Living Light

Stirring The Deep


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Being a Delight to God

Being a Delight to God

We desire to be a delight, thus give great joy, to those we love .. how are we a delight to our heavenly Father?

The Creator of all, the heavenly Father, possesses all things, so what do we give Him? Delight. How? By walking according to the wisdom He gives us (not the wisdom of the world), and letting Him establish our steps by that wisdom. Micah 6:8

When we seek, listen and obey our heavenly Father’s wisdom in our lives, it creates a life of joy, peace, happiness, rest, blessing, and love. When we are abiding in this state it greatly delights God. His delight is seeing us in pure delight. Proverbs 16:20, Matthew 6:33 His Spirit manifests the perfect loving Father to us in every way.

My step-daughter moved in at the beginning of the year. Since she has been here, she has been absorbing and walking by the truths we’ve taught her about how to live; all in accordance with true wisdom from above. James 3:13-18 The results of her heeding our words have already started to bear beautiful fruit in her life. The exceedingly great joy for me and my husband is to see her abiding and growing in joy and true happiness that flows from those truths. Could parents desire anything more than for a soul, who is brought under their wings, to be listening and following the wisdom of true life and abiding in the abundant good fruit it produces? For this is to abide in the presence of God.

Numbers 14:8 “If the Lord delights in us, then He will bring us into this land and give it to us, ‘a land which flows with milk and honey.’

In a similar manner, the heavenly Father experiences delight in us. The wisdom He calls us to seek and abide in creates a life of satisfaction, peace, meaning, and love. Thus, when we follow this wisdom, it not only honors Him as our Father whom we obey, but our obedience shows we trust and love Him. John 15:10, John 14:15, 1 John 5:3 When our lives are a reality of delights of a pure heart, that gives Him great joy. The result is praise He desires, not contrived or forced, and the worship (loving and honoring Him) He desires, in spirit and truth.

God desires us to be in the fullness of joy, which we do by following His commandments/wisdom of pure love. Matthew 25:23, John 15:11

Proverbs 11:20 Those who are of a perverse heart are an abomination to the Lord, But the blameless in their ways are His delight.

To manifest this joy in our lives, the heavenly Father allows our situations to correct us when we are straying off the path of righteousness. Walking counter to the truth, which establishes love, creates pain and suffering. The pain and suffering are there to “tell” us to stop doing whatever is causing the pain (this can take deep reflection, seeking, and listening as the lies are many and layered) and seek His wisdom so we can experience peace and joy, thus experience Him in our lives.

Proverbs 3:12 For whom the Lord loves He corrects, Just as a father the son in whom he delights.

Jeremiah 9:24 But let him who glories glory in this, That he understands and knows Me, That I am the Lord, exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth. For in these I delight,” says the Lord.

We are to diligently seek the heavenly Father’s wisdom, which is the understanding of how to love Him, ourselves and others. Proverbs 3:15-16, 4:6, 16:16  This wisdom to be the guide to all our thoughts. 2 Corinthians 10:5 It entails thinking and acting in honor, mercy, justice, trustworthiness, honesty, grace, humility, peace, and loving kindness.

We seek understanding to the nature of these characteristics, but how they play out in each moment, we trust God to direct. We don’t rely on our understanding for the moment because we are not all knowing, but we trust His prompting in the moment that applies His wisdom to our situations. It isn’t about gaining wisdom, then running our lives. It’s about gaining understanding of the spirit of God, wisdom, and letting Him govern our lives by that wisdom.  Jeremiah 10:23, Proverbs 3:5-6

Psalm 147:10-11 He does not delight in the strength of the horse; He takes no pleasure in the legs of a man. The Lord takes pleasure in those who fear Him, In those who hope in His mercy.

This humbling of ourselves to our heavenly Father’s will is letting Him establish our righteousness and be our righteousness. This is also what it means to “accept Christ into our heart”. It means to let the word of God, Christ, govern our heart (the seat of our desires) in every way. It’s to move out of lies and deceit (mankind’s wisdom governing our heart) and let His truth establish our present reality as He wills. Thus we cultivate a very personal and intimate engagement with our God inside out.

Righteousness, love, and holiness are views of God from three different angles.

In righteousness all actions are done correctly. Love is what walking in righteousness looks like. When you walk in righteousness, you create an environment that is extremely loving to all. Righteousness, which creates love, makes the environment  holy because where true love is that is where God is because He is love.

Seek to be one in whom God delights.


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Holiness Leads to Happiness

Holiness Leads to Happiness

Do you believe this truth; holiness leads to happiness?

My life testifies to this truth; though when I look around it’s dismissed by a multitude of lies, as it once was in my life. The main one being you can’t be truly holy AND happy because the path of holiness leads to continual sacrifice, thus suffering and lack. This is the world’s lie, when in reality the opposite is true; holiness leads to happiness. This lie keeps us from seeking it, thus truly seeking to walk in oneness with God and His perfect wisdom that makes our lives a continual feast. Psalm 138:8, Proverbs 15:15  To understand this dynamic of holiness and happiness is a part of knowing the true God.

Purging False Images

To understand this truth and for it to become real in our life, we first have to set aside all images of holiness; cathedrals, nuns, convents, contrived humility/meekness, anything eternal. Mark 7:7-8, 15 Holiness doesn’t come from the external, but internal. It’s of the heart, thus to know it ALL images related to it have to be purged. When we willing offer this clean slate to God; then the deep instruction of God begins. He destroys the lies and replaces them with truth.

What is Holiness?

Holiness =  feeling, thinking and doing what is the most loving and honoring (2 sides of same coin) for ourselves, others and God.

Holiness is the result of an inner transformation of the soul affecting our heart, spirit, and mind. It’s the interworking and result of purity, truth and love that come from being a part of God and obeying God’s truth. We become holy as we obey God’s instruction within our soul; for that is where God communes with us. When we obey we love. We obey when we love God. We obey because God’s ways are love. As we obey we become united to God. Then, holiness shines in us and lights the space around us.

If you continuously abide in pure love for yourself, others and God, what do you suppose the state of your soul will be?

Yes. Happiness.

Brings Abundant Life

Walking in God’s truth, which is obeying His counsel within our soul, is walking in true wisdom. When we act in wisdom, our life is recreated inside and out. Wisdom transforms not only us, but the space around us. It creates a life of inner and outer growing peace, purpose, rest, purity, healing … truly all things that bring abundant happiness and everlasting joy. Christ spirit in us is our wisdom. 1 Corin 1:30, 2 Peter 1:4 His Spirit within us counsels and instructs us in all wisdom, which is the most loving and honoring decision that results in holiness.

Becoming a Vessel of Honor

Once we truly start seeking God, our sin is used for refinement. The consequences of the sin (as an illness, hardship, angst, unrest, stress, etc) present a sign that we are going against God’s will, which we don’t desire for it leads to all those things we don’t want. If we are of God, we desire to abide in love and not have any sin abiding in us. We want purged all that is contrary to God, so we can dwell in perfect unity with Him.  2 Peter 3:11, 13-14 We need wisdom’s rebukes in our spirit so we can walk in the way of righteousness. Proverbs 1:23 As we grow in obedience, which is growing in love; the result is holiness. If we take away honor or love, then we take away holiness and joy.

Happy is he who trusts in God. When we trust we obey. If we trust external things to bring us honor/value/love, we’ll block holiness thus happiness.

Psalm 146:5 Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help, Whose hope is in the LORD his God,

Ask God to build this truth in your life. This transformation within your soul is now possible as Christ is making His home in the souls prepared for Him. Rev 3:8, John 10:9 His spirit in us compels, enables, and empowers us to walk in the purest of love. Without His spirit, we can do nothing. With it nothing is impossible. His spirit is the morning star that is now rising in our souls. As we go through this transition, we are becoming a part of God’s house built without hands for Him to dwell in forever. Ephesians 2:20-21

Psalm 144:15 Happy are the people who are in such a state; Happy are the people whose God is the LORD!


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Path to True Happiness

Path to True Happiness

  HAPPY Thanksgiving … I pray it truly is happy.

 “And whoever trusts in the Lord, happy is he.”

Proverbs 16:20

How many genuinely happy faces do you see? Lives speaking of rest, peace, joy and blessing? Souls abiding in love, truth and right-mindedness?

There are two different paths we can travel in this life. These two paths manifest two different spirits within us. One of these paths leads to happiness, the other empty hopes. Whichever path we give our minds to determines the type of spirit we are.

One path, taken by many, is directed by this world’s wisdom and ways, and manifests a spirit of corruption within. This life is preached to us in every dimension. You can’t escape its messaging that penetrates the airwaves. When we trust and live by this wisdom, which we all start out doing, a spirit of corruption is fed and grows within us. James 3:15 This spirit manifests a life of sorrows.

The other path, traveled by few, is directed by God and true wisdom and manifests the spirit of God within. James 3:17-18 This life is taught to us by Christ. Matthew 11:29 Its instruction doesn’t come from the society and culture around us, but from the Holy Spirit. 1 John 2:27 When we learn of this wisdom, the spirit of God makes its home within us. John 14:23

These two spirits create different outcomes. The spirit of corruption is of fear and produces suffering, pain, anger, depression, afflictions and angst. When you give your mind to the messaging of the world, this spirit reigns in you. The spirit of God is of love and produces health, rest, joy, blessing, compassion, and peace, which you see very little of because very few truly seek instruction from the Holy Spirit, the source of truth.

The Creator of this world desires for you to live in a reality of truth, wisdom, love, rest, and peace, and yes happiness …to walk the less traveled path. Matt 7:13-14 Yet most don’t believe that God truly is this good or this powerful in their lives, therefore most don’t look to Him to manifest this life in their lives. Their unbelief keeps them from seeking God, because why bother? What difference would it really make?  For a lack of seeking, they remain bound to lies and on the path of destructive mindsets, generated by worldly wisdom, leading to sorrow.

God’s power is real, yet it has become futile to people. God’s power and promises have been contrived to empty shells of hypocrisy. People declare the peace of God, when there their soul is full of angst. They declare the love of God, when anger reigns in their souls. They declare the righteousness of God, when sin is ruling their spirit. These souls are still bounded by the spirit of corruption. They haven’t walked or failed to continue walking on the path leading to God’s spirit indwelling their soul.

2 Timothy 3:5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!

The fruit of our lives reveals the spirit within us. When we get honest with our spiritual state and stop calling it what it isn’t, then we are open to seek truth.

If you are 30 lbs overweight but tell yourself you’re not. What will you do? Nothing. If you think you are what you aren’t you are deceiving yourself and thus hurting yourself. If you are honest with your situation, then you can start to do something about it. As long as we think God’s power and promises aren’t really real and life is lacking this side of heaven, then we won’t seek. This self-deception is one of the greatest forms of bondage.

When we seek to be taught about life from the Holy Spirit and put our trust in what He teaches, He prepares our souls to receive God’s Spirit. Once we truly start seeking, our lives shift to the path of life. As we persist, we are sanctified by truth. John 17:17 Ephesians 1:4-5 As we are refined and purified, the spirit of God begins to fill us. What we experience is becoming a new creation; old things pass away, all things become new. 2 Corinthians 5:17 Many haven’t experience this transformation, because they haven’t walked the path governed by the Holy Spirit. It’s a completely different wisdom and way of life than that of the world. What you feed your mind, you are.

When God’s righteousness dwells within you, you are transformed, you can’t help but be. Not by your own accord, but because the spirit of corruption has been replaced by God’s Spirit. As you don’t effort to sin, you don’t effort to be righteous; truth and love simply flow from the fountain of life within you. When God starts to take up residence in your soul, you know it – EVERYTHING is transformed; your mind, desires, actions, words, heart … truly become new. You experience rest, peace, joy blessing, love, truth, soundness of mind, and yes happiness.

When you understand the reality of this blessed life with God occurs this side of heaven, you will seek and you will find. Matthew 7:7,11 God is powerful. When we trust Him, our lives change in very tangible ways that lead to an abundant life. The power that raised Christ from the dead moves in and through us affecting our lives even to the most specific details. Ephesians 1:19-20

When I pray that you truly will be happy it’s a significant prayer, and one that God desires to fulfill. Don’t be frustrated if you see the spirit of corruption in your life, this is where we all start, and awareness is the first step toward the right path. Get on the path of life and headed in the right direction, and you will find the happiness you seek and all you deeply desire.


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Living in the Kingdom of God NOW

Living in the Kingdom of God

NOW

Beach Walk

The other day as I was walking on the beach, I reflected upon on the bleakness of our times contrasted to the beautiful truth of God’s Kingdom here on earth. I thought about how many people are waiting for heaven when God has given us access to His Kingdom now – something few truly enter into. Most are sitting on the sideline waiting and missing out on an incredible journey now. The reflection took me back to that poignant moment in my walk – the realization of the realness of His Kingdom here on earth and in my life.

The Realness of the Kingdom on Earth

One morning many years ago, my husband came into the kitchen where I was sitting having my quiet time. He said, “Can I interrupt you for a moment?” “Sure!” I said. I’m always ready to hear an insight. He said (paraphrasing) from what he was reading and what the spirit was teaching the Kingdom of God in our lives is just as real as this physical life. Therefore, dwelling it affects our earthly lives now in very powerful and real ways. We are called to a different existence now. His words confirmed what I had been learning. Often God teaches us individually similar truths at similar times – it never ceases to amaze us.

We dived into an extraordinary conversation about the Kingdom. We volleyed back and forth on what God was showing us. Our study, our circumstances, and our conversation were uncovering this mind altering truth. God was unveiling the mystery of His Kingdom. That day catapulted our lives in a new direction. The Kingdom of God became real like the sand that runs through your fingers and the surf that dashes across your feet. We discern it differently than the physical world but its affect on us is more potent than what we see. The impact in our lives from dwelling in God’s Kingdom affects our health, family, marriage, work, everything. It isn’t pie in the sky; it’s pie you eat. We were transitioning from hearing the truth of the Kingdom to it becoming our home. It’s like hearing about a country verses traveling there.

What is the Kingdom of God?

The Kingdom of God is within us. It is God’s Spirit within us. It is Him conquering the territory of our soul and moving in as King and us stepping aside. It is us being reconciled back to God through Christ’s sacrifice and dwelling in the presence of God and all that He is. In His presence, His Kingdom, I’ve experienced in substantive ways His love, mercy, truth, joy, peace, rest, comfort, deliverance, healing, power, strength, protection, provision, purity, goodness, purpose, beauty, wisdom, counsel, freedom, instruction, perfection, and sovereignty – all far beyond what the world offers. And when those things fill your life your life changes dramatically. Meditating on what He has given me in each one of these is something I often do. As we seek God’s face with our heart and soul in the truth of His Word, then these treasures become apart of our lives. It’s tremendous as I’m discovering.

The Focus of Jesus’ Teaching

Luke 4:43 but He said to them, “I must preach the kingdom of God to the other cities also, because for this purpose I have been sent
.”

The Kingdom is the focus of Jesus’ teaching. It is the reason He came to earth. It is the place He opened to us with His eternal sacrifice, as His gift of righteousness opened the door. We need His righteousness because we have none and we only enter this Kingdom if we are spotless. The travesty is many are spiritually born and given this gift, but are stuck in the birth canal. If we neglect to enter in, learn, seek, and explore this new place then we abandon what Jesus brought us, abundant life. For God is life. It’s something we seek with our spiritual eyes, because it isn’t discerned with our physical eyes, but its power in our lives that dominates everything we do see.

The world functions by its wisdom and we, the children of God, by God’s. Just as we are born into the physical world, we are born into this spiritual one. For those who aren’t born into the spiritual, their lives function and are limited by the rules of the physical world. For us who have been spiritually born, we have a new set of rules that govern our lives as we live according to God’s wisdom. How we succeed, fulfill our dreams, define our purpose, make decisions, and obtain wisdom; and what brings joy, pleasure, and happiness are some of the areas where we learn and enjoy a new way of living.

The Journey into the Kingdom

Coming to understand how to live in our new life takes time. Just as we grow physically learning to function in the earthly realm, we grow spiritually. In order to do both we eat. In one we consume food, in the other the Truth, the Word. If we don’t nourish our spirits we won’t mature and will continue to live as we always have, outside His promises. How many mal-nourished Christians do you see? How many do you see feasting on the pure Word, and not man’s watered-down interpretation? If we ate more of His pure truth we would grow and live as we are called in His presence and not as mere men. 1 Corinthians 3:3 Why don’t you see the affects of the Kingdom in people’s lives? Because they aren’t eating or aren’t eating and digesting the pure Word of God.

For us to know and live in the Kingdom was and still is Christ’s passion. We don’t have to wait until heaven to experience a life with God that far exceeds what the world offers. Our response to Jesus’ gift of His life that allows us entrance into this world is seeking understanding and belief in all the promises of our new home. If we don’t take the time to discover its treasures, we never leave the airport. We stay just outside a world that would transform our lives. We remain in the wasteland of endless striving and insatiable hungers. Jesus came to give us life, life in His Kingdom. In it we find the abundant life He came to give. As His bride, it is our part to enter in and explore and we do by stirring the deep.

Verses to ponder about the treasures of God’s kingdom:

1. Blessing

Proverbs 10:22, Psalm 84:11, Psalm 115: 12-15

2. Provision

Psalm 81:10, 16, Philippians 4:19, Matthew 6:25-33

3. Healing

Matthew 10:7-8, 2 Kings 20:5b, Psalm 30:2, James 5:15-16

4. Peace with God

Philippians 4:7 , John 14:27, John 16:33, Ephesians 2:14

5. Happiness/Joy

Psalm 144:15 , Proverbs 16:20, Proverbs 3:13, Job 5:17

6. Rest

Psalm 116:7, Psalm 55:2,2 Matthew 11:28, Philippians 4:11-13

7. Protection/Safety

Psalm 50:15, Psalm 4:8, Psalm 91:9-11, Psalm 71:3

8. Freedom

John 8:32,36, 1 Corinthians 6:12, Psalm 119:45, 2 Corinthians 3:17

9. Deliverance

Isaiah 40:4, Psalm 34:17, Psalm 32:10 , Proverbs 13:15

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Obedience is Freedom

Obedience is Freedom

Freedom

 

There are many paradoxes when we dive into the realm of understanding the spiritual dynamics of life. Here is another one.

The other day at the beach there were two dogs reminding me of a valuable lesson in life; obedience is freedom.

The first one was playing catch with his owner running into the cool ocean waves and retrieving his favorite ball. Highly trained, he obeyed each command his owner gave. Running, jumping, leaping, bounding, wagging his tail, and grinning ear to ear, he was having the time of his life.

The second dog was on a short leash. Pulling so there was no give, he drove forward trying to escape the bondage – if only he could run free! He couldn’t understand why he wasn’t free, so he pulled and pulled. However, unbeknown to him, he would never have what he was striving for. He wasn’t in control despite his efforts – his owner was. With his arm about to come out of the socket, the owner pulled back. The dog went one way and he another. Frustration covered the owner’s face, shaded by disappointment. He wanted to let his dog off the leash, but he couldn’t – because he wouldn’t obey his voice. So the battle warred on, the dog pulling in one direction and the owner in the other as they plowed through the sand. No one looked happy about the arrangement. The owner’s eyes revealed his thoughts – if only his dog would listen, what freedom he would have.

In our relationship with God, we can be like either of these two dogs. We have the perfect owner, who is ready to teach and train us so we can live a life of freedom and enjoyment, but we chose either to listen and follow our Lord’s voice or not listen and push forward going nowhere. The first way leads to immense freedom, joy, and living as we desire. The second leads to limitations, frustrations and never obtaining what we long for. Like the dogs, we either run toward our Lord in freedom and delight or away in bondage and frustration.

Obedience brings freedom. Because the first dog listened to his owner and the owner could trust him to listen – he had immense liberties. He could run unleashed, frolic in the ocean, and play with his ball. When the owner called, the dog listened and followed. He was granted freedom because there was a bond of trust. The owner trusted him to listen and he trusted his owner to lead. As a result of his obedience, he lived the life he wanted to and enjoyed an incredible bond with his owner along the way.

But the second dog didn’t listen and chose to go his own way; therefore he didn’t have any true freedom. He thought he was moving closer to having his freedom by all that pulling, but it was leading nowhere. There was no trust on either end. Therefore, there was no deep bond, and the owner and the dog missed out enjoying a rich life together.

The gift and secret of obedience is that it’s really about desire. When you know that God truly wants your best and happiness then you can trust Him and follow where He leads. When the first owner walked down the beach – the dog followed close behind. The dog delighted in following his master because he knew it led to what he wanted – a rich close relationship with his owner, freedom, and enjoyment of life.

In the same way, when we trust God and know He desires our best, we want to follow Him. Our obedience is our desire. From past experiences, we have learned our ways lead to bondage and His ways to freedom. In choosing His way, we experience a close bond with God, freedom and enjoyments in life. On the other hand, if we don’t know and trust Him we won’t follow Him. We will believe we know better and as a result we won’t live in the freedom we could and we won’t have the life we could – the life we truly desire. The second dog has no idea the extent of what he is missing – and it is a great deal.

God is good. He delights in giving us good things and freedoms just like the first owner, who had a huge smile as he watched his dog have the time of his life. The only way to a rich abundant life is following Him and listening to God’s voice. Obedience is freedom.

Which dog are you? Are you enjoying a strong close bond with God playing with Him in the ocean waves, or are you pulling away thinking you know better, missing on a relationship with Him and suffering for it?

Proverbs 16:20 He who heeds the word wisely will find good, And whoever trusts in the LORD, happy is he.

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Our Thoughts Create Our Reality, BUT . . .

Our Thoughts Create Our Reality, BUT . . .

 

There is a great video on the truth, our thoughts create our reality, by Earl Nightingale.

However to be effective in harnessing this power in our lives there is a deeper layer we need to consider – the source of our thoughts. Where do our thoughts come from and how do we decide which thoughts are best? How do we make sure that what we are thinking or focusing on gets us to what we truly desire and what is for our good and the good of others? We often go after what we think is good, but it isn’t. There is a verse from Chris Daughtry’s song, Home, “Be careful what you wish for, ‘Cause you just might get it all” that speaks to this point. How can we be sure the focus of our thoughts will get us where we truly want to be? Often we are blinded to what is truly good for us, to what will truly fulfill. I know I was.

Our thoughts create our reality is the essence of faith. What we believe in and act on (or have faith in) affects of our lives. If it is God’s wisdom then we will experience the fruit of that belief. If it is the wisdom of the world then we will experience its fruit.

Titus 1:15 To the pure all things are pure, but to those who are defiled and unbelieving nothing is pure; but even their mind and conscience are defiled.

In my previous life, I was an avid believer of the power of thought as I am now. However I lived without God’s wisdom, therefore all I thought was grounded in lies, deception, and wisdom of the world. Wisdom that doesn’t bring what we truly desire; wisdom full of empty promises; wisdom that doesn’t fulfill but creates more want; wisdom that leads to bondage. When we use our thoughts for our own selfish reasons, which we do when God isn’t our center, not only does it negatively impact us but also others. This is the life I had created, one of bondage and destruction to me and others.

I focused, visioned, and tried all sorts of “positive” thinking but deep down my soul remained tormented, thus I tormented others. No one lives in a vacuum. I figured I just need to try harder. When God isn’t our center, instead of being for the greater good our thoughts become a power for the sake of gaining our own power. When this happens we throw things off balance. Our faith is in faith for our own interests. And that kind of thinking leads to destruction because it is counter to God’s will which is for the good of everyone. The lie we have to overcome so that we will seek His will and not our own is that God doesn’t desire a good life for us. It is one we all battle, but it is a lie. I’ve learned the truth in my own life. God truly does desire fulfillment, satisfaction and good for us.

Only when I realized that lie and sought God’s will did my life start to change to become what I truly desired and beneficial to others. By abiding in the Bible, God’s words, His truth became the framework from which I started thinking. His words became my thoughts and started to manifest true life.

Sometimes we don’t realize what we want. The world’s wisdom tells us certain things will fulfill us, make us happy, but they don’t. God created us individually and uniquely. When we don’t align our minds to His will then we end up chasing what will never satisfy. Deep down we have desires instilled in us by God. Only God can lead us to the fulfillment of those desires that bring true satisfaction and joy.

Our thoughts create our reality. If we align our thoughts to God’s wisdom then we find what we were always looking for and everyone benefits.

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