Author Archives: lucretiashaw

About lucretiashaw

I am a Self-Published Author, Christian Blogger, and Inspirational Speaker. Founder of Women's Empowerment Group called "The Divine Truth which is designed to encourage, empower, inspire, and uplift women daily. My mission is to IMPACT lives on a daily basis to help them start walking in a different direction to get a different result.

Sharper Than Any Two-Edged Sword

“For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart”. Hebrews 4:12

Once GOD has spoken, there is nothing and no one else who can speak to counter the Word of GOD. It is impossible for any man, principality, or ruler to try and reverse what GOD has said over anyone’s life. There is no such thing recorded in the Scriptures. Every time GOD spoke, it was final and there was nothing to change it. Whether people were happy with it or not, they could not rise to say anything against GOD that could stand.

This is why, when we think of salvation and all of GOD’s promises, we should jump for joy because we know that GOD meant what HE said and HE has no intention of reversing it. When GOD spoke of salvation, HE meant that it would be eternal and it would be irreversible. Any person who calls upon the name of the LORD and makes GOD his or her refuge is saved, eternally. Whether the world likes it or not, there is nothing they can do to change it because GOD has had the final say.

The Word of GOD also comes in the form of the Bible, every book written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. What was written has been written under the approval of GOD and cannot be reversed. When you ready your Bible and you become exposed to your freedom in CHRIST and your identity as a son of GOD, it should compel you to jump up and live boldly because GOD said what HE said and HE meant what HE said.

The Word of GOD can serve as a mirror in our hearts, exposing our innermost thoughts and revealing to us the things in our lives that we need to discard in order to grow spiritually. The Word of GOD is able to counter every curse, every chain, and every form of bondage. The Word of GOD is alive in us, transforming our lives day in and day out. This is why the Christian life is a life of transformation. There is nothing and no one else who can make us grow spiritually except for GOD and HIS Word.

This is why we are called new creations (2 Corinthians 5:7), because the Word of GOD transforms us from being people of sin to being sons of GOD, ever- righteous and ever glorious.

#ConsultGODFirst #TheFAITHWalk #ThePowerofGOD #TheSpiritualBattle #DeliveranceIsMyTestimony #DiscoverYourPurpose

http://www.lucretiacargill.com

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The Light to Our Way

“Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way. Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path”-Psalm 119:104-105

GOD, through HIS WORD, has established the ways in which we should live as HIS children. As children of GOD, we have chosen to surrender to the will of GOD for our lives. In order to understand the will of GOD for our lives, we have to have an understanding of HIS WORD. In GOD’s WORD, HE has set up the way in which HE expects us to live and represent HIM as HIS children. It is through the WORD of GOD, we understand what it means to be led by the SPIRIT of GOD.

Being led by the SPIRIT of GOD does not mean that we get up and wander around aimlessly until we hear a voice or see a sign. That is a spiritually immature way to live. The more we study the WORD of GOD, the more we understand how GOD functions. We also come to understand the way GOD desires for us to function.

GOD loves us so much. HE made sure that we never have to guess what HE is thinking. In the Bible, HIS WORD, we are able to determine the ways of GOD versus the ways of the world. There will be instances in our life where the devil will come disguised as a source of light and he will try to influence us to do things that “seem” to be right.

When we remain rooted in the ways of GOD, we will be able to discern GOD’s way from the ways of the enemy that may “appear” to be right. The enemy never throws blatant evil at us and expects us to take the bait. No, that would be too simple. The devil disguises his trickery in things that we may think are harmless. Once we become ensnared, it becomes very hard for us to try and let go of the enemy’s hold over our lives.

This is why GOD presses it upon our hearts to follow HIS way of life. In the way of GOD, we become free from the wiles of the enemy. There is only freedom in obeying GOD’s decrees-freedom and joy. GOD’s laws serve as a lamp in our lives, saving us from the grasps of darkness and leading us into HIS glorious light. 

#ConsultGODfirst #TheFAITHWalk #ThePowerofGOD #TheSpiritualBattle #DeliveranceIsMyTestimony #DiscoverYourPurpose

http://www.lucretiacargill.com

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“Take Up Your Cross”

“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”-Luke 9:23

We have heard the phrase, “We all have our cross to bear”. Although, it is a nice quote, JESUS is the one that bore a cross for our sins. None of us can imagine what that was like for HIM and to take it lightly does a great disservice to the sacrifice that GOD and HIS Son made so that our sins could be forgiven. Think about the most difficult thing that you have ever done. Now think about the greatest pain that you ever endured. Now think about the greatest sacrifice that you have ever made on behalf of other people. Now imagine doing the exact same thing for everyone that has and will ever lived.

This is the sacrifice that CHRIST made so that we may live. What does GOD ask in exchange for this sacrifice? That we take up the cross daily and follow HIM. What do you do every single day that you are alive? Can you honestly say that you take up the cross every day?

We all have doubts and anxieties, worries and regrets. The LORD asks that we put these aside and follow HIM. Given the hectic schedules and hassles that all of us must endure, this can be a very difficult task. It is hard to keep our mind on one thing when we have so many things to distract us. But we must try. We must make all of our efforts to take up the cross and go after JESUS.

I find it remarkable how wise and how selfless JESUS was in HIS last moments. HE does not think of HIMSELF, HE is teaching until HIS last breath, and HE shows how much HE cares through HIS actions and WORDS. We must hope that we can be a little bit more like HIM. How can you take up your cross and follow HIM? Ask yourself this question, but more importantly, ask HIM. How can we take up our cross and follow JESUS CHRIST? Ask ourselves this question, but more importantly, ask the LORD.

#ConsultGODFirst #TheFAITHWALK #ThePowerofGOD #TheSpiritualBattle #DeliveranceisMyTestimony #DiscoverYourPurpose

http://www.lucretiacargill.com

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JESUS, the Good SHEPHERD

Most assuredly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he who enters by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the doorkeeper opens, and the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.” Jesus used this illustration, but they did not understand the things which He spoke to them. Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives His life for the sheep. John 10:1-11

The True SHEPHERD

Given the obvious presence of metaphors in the above Scripture text, it is easy for us simply to focus on the analogies being drawn by the LORD. But JESUS is doing more than comparing Himself to either the door of a sheepfold or to a shepherd. He is teaching HIS followers about HIS legitimate claim to lead, provide, and protect. As we study the LORD’s WORD’s, we will find comfort in both HIS knowledge of HIS people and HIS willingness to sacrifice Himself for those who follow HIM. If anything, this should motivate us to faithfulness.  

Stressing HIS legitimate right to lead and protect HIS people, JESUS declared, “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who does not enter the sheepfold by the door, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber” (John 10:1) Here, JESUS referenced the sheepfold- a place designed to provide safety to the sheep, but HE does so with the intent of contrasting Himself with those who seek to do harm to the flock. Unlike the thieves or robbers, the shepherd is able to enter the sheepfold properly-through the door. When he approaches, the doorkeeper will allow the legitimate shepherd to enter, and that individual will gather his sheep and lead them to the fields.

JESUS is a good SHPEHERD; faithful disciples will hear (understand and heed) his voice; they will not listen to strangers (false teachers) who would lead them astray. People, thus, indicate whose sheep they are by whose voice they follow! The voice of JESUS is heard through HIS WORD which has been revealed to us by inspired men.

The Door of the Sheep

To declare JESUS to be the door of the sheep is to say HE is the only portal to safety. Those who looked for safety from any other religious leader looked in vain. To emphasize HIS concern for HIS followers, JESUS contrasted what HE offered with what others sought to take. He declared: “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have it more abundantly”(John 10:10). With these words, JESUS was not simply issuing a proverb. Instead, HE was developing the contrast between those who would harm the sheep and the One who provided care and protection.

Unlike the hirelings who would flee when danger approached (John 10:12), JESUS- the Good SHEPHERD- would willingly sacrifice “HIS life for the sheep”. This could certainly be done if a shepherd willingly stood between his flock and a wild beast (1 Samuel 17:34-36).  But JESUS was willing to do much, much more. Far from being accidental, JESUS death is precisely what qualifies HIM to be the good SHEPHERD-a point presupposed in Hebrews 13:20, which acknowledges JESUS to be ‘that Great SHEPHERD of the sheep” . JESUS is clearly more concerned for HIS flock than any hireling could be (John 10:13). HE did not flee from danger; HE willingly faced death.

The Knowledge of the Sheep

JESUS legitimacy, unlike that of the religious leaders of HIS day, is perhaps best seen in HIS knowledge of HIS followers. Just as the shepherd knows the animals under his care, so JESUS knows and is known by HIS disciples. Stressing this point, HE stated, “I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own” (John 10:14). This knowledge is neither shallow or overstated. There is a communion existing between the disciples of the LORD and the LORD himself of understanding, love, fellowship, and regard that may properly be compared, in degree, at least, wit that existing between the FATHER and the SON”.

Because of this knowledge, JESUS was motivated to “lay down HIS life for the sheep”. Lest anyone think JESUS died for only one race of people, HE made clear HIS death was for many. He noted, “And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear my voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd” (John 10:16). HIS death makes it possible for all men-both Jews and Gentiles-to be saved.

Let’s TALK it OVER

What does Jesus call the one who does not enter the sheepfold by the door (John 10:1)?

Who enters the sheepfold by the door (John 10:2)?

Why do the sheep follow the shepherd (John 10:4)?

Why will sheep not follow a stranger (John 10:5)? 

Why does the thief come (John 10:10)?

What does the good shepherd do for the sheep (John 10:11)?

#ConsultGODFirst #TheFaithWalk #ThePowerofGOD #TheSpiritualBattle #DeliveranceisMyTestimony #DiscoverYourPurpose

http://www.lucretiacargill.com

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Prayer Is The Answer

Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms.-James 5:13

Whether one is facing a physical crisis or a spiritual one, prayer is the answer. Those who pray diligently declare how desperately they need GOD’s help. Through prayer, we acknowledge we cannot make it on our own; through prayer we turn our struggles over to GOD. Prayer is depicted and discussed throughout Scripture.

In the Old Testament, we read about men like Manoah, the father of Samson, who prayed and asked GOD for guidance: “O my LORD, please let the Man of GOD whom YOU sent come to us again and teach us what we shall do for the child who will be born” (Judges 13:8). Others like Jabez, prayed to GOD for personal blessings and protection. He asked, “Oh, that YOU would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, and that YOUR hand would be with me, and that YOU would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!”(1 Chronicles 4:10).

Another individual who prayed was the prophet Elijah. Although, he was involved in several miraculous events, including calling fire down from heaven ( 1Kings 18:36-38). In this verse, James described him as “a man with a nature like ours” (5:17) and used him to illustrate the power of prayer. The New Testament also contains numerous examples of individuals who relied upon prayer.  Prayer is necessary if one wishes to rely upon GOD, and when it is done properly, it can be very powerful.

Reasons to Pray

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to GOD” (Philippians 4:6). No matter the circumstances we face, GOD cares. “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of GOD, that HE may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon HIM, for HE cares for you” (1 Peter 5:6-7) Whether one is suffering or rejoicing, GOD must not be far from that person’s mind. We pray because GOD in HIS providence can provide the relief we desperately seek; we sing because GOD is to be praised for the good things we enjoy in this life.

GOD continues to care for HIS people and answer their prayers through HIS providence. The result of faithful and trusting prayer is presented in James 5:15-16: “And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the LORD will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.” Prayer is powerful and an effective tool! This does not mean that all prayers are answered in the way we desire. (Matthew 26:39; Hebrews 5:7-9). Nevertheless, GOD is listening and willing to act in accordance wit HIS will (1 John 5:14-15).

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Saving a SOUL

As Christians, we have to reach out to those who have fallen away. “Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins“(James 5:19-20).

When one is lost, others should be concerned enough to search and attempt to rescue their brother or sister (Luke 15: 4-10). I was taught that we are to seek and save the lost. Not only should we be concerned about the saving of our soul, but others as well. It feels good  to know when someone you have encountered become to the knowledge of truth and their soul is saved!!! All glory to GOD!

“Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted.” Galatians 6:1 The sinner who is restored will be saved from death and forgiven. Prayer is certainly more than a meaningless ritual. I’ve learned that when waiting for GOD’s answer as you face difficulties, you develop patience.

#ConsultGODfirst #TheFaithWalk #ThePowerofGOD #TheSpiritualBattle #DeliveranceisMytestimony #DiscoverYourPurpose

http://www.lucretiacargill.com

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Be Patient

Therefore be patient, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. See how the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, waiting patiently for it until it receives the early and latter rain”. You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand.” James 5:7-8

Our world is filled with individuals who want to be served. Although, this mentality is pervasive today, it is not new. Jesus was once approached by the mother of James and John and asked if He would grant them positions of prominence in His kingdom (Matthew 20:20-21). Rather than granting her request, Jesus described the importance of serving others: “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them. Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave-just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many”(Matthew 20:25-28).

Despite Jesus insistence on serving others, individuals today continue to struggle to secure positions of prominence. If you look at it, in the modern workplace, it is snot uncommon to find employees cutting corners in hopes of receiving a raise or promotion. Rather than helping their coworkers, their only desire is to get ahead. This is the same self-reliant spirit James rebuked when he warned those who consistently made plans without considering the position of God. “Instead,” James advised, “you ought to say, ‘If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that” -James 4:15. Dependence upon God is not optional.

Ultimately, it is a command to rely upon God. This, of course, is what every Christian should seek to do.

Reasons to Weep

Those with wealth have a tendency to believe they are self-sufficient. Rather than encourage those with wealth to rejoice and enjoy their bounty, James did the opposite: “Come now, you rich, weep and howl for your miseries that are coming upon you! James 5:1. Although, individuals who give their lives to accumulating physical treasures do not often think about the negative aspects of their pursuit, consequences indeed exist. The possession of wealth does not remove the burdens of life. Instead, it simply brings other challenges to the forefront. That’s why Jesus warned, “Assuredly, I say to you that it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 19:23).

By instructing the rich to “weep” and “howl” over the challenges that confronted them and James was bidding them to turn to God for help. One of the primary challenges faced by the wealthy is to understand that money has instrumental rather than intrinsic value. To say this differently, money is important only insofar as it can be used to purchase the necessities of life and to facilitate good things.  To think otherwise and assume money is valuable for its own sake leads to both covetousness and idolatry.

Those who make the mistake are guilty of what Paul warned Timothy to avoid: “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows’ (1 Timothy 6:10). Perhaps the greatest mistake the wealthy can make, however, is to fail to understand the temporary nature of their riches. In James 5:2-3, it states, “Your riches are corrupted, and your garments moth-eaten. Your gold and silver are corroded, and their corrosion will be a witness against you and will eat your flesh like fire. You have heaped up treasure in the last days”.

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Individuals who seek security by gathering riches are looking to the wrong source. What a tragedy to spend one’s final moments seeking physical items that will be destroyed! Clearly, we must live for more than this physical world.

It is easy for individuals to focus on their own abilities and resources so much that they forget to consider the God who provides every good thing we enjoy (James 1:17). Rather than trusting in riches, which are fleeting, we must patiently depend upon the eternal God.

#ConsultGodFirst #TheFaithWalk #ThePowerofGod #TheSpiritualBattle #DeliveranceIsMytestimony #DiscoverYourPurpose

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Pride and Humility

You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures. -James 4:3

What is pride? A Biblical definition of pride is defined as a feeling of deep pleasure or satisfaction in an achievement, an accomplishment, or in someone else or something else but it’s also been described as conceit, egotism, vanity, vainglory, all over one’s own appearance or status in life and not just something that’s been accomplished. It is an inwardly directed emotion that can easily offend others and carries with it a connotation that displays an inflated sense of one’s own worth or personal status and typically makes one feel a sense of superiority over others and can easily make someone look condescendingly at others. Pride in one’s nation or in one’s own children is somewhat different from that of having pride in themselves (Proverbs 17:6) but even that can self-attribute a sense of worth that is easily overvalued, overinflated, and be unrealistic.

What is Humility? Humility is the quality of being humble. Many people have the wrong idea about God, the Bible and humility, or being humble. They think being humble means groveling in front of others or thinking they are no good and others are better. That’s not what the Bible says. God says when you are humble, you are free from pride and arrogance. You know that in your flesh you are inadequate, yet you also know who you are in Christ.

Desiring Pleasure

Individuals often seek instant gratification, which is why sinful behavior is so appealing. Although, the “wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23), as far as participants are concerned, the pleasure experienced during the moment outweighs any negative consequences. This mentality was true to some. “Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members?” James 4:1. The terrifying linkage of evil desires and their deeds could have been avoided by some with an approach that is quite simple: prayer. Prayer that is consistent with true faith will not make selfish requests”. If people turn to God with selfish requests, those requests would be denied. “You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures”-James 4:3

It is not that God is unconcerned with those who pray to Him, but He is concerned with more than our momentary whims or desires. We must be careful not to fall in love with the world and its allurements (1 John 2:15-17).

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Friendship With the World

Just as one must choose between the “wisdom that is from above” and the alternative, so one must decide between allegiance to God and allegiance to the world. Leaving little doubt about the necessity of this decision. James wrote: “Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself and enemy of God” James 4:4

To stress animosity that existed between the people and God, by seeking friendship with the world they are, in effect, committing ‘spiritual adultery’ and making themselves enemies of God. What is absolutely clear, however, is that one cannot pursue the world and please God. Because God desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:4), it should not surprise us to find God concerned when individuals befriend the world.

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Practicing Humility

The solution to worldliness and the strife associated with it is to give oneself completely to God. ‘Therefore, submit to God Resist the devil and he will flee from you James 4:7. This submission requires individuals to live according to the “wisdom that is from above”. Too, it demands a dependence upon God that can hardly be accomplished by those who harbor envy and selfishness. Nevertheless, when put into practice, submission allows us to grow closer to God. This occurs because, in our humility, we are seeking to be a friend to God rather than to the world.

I don’t want to leave the impression that it would be easy to turn away from the world. In fact, it would be quite difficult. Such a change would necessarily be accompanied by lamentation and mourning as described in James 4:9. A truly repentant person not only changes their attitudes and actions but experiences emotional pain when they come to understand the effects of their envy and pride on God an others.  Nothing short of complete humility will suffice, but those who seek to humble themselves before God will eventually be exalted (James 4:10)

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Although, some individuals live their lives based on pleasure they can obtain, such should not be the case with Christians. As Hebrews 11:25 reveals, the pleasures of sin are passing. No matter how alluring sin might be, Christians must look to the greater reward offered by God. By choosing to submit to God, one is simultaneously choosing to resist the devil. This does not mean the devil will no longer trouble or tempt the one who seeks to serve God, but his ability to influence and tempt that person will be greatly hindered. As you serve God, be on guard against the pull of envy and selfishness-two of the devil’s strongest tactics.

#ConsultGodFirst #TheFaithWALK #ThePowerofGod #TheSpiritualBattle #DeliveranceisMytestimony #DiscoveryourPurpose

http://www.lucretiacargill.com