About Belinda Williams

Thursday, March 26, 2015

The Painful Truth of Love

Love is the most powerful emotion and expression of selflessness in the world.    People have done magnificent things and absolutely absurd things and called it love.  True love is not limited to marriage or an expression between a man or woman.  True love flows from God Himself.  God demonstrated His love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we violated every aspect of His love (Romans 5:8).  Think about it.  If the one you truly love is cheating on you, will you, in return, sacrifice the most precious thing in your life for that person?  Not likely.  It is hard to fathom God's love in a real way.  The easiest thing to do is just openly receive it and trust that as you experience it, you will understand it more and more.

The painful truth is most people in this world spend their lives searching for authentic love.   They pursue the shadow of true love, but never the love of Almighty God.  Most settle for a perverted form of love that is self-seeking, self-serving and without restraint.  Perverted love hurts, denigrates,  kills and even crashes planes into mountains.  Whereas the love of God is consumed with the light of His presence; perverted love finds its voice in darkness and touches the heart with hate.  It is imperative for those who know the love of God to share it without limit.  Light always overwhelms darkness and love is the only force that defeats hate every time. 

Love never gives up
Love cares more for others than for self
Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have
Love doesn’t strut 
Doesn’t have a swelled head
Doesn’t force itself on others 
Isn’t always “me first
Doesn’t fly off the handle
Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others
Doesn’t revel when others grove
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth
Puts up with anything
Trusts God always
Always looks for the best
Never looks back
But keeps going to the end 
Love never dies

(1Corinthians 13:4-8a MSG)

That's Love and it is glorious!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Praises, Prayers and Petitions

Psalms 145:18(NKJV)
18    The Lord is near to all who call upon Him,     To all who call upon Him in truth.

Praise Reports
Breena - received a job
Germany Trip Effective

Prayer Requests
Cathy - inner healing and deliverance
Doris Peters - incurable eye disease
Marilyn - extensive burns on body
Leo - Salvation
Michael - Salvation

Population     29.7 million

Christian         8.4% (3.2)

Thursday, March 19, 2015

You Can Call Me Al

I was sitting in a bus riding across the tarmac of the Schiphol airport in Amsterdam.  The radio was playing and I could hear Paul Simon singing, "If you'll be my bodyguard, I can be your long lost pal.  I can call you Betty and Betty when you call me, you can call me Al."  My first inclination was to sing along and then I thought, many of the Dutch can barely speak English and yet, they are listening to American music.  Hmmmm.  As I continued to think about it, I remembered being in Cuba and hearing nothing but Motown music blasting at the hostel where we were staying.  Or being in South Africa and watching a couple dance in celebration of their anniversary to Lady in Red by Lionel Ritchie.  After letting my mind traverse borders and continents and the accompanying musical soundtrack playing in my head, I knew for sure that music is no respecter of person.  It is there for all to enjoy.

Music has the ability to transcend time, economics, race and nationality.  There is something about a string of notes, a thoughtful lyric and a catchy melody that makes your heart sing.  Music can lift you up, move your feet (even when rhythmically challenged), and inspire you to think outside of the box.  Music can shape the way you think and what you appreciate.  There isn't a culture on earth that doesn't appreciate music.

But let's face the truth.  Music can move our emotions, but it doesn't change our hearts.  For that to happen, it needs to be combined with the love of God.   As human beings, there is a part of us that longs to know our Creator and have an intimate relationship with Him.  When that desire and later experience is put to music, the heavens join in as we sing praises to our God.  The love of God knows no boundaries, limits, barriers or mindsets that it cannot pull down, rearrange and realign.  Music that celebrates our Lord, Savior and God can produce eternal changes in every aspect of our lives.  It then becomes the melodies of our hearts and of heaven.

We are living in a time where race relations are strained in many countries.  Hate is making itself evident in America, Europe, Africa and in countries around the world.  The only thing that can squash hate is the love of God.  His love changes us from the inside out.  It causes us to see ourselves and others in the light of His grace, forgiveness and holiness.  God's love never fails.  When we take His love and put it to music, true poetry is the result.

I don't know about you, but I could sing of His love forever.....

Thursday, March 12, 2015

I feel like I am in Time Out!

Have you ever received a word of encouragement from the Lord and felt assured that something good was going to happen soon.  You allow your excitement to build and are poised to testify of His goodness and soon as the promises come to past.  You wait patiently (mostly) for the breakthrough, revelation, open door, the healing or whatever it is for you.  Time passes and you are trying to maintain your excitement, except it seems like God forgot your conversation with Him.  He promised it would happen soon.  You wonder exactly how long is soon.  Could shortly and after while be cousins of soon designed to drive you nuts while you wait?  By definition, soon simply means in or after a short time.  Does heaven have a different definition of soon? Could soon possibly mean something different to you than it does to God? 

There are many words and phrases in the bible that are like soon.  They are demarcations of time, but it is not time that we can truly measure by man-made standards.  God has His timing that is perfect and right.  It is our desire to move in His timing and in the proper season.  But the waiting can be taxing.  You know the time is near.  You can sense it.  You can almost tangibly feel it.  Yet, there is no manifestation yet.  Then you begin to doubt yourself.  Did I hear correctly?  Did I do something wrong?  Is God punishing me and I am actually sitting in time out with my arms crossed and my bottom lip sticking out?  It may feel that way, but you are just in the holding room of God’s blessings. 

It is during these times of waiting that we trust in Word of the Lord and His promises, the faithfulness of God and His unending, never-failing love.  In the waiting time, God is working in us and for us.  Don’t doubt.  Meditate on His Goodness.  Keep the vision/dream/promise before you.  Trust God and wait.

Habakkuk 2:2-3(NKJV)
2Then the Lord answered me and said:  “Write the vision And make it plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it. 3For the vision is yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie.  Though it tarries, wait for it; Because it will surely come, It will not tarry.

Psalms 27:13-14(NKJV)
13    I would have lost heart, unless I had believe That I would see the goodness of the Lord In the land of the living. 14Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord!

Lamentations 3:25-26(NKJV)
25    The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, To the soul who seeks Him.  26 It is good that one should hope and wait quietly For the salvation of the Lord.

Isaiah 40:31(NKJV)
31    But those who wait on the Lord  Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint. 

Hebrews 12:1(NKJV)
1Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 

Wait on Him!  It is coming and it is GOOD!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Praises, Prayers and Petitions

Praise Reports
BSW’s trip to Germany going well
Michael feeling better
Bob - Diabetes returning to normal

Prayer Requests:
Marco – healing
Ronald – Cancer
Marilyn – Burns
Sandy – Stomach issues
Sent Ones legal filing approved on first pass

Population 1.33 million
8.2% Christian (2.3% Evangelical)

Bahrain, which means “two seas,” is an archipelago in the Persian Gulf off the coast of Saudi Arabia. The islands for the most part are level expanses of sand and rock. A causeway connects Bahrain to Saudi Arabia.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Denying and Lying

Several years ago, one of my friends came home from a hectic day at work only to find that her nephew's head was half shaved.  To protect the innocent, let's just call him Buzz.  Since Buzz lived with her, she knew when he received haircuts and knew this was an unauthorized cut.  The boy resembled Mr. McGoo.  As she questioned him about his head, his responses went from denial of knowing what happened to an outright lie.  The story he decided to go with was that he was reaching into the closet and the clippers jumped out and hit him on the head shaving him in the process.  You have to understand, he was around 13 years old.  He didn't think through basic facts like the clippers needing  electricity  to work or how they got out of the box.  I told her what I knew to be the absolute truth - a girl was involved.  Indeed, that was the case.

If you think Buzz's lie was good, think about Aaron's lie.  Buzz was  only 13, impressionable and still maturing.  Aaron was consecrated as Israel's first high priest.  This was after the Lord used he and Moses to deliver the children of Israel.  He knew better.  Yet not long after the consecration, Aaron participated in a heinous sin.

Exodus 32:1-4(NKJV)
1Now when the people saw that Moses delayed coming down from the mountain, the people gathered together to Aaron, and said to him, “Come, make us gods that shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man who brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.”  2And Aaron said to them, “Break off the golden earrings which are in the ears of your wives, your sons, and your daughters, and bring them to me.”  3So all the people broke off the golden earrings which were in their ears, and brought them to Aaron.  4And he received the gold from their hand, and he fashioned it with an engraving tool, and made a molded calf. Then they said, “This is your god, O Israel, that brought you out of the land of Egypt!”

When Moses came down off the mountain after calming the Lord's anger, he confronted Aaron.  Aaron's lie was about as creative as Buzz's lie.  He went into denying, lying and playing the blame game.

Exodus 32:21-24(NKJV)
21And Moses said to Aaron, “What did this people do to you that you have brought so great a sin upon them?”  22So Aaron said, “Do not let the anger of my lord become hot. You know the people, that they are set on evil.  23For they said to me, ‘Make us gods that shall go before us; as for this Moses, the man who brought us out of the land of Egypt, we do not know what has become of him.’  24And I said to them, ‘Whoever has any gold, let them break it off.’ So they gave it to me, and I cast it into the fire, and this calf came out.”

Moses saw the burning bush; but believing a fire that can spontaneously produce a golden calf aka false god....umm not so much.  I don't think there is ever a good lie - a more creative one yes, but lying is never good.  Aaron's lie was neither good nor creative.  He just didn't want to be in trouble with Moses.

We shouldn't be critical of Aaron since many of us have behaved similarly.  I've heard many creative excuses as to why some people can't attend bible study, Sunday school, give in the offering, sing in the choir, etc.  We have plenty of justifications for why we don't read more, pray more, study more, serve more, etc.  We give answers that are full of everything but faith when we explain why we don't obey the great commission to go be witnesses, to work miracles in the lives of those around us or to make Jesus known wherever we find ourselves.   These excuses we give are usually denials that have advanced to well dressed lies.  When we deny ourselves to follow God, nothing comes before Him, His commands or His leading.  Anything offered as a reason for disobedience to His will is a denial of His sovereignty and leadership in our lives.  In order to continue in disobedience, we must believe that our reasoning trumps His commands leaving us lying to ourselves and others.

Let the clippers jump out of the closet and snip the cords of excuses, denials and lies.  Repent and be refreshed.  His forgiveness is waiting for you.  

Monday, March 2, 2015

Praises, Prayers and Petitions

Psalms 28:2(NKJV)
2 Hear the voice of my supplications.  When I cry to You,  When I lift up my hands toward Your holy sanctuary.

Praise Reports:
·         Angela - recovering well from near death experience
·         Sarah - biopsy negative

Prayer Requests:
·         Shane - hurt in car accident; daughter killed
·         Ami - diagnosed with mild autism
·         GC - life for residents of facility
·         Willetta - healing for heart and body
·         Ruth - total healing
·         Fiona - healing  - car accident
·         Ronald - Cancer

·         Population:  1.86 million
·         Christian:  3.1% (.6 % Evangelical)
·         Life Expectancy : 53 years

·         Surrounded by Senegal on three sides