GRETNESS IS MADE TO BE SHARED

jesus smiling

We are all familiar with lines from Ecclesiastes 3. The first verse reads: “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” As we know, some things happen immediately, and some things take longer. It took the Israelites 40 years to get to the promised land. I’m praying that 2018 is my 41st! Promised Land here I come!

 

But guess what. When God’s people went into the land God gave them, there were giants and mighty kings they had to battle. And no one could fully enjoy the fullness of what this new land promised until everyone was in!

 

That’s how I feel about this upcoming year. We, as individuals in the body of Christ, are stepping into a new place, a wonderful place. We are leaving behind what is past and not letting it dictate or captivate our futures. We have places to go, people to see, new adventures, new delights, and new encounters with greatness.

 

But we are not alone. We need to stretch out our prayer to encompass more individuals in the body of Christ, reaching out in our empathy, reaching higher in our faith. People desperately need our sincere, Christ-inspired prayer, as well as our giftings in our many other fields of service.

 

The Lord Jesus will show us as individuals and groups, how to do the Father’s will in every aspect of our lives, and let’s expect an amazing year.

 

Love, Carolyn

 

You can get my books on Amazon:

 

https://www.amazon.com/WINGS-JOURNEY-JESUS-Carolyn-Molica-ebook/dp/B01HLPCQPS/ref=as_sl_pc_as_ss_li_til?tag=jmbcsds-20&linkCode=w00&linkId=17df1629f3a0495e0e4e159e6c208129&creativeASIN=B01HLPCQPS

 

 

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STARTING THE NEW YEAR FREE AND CLEAR

HAPPY NEW YEAR

Want to start 2018 free and clear of emotional, mental, and perhaps even spiritual baggage? Then do this exercise. It will surprise you in several ways and will set you on a clean and happy path for the upcoming year.

Thanks Margo for sharing this with me so many years ago!

 

STEP 1: Make a list of every grief, major or minor, that others caused you this past year. List names and incidents. The more details, the more liberated you’ll get.

 

STEP 2: Add to the list any past hurts people have caused you that are still bugging you.

 

STEP 3: Go through the list and categorize the grievances. I’ve listed some of the categories I’ve addressed over the years, as examples to get you started:

-egotistical people not caring about other people’s feelings

-good people letting evil people bully them

-people getting angry when confronted with the truth and trying to hide from it or ignore it

-people who use their power or position to manipulate others

-broken promises and deliberate deceptions – outright lying

-people who know they need help but don’t seek it

-people who pervert the truth and lead others that way

 

STEP 4: For each of the categories ask yourself, “Have I ever acted this way toward God?”

 

When I did this exercise for the first time, this fourth step was a great awakening. And every year since has been a huge refreshing. I realize I am just as much of a sinner as anyone who has offended me. I acknowledge what God has forgiven me for and then I know I have no right to withhold forgiveness from anyone else.

 

So, I let them go. I am for-giving, in favor of giving those I need to forgive over to God because I can’t deal with them as well as He can. I make an effort to forgive because it’s the right thing to do, not necessarily because I want to. After we confess forgiveness, God works in our hearts to get around to really meaning it!

 

If I feel any lingering hurt or anger, I need to give it to God. I remind Him I need some help: “God, I’m not doing so well with this, so You’re going to have to do something from here.” And, of course, He does.

 

The servant in Matthew 18:21-35 was forgiven, but then he turned around and wouldn’t forgive. The Bible tells us this unforgiveness tormented him, and that’s how it is with us. When we don’t forgive, the disturbing thoughts are going to be still attached to us and be like arthritis or cancer, that just wants to grow, spread and take over. Doing this one small exercise is the floodgate to awesome freedom as we begin 2018.

 

Charge ahead! Like the Bible says, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Phil 4:13). We are what God says we are and we are not weaklings or doormats. Romans 8:37 tells the truth: “Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.”

 

Love, Carolyn

 

WINGS: Journey /With Jesus: A compilation of short true narratives to entertain, inspire and enhance your spiritual growth. If you haven’t read it yet, check it out. https://www.amazon.com/WINGS-JOURNEY-JESUS-Carolyn-Molica-ebook/dp/B01HLPCQPS/ref=as_sl_pc_as_ss_li_til?tag=jmbcsds-20&linkCode=w00&linkId=17df1629f3a0495e0e4e159e6c208129&creativeASIN=B01HLPCQPS

“TO REMOVE THIS DARK SHADOW”

BRONZINO2

Satan shook his ugly finger at God and perverted the hearts of God’s people. They began to see their creator as severe and unforgiving. They were sure He was constantly watching them, looking to find fault, pass judgment, and delegate harsh punishment. But, as E.G. White puts it, “It was to remove this dark shadow, by revealing to the world the infinite love of God, that Jesus came to live among men.” Jesus said of himself: “He [God] hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised” (Luke 4:18).

 

Love, mercy, and compassion were evidenced in every aspect of Jesus’ life. He took on mankind’s nature that He might reach what every person wants and desires. The poorest and weakest were not afraid to approach Him. Even small children were attracted to him. He didn’t hold back on speaking God’s truth, but He always spoke it in love. Jesus exercised tact, kindness, and thoughtful attention when He interacted with people. He was not afraid to denounce hypocrisy, unbelief, and sin, but tears were in his voice as He uttered His scathing rebukes.

 

Every soul was precious in His eyes. His mission was to bring all men back together with their Creator, to be in His family forever. He saw people as fallen souls whom He came to save.

 

In everyday circumstances, we’re not smart enough to figure out what’s the right thing to do every time. What we think is good, may not be. What we think is bad, may not be. We are only guessing and hoping we’re doing it right.

 

Only God has perfect foresight and hindsight. The bravest thing we can do is abandon our self-constructed ideologies of what it takes to be a good person. Whether we are born-again Christians or not, we need to drop the idea that we alone can devise the standard of what it means to be good. The Lord of Heaven, our Creator, has already given the parameters.

 

We need to jump off the cliff of ME, into the arms of HIM. Knowing what the Bible says, and then having Jesus as our personal Lord, gives us a rock-solid standard, not even as much as for the present, as for eternity.

 

When God got a bad reputation in the Old Testament times, He sent His son Jesus to be a man like us, to relate to us, to understand us, and be among us forever. “Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us” (Matt. 1:23). He is the only Prince of Peace (Is. 9:6), the only Lord of Lords. “These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings” (Rev. 17:14). Jesus is the presence of love and the conduit of all God’s grace.

 

Isaiah 9:6 says: “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder.” That’s the government of your soul! What a relief! Whenever I get stressed about work, I recall that I made Jesus the head of my work. He takes the stress and gives me His peace and quiet, wise instruction. Jesus is pure and genuine.

 

Let Jesus set the rules for our lives from this day forward. It’s more exciting, versatile, loving and forgiving than anything our finite minds can come with.

 

We celebrate the birth of Jesus with the lyrics of this beautiful Christmas hymn written in 1739: Take a minute to read the words. They will bless you.

 

Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the new born King,
peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled!”
Joyful, all ye nations rise,
join the triumph of the skies;
with th’ angelic host proclaim,
“Christ is born in Bethlehem!”
Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the new born King!”

Christ, by highest heaven adored;
Christ, the everlasting Lord;
late in time behold him come,
offspring of a virgin’s womb.
Veiled in flesh the Godhead see;
hail th’ incarnate Deity,
pleased as man with man to dwell,
Jesus, our Emmanuel.
Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the new born King!”

Hail the heaven-born Prince of Peace!
Hail the Sun of Righteousness!
Light and life to all he brings,
risen with healing in his wings.
Mild he lays his glory by,
born that man no more may die,
born to raise the sons of earth,
born to give us second birth.
Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the new born King!”

Come, Desire of nations, come,
fix in us thy humble home;
rise, the woman’s conquering Seed,
bruise in us the serpent’s head.
Adam’s likeness, Lord, efface;
stamp thine image in its place.
Second Adam from above,
Reinstate us in thy love.
Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the new born King!”

Adam’s likeness, Lord, efface,
Stamp Thine image in its place:
Second Adam from above,
Reinstate us in Thy love.
Let us Thee, though lost, regain,
Thee, the Life, the inner man:
O, to all Thyself impart,
Formed in each believing heart.
Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the newborn King!”

 

Love, Carolyn

(Some of the phrases in this article came from a pamphlet I mysteriously received in my mail with quotes from E.G. White. It was addressed to “Resident.”)

 

Painting by Bronzino, Adoration of the Shepherds (1535–1540)

 

GREAT BOOK FOR 2018:   WINGS: JOURNEY WITH JESUS

 

https://www.amazon.com/WINGS-JOURNEY-JESUS-Carolyn-Molica-ebook/dp/B01HLPCQPS/ref=as_sl_pc_as_ss_li_til?tag=jmbcsds-20&linkCode=w00&linkId=d08295a3ec7a27754dcc6e33e188ac05&creativeASIN=B01HLPCQPS

DON’T LET THE THIEF STEAL OUR JESUS

I was robbed last week, so my house is a mess, and I’m borrowing Jane’s computer because mine was destroyed. But not to worry. Everything’s going to be fine. No one can steal my Jesus. Often when difficult things hit us, we want to linger in them, but Jesus is way ahead of us on that. Instead of soothing my broken ego and telling me comforting things, the Lord told me to go and look through some photos of my paintings.

 

His intent was to inspire me, and sure enough, I started smiling and couldn’t stop. I haven’t painted an actual picture in quite a while, plenty of painting at work, but an actual painting on canvas, no. So now I’m excited and determined. When the Lord goes through the trouble to get me to look, He’s not just passing the time. He is showing me something that will delight me and Him too.

 

Psalm 37:4 says: “Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.” Did you know that the Lord knows better than we do, what it is that delights us about Him? For me, I get such a kick out of Him when he catches me off guard and answers a question I have, when I’m not expecting it.

 

And He knows what we desire in our hearts. That’s why God tells us to have courage and keep looking to Him. I get thrilled every time I do a new painting. It’s work, but it’s satisfying work and the Lord knew I needed a push, so I got it.

 

Since He wanted me to look at some old paintings, I thought maybe you’d like to see them too. I hope some make you smile like they did me.

 

I love you and am looking forward to sharing my next painting with you!

 

Merry Christmas to you all.

 

Love, Carolyn

WHAT IS IT ABOUT DEDICATING CHILDREN TO GOD?

JESUS AND CHILDREN

I rented the movie “Wonder Woman” and had to turn it off after the first few minutes of mythology. The premise was that every child is born good. But according to the Bible, that’s just not true. When Jesus was born onto the earth, it was only the second time in history that a baby was born without sin. If even one other child was born without sin, the Bible wouldn’t have said in Luke 2:10-11 “I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to ALL people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.”

 

It’s not a pleasant fact, nor thrilling to know that when you look at that beautiful, precious baby, sin is a very present reality that will manifest in time. Until today, I didn’t realize the bigger significance of a baby dedication. I’ve done a few and they’ve surprised me.

 

In one I did for one of my best friend’s child at age three, God had me write down a prophecy He wanted spoken over the boy. I thought it was odd, until the boy started fussing and when the prophecy began. His parents couldn’t calm him. But I had the prophecy written in front of me and I read it louder and louder over the squealing and squawking. Had I not obeyed the command to write screaming it down, I could have been distracted and halted and God’s words over him might not have been delivered.

 

I used to think, “Why baptize or dedicate a child? They aren’t able to understand.” But now I see that most children are going to be faced with difficult adult choices at a very young age, before they are equipped with the proper godly weapons and tools to deal with those problems.

 

I talked to a woman who told me about an incident that happened to her at age four. Her parents went off to do something and they took her to the babysitter. The babysitter had her boyfriend over and my friend was terrified. At that moment, she perceived that nobody was going to take care of her. She determined at age four, to take charge of her own destiny and fight for her survival. How many of us have a similar story, or know someone who has?

 

Children are faced with situations they don’t have the mental or emotional maturity to handle. If they are taught about Jesus at a young age, they could do better, but without Jesus, it’s like bringing a carpenter’s tools to a painting job.

 

A baby dedication with a God-given prophecy over the child is a form of protection for a child who has no idea of the circumstances he or she will face. In those early childhood incidents, life choices are made that influence similar circumstances as age and experience naturally increase.

 

As churches change, and fewer people go to a physical building for church, let’s not forget about the benefits of some of the old Biblical traditions.

 

Your baby is born with sin in the blood. Protect the little one with a dedication by a trusted spiritual brother or sister. Or do it yourself. Get a book about it, as a guide, not a rule. Then ask the Lord to lead you.

 

You’ll be so surprised and blessed by what the Lord will show you.

 

Jesus loves children. His blessing on them is still an important aspect of Christian family life. Don’t block your children from the touch of Jesus. It would be doing them a great disservice.

 

Mark 10:13-16 is God’s Word on this vital aspect of life:

 

“They brought young children to him [Jesus], that he should touch them; and his disciples rebuked those that brought them.

 

“But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, ‘Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid then not; for of such is the kingdom of God. Verily I say unto you, Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.’

 

“And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them.”

 

It’s never too late. Start now. Even if your children are older and you tell them you want to pray over them because the Bible says to do it, they’ll either think you’re nuts or they’ll be curious and say okay.

 

Jesus was born a perfect child, without sin. We are not. Jesus said let me touch the little ones. Let’s allow Jesus to touch our little ones as well. Dedicate them early; hear the words of prophecy over them and begin early to teach them God’s ways to answer and conquer all life’s difficulties.

 

Love, Carolyn

(painting above is a reproduction painting I did for a church in 2015)

 

My second WINGS book is F R E E     – today and tomorrow. Get your copy or get one for a friend.

 

WINGS: JOURNEY WITH JESUS  

 

https://www.amazon.com/WINGS-JOURNEY-JESUS-Carolyn-Molica-ebook/dp/B01HLPCQPS/ref=as_sl_pc_as_ss_li_til?tag=jmbcsds-20&linkCode=w00&linkId=d08295a3ec7a27754dcc6e33e188ac05&creativeASIN=B01HLPCQPS