Purposeful Faith

Tag - #grace

Swinging in Trust

Swinging in Trust

He stood there. He looked up at the bars.

“Do you think I can do it Mommy?”

“Yes, son, I do.”

This kid was nearly a blackbelt at monkey bars. He lives them, he breathes them, he scampers across them at nearly every playground we go to. There was no doubt he could swing across, even if they were 3 times as high as the others.

“Son, just keep your eyes looking ahead – and move – one by one, bar-by-bar.”

At this point, the hyperventilation begins, the “I can’ts”,  the “It’s impossibles” and the “I don’t want tos” come about. At this point, I draw near, look him in the eye and say,

“Don’t give up. You can do it. I will help you. I will not leave your side. Do you trust me?”

And in this split-second moment, as soon as my words left the safety of my mouth, I knew they were not only meant for him, but for me.

“Don’t give up. You can do it. I will help you. I will not leave your side. Do you trust me?”

When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze. Is. 43:2

The bars God calls me to climb, even when descent is miles below, are always bars for which he has well prepared me. Just as I put my arms around my son to encourage, comfort and catch him – God does the same with me.

He will not let your foot slip—
he who watches over you will not slumber. Ps. 121:3

Will we trust him?

So often, we are so like me son, aren’t we?

We find moving across the bars of known and familiar is clockwork,
but, pushing ahead into risky is not.

We find evaluating catastrophe,
more valuable than believing he will really rescue our fall.

We know that God is near,
we just are not sure enough that he will really catch us.

The heights of big, high and different,
negate God’s bootcamp of preparation.

We see the different,
God sees how he is always the same.

Somehow, when we see the heights of new,
we forget the victories of old already proved.

Then, like my son, we question things, we look down and say, “Whoa, God, this? You want me to do this?”

Then, we question things.
We let our mind run laps.
We procrastinate.
We analyze.
We rationalize.
We justify.
We give marching orders.
We disaster prepare.
We get bunker supplies.

Do you allow the risky heights of what you see,
divert you from the ample love of the one you can’t?

For the truth is, the adventure which you stand, looking at, considering and questioning, is the exact one that God wants to use to encourage you. It is the exact activity that will bring you to the other side saying, “Whoa God, look what we did together. What else can we do?”

It is ground you end up dancing upon, spinning upon, jumping upon, cheering upon. It’s a place where you look at the vastness of new faith straight in the face. It reminds you that you were always safe, you always are safe and, with God, you always will be safe.

Trust in the Lord and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. Ps. 37:3

Next time, when you stand on the cold bar of fear with your heart pumping, I don’t know, perhaps you think of my little guy and how much he could absolutely do it! Perhaps you just take a deep breath, move in, move arms and move forward knowing God has you.

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

3 Reminders:

  1. #RaRalinkup Twitter Party is this coming Monday. Encourage a friend, blogger or author using #RaRalinkup on Monday. Your words may make the difference between an okay day and a great one.
  2. Join the Cheerleaders for Christ Facebook page where we encourage and support one another.
  3. Don’t miss the guest blogger post on Monday. You will be blessed.
     Loading InLinkz ...

Getting Back to Simple Faith and Joy

Simple Faith

Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. Heb. 11:1

It is all about simple. Not getting duped by the complex theories, herculean hypotheses and advanced equations of genius conjectures.

It is all about simple. Not joining the madness of consumerism and collectivism.

It is all about simple. Not looking left or right or up or down, trembling, then constructing your own bomb shelter of safety.

It is all about simple. Not getting involved in the wars of deep-seated theology that are bound to leave relational battle-wounds, simply, unrepairable.

It is all about simple. Not counting the pennies of another, while staring at your possibly empty piggy bank.


The more simple our faith, the more abundant our life.

The more simple our reliance, the more wisdom we accrue.

For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength. (1 Cor. 1:25)

“Simple” is eyes that trust the unseen.
Not seeing the world as its driving force.
But God, as he pushes us, in safe protection, to his known.
It is keeping simple in the face of other’s complex.
Jesus in the forefront of rushing minds.
Following his lead,
the one who is the pure – the untainted apple of truth.
Not biting into fake, fraudulent or bound to fry,
but staying attuned to the basics, the reality, the hope,
despite the grey nuances presented by talking heads.
Despite the exotic languages that come in ones mind – only sent to confuse.

It is where mission bubbles up,
and it is hope that actually – fosters hope.
And strength that has the strength to endure – it endures the fire.
And life that actually brings more life – it creates it.
All join hands to light a spark to boldness,
so one can walk through the fire and come alive on the other side,
believing that will happen is they will emerge refined, shining, glowing,
a pure byproduct of him who is pure.

Themselves, yet all the same one who they always wanted to be.

And this is all that matters. That we follow him. That we listen to his voice. We hear his Word. We love. We listen. We do as he did.

The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love. Gal. 5:6

Simple faith.

Simple faith leads to simple love. Simple love is simply what this thing called faith is all about.

Jesus never cared much for the deep insight of man, but he cared far greater that, of him, we are his biggest fan.

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

How to Fly Above Daily Problems

Fly Above Daily Problems

Kids fight back my words of instruction. I get anxious.
The car won’t start. I get anxious.
Relational conflict brews. I get anxious.
The day looks difficult ahead. I get anxious.
It looks like I am going to be late. I get anxious.
The schedule appears too much to manage. I get anxious.
Traffic sits. I get anxious.
Temper tantrums of toddlers ensue. I get anxious.
An unexpected bill arrives. I get anxious.
Home issues pop up. I get anxious.

Do you ever feel like me? So busy preparing for tsunami problems that your heart is unprepared for the small ruptures?

Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. (Ps. 139:23) 

God is testing me to know my anxious thoughts.

I can’t help but wonder, when he does, if he likes –
not my biblical, spiritual and theological heart –
but my moment-by-moment heart?  

And why such a clean one want to see such anxious filth?

After much time treading through the waters of wonder, I arrived at these points:

God tests us, because he wants to bless us. 

He wants to know us, because he loves us.

He still thinks of us, in precious terms, even if he knows our most ugly terms (Ps. 139:17).

Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. Ja. 1:2-4

He gives us baby tests, to applaud our baby steps of trust.
He sends us exams, in hopes that we walk across his graduation stage of peace.
He prepares us, because he truly is preparing us.
He is not trying to wear us, because he doesn’t care for us.
But loving us, because he wants love – in us.

Don’t doubt that your trials are building triumph!

Trials are higher education learning opportunities that build the brain power of perseverance and endurance that deliver us to the grade of “complete” in Christ Jesus.

Why would I run from these opportunities? Why would I fear the establishment that is meant to establish me?

Shouldn’t I be looking at trials not as crying grounds, but as blessing grounds? Not as fearing rooms, but as giving rooms? Not in doubt, but in faith – of the mighty work that God is about to do in me?

Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. Ja. 1:12

So, may we descend on “scary” like falcons,
driving into them at speeds of 200 miles per hour,
not tremoring, but trusting,
not resisting, but persisting,
not fighting, but flying.
Soaring high above the worldly,
beyond the grime of life,
on the horizon of God’s great opportunity.
To see the glory of his test,
giving permission for him to be our rest.
And suddenly, a great shift persists,
for on our plains we must see a new way,
from spiritual eyes – and not earthly,
from godly plains and not normal.
And we do.
We go with God.
We go to beauty, peace and power –
to heights unseen
and places unknown,
and lands untraversed,
in the completion of his will,
in the fullness of his grace,
in the lightness of his wind.
We find ourselves powerful not our powerless,
trusting the sacred – in the sticks of the mess –
for here, it’s the place, the power place – and the resting place – all the same,
the place where God weaves holiness into the very fabric of our being.
​We rest down and continue to fly on his triumphant ways.

Easy Subscribe! Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.


  1. I am extending the guest post submissions deadline until today. Copy and paste your post on to my web form. Last chance!
  2. Join the Cheerleaders for Christ Facebook page!
  3. Remember that Monday, 12/7 is our Twitter party of encouragement. We encourage other bloggers using #RaRalinkup.
 Loading InLinkz ...

5 Things That Self-Destruct Faith (Which You’re Probably Doing)

Self-Destruct Faith


It is the best thing we have and, yet the hardest thing to walk by.
It is the gift of moving beyond our self, and all the same, the gift of seeing into our self.
It is the know-how that we don’t know-how.
It is the reasoning, others call mis-reasoned.
It is the bootcamp for endurance and perseverance.
It is the beginning of progress and the end of self-loathing.
It is both our movement and the mercy of Jesus co-mingling.
It is the knowledge that what we can’t do, we always can do – through Christ.
It is a step towards the unknown, where we trust the known is holding us.
It is the access point to amazing.
It is the hope of all glory laid down on earth.

It is our calling, the thing that I love and the thing I so often hate. It stretches me. It pushes me. It calls me to the cliff, in a way, it wraps it’s hands around me and shoves me over m cliff of safety. It makes my heart pump. It gets me sweaty. But, all the same, it works every time, when I let it.

So why don’t I let it work?

I just went to Allume, a bloggers conference. It was destined to be a glorious time! A time God had cut out for me to love others, to offer prayer and to walk with him. Yet, at the very beginning of the event, faith started to walk out and doubts started to walk in. All I seemed to be  left with was a slip and slide experience of doubts ready to splash away all my dreams of excitement.  Whoosh! Away she goes.

So, what is one to do when we see ourselves slipping away from God? When we find the trigger point to our doubting point has been pulled? We have to find out what compelled us to pull the trigger in the first place.

5 Ways We Self-Destruct Daily Faith

  1. Forgetting Grace

    When we walk hitting our self with the force of all we can never do right, we walk with an internal wrecking ball that stands to tear down the joy we have in the Lord.  Forgetting grace means, building a monument to shame that you can’t stop looking at.

    TRUTH: Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. La. 3:22

  2. Being Someone Else

    The second we walk in someone else’s skin is the second our own skin ends up crawling in discouragement and doubt. We can’t expect to feel full when we are emptying all that God created us to be on to the floor to be trampled upon.

    TRUTH: For the Lord sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the Lord looks on the heart. 1 Sam. 16:7

  3. Looking at Other’s Best Pictures

    When we take those horrid both-eyes-closed-with-a-double-chin pictures and compare them against others glamour shots, it is no wonder we feel like God couldn’t love us.

    TRUTH: (Nothing) will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Ro. 8:39

  4. Thinking There Really is No Plan

    When we think he’s not sending us anywhere, we start sitting nowhere. We will fall back on the couch – stagnant, scared, indignant and like repellant to change. Loaded schedules, relaxation, timidity and entertainment become the pursuit of our life.

    TRUTH: So, because you are lukewarm–neither hot nor cold–I am about to spit you out of my mouth. Rev. 3:16 (to be considered in light of John 3:16)

  5. Not Keeping an Always-Eye Out for God

    When we go through the day living by our minds rulings, we consistently miss who is ruling. It is the fastest way to move away from God, fast.

    TRUTH: In their hearts humans plan their course, but the LORD establishes their steps. Prov. 16:9

God has great stored for you. Will you open it? Will you walk to it?

For me, at Allume, my soul got right with faith on day 1, so that on days 2, 3 and 4, God could walk through. And he did. I praise Him for this return, because if I didn’t there is no doubt I would have wandered like a lost little red riding hood.

What I came to see was the faith-eating wolves where really sheep that God wants to use to bless me far beyond my greatest pre-conceived dreams. Taking a stand in faith, is always the best stand one can take.

Where will you stand – lost? Or found in God’s great plan?

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

 Loading InLinkz ...

The Love Of God You Probably Don’t Know

The Love Of God

Sometimes, I look at my family and think, “I want to give you so much more. I want to love you more. I want to be there for you more.”

I have this longing, but then the action seems far from me. I grew up believing that you just work harder, you try harder and you push harder to do the right thing. You simply give your best effort and then God will love you, then you might be good enough, then you might make it through those pearly gates of glory.

But, striving only ends up producing in an overworked blown-out child.

Striving gives us the false belief salvation is on our shoulders and not God’s.

Striving pushes the need for love far and the will of self first and foremost.

Amidst all this striving, it is almost impossible to let the love of Christ’s sacrifice pour over you? Just think, there is no sitting with working. No relying with striving. No space for grace.  It is called captive service.

You serve and do and be for God–or you don’t get in!

This makes me think, where is the love?

Even more, no matter how amazing our parents were, no matter how fantastic their love – the plain ‘ole fashioned truth is that they can never love us like Jesus did. They have flaws. And because of their inadequacies and flaws, we learn an inadequately flawed love too. We walk receiving, knowing and giving partial love.

So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are his child,
God has made you also an heir. Gal 4:7

Even God gets this point. This is why he tells us we are not a slave: a captive striver, an excessive worker, a ruled-over peon, an owned tool or a beaten serf. No. God tells us rather, that we sit in the full glory of who he is.

We are fully loved by the only one who created the definition of love. We are God’s child.
We get the glorious inheritance that is only stored away for God’s own. We are heirs.
We have the same love line as Christ running through us. His DNA is power. We are God’s child.
We are secure in what our father wants to bestow on us; our laziness can’t push it away. We are heirs.
We are new creations, being reformed into the full image of Jesus Christ. We are God’s child.

Now if we are children, then we are heirs–heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ,
if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory. Ro. 8:17

May your sufferings not be seen as agony,
but as gifts that confirm your destiny.

May your pain not be run away from,
but held as the ticket that shows how loved you are.

May your agony not be lived in agony,
for it is simply a precursor to the glory that will shine on you.


Because your whole self is sealed in a way that can never be torn apart. The Spirit lives in you. You can never eliminate his presence or the temple in you, as a child of God.

And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit” Eph 1:13

The Spirit confirms your belonging.

The Spirit speaks to your very heart.

The Spirit leads you in all truth.

The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Ro. 8:16

No matter what turn we make, as a child of God, we are united with the Spirit that confirms our Father’s love. It holds us in all love, safety and significance. This eternal kingdom, belonging to “the children”, cannot be undone. Or erased. It is finished, on our behalf, by Jesus Christ.

Now, we can walk love. We can be love. Real love. Not from a place of doing, but simply from a place of being. Being a son or daughter of the most high king.

We love because he first loved us. 1 Jo. 4:19

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

Do You Deflect Amazing Grace?

Do You Deflect Amazing Grace?

We stood at the toll being reprimanded by the officer, “You deserve a ticket!”

Just like I deserve a good whacking for yelling at my kids.
Just like I deserve a talking to on how to do things right with my family.
Just like I deserve to be punished for how my jealous heart of comparing surfaces.

Just as I, apparently, deserve two points for this offense. Man, I messed up again. Why can’t I just get things right?

“Pull on up and pull over to the side of the road. I will be with you in a minute.” We did. We pulled up and waited and prayed and hoped that the worst case scenario wouldn’t come true.

Our hearts pumping, our minds plotting, our hands rubbing, anxiety filled the car. The policeman sauntered up to our window, looked at us and said, “Go ahead. Move along.”

We got no ticket. We were freed.

What we deserved was passed off.
The hand slap that should have come down on us was caught.
The frustration at our mistake, quickly dissipated.
The weight of anxiety on our shoulders, was exchanged for praise – we were saved.

Grace saves every time. Not just to push us, deviants, into heaven, but to push us, deviants, into God’s hands moment by moment, interaction by interaction and thought by thought. Not embraced just on bad days, but also on good days. Not just according to repentance, but according to our daily living.

Grace is:

Knowing that no word spoken against you can overpower the truth
that you’re “blameless.”

Extending kindness to yourself because there is not one time Jesus wouldn’t.

Telling your children, “We all make mistakes. Mommy does too.”

Not tossing out that coloring drawing you did in front of your son
because you think it is ugly.

Speaking “peace” to a heart that is guilt-laden with the overwhelming feeling
it can’t do right.

Finding a way to condone a good action, rather than to condemn a bad one.

Letting your heart be encouraged by the idea that you are a work in progress,
not a work of failure.

Remembering that all beginnings of beauty,
have a starting point that is treasured by God.

Abiding through the bad, because, with Jesus,
you are always on the brink of his great.

Believing in God’s ability to save in the same way you tell others they should.

Being okay with not winning, because Jesus already has.

Understanding that Christ has won, this moment, right here, right now, for you.

Keeping your mouth shut, in the assurance that your sovereign God
will take care of things.

Speaking love when your first thought is to speak fire, annoyance,
frustration, criticism and condemnation.

Walking towards one that you desperately want to walk away from. 

Embracing the one who has historically battle-wounded you
to the point where you feel crippled.

Believing God could actually love one who fails as much as you –
and as much as others have failed you.

Letting go of lingering shame and walking into the idea that grace fully “counts.”
Forgiving your own heart even when it did the worst.

Finding hope in situations that appears hopeless.

Finding Jesus no matter what.

Finding praise as a result.

Finding peace.

Breathing in love.

Exhaling relief.

This is amazing grace. It is the weight of all the bad that everyone deserves, everyone earned and everyone should confined to. It is weight that sits dense, heavy, burdening. It is the weight, we love to sling around, hitting ourselves and others.

Yet, grace is the due burden that God decides should no longer be our burden.

So, I wonder, why do we walk around carrying it?

Take a moment, remember your most recent mess up. One that you really came down hard on yourself for. Can you see it?

Jesus also sees what you did.
He hands you the ticket envelope.
You look at it. You feel it. You hate it.
You messed up.
You did wrong.
You failure.
You idiot.
You almost tuck it away, not wanting to really see what God has for you.
But, you don’t.
You open it.

Inside the envelope, you see it…

There is no ticket there.

While you thought you were convicted,
Christ leaves you unafflicted.

While you figured you were done,
Jesus says you have only yet begun.

You walk with your fine, but Jesus says,
with me, you’re just fine.

Do you live this way? I often don’t.

But, I should because:

One who is uncharged, is unchained to shame.
One who is unchained to shame, is the greatest player in God’s game.
One who is in God’s game, is giving fame to his name.

One who gives all fame to his name, is the greatest threat to the devil.
They are kingdom-makers on earth.
They are peace-forgers in war-torn lands.
They are shame-healers to other’s pains.
They are heavenly-visionaries of Christ’s love.
They are the wonder, the awe and the thrill of all the grace always falling from the cross.
They are the magnets that draw in the bleeding, gasping and dying hearts just barely surviving the world.
They are looking to see how we handle what we call – amazing.

Are we capsules of his amazing grace,

ready to pour out his medicine,

or do we allow shame to close down the effectiveness of God’s grace?

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” 2 Cor. 12:9

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

 Loading InLinkz ...

When You’ve Pushed God To the Point of No Return

Point of No Return

By: Angela Nazworth

The busy highway turned into a parking lot. I gripped the steering wheel and willed the cars ahead of me to move. Not one budged. I was going to be very late picking up my daughter from preschool and I worried that she was feeling sad and scared as she waited for me. When I finally arrived at her school, I found her sitting alone at her table. She was wearing her pink coat with a matching hat; her princess themed back pack was resting over her slumped shoulders. When I called out her name, her little head popped up like a gopher emerging from its tunnel.

“Mommy,” she exclaimed!

Reaching out for my embrace, she turned her head slightly toward her teacher and confidently said, “I just knowed my mommy would never leave me.”

Do you hold such confidence in your heavenly Father?

Do you know that He’ll never leave you?

I ask because deep down in my soul, I didn’t always believe this truth. I believed it in part, but not in whole. I believed that God, the creator of the universe, was always present in His creation. I believed that if I were oppressed, victimized, or sick, He would be with me in those dark hours. I also believed that He celebrated each milestone and victory in my life.

What I had trouble believing is that God
would stay by my side during the times I failed.

When people or the stuff of this world hurt me, I found my strength in knowing that I was a child of God and that He would not forsake me. Yet, when I was the promise-breaker, liar and the selfish hoarder, I felt not only shame and sorrow for my actions, I felt alone. That perceived desolation, which was stationed on a lie and wrapped with guilt, often kept me from crying out to my Savior.

I took God’s promises from John 3:16-17 and added  the word “unless.”

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” Unless you mess up in a big way.

With the added unless, I completely ignored John 3:17

“For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.”

I rewrote the meaning of grace and lived as if it didn’t apply to me. But Grace is without limits. Grace blatantly steps over our human-made boundaries and says I haven’t left you. I will never leave you. Rest in me. Trust me. Live for Me, because I will never let you go.

Scripture does not read, He will never leave you or forsake you unless you take the Lord’s name in vain, or unless you commit adultery, or unless you yell at your kids, or unless covet your neighbor’s house.

Yes, our actions have consequences. No, God does not want us to chose our sinful desires over His perfect gifts. But once we’re His, he won’t leave us. He never longs for us to self destruct. Instead, He hears our cries and invites us into His open arms.

Point of No Return

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?  As it is written, ‘For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.’ No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers,  nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8: 35-38.

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

Angela Nazworth is a flawed and forgiven recovering perfection who writes mostly about the beauty of grace, faith, friendship, vulnerability and community at angelanazworth.com. She is a wife and a mother of two, who manages philanthropic communications for a nonprofit, national healthcare association. Angela’s also an encourager, a lover of good books, coffee, girl’s night out, sunshine, and waterfalls. She believes the creator of the universe is both the author of and lead character in her life story. With every experience she learns more about who she is in Him … and takes another step on her journey to love others better. You can also chat with Angela via Twitter.

Dethrone Mean People

mean people

I have been noticing a red-flag pattern lately. It’s ugly. It’s injuring. It’s hard to admit. And when I take a long hard look at it, I think it might say a lot more about me than it does about anyone else.

People are letting me down.

Saying no when they’re supposed to say yes.
Not following through on what they said they would do.
Acting not nice and making me pay the price.
Lying, thinking I don’t know.
Hurting, then walking away.
Promising and not delivering.

People are letting me down.

When I look at these five words, I see so much expectation. I see the words, “Please, be nice, don’t hurt me and give me what I need,” but what I also see, upon stepping back, is a small air of demand shining. In a way I’m saying: “People, get lifting me up!” Then: “God, why do you allow this to happen?” 

God, though. God, he doesn’t answer yelling demands with a cowering spirit. He doesn’t bow down to our attacks for more to let our feelings establish his. He doesn’t retaliate based on questions. Instead, he compels our hearts to realize he is far less concerned about “should have’s” because Jesus “already has.” He already died to make us worthy. He has given us all we need. We are more than enough. Sturdy. Steady. Unwavering in hope.

In this, he doesn’t promise we “will have”
the best people can offer,
because we already have
the best he could
(which is more than enough).

Jesus never said:

People will always say yes, when they are supposed to say yes.
They will follow through on what they say they will do.
They will act nice and you will feel great.
No one will hurt you.
They won’t ever take from you.Mean People

So, perhaps it is time that I stop letting people, injuries and insults dethrone my God. Perhaps it is time that when they come, I let his Word reign. Perhaps it is time, I stand steady in truth, love and hope when I am inclined to move like a tossing punching bag.

I no longer want to take my eyes off of Jesus and place it on insults. Because when I do I move my hearts from the station that fills peace to one that sucks life. I drive to a mindset that will hurt me every time.

If I keep my eyes on God’s ways, he will give me the energy to move forward in them. To love the unlovable with them.

God knows, this is why he says:
Do not judge, so that you may not be judged. Mt. 7:1
Take the log out of your own eye to see clearly the speck in your neighbor’s. Mt. 7
Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Col. 3:12
Do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God. Mic. 6:8
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Mt. 11:28

A heart locked into the hole of God’s love and mercy will not fall down as easily. It will stay steady. It will remain effective. It will hold in hard times. It will open the door to his more, even when people treat us as less.

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here. 

Do Feelings Rule You?

Feelings Rule


It hits me with a sledgehammer a lot. Normally, it concentrates it’s whacks in one place. For me, it is in my mothering. So often, I ask myself: Am I fun enough? Caring enough? Playful enough? Instructional enough? I walk around trying my hardest, while, all at the same time, feeling at my neediest, my guiltiest.

Just the other day, my 4-year old son looked at me and said, “Mommy, I love daddy a little bit more than you.”

HUH? After all I do for you! (then the tsunami rushed over me sweeping away all value I have as a mother).

Do you, son?

Yes, but not a ton, just a little bit more.

May I ask you why?

Well, you look a little strange, mom. I mean, your body is more odd than mine. If you were like daddy and me, then I would love you the same.

And there you have it. While I was walking around defeated, hunched over and breathless at the thought of piles and mounds and landfills of failing, my son was just being a 4-year old in his 4-year old world. He was simply saying, it’s not you mommy, it’s just a phase.

How often do we look at things that have nothing to do with us
and immediately feelings of guilt?

In a way, we load up all the bad things about ourselves into a huge offering of inadequacy and put it before the feet of Jesus and say, “I stink. What are you going to do about it?”

Certainly we don’t want to do the opposite and act like this: “This is the way of an adulterous woman: She eats and wipes her mouth, and says, ‘I have done no wrong.’” Prov. 30:20

One unable to see their wrongs is one
unable to allow Jesus to make them right.

Yet, we have no need for this: When anyone is unfaithful to the LORD by sinning unintentionally in regard to any of the LORD’s holy things, they are to bring to the LORD as a penalty a ram from the flock, one without defect…It is a guilt offering. Lev. 5:15

Sacrificing our own animal instincts, unloved emotions and bad feelings
upon an altar of guilt is not a standard that God upholds anymore.

So, why do we keep doing it?

God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 2 Cor. 5:21

The one without defect is not found in our self.

The one without defect is not admonished of guilts
through a continuous offering of side effects.

The one without defect never has been and never will be us.

The one without defect is the one sledgehammered to a cross to abolish us from the painful rendering of guilt-laced feelings so long ago.

If we feel unsure. His blood says, “Do your best and trust me with the rest.”
If we reside in shame, his blood says, “Don’t hang out with lowly feelings, let me clean you through my healing.”
If we sin, his blood says, “Confess and know that I have covered that.”

What cause to celebrate! What need to rejoice! What once noosed us has no rope. What held us back is no longer the starting gate we can’t leap out of. What cripples us is let go in the free grace of Jesus’ love.

A love that says, “Live free. I will take you to where you need to go, trust me in the process. I don’t demand no flaws, just full trust.”

As I look at my Savior, I see full acceptance. And I see that what grips me so often is gripping his life out of me.

Do you live by the pulse of your feelings
or do you live by the pulse of God’s great heart beating only for you?

Lord, may our conscience align with your truth. Not the truth of our feelings, but only truth as only outlined by your Word. May we live full of the fact that you are not demanding perfection, but are aware of our imperfection until the day that you make it complete in Christ Jesus. More and more we are growing into you. Until then, we have all we need to live complete. Give us a fresh outpouring of your grace, so that we can know it and live it. Amen.

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.

Linking with #FiveMinuteFriday, #LiveFreeThursday and #DancewithJesus.

When We Dilute the Gospel of Grace

diluting the gospel

For a long time, I believed a lie which is threatening the very heartbeat of our church. It sneaks in like a slow poison and its symptoms are often loss of joy, endless business and little time for meaningful relationships.

It doesn’t announce itself with brazen warning signs or even seem evident in the sanctuary on Sunday morning. But it’s there, and it’s threatening the gospel message Christ was crucified to bring to the lost and weary.

It pollutes the hope of our Redeemer and plants the seed of doubt. It says we can never do enough, be enough or work enough. Our salvation is not free, but is bought with a price.

It’s the message of striving.

Most of the time it’s presented with splashes of so-called grace along with it, but at the core it’s the same.

Because grace cannot be watered down. The gospel doesn’t say it is by grace plus works that you are saved through faith. No, God doesn’t need us, but through his love he chooses to use us.

Come on over for the rest of the story as Abby McDonald hosts the #RaRaLinkup today at abby-mcdonald.com.

Get all Purposeful Faith blog posts by email – click here.