Even There

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“If I ride the wings of the morning, if I dwell by the farthest oceans,
even there your hand will guide me, and your strength will support me.”
Psalm 139: 9-10

Where is your “even there“?

That place that you don’t think God can reach.

That place you think God can’t change.

That place that you don’t believe God can help.

No matter how difficult or dark your situation, Jesus can guide you out and give you the strength to do it.

Jesus will guide you out- follow Him one step at a time, one day at a time.

There is no place that God can’t reach, heal and restoreeven there.

Vulnerable​ Desperation

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“Desperate, I throw myself on you: you are my God! Hour by hour I place my days in your hand, safe from the hands out to get me.”
Psalm 31:14, 15 MSG
You are desperate when you have run out of options and have done all you can with what you have and come up wanting.
You are desperate when you realize you have no control. No control over how others react. No control over what others think. No control over what others choose.
Desperation feels horrid. It feels scary.
And yet desperation drives us to our knees.
It drives us to an honest place where we admit we have no power and no actual control.
It is the realization that we are impotent to procure any real change, unable to bring about that which we desire.
When we have nothing left, we have everything to gain.
Why? Because that is when we throw ourselves on the mercy of God and admit the truth that we are human and not small gods. We are mortal and God is the immortal, all-powerful, omniscient God.
It is actually the safest place to be when we feel the most vulnerable.
When you are just surviving hour by hour- you find God is walking with you minute by minute.
“…for He [God] Himself has said, I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. [I will] not, [I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let [you] down(relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!]”
Hebrews 13:5 AMP
If you are in a desperate place right now, throw yourself on God, because you are in good hands when you are in His hands.
Are you in a desperate place? 
What can I pray for you? 
What does walking with God minute by minute look like to you right now? 

Challenge & Change

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God will use today’s challenges to give you the skills you need for tomorrow’s assignment.

Look to Jesus to guide you through it and help you navigate all the way to the other side of it. Don’t give up halfway through. Storms do not last forever but the lessons you could learn from them will.

Consider it a sheer gift, friends, when tests and challenges come at you from all sides. You know that under pressure, your faith-life is forced into the open and shows its true colors. So don’t try to get out of anything prematurely. Let it do its work so you become mature and well-developed, not deficient in any way.”
‭‭James‬ ‭1:2-4‬ ‭MSG‬‬

It doesn’t matter where it’s coming from, God will use It to get you going in the right direction.

God will use whatever opposition is coming at you as an opportunity to grow your faith and character.

Let Him.

What is God using your current challenge to develop in you?

Change

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Change doesn’t occur without courage.

It takes a special kind of stubbornness to start a new thing in your life, to change the course of it. A stubbornness to keep going against the odds and swim against the current.

Life in Christ means that you are being called upon to be a pioneer. He is calling you to be the first in your family to stay married, to break the cycle of unhealthy habits or to break the cycle of emotional or physical abuse.

But you need to stick it out, staying with God’s plan so you’ll be there for the promised completion. It won’t be long now, he’s on the way; he’ll show up most any minute. But anyone who is right with me thrives on loyal trust; if he cuts and runs, I won’t be very happy. But we’re not quitters who lose out. Oh, no! We’ll stay with it and survive, trusting all the way.”

‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭10:32-39‬ ‭MSG‬‬

God is asking you to be a change-maker and to be stubborn about it.

Be stubborn about your goals but flexible about your methods. Jesus never did a miracle the same way. Each one was different and unique.

Be creative, use what God has given you and fight for the change you need in your life.

Change worth having is worth fighting for.

Go ahead – be stubborn and courageous today.

Habits that Sabotage

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We all have old habits that we want to get rid of. We have had those habits for so long that we do them without even thinking about it.

However, there is a particular old habit that Jesus is more concerned about than the one you are thinking of.

It is a habit that belongs to your old nature:  you desire to get your way in everything and work to make sure that your way happens.

It IS human nature.

But my friend, you have a new nature in Christ.

You have been recreated in Him – The old has gone, the new has come.

“Since Jesus went through everything you’re going through and more, learn to think like him. Think of your sufferings as a weaning from that old sinful habit of always expecting to get your own way. Then you’ll be able to live out your days free to pursue what God wants instead of being tyrannized by what you want.”

‭‭1 Peter‬ ‭4:1-2‬ ‭MSG‬‬

But old habits die hard.

Those habits are sabotaging your freedom to live in your new nature.

When we struggle, we think it is because God doesn’t love us. In reality, it might be that He loves you so much that He will use the stressful opportunity at hand to break an old nature habit.

It starts with your thinking.

Ask Jesus to help you change your mind about suffering, breaking habits and the ability to be free to do His will, His way in everything you do.

“Then you’ll be able to live out your days free to pursue what God wants instead of being tyrannized by what you want.”

Out with the old, in the with new.

It’s not by your power, it’s by His.

My friend, I am praying that today you will break free from the mental habits that are sabotaging your freedom in Christ and that the suffering you are experiencing will break  the power of it.  God’s grace is sufficient. God’s love is unending. God’s strength will get you through.

Living Forgiven

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“and then a total life-change through the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed in His name to all nations”

Luke 24:47 MSG

There is no greater sense of purpose than accepting God’s power to make a 180-degree turn and change.

This doesn’t just happen once.

It isn’t reserved only for “the first time” you recognize you are in need of salvation but is a privileged right of every child of God, no matter how long (or how little) you have let Jesus love you.

It is the ONE thing that keeps your relationship with God thriving and alive- asking for forgiveness.

Get before God today and lay down all that is holding you back.

Every day.
Once a week.
Once a month.
Once a year.
Whatever it takes.

The more the better.

One of the reasons I need to go away by myself for a couple of days a year.  I have learned that I need the time and space to search my heart, to be real before God, to mourn my own weaknesses, to own my mistakes and get the neglected areas of my heart right with God.

Be brave.

I love the quote that says “if you don’t like where you are at, change it. You are not a tree”.

No, you are not a tree, in Christ, you are a child of God.

What do you need to lay down before the cross?

How is your heart? It is cluttered and clogged?

When was the last time you made time to spend time with God and ask Him to cleanse your soul?

Now is a good time.

Grave Clothes

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Jesus said to them, “Take off the grave clothes and let him go.”

John‬ ‭11‬:‭43-44‬ NIV

Lazarus was dead. His body wrapped tightly in grave clothes and laid to rest. The world had already moved on, the end of the story already written. It was over.

But the story was not over for God.

Just when Mary and Martha thought that it was too late, Jesus came and did the most unexpected thing: He raised Lazarus from the dead. He had someone roll away the stone and then called him out.

In one of the most remarkable passages of Scripture, Jesus speaks to death and it is defied. It is powerless before the commanding Word of the Son of God.

You may think that your story has already been written.

That it is over.

That where you are right now is where you will always be.

That your usefulness, your marriage, your ministry, your job, your purpose, your hopes lay dead and lifeless at your feet.

Jesus still defies death. You may think the story is over but God doesn’t.

He will call life from death and unbind the grave clothes that cling.

He will call your name, remind you who you are and whose you are.

He will change the ending. 

He will resurrect relationships, restore callings, redefine life as you know it and move you into the light.

The story of Lazarus is more than an example of a miracle, it is a proclamation of the power of Jesus to raise the dead things in us and a reminder to us today that all death means nothing in the light of His love.

When fear rises up to tell you that your story is already over, begin to loudly proclaim that in Christ your story has only just begun.