How to Resolve Conflicts

Victory’s Battle Cry—A Study in Joshua Part 21-How to Resolve Conflicts

Have you ever misjudged someone? You thought they were your friend and they had been there to help you through the bad times; yet, something happens and suddenly you question their motives. You become frustrated and deep within your mind and heart is this bubbling unrest, fear, anger and a sense of betrayal. Or perhaps the Christian Media has denounced a Christian teacher/preacher that you admired and had studied under. What do you do? Do you join the crowd condemning them?

goodfellas-ronald-barbaArtwork used by written permission of Ronald Barba click on image for more information.

How should we as Christians resolve conflict, particularly within the body of Christ? Too often we do behave much like the mafia when confronting other Christians. Philippians 2:” 3 Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves….14 Do all things without murmurings and disputings:”

As we read on in Joshua 22, there is a message to us on how to resolve conflict among the people of God.

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Steps to Remain Victorious

Victory’s Battle Cry-A Study in Joshua Part 20—Steps to Remain Victorious

As we have read in Joshua, they entered the Promised Land with God’s guidance each step of the way. The people had been very diligent to do all of what God commanded. The men from the Gadites, Reubenites and the half-tribe of Manessah had remained faithful to their promise to stay and fight alongside the remaining tribes until all had been accomplished. Since their inheritance had been on the east of Jordan, this meant they had left behind all their possessions, their children, and their wives to fulfill their obligations as God had commanded. We are not told how many years this was; but, we know that it was years. Now it was time to return to their homes. They had been faithful to God and to His commands. Joshua calls them to tell them that it was now time for them to return to their home land east of the Jordan. When he does he then tells them:

Joshua 22(KJV) “ 5 But take diligent heed to do the commandment and the law, which Moses the servant of the Lord charged you, to love the Lord your God, and to walk in all his ways, and to keep his commandments, and to cleave unto him, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul.”

Why would he tell them this? Hadn’t they shown their devotion all of these years?When are you and I most vulnerable to drifting? It is during the moments of rest and prosperous times that we tend to forget. When we no longer are confronting the heat of the battle, we tend to get complacent.

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photo courtesy of @istockphoto.com

Whatever the season you are in can you say? Psalm 42: “As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God. 2 My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God”

What are the steps Joshua instructs us to take so as to ascertain our continuing victory during the times of rest?

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Mercy Unveiled in Life’s Ebb and Flow

Mercy Unveiled in Life’s Ebb and Flow

By Effie Darlene Barba

 

Torn between the places of my life

Torn between the joy, pain, love and strife

I searched for You in the darkest night

Rejoiced with You in the brightest light

Discovered in You, my Sovereign Lord

Love, hope, joy were my unjust reward

 

If I were to gaze back o’er my life

My failures cut deep like a sharp knife

Filling my heart with guilt-Oh wretched pain

My faith so small would wax and wane

All the times I shunned your acts of love

Putting selfish thoughts of mine above

 

Yet, you have always stood tried and true

Giving me your grace and mercy too

How did you love me with love so great

When I have grumbled such words of hate

Never seeing You were all I need

My callous words caused your heart to bleed

 

I do not wish to stay this course

That causes you so much remorse

Clinging to you through the ebb and flow

Tides of emotions from high to low

  I need you to hold me in your arms

There where I am safe from all life’s harms

 

Let your Glory shine through me I pray

That my life shine forth Your love  today

  Lift me high above these earthly fears

That all might see Your Joy through tears

I desire for nothing more than this

All should know You are their Joy and Bliss

© 2014 Effie Darlene Barba

Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post. I have no material connection to any brands, products or services that I have mentioned. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides regarding the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

The Infallibility of God’s Promises

Victory’s Battle Cry-A Study in Joshua (Part 19)—The Infallibility of God’s Promises

This past weekend with its trip to Orlando, I must say was filled with emotion. As I told you in the last post, it is as though my heart is torn between the cities. How I wish that I could scoop up all my children and move them near to me. How I wish I had the finances and where withal to just make that happen without any worries or concerns. Could I have been more frugal in my past?

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You parents out there, I am certain understand those feelings. You would gladly suffer anything if only you could protect your children from all pain, heartaches and sorrows. Yet, remember this; in our imperfect love we have never loved one of our children nearly as much as God’s love for His only son. He knew our hearts could perhaps understand that illustration to demonstrate the love within the trinity. Then, imagine this; God loved you and me so much that He would endure the pain of watching His Beloved son suffer and die that we might be saved.

Yes, He knew that the suffering would one day increase the joy and Glory of Christ as He gathered the remnant of believers around the throne. It is that truth which should encourage us when we don’t understand the plans before us.

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I Know Not Why God’s Wondrous Grace

I am back in Orlando for a conference this weekend which has been such a blessing to see dear friends and even more wonderful was to spend time with my grandchildren.  When I left for Missouri, I did not expect such a delay in their joining me.  God, I know is Sovereign and knows what is best; despite my heart’s desires longing for different things.  I have not meant to neglect any of you my readers this weekend; but, technical issues as well has time has been a challenge.  I must go back to Columbia today.  My heart is there and a part of my heart remains in Florida.  Another part is off in California with my daughter.  God has His plan and I will trust Him both with my life and that of my children and grandchildren.  It is His grace that has so blessed me with this opportunity to go to Florida.  It was a gift so unexpected and so gracious, as I could not have done this myself financially.   Apart from Christ Himself, my greatest gift of Grace that God bestowed on me were my Children and now, my grandchildren.  I pray that God will lead each and little heart to know Him & find their joy in Him. me with aiden and haley

  So, today let me share with you this song that was published in 1883 by Daniel Whittle.

1. I know not why God’s wondrous grace
To me He hath made known,
Nor why, unworthy, Christ in love
Redeemed me for His own.

o Refrain:
But “I know Whom I have believed,
And am persuaded that He is able
To keep that which I’ve committed
Unto Him against that day.”

2. I know not how this saving faith
To me He did impart,
Nor how believing in His Word
Wrought peace within my heart.

3. I know not how the Spirit moves,
Convincing men of sin,
Revealing Jesus through the Word,
Creating faith in Him.

4. I know not what of good or ill
May be reserved for me,
Of weary ways or golden days,
Before His face I see.

5. I know not when my Lord may come,
At night or noonday fair,
Nor if I walk the vale with Him,
Or meet Him in the air.

Published by Daniel W. Whittle 1883 (copyright listed as public domain)

Or if you wish to hear it sung:  I KNOW NOT WHY

©2014 Effie Darlene Barba

Disclosure of Material Connection: I have not received any compensation for writing this post.  I have no material connection to the brands, products, or services that I have mentioned.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

 

Our Place of Refuge

Victory’s Battle Cry—A Study in Joshua, Part 18-Our Place of Refuge

After all the land was divided amongst the tribes of Israel, God then commands Joshua to establish the six cities of refuge which He had previously commanded in the law given to Moses.  These were cities that people who committed homicide could flee for refuge from “the avenger of blood.”  The penalty for taking another’s life is death; but, in this case if the death of the other was due to involuntary manslaughter instead of premeditated murder, there was a place to go for refuge. 

Joshua 20 (GNV) “ 3 That the slayer that killeth any person [a]by ignorance, and unwittingly, may flee thither, and they shall be your refuge from the avenger of blood.”

Then, you might ask, “What does that have to do with me?”  Ah, that is the question, we must ask; for the scripture is all given for our edification.

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Artwork is used by written permission of Ronald Barba

Am I not guilty of Christ’s blood which was shed in my place?  Did not my sin hang him on that cross?  Indeed, I might try to plead ignorance or attempt to say that I wasn’t there.  Yet, as soon as I hear the truth, I choose either to accept Christ’s atonement for my sin or to reject Him. By choosing Him, I become accepted in Him to enter the “city of refuge”. Denying Him would make me as one who caused Christ’s death with a heart of hatred toward Him.

Romans 8: (KJV) “6 For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.7 Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.” In Christ (our place of refuge) we are no longer in a place of being pursued by the “avenger of blood” and no longer need fear the penalty of death. Additionally, we need to look at the significance of the names of these six cities to recognize the magnitude of what we find in Christ, our refuge.

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JOY In God

This is a reposting of this message and the poem from Saturday night as these were both lost on the website  due to technical errors at the website.  I have learned over the years, that when Satan tries to destroy a message it is one I should press on with. On the other side, God also knows the perfect timing for you to see the message.  I hope it reaches someone who needs it tonight. 

 

Victory’s Battle Cry-A Study through Joshua-Part 17

As we look at the Chapters in Joshua from chapter 13 through chapter 20 we read about the allotments as God instructs Joshua in the division of the land among the 12 tribes of Israel. It can be considered slow reading and at times we might wonder why we should also read these chapters—what could they possibly have to do with us now. Yet, there is no part of the scripture that is not for our profit and edification (Proverbs 30:5, Deuteronomy 8:3). Note that it is God that divides the land. There was to be no squabbling, no jealousy, no pouting because someone else got the better part. You see, no one deserved any part of the gift on their own. Yes, some had a greater portion due to a history of faithfulness like Caleb; yet, Caleb received that inheritance on the other side of Jordan. For all who try to tell you that the faithful have prosperity on this earth; please note the symbolism. In the division of the land, two and one-half tribes received their inheritance this side of Jordan, 8 and one-half tribes received their inheritance the other side of Jordan, and “33unto the tribe of Levi Moses gave not any inheritance: the Lord God of Israel was their inheritance”(Joshua 13).

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photo courtesy of @istockphoto.com

God in His Omnipotent, Omniscient Grace chooses our allotment on this earth and in heaven. If we truly understand the significance of that truth, we would be able to proclaim with Paul, “I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content “(Philippians 4:11) or with Job, “Naked came I out of my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return thither: the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord” (Job 1:21).

Indeed, if we fully understand this truth it would change our heart’s responses to life’s trials and life’s blessings.

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A Legacy of Faith

Victory’s Battle Cry—A Study in the Book of Joshua-Part 16-A Legacy of Faith

As I fully recognize the aching of my bones in the early morning, the fatigue that slows me down, and those aging wrinkles that stare back at me in the mirror; I wonder sometimes how long I will be able to keep up the pace of what I do.  I strain sometimes and at other times condemn myself for “becoming lazy”.  Ok, some of you would say, “You are not that old.”  To, which I could say comparably, true.  Still I wonder if all the battles of this life have left their scars deep within my body.  After all, I should not have survived 5 years with the aggressiveness of the cancer I had back in 1998.  Nor, should I have survived the severity of my ulcerative colitis, total colectomy, and multiple surgeries.  Certainly the pancreatic mass should have taken me home; but that was 12 years ago, and I am still here, working fulltime and taking care of my mother.  A widow for 20 years, faced with the battles against loneliness and financial disaster at times added to that aging process—I am certain.  Oh, I can tell you that back then there were many times that I cherished the idea of going home.  I can remember looking into heaven and saying, “I’m tired.  It’s been a long journey, are you calling me home?”  God’s answer, as you may see was “One day soon, I will take you home; it may not be today though.  Just keep your eyes on me.”

grandpa

Samuel William Robinson (7/19/1895-10/03/1999)

Over these years, I have seen so many of God’s promises come true.  I have watched Him display His Majestic Sovereignty over my life and that of my Children.  During these years, I have learned that He is my joy and my greatest treasure.

Imagine this; it has been during these last 15 years that I wrote the 4 books that are published.  It has been these last 15 years that has led me to meet so many people by whom I have been blessed, to start this blog so as to tell the world about Christ, and to have seen my children find their perfect spouses. I have been so privileged by God to see my beautiful grandbabies.  I must say there is a greater urgency growing within my heart with each passing year to spread the gospel. Perhaps the creaking bones are a reminder that even if I live to be 100, time is short and there is so much to get done.  God called me to be a speaker for Him; and,

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A Call to Remember

Victory’s Battle Cry—A Study in Joshua, Part 15—A Call to Remember

Fresh mercies must not drown the remembrance of former mercies, nor must the glory of the present instruments of good to the church diminish the just honour of those who went before them, since God is the same who wrought by both. Moses gave to one part of Israel a very rich and fruitful country, but it was on the outside of Jordan. Joshua gave to all Israel the holy land, within Jordan. So the law has given to some few of God’s spiritual Israel worldly blessings, earnests of good things to come; but our Lord Jesus, the true Joshua, provided for all the children of promise spiritual blessings, and the heavenly Canaan. Matthew Henry’s Commentary on Joshua 12-1-6 from (An Exposition of the Old and New Testaments (1708-10), known also as Matthew Henry’s Commentary on the Whole Bible).

Joshua 12 presents us with a listing of those Kingdoms Conquered by Moses and then by Joshua representing the restoration of the lands that had been  promised to Abraham.  Throughout the scriptures it is chronicled about God’s Mercy, God’s Grace, God’s Sovereignty, God’s Glory and God’s faithfulness.  Over and over again, we are able to see God’s victory which He accomplishes through and in spite of Man’s foolishness and weakness.

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photo courtesy of @istockphoto.com

Like the Loving Heavenly Father that He is, He shows His mercy over and over again to us.  He recognizes our frailty; yet, He so wants us to develop hearts that are able to see Him one day with full understanding that He is the Greatest Treasure, He is Magnificent Glory, He is beauty beyond anything we have ever known, and His is the pureness of love that our hearts are longing for.  He is well aware that the only way for us to reach that understanding and lay aside the foolish arrogance, self-absorption, and self-exalting nature of our hearts so that we might see Him is through trials and tribulations which force us to let go of those things that cannot satisfy our souls. Too often we cling to things or aspire to greater “rewards or treasures” on earth; yet, God wants us to keep our eyes focused on Him and eternity.

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When I Am Most Fragile

Victory’s Battle Cry—A Study in Joshua Part 14- When I Am Most Fragile

Have you ever noticed that whenever you experience an amazing victory in Christ that suddenly there seems to be an all out attack against you? Suddenly, yesterday’s joyous strength and hope seems only a memory. You awoke feeling less than victorious. Suddenly, you remember how fragile you are and the weight of your ineptness seems to overwhelm. Everything around you gives the appearance that you are being attacked from every side. You know that God gave you the victory yesterday; yet, suddenly you wonder if He will today.

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Photo used by permission of Sarah Barba to whom the copyright belongs—click on link

In Joshua 11, we find that very scene. The fame regarding God’s Children being victorious in gaining all the Southern lands of Canaan had quickly spread. Joshua had returned to Gilgal; perhaps to rest before going out to take the lands of the north. The Kings of the North began joining forces to launch their attack on the Children of Israel. They did not desire to bow to God Almighty. Instead, they planned to annihilate the people of God before they could spread northward into their lands. Much the same response we get when trying to go forth and spread the gospel. These warriors from the north were stronger and had great horses and chariots with which to attack the Israel Nation who were on foot.

What was God’s answer? Oh, that I will get to in a moment after I confess that for the last three days I have been the one who felt very fragile in this pilgrimage journey.

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Fighting for Joy In a Chaotic World EFFIE DARLENE BARBA

Are you fighting to hold tight to the joy in Christ throughout the trials of your life? Join me and know that we can do this together.