Living a Risky Life

“The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him.”   Nahum 1:7 NIV

Every time you step out in faith in Jesus, it is a risk.

Being faithful to Jesus may look like being a failure to the world.

He may ask you to leave what you know, sacrifice whatever is needed, and embrace a temporary difficulty for the hope of a future promise.

Know that even though the risk seems great, a life lived in faith in the Son of God means that every cross He asks you to bear leads to a resurrection to a new kind of life you have never lived before.

This is the prayer I am whispering over you today, “Jesus, take care of my friends as they step out in faith. Thank you that they are trusting you as they face risk. Reward them with courage and vision and do what only You can do – the impossible in them and through them. In Your Name, Amen”

Faith

So that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men (human philosophy) but in the power of God.”    

1 Corinthians 2:5 AMP

When your faith rests in the wisdom of man, it will falter because at it’s best, it is a human attempt to explain divine power.

When your faith rests in your own feelings, it will surge and wane like the waves of the sea.

When your faith rests on your past experience, it can morph into whatever you have experienced, good or bad.

When your faith rests in the Son of God it is like a solid rock upon which the waves of emotion break, the wisdom of men shatters and He becomes the foundation of truth that gives your experience perspective.

Don’t make your decisions based on how you feel, what others say, or what happened in the past.

Ask Jesus to lead you and He will. The One who died for you rose again and sits at the right hand of God will show you the way forward.

He is bigger than your fears, knows what to do with your worries, and is working behind the scenes to bless you.

May today be filled with the promise of the finished work of Jesus and bring you to a new level of faith that is not tossed by emotions but anchored in God’s unchanging love for you.

The Ludicrous Dream

“By faith, barren Sarah was able to become pregnant, old woman as she was at the time, because she believed the One who made a promise would do what he said.”  Hebrews 11:11 MSG

We are born dreamers.

As children, we see that world around us and dream about being a part of it.

We dream about what our place in the world will be, what we will do, and who we might become.

The dreams revolve around us and what it will mean for us if those dreams come true.

As we grow up, there are some dreams that hold onto us more than we hold onto them.

It is those dreams that feel devastating when they shatter and remain unfulfilled.

We put them in the realm of impossible.

When the Lord told Abraham that Sarah would give birth, she overheard it and laughed (Genesis 18:11).  She laughed not because she thought it was funny but because she thought it ludicrous. The dream of having children probably died when she was in her 60s or 70s.  She had accepted her barrenness.

My friend, God often challenges what you have already accepted.

He will speak a word to you that seems impossible.

Something that seems ludicrous.

Something that you gave up on and now He is asking you to pick up again.

He is asking you to dream again but this time to dream it differently.

How? By placing your hope not in what the dream will do for you but in what God wants to do through you.

God asked Sarah to dream again. She knew she could not make it happen, she already tried. But somewhere deep inside she chose to trust God to do the impossible.

My friend, put your hope in God today.

And when He calls you to believe in the ludicrous dream again, say yes. 

Expansive Trust

There came a man who walked the earth, spoke truth to all who would listen, healed broken bodies and restored broken souls to God. It was His love that breathed life into the first lungs of man and His word that drove the darkness and chaos back before that.

He came to the earth He created for one purpose: to perfect love. The word perfect here doesn’t mean flawless as much as it means complete. Completed completeness. This love that bled when the lash tore open His back and wood of the cross dug into it, persevered through the unendurable physical and spiritual pain of the cross until He could utter the truth, “it is finished”. 

This love has been made completely complete. The debt of sin has been paid and the great chasm between God and man has been crossed.

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

1 John 4:18 NIV

When fear rises up to dismantle my faith or weave it’s tentacles around my feet to trip me up, I must remember this fact: I have nothing to fear. 

Christ took my punishment completely so that I could let His love complete me. 

Are you letting His love complete you?

Are you letting His love in?

Today, Jesus is holding out His love to you and asking you to take it, make it yours and start living in the expansive truth of it today.

Take it.

This is for you.

The Main Goal

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. 

How I Now Live

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 

Galatians 2:20 NIV

Your life as a Jesus follower is not about what you are capable of doing, it’s about what Jesus is capable of doing through you.

Your body is His to use, your mind is His to fill, your heart is His to heal.

His mission is your mission, His vision is your vision, His power is your power.

This life is no longer yours, it is His life lived through you.

I have learned that Jesus will take all the life you are “able” to give Him and live through it.

My friend, surrender all you can today, then all you can tomorrow.

Jesus will receive it with joyous love.

He will embrace it with strong arms of grace.

He will take you to places of faith you couldn’t have even imagined the first moment that you surrendered your life and chose to live by faith in the Son of God.

You have more life now than you did then.

Today is a good day to surrender all the life you have to Jesus… again.

Unless you have never done this, in that case, today is the perfect day to surrender your whole life Jesus for the first time.

Are you living by faith in the Son of God or faith in yourself?

What do you have to surrender?

How does the Son of God want to live through you today?

Fearless Obedience

Fearless obedience is not about waiting until you have no fear to obey, it is about trusting God to be bigger than what you fear.

To go after all God has for you, talent is optional but faith is indispensable. 

“For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.”
‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭41:13‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Every time you use whatever faith you have (whether it be little or large) to step out in obedience, you are trusting God to walk with you every step of the way.

Whatever Jesus is asking of you today,  He will give you the strength to do it.

What does it mean for you walk in fearless obedience today?

Ready

Faith is trust.

Striving is not the solution.
Stressing out is not the solution.
Surrender is the solution.

Surrender yourself to God.
Surrender your situation to God.
Surrender your fears to God.

This isn’t about giving up but it is very much about giving over of yourself into God’s hands.

Not because you understand how God can work a miracle but by believing He can work a miracle.

Surrender is about trusting Him to be who He is – your loving Father. 

Since God assured us, “I’ll never let you down, never walk off and leave you, we can boldly quote, God is there, ready to help; I’m fearless no matter what. 

Who or what can get to me?”
‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭13:5-6‬ ‭MSG‬‬

Surrender your fears and embrace faith in your loving heavenly Father who sent His Son to die for you so that He could have you for all of eternity. 

He is faithful.

He will not fail you.

He will not abandon you.

Your Father is here, ready to help.

What do you need help with today?

Heart Purified

“But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.”
‭‭Job‬ ‭23:10‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Your faith is more precious to God than the finest of gold.

Your faith in Jesus will last longer than your job, your goals and your body.  It is the faith born from the eternal life inside of you that sustains you through the trials of the temporary outside life.

When God tests your faith it is to purify it. To clarify it. To clean it from dross and impurities. He will use the smallest irritation or the greatest trial to do it. He does not send the trial but He will use it.

The same fire that destroys wood purifies gold.

God can use the very thing that you feel like is destroying you to purify you.

He will use the disappointment you are experiencing to make the dross of your heart rise to the surface so He can skim it off.

You have a promise here that God knows where you are, what you are going through and that He knows how to use it to do a powerful work in you.

You will come out of it shining.

Hold onto God during this season because He is most certainly holding onto you. 

Do More Than Just Endure Today

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

“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

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

Jesus died and rose again so that you can break the power of old mental habits and create new ones with His power.

When you make gratitude and worship your daily bread you are fortifying your spiritual life and strengthening your mental one.

It is the difference between enduring and embracing your life with Jesus in it.

God knows where you are and what your world looks like.

Replace your worry with worship and fear with gratitude.

Gratitude for what you have instead of dwelling on what you are afraid of losing.

What are you grateful for today?

How will you worship Jesus today?