Wednesday, June 29, 2016

If We Saw What God Saw

But the LORD said to Samuel, 
"Do not consider his appearance or his height, 
for I have rejected him. 
The LORD does not look at the things people look at. 
People look at the outward appearance, 
but the LORD looks at the heart." 
- 1 Samuel 16:7

The Lord was telling Samuel that what he was seeing was deceiving. 

Although the man in front of him looked like someone God would call according to the ideals of this world... 

he wasn't. 

Samuel needed to look beyond his preconceived notions of a warrior. 

When he did, he found a shepherd boy tending sheep named David. 

That's right. THAT David.

God calls those we lest expect because He knows the heart. 

If we draw near, and speak to the One who knows the very heart of those around us, 

how much more powerful would our relationships be?

Something to ponder about.


Monday, June 27, 2016

Have You Prayed as Much as You've Talked?

As women, we tend to process outloud. 

If something is weighing on our hearts, we immediately turn to a listening ear to vent or cry. 

But what if God wants you to completely rely on Him in this... 

What if we were to "go to the throne before we go to the phone?" 

What if we kept our tears and our own listening ears tuned to Him. 

His ways are better than our ways and He is able to do abundantly more than we can ask, dream or imagine. But are we running to Him? 

Are we complaining/venting more about our problem to others rather than lifting it up in prayer to God? 

Remember, prayer changes everything! 

Our God is a mighty God. 

A challenge to consider this week - next time a girlfriend comes to you with a burden, ask if you can pray for her. Don't wait until you get home and forget, but pray with her right on the spot

Bring the author and perfecter of our faith into the conversation

Friday, June 24, 2016

No Longer a Slave

"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, 

the new creation has come: 

The old has gone, the new is here!" 

- 2 Corinthians 5:17

You are no longer a slave to sin. 

Read that again.
You are no longer a slave to sin.

If you keep looking in the rearview mirror at the past, how can you possibly focus on what God has ahead for you? 

Focus on Christ, throw off the old, and understand you are covered in forgiveness and abundantly loved. The Lord can make your path straight, but we must fist choose to focus on Him and ignore the pushes of the enemy to dwell on things we cannot change.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Do Not Fear

The phrase "do not be afraid" appears approximately 365 times in the bible.
Conveniently, that is once for every day of the year.

When we see words or phrases repeated in the bible, it meant the speaker was really trying to get that message across because the audience was an oral audience - the majority were illiterate so they carried on what they heard through memorization. 

Back then, they would more quickly rely on their memory than a piece of paper because you could lose a paper... (a bit different for us today with technology, we can't even remember a phone number!) 

So now, when you see phrases repeated in the bible, think of it as being bolded or all in caps. There is an important message to be heard.

Do not be afraid.

Monday, June 20, 2016

A Holy God and All Those OT Laws

The God of the Old Testament required all these laws (hundreds of laws!) I was always turned off by this God and convinced myself He was different than the God of the New Testament... 

But He's not. 

You see, God required these laws to be followed because he loved His people and chose to live among the Israelites to deliver them into the promised land. In order for a Holy God to be so close to such a sinful nation, much was required of them to remain pure, and the consequences were severe if they didn't. 

You see, God is so Holy, His people had to follow all those laws. 

But guess what?

When Jesus died on the cross, he took our sin upon him and made us pure in God's sight. 

Not only are we now free from the law, but the same God who was so Holy no one could look upon Him, the same God who required hundreds of laws because of His holiness, is now the same God that dwells within you.

And He is for you! How powerful is that?!

Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty!

Friday, June 17, 2016

Believe and Do Not Doubt

“If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, 

Who gives generously to all without finding fault, 

and it will be given to you. 

But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, 

because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, 

blown and tossed by the wind.” 

- James‬ ‭1:5-6‬ 

How amazing is our God that if we simply ask for His guidance He gives it freely. 

Yet our faith is the make it or break it factor here. 

God wants us to learn to trust Him wholeheartedly. 

Toss aside any doubt that is warring your thoughts. 

Step into a humble decision to trust, and believe God, that His timing is better and His plans are better. Ask Him for guidance, direction, and hold tightly to His word. He wants to help you, but you must first choose in your heart to put Him first before all else. God is good my friends, He is capable of far more than we've seen or imagined. If we believe and do not doubt, beautiful things will happen

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Live a Life Worthy of the Call

"As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life 
worthy of the calling you have received. 
Be completely humble and gentle; 
be patient, bearing with one another in love. 
Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit 
through the bond of peace.” 
- Ephesians‬ ‭4:1-3‬ ‭

Dwell on these words, and choose to live by them today. 

Recite them to yourself and ask yourself, what does this word mean to me? 

Did I live this out today? 

Does this word describe my character?:







Monday, June 13, 2016

Love Defined

When God commands us to "love our Neighbour" he isn't talking about an emotional, warm feeling of love for everyone around us. Let's face it, there are just some people that get on our nerves, hurt us, annoy us, or that we just don't trust. The love Jesus was talking about was the same love he modeled on the cross - action based love. 

God loved the rebellious world (the world that rejected him) that he GAVE his one and only Son, Jesus. He gave. God is full of emotion, all that we can feel He is more than capable of feeling (we are made in His image) but He sets aside the fleeting emotion of love, and puts into action true Godly love, demonstrated on the cross. 

Be intentional about your action-based love. 

How are you showing your love for God? 

How are you showing your love for others? 

Remove complaint, gossip, and negativity from your vocabulary and put love in action! 

Start doing for others what they cannot do in return for you. That is real love.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Hope Defined

Hope is an optimistic attitude of mind based on an expectation of positive outcomes related to events and circumstances. 

1. Optimistic attitude: We must choose optimism in our waiting. Don't undermine or bad mouth your circumstances but choose to acknowledge the one whom your hope is in.

2. Positive outcome: ask yourself, what am I hoping for? Something as grande and majestic as heaven, or something small and immediate like a paycheck. Whatever it is, try to see that positive outcome through the eyes of Jesus. How will He use that outcome for His kingdom?

3. Trust: I've recently learned hope is weak without trust. Do you trust the One whom you place your hope in? Our hope, if not realized, will only lead to extreme disappointment if we don't trust the One who holds our future. We must make peace that we may not see what we are hoping for in this lifetime. We must learn to trust the One whom we put our hope in.

That is hope.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Faith Defined

"Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see." - Hebrews 11:1

I truly believe confidence is a choice, not a feeling. It coincides with trust. The Hebrew pictograph of "faith" is a picture of a man in a rowboat, moving forward, but facing backward. Our history shows us where we have succeeded, where God has moved, and that drives us forward. The best way to step into faith, is to be reminded of how God has already worked in your life because you can be sure that He hasn't brought you this far to just leave you.

He will never leave you, nor forsake you.

Now that is faith.

Monday, June 6, 2016

The Burden of Worry

He sees the weight you carry 

and He wants you to walk free from the burden of worry. 

We can run to Him and cast off all that is weighing us down. 

He's calling us to confide in Him, 

to talk with Him, 

and let Him take over. 

He's calling us to acknowledge His goodness and faithfulness 

as we recall His blessings in our life. 

When we lift Him up in praise and thanksgiving, 

all that has us worried seems to fade away. 

He is taking it from us. 

He is offering to make beauty from ashes. 

He is calling you "Trust in Me, My child... 

Watch my power at work. 

See how great your God is"

He's got this.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Clean Out the Dirt

As I read Philippians last night, I was reminded of this beautiful wisdom. 

If you struggle with worry, anxiety, or frustration, a lot of our "feelings" begin with our thoughts. Paul wrote this to remind people that God wants you to see and dwell on the beauty of this life. 

Open your eyes to His majestic presence all around you. 

I've put this note on my desk at work to remind me there is no room for anxious thoughts - only true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent and praiseworthy thoughts. 

It's time to clean out the dirt in your mind and make a pristine home for God's Spirit to thrive within us! Cause after all, if we are dwelling on the negative, we may be shutting out that still small voice who will guide us through it all!