You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You. Isaiah 26:3
I thought this was a good verse to end our week with. I’ve been going through some crazy stuff lately and I’m pretty sure that most of you are facing your own stuff. Every day is a new challenge, every step has booby traps. I’m constantly trying to take a different road, only to find that it circles back around to where I was.
This verse made me pause to think, regardless of where I am, I can carry peace with me because my heart trusts in Him always. Whether I can see clearly or not-peace. Whether I step in a big pile of trouble-peace. If I keep focused on Him and continue to trust Him, I’m promised peace.
I believe that distractions come to test my resolve to do what I’ve been destined to do. This can be especially difficult for those of us with a miniscule attention span. Proving once again how important my reliance on God must be.
“I love each of you with the same love that the Father loves me. You must continually let my love nourish your hearts. If you keep my commands, you will live in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands, for I continually live nourished and empowered by his love. My purpose for telling you these things is so that the joy that I experience will fill your hearts with overflowing gladness!” John 15:9-11
As I read these verses this morning, I discovered something I wanted to share with you. The love of God must be what nourishes our hearts, it’s where our power comes from. Without love, we are powerless to keep God’s commands. We try and try to do it in ourselves, but it’s simply impossible to do unless we allow His love to consume us.
Think about it; 1 John 4:18 says, There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involves torment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.
It’s the perfection of love working in us that overcomes fears. It’s the perfection of love in us that heals the sick, raises the dead. It’s the perfection of love working in us that brings peace and provision.
1 Corinthians 13 is known as the love chapter, but in verse 13 it says, And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
If God is Love and His Love lives in us, than there is nothing impossible for us when we submit and surrender to that perfect love.
Let His love nourish and sustain you today. Be empowered by the current of it that runs through you and passes on to others.
What harm could a man bring to me? With God on my side, I will not be afraid of what comes. The roaring praises of God fill my heart as I trust his promises.Psalms 56:4 Passion Translation
Just because you’re battling fear doesn’t mean you have it. I think sometimes when we are fighting something, we automatically think that we have it and just give in to it.
Let me give you an example. Ever fight a cold? You can be taking everything to try to get rid of it, speaking right, taking extra vitamin C, and natural remedies, but the moment you tell someone, ‘I have a cold!’ you give into all that comes with it and you find yourself in bed, covers over your head feeling miserable.
It’s happened to all of us at one time or another with something in our lives. In John 10:10, we are shown that satan has a strategy. He comes to steal, kill and to destroy. We also understand that his most powerful tool is deception. He’s trained in making things look and feel real that aren’t.
But here is our key to victory; the Word of God and the presence of God. When we abide in that place, we rest in the victory that He has already won for us. How sweet is that?! I’ve gone from slave to free the moment I believed His Word over the word of my enemy. He held me prisoner in my mind but now I have the mind of Christ and the battle I fight there is won in the Word. Do you see what I’m saying?
Father, I ask that as this post is read today, you will stir each one into greater revelation. May the lies of the enemy be exposed causing your people to walk in the victory you intended them to have. Psalm 19:14 “May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.”
This morning God brought my attention to Naomi, which surprised me when His instructions said to go to the book of Ruth. I love that story! Walt and I made Ruths vow to Naomi part of our marriage vows. But what God showed me was about Naomi.
Ruth 1:20-21 NLT “Don’t call me Naomi,” she told them. “Instead call me Mara, for the Almighty has made life very bitter for me. I went away full, but the Lord has brought me home empty. Why should you call me Naomi when the Lord has caused me to suffer and the Almighty has sent such tragedy?”
Sometimes in the middle of our struggle to understand, we blame, and very often we blame the wrong person or thing. We fail to understand what has happened to us or why, for that matter. Who can know the mind of God or the ways of God?
Why that much loss? Now that I think of it, Naomi was very much like Job. But when she held her first grandson in her arms, she forgot about her sorrow and knew that the Lord had truly blessed her. In reality, God blessed her the day she was born.
Why the day she was born? Because God has good plans for each one of us and those plans gave her Ruth. Life can be hard sometimes and so totally unpredictable, but instead of viewing God as the cause of our sorrow, we must view him as the master builder.
It all starts with a pile of wood, blocks and various supplies on an empty lot. To most who observe, they just see a mess but soon it will turn into a beautiful dwelling place. Only the master builder knows the end from the beginning. He’s seen the blueprint, he knows the outcome. Trust the master builder!
Whatever you’ve been through, don’t get so focused on it, that you lose sight of what God is in the process of doing with you. He’s promised something beautiful, so be patient, wait and see. Your end will be better then your beginning, better then you could ever imagine. He’s building his Kingdom and you’re a part of it. Don’t be surprised if you look around and find chaos. You just don’t have HIS perspective. Trust the Master. He knows what He’s doing!
Father, I would never have planned this for myself but I know You have. There’s nothing that happened or will happen to me that you won’t use for Your glory. Be big in me today. Bigger than all my history is the future You’ve arranged because You love me. And I love You! More then my heart can express. It’s in Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.
No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us. Philippians 3:13-14 NLT
I’ve found it. The most beautiful place to live is in my future, not my past. If you only see me as ‘that’ person in ‘that’ place with ‘those’ problems, NEWS FLASH! I’m no longer there, I’ve moved on.
A long time ago, I had a friend who would drag up my past when I was with her. I nicely reminded her that I was no longer that person and unless she could see me for who I was today and help me into my future, we had no basis for relationship. It doesn’t matter who it is, sister, brother, father, mother, long time friend, if they’re not cheering you on, they’re holding you back.
You can’t get far looking in the rear view mirror. Focus forward my friend!
Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies. Philippians 4:8-9 MSG
It’s easy to focus on the flaws you see in others, but the more you do that, the more you become dissatisfied with what you have. It’s the same in every area of our lives, if your focus is wrong, it corrupts your thinking, your speech and actions, because what you think will inevitably be the very thing that destroys you.
You can’t afford to think like the world. If you claim to be a Christian and your life reflects the worlds culture, attitude and speech, I would implore you to begin filling your fine mind with the Word of God. Turn the TV channel to some good teaching on a Christian channel. Saturate your mind with good things until you find your whole body turning around to obey Christ.
Think about it, if you’re dehydrated, you replenish with water, right? Coffee, though wonderful, will only dehydrate you more. Well, your spirit is also hungry and can’t be satisfied with food, drink, fun, talking or anything else you are addicted to. It must be fed the Word and communion with God who loved you and gave His son for you so that you could once again come to Him. He gave you everything you would ever need, His Holy Spirit who is in you, working to do His pleasure and you’re still stuck on you.
Father, filter out the things in me that represent the culture of this world and enable me to saturate myself with You. May I make room for you so that You can do what You need to do on earth through me. It’s for Your glory, in Jesus name, Amen
The one I love calls to me: Arise, my dearest. Hurry, my darling. Come away with me! I have come as you have asked to draw you to my heart and lead you out. For now is the time, my beautiful one. Song of Songs 2:10 Passion Translation
From my journal on 01192012: “It’s time to get the attention of those slumbering. Awake I say, Awake! Stop living in comfort and ease, your spiritual laziness is keeping you from the readiness you need to be in. I’m releasing promise. I’m releasing vision. I’m releasing a multitude of giftings, but so few are paying attention. Awake, daughter of Zion. Awake from your slumber. Get your lamps trimmed and filled for the day has come, the marriage supper is being prepared. Do you sense the longing in you? Do you not sense it? Prepare yourself to receive what I’m pouring out on the earth, for in due season, you will reap if you faint not,” says the Lord.
Perhaps you’ve heard the call, the tugging on your spirit to come away, to be with Him, your beloved. There’s an old song I used to sing called, I Miss My Time With You, written by: LARNELLE HARRIS, PHILL MCHUGH
“I miss my time with you, those moments together. I need to be with you each day and it hurts me when you say, you’re too busy, busy trying to serve me, but how can you serve me when your spirits empty. There’s a longing in my heart, wanting more than just a part of you. It’s true, I miss my time with you.”
I used to make up every excuse in the book to avoid getting up early and having devotions, but the bottom line was, I didn’t know the value in spending time with God. I didn’t realize it would change me so, give me this much strength. I’ve always loved God, always had relationship with Him, almost always served Him, but my friend, until you’re intimate with someone, you’re not one with them and that is what God wants. He wants you to be one with Him.
Revelation 22:17, “And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.”
What will your response be? Excuse me while I run into his open arms of love and am swept away in His presence.
‘This is what I will do in the last days —I will pour out my Spirit on everybody and cause your sons and daughters to prophesy, and your young men will see visions, and your old men will experience dreams from God. Acts 2:17 TPT
Can you even imagine a day like that? That even outshines Acts 2:4, when 120 gathered together in one accord in a room and the Holy Spirit showed up and they all began to speak in tongues. Can you imagine? I’ve been in a large gathering where everyone was speaking in tongues, interceding for people around the world. It was such a wonderful experience.
But greater than that is coming. A day when He will pour out His Spirit on everybody. Wow, what a day that will be.
Today, I want you to try very hard to get Gods perspective, courage and tenacity. You can expect God will do His part. That what He said, He will absolutely do. When you see it, will you be convinced that God is a God of His Word? More blessed are those who have not seen but yet believed.
Within your heart you can make plans for your future, but the Lord chooses the steps you take to get there.Proverbs 16:9 TPT
Planning a job change? Planning a vacation? Planning to go into ministry? Planning to buy a house? Well you can plan what you want, but remember it’s God that chooses how you’ll get there. Everything in your life, God has purpose for, but the lessons of trust you’ll learn as you move are guaranteed to change your life.
There is nothing wrong with having goals and dreams, but allow God to be involved in developing them. He wants to be a part of your process. To bring you to a depth of relationship you’ve only dreamed of.
Don’t rush through life wishing and hoping. Take your time and bask in His presence. Tell Him, “Father, I only want your will in my life, but I know you also want to give me the desires of my heart. Direct my steps. Keep me in peace and help me to enjoy this walk with You.”
So I went to the potter’s house, and sure enough, the potter was there, working away at his wheel. Whenever the pot the potter was working on turned out badly, as sometimes happens when you are working with clay, the potter would simply start over and use the same clay to make another pot. Jeremiah 18:3-4 Message
Have you ever made a mistake? Perhaps you’ve messed up so bad you thought, “God will never be able to use me again!” There is nothing wasted with God. Nothing that He can’t make over if needed. He didn’t just forgive your past sins when you believed in Him, He forgave your future sins as well.
Ephesians 2:8-9 says; I mean that you have been saved by grace because you believed. You did not save yourselves; it was a gift from God. You are not saved by the things you have done, so there is nothing to boast about.
Stop allowing the past to condemn you and keep you from launching out in obedience today. That ship hasn’t sailed, it’s still waiting for you to step on board. Untie the lines, pull up the anchor and go. You’ll never feel qualified! You’ll never feel able. But with Christ giving direction, you’ll make it.
Father, thanks for making something beautiful of the mess I created of my life. When you saw I was marred, you gave me a new look and a new purpose. You make beautiful things out of the worst messes and I’m so thankful You found purpose in me. All for Your glory in Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.