All posts by admin

The Advantage of Gentleness

 

Advantage-open

In our fast paced, market driven culture you don’t hear a whole lot about gentleness. We rarely hear about this powerful principle with such a great promise attached to it, yet it is one of the most important principles you should know. Today the words meek or gentle have become synonyms to the word weak, and gentleness or meekness is anything but that. Let me give you a true definition of gentleness.

Gentleness is strength under control.

The Bible teaches us that real gentleness is not weakness; but rather it’s strength under control. We’ve all worked with, worked for, worship with, or maybe even lived with some of the edgiest people. You know, people who are so moody that anything can cause them fly off the handle. Quick tempered; quick to let somebody have it; cut throat; manipulative; do whatever to get ahead; or take what belonged to someone else. These characteristics does not denote strength. Instead, they symbolize weakness. A gentle person is not driven by their own emotions nor do they overreact off of any or every little thing. A gentle person is not irrational, unruly, or unmanageable.

In fact, gentleness in the Bible was actually used to refer to a wild stallion that had been tamed. You could go out in the fields and hills and find a wild stallion who is strong and unbridled and has enormous strength, however they can kick you and kill you pretty quickly. But if you bring that stallion back and you tame it then the strength is brought under control. The strength is bottled up for the master’s use and now the stallion is useful. A tamed horse is no less strong than a wild horse. It has just as much strength and can go just as fast. But a tamed horse, a meek horse, a gentle horse is one that is strength under control. It is bottled up for the master’s use.

Gentleness is accepting the way God deals with your life with a good attitude…

Another Greek meaning for gentleness is to be humbled unto God; to have a mild disposition towards God and accepting to the way that He deals with your life. Meaning you accept the dealings of God with a decent attitude and without the dispute. It would do us some good to yield when God is after something in our lives; get out of the way and say, “Lord have your way in me”. We often times resist arrest causing ourselves and the loved ones connected to us to have to go around the same mountain over and over again.

In the old testament the meek people were the people who relied on God to defend them wholeheartedly. They trusted in God. And God fought the battle for them. Today with all of the power, options, and liberties we have, we forget to remember that the battle is the still the Lord’s. With good intentions, we take on battles when sometimes it’s wiser to just sit back and let the Lord take over the fight. I’ve learned not to go after anything in my own strength. I have before, and was sorry that I did. Sometimes you have call yourself on the carpet. Admit that you were in over your head, correct yourself, and turn the reigns over to God. Whenever you can do that you have strength under control.

Patience persuades rulers, and gentleness can break a bone…Proverbs 25:15

In other words, gentleness can get through to a hard head! We all have the tendency to mirror the image that is presented to us. For instance, have you ever found yourself in an argument and someone raises their voice at you and before you know it you’re raising yours to match theirs? Of course you have. We all have. There is a science to this. Energy, whether negative or positive, is transferrable. If you’re not careful you can become susceptible to being caught up into something you never intended to be in. We’ve all been there. We’ve said or done hurtful things out of the adrenaline to win the fight or out of retaliation to avenge yourself; yet you end up regretting over half of it if not all of it after its said and done.

This is the significance of embracing the principle of gentleness. It’s being able to resist the default reactions that only escalates conflicts. If you’re abrasive, you’re not persuasive. If you have the ability to talk gently and remain calm in the midst of raging chaos, you have the key to unlock any door that belongs to you. When you have gentleness, you then have persuasive power. There’s so much more that I will share with you in this month’s partner, The Advantage of Gentleness. When you embrace the principle of gentleness, you can embrace the promise of your inheritance.

To add this resource to your library visit our online store HERE

The Case of a Stolen Identity

StolenIdentity-Banner

If you’ve ever encountered fraudulent activity or any other form of identity theft, you know first-hand how helpless, vulnerable and violated you’re left feeling. Your entire identity has been contaminated, corrupted or completely erased. Trying to reclaim who you are through the rubble and ruins of what’s left after the damage is done would be a very scary experience. You may not realize it but, this is exactly what Satan is trying to do to your true identity in Christ; he’s trying to erase it.

There’s a spiritual war going on over your identity.

Since the enemy is not a creator, and has never created anything, he can only attempt to pervert, distort, or destroy what God has created. Only God creates, so what Satan desires to do is take what God created for good and pervert it for evil. He wants nothing more than to hurt God by hurting His creation; and that’s you and me.

Satan knows that if he can keep you from being you; if he can hide your true identity and who God intended for you to be, his mission is accomplished. So he uses tools like the opinions of others, hurts from your past, social media and culture to imply that you’ll never be good enough to keep you in the “comparison trap”. He uses tools to plant seeds, ideas and suggestions so that a cycle of negativity stays on constant repeat in your mind with the purpose of concealing and keeping you from knowing who you really are in Christ.

When you know who’s you are, you then know who you are.

I know we hear that a lot, but you’d be surprise to know the number of people who sit right next to you in the pews at church, in the cubicles across from you at work, or live on the same street as you that struggle with an identity crisis. If we’re truly honest, it easily happens to the best of us. That’s why it’s so imperative that we intentionally take control of every thought, idea, or suggestion that’s not congruent with who God says we are and cast it out. Yes, you have the power to evict every ungodly thought out of your mind.

Every thought that comes through your mind has an agenda. You have to be the gate keeper of those thoughts and filter through what came from God and cast down what did not! God thoughts bring inspiration. Satan’s thoughts bring temptation. His goal is to distract you and keep you from becoming aware of your confidence and your inherited power in Christ
.
If you’ve ever questioned your value or self-worth, just look to calvary…

Make no mistake about it, God calls you priceless! He sent His son, laid down His life, to pay a debt that we could never ever repay. He rescued us. He redeemed us. And He restores us to Him daily. I don’t care what the enemy comes in your life to suggest to you, remember that you are His most treasured possession. Jeremiah 31:3 says, “I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love, I have drawn you to myself.” (NLT). What an amazing love. Allow this message to equip you on how to daily safeguard your identity in Christ so that you can confidently walk in the purpose and destiny God has called you to; keeping the plans and tricks of the enemy under your feet where they belong.

To add this resource to your library click the links below…

DVD
CD
MP3

Peace Under Pressure

 

PeaceUnder-Banner

It would only take a glance at social media or watching the nightly news to know that many people are suffering from mishandled pressure. They are living their lives under immense weights that often create devastating consequences. Without understanding what can cause such destructive pressure and how to handle it with divine peace, we will not understand how to persevere during the confusing, chaotic events of life. There is no better example of how to rise above what the world will put you through, than to explore what unfolds the last days in the life of Jesus.

He was divine enough to redeem us yet He was human enough to relate to us.

A third of the gospels talks about the most stressful week in the life of Jesus. Like us, He too could feel the pressures going on around Him. The ridicule, mocking, criticism, being beaten beyond recognition, the lies He had to endure, the risks He had to take, all building up to the fulfillment of what the prophets said. It is during this time that we gain insight into what it means to have inward peace while dealing with outward pressure.

Stress is inevitable but it’s manageable…

The first way to balance stress in your lives is to have an eternal balance of who you are and who you’re striving to please. This is so important especially in the midst of pressure. If you don’t know who you are, you will allow other people to manipulate you into being somebody you’re not and always striving to please man. Jesus knew who He was and who’s He was. He knew what God required of Him. He knew going into Jerusalem that He would bridge the gap between a sinful man and a Holy God. God was depending on Him. Mankind was depending on Him and He was determined to complete His assignment. He was about to walk across history’s stage for the last time and He knew it. Despite the danger before Him, He remained composed.

Only inward peace can create that kind of strength, that kind of courage.

The enemy would like nothing better than to create pressure that will make you revert to the places from which you have already been delivered. If he can disturb your peace, he has access to your heart and your mind. The next thing you know, pressure producers like insecurities, unrealistic goals, a lack of balance, etc., will begin to impede your progress. The good news is, it does not have to be that way. You do not have to have a heart attack when you are under pressure. Have a prayer attack instead.

It is imperative to make prayer a personal habit. Often times we start the day off completely wrong. We get up, turn on the TV and we get bad news. We check our social media feeds for some more bad news. And on the way to work we’re listening to radio… for more bad news! As if we don’t have enough of our own problems, we turn around and add on all the problems of the world! By the time we get to work, we really do have the weight of the world on our shoulders.

Instead, start your morning with prayer like Jesus, waiting for instructions. This principle is vital to maintaining peace of mind. Acknowledging Him and asking Him to order your steps throughout the day recharges your spiritual batteries, relieves stress, and gives you grace for endurance. It is freeing to know you don’t have to succumb to the pressures, demands and difficulties of life. You can take it all to the Lord in prayer and leave it there.

He is the Prince of Peace

You will never have ultimate inner peace or peace of mind until you intentionally invest and set aside time alone with the Prince of Peace. Talk to Him and tell Him all about what’s stressing you and He’ll talk to you about you. Beautiful moments where you can exchange your heaviness for His unspeakable joy. It’s like entering a decompression chamber, releasing all of your pressures. But those moments cannot happen until we pause, turn down the volume of life and be still.

“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalms 46:10

So many of our problem’s simply come from our inability to be still. We get so busy doing what we do, we forget the important reasons behind what we do. No matter how busy Jesus got, He made it a practice to spend time alone with God. I encourage you to make it a personal practice in your life today. If Jesus was busy and made time for prayer, how much more do you and I need it?

You may not think it’s possible to do everything you need to do in the midst of what you’re facing, but you can. You may not believe you can carry what is going on outwardly without caving in, but you can. These principles will prepare you and empower you to have “Peace Under Pressure.”

If you’d like to add this resource to your library visit HERE

Secrets of an Effective Life

Secrets-Banner

SECRETS OF AN EFFECTIVE LIFE

Whether it is in our businesses, our homes, our churches, or our communities, one of the most common desires is to be effective. No one wants to aimlessly wander through life without a goal or target in view. Each day you want to do whatever it is with all of your might, and on purpose. Whatever your assignments happen to be, at the end of the day you want to have run your race and finished your course with joy. Though most share the common desire to be effective, many struggle in reservation of their own capability and have a lack of courage. Thankfully, God looked beyond our deficiency and saw destiny;  He’s NOTORIOUS for using imperfect people to bring about His perfect plan.

Hebrews Chapter 11 is a book of winners and what I like to call God’s Hall of Fame. It contains stories and statements about ordinary people who accomplished extraordinary things. They were like many of us are today, flawed people, who failed, made bad choices, yet God managed to use them in spite of it all. Moses is one of the many that God managed to use in miraculous ways.

Moses began his life with an identity crisis, yet he is one of the greatest men in the Old Testament…

Moses was born a Jew, but was raised as an Egyptian prince, who later murdered an Egyptian slave master for striking a Hebrew slave. And after fleeing everything he once knew as familiar, comfortable, and accustomed, he asked himself, “Who am I?” In spite of all of that, God’s answer to Moses determined the rest of the course of his miraculous life. God used Moses to lead the children of Israel out of captivity, write the Ten Commandments; he wrote the first five books of the Old Testament and the list of miracles go on and on. You see, Moses uncovered the secrets that allowed him to be effectively used by God, despite how his life began.

Peace rather than Possessions

Just think about it for a moment. Moses began his life as an Egyptian Prince. He could have enjoyed a life of ease in the palace, but Moses was a man of character and integrity. Once he knew the truth, he refused to live a lie. He was not able to sit back and watch his people suffer and be mistreated as slaves. Instead, he chose to become the man God intended for him to be.

Today people have a lot to live on, but very little to live for. Through greed, selfish ambitions, and little regard for others, many have settled into their own comfortable lifestyles suited to their taste. But through character, choices, values and vision God is moving His people into another level of effectiveness, with meaningful fulfillment and gratification. Verses 23 through 27 in Hebrews 11, give us five powerful keys to unlock Moses’ secrets of an effective life: he refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter; he chose to take the harder road; he regarded people more important than possessions; he saw God; and he endured the waiting process. I’m forever grateful for the sacrifice Moses made to be greatly used by God.

God wants to do Greater Things through you!

God has a specific plan for your life and nobody can play your part but you. So if you don’t live your life according to His plan, the world will be robbed of your contribution. Where would we be today without Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Bishop T.D. Jakes, or Bill Gates who lived life according to God’s plan? Will you make a difference, or will the world be robbed of your contribution? I certainly hope not. You have a unique contribution that is vital to the life of someone else. Run after the purpose of God and prepare to be all He has called you to be.

For more on this message on DVD, CD and digital download visit www.sherylbrady.com

 

Unwrap Your Gift

unwrap_open-16x9-(1)

I want to share with you a few tips that I believe will help you to get into your best shape. When you hear phrases like, “getting into shape” we often think about the latest diets, joining the gym, aerobics, so on and so forth. And while all of those things are great and may be necessary, that’s not exactly what I’m referring to. I want to talk to you about getting into your spiritual shape; the shape that God has designed you to be in before the foundations of the world.

There is a pattern that you fit in that helps propel you into your purpose…

Before any of us ever got here, God had already charted the course and planned out the design and shape for our lives. And knowing our shape is the key to finding out the configuration of what God had in mind when He was forming us. Our gifts, abilities, passions, and experiences are all components that make up our shape; and you can avoid a lot of unnecessary detours by discovering the tailor made assignment that God has shaped just for you.

If you’re going to get into shape, you’ve got to Unwrap Your Gifts.

God has given each of us the ability to do certain things well. The gifts that we possess they differ as they are allotted to us by God’s grace and they must be exercised accordingly, Romans 12:6. God will never ask you to do anything that He hasn’t given you the ability to do. So if there’s something that you’re naturally good at, that’s an indicator that God wants you to do it.

He placed within each of us gifts and a natural hunger or desire to seek out the gifts. It’s not enough to just identify them, but it’s our responsibility to explore them. It’s through the exploring process that we learn how to effectively function in and respond to our gifts. As you examine your gifts, you’ll find clues to what it is that you’re purposed to do. It shows you your worth and value, 1Corinthians 6-7; and affirms you. Your gifts will also show you where your fruit is and ultimately, reveal God’s plan for your life.

When you’re fruitful, you’re fulfilled!

Real joy comes when you know your life is productive, it matters, and you’re making it count. When you find your gift you find your joy. It’s so amazing when God takes your gift, opens it up, and uses it to bless someone else. It is one of the most satisfying feelings you can experience. I want to leave you with the following questions that you can ask to help assess your life’s journey and ultimately illuminate your purpose:

• In what ways did I serve the Lord and enjoyed it the most?
• What have I done in my lifetime that I know God has blessed?
• What have I done in my life that has impacted other people?
• What have I done that’s brought the greatest results for the Kingdom of God?

When you mix together the answers to these questions, somewhere in it all, you will discover the will of God for your life.

Fruitful in a Painful Place

fruitful_open

Don’t Stress…You’ve got FAVOR on YOUR side!

To study the life of one of my favorite biblical characters, would take you to Genesis and the life of Joseph. His story is one that I never grow tired of preaching, and I encourage you to read. Maybe it’s because Joseph was a picture of Christ. He was the beloved son of his father Jacob, just like Jesus was the beloved son of God. Joseph came up from the depths of prison into power and Jesus came up from the depths of hell with all power. While there are many parallels, Joseph’s story is a phenomenal illustration of how to survive the painful places when you’ve been invited into greatness and the favor of God is resting on your life.

Great favor brings great jealousy and hatred.

Unfortunately, this comes with the territory. It has absolutely nothing to do with anything you have said, or anything you have done. It is just that God has chosen to set you apart and that makes some uncomfortable. Whenever God begins to bless your life, some will hate you simply because of your favor. It’s easy to become confused. You think others would be happy for you, especially those close to you. Unfortunately, often times, this is not the case.

However, you can’t become discouraged and give up. You have to recognize that your favor belongs to you. No one can take it from you and you can’t give it up just because someone else doesn’t want you to have it. Being hated is a part of being blessed. You can be hated a long time before you figure out what’s really going on.

No need to fret…This is a good sign God is with you!

When the enemy understands God is about to elevate you and take you places, the fight is on. Rest assured something big is about to happen in your life. The fact that he’s fighting you is a good indicator God is getting ready to raise you up and that makes him angry. A sovereign God is about to make your enemies your foot stool. Keep a sweet spirit, keep smiling, and keep doing what you do. Keep clean hands, keep a pure heart and keep moving. When you can take a licking and keep on ticking God will bless your life with favor.

Nothing happens by accident. God is a strategist and He has a plan for you.

God does not give you a mark of distinction by giving you a title. He does it by giving you power, anointing and authority. The anointing that rests on your life not only sets you apart, it means God did it. There is a reason you need to hear this month’s partners’ message, Fruitful in a Painful Place. God knows what doors He is about to open and what connections you are about to make in 2015. He is trying to set you up for the supernatural and He wants you to expect it and anticipate it. He wants you to know if He doesn’t get you out, He’s going to bless you while you’re in.

Trust Him when you can’t Trace Him…

Joseph didn’t know what God was going to do for him in His places of pain, because God was silent. God didn’t intervene, or speak on Joseph’s behalf. He was quiet in the midst of Joseph’s trouble, but Joseph waited on the Lord. He waited until he could see what God said! I guess that’s why I love his story so much. The lineage and the heritage of Joseph will strengthen, encourage, enlighten and ignite the faith of anyone who has ever found themselves in a conflicted place. If what you’re looking at does not look like what God promised, stand, worship, wait, pray, press, be faithful and trust God knowing you are about to be fruitful in a painful place!!!

I pray that God empowers you with supernatural strength, unbelievable favor, with an abundance of blessings that will rest on you and yours all year through.

I’m so blessed and grateful to know that you continue to stand with me in prayer month after month. May God perpetually shower His blessings upon you!

– Pastor Brady

PS. You can get this resource in it’s entirety as an MP3 download HERE…I know it will be a blessing to you!

You Are Fit for the Fight

Life happens to us all…

Out of nowhere circumstances arise that will either set you back, or simply shift everything in your life. You did not see it coming so you feel totally unprepared. It could be anything from an unfavorable doctor’s report during a routine annual check-up, or termination of employment after years of commendations and faithful service. While you would like to discover a deep complex reason, more often than not it’s just life, and life happens to us all.

Whether it’s in your health, your family, or in your finances, at some point we will all go through storms. Storms that make you want to condemn yourself, or blame the devil. Storms so severe, that you want to hide from the embarrassment of loss. You’re left feeling that you are the only one caught in the cyclone of setbacks.

Most believers have become especially adept at putting on a spiritual face to cover up what we perceive as failures or vulnerabilities. Please allow me to fill you in on something; it is not uncommon to love the Lord and still deal with depression, disappointment, and defeat.

1 Corinthians 10:13 tells us no temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man

Usually you see this scripture and immediately think of sin, lust, or moral failure. However, there are many other temptations in life. What about the temptation to quit; get even and seek revenge; harbor bitterness; or the temptation to believe that doctor’s report and not even try. You didn’t pick the test. It came in and took over. As if that isn’t enough, while you are navigating through these land mines of life, someone is sitting on the sidelines judging you. Often times, coming to the conclusion that obviously you’ve failed God somewhere to get into the situation you are in. You begin to wonder, “Maybe they’re right.”

Before you fall into despair, remember 1 Corinthians 10:13 also says, …but God is faithful.

He knows your frame and He knows just how much you can bear. And just when you feel you can’t face another day, He graciously extends a supernatural strength to withstand and overcome the obstacles and opposition life may bring.

I can’t tell you how many times I just kept moving because God was faithful, even when I wasn’t. When I failed, when I disappointed Him, when I messed up, He still loved me. He loved me in my unfaithfulness and in my disobedience. Believe me when I tell you everything has the potential to fail you, but God. He is the same yesterday, today, and forevermore and His Word will come to pass.

Remember You are fit for the Fight! Don’t fret and don’t give in, God has already equipped you with everything you need to win.

For more information on this resource visit the online store at http://shop.sherylbradyministries.com/product.aspx?id=515

Don’t Give Up!

I am sitting on the edge of my seat with an expectation of the greater days ahead. I want to encourage you to know that God has something better in store for you too, if you faint not! Don’t allow yourself to give into weariness while on your assignment because your victory is attached to your perseverance. Galatians 6:9 says, Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. In due season, the promises with your name on it will manifest!

We all face times in our lives that’ll leave us so broken and wounded we think we can’t go on. There are circumstances that can leave you so hurt you don’t even want to believe again for fear of experiencing the same pain. Yet you still try to move forward, try to keep hoping, but it seems to be a lost cause. You’ve run out of resources and you’ve run out of strength. Even if you have a support system, you can reach a point of wondering if you can ever trust again, or dream again. Not to mention the fact there are always enemies trying to keep you down by mocking you, taunting you, which may cause you to doubt your value and abilities.

Have you ever reached a place where you are so tired you just don’t want to try anymore? That’s the kind of tired that even sleep doesn’t fix. It occurs when you’ve suffered so much loss you have no fight left and you are at the point of saying, “I’m just tired now.”

I am reminded of the story of Nehemiah and his determination to rebuild the Temple and the city of Jerusalem. The Babylonians had laid siege to the city and reduced it to rubble. Seventy years later the Babylonian empire fell and freed the people who had been enslaved. However, they were freed without resources. They were freed, but with low self-esteem. Freed, but with no strength. Freed to hear sarcasm and ridicule that their goals would never be reached. Sound familiar?

You probably know the story. But the twist to this story is that Nehemiah, whose name means comforter, found favor with the king. He obtained permission to rebuild, received papers for safe passage throughout the kingdom, and provision to accomplish the arduous task at hand. Was it an easy task? No. Was their mission accomplished? Absolutely! You see, in spite of everything, they were still the children of God, and God never forgets His own.

Don’t be deceived. When God gives you permission to succeed, it doesn’t matter how long, or how hard you work. It doesn’t matter what the situation looks like, or how it feels. God will send you help. Just because you have to fight for whatever it is, doesn’t mean you don’t have permission for possession. You have to be persistent and persistence pays off.

Nehemiah’s persistence is remarkable — how he pulled courage out of the people; his wisdom to pause and pray; why his countenance was a critical factor in what became a divine opportunity.

Always remember that whenever you begin to make progress the enemy sends words to deter what you’re doing, or cause you to abort your assignment altogether. You must be able to challenge the voices that are trying to shut you down and fortify yourself. Through it all God is able to revive you even when others have pronounced you dead. If He has ever done that for you, you already know you’ve been Revived for a Reason.

It’s only a threat

I hate bullies! I can’t stand to see someone who seemingly has the upper hand take an unfair advantage of someone else.  They make threats and cause havoc all because they think they can.  I’ve noticed that, most of the time, a bully is all talk.  They will make you think they are going to do something to you but it turns out they were just trying to scare you into believing they are more important than they really were.

If anyone can give us insight into the adverse effects of giving in to a bully’s threats it would be Elijah.  In 1 Kings 19 you’ll discover a man who has just been used by God to utterly destroy over 400 prophets of Baal.  He was an ordinary man who did extraordinary things.  But after this great victory he was suddenly caught in the grips of a paralyzing fear because of threats on his life by Jezebel.  Always remember that the enemy won’t bother with anyone who is not doing something great for God.

Have you ever felt life’s subtle and not so subtle threats?  You’re just coasting along and life suddenly sucker punches you so hard that you can’t seem to catch your breath.   Maybe it’s a devastating diagnosis or receiving the news that your marriage is ending.  It could be the report that says your child is failing in school.  Whatever it is, I’m telling you it’s just a threat.

Elijah ran for his life after hearing what the queen threatened to do to him. God had a plan for his life but he chose to believe the words of someone who had no real power. Sound familiar? Our enemy gets in our ear and tells us we won’t recover from the illness or get the promotion or lose the weight.  We have to make up our minds to believe God’s word and not the enemy.  Worry and doubt won’t change a thing but Faith will.

When you are feeling the pressure of life’s threats just remember that Jesus came that we might have life and to have it more abundantly (John 10:10).  If the diagnosis comes back negatively, believe God to be a healer.  If your marriage is falling apart, believe God to be a restorer and a sustainer. And, if your child is failing in school, hire a tutor :) Have Life!

I hope this encourages you today.  If you know someone who could benefit from reading it, please share it with them.  If you’d like this entire teaching for your library, visit www.sherylbrady.com/havelife for more information. You’ll find a wealth of resources including ministry videos and mentorship moments on this very subject.  Thank you for being such a vital part of this ministry.  Your prayers, love and support have kept this ministry going for over 30 years.  I’m grateful for that!

Having Life,

Sheryl Brady