Desperate Times Do Not Call for Desperate Measures.” By: Melodie Rose Jordan. 

I have a question to ask you friends: what do you do in desperate situations. You know the situations that keep you up late at night because your mind will refuse to stop running. The situations where you try to make up plan after plan only watch each one of them fail. I have often times in my own life just choose to run away from my adversities, and I have ended up in the hands of the enemy. Can you relate? 

Tonight I want us to read in 1 Samuel 27, where David is caught in the midst of his own desperate time. He has been on the run from Saul, the envious king. David hasn’t been relying on God or even speaking of him. David has began to rely on himself, which is the beginning on the road to destruction: “But David kept thinking to himself, “Someday Saul is going to get me. The best thing I can do is escape to the Philistines. Then Saul will stop hunting for me in Israelite territory, and I will finally be safe.” ‭1 Samuel‬ ‭27:1‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I have mentioned before that I was neck deep into pornography. At the time, I thought that was the only oulet open to me The evil desires it caused made me forget this reality and I entered a new one. A one where I felt safe and pleasures. Exactly what David felt when he made his home in Gath; the home of Goliath. How could David possibly think this was a good plan?! Here are six points to keep in mind about David’s close minded choices and what choices God wants us to make: 

1) we will have a season of drought, but we should not remain there. Trust that God will send the rain.
2) depend on God to get us through our adversities 

3) in some situations, we think it’s best to run (our own perspective) instead of remaining still (god’s perspective). 

4) our disobedience can end with on a price on our own life and our generations to come.

5) we can find comfort in earthly pleasure and the “easy road instead of trusting God in the narrow road

6) we can often take safety with the enemy because it’s often more “convenient”

One statement to keep in mind: “Desperate times do not call for desperate measures. They call for prayerful measures.” You and I are going to go through drought seasons. Seasons that will challenge our faith, our minds, and our bodies. But are we going to find life again through Christ, or are we going to continue plotting our own deaths? Our choices always come with consequences, but God is still there in the midst of it all. He still wants to provide us His strength and for us to find him again in our darkest hour. 

“David was now in great danger because all his men were very bitter about losing their sons and daughters, and they began to talk of stoning him. But David found strength in the Lord his God.” ‭‭1 Samuel‬ ‭30:6‬ ‭NLT‬‬

“Joy in Suffering.” By: Melodie Rose Jordan. 

There’s that word I’m using again: suffering. I know I am probably making someone’s face cringe and heart rate quicken, but it’s so important in living for Christ is we’re called to suffer for Him as well. Jesus willingly took our painful ransom so we all could have unity with Heaven once again. But, why should we suffer if Jesus already has? Today, we will be studying Philippians Chapter One. Paul wrote this letter while in chains in Philippi, as a warm and loving thank you to those who are spreading the gospel of Jesus (now linking back to us). 

Paul’s purpose in writing this letter was to show the Philippians that even though he was imprisoned for sharing about Jesus, he still chose to seek the joy in it. Paul also counseled about those who are speaking about Jesus through rivalry and self righteousness, instead of humility and unity. Here are three key points to take from this chapter. 

We are in community, not incongruity: “I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding.” ‭‭Philippians‬ ‭1:9‬ ‭NLT

This verse is so important because Paul is stating one main factor of believing in Jesus: constantly in communion with others, not isolation. We attend church to praise, give, and pray for each other. We invite our girls over to have some Jesus filling memories and to grow with one another. We seek out spiritual counsel when we are at the short end of our faith. If we only confide with God in our quiet time, and then go out into the world with a blank expression, how are people supposed to know that the powerful God is living inside our very hearts?! 

Living a bold life, not an ashamed life for Christ: “And because of my imprisonment, most of the believers here have gained confidence and boldly speak God’s message without fear.” ‭‭Philippians‬ ‭1:14‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Paul is literally in chains at this moment, expressing his joy for his slavement for Christ. What a bold statement! I want that so badly! Paul is encouraging us here that if he can fid faith, joy, and contement in Christ, even though he knows he is going to be imprisoned and eventually killed for the cause of Christ, we should feel encouraged to the same! This life is temporary! No relationship, no occupation, not one thing will satisfy our hearts the way God can. He has promised us eternal life through Jesus Christ. That makes me want to venture out into the streets and proclaiming His love to every being I pass by! It is something I never want to live without! 

Our suffering is His glory: “We are in this struggle together. You have seen my struggle in the past, and you know that I am still in the midst of it.” Philippians‬ ‭1:30‬ ‭NLT‬‬

My beautiful friends, we are suffering together. We are slaves of righteousness together. We are all bound in God’s forgiveness together. We no longer need to fear the feelings of loneliness or rejection. We are all apart of the body of Christ. When one falls, we all help pick them back up. When one is weak, we all pray that God will strengthen them again. I hope this has encouraged you today! God bless! ❤🌈

“Praying God Centered Prayers”. By: Melodie Rose Jordan.  

I know we all have things we want. A decent job, a beautiful house, a relationship. You get the gist. I know I spend countless nights on my knees just yapping away to God what seems to be endless list of “prayers” or should I say, “needs” I need him to fulfill. Today I was doing some bible time and 1 Samuel came across my path today. What is important about this story is the woman it’s based on. This woman, Hannah, was special because her prayers were God centered. She cried out to God for what she wanted that would glorify Him in the end run. Am I churning some hearts yet? Let’s jump right into this. 

Hannah was married to a man named Elkanah, who was also married to another woman named Peninnah. (Polygamy became popular around this time, which was apart from God’s will for marriage; Genesis 2:24). They resided in Ramah, the first important landmark in the timeline leading to the coming of Jesus. Elkanah, Hannah, Peninnah, and her two sons traveled every year to pray and give sacrifices to the Tabernacle. Elkanah would portion his two Peninnah and her two sons, but gave a special portion to Hannah because he loved her so much. Here are three things to keep in mind about Hannah’s trials and how we can develop our character ourselves. 

Overcome mockery: “But Peninnah made fun of Hannah because the Lord had closed her womb. Year after year it was the same-Peninnah would taunt Hannah as they went to the Tabernacle. Hannah would finally be reduced to tears and would not even eat.” 1 Samuel 1:6-7 

I am sure, my beautiful friends, we all face disapproval throughout our daily lives. When you go to work and you do your very best, but yet there is that one person who always tries to make sure they feel better than you. Or you give your heart out to someone with endless love and kindness, yet they keep giving what you want to someone else instead, leaving you with that half empty feeling. What’s important to note here is that God already sees our potential. We don’t need to strive to be better with our spiritual talents. God does not want us clashing against each other, we should be linking ourselves together, since we are the body of Christ. This isn’t a race on who is better, this is a race to One who makes us better. 

Pray for God, not to God: “Hannah was in deep anguish, crying bitterly as she prayed to the Lord. And she made this vow: “O Lord Almighty, if you will look down upon my sorrow and answer my prayer and give me a son, then I will give him back to you. He will be yours for his entire lifetime, and as a sign that he has been dedicated to the Lord, His hair will never be cut.” 1 Samuel 1:10-11. 

What a prayer, right?! So selfless. I am so guilty of saying self centered prayers, and I actually demand God to always give me what I want! What kind of a relationship is that? Of course you want your kids to come to you when they need something, but if they only came you with their needs instead of actually spending quality time with you, where would that lead to? A dead end! Our prayers to God work the same way. We cannot just only to talk to God, we need to listen to Him. Ask him if what you’re praying will benefit Him not you. This flesh is ours to live in, but it is God’s to pursue in. Hannah has given all of her to God in that prayer and after being witnessed by the priest Eli, she longer clenched her pity. She rejoiced because of her faith in God. 

Honor God in worship: “The entire family got up early the next morning and went to worship the Lord once more. Then they returned home to Ramah. When Elkanah slept with Hannah, the Lord remembered her request. And in due time she gave birth to a son. She named him Samuel (Hebrew term relation to “asked of God). And after Hannah has weaned her child, she took him to the Tabernacle of Shiloh. Hannah approached Eli and said, “Do you remember me? I am the woman who stood here several years ago praying to the Lord. I asked the Lord to give birth to this child and he has given me my request.” And they worshiped the Lord there. 1 Samuel 1:21-27

Hannah was obedient. She did have to wait for her son, but I can imagine she had to evaluate her heart and faith in God multiple times through the process. But, in due time God answered her, and she gave back to him. That is so important, friend! Our prayers our to honor God and his kingdom! Not ourselves! And after he answers us, we need to worship Him! And if you get another door in the face, still worship and have faith! There is another door! God promises that! Tonight if you feel like nothing is going right, the same request on your heart is just going numb, take time to cry. Take time to pray. Take time to worship. God hears you, friend. You are not alone! Have a faith that fights! 

Living in Faith: The Book of Habakkuk Chapter Three”. By: Melodie Rose Jordan. 

What an amazing book this was!! Wow, so much power and lessons we all can take from it! Habakkuk symbolizes the importance of living in faith of God, not man. To recap, chapter one starts out showing Habakkuk in great despair and confusion as to why God allowed evilness to continue in the world. He even began to doubt and question the creation of God, almost as if God were evil Himself. How would you react to that? Anger, sadness, vengeful? But God, God is so much higher than our minds can process. He took Habbakuk’s pain and questioning, and used it for good. Instead of turning His back on Habakkuk, God granted him His powers so that He could act out the wonders of His love. To show the Babylonians their sin shall conquer no more. 

Chapter three ends with Habakkuk’s prayer. I just read these words and I feel God’s presence heavily in this moment. The way He describes God is overwhelming. Let’s look at the first few verses just so you can have a visual image of our great Lord: “A prayer of Habakkuk the prophet, according to Shigionoth. O Lord, I have heard the report of you, and your work, O Lord, do I fear. In the midst of the years revive it; in the midst of the years make it known; in wrath remember mercy. God came from Teman, and the Holy One from Mount Paran. Selah His splendor covered the heavens, and the earth was full of his praise.” ‭‭Habakkuk‬ ‭3:1-3‬ ‭ESV‬‬

I love this prayer. It shows the wisdom behind Habakkuk. After question God and being restored His faith, Habakkuk developed a fear for God. Not the typical fear we know of, but a maturing fear that grew Habakkuk closer to God. (“Who are those who fear the Lord? He will show them the path they should choose.” ‭‭Psalms‬ ‭25:12‬ ‭NLT‬‬) 

Continuing, Habakkuk 3:8-15 reads: “Was it in anger, Lord, that you struck the rivers and parted the sea? Were you displeased with them? No, you were sending your chariots of salvation! You brandished your bow and your quiver of arrows. You split open the earth with flowing rivers. The mountains watched and trembled. Onward swept the raging waters. The mighty deep cried out, lifting its hands in submission. The sun and moon stood still in the sky as your brilliant arrows flew and your glittering spear flashed. You marched across the land in anger and trampled the nations in your fury. You went out to rescue your chosen people, to save your anointed ones. You crushed the heads of the wicked and stripped their bones from head to toe. With his own weapons, you destroyed the chief of those who rushed out like a whirlwind, thinking Israel would be easy prey. You trampled the sea with your horses, and the mighty waters piled high.” ‭Habakkuk‬ ‭3:8-15‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I like this imagery Habakkuk uses for God’s power. He uses this to point out that God didn’t use His works for evil, rather for salvation. God is more than anything in this world. He is something to be feared, to worship, and to follow. Sometimes we become arrogant and think we are higher and we know all, but then God uses His power to break us, in order to change our vision and to protect us from separating our hearts from Him. 

Lastly, Habakkuk 3:17-19 reads:  “Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines; even though the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren; even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty, yet I will rejoice in the Lord! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation! The Sovereign Lord is my strength! He makes me as surefooted as a deer, able to tread upon the heights. (For the choir director: This prayer is to be accompanied by stringed instruments.) Habakkuk‬ ‭3:17-19‬ ‭NLT‬‬

The imagery used here is to example the loss we all will constantly endure. But Habakkuk affirmed that even though His heart will grieve and the pain will always be, He will always trust and worship God. He was not controlled by his feelings from the world, but by His faith in God. When nothing makes sense, don’t conform to the negative feelings your circumstances create, rather remember that God supplies us everything we need (“Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.” Philippians‬ ‭4:9‬ ‭NLT‬‬) God will grant us confidence through every trial we will face. “They will run surefooted as a deer across a dangerous terrain.” God, at His proper time, will grant us justice and rid evil caused in our lives. In the meantime, we need to live by the strength of His Spirit! We will be prospered, my dear friends! God is always with us and we will not be buried by evil! Let us be lights to a dark, ridden world!! ❤

“Living in Faith: The Book of Habakkuk Chapter Two”. By: Melodie Rose Jordan. 

“And the Lord answered me: “Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it. For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end—it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay. “Behold, his soul is puffed up; it is not upright within him, but the righteous shall live by his faith.” ‭‭Habakkuk‬ ‭2:2-4‬ ‭ESV‬‬In the last chapter we were introduced to the prophet, Habakkuk, and his great deal of trouble with the evilness caused by sin. He was deeply saddened not only for the lost souls, but for God being distant and not doing anything about it. The Lord spoke to Habakkuk and prompted Him to show the acts of God that would help stop the Babylonians in their dead tracks. Sounds great, right? Here’s the catch though. God put Habakkuk through another faith test: waiting patiently. 

I don’t know about you, but there are times where I just want things right now at the very second I want it! There are some prayers that God answers immediately, but once we grow in our faith, the prayers begin to slow down some. Can you relate? It is difficult to wait for our requests to be answered by God in desperate circumstances. But, the more we worry and rush the process, we miss out on maturing our faith. What lesson would we learn if God granted our requests the exact time we ask and exactly how we want Him to? I am sure we all prayed selfish prayers for our own benefit, but when do we actually stop to listen to God telling us what His best intentions are for us. 

Chapter Two is this concept: evil doers seek selfish pleasures and create deception. The righteous live by their faith and trust in God. We must teach ourselves to trust God is directing us for His purposes, which are always good. When we seek His face and yearn to be like Him, he leads us to a path of peace and contentment. We must be carful not to fall into the pleasures of the world. Habakkuk writes about how the Babylonians create their own idols, getting drunk day and night, sexual immorality. These things may seem fun, but how little temptation can cause massive destruction! We are called to be in the ways of God. To love accordin to His ways, not ours!! His plan is far greater, successful, and leads to eternal life! “But the Lord is in His holy temple. Let all the Earth be silent before Him.” Habakkuk 2:20 NLT 

Your may feel that prayer you have prayed 1,000 times is just floating around, lost and confused as your spirit may be. Don’t give up, beautiful friend! God works best in those who wait for Him! Trust and seek Him! Learn His word, worship His name, pray as many times! God will be there for you and WILL NOT DELAY! 

“For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.” ‭Romans‬ ‭1:17‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“Now it is evident that no one is justified before God by the law, for “The righteous shall live by faith.” Galatians‬ ‭3:11‬ ‭ESV‬‬

“Living in Faith: The Book of Habakkuk Chapter One.” By: Melodie Rose Jordan. 

“O Lord, how long shall I cry for help, and you will not hear? Or cry to you “Violence!” and you will not save?” ‭‭Habakkuk‬ ‭1:2‬ ‭ESV‬‬
I feel God has led me into a different wilderness lately. I know He is with me, but yet He isn’t. Confusing? Basically, I am feeling conflicted. He has been answering my prayers for over the past year tremendously, but lately I’ve been dealing with silence. And Melodie hates silence. Have you been there, friend? Through this time of silence, it’s really important that we stay plugged into God’s word. I have chosen to study with you the book of Habakkuk, because this man is one great example of living by faith, not sight. 

Habakkuk was a man who lived in a Judah, a place ridden with evilness and sin. He became a prophet in 612 B.C, where God led Him to minister to the Babylonians, the ones drowned in there own sinful pleasures. Habakkuk was deeply saddened by what he saw. Chapter One shows how he often question God with great anguish. How could a loving God let evilness that Habakkuk saw keep happening? Didn’t he care? Wasn’t Habakkuk’s prayers being answered? Even though he doubted God and was greatly troubled by his pain, He still approached God only about his sorry.   That is so important, friend. It is so easy now a days to post a sappy status or send rant texts to our friends. But, to approach God and profess bodly about your requests? That is faith right there. 

By Habakkuk approaching God and believing in His works, God responded to him by rewarding him with acts that will help the sinful circumstances he had to face in Judah: “Look among the nations, and see; wonder and be astounded. For I am doing a work in your days that you would not believe if told.” ‭‭Habakkuk‬ ‭1:5‬ ‭ESV‬‬ The three “acts” that Habakkuk was granted from God to show the people of Judah were their own independent and prosperous kingdom would become a vassal nation, Egypt’s evil power would be crushed overnight, and the Babylonians would rise to power. 

Imagine if God were to answer your deepest prayer right now. Imagine your pain and problems completely vanishing. That would be great, right? Sometimes God speeds right along in our requests, other times it’s a much slower process. I believe God does that so we can always put our trust in Him. When we are faced with trials, it is easy to feel God has abandon us. That’s a messy trap to fall into. If we believe that lie, we can create a void between us and God. We need to trust that God has a plan for us all, including evildoers. The key fact here is to remain humble before God, and we will see His plan through. 

“It is Time to Rest.” By: Melodie Rose Jordan. 

“Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.” ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭11:28‬ ‭NLT‬‬
Can I ask one simple question: are you tired? I am sure tiredness is most common with anyone who is up at early hours with a new born whaling in the next room or pouring your third cup of coffee while trying to get your pitch ready for your new boss. But today I want to ask if you’re soul is tired? From day to day tasks, it’s so easy for all of us to get caught up in our own emotions and to set our eyes off of Jesus. We can wrap our minds completely around what deadlines to get done, and that makes focus on only ourselves, which is a dangerous trap. Today I will break down three things that may be making us weary today. 
The Burden of Sin: The biggest thing of course that causes weariness is sin. Sin itself is luring and addictive. It starts of easy. You get caught up in infatuation, and your heart is linked. You start to see the damaging it’s slowly causing and you’re looking with one eye at the door, and the other on whatever sin is consuming. Your heart starts to ache, and you slowly start to fall into a pit of despair. You do not need to let sin control you forever! Lay your body at Jesus’s feet, and lay out every bit of whatever sin is eating at your soul. 

The Burden of Opression and Persecution: As believers in Christ, our job is to follow the Great Commisson. Which is to go out and make disciples. Though it is so thrilling and wonderful to talk to people about Christ, it’s also challenging. We all will face persecution and rejection from those who don’t know Christ. There will be those who will ridicule and mock us for what we stand for, but Jesus said Himself to take joy in that: “God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers.” ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭5:11‬ ‭NLT Whenever you feel weary in battling the enemy, Jesus is right there with you, providing His strength and wisdom to speak the right words and how to react lovingly to those who hurt us.

The Burden of Searching for God: Now, reading that may have put a puzzled look on your face. I am not implying at all that seeking God is a burden. But we have have that one point in our walk that feels like we’re wondering in the desert. Where we are thirsting after the answers we need just to get through to the next day. It’s in those moments of fighting and being frantic, God wants us to be still. God works the best when we simply stay put and trust in Him. When we fight for peace, we cause a war within our hearts. When we are quiet for peace, we find reassurance in our hearts. “Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak tenderly to her.” ‭Hosea‬ ‭2:14‬ ‭ESV‬‬

If you feel a tug in your chest, maybe God is calling you to rest. It’s okay to lay your head on His lap and just relax in His presence. It’s okay if everything around is not coming together all the way yet. God has a place for all of us in His kingdom, He will lead you to the next place to work, but right now it’s time to rejuvenate and replenish your soul in Him. It is time to rest. ❤