Sunday, January 22, 2012

"How to Spend Time With God"

"Whenever I get lonely, I know that it's God calling me back to fellowship with Him. So take that lonely feeling & give it to God. Pour out."


So, I've gotten this question a ton! So many people want to know how to have quiet time with God. I totally understand. When I first gave my life to Christ in 2003--I heard from my best friends sister that I was supposed to spend time with God daily. So I got a journal, some gospel music, a bible I could understand & I found a local church that taught the word correctly.

Before we get started into the basics..We must put our relationship with God in perspective. It's a marriage. WE are His church and Jesus is the Christ. The body of believers that make up the Church are collectively called bride of Christ. As Bridegroom, Jesus gave His life for His bride, “to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word” (Ephesians 5:25-26), with it, the eternal union of Christ and His bride will be actualized (Revelation 19:7-9; 21:1-2). (this is Jesus dying for our sins & making us whole. Allah, Buddha, Mary or any other religion didn't save us or die for us. Christ did. Thus, CHRIST is the door--so through CHRIST are your sins forgiven, not anyone or anything else.)
I then read in Isaiah 54:5 that said "The Maker is my Husband" and Jeremiah 3:14: “Turn, O backsliding children, says the LORD; for I am married unto you." I went throughout the scripture because I wanted to understand the relationship between GOD & us through Jesus. I looked up a ton of scriptures on God's love for me and it helped me to understand God's personality & how I can have a relationship with God the Holy Spirit through Jesus Christ. I loved those two above scriptures because it made me realize HOW close I should be to Christ. If He's my husband I need to REALLY act like I'm married to Him & not CHEAT on Him with this world.

Whenever I slip on spending time with God I tend to be more touchy, more "emotional" and people tend to get on my nerves. lol Why? Because I'm empty. HE fulfills me, not working a million hours at work, a man, a job, a marriage, kids or anything else. I can then sense God pulling on my heart.. telling me that HE misses me. Does God miss you? Do you acknowledge Him? Start today.
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How To Spend Time With God



1. SET a time & stick with it. Statistics show that if you do something for 21 days it will become a habit. I like to spend time with God FIRST thing in the morning. It sets the tone for the day & it puts life in perspective. When you first get started, you're GOING to get attacked. You'll be sleepy, bored, tired, drained & you'll find a million reasons to sleep in. Just fight through it & TELL your flesh what to do. Remember that you're supposed to be controlling it--it's not supposed to be controlling you.

2. Find a place to have your quiet time everyday. When I lived in a studio in New York years ago with a roommate, I had my quiet time in the bathroom. It didn't matter WHERE I did it.. I just needed HIM. Now, thankfully, I have more room to jump around. I also love worshipping God in different places.. different hotels, beaches, whenever--however. So if you're traveling a ton--don't worry! Just find a place that is NOT distracting you from that time.

3. Set the atmosphere. I like to put worship music on when I first get started. When you're pouring out your heart to God & worshipping Him--it's nice to have beautiful music playing in the background. I look at it like a brush scrubbing off of your "funk" of stresses, worries and cares. It sets your heart to receive your study time & helps de-clutter your mind because you're taking the focus from YOU & your stuff to Jesus. While I'm playing the worship music, I have a blast! I dance, sing, I fall flat on my face before God, cry out to Him, pray in the tongues & pray for others.

My favorite worship singers: Jesus Culture, Kari Jobe, Hillsong, Jeremy Riddle & New Life Worship

4. Get quiet. After I pour out to God.. I grab my journal & I start journaling to God. I just write whatever He puts on my heart.. during these times, He begins to deal with me about what's going on in my life, ministry, work, jobs, family, and in the world in general. I have pages and pages of journals since I first got saved in 2003. It's so amazing to see the things that God said come to pass from when I was 20.

5. Talk to God. Don't go to God all deep. TALK to Him the way you would talk to a very close friend. He's not in the thee's & "thou's"--I can't talk to God all deep. I need to be myself and if He's going to be my Everything, I have to be real with Him. So when I first got saved (and to this day) I go to God... and say .. "Good morning Daddy!!! I'm suuuuuuuuuper excited about today.. I have a brand new day to worship you with my life--I'm so grateful, so thankful for you.  You're everything to me. I'm nothing without you.." Sometimes, I cook breakfast for Him & I'll sit & just talk to Him. I may say "Lord, this really bothered me, or this MADE me mad and I know it's wrong but darnit

6. Pull out your bibles! Grab your pen & paper. It's time to LEARN. Usually, God places a certain scripture on my heart but if you're just getting started, I recommend you all to read John first, then Matthew, Mark and Luke. Then go into Acts and read through the New Testament. Most of the New Testament is prophecy that comes to pass from the Old Testament. Be sure to study Romans and Philippians. Grasp an understanding that the law in the Old Testament has been fulfilled when Jesus came to the earth & NOW you're saved by FAITH through Christ Jesus. I also do this.. if I'm struggling in a certain area--I always look up EVERY scripture on that area & meditate on it for awhile. I write out the scriptures in long hand and put them notecards. And I STARE at them, think about them, study them out, look up the definitions on each word. When you cross reference & pull out your bible dictionary.. the Holy Spirit is going to take you ALL over & give you so much "word behind the word." THEN when stupid thoughts come in--I captured the thought & I MADE it obey Christ. (2 Cor. 10:5). I had SOMETHING in my heart that made it obey Christ. You cannot be empty.. fighting with willpower.

Some of my favorite study bibles & resources:
  1. Life Application Study Bible
  2. Joyce Meyer Everyday Living Bible
  3. Dakes Study Bible
  4. Students Life Application Bible
  5. NASB Cross Reference Bible
  6. The Power of Speaking God's Word by Joyce Meyer (a small concordance--perfect for quick studying)
  7. Beth Moore has some great study resources. I always recommend a book/question study.


7. Then, be quiet. After you study each scripture.. let God speak to you again. Remember he's your FRIEND. (James 2:23)

As I've always said before.. make spending time with God fun!! Sometimes, I go to a Coffee Shop with just me & Him & will read & study. When I was single, I would dress up, make reservations and take my bible & have a date night! I would go to the movies with Jesus! I would cook him dinner, brownies AND we'd watch a movie at home alone. We'd go grocery shopping together. At nighttime, I would talk to Him about what I should wear the next day (sometimes, we would disagree lol) I would ask Him how He wants me to wear my hair. I would go for a jog in the morning to clear my head & just talk to Him about anything and everything. That MAY sound weird to you but if YOU want Jesus to really be your LIFE--you need to start INCLUDING Him into EVERY aspect of your LIFE.

So you take ALL of that.. & then go apply whatever He tells you to do. I started to obey Christ..whenever He told me to do something. You hear God's voice through your inner ear and some would call it your "gut", conscience or "just something told you that you should have done that." I always CHECK my peace. If something comes up--I immediately tune into the Holy Spirit and I can tell if He is tugging my heart one way or another. I LISTEN to that peace. A great checker is if you're in an unhealthy relationship & God is telling you to leave it--you won't have any peace about the person. The more time you spend with God, the more you'll be able to recognize His voice. Join me in committing to spending this time with God everyday.

Last point.. do NOT make the above a law. As I said--salvation is through faith now in Jesus Christ & not according to any law. I used to spend time with God out of fear--thinking that He would hate me if I didn't spend time with Him. Spend time with GOD out of your Love for Him. Just like you would spend time with your spouse because you love them.. same goes for God. Remember grace..grace..grace. If you aren't there "yet"--ask GOD to help you to desire spending time with Him. God will meet you wherever you are.

My hubby, Cornelius taught a message on "How to Study The Bible"--I encourage you to check it out:--->>here.
God loves you like crazy,

Love,
Heather

58 comments:

  1. Love this! Very easy to understand and applicable! I love studying and getting out my Bibles, concordances, doing word studies, and just allowing Holy Spirit to guide me! Sooo many precious things come out of our time with Him! Its nothing like it!

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  2. And I love him like crazy. I know what you mean about just pouring out your true self to Him. He already knows, he's just waiting for us to talk to Him so he can begin the process to meet us where we are. God's amazing and so are you, Heather. Thanks for letting Him use you!

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  3. This is extremely helpful, Heather. I've been reading more and more but never really had an idea of how to "study" the Bible except to read and re-read. It has gotten easier to understand and I've come to a point where I WANT to everyday. You've made some great points and I plan to incorporate some things into my time with Him :)

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  4. This is awesome! Over the years I've found the more I study His word & the more I seek Him - the more I desire to spend time with Him. He is my most favorite person. None can compare....

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  5. That was amazing! :) im so lookin forward to waking up and goin deeper in my time with Him. These are awesome things to consider! Thanks for sharing! Truly a blessing and helpful for taking that next big step!

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  6. Thank you for this! Just what I needed!!! <3

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  7. This was very easy to follow and genuine.

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  8. This is great I like the fact you give us tips developing that relationship. I prayed to God and I asked him to make me desire to spend time with him. Oh that is exactly what God did! I have found so much peace sometime I just find myself walking and talking to God. When I look back on my life and where I am now in Christ. I am thankful for him showing me his love and letting me experience it! Just an AMAZING feeling. I am still a work a progress, but I am thankful for his grace.

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  9. Thanks for sharing sis! I remember when you first taught me how to "enjoy" spending time with God! I had never heard that before. My love life with Jesus has been beyond fulfilling and full of so much peace, love and joy since then! ♥ you!

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  10. Wow God is so good before i read this, this song was in my spirit, The more i seek you by Kari Jobe! Absolutely love this song. And i will definitely follow the step you gave on how to spend time with God. Thank you and continue to serve God he is smiling down on you.God Bless

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  11. awesome i found the music quite while you read works effectively usually i would just worship by using hillsong songs and would stop then get into the word. i wake up 5am everyday lol, He is more important than my sleep

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  12. This was a really go artical and it was very helpful. Thanks you so much for sharing!!!!! God Bless

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  13. Thank you so much this will really help me a lot!

    From
    Desperate for JESUS!

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  14. I love this. I love how you explain your spending time with God in such an easy manner. Its something I can definitely relate to & have adapted it to my life.

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  15. Wow! This is really great stuff! I've recently started spending consistent quiet time with God. This will help a lot of people who are seeking a closer relationship with Christ. Thank you for sharing! Also, check out my blog: http://quenchnot.wordpress.com.

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  16. just awesome and simple and i will be following your tips thanks a million and God loves us all and i have read your blogs your a straight and true sister thanks for the honesty and showing us how to love God

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  17. It gives me so much joy to read this post and understand how I have been feeling since I got saved. I find myself praying silently in my head, having a two way conversation with my heart, thinking about the consequences of been friends with Jesus and knowing that I have to listen to his instruction. But I have to say, I am so consumed by the desire to be alone with him, I feel disconnected from my non believer friends or those who claim to
    be christain but not living like one. Thank you for this wonderful post.

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  18. I love that last point, not to make it a law, but instead to do it out of love...That was an awesome point! Thanks Sis in Christ

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  19. I have to read this blog over & over until it resonates with me. I look forward to the day, when spending time with God is something I cannot do without, a time when seeking God's face becomes my life. I know your relationship with God today is where it is, because of the time u invested in building it, and the dedication you had in making God your number one. I pray I get there. I will heed your advice and get the studying tools, as well as starting with the book of John. Thank u Heather for sharing this. I was blessed.

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  20. Heather, are there any books you can recommend to me that has helped you in your spiritual work.Like the best books that you read, that changed your perspective on life, and each time you read it meant something different for you. I hope you get the idea. Thanks

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    1. Sure!
      Crazy Love- by Francis Chan
      Forgotten God- by Francis Chan
      The Shack- by: ??
      Created to Be His HelpMeet- by Debi Pearl
      Humility- by Andrew Murray
      Her Lady, Her Lover & Her Lord- TD Jakes
      Battlefield of the Mind- by Joyce Meyer

      xo

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    2. Thank you Heather for replying. I have read two books from your list,I can't wait to see the rest.

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  21. Hey! I just wanted to know what you use the notecards for again? I want to use my notecards to write down scriptures I want to meditate on but wanted to ask you again too.

    Patrease

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    1. That's it! :) Just to write scriptures down & to meditate on them!

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  22. Hey heather,

    Love the blog. God bless, how did you combat the thoughts and really stay focused on God to hear Him? Because I try to but I find myself either thinking about something else or Judy silent but not hearing any inner voice at all? I'm like does this take some months? I've been a believer for some, years but I've just I've never really heard His voice. Im eager to hear His voice but there's too many mind distractions. Also I'm using Dake's bible to read the bible? And I read the notes and the kittle references but I find myself still coming out the same and no revelation or ven anything that lys heavily on my heart. If you have any advice please give.

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    1. Hey check my blog on "How to Hear from God" that will help! I just posted it a couple weeks ago! <3

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  23. Awesome post! Thanks so much! I really needed this.

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  24. I had to clap for that comment you wrote, "If He's my husband I need to REALLY act like I'm married to Him & not CHEAT on Him with this world." You don't even understand how that relates to me. Thank you !

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  25. I just stated reading your blogs and they are soo inspiring and helpful thanks for that

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  26. This gave so much confirmation to me. Thank you!

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  27. Before I say anything, I would first like to say thank you for being obedient to God and allowing Him to use you. This blog has truly blessed me, so I will join you in committing my time to God everyday. God bless you and your family Mrs. Lindsey

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    1. Rikeshia Precious BaxterMay 3, 2013 at 6:19 PM

      I agree with this lady. Thanks for your obedience to Jesus, and casting in His sweet love!God bless!

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  28. You are an amazing woman of God! You remind me of my Pastor's daughter. She was the one who really thrusted me into an intimate relationship with God and when she said that we can ask Him how He would like us to do our hair and stuff, I was sooooo eager to go home and try it! That was when I was 15 and I'm 24 now. I've never been the same since:) I know you will reach many girls from this blog, especially those that don't have fatehrs because we often seek that attention in the wrong places, not knowing that GOD ALMIGHTY literally wants to spend time with us every second of the day! Keep up the good work for JESUS!

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  29. Dear Heather, I love your blog and all your posts. Just wanted to put in a little warning on Joyce Mayer. She has a lot of false teachings in her ministry about Jesus paying for our sins in hell, not on the cross, about us being sinless.
    Keep on doing what you are doing!

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    1. Rikeshia Precious BaxterMay 3, 2013 at 6:22 PM

      The devil is a liar Anonymous!Joyce Meyer teachings are biblical and edifying!God bless, and save your soul!
      Rikeshia

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  30. AMEN! When i read you, and your husbands posts it encourages me in many ways. Thank you for listening to the Spirit, and letting Him use you to speak to us. GOD BLESS YOU LINDSEYS :)

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  31. Dear Heather! I am so blown by your blog. Since, I discovered it, cannot stop reading everything you wrote! I am so thankful how God is using you to turn my life around for real. I recently moved to China for work but in the middle of that. I wonder why God took me away from my family, friends and everything else. I left my comfort zone!On the other hand, He brought me here to work on my inside out. I am single and yes I was a hot mess like you describe your single life.I highly believe I am here in China to be transformed and God is using you through your blog to show me that everything is possible with HIM. Thank you!

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  32. I think I needed a little reminder so I re-read this...thanks sis! <3


    xoxo
    Ashley Flores
    alwaysashley2012.blogspot.com

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  33. Heather,

    The fact that you wrote this on my birthday is so awesome to me.. Add to that my recent struggle to consistently spend time with God and you have an awestruck me! God is so intentional and strategic about everything He does.. Simple things (like this post) continue to show me just how much He cares for me :-) Thank you!

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  34. When I first got saved I started out spending time in God's word, praying throughout the day, worship everyday, listening to biblical teaching, then god begin to speak to me, give me visions, and direction. Then idk I started working more hours, missing church, becoming super busy, and I allowed myself to become distracted away from the things of god, and I want to be in a close relationship with him, and I think 2013 is the year to get back on track with god and stay on the path, because I want truely want his will and his way for my life, thank you for this blog, the holy spirit led me to it!

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  35. this is amazing thankyou soooooooooooo much you have no idea bless u xx li

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  36. This is amazing! I'm definitely at that stage in life where I want to spend more time with God but actually getting to grips with doing it is a mental struggle. Thank you for this post- such a blessing :)

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  37. This is simply amazing!!i used to wonder how to spend time with God and how to get to know Him more...u have shed more light on what i can do to get closer to God!Thank you!

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  38. I know I'm late but thank you for this post! For a while I have had a strong thirst and hunger to spend time with God more consistently, but I just wasn't sure how to go about it until now.

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  39. sounds great! thanks for the tips!

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  40. I recently discovered your blog and i must say that it has been an inspiration. I look forward to reading an article every single day. Its teaching me everyday on how to dwell in God, Thank you so much Heather. May you continue reaching more souls and may God bless you abundantly. Josphine from Nairobi, Kenya

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  41. No joke when I saw that one of your favorite worship singers was Jesus Culture I got excited lol I love Jesus Culture. Their music really ushers God into the atmosphere. My friends tease me about my worship style. They say "if DeeDee (my nick name) isn't on the floor in tears, then the Lord ain't there." Wherever there's worship, there I am in tears. Jesus Culture + worship time + me = knees on ground + tears in eyes + praying in tongues lmbo

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  42. Thank you sooo much..I really found your blog at the right time..I am going to turn 30 soon and just waiting with all my heart for my husband..I never had a boyfriend and know God has chosen the perfect person for me and will send him in his own time..I am really thankful to you..God Bless and hope to find my husband soon :)

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  43. Hi Heather,
    i got to your blog because I was looking for relationships God's way,and I got yours or I should say my eyes fastened into your blog.Amazing hows God's word has life for us, I am a Christian have been sine 1986 was on fire for God,but strayed allowing issues,and other things to creep in, but recently(yesterday) rededicated my life after straying from God but in all this time I have never had a relationship as you described it. Its what i want and you have provided a very piratical way of doing that.I want to know God as he knows me its so amazing that he wants to be with me even though he knows me, I am in awe of him

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  44. Thanks for sharing this! So inspiring c:

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  45. Everyone that speaks in tongues should read this article. Do you truly want to please God? Many sincere Christians, who love the Lord, believe that speaking in tongues is a valid gift from God today. They do so because they have been taught that tongues is a valid gift today, which is the dominate theme of the Pentecostal and Charismatic movements. It is not my intent to be condemning or rude, but with a loving and caring spirit present God's truth to people who have been ill-taught about this matter.

    Read More Here: http://bible-truth.org/tongues.html

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  46. My experience with Baptist/evangelical theology can best be described as a wild Roller Coaster ride: a lot of great psychological, emotional, and spiritual highs and a lot of deep psychological, emotional, and spiritual lows. Why?

    In Baptist/evangelical theology, your Justification and your Sanctification---your essence as a follower of Christ...if you boil it all down...is really dependent on you and your feelings. Your salvation is dependent on you performing an action; a deed; a good deed: making a mature, informed, decision; the correct decision… for Christ. And your assurance of salvation is based on you maintaining a sufficient level of "feeling Christ’s presence within you" to confirm that your previous “decision for Christ” was done correctly and sincerely. Why else would so many Baptists and evangelicals report having multiple “born again” experiences?

    Do I feel saved? Do I feel I really repented in my born again experience? Do I feel that I truly had faith when I made a decision for Christ; when I prayed a version of the Sinner's Prayer? If I am really saved, why do I feel at times that my faith is so weak? Maybe I need to do the born again experience again; maybe I need to pray the Sinner's Prayer again, just to be 100% sure that I am saved. I want to know without any doubt that I am saved, and if I do not feel saved, I begin to doubt my salvation.

    Baptist/evangelical theology tells me that I will always feel Christ's presence and strength inside me...if I am a true believer. But what if I don't feel him there sometimes? If it is true that I should always be able to hear God speak to me, in an inner voice or feel his inner presence move me/lead me to do his will, what is going on when I don't hear anything or feel anything? Have I committed some unknown sin and he is refusing to hear me? Or is the reason that I don't hear or feel him present within me... is because I'm not really saved!

    I was so incredibly happy to find orthodox (confessional) Lutheranism and find out that my feelings have nothing to do with my Justification, my salvation, or with my Sanctification, my walk with my Savior and Lord! My salvation was accomplished 100% by God. He placed the free gift of salvation in my "lap" before I even considered asking for it. He wrapped me in the "blanket" of salvation without my assistance. I am God's by his choice, not mine!

    http://www.lutherwasnotbornagain.com/2013/09/is-jesus-your-friend-or-your-king.html

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  47. Im a 15 year old girl and been saved for five and one day would like to meet u because u have givien some great advice and Confidence.

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  48. Thank you for this insightful message. It is important that we learn how to spend time with God in an easy, setp-by-step format. This has given me confidence in my quiet time, knowing that I am making a decision to learn how to spend quality time with God, rather than just confused empty space. Thank you for the tips!

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