At Your Darkest

But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life.”  –1 Timothy 1:16 NIV

If you are feeling like the worst of sinners right now, run to Jesus.

He came for you.

His arms are wide open.

He has more patience for you than you have for yourself.

He has forgiveness in his grasp and is ready to graciously pour it out to you.

He does not expect you to be perfect.

He expects you to let His love heal you when you are at your darkest.

Your Heart

Some seasons are harder than others.

Sometimes it seems like having a hard heart is easier than feeling the pain of a soft one.

But a heart is meant to feel, not be numb.

Your heart is made to process the pain.

When you harden your heart instead of processing the pain, you lock the pain inside with no way out. 

My friend, don’t harden your heart.

Push through the hard season but don’t do it by hardening your heart.

“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.”

‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭4:23‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Guard your heart, grow your heart and fill your heart.

Don’t just get through today’s struggle, process it.

Feel it, embrace it and let it work all the way through and all the way out.

How is your heart doing today?

Grudges

Holding a grudge clutters the soul with bitterness.

Forgiveness is vital to your soul and it is a journey Jesus wants to walk you through.

It is vital because you are valuable.

And if someone takes unfair advantage of you, use the occasion to practice the servant life. No more tit-for-tat stuff.  Live generously.

‭‭Matthew‬ ‭5:38-42‬ ‭MSG‬‬

God doesn’t deny that bad things happen or that people will take advantage of you but He also doesn’t abandon you to it either.

Jesus is saying that when someone takes advantage of you, give them what you have and move on with your life.  Let it go.  Forgive it.

In this way, you will be living in the abundance of God’s love instead of the famine of your past hurts.

You are not meant to carry the heavy load of resentment and regret.

What resentment or regret is weighing you down?

What grudge is poisoning your soul?

Bring them all to Jesus and lay each one at the foot of the cross. Then, take a deep breath and allow Him to fill the newly evacuated space with the cleansing power of His love.

How Jesus Loves

”Jesus looked at him and loved him.”

Mark 10:22 NIV

Jesus saw the man who was right in front of Him and loved him 

Jesus loved him for who he was right at that moment regardless of the outcome of their relationship.

This is how Jesus loves.

When Jesus looks at you, He loves you.

He loves you for who are right at this moment.

He doesn’t love you for who you may become or only if you will get better.

Jesus loves you.

This love pursues, heals and is what inspires people to love others the way Jesus loves them.

Do you know today that Jesus loves you like this?

How God Tests You.

“The crucible for silver and the furnace for gold, but the Lord tests the heart.”  ‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭17:3‬ ‭NIV

The crucible is a vessel used to melt the silver and gold so the impurities of the precious metal will rise to the top. When it does, the refiner will skim it off.

It is the same with your heart. The Great Refiner will use the hot fires of life to cause the impurities in your heart to be revealed so He can clear them out. In His kindness, He will bring to the surface the things that are holding you back. When He brings it to the surface, it means that you are ready to deal with it. Your job is to stay in His Hand, deal with what comes up (which almost always begins by forgiving yourself or others) and allow the healing balm of His love to make you new.

How is your heart? 

What is Jesus bringing up?

What do you need to do with it?

A Special Kind of Stubborn

Friday

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 may be calling you to be the first in your family to break the cycle of unhealthy habits or to break the cycle of emotional or physical abuse. He may be calling you to start a new business to help people that need it or create a home unlike the one you grew up in.

He is asking you to be a pioneer.

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.

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.

 

 

 

Your Words

Words Are Powerful Quote Words. So Powerful. They Can Crush A Heart, Or Heal It. They Can

All words hold power.
They set the tone, communicate vision, encourage and lift up or they destroy trust, discourage and complicate the situation.
It is usually the words we plan that help people and the ones we don’t plan that hurt them.
Before you speak, ask yourself if your words are going to help the situation or hurt it?
Also,
It’s okay to say you don’t know.
It’s okay to say nothing at all.
It’s okay to choose to be proactive instead of reactive.
When in doubt, don’t say anything at all.
“Some people make cutting remarks, but the words of the wise bring healing.”
‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭12:18‬ ‭NLT‬‬
Spend your time planning the words you want to say and applying self-control to the ones you don’t.
My friend, may your words bring healing to those who desperately need it today and empower those around you to be courageous in pursuing the potential God has put in them. 

Trust God Today

to-us-waiting-is-wasting..To-God-waiting-is-working

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.

Walk and Rest

Sabbath-Mode-–-The-Journey-Series-–-Part-6-Pocket-Fuel-Matthew-11-28

Life often demands that you keep on walking even when you are tired. When you are burdened with grief, you still have to go to work.   When you are battle weary someone still has to do the dishes.

Jesus says there is a way to walk and rest at the same time:

“Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭11:28‬ ‭MSG‬‬

He says walk with me and I will show you how to do it.  He says to “Take my yoke” which just means “partner with me”.

Jesus says “I will bear the load and lead the way. Walk with me.”

Your “yoke” today may be dripping with unmet expectations, foundation-shaking experiences or unbearably heavy with too many obligations.

Jesus says to you today, “Here, take my yoke and I will take yours. My yoke is dripping with grace, burdened with divinely appointed purpose and wrapped in a deep peace that is not moved by tumultuous circumstances.”

You may be tired and weary today but still, you have to keep walking. Don’t walk alone. And swap yokes with Jesus, His is much better.

May you walk far and rest well in Jesus today.