Trust God

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”
‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭3:5-6‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Whatever today brings, I want to remind you to trust God in it.

Trust that He has your present provided for. Jesus will give you what you need when you need it to deal with what is happening right now.

Trust that He will heal your past. There is no sin stronger than the blood of Jesus and there is no hurt His love can’t heal.

Trust that He has your future in the palm of His hand. Jesus is preparing a place for you and preparing you for the place. Stressing about it helps no one. Rest in Him and wait.

Take a deep breath and fix your eyes on Jesus. 

Trust Jesus.

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.

Prayer

“The first thing I want you to do is pray. Pray every way you know how, for everyone you know.”
‭‭1 Timothy‬ ‭2:1-2 ‭MSG‬‬

Prayer doesn’t have to be eloquent to be powerful.

It doesn’t have to be lengthy to have consequence.

You don’t have to get the words right for God to hear you.

You just need to do it.

Pray.

Every way you know-how, for everyone you know.

It isn’t a test to pass or a class to take, it is prayer.

There is no wrong way to pray, just talk to God.

The power of prayer is that it connects you with a powerful God who loves you so much that He took care of all that hinders you from connecting to Him. Every fear, doubt, stumble, mistake, misstep or mindset that separates you from God, Jesus took on the cross.

Jesus experienced every judgment, every unjustice, neglect or wrong done to you by others.

This is how you can be unhindered in prayer for others and honest in prayer for yourself. He died to give you permission to talk freely with the Holy One.

Let no excuse stop you today from talking to and listening to Him today.

Believe Anyway

I want to encourage you today that no matter how dark the situation is, believe that God can do something in it anyway.

I want to challenge you to dare to trust Him in the desert – there is a promised land and you are on your way to it.

My prayer for you is that like Abraham you will decide to live today not based on what you can’t do but on what God can do through you.

God freely gives you His power to sustain you to walk, to love, to care and to be fully alive even when you may feel mostly dead inside.

“Abraham was first named ‘father’ and then became a father because he dared to trust God to do what only God could do: raise the dead to life, with a word make something out of nothing.

When everything was hopeless, Abraham believed anyway, deciding to live not on the basis of what he saw he couldn’t do but on what God said he would do.”

‭‭Romans‬ ‭4:17-18‬ ‭MSG‬‬

Long before Abraham saw the fruit of the promise, he believed God anyway. Though everything in his life seemed to indicate otherwise, he lived his life, every day, not looking at the impossibility of the promise but in the possibility of God.

I am sure that there were times that Abraham barely believed. I know that there were days that he was only holding on to a bare thread of hope…but he held on.

Hold on, my friend, you may only have a thread of hope, but in Christ, that thread is stronger than what you face and will hold against that which you fear.

A Small Thing

Wednesday

David believed that God could use a small thing to conquer a big enemy.

“Reaching into his bag and taking out a stone, he slung it and struck the Philistine on the forehead”

1 Samuel 17:49 NIV

It is not the size of what you are facing but the size of your faith in God.

God has chosen you.  He walks with you.

You can fearlessly face the giant before you because the Almighty God is within you.

You already have what you need.

You don’t have to change who you are.

God will use the small thing you hold to do the big thing you have been praying for.

What small thing has God placed in your hand?

What is God asking you to do with it?

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.

Graceful

Tuesday

“It was God giving me the work to do and God giving me the energy to do it.”

‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭15:10-11‬ ‭MSG

It is a defining moment when you realize that the work of God doesn’t depend on you but on Him. It is HIS WORK. But you and I get to join in on it.

We get to be a part of the divine work of God on this earth when we love others.

When we honor them.

When we leave the judgment to God and extend grace where needed.

When we listen to the cry of the hurting and reach out to those who feel abandoned.

It’s our job to love them and God’s job to heal them.

And all of it is because of God’s unending grace.

We don’t have to figure out how God’s grace works, we just have to extend it lavishly on a hurting and broken world. 

A Safe Place to Hide

Tuesday

Sometimes you just need a place to hide for a while.

Something happens and you feel vulnerable and wounded.

You want to crawl back under the covers and not face the world.

There is a place to hide in for a while that is a healing place.

A safe place.

And that place is God, Himself.

“For you are my hiding place;

you protect me from trouble.

You surround me with songs of victory.”

Psalm 32:7 NLT

He is a place of refuge where gentle songs of victory, thanksgiving, and praise echo all around you.

Today, Jesus invites you into the Presence of God and says to you, “Hide here– I Am the refuge in your storm”.

Instead of crawling back in bed, crawl under God’s covering of unconditional love in Christ Jesus.

Let Him embrace you and hold you today.

Allow His love to heal your soul and listen as He surrounds you with songs of triumph.

The storm will not win – He will.

 

 

 

The Impossible Dream

Monday

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 dream again, say yes.

 

What is the Point?

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“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?