and we are in Him. Because He lives inside of us, there can be calm, amidst the storm, within.

The truth of God and His Word is not only our anchor in the storm. In Christ we can actually find calm in the storm.

In Psalm 103 David sets a good example for us as he instructs his soul to praise the LORD and bless His name.

He reminds himself who he is and reminds himself not to forget who God is.

It helps if we too remind ourselves & each other who we really are & who God really is.

The struggle is real, so is God.

Look at Psalm 103. Although David, who was no stranger to struggles, sin & real life situations, although he was aware of his sin and his weakness, rather than fret and worry, we see him worship.

We can learn from his example how to train our hearts and minds in the storm.

Throughout the Bible we hear God remind us tgat we need self-control (self discipline), we need to train, we need to equip ourselves to fight the good fight, guard our hearts.

In fact, the way to care for our hearts is by caring for our minds. We must keep our minds fixed on the truth of God’s Word and HIS abilities. When we do, we will begin to experience the calm of Christ.

PSALMS 103:1‭-‬14 AMP

Bless and affectionately praise the Lord , O my soul, And all that is [deep] within me, bless His holy name. Bless and affectionately praise the Lord , O my soul, And do not forget any of His benefits; Who forgives all your sins, Who heals all your diseases; Who redeems your life from the pit, Who crowns you [lavishly] with lovingkindness and tender mercy; Who satisfies your years with good things, So that your youth is renewed like the [soaring] eagle. The Lord executes righteousness And justice for all the oppressed.

He made known His ways [of righteousness and justice] to Moses, His acts to the children of Israel.

The Lord is

  • merciful and
  • gracious,
  • Slow to anger and
  • abounding in compassion and
  • lovingkindness.

He will not always strive with us, Nor will He keep His anger forever. He has not dealt with us according to our sins [as we deserve], Nor rewarded us [with punishment] according to our wickedness.

(Personal note here- remember GRACE is goving us what we don’t deserve & mercy is not giving us what we do deserve)

Ps.103 continued-

For as the heavens are high above the earth, So great is His lovingkindness toward those who fear and worship Him [with awe-filled respect and deepest reverence].

As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us.

Just as a father loves his children, So the Lord loves those who fear and worship Him [with awe-filled respect and deepest reverence]. For He knows our [mortal] frame; He remembers that we are [merely] dust.
PSALMS 103:1‭-‬14 AMP
https://bible.com/bible/1588/psa.103.1-14.AMP

Ponder God’s faithfulness, His righteousness, through it all and proclaim it.
PSALMS 96:1‭-‬13 AMP

O sing to the Lord a new song; Sing to the Lord , all the earth! Sing to the Lord , bless His name; Proclaim good news of His salvation from day to day. Declare His glory among the nations, His marvelous works and wonderful deeds among all the peoples. For great is the Lord and greatly to be praised; He is to be feared above all gods. For all the gods of the peoples are [worthless, lifeless] idols, But the Lord made the heavens. Splendor and majesty are before Him; Strength and beauty are in His sanctuary. Ascribe to the Lord , O families of the peoples, Ascribe to the Lord glory and strength. Ascribe to the Lord the glory of His name; Bring an offering and come into His courts.

Worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness; Tremble [in submissive wonder] before Him, all the earth.

Say among the nations, “The Lord reigns; Indeed, the world is firmly and securely established, it shall not be moved;

He will judge and rule the people with fairness.”

Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice;

Let the sea roar, and all the things it contains;

Let the field be exultant, and all that is in it.

Then all the trees of the forest will sing for joy Before the Lord , for He is coming, For He is coming to judge the earth. He will judge the world with righteousness And the peoples in His faithfulness.
PSALMS 96:1‭-‬13 AMP
https://bible.com/bible/1588/psa.96.1-13.AMP

PSALMS 42:1‭-‬11 AMP

As the deer pants [longingly] for the water brooks, So my soul pants [longingly] for You, O God. My soul (my life, my inner self) thirsts for God, for the living God.

When will I come and see the face of God? My tears have been my food day and night, While they say to me all day long, “Where is your God?” These things I [vividly] remember as I pour out my soul; How I used to go along before the great crowd of people and lead them in procession to the house of God [like a choirmaster before his singers, timing the steps to the music and the chant of the song], With the voice of joy and thanksgiving, a great crowd keeping a festival.

Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become restless and disturbed within me?

Hope in God and wait expectantly for Him, for I shall again praise Him For the help of His presence.

O my God, my soul is in despair within me [the burden more than I can bear]; Therefore I will [fervently] remember You from the land of the Jordan And the peaks of [Mount] Hermon, from Mount Mizar.

Deep calls to deep at the [thundering] sound of Your waterfalls; All Your breakers and Your waves have rolled over me. Yet the Lord will command His lovingkindness in the daytime, And in the night His song will be with me, A prayer to the God of my life. I will say to God my rock, “Why have You forgotten me? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?”

As a crushing of my bones [with a sword], my adversaries taunt me, While they say continually to me, “Where is your God?” Why are you in despair, O my soul? Why have you become restless and disquieted within me? Hope in God and wait expectantly for Him, for I shall yet praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God.
PSALMS 42:1‭-‬11 AMPhttps://bible.com/bible/1588/psa.42.1-11.AMP

Although i’ve personalized this these references & main thoughts are from the @YouVersion plan ‘The Calm: Live Each Day In The Calm Amid The Storm’. Check it out here:
http://bible.com/r/3CX

Extra:

You may also enjoy my post Weekend At Burnie’s

(https://tombeetlebailey.wordpress.com/2016/04/03/burning-holy-spirit-weekend-at-burnies/)

Finding The Calm

This devoted thought is from,

“The Calm: Live Each Day In The Calm Amid The Storm” • Devotional
(https://bible.com/reading-plans/12309/day/1?segment=0)

THE STORM

Many of us spend numerous hours of the day worrying and fretting over things we have little or no control over.

Our stomachs churn, our minds spin, and our hearts hurt.

We can’t enjoy a beautiful spring morning, a walk in the park, working at a job we love, or being with the people we love (as much as we may try) because of the anxiety we are experiencing or the angst we are anticipating.

What is it that we are afraid of?

(Perhaps we can’t even put our finger on it or can’t narrow it down to just one thing)

Rather than peacefully walking forward through the day confident in God, resting in His character, trusting in His power, and believing in His Word, we are overcome with worry and fear instead.

(If you have read this far and can completely identify with this yet you haven’t seen a doctor yet, please consider. Our physical & mental health should not effect our lives so much, but it can. We are not just spiritual beings with a soul but being human we’ve got to balance our mind & body too.)

Some of us may be so accustomed to feeling this way that we don’t even realize how much it impedes our boldness, our energy, and our focus. We don’t see how much it impacts our earthly relationships and ultimately our relationship with God. We live tossed to and fro by the waves of our flesh which hampers our ability to live fully in the Spirit of Christ and enjoy communion with our heavenly Father each day.

I can hear Jesus lovingly say, “Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?” It was after He said these words to the disciples that “he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm.”

THE CALM

Can we learn to find calm by faith amidst the waves of sin and the storms of emotion within our hearts?

It may seem impossible, but there is hope, and there is comfort to be found.

💠First, know that you are not alone and that this is not any surprise to your Lord.

He is with you in it all, and He loves you.

💠Second, know that you are not a failure in His sight because you struggle with this. It is an age-old challenge for all of God’s people. Even the great. The Lord told Joshua, a valiant leader in Israel who followed the Lord fully, to not be afraid.

💠Finally, remember that with Christ nothing is impossible. He is able.

When we understand that we are weak and learn how to look to Christ and cling to Him, we will begin to experience Christ as our calm.

MATTHEW 8:23‭-‬27 (AMPLIFIED VERSION)

When He got into the boat, His disciples followed Him. And suddenly a violent storm arose on the sea, so that the boat was being covered by the waves; but Jesus was sleeping. And the disciples went and woke Him, saying,

“Lord, save us, we are going to die!”

He said to them, “Why are you afraid, you men of little faith?” Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was [at once] a great and wonderful calm [a perfect peacefulness].

The men wondered in amazement, saying, “What kind of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?”

MATTHEW 8:23‭-‬27 AMP
https://bible.com/bible/1588/mat.8.23-27.AMP

I hope & pray that while in whatever storm we may find ourselves in we’ll call on Jesus.

This was just day 1 of the @YouVersion plan ‘The Calm: Live Each Day In The Calm Amid The Storm’. If you want to continue with this 3 day plan check it out here:
http://bible.com/r/3CX

In Christ and for His sake, beetle

🎼🔉🔊🎵Extra Music For Our Ears 🎶🥁🎹🎸

Band: Scarecrow and Tinmen Song: You Are My Son

Another song i’ve used often by Phil Laeger’s arr. Of Keith Green’s song, When I Hear The Praises Start”

Something Else Is Going on Here (say it with music – Sweet Comfort Band)

Just trust Him, not yourself.

Grace is giving us what we don’t deserve.

Mercy is, not giving you what you do deserve.

Fall deeper in “Love” with Christ.

G.R.A.C.E. God’s riches at Christ’s Expense.

You can also check out, “Something Else Is Going on Here” by Sweet Comfort Band on Amazon Music
https://music.amazon.com/albums/B00CBBUGQE?trackAsin=B00CBBUIDA&ref=dm_sh_UIYpiWcPV760c0VBqbCN0XDjt

For Christ’s sake, beetle

Say It With Music (Addey by DeGarmo & Key)

“Addey” Lyrics
by DeGarmo & Key from the album “Rock Solid: Absolutely Live”

Intro: “Want to do a song about a girl. Jesus Christ called her name – she resisted that voice, and consequently she threw away a lot of valuable years of her life. Her name was Addey.

Addey’s a cat, she’s a fool, she’s a star, she’s a queen,
She lives in a trap down on 3rd, never heard, never seen,
Oh, she’s desperate for a way to get out; she don’t know what “out” means,
Addey, don’t you be so afraid; it’s not as bad as it seems.

She walks ‘cross the floor, toward the door, to stairs to the street,
She calls up a cab for downtown, there’s a man she must meet,
Oh, the thought of what she’s got to go through makes her cry to be free,
Addey, wipe those tears from your eyes; you wouldn’t want him to see.

So she puts on a face with a smile as she walks through the door,
She thinks of her folks and her home, and what she came there for,
She tells the man, after this time she won’t be back for more,
He says, “Huh, Addey, don’t you be a fool; you said that time and time before.”

It’s alright,
I can hear him say…

Can I hear you say….

She runs down the street, in the heat, down past Nowhere Cafe.
She drops to her knees ‘neath the trees, but she don’t know how to pray,
Ooh, Addey, there’s no life in that rig, why don’t you throw it away?
Trust in God for a new kind of life,
Honey, he won’t lead you astray, never.

You know, there was a time in my life when I was just like Addey. You see, I hear Jesus calling my name, but I thought that once I gave my life to Jesus, that the party was over. I did not realise that once you once you trust Jesus and he comes into your life, that’s when life begins. There’ll come a day in your life when your old friends will come to you, after you’ve asked Jesus to come in, and they’ll say: “You know, you have been a Christian now for almost six weeks, now aren’t you just about to get tired of that religious stuff?” That’s gonna be your first opportunity to reach down deep to the love and the strength that Jesus will give at that opportunity. You look them in the face and, by the power of the Holy Spirit, you simply say something like this…

Nah

Nah

Nah

Nah…”

The Advantage of Being Anxious

Anxiety. For each person it is a little different.

Have you ever thought about the advantage of being anxious?

WHAT?

Flip things around for a moment.

God’s got this.

We are all driven to react and respond in various ways to different situations and circumstances.

Too often we feel trapped, chained or stuck in a rut or even locked in a crushing vice that limits our options. The pressures get tighter & heavier with each breath and step we strive & try to take.

There are many devices that can divide, SPLIT OUR MINDS & deceive us. I heard a guy say, “I drank to drown my sorrows but my sorrows learned to do the back stroke.” Self medication only offers a temporary solution to an eternal problem.

Being only human we all need and actively look for an escape of some sorts in the hope that we will ‘feel’ better, only to find that what we tried has tied us up and only added to our feelings & the reality that real life sucks.

Like me, perhaps you also feel that you just can’t get away no matter how far we go or how hard we try. What we try often tries us, takes us to our physical, mental and spiritual limits. Wherever we go, whatever we do our anxiety is still at the door step just waiting to fog up our minds & weigh us down.

We seem to have involuntary actions, habits, self reliance mechanism that take over that we think will help us cope, just to find out that the more we cling to things we think will help us deal with the shit in our lives the more we ‘feel’ captive and incapable of overcoming even the little things that should or could be bearable. We may try to just live in denial & push through but we really can’t deny, it’s no surprise after all, it takes a certain amount of manure to cause things to grow.

Perhaps you’ve heard it said, “Nothing can drive you nuts unless you hand-over the keys.”

Maybe the keys have already been handed over to someone of something and that ‘thing’ is already in the driver seat.

Well, stop if you will for just a few minutes and take a listen to this:

Click here to 👉 listen👈

Full link:(https://encounteringpeace.us18.list-manage.com/track/click?u=a4f80c0b3b028bd95c5b1ea28&id=256fa688ef&e=574a7e74a8)

Life is just too hard sometimes; however, I believe God has given all of us some automatic resources to get through this life, right up until the end. And then, just when you think it is all over the struggle stops and these old earth suits we are in are stripped away and we enter into a completely new environment all together.

Even still, while we remain alive and in this world, God gives us the resources & abilities to live, face each day, each moment, each trial until that final day.

You blink, breathe, swallow, sneeze and do many things without even thinking about it. Involuntary muscle & actions take place throughout our lives. They are not numbered or counted. We don’t strive to reach so many of them like some do with a fit bit trying to reach the optimal steps for any particular day.

Wouldn’t it be nice if our anxiety could all be turned into an advantage that actually benifits us rather than bury us?

What if we ask our creator to re-create us. There is no question that we all need rest & recreation but what we really really need is to have our deepest desires shifted from what we think matters to what really matters.

You matter.

God matters.

People matter.

Life matters.

But how can we know & show all that if it is not first shown to us and we actually see it & know it on a personal level.

I’m living proof that life’s struggles are real but i am also living proof that God’s Holy Spirit is not only real but able to equip us to see opposition as an opportunity.

I’ll restate that,

“Wouldn’t it be nice if our anxiety could all be turned into an advantage that actually benifits us rather than bury us?”

It can, but don’t take my word for it. Take God at His Word. Our creator has abilities we are just not capable of and in our darkest times He is there to not only shed light on things but cast pure, full, broad beams of light on which way we are to go.

May you not try to structure a prayer with the right words or just read one I or someone else types out to be read here.

Just let Him (The True Creator) read your mind.

I’ve personally had to take my hands off the steering wheel. Literally, everyday I have to take everything I bring to life and surrender.

Once we recognize what is debilitating us it affords us the chance to shift our focus off our disability & fully rely on God’s ability to turn anxiety into an advantage, to drive us in the right direction, to our knees.

Why do we wait until we are at the end of our rope, our rock bottom until we really get help? It’s because many times only when we are in our darkest hour we come to grip with our inability to save ourselves & begin to let God take over.

If you feel like you’ve messed up God’s plan for you let me reassure & remind you, my beautiful friend, you are not that powerful.

Drivin’ by Jesus for Christ’s sake, beetle

Just calm down now…

You are not alone.

👉Transfer Your Anxiety👈 listen

(https://mailchi.mp/encounteringpeace/your-encounter-meditation-from-philippians-46?e=574a7e74a8)