“Write the vision and make it plain”

Where is God leading you? What revelations is He showing you? Your future is too important to leave to chance. As God had the prophet do, you write that vision down to help you remember it and to work it and to build upon it. Boldly make it your personal mission statement, pray over it, and continue to seek God’s leading for it.

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“Put Worry in its Place!”

 

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.” Philippians 4:6, NKJV

Oh, for just one day without worrying.  Just one day without the embossment of what we have to deal with on a daily basis, in the mind.  The frustrations, headaches and disappointments over decisions we have to make today.  Or, the reality of decisions made in the past mixed in with the future prevailing over us.  Oh!  Sometimes we wake up in the morning feeling the weight of the world on our shoulders.  We feel surrounded by all the what-was-done, and all the what-has-to-be-done, and all the what-will-be-done.

Chaos!  Will this be done right?  Will that one make the right choice?  How far will this go before it rights itself?  Questions running rampant causing the mind to be worked up into such frenzy that we can’t help but do anything but worry.  All those who’s, what’s, where’s, how’s and why’s of the day waiting for our minds to process and find a solution for.  No wonder so many people are so stressed out.  Why even those who profess Christ feel like all this worrying has caused them to reach their limits.  “I’m done.  I can’t take this anymore!” becomes the cry of the battle.

That’s far from the victorious battle cry that God wants to hear from His people.  No wonder stress, worrying, fear and such are spoken of so often in the Bible.  These things are opposed to you getting where God wants you.  It repels you away from drawing nearer to Him and His goal for your life.  Proverbs 12:25 declares, “Heaviness in the heart man maketh it stoop.”  It’s feeling so low almost every day because the load is just too much to bear.  The weight of it all makes one feel that they are trudging up a muddy hill while pulling a cart behind you.  It’s too much!

Keeping in mind the many adverse things one can face in a single day, Paul taught the Philippians, “Be anxious for nothing.”  On a daily basis, issues seem to flow from every area of life, yet Paul says, “Forget about it.”  How can this be?  It goes against human reasoning not to get worked up about all this stuff I have to deal with.  But, Paul says, “Chill.  You are carrying unnecessary trouble because you want to; because you refuse to let go, and let God.”

“But in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.”  “In everything!”  There is absolutely no area in your life that God doesn’t want you to trust Him for.  He is concerned about all of it.  If it bothers you, it bothers Him.  If the waves are churning in your life, He says to give it to Me, I’ll make them behave.  I, for one, am so grateful that He is not a far-off God.  He’s up close and personal, and He cares.  So, how do you handle this?  Take it to the Lord in prayer.  Many don’t heed this very simple advice.  We have heard it so much yet have never made it applicable to our lives.  But, this is the sure-fire method you need – pray!

“Let your requests be made known unto God.”  Here is something I have never noticed before until now.  The word “requests” has an “s” on the end making it plural.  Now, I don’t know about you but I have plural problems to deal with every day.  So, when you tell me to make my “requests known” I have a laundry list of stuff that tries to overrun me.  The “s” on the end means that God can handle it all and he wants you to give Him it all!  He cannot be overwhelmed with what you are going through so why not let Him have it.

There’s an “s” on the end!  Rejoice, because you don’t have to carry it all alone.  Every trial and heartache, all the way down to every disappointment and decision, we can take it all to Him today and put worry in its place so that we can be free.

“Following after God’s ways for us…”

Father God, may we follow the things You call good in our lives today. We can get so caught up in the things around us and the ways of this world that we forget Your ways for us. “He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?” Micah 6:8

“You are a POWERFUL GOD!”

YOU ARE A POWERFUL GOD! “God is my strength and power: and he maketh my way perfect.” 2 Samuel 22:33 My way is made strong in Him!

“God’s got you covered!”

GOD’S GOT YOU COVERED! “He will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness is a shield and buckler.” Psalms 91:4, ESV

Over and over again, God’s Word assures us that He is there for us. He is fighting for us. And, He is watching over us and protecting us. In times of uncertainty remember God’s faithfulness to shield you through it all.

“I’m not facing this day alone…”

I don’t know what you have to face today,
but I know you have a heavenly Father
who is willing to face it with you.

Start your day with God and walk through
your day with God.

“An Awesome Love Story”

Photo: Pixabay/pixel2013

I am more in love with Jesus today, and each day that follows, then when I first started out.  Though experiences and growth in this spiritual journey, I have come to recognize the sweetness I have found in my Savior.  The more I have gone through, and the more He has brought me through, the more I appreciate Him for holding my hand every step of the way.

In human relationships, there seems to be more excitement in the beginning of this adventure called love.  We can’t wait to see what happens next or can’t wait for the next visit or phone call.  But, as I have come to know my Savior over these years, my excitement in Him builds more and more.  Every day brings new revelations of how awesome His love is for me – and as one who sits back in the sun just to hear the birds sings – I sit in the splendor of His radiant presence and enjoy His love that sings over me.

His awesome love story with us is not like another.  It is complete yet renewing every day.  As a fountain that never runs dry, it is full, yet it is constantly “pouring” into our lives (Romans 5:5, NKJV), uncontainable and overflowing, giving us more and more of Him each day.  His love is not a one-shot deal.  But, it’s our covering, our reliance, our safety blanket, the cradle in which we rest in the comfort and care of the one who loves us best.

The awesomeness of His love story toward us was solidified when He was nailed to the cross.  But, can I tell you, it’s so much more than that.  He didn’t stop there, but rather chose every day of our lives to be there for us wherever we go – fully caring, fully involved, and fully in love with each one of us.

Why?

Because He has a “steadfast love” for us (Psalm 86:15, ESV).  His love is faithful, present, and enduring.  It is not easily swayed or moved from where we are, no matter how ugly it may appear at times.

When people would have given up on us in those ugly moments, He still moves toward us.

Why does He do that? Because He chooses to.

In most relationships, people come to a mutual understanding of love before they move forward.  Jesus is different.  His love for us was never dependent on what we did or didn’t do (remember those He prayed for while suffering on the cross).  He never waited for us to make the first move or come to some mutual understanding of what this love would be all about.  But, in the awesomeness of His love, Jesus moved forward in loving us while we were still “sinners” (Romans 5:8).

He has never waited for us to get it right or come out of those ugly shadows before we were counted worthy of His love. As a matter of fact, He showed us, love, before we showed signs of loving Him back.  In His passion for us, He always made the first move.  The Bible tells us, “We love him, because he first loved us,” (1 John 4:19).

So, if you are in doubt today about the awesomeness of His love story over you, no matter what voices are telling you, I am here to tell you differently.  You and me, we are all unequivocally loved by Jesus and there’s nothing we can do about it because He already did it all.  His love is constantly pouring into us, never giving up on us, and has already made the first move toward us.  All we can do is accept His love and sit back and bask in the awesomeness of it.  Now, that’s something to get excited about!

If you haven’t already, give Jesus your heart today and accept what He is already willing to give you.  Find a good Bible-based church and experience His awesome love story up close and personal.  He’s waiting for you.

“Instinctively His!”

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As I sit here working on another writing project I glance out my window to ponder a thought.  Upon doing so, a squirrel captures my attention and I am altogether fascinated by what I see.  He is hopping in mid-air from branch to branch without what seems to be care or thought in the world.

What I mean is he doesn’t stop to measure the distance to see if he can make it, nor does he seem to contemplate the physics involved that would put a web-slinging Spiderman to shame as he sails through the air, grabbing hold of the next limb, and going again with ease of effort.

Instinctively he knows and is wired to map out the trees and to venture through them without slip or fail in a matter of seconds.

Every creature of God has ingrained instincts.  We are all born with a sense of knowing.  For some those senses are geared toward survival and protection.  Some naturally know how camouflage to ward of predators or to find food.  Others are excellent skill building machines that know how to make stable houses for their families in the harshest of climates.

Back to our friend the squirrel.  As he meanders through the trees with his ingrained knowing, not worrying or stressing over life, I must ask, dear child of God, are we navigating life with the same confidence?  He, the squirrel, is wired to know what to do and how to live by what’s inside of him.  What of us?

The Bible tells us, “You are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world,” (1 John 4:4).   As we are going about life we are to know to whom we belong.  “You are of God!” the Word tells us.  Therefore, because of our holy lineage; because of how we are wired through the blood of Jesus Christ, you and I are to instinctively operate like the “greater” is in you.

When faced with the adversities of life our holy intuitiveness should kick in; faith should carry us into our spiritual survival mode and say, “Hey, wait a minute!  I am more than this!  I won’t give in!  I won’t quit!  I KNOW to whom I belong!  I KNOW He that is on the inside of me, and He is greater than anything and everything I am facing!”

Our friend the squirrel went from branch to branch without worrying because he knew what was inside of him.  Do you know Who is in you today?  If you are a child of God you have the greatest living inside of you and you have to instinctively know within yourself that you are His.  Let that knowing empower you as you swing through the trees of life today.

Photo Credit: Pixabay

“The One Another Concept”

Despite the suggestion of this present age, we are not in this world for ourselves alone.  Our paths cross times, destinies, and people for a purpose.  Our lives are meant to connect as building blocks upon the foundation of our Lord Jesus Christ to help bring about change in the world of individuals we meet and pray for and love with the heart of Christ.

There is a “one another concept” that is richly expressed in God’s Word time and again.  One verse tells us, “Wherefore comfort yourselves together, and edify one another, even as also ye do,” (1 Thessalonians 5:11).  Another verse says, “…by love serve one another,” (Galatians 5:13).  And yet, another still says, “Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ,” (Galatians 6:2).

When we are thinking along the lines of ministering to people, it will only happen when we consider one another.  It only happens when we step out of self for a moment, take our eyes off us, and see what another may be going through, and taking the time to step into their world for a minute to edify, serve, or help that one to bear something they need help with at the moment.

Serving people is reaching into their world where their need is pleading for help.  Sometimes that need is physical for things such as food or warmth, but at other times it’s a hug or a buddy saying, “I’m with you through this.”  All of it is driven by concern about what someone else is going through.  It’s not sitting in the seat of judgment over circumstance but it’s viewing them with the same compassionate eyes that caused Jesus to care about people the way He did.

This kind of compassion toward others causes movement.  One can’t see the struggle and not want to help with the need.  It’s recognizing, Lord, I may not be able to help everybody in everything, but for this need, I can stretch out my hand, my heart, and my time to care about another soul.

From the time of the creation of humanity, the “one another concept” has been in play.  God designed another being in the form of Eve to help compliment Adam so that he wouldn’t have to do life alone (see Genesis 2:18-22).

They were designed for relationship that offers support physically, emotionally, and spiritually to one another.  This idea can most certainly be applied to relationships with our friends, people on our jobs or we come across during the day, acquaintances and so on.  It’s hands and hearts of love designed for the betterment of humankind to meet the needs of one another wherever they are.

The “one another concept” isn’t just a good idea.  It’s a life choice that raises awareness of simply being there for people when people need you the most.  In other words, put people on your radar and become alert to any distress signals or troubles that might be registering for attention.  Some people may not know how to ask for help or feel completely uncomfortable with the idea, but in our awareness, when we notice those signals and answer the call, we can make a positive difference in that life that may have felt like it was going under all alone.

After all, if it hasn’t happened already, and even if it did, there may still come a time when we need that same support system that compels another to be willing to put us and our needs ahead of their personal feelings, advancement, and/or pleasure.

We don’t have to fit in with the self-serving nature of our modern culture.  Especially, if we remember that Christ deliberately put all our needs ahead of His own when He went to the cross in our place.  Love is what turned his attention off Himself and onto us.  What more can we do but make the same effort to reach another with the same love and help that was so freely given to us?

Is there another that needs you today?  Watch those you come into contact with during the day.  Are there ways you can brighten someone’s day?  Can you offer water or bread, in Jesus’ name, to one who has a need to be filled?  Can someone else use a word of hope and encouragement that guides them to see more than what they are facing now?  Can another just have your listening ear and understanding so they can unload a great weight they have been carrying much too long?

Touching needs where they are is only made possible when we get involved in the “one another concept”; when we allow God to use us, and our big or small offerings of help, to plant seeds of love in the life of one who may really need it today.  Together, we can do this!

“Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.” Ephesians 5:1-2, NKJV

“When it’s too heavy to carry…”

Photo: Pixabay/Pexels

When it’s too heavy to carry on our own, we look to others for help.  Think about it, if we need to move heavy boxes, furniture, grocery bags, or what have you, we call out for help.  When we come across something physical that is just too much for us to lug from point A to point B, we seek assistance.

But, what about heaviness of the heart?  Often when we are facing emotional and inner turmoil of the spirit, we continue to try to press on our own, hesitant to ask for help or support.

Burdens, they’re so heavy.  Many times they can feel like a ton of bricks just sitting on you, slumping your posture and bogging down your heart.  With the brow creased in concern and eyes moist with hurt and confusion, it’s hard to raise one’s self to the position of being alightened in happiness and hope.

The thought hit me during one of my prayer times – I wonder if it’s harder, at times, because we look at what we can do to press out some joy in our own lives.  Our real joy comes from a natural flow due to our relationship with God.  Any ounce that we can squeeze out in our own time, strength, and power is just a temporary fix.  But, what we find in Christ is pure, real, genuine, and it lasts.  Oh, we will still experience moments and times of sadness from time to time.  But, what He offers us is filling, it’s encouraging, and it’s overflowing into all those cracks and crevices where our own abilities have fallen short of reach, if we will just seek Him for it.

Recently, I had an experience with an artificial or substitute sweetener that I didn’t care for.  I’m not knocking on no one else’s preference of what they put into their drinks and such, but for me, I didn’t like it one bit.  It took away from the pure taste of my coffee that I was accustomed to and it made it taste funny.  When we try to substitute or exchange what God can bring into our lives with our own attempts to patch the burdensome holes we feel with band-aid like plans and faith, it’s not as pure and strong as what He can do for us, and like any band-aid, it comes off easy showing itself weak in really being able to help us.

We need something more.  Rather than temporary relief, we need something or Somone stronger to help us carry the burdens that are weighing us down (remember the furniture above); to assist us in the troubling times we are facing.

We can find that help when we draw closer to God in our search for relief from the heaviness we carry.  One of the ways we can do that is to meditate on what He already speaks to us through the promises He has given us in His Word.

It is there, where His Spirit speaks through those words, to help remind us of the peace we can obtain when we give our worries over to Him.  “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.  And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus,” (Philippians 4:6-7).  And, the peace He gives is not like the world’s, therefore we can rest securely in it (John 14:27).

Those words tell us of the joy and love that is part of the package deal of being in this sweet and wonderful relationship with Him.  “The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; he will save, he will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing,” (Zephaniah 3:17).

In those words, we find that we are not walking on this journey alone.  Our steps may be heavy at times, but even when we can’t physically feel it, His promise says, “I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee,” (Hebrews 13:5).  No matter how fearsome, His Word speaks to our hearts, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, Nor will the flame burn you,” (Isaiah 43:2, NASB).

And, in the time of our sorrows, His promise declares, “He healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds,” (Psalm 147:3).

Yes, it definitely can get heavy at times.  But, in those times, we remember, we don’t have to carry it alone.  For every burden and heavy load we are given this promise: “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you,” (1 Peter 5:7).

He cares for you, are those last words.  Look to God, He is there for you.  When something is too heavy to carry, God invites us to come to Him to find the help we need.

This is my heart, Lord.  It has its failings at times.  It has its inadequacies, too.  But, it also has You.  And, where You are, O God, there is help, wholeness, completeness and healing.  Therefore, I pray, wherever there is brokenness, cover with Your salve of love.  Whenever there is confusion, whisper sweet words of peace to calm it.  And, in the times of heaviness, I pray that You would help me to carry that which is too much for me to bear on my own. AMEN!