Half Way There

In just a few more weeks, Christmas Day will be upon us.

It is so easy it is to get overwhelmed with all the things to do and prepare for.

When you’re overwhelmed, the best thing to do is to take a minute and remind yourself what Christmas means and why we celebrate it.

Christmas is a holiday that celebrates the gift of God’s love and presence through Jesus Christ.

To restore you.

To reconcile you.

To renew you.

Jesus was born for you.

He who was from the beginning became flesh so you would know God.

Christmas is a reminder and a celebration of this truth:

“But whoever did want him, who believed he was who he claimed and would do what he said, He made to be their true selves, their child-of-God selves.” John 1:12 MSG

Wherever you are in your preparations for Christmas, my prayer is that your heart would be filled with the wonder of living loved as a child of God through the gift of Jesus today and every day after will be a celebration of it!

With You

God IS with you.

Present tense.

He does not reside in the past although He will heal it.

He is not waiting to show up for you tomorrow. 

He is here with you now.

Right where you are.

“The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”). MATTHEW 1:23 NIV

Jesus is the gift of God with us and the miracle of the present Presence.

God is with you and He desires to have a conversation with you all day long.

May you be filled with the presence of the present God through Jesus today.

Created To Give

“Each person is given something to do that shows who God is: Everyone gets in on it, everyone benefits. All kinds of things are handed out by the Spirit and to all kinds of people!”
1 Corinthians 12:7 MSG

As gift-buying is in full swing, I want to remind you that God has already given you precious gifts to give to others this year that you don’t have to buy.

Gifts unique to you and that are meant to be given.

God has given you the talents of your hands, the strengths of your personality, and the driving passion of your heart. He has given you spiritual gifts to bless others with. When you do, God uses you to reveal Himself to others.

It is not a prideful thing to use your gifts for the glory of God, that is what they are for. 

What gifts has God given you? 

Who are you going to give them to today?

Peace in the Middle of Chaos

“For I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.” ‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:11‬ ‭NIV‬‬

If this Christmas you are looking for love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness and more, look to God.

He has them for you.

All you have to do is ask.

He will give them to you.

This Christmas season, instead of replaying past moments or trying to create perfect moments in the present, let each moment be what it will be.

Enjoy the imperfections of this day and those to come.

Know that everything “being perfect” will not create the feeling of fulfillment you are looking for.

It won’t give you the peace you seek.

That only comes from God and is available regardless of what is happening around you.

Friend, my prayer for you today is that you will be filled with the Holy Spirit and the Heavenly Peace that God gives to help you as you walk among the complicated chaos of the humans around you.

Amen.

It’s You

“Again, the Kingdom of Heaven is like a merchant on the lookout for choice pearls. When he discovered a pearl of great value, he sold everything he owned and bought it!”  Matthew 13:44-46 NLT

In the above verse, Jesus is telling His own story.

The story of a man who found something so precious, that he happily sold all he had and paid the price for it.

Whatever your day looks like, I pray that today you stop for a minute and realize that your Savior sees you as a priceless pearl worth leaving heaven and all His rights for.

The reason He came to earth as a babe was to redeem the treasure that is worth the high price He paid on the Cross- YOU.

It’s you.

He lived, died and rose from the grave so He could love you today and for all eternity.

You are His treasure.

Beyond Measure

God loves you beyond measure.

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”‭‭ ROMANS‬ ‭5:8‬ ‭NIV‬‬

You Are Loved.

You are loved today, tomorrow and will be loved every day until your death and then beyond into eternity.

Nothing can separate you from God’s love. 

Not fear.

Not shame.

Not worry.

Not finances.

Not circumstances.

Not the rules of men.

Because of Jesus you can live in the glorious freedom of being a cherished child of God.

Are you?

On Being Grateful

For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.”    

Romans‬ ‭1‬:‭21‬ NIV

There are two things that will keep your thinking clear and your hearts filled with God’s divine love today giving God glory and giving God thanks.

You can know God and still get stuck in a mental tornado of worry and fear.

When you make gratitude and worship your daily bread and fortifying your spiritual life with His Word, He becomes the calm in the midst of the storm and the eye of the tornado.

He becomes the safe place you can run to and rest untouched by the winds of trial whipping around you.

Jesus defeated all sin and rose from the grave unleashing His power for you. His triumph secures your freedom from all fear.

It is the difference between enduring and embracing your life. In the middle of trials and stress, it is choosing to be present and aware of God’s goodness.

It is focusing on what you have instead of dwelling on what you are afraid of losing.

What are you grateful for today?

I am thankful for you.

On Hope

“Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.  His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.”         

2 Peter 1:2-3 NIV

God’s divine power through Jesus has given you everything you need to live the life God has given you.

To the call He has placed upon your life.

That doesn’t mean it will be easy.  

If it was easy, you wouldn’t need God’s power to do it.

You will need Him. 

You will need His power to keep going in spite of the obstacles, the setbacks, the failures, and the frustrations you are facing.

Good thing you have Him. 

The promise is yours.

Grace and peace are yours in abundance.

Anchor your hope on His word and live fearlessly the beautiful life before you.

On Being Brave

You don’t have to be brave unless you are facing something that requires it.

Being brave means that you are facing something that requires more than a step of faith, it requires a walk of faith.

It means not making your decisions based on what is but on what can be. 

Being brave means getting up every morning and keeping your word when you don’t want to. Stating your boundaries and holding to them even when you don’t feel like it. Trusting God for the impossible.

Choosing to believe the truth instead of giving into the lies.

That is being brave.

“I’ll be with you. I won’t give up on you; I won’t leave you. Strength! Courage!”

Joshua 1:9 MSG

Keep going.
Keep believing.
Be brave.

On Understanding

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;” 
Proverbs 3:5 NIV

Your understanding is made of what you know, what you have learned, what you have been taught and tucked into your back pocket as experience. In the other pocket, you have stuffed the disappointments, the failures, and the fears of how other people’s choices will impact your life.

It is easy and natural to lean on what you know and on what you understand.

I want to challenge you to let go of what you know and lean on what God knows. What He sees.

You only know what is happening to you and can see only what is before you. He sees the whole picture and every person involved now or in the future. God knows what is really going on and nothing is hidden from Him.

Instead of spending your energy worrying about what you can’t control or stressing about what you can’t do, run to God.

Wrap yourself up in the truth of His unfailing love for you and hide there.

While you are there, take a moment to ask Him to show you His understanding of the situation, to see it from His perspective.

Lean hard into His love, His faithfulness, and ask for His wisdom for today.

Do the next right thing and leave the rest to Him.

Take it one day at a time and He will guide you.

He will show you how to walk forward one step at a time according to His truth.