“And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.”Philippians 4:19 NIV
“I pray that from His glorious, unlimited resources He will empower you with inner strength through His Spirit.”Ephesians 3:16 NLT
You have His strength to love, to walk, to work, to hold on to hope and let go of fear.
You have His grace to cover your mistakes and feed your compassion.
You have His joy to see the ordinary beauty of humanity that is all around you.
You have His kindness to be gentle with those who are closest to you.
You have His vision to see others as He does and love them appropriately.
You are empowered to live loved as a child of God and do His will on earth as it is in heaven.
Not by your strength but by His.
Not from your limited resources, but from His unlimited and glorious resources.
The important thing about goals is having the right goals.
“I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 3:14 NIV
Don’t waste your life going after goals to make yourself more comfortable.
Go after Jesus– His love, His agenda and His goals for your life (which has more to do with who you are than what you look like and giving more than getting more).
Life following Jesus is not comfortable or easy – it is unique, unexpected and adventurous.
At the end of your life, you may or may not have human praise and awards but if you choose the goal of letting God transform you with His love, you will have rich relationships, miraculous moments and the most important thing you can have with you as you step into eternity – Jesus.
He is the prize.
Go after Jesus and make your relationship with Him the main goal of your life.
The rest of your goals will fall in line.
May you clearly hear His voice, boldly follow His guidance and passionately pursue His heart in all things today.
“If anyone has ears to hear, let them hear.” Mark 4:23 NIV
When life gets loud, stressful and fear-filled, listening gets difficult.
With all there is to listen to for up to date information and then all the things we do to distract us from it all, it can be difficult to hear what God is saying to us.
Jesus is always communicating with you. He is always speaking truth to you.
Today is a day to listen.
To quiet everything.
To step back and breathe.
To quiet the stress, the worries, the distractions, the screens, social media, or anything else that is draining your ability to hear Jesus.
Jesus is speaking to you and He has something that He wants you to hear clearly.
I am asking Jesus to give you ears to hear and to prepare a quiet place for you to receive His word for you today.
What is creating the most internal noise in your life right now?
What do you need to do to quiet down the external noise to be able to hear God’s voice better?
What is Jesus saying to you today?
“Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.”
1 John 3:18 NIV
The Greek word for “love” here is agape. It is the description of God. A love that gives generously, cares first, forgives first, extends endless second chances and never gives up. It is the word that describes who God is: uncontainable, unrelenting, unending, unchanging LOVE.
Love is heaven’s greatest treasure and earth’s most desperate need.
It is why Jesus came to earth. He brought Himself, then took upon Himself what separates us from receiving this love. Then He rose again to make it available for all who would receive Him.
God has put people in your life that need to see His love in action.
Let God love through you.
Love them authentically, without expecting anything back.
Find a need and fill it for them.
Forgive first, not because they deserve it.
Give them a second chance.
Don’t give up on them and ask God to show you how He sees them.
Love founded in truth and put to action is the most powerful force in the world.
Who has God given you to love?
How are you going to love them today?
One day when my oldest son was about 11 years old, he walked into our bedroom with his shoulders slumped and said, “The charger is broken- it won’t charge the laptop and it just died”.
My husband brought the laptop into our bedroom and first thing he checked all the connections on the cord. A few minutes later, I noticed that he had put the laptop down and didn’t seem too worried about it.
“Did you fix it?” I asked.
“Oh, yea I did”, he said. “The connection just needed to be cleaned. It was just dirty. After I cleaned it, it connected just fine and now it is charging.”
It was that simple, a clogged connection.
Your connection point to God is your heart. It is where the power of God fills you and the grace of God heals you. Your heart gets clogged and dirty from the wear and tear of life, with bits of small lies believed or big judgments perceived getting in the crevices. These days it may be getting clogged by fear as you read Covid-19 headlines and news reports.
Your heart needs to be cleaned often.
Fear and anxiety cleaned out so that you can connect fully to faith, to hope and to courage.
Pray this prayer as many times as you need to:
Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me and know my anxious thoughts;
And see if there be any [n]hurtful way in me,
And lead me in the everlasting way.
Psalm 139:23-24 NASB
It is amazing what a difference it makes when your heart is clear and your connection with God is restored to full power.
What is clogging your connection to God today?
What is filling your heart today?
“We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield.”
Psalm 33:20 NIV
The Hebrew word used for “wait” in Psalm 33:20 implies being tied to or binding yourself to something.
For me, the picture of a seatbelt comes to mind.
When I was a teenager, I went to the movies with a friend. I met him at his house, climbed into his truck and buckled myself in. We drove down the street and then he stopped. He told me that we were going to take a shortcut and we were going to go off-roading. He checked my seatbelt, put his truck in four-wheel drive and turned toward the ravine. I was excited, slightly terrified and said, “Let’s go for it!” I have never appreciated a seatbelt more. It held me in my seat on the sharp inclines and steep declines, over the rocky bumps and through the unlevel dry river beds. We arrived at the theater with plenty of time, but to be honest, I remember the journey there more than the movie we saw.
Following Jesus is more like off-roading than driving on the freeway.
He takes you to new places, asks you to grow out of your comfort zones and challenges you to take the road not traveled.
Today Jesus may be calling you to go off-road, or like Peter: out of the boat.
When Peter saw Jesus, he asked Him if he could join Jesus out there on the water. Jesus said yes and Peter went over the side of the boat:
“Yes, come,” Jesus said. So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus. But when he saw the strong wind and the waves, he was terrified and began to sink. “Save me, Lord!” he shouted.”
Matthew 14:29-30 NLT
“Streams of the Desert”:
“Once he had stepped out of the boat, the waves were none of his business”.
– Streams of the Desert
Peter’s job wasn’t to walk on water but it was to keep his eyes on Jesus.
As we all try to navigate the unknown future that is daily being created by the Covid-19 Virus, being stuck at home may be our new “off-road”. Having nowhere to go may be harder because you can’t run from the problems there. I can guarantee that God wants to take this time to grow your faith, your prayer life, and your relationships.
Maybe today, God is asking you to reconcile a relationship that has been broken or work on one in your home. Now is the time to be brave. Get close to God, put your faith-belt on and tell the truth. It’s not going to be easy but you are not alone in it.
What is God challenging you to trust Him in today?
Who do you need the faith to reach out to?
“The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.”
Galatians 5:6 NIV
Q. What counts more than money, things, activities, entertainment or even a clean house?
A. Faith expressing itself through love.
It is like having a keychain packed full of keys and on it is this really little one. You know that one random key that you are not sure what it is for but you are afraid to throw it out in case you need it.
What if on the packed keychain of your life, you find out that there is a key that unlocks a vault where all the richest treasures are stored?
That key is your faith in Jesus expressed through love.
Jesus told His disciples in Luke 17:6 that they didn’t need to have big faith. He said that if they put into action the little faith they did have, mountains would move.
My friend, it’s not the size of your faith but the size of your God that moves mountains.
All you need is a tiny bit of faith to take the first step or a crumb of hope to get you through it.
All you need to do is see a little bit of the dream Jesus has for you, then add love and put it into action. Take a little bit of trusting in His power, add a pinch of faith and do that something that comes next – the next right thing?
When you are at that place where it seems a positive change is more like turning the Titanic than turning a key, call out to Jesus.
If you need faith for your situation, He will let you use His.
If you need to remember the dream, ask God, He dreamt it first for you.
If you need monumental hope, He is the God of all hope.
Take the little you have right now and put it in action.
What will you do today with the little faith you have?
How will you express it through love?
“The whole point of what we’re urging is simply love —love uncontaminated by self-interest and counterfeit faith, a life open to God.”
1 Timothy 1:5 MSG
The whole point is to love others and live your life open to God.
To simply love and simply be loved.
To love God and love people.
It is simple but certainly not easy.
Self-interest complicates it. It is difficult to simply love others when your innate human desire to self-protect kicks in.
It is easier to go with the flow of human nature than to intentionally choose God’s way.
It is easier to hedge your bets against hurt than it is to be vulnerable and reach out.
It is easier to build your case of good reasons to disconnect than it is to lay them down and trust Jesus.
Going down that road, you will find yourself isolated and self-righteous instead of connected and invested.
A life open to God means that you recognize when human nature hijacks the work God wants to do in you and through you.
Sin complicates it, brokenness contaminates it, unforgiveness taints it.
The cross simplifies it.
The only way to deal with your human nature is to take it to the cross of Jesus.
The place He laid down His life and took up your sin.
He took your brokenness there so he could offer you wholeness here.
He took the bitterness of unforgiveness there, so he could offer you the sweetness of grace here.
The cross is where you can lay down your nature and freely take up his.
Be set free to be who God created you to be by simply loving those who God brings to you- they need it as much as you do.
What do you need to take to the cross today?
What does living your life open to God mean to you?
Who, in your world, desperately needs your love?
“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 or relax My hold on you! Assuredly not!” Hebrews 13:5 Amplified Version
Jesus is bigger than your situation.
He will not leave you without support.
He will not leave you helpless.
He will not relax His hold on you.
He will make a way where there seems to be no way.
I am praying for you today.