How You See

Perspective is powerful.

Jesus said how you see the world around you, impacts you:

“Your eyes are windows into your body.  If you open your eyes wide in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light. If you live squinty-eyed in greed and distrust, your body is a dank cellar. If you pull the blinds on your windows, what a dark life you will have!”‭‭

Matthew‬ ‭6:22-23‬ ‭MSG‬‬

How you look at the world around you impacts how you experience the world within you.

Do you see the world and the people in it with wonder and delight or in fear and distrust?

Have you “pulled the blinds” and given up?

If so, you are in a dark place.

Jesus came for you.

He came to unleash heaven’s light and love in you.

He came to heal the hurts and tend the wounds that fester distrust and fear.

He came to restore wonder.

He came to restore you.

What Are You Worried About Today?

What are you worried about today?

“Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down.  It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.

Philippians 4:6-7 MSG

Worry is not meant to be the center of your life.

Worry will keep you distracted and you will miss the small moments of joy that are sent by God to let you know He loves you.

Worry is not meant to be the center of your life, Jesus is. His love for you is a much better rule of life than worry. Love is a better way to make decisions than fear.

Hand over what you are worrying about to Jesus right now.

Put it in God’s capable hands.

Instead of worrying, pray.

Then allow a sense of God’s wholeness to fill your soul.  

Then get busy loving the people He has placed in your life.

What is worry stealing from you today?

Pause the Panic

Monday

“This is your Father you are dealing with, and he knows better than you what you need. With a God like this loving you, you can pray very simply.”
Matthew‬ ‭6:7 MSG

What is causing you to panic right now?

Panic is defined as sudden uncontrollable fear or anxiety.

All kinds of things can cause panic to rise within you and when it does, I am going to ask you to pause.

To wait before you react.

To take deep breath in and out.

To pray and ask God for His perspective.

He is your Father and He knows you. He knows why it is happening and why you are responding to it that way.  He also knows how to lead you down the right path, not just the first one that presents itself. Jesus knows if there is a higher way, a better way or a healthier way to deal with it.

He knows how to calm your heartbeat and clear your mind.

When you go to God with your panic, He will give you the wisdom and guidance you need to deal with it.

Pause the panic and pray.  Your Father in heaven loves you and knows what a one-word prayer like “help” means.

Before You Face the Storm

ThursdJesus stood on the shore alone. He didn’t look for a boat or wait until He found one. He just walked right into the storm and walked on the water.

Today, you may feel like you are facing a storm and looking at an impossible situation.

Good news: your Savior knows how to handle it. He knows how to do impossible things.

22 Immediately Jesus made the disciples get into the boat and go on ahead of him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowd.23 After he had dismissed them, he went up on a mountainside by himself to pray.

Later that night, he was there alone, 24 and the boat was already a considerable distance from land, buffeted by the waves because the wind was against it.

25 Shortly before dawn, Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake.

Matthew 14:22-25

Before you face the storm, get alone with God.  Get to a quiet place so you can hear His words to you:

Before you face the day, get face to face with Me. I will bring you through it. I know the way”.

What Drives Out Fear?

Tuesday

What drives out fear? Love does.

Don’t believe me? Think back to a time when you were in love with somebody. How bold were you? How much hope did you have for the future? Did you do any crazy things with them because you were in love with them?

Right this minute, you are loved with a perfect love from a sinless Savior who sacrificed Himself so that you could live unhindered by fear.

“There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment.”

‭‭1 John‬ ‭4:18‬ ‭NIV‬‬

The word perfect here doesn’t mean flawless, it means complete. It means complete love.  Not a temporary infatuation but a deep developed love that stands the test of time and eternity.

His was a love that bleeds when the lash tore open His back and the splintered wood of the cross dug into it. A love that persevered through the unendurable physical and spiritual pain of the cross until He could utter the truth, “it is finished”.

When fear rises up to dismantle your faith or weave it’s tentacles around your feet to trip you up, you must remember this fact: You have nothing to fear. You are in love. 

Christ took your punishment completely so that you could be immersed in His love and be made whole.

Jesus 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 and it is His love that sets you free to love as freely and completely as you are loved.

What drives fear out?
Love.

The love of Jesus.

Hang your hat on it and get down to the business of loving others with the confident abandon that comes with it.

Faith or Fear?

Tuesday-DW

Are you living today in faith or in fear?

This faith journey with Jesus is just that, a faith journey.

It is not a fear journey.

Faith and fear are both ways to walk into the unknown and I have a secret to tell you – every new day is unknown. You don’t know what will happen. It could go as planned or go completely different. Sometimes better different, sometimes not so much.

Fear holds you back, faith releases you forward.

I’m not suggesting that you ignore your fear or be in denial of it. I’m encouraging you to not let fear decide what you do or don’t do.

Give Jesus all your unknowns and allow Him full access to the places in your heart that are ruled by fear.

Let His love flood in and wash away the fears that are holding you back today.

 

Don’t Miss It

Wednesday

Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with him”.

Philippians‬ ‭3:8‬ ‭NLT

At the end of your life, you may or may not have human praise but if you have gone after a real relationship with Jesus, you will have so much more than that.

You will have rich relationships, miraculous moments, great faith adventures as well as the single most important thing you can have with you as you step into eternity – Jesus Himself.

Don’t waste your life by pursuing goals to make yourself more comfortable, more secure or safer.

Live the life you were created for by pursuing the one goal of knowing Jesus.

Not just to know about Him but to know Him in every area of your life.

Not just to work for Him but to work with Him.

Keep this goal as the top priority and all the other goals will quickly fall into their proper perspective.

Truth

Friday

“..and in truth”.

1 John‬ ‭3‬:‭18‬ NIV

God will never ask you to love someone and lie to them at the same time. 

He does not ask you to avoid the truth or use His love as a cop-out to deal with the truth.

He does not ask you to stay locked in a silent prison of fear while you “act” love out.

Sometimes it is harder to love in truth than it is to love in action. 

Whether that means talking or listening, truth is the only foundation of love. 

Be brave.

What is Weighing on You

Tuesday

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”   ‭‭1 Peter‬ ‭5:7‬ ‭NIV‬‬

When you are focused on what you can’t control and what you are not strong enough to carry, you are captured by the weight of anxiety.

When you are focused on the presence of God and His incomparable love for you, you are captured by the weight of His glory.

He cares for you more than you can comprehend. 

When you are in the middle of a fierce storm feeling out of control and tossed around, you may be asking Jesus, like His disciples did in Mark 4:38, “Do you even care that we are in this storm?” 

The answer is yesHe cares. 

Yes, He knows.

Yes, He can handle it.

The word “cast” in 1 Peter 5:7 is a word picture of holding something very heavy, then throwing it to get it out of your hands.

Jesus can handle whatever you are carrying.

He who has carried the weight of your sin can absolutely carry the weight of your anxiety.

Little Snares

Thursday
“My eyes are ever on the Lord, for only he will release my feet from the snare.”
Psalm 25:15 NIV
Sometimes a small cord of fear becomes a snare that holds you back.
Sometimes a resilient string of hurt traps you from moving forward.
Maybe a trap of bitterness has wrapped itself around your ankle.
And if you don’t acknowledge it, it may become crippling.
Look to the Lord to release you from the snare that is holding you back today.
He is the only one who can heal your heart.
He made it, will remake it, and will continue to bring up the little snares that need to be healed because they hold you back from who you are created to be.
Who are you looking to heal your heart today?
If it is anyone else but Jesus, you will be disappointed and frustrated.