Sustained

Sustain me, my God, according to your promise, and I will live; do not let my hopes be dashed.” Psalm 119:116 NIV

I remember a time a few years ago when I was discouraged and heartbroken.

We were living in Las Vegas and my neighborhood edged the desert by the Red Rock. One morning I got up early and took a walk. With worship music loaded on my iPod, I set out to pray and breathe in the presence of God.

As I turned the corner out of my neighborhood and onto the desert road behind it the song “Great is Thy Faithfulness” began. The sun was just rising over Red Rock Canyon and it was so beautiful that I almost dropped to my knees.  I heard God’s whisper in my heart, “Hold on. Your hopes are not lost. I am faithful to complete what I have started in you. I will sustain you through this and strengthen you in it. My faithfulness knows no end.”

It was a turning point for me. I carried that promise through a time that got harder long before it got better.

Hold on, my friend, your hopes are not lost. 

Jesus is faithful to complete what He started in you. 

He will sustain you and strengthen you in it. 

God’s faithfulness knows no end.

Never Give Up

Love never gives up.”
‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭13:4 MSG‬‬

So much can be communicated through a small touch.

A reassuring pat of the hand.

A hug.

A gentle tug on the elbow of someone who you want closer.

Holding a hand.

A small touch can make a bad thing okay, an okay thing good, and make a good thing great.

Small touches are difference makers in a relationship and in our lives.

They can be the first thing we unconsciously give and the first thing that we unconsciously withhold.

When we struggle, when we are angry, when we are hurt, we withhold the small touches.

It’s easy to forget how important they are to us and to those we love until we can’t give them anymore.

For your loved ones in your home, hug them, hold them, touch them.

For your loved ones outside your home, save them up, and send virtual hugs until it is safe to embrace them.

Today is my virtual hug to you.

Overwhelmed with Sorrow

“Then Jesus went with his disciples to a place called Gethsemane…” 

Matthew 26:36

Jesus went to a garden on the lower slopes of the Mount of Olives, the place olives were crushed.

With the scent of olive oil heavy in the air, Jesus prayed.

Not with pretty words but with a soul overwhelmed with sorrow.

He cried out to His Father until blood drops appeared on His forehead.

On the way to Easter, we must stop at Gethsemane.

This is the place of honesty and truth.

Jesus held back nothing, He never did.

Jesus went there and so can you.

At some point, we all need Gethsemane. A place to plead with God for help and courage. A place to hold back nothing.

My friend, you don’t have to “hold back” your sorrow or worry from God. In fact, He is the only One who is able to fully receive it.

Sorrow is a part of life and Gethsemane is a safe place to pour out our grief, our anger, our hurt, our fear. It is also there we find the unlimited depths of God’s love for us.

Today, your Father in heaven opens His arms to you. He is able to handle it all.  

Jesus asked God if salvation for mankind could be purchased any other way than through the cross – there wasn’t.

So He went there – for you and for me.

Nothing, not even overwhelming sorrow, can separate you from God’s love.

Take Hold

“Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.”

Philippians‬ ‭3‬:‭12‬ NIV

Let go of trying to earn God’s love.

Take hold tightly to God’s grace.

Let go of your fear of failure.

Take hold of your faith in Jesus.

Let go of perfectionism.

Take hold of the vision Jesus has for your life.

Let go of habits that sabotage your growth.

Take hold of the hope of transformation.

Let go of trying to control everything.

Take hold of trusting Jesus with it all.

Jesus doesn’t give up or let up and loves you so much that He will continually press you to press on.

“I’m not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me.”
‭‭Philippians‬ ‭3:12 ‬ ‭MSG‬‬

Yesterday is gone, take hold of that which Christ Jesus has taken hold of you today.

With God

 “Not one promise from God is empty of power, for nothing is impossible with God!” Luke 1:37 TPT

When the angel appeared to Mary and told her that she would give birth to Jesus, she asked him, “How is this possible?” and he replied, “with God!”.

God promised that a child would be born that would be the Savior of the world – hundreds of years before this moment.

I am sure many had given up hope.

I am sure many moved on.

But God’s promises are filled with God’s power.

The very same power that brought order to the chaos and light to the darkness promised that Immanuel, “God with us”, would be born.

And He was.

He was born and laid in a feeding trough, did miracles and died on a Roman cross, defeated death and ascended to heaven.

He is Jesus.

He is the Messiah.

Hold onto hope.

Don’t move on.

All of God’s promise are infused with His power.

Nothing is impossible with God.

When God drops a promise in your heart and an opportunity in your lap, you must have faith to go forward.

Grab on to faith like it is your job and obey whatever God asks you to do.

Not because it is easy.

Nothing worth having comes easy.

But if God asks you to do it, He will give you what you need to do it.

With God nothing is impossible.

With God, you can.

Refuge and Fortress

“I will say of the LORD, “He is my refuge

and my fortress, my God,

in whom I trust.”

‭‭Psalm‬ ‭91:1-2‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Jesus came so that you could live so close to the Father that the shadow of His love would cover you.

He went to the cross so that the presence of Almighty could be a refuge from the storm raging around you and a fortress of peace to run to when you are weary of fighting.

Jesus defeated death and cleared the way so you could be free to live fully in the power of God. He is the door into the refuge of God’s presence and the key to open it is trust.

Are you trusting Jesus today or are you trying to do it all yourself?

When You Feel Like Giving Up

Tuesday

When you feel like giving up, don’t.

There are gifts that only come from facing the hard things.

There is growth that only comes from holding onto God through the toughest times.

There is maturity that only develops as you persevere when everything around you is uncomfortable, difficult, and hard.

“Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” James 1:4 NIV

Don’t give up.

Hold on to Jesus and let perseverance complete you.

If you quit halfway through you will never know what God has for you.

He has a plan to complete you, to bring you to wholeness, to bring the parts that are broken and disconnected together knitted by His grace restored by His strength completed by His love.

Don’t quit.

Hold on and keep trusting.

You are worth it.

Be Prepared

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There are seasons of life that you are where you are supposed to be and doing what you are supposed to be doing. You are “in” season. You are inspired, motivated and moving forward.

Then there are seasons when you feel downright out of it. You are not where you want to be and not doing what you think you should be doing. You are in an “out” season. You are discouraged, unmotivated and stuck.

God will use you in both.

“Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.”

2 Timothy‬ ‭4‬:‭2‬ NIV

In fact, it is often the seasons that knock you to your knees that impact other people the most:

  • When the diagnosis doesn’t shake your faith. 
  • When you face a hard time but it doesn’t harden your heart.
  • When you are brave in the face of uncertainty and transparent as you lean on God for strength. 

Be prepared to walk with God in the good times and bad, easy seasons and hard ones because God is prepared to walk with you through it all.

If you are available, He will use you to minister to those around you.

God’s love is always in season, may you be filled with it today.

God Will Not Let Go of You

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“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. 

Quiet Strength​

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A great life requires quiet strength.

A strength that gets up when it is tired.

Does the right thing when it doesn’t feel like it.

Holds on when it wants to let go.

Pushes through when it would be easier to quit.

It isn’t pretty.

It is strong.

It has scars.

Quiet strength doesn’t stop.

“So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline.”

Colossians 3:12- MSG

It is the kind of strength that Jesus demonstrated every day as He walked with mankind and made his way to the cross.

The life that God has called you to live requires a quiet strength and a steely determination.

You can’t do it without Jesus and He doesn’t ask you to.

“I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being,”  Ephesians 3:16 NIV

The quiet strength of God defies logic and grows in what seems to be an impossible place.

Don’t give up.

Stay faithful.

Draw strength from Jesus today and keep doing what God is calling you to do.