Whatever 

WORTHY THOUGHT: Whatever we put into our minds determines what comes out in our words and actions.

We speak God’s word not out of artificial piety to aim to impress others nor do we cater to human respect. We are to speak truth in love that builds bridges not walls.     

We can implant good ideas and settle our differences in todays world if we fix our thoughts on what is true, good and right. 

Think about things that are pure and lovely, and dwell on the fine, good things in others. 

Finally brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable– If there is any moral excellence and if there is any praise– dwell on these things. -Philippians 4:8

~ Angela Lipe-Pattengill 

Cosmetic Christianity 


See, the days of Cosmetic Christianity are over. 

It’s time for us to show people that God has walked us through. 

Let’s stop showing our ‘there’, let’s talk about our ‘here’ where God found us. 

What we need to do is talk about where the blood found us and how the blood walked us from a place of brokenness, from a place of rebellion, into a place of obedience, into a place of worship, into a place of service, into a place of generosity. 

We need to be more like Christ when it comes to ministering to people. 

We need to become relational, relatable, and relevant.

~ Thomas Joel Trevino 

Appearance 

  
Define

Appearance can be defined as an impression given by someone or something, although this may be misleading.

 

Affirm:  

1 Samuel 16:7 “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart.”

Recall:  

Growing up do you remember…

• Getting your church outfit together the day before?

• Going shopping for your Christmas and Easter Outfit?

• Seeing more people at church for Father’s Day and Mother’s Day?

 

I do! The other day I was thinking to myself. There was a time in which I was told that you have to give the Lord your best. While the ideology behind this seemed normal- I believe there is another view point. So I started my research on appearance and the church.  

 

Appearance is an impression that can be misleading. I realized that so many of us are going to church portraying our best, some of us feel that we can’t go because we feel that our sins are keeping us from the closeness of GOD, and honestly many of us who are Christians project an attitude that seems like GOD’s best. 

 

Church for some of us has become a routine fashion show. At a fashion show, you have people coordinating the event (the church administration), the fashion models embracing the stage (our speakers), and the event attendees (the congregation).    

 

We are focused on how we look on our shoes, our suit, our hair style, the size of our bible, etc. Sometimes we only want to be part of the show. You guys, church is not a fashion event. GOD wants all of you, even when the show doesn’t look its best, even when you don’t feel your best; he wants a relationship with you year-round.  

 

So often we are WORRIED about our looks, our past and the WOUNDS of others that we lose sight of our WORSHIP. If we take our WOUNDs to GOD and WORSHIP him for WHOSE we are- our WORRY about unnecessary things will soon fade away. 

 

GOD looks at your heart and not the outside. I encourage you to ask GOD to reveal the matters of your heart, ask him about how you appear to him, and ask him how to be more Christ-like. Be ready for his answer and be prepared to make those adjustments. Today is your day to see yourself and others how GOD sees you.  

 

Exercise:

Dear God,

Thank you so much for seeing my heart. I want an intimate relationship with you and I want to project a Christ like attitude for others. Help me to display my best for you.

 

Commit to the change- I DARE You. 

                    ~ Lereca Monik 

 

#lerecamonik #restoredministries #itstimeforachange #anewyou #mydearestsister #Idareyou #LiveRestored 

Thirst 

  

Define

Thirst can be defined as a feeling of needing or wanting to drink something or a strong desire for something. 

 

The urban dictionary defines thirst as a form of lust of or want from members of the opposite sex. 

 

Affirm:  

John 4: 14 “but whomever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

 

Recall:  

I lay here in my bed speechless, in tears, confused, amazed, in awe, thankful, and full of the spirit.  

 

Let me take you back a few weeks ago. A few weeks ago, I was at a restaurant with a few girlfriends. I watched a group of men basically sit at their tables with this look of wanting to bite various women as they walked through the door. These men seemed at the time is–what I would call hungry. I was uncomfortable by the way they looked at other women and most importantly by the way they looked at me. These guys were in my words doing way too much. One of my girlfriends said “those guys are thirsty and the thirst is real!”    

 

That phrase never left my mind and I began searching for areas in the bible that spoke on thirst. We know how GOD delivers, he is always on time. God led me to the story of the woman at the well. I don’t think I was ready for what I was going to experience.

 

Reading the story, I learned that the woman at the well was faced with the following issues in her life: low self-esteem, hopelessness, morale, and feeling ostracized. This woman let others treat her cheaply, and as a result she treated herself very cheaply. I have been the woman at the well and I am sure many of you have too.  

 

You see, people do not grow up wanting to be treated cheaply…little girls do not aspire to be career prostitutes and little boys do not aspire to become abusers; but unfortunately children who are abused in any form, tend to abuse themselves and others. Our human nature forces us to make desperate choices in the wake of abuse and oppression. This is why we are experiencing this thirst epidemic. Men and woman have an excessive thirst to replace what was taken from them or not given to them as children…love and attention.   

 

What do you thirst for? Have you been treating yourself cheaply? Do you find yourself in abusive relationships? Are you thirsting over the opposite sex? Do you find yourself posting images on social media that seek the wrong type of attention? Are you sulking in feelings of guilt, shame, and fear- because of a past situation? What are you lusting over? 

 

Are you finding relief in the things you thirst for?   

 

Please don’t remain hostage by your past or what appears to be a social or cultural norm. Just like the woman at the well, we are dealing with issues and as a result this excessive thirst is exhausting and gives us a blurred vision.   

 

 

For years I carried the burden of molestation—I was treated cheaply by men as a child and in turn I continued to allow men to treat me cheaply (with little respect). That’s why I lay here in tears, I see so many hurting people, who like me suffered as a child. I am so thankful that we don’t have to be in bondage by what happened in our past. If we truly thirst for more, just like the woman at the well, GOD is ready to give you a drink of the living water. Go take a drink and thirst no more!

 

Commit to the change…I Dare you!

 

 

Exercise:

Dear God,

 

I want to drink from your well. Thank you for giving me an excessive thirst for you. Thank you for giving me the grace that I need to be free from past bondage. I love you. 

~Lereca Monik  

 

#lerecamonik #restoredministries #itstimeforachange #anewyou #mydearestsister #Idareyou #LiveRestored #MindBodySoul 

Joy & Happiness 

  

I’ve often been told by visiting my friends or family members that I always look happy. They have known and seen my painful struggle with hardships in finances, divorce, betrayal and loss but still I always appear cheerfully encouraged. 
I tell them I found joy in my heart. That’s the part they don’t understand most. How do you get joy in your heart when you go through hard times? 
I thought that is very a good question. 
Is there a difference between Joy and Happiness?
 As I prayed to Holy Spirit to orchestrate my thoughts, I was led to:
 “Joy of the Lord is your strength” 
        -Nehemiah 12:42-43.
This means God strengthens us spiritually in the midst of suffering with the joy given only by the Holy Spirit.  
In my opinion Happiness is a decision or a perspective. It is unrelated to my circumstances. Happiness, like most things, is dependent on our relationship with God who is unwavering and eternal. We don’t base our life on circumstances, but on God. 
My example was my mission trip. In Guatemala, I visited children who have very little or nothing yet were happy.  Food, shelter and safety is all they needed. 
Happiness is unrelated to stuff. 
True joy however is far deeper than happiness. We can feel the joy in spite of our deepest troubles. Happiness is temporary because it is based on external circumstance, but joy is lasting because it is based on God’s presence. 
Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.” Psalms 30:5
And my soul shall be joyful in the Lord; it shall rejoice in His Salvation.” Psalm 35:9
I read a devotional article “Choose Joy: Because happiness is not Enough”,  by Karen Warren co-founder of SaddleBack Church with her husband Rick Warren in Lake Forest, California. 
She wrote; “the meaning of Joy is the settled assurance that God is in control of all the details of your life. the quiet confidence that ultimately everything is going to be alright, and the determined choice to praise God in every situation.” 
My conclusion to the question on Joy and Happiness is, yes; I’m happy because I choose to be happy, knowing God is with me every step of the way.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart lean not on your own understanding in all your ways acknowledge him and he will set your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-7
This is where I find my joy; Knowing a deeper truth that He is in control no matter what my circumstances are and I trust hope and love deeply in Him. ~ Angela Lipe-Pattengill 

No Darkness

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And this is the message [the message of promise] which we have heard from Him and now are reporting to you: God is Light, and there is no darkness in Him at all [no, not in any way]. ~ 1 John 1:5 AMP

“A message from the Lord Jesus, the Word of life, the eternal Word, we should all gladly receive. The great God should be represented to this dark world, as pure and perfect light. As this is the nature of God, his doctrines and precepts must be such. And as his perfect happiness cannot be separated from his perfect holiness, so our happiness will be in proportion to our being made holy. To walk in darkness, is to live and act against religion. God holds no heavenly fellowship or intercourse with unholy souls. -Matthew Henry Concise Commentary

I love this verse and commentary! I gladly receive that -No -Not in Any way is there any Darkness in Him. Hallelujah! He is pure and perfect Light!

Lord, remove all darkness from me. Cleanse my unholy soul of anything that is not pure or perfect and that does not bring glory to You or Light to others. In Jesus Name, Amen.

How can you share the Pure and Perfect Light of Christ with this dark world? ~XXOO Michelle Bollom
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