Monday, April 30

Manna Monday- Does Your Face Reflect the Joy of Jesus?

There is nothing more discouraging to me as a believer than to witness other believers look like Eeyore all the time. Who wants to know what kind of joy you have been given in Christ when you look like this all the time? Jesus came to give us His Joy, a joy the world DOES NOT know and this is how we look? We have discredited the ministry of Christ when we live our lives by our feelings. And our feelings are reflected in our facial expressions.

I am happy person. I smile a lot. I always have. I laugh a lot. I like to joke around. I love to be silly. I feel happy when things go my way and sad when they don't. But that's not joy. That's happiness. And happiness is fleeting. It changes like the wind because happiness hangs it's hopes on circumstances. And circumstances change.

As I have grown older in my faith with the LORD, the reason why I smile a lot is because I love Jesus. He has given me HIS Joy in my heart. The more time I spend with Him, the more I smile because I understand what I have been given through Him. I want others to know. To be encouraged. I think of my face like a mini mission tool to share the love of Christ through a smile. When I smile, it is because God has saved me, given  me a  new name through the blood of Jesus Christ, and I have a new home- heaven one day will be my reality. I smile because I understand that no matter what I may be going through, I have Jesus with me through every trial, every circumstance, every joy and every disappointment. I smile because I want to encourage others. God has given me an opportunity to smile to a LOST, DYING, HOPELESS world. And most non-believers don't smile. But they love to receive a smile.

A True JOY Story
Recently, as I was checking out at my local pharmacy counter, the pharmacy tech blurted out, "Why do you smile all the time?" Quickly, I said, "It's Jesus. I smile because I know and love Jesus." I came to understand that whether or not I think about it, people make judgements based on the countenance of my face.WOW! They really do!!!! But you may say, "Ashley, that is not my personality." It doesn't matter if you are outgoing or not, a smile is one way you can bless others you come in contact with. Over time, they notice the consistency of your mood. They notice that something is different...... because most people DON'T smile.

Read the following description about the face according to "The Dictionary of Bible Themes"
The main visual characteristic of a person. Facial features are recognisable as uniquely those of a particular person. The face also indicates mood and attitude. The showing or directing of the face towards someone or something may indicate regard, approval or determination, while hiding or turning away of the face indicates the opposite. 
When we don't smile, when we turn our face away quickly from others, we indicate that we don't like someone, we are avoiding them, or we don't value them. This is not what many believers want to portray, but it's what they portray to others when they turn their face away from others. You discredit your ministry quickly.

Notice the way the Bible describe the face of Moses (Exodus 34:29).
Moses' face looked radiant because he had talked with the LORD. He had seen the LORD.
Theologian Matthew Henry said this about the face of Moses in Exodus 34:29:
"It was the effect of his sight of God. Communion with God, First, Makes the face to shine in true honour. Serious godliness puts a lustre upon a man’s countenance, such as commands esteem and affection. Secondly, It should make the face to shine in universal holiness. When we have been in the mount with God, we should let our light shine before men, in humility, meekness, and all the instances of a heavenly conversation; thus must the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us, even the beauty of holiness, that all we converse with may take knowledge of us that we have been with Jesus, Acts 4:13." (Source:
Dear sister, does it look like you have been with Jesus? Does your face reflect the time spent with Jesus?

 I like what Pastor John MacArthur has to say about Joy:
" is a confidence built on relationship. Now that test can never be objective for a Spirit-filled Christian because a Spirit-filled Christian possesses joy. And do you remember what I told you joy was? Joy is a gift from God to those who believe the gospel of Christ being produced in them by the Holy Spirit because they receive and obey the Word of God while experiencing trials and keeping their hope fixed on the glory which is to come." (Source:
As I have grown older and grown in my Christian faith, it has become clear to me that there is one thing that Christians have that believers don't-the Joy of Jesus.

Consider the following verses,
Sharing the Joy of Jesus is being focused on sharing Jesus with others!!!!
Romans 12:13
Hebrews 13:16
Final Thoughts on Joy
What does your countenance look like on a daily basis? Do you look people in the eye and smile and say "hello" and "thank you?" Or do you look like Eeyore, look like something is always wrong? Whether we like it or not, we have a ministry with our face. And if we want our faces to change, we have to spend time with the LORD in a daily quiet time. Seeking Him changes everything. The only thing that kills our joy is our unconfessed sin. If your attitude is always focused on what is wrong with everyone else, on how rude the world is or your boss or co-workers are, if you are focused on others ungratefulness, or what others have done to you, you are not yielding to the Spirit's control in your life. Sin is blocking your way and keeping you from being able to experience the joy of Jesus in your life because you are focused on everything else but Jesus.

How can you begin to reflect the Joy of Jesus? It's simple.
By spending time with Him.

I am praying for you dear sisters today and pray this message will be encouraging to your hearts this Monday morning.

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Thursday, April 26

Good Morning God!!!! A Morning Prayer to God

Good Morning God!
I praise You for this day. You made it! You are creator God!!
Thank you for being my rock, my fortress, my deliverer, my shield, the horn of my salvation, my stronghold (Psalm 18:1-3)
Forgive me for being busy. Distracted. Consumed by a schedule. Rebellious at times. Consumed by what I want instead of what YOU want for me. Focused on the world at times instead of YOUR WORD.
I come to you this day. On my knees.
I come bringing You my heart. Search it and know it.
I come bringing You my thoughts. May my thoughts be focused on Your truth instead of my feelings.
I come bringing You my mind. Renew it as I read Your Word this morning.
I come bringing You my hands. May they serve You and reach out to others and share Your love.
I come bringing You my feet. May they be swift to do good and flee evil.
I come bringing You my eyes. Give me eyes to see what YOU want me to see in this day. Help me turn my eyes away from worthless things.
I come bringing you my ears. Help me listen for You. I long to hear Your voice as I read Your Word.
No matter what may come my way this day, help me to remember You are in control and are with me (Deuteronomy 31:8)
Thank You for your unfailing love for me. Your measureless love! (Ephesians 3:17-19)
Thank You that I get to come before Your throne at any time of the day.
Thank You that You hear me (Psalm 5:3).
Thank You that You see me (Psalm 139:3).
Thank You for Jesus!!!!

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Monday, April 2

Manna Monday- Pouting...a Praise Killer!

What you focus on in your day determines how you will live. Pouting, even silently pouting to yourself, will inevitably come out in your words, actions and attitude towards others.Don't kid yourself. It's a dangerous thing. Why? Because at the core of pouting is selfishness. It's a heart that says, "I want my way and I am mad because something hasn't turned out the way I wanted it to turn out.I have a right to have my way."

Pouting is a praise killer and it's reflective of a heart that is desperately in need of revival.

Listen to Psalm 145:2
"Every day I will bless You. And I will praise Your name forever and ever."
Does this Psalm say, "pout...don't praise God today because you deserve your way? You have the right to pout!!!!!"

NO! NO! NO!!!!!

The Psalmist's focus in Psalm 145 is entirely on the LORD and how good He is. Daily, the Psalmist commits to praising God and blessing the name of the LORD in each day. That's how we can stop pouting. By turning our focus and committing ourselves back to God to bless and praise Him in each day.

Further down into Psalm 145 the Psalmist declares the nearness of God when we call on Him in truth (Psalm 145:18). That's how you get out of the pout pit!!!! The pout cycle can be demolished by praising God! It can be crushed by the power of reading God's Word. Pouting turns away from God and His word. Pouting makes you feel lonely because it is a lie. It's not focused on the truth of God. It's focused on a situation instead of bringing God the situation. It makes you feel like God is far away. But He is not far away. He is present with you ALL the time. The way we become closer to feeling His presence is by coming near to Him in truth.

Pouting can be dangerous because it is easy to do. It's what we want to do! It's in our sin nature. That's why reading God's Word, especially the Psalms can refresh your heart and give a new focus for your day. Pouting can become a downward spiral that affects your family, your co-workers, your life. It can destroy everything around you. That's why it's dangerous.

Listen to the Psalmist praise God in Psalm 145:

Psalm 145:3
Psalm 145:5
Psalm 145:8
Psalm 145:9
Psalm 145:13
Psalm 145:14
Psalm 145:15
Psalm 145:16
Psalm 145:17
Psalm 145: 19
Psalm 145:20

If this doesn't get you to praising God, I don't know what will!
Focus on a few verses from Psalm 145 this week. Say them out loud each day.
Soon, you will become sick to your stomach if you even think about pouting.
Turn your eyes to God! Give Him your reasons for pouting. Pour out your heart before King Jesus. Let Him take care of all the details. And Praise Him dear sister! Praise Him each day!!!!!

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