Living in the Shadow of His Love

b21380f4231277992e4d9582c22cc11a

“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.””

‭‭Psalm‬ ‭91:1-2‬ ‭NIV‬‬

It can be exhausting to find rest.

If you look to a person to provide rest, a safe place to hide, a security in an insecure world – they will fail you because they are fallible human beings. At their best, they are as broken as you are and looking to you to find rest.

If you look to a job or career as a place of safety, security, or fulfillment you may have seasons of it but economies change, companies change and you change. They are at best a temporary place of financial security.

Even if you look to the church to be a place of rest, it can fail you because the church is made of people. The Word says to find rest in God, not the church. You go to church to learn, grow, give, serve, bless, be blessed and so on.

Go to Jesus for your salvation, your refuge, your direction, strength, peace, and abundant life.

The church is only there to point you to Jesus.

The only true place of refuge, security, peace and rest is in the shadow of the Almighty God. What does that mean? It means that God wants you to stick close to Him, so close He can put His arm around you. So close, the shadow of His unending grace covers you.

Jesus came to clear the way for you to experience your relationship with God like this.

He is your refuge.
He is your fortress.
He is your Father and you can trust Him.

He is your place of rest, not just when everything is going good but when everything is falling apart.

He is your refuge when you are tired of fighting the battle.

He is your fortress when the battle is too much to take.

My friend, whatever today brings – may you dwell in the shelter of the Most High God and stick so close that you live in the shadow of His love. 

What Do You Need Today?

rest-10-8-15

Life is unpredictable.

Every day brings the unexpected and unplanned for.

The good news is that you have Jesus. He is here to guide you through it. He is your Shepherd.  He sees ahead, helps you walk through, takes you where you need to go and protects you along the way. Dangers may loom, predators may attack but you are not alone.

“GOD, my shepherd! I don’t need a thing.  You have bedded me down in lush meadows, you find me quiet pools to drink from. True to your word, you let me catch my breath and send me in the right direction.”

Psalm 23:1-3 MSG

Are you tired and worn out?

Jesus has quiet waters to restore your tired soul. Quiet means still, waters are refreshing. When was the last time you just let all around you become quiet and refreshed your spirit?

Is your soul starved?

Jesus will lead you to green pastures that will feed your hungry heart. He has made you with intentional and unique ways of refilling yourself when you’re empty. When was the last time you spent time doing what fills your soul?

Are you feeling lost?

God will guide you to the right paths that will bring God glory. He has created you on purpose for a purpose and will guide you in it. When was the last time you asked Him to show you the right path for this season? Often we continue in an old path from an old season until we look around and say, “I’m not in the right place”. Jesus is a present God who will give you updated guidance on the right path you are meant to be on.

He will lead you through the hills, the valleys, the deserts, and all the while, in the middle of it all, will provide a place for you to rest, refill, refocus in Him.

Jesus is the good Shepherd and He will lead you to what you really need today. 

What do you need?

New Grooves

change-your-mind-picture-quote

“We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.” – Albert Einstein

Jesus knows how your mind goes, so your life goes.

He also knows that you have years of pathways laid and that your most frequent thoughts have deep familiar grooves they travel in.

What are you thinking?

What are your most frequent thoughts?

I’m not talking about the power of positive thinking, I’m talking about the power of Christ-like thinking.

In fact, there is an incredible statement in
1 Corinthians 2:16 NIV: “But we have the mind of Christ.”

That doesn’t mean that we are robots who all think the same way, it means that Jesus has given you access to His mind and how He thinks by the power of the Holy Spirit.

You have your own mind and think your own thoughts.

Jesus will help you make new grooves and new pathways as you learn to follow and trust Him.

“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.”

‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:8 ‭MSG‬‬

When your mind is stuck on repeat and it is filling you with fear instead of faith, ask Jesus for help. Ask Him what He thinks about the situation. Ask Him to show you what He thinks about you.

When you are wrapped in the compassionate presence of your Savior, he will help you turn from the old roads of thinking and make new pathways based on God’s truth.

Make His way of thinking your new groove this year. 

Right Now

bible-versus-trusting-god-1570730530

Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, God’s love cuts right through the business of life and breathes into you the very heart of it- His heart, His LIFE.

God’s love for you is for right now. Not later. Now.

“For right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation:

Trust steadily in God,
hope unswervingly,
love extravagantly.
And the best of the three is love.”

1 Corinthians 13:13 MSG

Don’t wait for tomorrow to trust.
Trust today.

Don’t wait until tomorrow to hope.
Hope today.

Don’t wait until tomorrow to love.
Love today.

Steadily.

Unswervingly.

Extravagantly.

Right now.

You Are Not Rejected

made-by-god

There are other moments of rejection that give you soul scars. Moments that become memories that hide in the silence and shadows of your heart. They feed into the fears of “not worthy” and enable the core insecurities of “not enough”.

God’s Word brings light to the shadows and His voice to the silent places in your heart.

Jesus came to bring to completion the Word spoken in Isaiah:

“For I have chosen you and will not throw you away. Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.”
‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭41:9,10‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Jesus came to complete it,
to reclaim you,
to reconcile you to God,
has chosen you,
pursued you,
paid for you,
cherishes you,
will not abandon you.

Whispers of rejection will remind you of past rejections. They will taint every relationship and interaction you have.

You fear rejection but Jesus came to empty that word of its crippling power.

He is the God who says to you:

“I have chosen you and have not rejected you.” (NIV‬‬ version)

“I’ve picked you. I haven’t dropped you. Don’t panic. I’m with you.” ‭‭‬ ‭(MSG‬‬ version)

“You are My servant, I have chosen you and have not cast you away: Fear not, for I am with you;” (‭NKJV‬‬ version)

Jesus will whisper this truth to you every day, in every way He can until you will believe it, embrace it and live in it.

YOU ARE HIS.
YOU ARE CHOSEN.

Reread if necessary.

Happy New Year!

consistency1

I stopped making New Years Resolutions a few years ago. It has been a relief to not put the focus on myself and instead focus on one new thing God has given me to do.

Where Jesus guides, He provides. When He gives you something to do, He will provide a way for you to do it.

“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

That doesn’t mean it will be easy.  If it was easy, you wouldn’t need God’s help and power.

You will need Him. You will have to choose to keep going in spite of all the obstacles, all the setbacks, all the failures, and the frustrations.

You are going to have to fight for it and start over again and again with His help.

Sometimes the most important things in life are not the biggest things – they are the small things that will make a big difference and they so easily slip through the cracks of a busy life.

So, my challenge for you this year: don’t make a New Year’s Resolution list.

Instead, be resolutely committed to being simply and wholeheartedly faithful to do one thing that God is asking you to do.

What is one thing Jesus is asking you to do this year?

Keep it simple.

Keep it consistent.

Find a way to stay faithful.

Focused on God

169881-max-lucado-quote-god-s-present-is-his-presence-his-greatest-gift

In our multi-tasking mounting pressure culture to juggle your life AND plan your future well, there is a prayer whispered from the heart of a king that reveals to us the secret to it.

He was the former bear wrestler, lion chaser, singing sheep keeper that faced the giant and beheaded him. This king who was the warrior worshipper prayed for this:

“I’m asking GOD for one thing, only one thing: To live with him in his house my whole life long.

I’ll contemplate his beauty; I’ll study at his feet.

That’s the only quiet, secure place in a noisy world, The perfect getaway, far from the buzz of traffic.”

Psalm 27:4-5 MSG

It is the secret that David shouted out and the source that fueled his life.

He knew that there was ONE THING needed above all others: to live WITH God every day. To enjoy Him, learn from Him and have a safe house to escape to when the world goes nuts.

David lived in the palace but longed for the Temple.

The ONE THING thing David longed for, Jesus made a reality. Paul said in 1 Corinthians 6:19,  “Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God?”

Because of the death and resurrection of Jesus, you are able to experience this kind of relationship with God every day, wherever you are and whatever you are doing.

May your day be rich and focused on this One Thing and may all the rest of life be filled by it.