Prayer is…

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Prayer is a retreat.

A retreat from the world and the battles you fight in it.

The word “retreat” is a military term. It means to get off the battlefield, to quit fighting, back out and regroup.

Prayer is creating time with God to regroup, reassess, restrategize and recover.

“May God look you full in the face and make you prosper”.

Numbers 6:26 MSG

The word for “prosper” here in the original Hebrew is “shalom” and often translated as peace.  Shalom is the peace that comes after the conflict and the quietness that comes after the chaos.

At its core, “Shalom” means the type of wholeness that comes after being broken.

Fighting a battle when you’re exhausted, wounded and discouraged never works.

Are you exhausted, wounded, or discouraged? 

Then it is time to pray.

To take a step back, find a quiet place with God so He can repair what is broken, remind you of His purpose and arm you with His vision.

Jesus has given you full access to God’s presence.

Enter in and rest.

He is waiting for you.

My prayer is that you would get off the battlefield for a while and allow God to love you to wholeness. 

Stay there as long as you need to.

Living in the Shadow of His Love

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“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the LORD, ‘He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.””

‭‭Psalm‬ ‭91:1-2‬ ‭NIV‬‬

It can be exhausting to find rest.

If you look to a person to provide rest, a safe place to hide, a security in an insecure world – they will fail you because they are fallible human beings. At their best, they are as broken as you are and looking to you to find rest.

If you look to a job or career as a place of safety, security, or fulfillment you may have seasons of it but economies change, companies change and you change. They are at best a temporary place of financial security.

Even if you look to the church to be a place of rest, it can fail you because the church is made of people. The Word says to find rest in God, not the church. You go to church to learn, grow, give, serve, bless, be blessed and so on.

Go to Jesus for your salvation, your refuge, your direction, strength, peace, and abundant life.

The church is only there to point you to Jesus.

The only true place of refuge, security, peace and rest is in the shadow of the Almighty God. What does that mean? It means that God wants you to stick close to Him, so close He can put His arm around you. So close, the shadow of His unending grace covers you.

Jesus came to clear the way for you to experience your relationship with God like this.

He is your refuge.
He is your fortress.
He is your Father and you can trust Him.

He is your place of rest, not just when everything is going good but when everything is falling apart.

He is your refuge when you are tired of fighting the battle.

He is your fortress when the battle is too much to take.

My friend, whatever today brings – may you dwell in the shelter of the Most High God and stick so close that you live in the shadow of His love. 

What Do You Need Today?

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Life is unpredictable.

Every day brings the unexpected and unplanned for.

The good news is that you have Jesus. He is here to guide you through it. He is your Shepherd.  He sees ahead, helps you walk through, takes you where you need to go and protects you along the way. Dangers may loom, predators may attack but you are not alone.

“GOD, my shepherd! I don’t need a thing.  You have bedded me down in lush meadows, you find me quiet pools to drink from. True to your word, you let me catch my breath and send me in the right direction.”

Psalm 23:1-3 MSG

Are you tired and worn out?

Jesus has quiet waters to restore your tired soul. Quiet means still, waters are refreshing. When was the last time you just let all around you become quiet and refreshed your spirit?

Is your soul starved?

Jesus will lead you to green pastures that will feed your hungry heart. He has made you with intentional and unique ways of refilling yourself when you’re empty. When was the last time you spent time doing what fills your soul?

Are you feeling lost?

God will guide you to the right paths that will bring God glory. He has created you on purpose for a purpose and will guide you in it. When was the last time you asked Him to show you the right path for this season? Often we continue in an old path from an old season until we look around and say, “I’m not in the right place”. Jesus is a present God who will give you updated guidance on the right path you are meant to be on.

He will lead you through the hills, the valleys, the deserts, and all the while, in the middle of it all, will provide a place for you to rest, refill, refocus in Him.

Jesus is the good Shepherd and He will lead you to what you really need today. 

What do you need?

Unplug

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You can’t know God’s will by looking from the world’s perspective.

You must unplug from it.

God’s will, His good, pleasing and perfect will for you isn’t difficult but it is very different.

Rest in His love.

Renew your mind.

Refresh your heart.

Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what Godʼs will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭12:2‬ ‭NIV‬‬

How do you unplug from the world?

How do you connect with God most: the Word, worship music, a walk, nature or being with others?

What refreshes your heart?

Do whatever you need to do to draw back from the world and draw close to God today.

Unplug from the world and plug into the presence of God.

You will be amazed by how much that fixes things.

Time to Rest

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Rest doesn’t have a season.

It isn’t optional.

You need it, every day.

You need rest for your body and for your soul, spirit, and mind.

“Six days you shall labor, but on the seventh day you shall rest; even during the plowing season and harvest you must rest.”
‭‭Exodus‬ ‭34:21‬ ‭NIV‬‬

You need to rest, refresh, recharge in all seasons but especially in the busiest ones.

It isn’t optional.

It’s how God made you and it is the way to optimize the gifts He has given you to fulfill the purpose He has placed before you.

What refreshes your spirit?

What rejuvenates your mind?

What feeds your soul?

How will you rest today?

What Are You Worried About?

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“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 as a Jesus follower, He is. 

Worry doesn’t keep some things from happening but it does keep you from enjoying what is happening in your life. It keeps you distracted, depressed and in a cycle of anxiety.

My friend, dispose of worry from being the center of your life and put Jesus there. He is a much better Lord than worry and fear. Bring what you are worrying about today and put them in God’s capable hands. Instead of worrying, pray. Then allow a sense of God’s wholeness fills your soul.  Then get busy loving the people He has placed in your life.

What is worry stealing from you today?

What can I pray for you? 

All That I Am

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“Let all that I am wait quietly before God, for my hope is in him”.

Psalm 62:5 NLT

Let all that I am

Daughter, wife, mother, friend, dreamer, detailer, realist, writer, speaker, cook, cleaner, pastor, inspirer, frail, my own worst critic, stubborn, strong, passionate, fearful, faithful, wonderful, beautiful, worry-full, redeemed, restored.

Rest…

Stop and don’t take another step forward. Hush anxious thoughts. Put down the to-do list. Quiet fearful eyes. Close the door. Rest with abandon. Embrace moments of peace. Breathe silence. Cease to think, worry, wonder and simply be.

Before God…

Not before the damage from the storm. Not before your bills. Not before your responsibilities. Not before your failures and faults nor your achievements or success. Wait quietly before God. The Creator, Provider, Peace Maker, Redeemer, Savior, Lord. He is sovereign and merciful, strong and gentle. Powerful and purposeful.

For my hope…

The tender expectations of possibility. Easily bruised. Unrealistic. Fantastic. Wonderful. Amazing hope.

Hope is the vehicle of momentum filled with a gas tank of faith and moves you forward. Without hope, the tank is empty, you feel as if you are going nowhere with no indication of possible change. With hope, nothing is impossible because with God all things are possible.

Is in Him…

My hope is wrapped up in the arms of grace surrounding my soul. My hope is not in temporal things, temporal circumstances, fleeting happiness but in a Person. My hope is held securely in nail-scarred hands. My hope is in Jesus, Precious Jesus. Faithful Jesus. Powerful Jesus. Loving Jesus.

Where is your hope?