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Abstinence

What does ABSTINENCE mean to you?

JESUS my Lord and Savior

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©All Rights Reserved–Anastasia Diamond

Abstinence is one of those words, and subjects, that means many different things to many different people.We have numerous religious, cultural, moral, and societal standards that affect our personal thoughts and judgments about abstinence.


So…what does ABSTINENCE mean to you?


To you, abstinence may mean turning from pieces of your past…to make a new commitment before God for the present or the future.

To you, abstinence may mean only men make this choice.

To you, abstinence may mean only women make this choice.

To you, abstinence may mean…I can do this…but not that.

To you, abstinence may mean practicing a spiritual discipline.

To you, abstinence may mean only those with sexual hangups make this choice.

To you, abstinence may mean only single people make this choice.

To you, abstinence may mean married people can also make this choice.

To you, abstinence may mean abstention from food, such as fasting.

To you, abstinence may mean making a joint commitment of purity with your current boyfriend or girlfriend, but does not apply, if or when, you become engaged.

To you, abstinence may mean making a joint commitment of purity with your future spouse.

To you, abstinence may mean making a singular commitment between you and God..without any prospect of marriage.

To you, abstinence may mean abstention from alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, or food.

To you, abstinence may mean believing true love waits…in purity…until entering a biblical marriage relationship.

To you, abstinence may mean choosing to be holy, as He is holy.

To you, abstinence may mean it is okay to masturbate, but not have sexual relations with another.

To you, abstinence may mean learning to love God more than your passion nature.

To you, abstinence may mean it is a way to avoid having sexual relations with your boyfriend, girlfriend, or spouse.

To you, abstinence may mean it is the safest form of birth control.

To you, abstinence may mean giving up the most important part of your life.

To you, abstinence may mean submitting your passion nature and will to God’s perfect will for your life.

To you, abstinence may mean the only form of protection from sexually transmitted diseases.

To you, abstinence may mean understanding and believing that your body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit.

To you, abstinence may mean foolishness in today’s permissive society.


What does Abstinence mean to you?

Please Leave a Comment or send me an
E-mail…

There are so many possible answers…and points of view. I look forward to learning what abstinence means to you.

Many blessings and thank you for visiting.

-Anastasia


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May Your Roots Grow Deep and Wide

JESUS My Lord and Savior ©Anastasia Diamond

All Rights Reserved ©2009-2010

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Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. 1 Corinthians 16:13

As Christ-Followers, we are to stand on the rock of our salvation; our foundation in Jesus Christ. In the midst of our trials, when all around us is shaking, we are to stand. That is so much easier said than done, for our faith and hope tends to waver in difficult times. Most assuredly, in what many are calling ‘the end times’, Christ-Followers are feeling the heat of increasing persecution, and the rumblings of things to come. This is not the time to give up, or give in. Our Abba Father grafted us into His kingdom for such a time as this.

Like you, my foundation has shaken a bit at times. Ultimately, and to His glory, we have stood; we do now stand, and pray by His grace that we will continue to stand. However, there are those wispy fragments of time; seasons when an unexpected tug of instability pulls extra hard, attempting to tip our foundation. We are human, not God…therefore, we do walk in dark valleys, and we do grow weary at times.

Sometimes…weariness manifests as stray thoughts, disappointment, fear, or feeling lost, abandoned or alone. At times, doubts caused by unanswered theological questions, or feeling discouraged over unfulfilled hopes, dreams, promises, or unanswered prayers threaten and shake our foundation. And, at times, weariness comes as we walk through overwhelming, deep, dry and isolated places…mentally, emotionally, physically or spiritually.

Sometimes we feel God has turned a deaf ear to our prayers. And, sometimes we feel God heard our prayers, but is punishing or ignoring us because of something we did…or did not do.

Living in wavering hope and faith too long may completely shake our foundation; opening the door to long-term depression, Christian cynicism, spiritual oppression, hopelessness…or permanent disappointment and anger with God.

However, remembering who we are as blood-bought bodies of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ…resets our balance, refreshes our faith, restores our hope, and re-secures our foundation in Him.

Joshua Gove

Just as Joshua Trees Grow and Thrive in Groves…      Christ-Followers Grow and Thrive in Fellowship

May I draw your attention to the unique Joshua tree; named by Mormon pioneers while crossing the desert. The strange, reaching branches reminded them of Old Testament Joshua; reaching his hands heavenward in prayer; waving them on to the Promised Land. Let the Joshuas encouraging wave you on…through your dry times and desert moments.

The Joshua tree is a member of the lily family; the largest of the yuccas. Joshuas grow only at elevations from 2,000 to 6,000 feet in the high and dry Mojave Desert, where they can live up to an astounding 1,000 years old! I am truly blessed to live where the Joshuas grow, and give personal testimony of their wonder.

Joshua trees have two root systems. The first is shallow, reaching down only a couple of feet. The second stores surplus water, develops massive bulbs, grows wide, and up to 40 feet deep. In the midst of the dryness of the desert, when all around them without a firm foundation are shaking, and may fall…the Joshua tree stands!

Let us remember that a single, shallow root will not sustain our faith. We also need a deep and wide spiritual root system. Nature sustains Joshuas in groups called groves. God sustains Christ-Followers in groups called fellowship.

The Joshua’s spiny leaf turns upwards in hopes it will catch any moisture in the air, which it then stores in the limbs and trunk. Let us also turn our prayers upwards, that we will receive and store the watering of Holy Spirit guidance…coupled with God’s Word reigning in our heart.

Joshua Tree in Bloom!
Allow the Holy Spirit to Bloom and Produce Good Fruit in You

Joshuas bear 1.25 to 1.5 inch creamy yellow and green, bell-shaped flowers, with 12 to 18 inch clusters on each branch.  Unfortunately, some trees do not bloom annually, but for those that do…the flowers, though beautiful, give off a very unpleasant odor.

The fruit of the Joshua is green, brown, and about 2.5 inches long. The fruit, which matures in late spring, falls from the branches;  dropping flat, black seeds on the desert floor.

Only the Pronuda moth has the special organs needed to fertilize the Joshua flowers. The moth’s larvae feeds on Joshua seeds, which cannot reproduce without the moth…which is equally dependent on the tree. Likewise, Christ-Followers are dependent on God’s Holy Spirit to fertilize and produce good fruit in us in His name. In turn, Almighty God has faith in His Christ-Followers…that we will carry out His great commission.

The  government protects Joshua trees; you must have permission to cut one down, even on your own property. Our Abba Father protects His Christ-Followers; only He holds the number of our days in His hand.

May we, like the Joshua tree, stand through our dry times…and not be shaken. May we have fellowship, praise Him in all things, and produce good fruit in His name.

May we reach to the heavens with our prayers, and may the roots of our hope and our faith…grow deep and wide; watered by the divine Word of God.

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All Rights Reserved ©2009-2010…”JESUS my Lord and Savior-ANASTASIA DIAMOND’S Prayerful Reflections…and Photographs on a Spiritual Journey from Darkness into HIS Light” Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from Anastasia Diamond is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided full and clear credit is given author/photographer and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content at: https://jesusmylordandsavior.wordpress.com/      Bookmark and Share

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I like this Flower...I LOVE my Children

JESUS My Lord and Savior

©All Rights Reserved –Anastasia Diamond

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How often do we say, I love this or I love that…when talking about some thing that has no known eternal value?

Our casual wording gives everyday stuff a place of equal importance with the most treasured people and relationships in our life. In doing so, we speak words that unthinkingly may appear to lessen the value of our most important love relationships by comparison.

Should the words we speak equally compare the lustful attraction we may have to a chocolate chip cookie, piece of jewelry, an electronic gadget, a sport, a game, or a new car…with the blessings of the love we have for and share with, our children, husband, wife, parents, family, friends…or Jesus?

What a ridiculous comparison. Yet, every time we speak the word love in relation to stuff…we verbally exalt that stuff to a place of honor…while diminishing by comparison, the value of our love relationships with people and with God.

I don’t know about you, but I am wondering how I can possibly continue to use the same word when saying I love (fill in the blank with your favorite stuff) …I love you…and I love Jesus?

Continuing to do so feels like an implied insult to our loved ones…and most especially to the holy name and nature of God our Creator, His Holy Spirit, and His Son; Jesus Christ.

Clearly, English lacks the love-word options offered in Greek and some other languages. However, I can train the English words of my mouth to define the differences. Therefore, I challenge myself to this change.

This is my prayer:

Heavenly Father, I want the position of my heart and the words of my mouth to match.

May my words express that I like my stuff…and I love my people; most of all You dear God.

Father, I pray for Your Holy Spirit wisdom, discernment and knowledge…that I will make proper word choices to express my emotional attachment, attraction, or reaction to…all worldly stuff.

No matter what stuff I am talking about… I submit all stuff – every thing – to You for clarification of its’ true worth: home, belongings, gifts, music, movie, song, TV show, computer, car, circumstance, antique, money, flower, collectible, furniture, food, book, restaurant, color, clothes, shoes, phone, place….and more. I submit it all to You.

I pray I will remember to save all of my true love-words for people…and for You.

Dear Abba Father, I love You.

I pray You will continue to teach me…that I will receive and understand more from Your precious mind and heart of love.

These things I pray…in the name, power, and authority of Your Son, Jesus. Amen…and amen.

All Rights Reserved ©2009-2010…”JESUS my Lord and Savior-ANASTASIA DIAMOND’S Prayerful Reflections…and Photographs on a Spiritual Journey from Darkness into HIS Light” Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from Anastasia Diamond is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided full and clear credit is given author/photographer and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content at: https://jesusmylordandsavior.wordpress.com/

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Bethlehem…

Jesus my Lord and Savior

©All Rights Reserved-Anastasia Diamond

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Was Jesus Christ truly God manifest on earth in the flesh?

If that is true, and I believe it is… Christmas is actually the glorious celebration of Almighty God, the Creator of the universe, fulfilling Biblical Messianic prophecy when He came to earth manifest as our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, over 2000 years ago.

Almighty God has always been with us in that He has always been with His creation. However, this all powerful Creator chose to have an even closer relationship with His creation.

The birth, life, and death of Jesus was Almighty God’s personal demonstration of His Divine will for each of us to have an opportunity to go to Heaven… and live life everlasting…with Him.

God chose a young virgin for Jesus’ mother, and a humble manger in Bethlehem for His birthplace. Did you know that Jesus’ birth alone fulfilled 48 of the over 300 prophecies about Him.

This Christmas, let us celebrate the birth of the Son…and the manifestation of the Father, God Almighty in His Son. For the true message of Christmas is one that is close to incomprehensible: Our Creator and Abba Father, the One and and only Almighty God chose to come to earth as one of us, that He could live and die for us.

For it is God Himself who lies in that manger; vulnerable and human, while still Divinely omniscient (all knowing), omnipotent (all-powerful) and omnipresent (present in every place at the same time).

Almighty God came to us, embodied as His only begotten Son, the baby Jesus. His sole purpose was to understand, forgive, and take our sins upon Himself; that He may live and die for us.

This Christmas, yes…let us celebrate the birth of the baby, Jesus. Let us  also celebrate the divine gift and sacrificial offering of our heavenly Father, God Almighty, for He chose to give Himself to live and die for me…and for you.

Scripture from the King James version of the Holy Bible

“Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Emmanuel. ” Isaiah 7:14

“Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.”           Matthew 1:23

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God; and all things were made through Him and apart from Him nothing was made which was made…And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth”  John 1:1-3, 14

Jesus said:

“I and the Father are one.” John 10:30

“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you know me, you will know my Father also.”  Jon 14:6-

“Whoever hates me hates my Father also.”  John 15:23

“If I am not doing the works of my Father, then do not believe me; but if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.” John 10:37-38

“Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority; but the Father who dwells in me does his works.” John 14:10

“Very truly I tell you, the Son can do nothing on his own, but only what he sees the Father doing; for whatever the Father does, the Son does likewise. The Father loves the Son and shows him all that he himself is doing; and he will show him greater works than these, so that you will be astonished.” John 5:19-20

“The Father judges no one but has given all judgment to the Son, so that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Anyone who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him.” John 5:22-23

“If God were your Father, you would love me, for I came from God and now I am here. I did not come on my own, but he sent me.”  John 8:42

“All things have been handed over to me by my Father; and no one knows who the Son is except the Father, or who the Father is except the Son and anyone to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.” Luke 10:22

All Rights Reserved ©2009-2010…”JESUS my Lord and Savior-ANASTASIA DIAMOND’S Prayerful Reflections…and Photographs on a Spiritual Journey from Darkness into HIS Light” Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from Anastasia Diamond is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided full and clear credit is given author/photographer and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content at: https://jesusmylordandsavior.wordpress.com/




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JESUS my Lord and Savior

©All Rights Reserved-Anastasia Diamond

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Nature's Cathedral

Nature’s Cathedral

The Life Altering Power of Praising God

I cannot think of any thing beyond accepting Jesus as your Lord and Savior that is more powerful and life altering than praising God. Do you remember the depth and breadth of your praise when you first believed? Did His Word, the Holy Bible, illuminate before your astonished eyes…causing you to cry out in spontaneous praise of our Lord and Savior? Were your waking moments and your nightly dreams filled with His presence, and your praise of Him? Did you see His hand at work in everything…and praise Him, the Creator of all that is, in awe of all His creation? Perhaps you were like me, so awestruck by His divine presence, that you were on your face praising Him and glorifying His name every time you prayed…or thought of Him.

It is Never Too Early or Too Late to Start Praising God

It is never too early or too late to start praising God. If you are not familiar with praising Him, start now. Your praise may be loud and filled with shouts. Your praise may be soft and whispered. Your praise may be in song or dance. Your praise may be silent…or in your prayer language. Your praise may be the lifting of your hands, or the lowering of your eyes as you glorify Him. Your praise may be all of this…or something different.

God receives your praise wherever you are, and in whatever you are doing…just as long as you are praising Him; the one and only true Almighty God. You may be alone at home, or in a crowd. You may be in a country church, an elaborate cathedral, or a quiet meadow when you praise Him.

It is the Position of Your Heart That Truly Matters to Him

Although others may tell you differently…the position of your physical body does not really matter when you are praising Him. You may sit, stand, kneel, walk, or lay down…it does not matter. For, it is the position of your heart that truly matters to Him.

Our heavenly Father designed the divine communication process of praise as a catalyst to draw us continually ever closer to Him. His desire is to have a preciously reciprocal relationship with each and every one of us. He is so loving and good to us, that each time we praise Him, we also open the door of our hearts for Him to transform us miraculously into all we can become in Him.

Praise Him in All Things

Praising Him in all things has the power to change us; change how we think, feel, speak, act and react to the circumstances of our life. Praising Him can even change how we look, and how others see us. When God’s divine presence comes to dwell in us through His most Holy Spirit, He softens, molds and shapes us in body, mind and spirit. Changing us into the spirit-filled men and women our Abba Father created us to be.

It may have been a while since you praised Him by making a joyful noise unto the Lord…or you may have never praised Him before. Either way, your ability to praise Him is there, ready and available. Glorify Him today and let His light in you shine. Be that light in the darkness…praising Him in all things, every where you go. Give Him your unconditional praise in every circumstance of your life. Everytime we praise and worship God, we position ourselves nearer to His throne and His perfect will for us.

Rejoice…Make a Joyful Noise…Transform Your Life

Dear ones, rejoice! Lift up your hands, your voices, and your hearts in praise of Him. Make that joyful noise…pray and praise Him without ceasing. Praise Him with renewed commitment, enthusiasm and joy. Allow the power of praising and glorifying God to perform the mighty work of drawing you closer to Him and transforming you into all you can be for Him. Praise Him, in the mighty name, power, and authority of His Son, Jesus Christ. Praise Him today, tomorrow, and for eternity. Transform your life and your relationship with your Abba Father, His Son – Jesus Christ, and His most Holy Spirit. Praise Him.

All Rights Reserved ©2009-2010…”JESUS my Lord and Savior-ANASTASIA DIAMOND’S Prayerful Reflections…and Photographs on a Spiritual Journey from Darkness into HIS Light” Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from Anastasia Diamond is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided full and clear credit is given author/photographer and with appropriate and specific direction to the original content at: https://jesusmylordandsavior.wordpress.com/

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Heart Reflections

Heart Reflections

JESUS my Lord and Savior

© All Rights Reserved–Anastasia Diamond

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Do You Have a Root of Bitterness in Your Heart?

Me…have a root of bitterness in my heart? I don’t think so. Maybe you do…but not me. Ha! That is wishful and false thinking my friend. We are all capable of planting, watering, feeding, and nurturing a deep, resistant root of bitterness in our hearts. Good seed or bad, we also reap the harvest of that which grows there.

Is Resentment Your Secret Companion?

Be honest with yourself. Have you ever harbored a sour, negative attitude toward someone? Have you felt the ugly rise of a prejudicial thought – then suppressed it – until the next time? Do you have deep preconceived or unsubstantiated thoughts, ideas or beliefs about certain people, places or things? Are you bound and gagged with hatred, or spewing it on everyone you meet? Are intense angry or violent emotions raging inside of you? Does a false smile and friendly words cover your intolerance? Is unforgiveness your compass? Do you walk in fear more than in faith? Are you more prideful than you are humble? Do you make less of others…so you can make more of yourself? Do your eyes and ears absorb and scatter false or worldly seeds in the soil of your heart?

Are you tainted with jealousy and envy?

Are you stuck in the past? Do you say things to hurt others…with or without care for their feelings? Are you holding on to the words others have used to stone you? Do you defile the temple of the Holy Spirit with the actions of your body? Is resentment your secret companion? How many more deep, dark, or degrading roots are buried in your heart? I could go on for at least two or three more paragraphs of questions. However, you are smart. Prayerfully you are identifying the remnants of more bitter roots in your own heart. Therefore, let us move along to the good news.

Going on A Spiritual Seek and Destroy Mission

Digging up the roots of your bitterness is a spiritual seek and destroy mission. Using the spade of truth, the Holy Spirit will also provide the tools of guidance, discernment, and wisdom necessary to cut and remove the tangled roots of your bitterness. He will replace your willful and rotted roots with His own holy root. He will provide the new soil and the seedlings of faith for you to sow new thoughts, speak new words, and harvest from a life filled with new actions in Him. His root will reach deep into the refreshed soil of your heart; producing new, strong, and good fruit in you…and through you – for Him.

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New England

HE is the Creator of All That is...

JESUS my Lord and Savior

©All Rights Reserved-Anastasia Diamond

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The mighty and powerful names of God are His clear and loving messages of who He is to us, and for us. He never changes. Therefore, all that He was in biblical times is all that He is today, and will be tomorrow. As you read His names and their meanings, why not take a few moments to reflect on how He has been all of this to you; as well as the areas in your life where you need more of Him.

Call on Him, using His mighty and powerful names.  He is listening and waiting to hear from you.

Elohim Eternal Creator

1 Timothy 1:17

El ShaddaiAlmighty God

Genesis 17:1

Jehovah-Jireh – Lord our Provider

Genesis 22:10-14

Jehovah-Nissi Lord our Banner

Exodus 17:9-15

Jehovah-Rophe Lord our Healer

Exodus 15:24-26

Jehovah-Shalom – Lord our Peace

Judges 6:22

Jehovah-Tsidkenu – Lord our Righteousness

Jeremiah 25:5-6

Jehovah-Mkaddesh Lord our Sanctifier

Exodus 31:15

Jehovah-Shammah – Lord Ever Present

Matthew 28:20

Jehovah-Rohi – Lord our Good Shepherd

John 10:11-12

Jehovah-Elyon – Lord Most High

Psalm 97:9

Jehovah-Hoseenu – Lord our Maker

Psalm 95:6

Jehovah-Eloheenu – Lord our God

Psalm 99:5, 8-9

Jehovah-Elohim – Lord God

Genesis 2:4

Jehovah-Eloheka – Lord your God

Exodus 20:2, 5, 7

Jehovah-Elohay – Lord my God

Zechariah 14: 5-7, 9

Jehovah-Sabaoth – Lord of all Hosts

1 Samuel 17:43-45

I agree with you in prayer today, in the powerful and anointed name of Jesus…that our loving Father will hear your prayers and meet your needs within His perfect will for you. –Amen

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