Subscription Lists

Refreshment in Refuge

    by Gina Burgess

August 31, 2014

“Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive” (Scott, 1808).

Frankly, we are all guilty. (James 2:10 For whoever shall keep the whole law, and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all.) The question remains though: Should public officials, pastors, and ministerial staff be held to a higher standard? Is there any lie that is okay for any of these guys to tell?

Let’s take a look at a few examples…

Corrie Ten Boom tells of a family who were hiding Jews from the Nazis. The grandmother of the household was so nervous…  ( Click for more )

I always know when the music swells and the snow starts falling the movie is over, and the couple, entwined in each other’s arms will live happily ever after. However, for the two hours (or hour and a half depending on commercials) before this special moment the couple have waged a battle of the sexes or have montage-d through a breathy song or two to fall in love. They look deeply into each other’s eyes and suddenly realize that life is unbearable if the other is not around. They seem to know this because we need another montage and breathy song to tell us they…  ( Click for more )

My daughter wailed, "I wish God would quit strengthening me. I'm so tired of all these trails and tribulations!" That was several years ago. She has since matured greatly in the Lord. I am amazed at how much in such a short space of time.

Then someone asked me to send them "that thing from that Baptist church where that shooting took place." It took a minute for me to remember what "that thing" was... and where it was. When I found it, I read it again and tears just poured down my cheeks. It was then that I realized there are many, many blessings…  ( Click for more )

August 10, 2014

You know you rock along really well for a long time not doing anything stupid. You don't get all puffed up about it, but you feel really responsible because you haven't locked your keys in the car in years, you haven't locked yourself out of the house in months, and you haven't spilled your dinner on your shirt in days.

Then you do something really stupid like wash your cell phone... in the washing machine... with bleach.

I never took out the insurance on my phone because I've had one for years and years and I've never dropped it in the sink, or on concrete, or in the…  ( Click for more )

(An excerpt from my new workbook that is a companion to my book "Refreshment in Refuge")

Our battles begin and end in the mind… Freedom of will is the same as freedom of choice. We choose who we love, where we live, what we eat, how we react to our trials and tribulations. We choose not us suffer consequences so we obey our parents. We choose to believe God exists and believe His Word, or we can choose not to believe. As in the passage from Joshua, "Choose you this day whom you will sever, as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD." …  ( Click for more )

How can it possibly be all right for any person to sin and then to blame someone else for the sin?

How can it possibly be all right for any person to sin against another person causing havoc, chaos, hurt, and heartbreak?

It is not. It never will be all right.

God never said it was all right. This is precisely why He sent His Son to die on the cross. It was to reconcile Him to us, His creation. No sin can enter into His presence. We have to be covered by the blood of Christ so that the sin is atoned and we are reconciled.

That does not make sin all right.…  ( Click for more )

July 13, 2014

I remember when gasoline was 35 cents a gallon during a price war in the late 1960s. (Yes, I know that dates me! Although, I am not as old as dirt.) That was long before Esso had to change its name to Exxon. I can still hear my dad say, “Fill’er up.” We’d get the full treatment. It was why they were called service stations rather than gas stations. My dad worked at one of those while he went to A&E school—Airplane and Engine mechanic school. He was very familiar with Christian service.

Service is much more than checking the oil level…  ( Click for more )

Isaiah 58 hold dear words of promise: If you take away the yoke from your midst, the pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness, if you extend your soul to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted soul, then your light shall dawn in the darkness, and your gloom shall be as the noon day. The LORD will guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought, and strengthen your bones; You shall be like a watered garden, and like a spring of water, whose waters do not fail. Those from among you shall build the old waste places; you shall raise up the foundations of many…  ( Click for more )

June 29, 2014

I wrote a column 7 Crowns of the Believers, which became one of the most viewed articles on my own website. I'm not sure why so many people have been curious about the crowns. I noticed on Amazon there are not that many books about the believers' crowns, so I did a lot more research on the subject. I was astounded at what I found. I wrote a book which will be published soon (and I do hope you'll consider buying it!). There are more than seven crowns. I am sharing an excerpt from my book with you today...

Crown of Insolence

Chapter Six

No discussion of crowns is…  ( Click for more )

There are about as many interpretations of the End Times as there are Christians in the world.

To me, it seems like people decide to pick and choose scriptures that only pertain to their own view rather than encompassing the entire Bible (including the old Testament as well as the New Testament). The trouble with incorporating the Old with the New is that the OT prophets would prophesy near happenings and far off happenings almost in the same breath. The only way to tell the difference is to know ancient history really well, or know and trust the work of some archeologists. Even…  ( Click for more )

Have you ever wondered why Moses asked God, "What name shall I give the Israelites when they ask?" Perhaps it is simply that names connotated character or aspects of a person. " And God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM." And He said, "Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you.' " Exodus 3:14 YHWH -- self sufficient, I AM, no beginning, no end, eternal, infinite, forever. LORD God. A lesson that not only the Israelites and Egyptians needed to hear. Several places we find YHWH written before the word 'ĕlôhı̂ym…  ( Click for more )

June 1, 2014

I'm cheating a bit here today. I've lifted the ending of this column from my blog from last month. However, in studying this week's Sunday school lesson (we are studying Ezekiel), I noticed something spectacular. I hate flashbacks, but I must back up two weeks to give you the whole picture. I am expounding my study on the Crowns of the Believers to put it in book form. In my study I ran across an online discussion of Bible archeology where the Believers were in stark contrast to the Human Reasonist camp. The general consensus of that camp is that we should not necessarily believe…  ( Click for more )

May 25, 2014

So often Jesus’ lineage is studied with great emphasis given to the long line of men listed in the begats. There are only four women listed: Rahab, Tamar, Ruth, and Bathsheba. In this list are a Canaanite harlot from Jericho, a Canaanite woman, a Moabite, and an adulteress.

I have to wonder why these women were singled out to be mentioned. What could possibly be so different about them that they needed mentioning when not even Sarah was mentioned or Isaac’s wife, Rebecca? I do not think it is solely because of their sin. Although, I do believe that God has reminded…  ( Click for more )

Could we take a minute here and look at the Lampstand at Ephesus?

The New English Bible translation says in Revelation 1:20 "Here is the secret meaning of the seven stars which you saw in my right hand, and of the seven lamps of gold: the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches and the seven lamps are the seven churches."

Then Revelation 2:5 says: "But I have this against you: you have lost your early love. Think from what a height you have fallen; repent, and do as you once did. Otherwise, if you do not repent, I shall come to you and…  ( Click for more )

Could we take a minute here and look at the Lampstand at Ephesus?

The New English Bible translation says in Revelation 1:20 "Here is the secret meaning of the seven stars which you saw in my right hand, and of the seven lamps of gold: the seven stars are the angels of the seven churches and the seven lamps are the seven churches."

Then Revelation 2:5 says: "But I have this against you: you have lost your early love. Think from what a height you have fallen; repent, and do as you once did. Otherwise, if you do not repent, I shall come to you and remove…  ( Click for more )

Dear readers, But I do ask for your prayers. When a family as close as ours ages, there is a trend that starts to sap your strength. My aunts and uncles are going to see Jesus on a very regular basis. Earlier this month it was my Aunt Alease whom I adored. She was my dad's sister. Soon my Aunt Vonny, my mom's sister, will join her. We're traveling this week to Oklahoma so Mom and I can see Vonny most likely for the last time this side of Heaven. So I ask for prayers for traveling grace. And I know this is stupid, but my kitty cat needs medicine everyday so we'll have to take him to…  ( Click for more )

April 27, 2014

The Spring breeze was cool and crisp. The sky was crystal clear, and all was right with the world on sheep shearing day, a festival to rival the king’s. Even when the rest of Judah was mourning the death of Samuel, Nabal had a feast spread full of plenty of food and alcohol. Nabal, means foolish or wicked. Why would a parent name his child Foolish? He was certainly foolish with wine that day when David sent his young men to ask for provisions for their winter’s labor protecting Nabal’s huge flocks. The normal, manageable flock was 25, but Nabal’s…  ( Click for more )

Have you ever wondered why Moses asked God, "What name shall I give the Israelites when they ask?" Perhaps it is simply that names connoted character or aspects of a person. " And God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM." And He said, "Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you.' " Exodus 3:14 YHWH -- self sufficient, I AM, no beginning, no end, eternal, infinite, forever. LORD God. Several places we find YHWH written before the word 'ĕlôhı̂ym which is translated God, but is actually the…  ( Click for more )

April 6, 2014

The sun is warm on my face and it feels good to these old bones of mine. I listen, but the house is still. It is only me and Hara now. The children have homes and children of their own and my sweet husband has gone to rest in Abraham’s bosom. That other is gone, too, God bless her. Why Hara stays and takes care of this old woman, I do not know. God’s blessing, for sure, but why a young woman would care for an old woman when she should be caring for a husband is beyond the reach of my mind.

“Enjoying the sun, my dear ‘Em? Here is something…  ( Click for more )

March 30, 2014

What Hannah did to bring Israel one of the most influential prophets of Israel, and the man who anointed Israel’s first two kings, has several great lessons. We women of today, and men as well, do well to pay attention to these lessons of commitment and fortitude.

Walk with me, if you will, though 1 Samuel 1 for a glimpse at what makes women tick.

There was a man...named Elkanah...and he had two wives…

Of course polygamy/bigamy is forbidden in the U.S. and in most places around the world it isn’t…  ( Click for more )

March 23, 2014

(I'm inserting this sidenote in the middle of this series because it has great bearing on why some women acted they way they did, and it marks a stark difference between the godly woman and the Jezebel of the church.)

The first thing to understand is that men and women were created equal. Both were created in the image of God (Genesis 1:26-27) In His image He created them, both male and female He created them. Man was not given dominion over woman as in the dominion given to both over the earth and all creation in the earth. (Genesis 1:26,28-30) Woman was created for Man…  ( Click for more )

March 16, 2014

In Luke chapter 2, a woman by the name of Anna is a prophetess. She continued to speak/declare (laleo) to those who were searching for the Messiah. Laleo means to declare one's mind and disclose thoughts.

God considered Anna the perfect person to teach about His Son in the Temple. Yes, I know. The actual word for Teacher isn't there. However, consider what that word didasko (which is there) actually means.

a) to hold discourse with others in order to instruct them. b) intended to convey instruction and information as well as pleasure and entertainment; c) making…  ( Click for more )

March 9, 2014

God chose her as a judge. God gave Deborah authority. Not just general authority, but Spiritual authority. Her being a Judge was not Israel's doing nor was it the act of any human to raise her up as a judge. God did it and the reason we know it was God's doing is because there was peace in the land for 40 years while she was judge. Why? Because she led the people in the right ways of God. God's righteousness and not to the left or to the right but in the straight path of the Lord. Judges 2:18 And when Jehovah raised up judges to them, then Jehovah was with the…  ( Click for more )

The pendulum has swung so far back the other way since I was a teenager. When I grew up the feminism movement was taking its first breath to scream for equality and justice for women. Back then men were not made fun of or scorned publically. The man actually wore the pants in the family. Daddy was someone you squealed and ran toward because you were so happy he was home from work.

One day I was washing my face with Ivory soap, and that smell sometimes made me recall a commercial. Maybe you remember it? This young man and young woman are walking along in the spring time. It…  ( Click for more )

February 23, 2014

Several years ago I wrote a column called Weightlifting or Carrying Baggage. The main question is first: How do we look more like the Father? The second question is: How can we be blameless?

One thing to remember is that being blameless in God's eyes is not at all the same as being sinless. We are blameless because Jesus stepped in to take the wrath of God onto Himself rather than us having to endure it all because we believe God, believe in His Son, and understand that we are sinners in desparate need of God's grace.

Let's look at one passage which is indicative of how…  ( Click for more )

Got Something to Share?
LiveAsIf.org is always looking for new writers. Whether it is a daily devotional or a weekly article, if you desire to encourage others to know Him better, then signup to become a contributor.