Purposeful Faith

Your Invitation to be Shameless & Fearless

stress less

(*Stay tuned for the invitation at the end of the blog post…)

___

I shouldn’t have said that. What’s wrong with me?

Have you ever wanted to rewind time to take back your words or actions? The second these words came out of my mouth, I regretted them. I didn’t do a good job. I shouldn’t have said this.

Ever been there? Have your past words, actions or mistakes ever come to life to plague you? Is it hard to let the past go?

In my situation, my husband overheard my whole conversation from the other room…

“What did you think? Did I do horrible?” I asked him.

His non-response and unenthusiastic answer said it all… “You gave it your best shot.”

My best shot?! I knew what that translated to: I did horrible. Absolutely rotten and horrible. I botched it up. I should have done better. Ugh.

Everything in me wanted to either hide, run, or freeze. I wasn’t sure what to do, all raw and exposed, probably, much like this biblical woman of old…

“The religion scholars and Pharisees led in a woman who had been caught in an act of adultery. They stood her in plain sight of everyone and said, “Teacher, this woman was caught red-handed in the act of adultery. Moses, in the Law, gives orders to stone such persons. What do you say?”  (John 8:3-5 MSG)

“Jesus, what do you say about…
this woman — the embarrassing mess-up?
this woman — the horrible one?
this woman — the guilty-as-charged person?
this woman — the bad, bad, girl?”

The woman stood there. Waiting. Crickets.

“Yes, Jesus, what do you have to say about her?!”

“When they kept on questioning him, (Jesus) straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” (Jo. 8:7 NIV)

All condemnations that wanted to stone her — were silenced. All accusation that wanted to pelt her — was stopped. Jesus set her free, called her to sin no more and she walked away, liberated — an entirely free woman. Jesus did that. He still does…

I wonder, are you free from the stoning of condemnation or are you still being hit? Are you free of yesterday’s baggage or are you still carrying it?

“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” (Jo. 8:36)

Friends, I still have moments of shame, for sure. But, one of the greatest miracles of my life is how shame — and fear — don’t rule me anymore. Through biblical ways of thinking, practical postures of heart, and authentic moments of prayer, God has freed me from mountains of shame and fear.

I feel He wants me to share my learnings, with you, so you too can walk free…

So, I am doing a 2-part, Breakthrough Workshop Event

De-stress during these Two Breakthrough Workshops, as we:

  • Identify the areas of condemnation, critique, or accusation that are limiting you.
  • Gain 5+ biblical, practical strategies to defeat shame, condemnation and fear in its tracks.
  • Share vulnerably and authentically with women who understand.
  • Receive releasing-prayer for new-found freedom in Christ-Jesus.
  • Discover proven-ways to maintain a fearless and faith-filled heart.
  • Renew your mind in biblical truth to live the abundant life Christ died for.

Sign up today.

***Plus, the Psalms have blessed me so much! The verses David have changed my heart and mind. You know? David was a man after God’s heart; allow his perspective to change your hearts. Registrants will also receive some of may favorites prayer-declarations from Psalms.

2 Days & Multiple-ways to Attend (via live/recorded ZOOM):
1. Live Breakthrough Workshop 1 (Practices to Defeat Shame) – Sat. Feb 5, 10:00 AM -12 PM ET
2. Live Breakthrough Workshop 2 (Maintaning Fearlessness) – Tue. Feb 8, 6:30-8:30 PM ET
3. Recorded version  – Both events will be sent post-event.
Register now!

The morning retreat cost is $19. I lowered the price (while covering costs), to help as many people attend as possible!

Testimonials:

“My life is changed.” -C.A.

“Kelly is a great encourager! Her greatest desire is that you should know who the Lord created you to be and who you are as a daughter.” – M.R.

“Kelly brought light into my very dark world by demonstrating what the true love of Jesus looks like!” – D.P.

“Kelly’s “realness”, no matter the cost has helped liberate me from all the masks I carried. Christ uses her to powerfully deliver freedom in every conversation.” – S.A.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Will there be a recorded version?
Yes. You do not have to attend “live”. I will send you the file post-event. For more information or if you have questions contact kelly@purposefulfaith.com
2. How will we have the meeting? 
The event will be hosted on Zoom. Please check your Zoom account for updates prior to the event. Lines will be muted.
3. Can I invite my friends to join this or is it only for Purposeful Faith readers?
Everyone is welcome! Forward this email.
For more information or if you have questions contact kelly@purposefulfaith.com. Ticket non-transferable/refundable.
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Be Kind to Yourself

stir it up

Frankly, I wanted to bust out out of the gate this year! I will exercise every morning – perhaps run 2-miles/day. I will connect more with the kids and do all the special projects on their hearts! I will eat healthier.

Then reality hit. This week, I missed all my work outs, I didn’t do any projects with my son, and yesterday, I had chips for breakfast.

What do we do when we meant to do good — but, didn’t?

It’s easy to get discouraged when we fail. Or, demotivated at our lack of follow through. Here, we may wonder, “Is God less impressed with me?”

We’ve probably all had moments like this.

But, the real question isn’t — where are we and why are we doing this? The real question is: how do we get back up again?

“You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Mt. 22:39 ESV)

Jesus tells us here, we don’t only love others, we must first show love towards ourselves. How can one give what they don’t own?  How can one impart a gift that doesn’t belong to them?

Loving ourselves is integral to loving others well. We receive love to give it.

Love is first kind to its own heart.
Love is patient in its own progress.
Love is full of grace as it learns how to work and when things don’t go exactly right.
Love is able to let go of yesterday for a better today.

Love starts in us.

“Love is patient, love is kind…it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.” (1 Cor. 13:4, 5 NIV)

Do you extend yourself patience or do you demand you be improved right now!? Are you kind to yourself in your mind or do you berate yourself all the time? Are you constantly analyzing what you did wrong or do you let go of the records of wrongs you hold against yourself?

More than the arrival at a given-destination is our growth as we go along our journey with God. Be kind, as Jesus would be kind to you. Be patient, as God is. Be consoling, as the Spirit would have you be. Indeed there is always a growth opportunity — we all have those — but the greatest of all things is: love.

Today, how can you think lovingly towards yourself?

Prayer: Father God, you are love. You are loving, patient, kind, and compassionate towards us. Empower us this very day to be this way towards ourself. We need your equipping and enablement to do this. We rely on you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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Go with God

“Mom, I don’t want to go outside and get the present out of the car.”

My son resisted. It was dark. Taking this action felt scary. Who knows what looms outside in the middle of the night? Who knows if he could see? Who knows if it’s safe?

“Son,” I essentially said, “It’s morning time. You’re safe. The son is coming up.”

Many of us feel afraid to take action because — we don’t know what is “out there”. What is on the other side of our current situation. We don’t know if we’re safe, or if we’ll get hurt, or if bad things loom ahead. We resist change because we fear what may be on the other side. Some, stay in bad because they fear worse.

What action has God called you to take? Does He want you to change a bad habit? Are you called to move somewhere or start something? Is there a relationship that needs a new approach?

Faith is evidenced by actions, or works. These things are the proof in our pudding.

“…Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” (James 2:18)

I want people to know me as a person of great faith, don’t  you?

People see our faith by what we do, not what we say.

I have talked a lot of talk, but, friends — may I tell you? I’ve been scared in past years. I haven’t pushed into all God has for me. Some days I’ve felt His Word or His heart nudge me a direction, but I’ve resisted, I’ve questioned, I’ve discounted, I’ve delayed. Frankly, I’ve rebelled. Fear stopped me.  I repent of all this.

There’s a new day dawning…

And, if I’ve learned one thing it is — we can’t defeat fear or inaction on our own. Just as my son knew that the light was greater than the dark, we must also know that our God is greater than anything that looms beyond us…

Here, we can help ourselves to take action — or to make movement — by:

  1. Remembering the size of our God.
    Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit. (Ps. 147:5)
  2. Knowing God’s strength and leading is enough to help us.
    “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” (Is. 41:10)
  3. We can and should lean on Him as we go.
    “O my God, I trust, lean on, rely on, and am confident in You. Let me not be put to shame or [my hope in You] be disappointed; let not my enemies triumph over me.” (Ps. 25:2 AMPC)
  4. Declaring & depending on Christ’s victory.
    For [a]everyone born of God is victorious and overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has conquered and overcome the world—our [continuing, persistent] faith [in Jesus the Son of God]. (1 Jo. 5:4 AMP)

We cannot work without God. We cannot go without His help and power. We cannot walk in courage without His power. God is the God who saves, heals, helps, leads, loves — it is not us at work, but Christ at work in and through us.

Prayer: Father, many of us have been called and there is a portion of us who are scared. Give us courage. Give us hope. Give us strength to persevere. We need you more than we need this life itself. We ask for all the power and the strength we need to rely on you, to lean on you, to trust in you. Equip us for every good work and help us to see it through. In Jesus’ mighty name. Amen.


Is Something Wrong With Me?

Have you ever started a recipe only to find that you are missing one ingredient?

This can be frustrating. You don’t have all you need to make your dream dish. You’re left short. You can’t proceed forward — or so you think.

Some of us feel this way in faith… We feel we keep coming up short. We don’t have giftings others have. We don’t pray like Mary Sue. We feel weak. We can’t overcome that one sin. We keep fearing and worrying. We are missing  one ingredient, our breakthrough to peace and joy.  Grr…

Ever been there? Have you ever felt like you don’t have all you need? That something is wrong with you?

Friends, I come to you to tell you: There is nothing wrong with you.

Scripture says, “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness (2 Peter 1:3; NIV).”

His power — has given everything we need for life (in the here and now). His power has given us all the godliness (righteousness and overcoming) we need. This is HUGE. We have it in-hand. Here. Right now.

We are not lacking or sinking, as the enemy would love for us to believe. We have the ingredient we need – Christ’s power. Through our knowing God and by his super abundant and extravagant glory and goodness — we have what we need. It’s all available to you. Just believe.

Don’t allow the enemy liar to lie anymore and to tell you otherwise!

Overcoming is far more easy when you believe this truth — is truth. When you take God’s Word as His Word.

It, then, becomes as easy as getting on Google and searching, “Canola oil replacement.” Here you find jazzy solutions display, like Apple Sauce or Maple Syrup.

When you believe you have all you need- and that there are resources available – you will, by God’s goodness, uncover new paths and new ways. Your hope in the Lord will open up new things, new sight, new paradigms. This concept is huge. Do not read this fast and pass it by. Some of you (myself included), need to more greatly understand this.

I love you all. Merry Christmas to my fabulous friends that I would love to meet in person one day! Big hugs. I love you all so much. I pray many blessings on you this season, in particular the joy of the Lord, In Jesus’ Mighty-to-Save Name. Amen.

Let’s pray: Father, I break off the lie that I don’t have what I need. I repent of believing a lie of the enemy. I submit to you and your word. I have all I need for godliness and righteousness in Christ Jesus. I am loved. I am helped. I am equipped. You are the Shepherd of my soul (1 Pet. 2:25). I thank you. I praise you. I lay down my way to find yours. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

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The Huge Mess I Found Myself In

I never knew sparkles could do so much damage…

Well, I take that back. . . I did know that sparkles could do damage, which was part of my stress to begin with. I didn’t want sparkles all over my house and in every floor crevice and stuck deep in the dark recesses of my rug. I didn’t want sparkles tracked everywhere by my shoe and stuck to my hair and dangling off my eyebrow, but lo and behold, this is exactly what happened.

The second I got home from being out, my kids implored, “C’mon mom! C’mon mom, craft-time.”

I wanted to say, “I need a few minutes. I need to pray; sparkles stress me out,” but my son was already dumping the pint-sized jug of sparkles on the table. And, there I was — wanting to be the best mom I could be.

Ignoring my insides, I dove in head-first, “Okay, kids, here mom comes.”

At the table, my insides were throwing a tantrum: It’s going to be a mess. The table will be ruined. The craft time won’t be fun.  And, worst of all, what if these crafts end up looking horrible and none of them sell at my kids craft show?

The idea of a big-, horrible-, icky-mess was plaguing me. And, frankly, I didn’t know how to control it, fix it, or manage it — while sparkles began to get dropped outside the foil, then on my white dining chairs, then into the glue pile that was supposed to have no sparkles in it if we wanted the other ornaments to look good.

Everything. felt. completely. out. of. control.
My insides were anxious.
I started barking orders.
My kids were having no fun.
My son went to his room and said, “Maybe I should just do the crafts with dad.”
And, my whole idea of fun — went kaput.

Inhale. Exhale.

Friend, like me, are you ever afraid of messes? Does the idea of mess ever create stress? Does the stress tend to make a bigger mess?

Galatians 5:1 says, “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.”

Christ already won my freedom. Yet, the second I start worrying about things being perfect is the second I yoke to stress.  It is the fear of messiness actually welcomes anxiousness. Any obligation where we rely on man rather than God becomes a burden, not a blessing.

I can’t enjoy sparkles with my kids when I fear mess. I can’t be armed up in prayer, when I feel obligated to be ready at man’s notice. I can’t enjoy the moment, when I’m fearing the outcome.

How do you need to let go today? Are you seeking to control something or someone? Or, are you afraid of feelings you can’t manage?

You know, Jesus entered the mess of this world to save the likes of you and me. He wasn’t so afraid of the mess, that He couldn’t enter in to it. While we were yet a sinner, Christ died for us. He sees everything we face. He is not as afraid of it, as we are.

He has an answer. He has a door of escape. He is a ready-help in time of trouble. What if we were to turn towards Him and ask for all the grace we need in our times of trouble?

Maybe, then, we’d throw sparkles up in the air and dance under them!

Prayer: Father, I am letting go of ___. I can’t do it alone. I need you. Help me. Give me grace, abundant grace. Show me the way. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 

 


Losing Something or Someone You Love

stir it up

I lost a brother in Christ today.

I so badly wanted him to live. I prayed while he was in the hospital. I hoped from my bedroom. I fought with deep words and loud cries. I believed he would remain on Earth, but, this morning, I got a text saying…

“He passed.”

My friend is gone now.

This sits heavy. Life is short.

The veil between here and there is thinner than it appears. We never know our time. We never know when the curtains close here. Yet, when a loved one faces death, it’s a stark reminder to us who live — that the only time we have  — is now! Right now. This very moment is a gift from God and the fact that we have it is HUGE.

This is our moment on His grand-stage. Heaven watches (Heb. 12:1). There is a purpose to our existence. Our words matter. Our love matters. Our prayers matter. This is our time to impact the world for Jesus. God assigned us to this hour, in this season of His appointed world. He has a plan and a use for our existence. We are not just bidding time, or wasting away until our crossover day; there is His will to see forth. There is His pleasure to attend to. There is His glory to cast.

You know, I can’t say why my prayers didn’t get answered as it pertains to my friend, only God knows, but I do know this — God still answers prayers and faith still moves mountains. There’s no arguing about that. God is true and His Word is more truth than my thoughts. Period.

Maybe some of you have lost someone or something… Maybe some of you don’t know the why’s or the how’s… Maybe some of you feel a heaviness about what didn’t happen…

God knows what He is doing.

Sometimes our theology need stop right here. Eve (of Adam and Eve) tried to figure out the whole world and the details of not only evil, but also of good, as she bit that apple — and look where that got her (and all of us for that matter…)?

We don’t always have to know. But, we can know this: we serve a good God.
We don’t always have to understand. But, we can continually stand under His grace.
God is good to one and all; everything he does is soaked through with grace.” (Ps. 145:9 MSG)

God is good.

“Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!” (Ps. 34:8 ESV)
The safest place for our searching heart is under God’s care.

These days, it’s easy to get caught up in — should I use this bow or that for the Christmas wreath? Should I get this gift for the kids? Oh, what horrible news there is online.

My dear friends, this world is like a mirage. But, one thing remains, God — along with faith, hope and love. These will never pass away.

“Now we see but a dim reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love; but the greatest of these is love.  (1 Cor. 13:12-13)

This season, let’s press past the mundane and into something more transcendent and everlasting…faith in God and His character, hope that He is who He says He is and love for all those around us. These things will not fail us. They produce no regrets in life, well-lived.

Faith, hope and love are the wisest life-investments we can make. They last.

And, as it pertains to my friend? He was full of these three things — faith, hope and love. This I know — He is not lost — He is a BIG gain to heaven.

Prayer: Father, fill us with faith to trust on you, to believe you and to trust your character. Give us hope, like we have never had before. Even more, we want to love you and others in wild and incredible ways. We ask for you to fill us with your Holy Spirit so that we may gush forth the fullness of you, everywhere we go. We thank you that we are alive. We thank you that you have good plans for us. We lean on you today. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


How Much Thanks Matters

I nearly remember standing on that shiny car dealership floor next to my dad. I turned to him and said, “Dad, can I?”

“If you want this car, you can have it, Kelly.” He said.

I jumped up and down and up and down. It was the car I always wanted! It was a convertible! It was amazing! It had red leather interior!

Now, it wasn’t my dad buying me the car. So, I put as little down as possible and took on debt for as many years as they would let me, but, at least I had it!. I had the car I always wanted! I could ride in the warm California air with the top down, hair flying. I’d feel free.

When I rode in that car I felt like a million bucks — for a week. Then, after that, I felt like a hundred dollars for a time, until the fanfare wore off and it was just any old car.

You know, they say those who win the lottery are happy at first, and then, not so much later… Why? Because they adapt to their winnings — and what felt fresh and fanciful before, loses luster.

Have you ever been there? Have you ever gotten something that you always wanted, but then it  lost its wonder? Did it hold power and then lose value in your life?

If I’ve come to anything, it’s this: anything, apart from Jesus, nothing really satisfies, at least, not for the long run. But, Jesus? He will fill every part of us, He will quench thirst, He will satisfy every longing, if we let Him…

For instance, in John 4, Jesus met a someone at a well. This woman was from a different class. She was a Samaritan. She was searching for something, although after five husbands she still hadn’t found it.

“Jesus said (to her), ‘Would you give me a drink of water?’ (John 4:7-9 MSG)

The Samaritan woman, taken aback, asked, “How come you, a Jew, are asking me, a Samaritan woman, for a drink?” (Jews in those days wouldn’t be caught dead talking to Samaritans.)” (John 4:10)

Jesus answered, “If you knew the generosity of God and who I am, you would be asking me for a drink, and I would give you fresh, living water.” (John 4:10 MSG)

“The generosity of God.”
If we knew the generosity of God, we’d ask God for what we thirst for.
If we knew the generosity of God, we’d ask — being prepared to receive.
If we knew the generosity of God, we’d ultimately find the refreshment and gratification we’re looking for.

What a concept!

“Knowing the generosity” of God — provokes our asking — then, we posture ourselves for receiving the very thing we long for.

This is further evidenced in the Luke 17, the story where 10 people got healed and only 1 came back to thank Jesus…

“Then one of them, upon seeing that he was cured, turned back, [c]recognizing and thanking and praising God with a loud voice;  And he fell prostrate at Jesus’ feet, thanking Him [over and over]. And he was a Samaritan.

Then Jesus asked, Were not [all] ten cleansed? Where are the nine?

Was there no one found to return and to [d]recognize and give thanks and praise to God except this alien?

 And He said to him, Get up and go on your way. Your faith (your trust and confidence that spring from your belief in God) has restored you to health.” (Luke 17:15-19)

Thanking is receiving more. Thanking comes from understanding that the generosity of God is abundant. Thanking is directly linked to healing and restoration.

How has the generosity of God been so gracious to you? How can you, today, say, “Thank You”? What do you need to go about asking God for this very moment?

Prayer: (Take it from here…)


Honoring Your Husband

we all want

This Facebook message stopped me. . .

Sharrona Watson posted on Facebook:

“I used to be a bit hard headed when it came to my husband. Between temper tantrums and straight I DON’T WANT TO HEAR YOU, I was a mess.

Why listen to him when I can listen to myself? Besides, I had this subconscious belief that my Holy Spirit was much “Holy-ER” than his.  I know I’m not the only wife that has felt this way.

God started dealing with me…

I woke up one day and the side of my face was a lil swollen. I knew it had something to do with a tooth. No biggie, pop a few motrins & antibiotics I should be good to go on this women’s retreat I was excited to go on.

Why on earth did Randy say “no”? He wanted me to go to Urgent Care. And miss my trip??? gosh darnit, that strong-willed being in me wanted to fight, but I knew I needed to listen.

I went to Urgent Care…. they immediately sent me to the Emergency Room, my face tripled in size and the pain was so severe. They immediately took me back and sprung into action, cutting open my gums. They used this tool that extracted a large amount of infection from me. It was painful. The E.R doctor told me had I not gone in the infection could have gone to my brain as well as shut my airway — both could have resulted in my death. Can you imagine me getting to heaven and the Lord saying “All you needed to do was listen to Randy”?

Submitting to our husband’s can save our lives. Whether it be physical, mental, spiritual etc… Sometimes they KNOW MORE THAN US!!”

This post made me think… Do I honor my husband’s wisdom or do I think my wisdom is best? Do I know what I’m doing or do I hear his heart? Do I heed his advice or go my own way?

Various times, my husband’s wisdom has felt off-putting…offensive, even.

Once he told me to “keep quiet”, as it pertained to a specific issue. But, I didn’t want to keep quiet, I wanted — TO SPEAK! Yet, it was only after following his wisdom that something amazing happened: by keeping my mouth shut, God opened a door. A major door.

God’s ways are not our ways. Wisdom doesn’t always sound like our voice or outlook. Yet, that doesn’t mean it is trash.  God speaks through people, even husbands.

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD. (Is. 55:8)

We don’t always need to understand — before we trust. We don’t have to make sense of everything — before we follow. Who in their right mind can understand the vastness and completeness of God? If you waited to know everything, before following Jesus, you’d be nowhere.

Do you need to trust your husband more? You know, there is no perfect husband, but we do serve a perfect God who defends, who protects and who leads. We can trust our Maker, to make our path straight, as we honor our husbands.

I know — doing this — isn’t always easy, so let’s pray…

Prayer: Father, I want to thank you for Sharrona Watson’s post on Facebook. It reminded me that I don’t know it all. I don’t have every answer. I don’t know my own way all the time. Thank you, God, that you have united me together with my husband, on purpose and for a purpose. When we are in unity, there is power in that. Please teach me, Father, what it is to honor and to submit to my husband’s wisdom. Please help me to trust you, when I do this. I want to learn  to honor you by honoring him.  Thank you, God, that I am growing in relationship and marriage. Thank you God, that you will help me. Thank you God, that I am not defenseless. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

I was going to put Sharrona’s bio and picture here…but you know what? Instead, let’s pray for her!

Prayer for Sharrona: Father, please grant Sharrona the deep desires of hear heart. Father, we pray for breakthrough in her life, as she is calling out for. Hear our prayer today. We ask for swift answers. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Down, But Not Out.

good father

Do you feel down? Maybe you are pressed on every side by worries or fear? Maybe you are flustered by what is happening all around you? Maybe people are not being agreeable or hopeful?

We’ve all been there… Life has hard times. Certain days, the pain is potent, the tears are heavy and hope feels flimsy.

Paul, the apostle, understood hardship. Paul, after the resurrection of Jesus, received lashes upon lashes. He was beaten with rods. He was pelted with stones. He was 3 times shipwrecked. He was constantly on the move. He was “in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers”. (2 Cor. 11:26)  He “labored and toiled” and went “without sleep”. He knew “hunger and thirst” and went “without food.” He was “cold and naked.” (2 Cor. 11:27-28) 

Yet, Paul kept going…
Yet, Paul kept believing…
Yet, Paul kept enduring…

…all by the grace of God. It’s amazing isn’t it?

This is the power of our God to sustain us, to keep us, to help us keep going. If He did it for Paul — He can do it for us. If He did it for me (when I felt like giving up on life, when I felt like quitting), He can do it for us.

Where do you need God’s help to keep going?

My friend, no matter what we face today — no matter how bad it looks — Christ offers strength to overcome. Christ grants power to keep going. Christ has a plan of escape. Christ is The Door and The Way. Just as Paul made it through we overcome as trust Christ for the victory.

The Author and The Perfector of our faith is always authoring and perfecting our life, our hearts and our path. He knows. Crooked pictures become craft projects in His hands. Suddenly, through His finishing, something new is created, only it is 1000x better than before.

God makes all things beautiful in HIS time. (see: Ec. 3:11)

We see a mess; He sees opportunity. We see annoyance; He sees new patience growing. We see long roads; He sees endurance and perseverance in our lives like never before. I believe, God treasures our heart  more than our immediate demands. The wonder is, He usually takes care of those demands too, in the long run. This is what I’ve found, at least.

He’s never once let me down. He’s brought me through an eating disorder, depression, illness, health scares, relationship drama, fear, control and so much more. He shows up. His power has been enough to save me time-and-time again. He is that wonderful.

We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair;  persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.”  (2 Cor. 4:8-12 NIV)

We will make it as we trust Him. We will stand strong as we lean on Him. We will come out the other side, better, stronger and wiser as we stay in His love. No, we will not be forsaken. Never. He loves us.

Prayer: Father, pour out your love on every reader, in profound ways. Let every person know how much you care. In Jesus’ name. Amen.


Things are Not As You Think

“Oh no! Why did you do that? Why did you bring your drinks downstairs?” My mom groaned.

Apparently, my kids spilled lemonade on her brand new carpet.

“But, Nana, we have water and we didn’t spill anything!” They said.

“Yes, you did. I see that big splotch on the ground.” My mom pointed at a big dark circle on the ground.

“But, Nana, that’s only a shadow.”

The closer mom got, the more she could see. The kids were right. What my mom was stressing about was only a shadow, not a spill.

How often do we see things that are only shadows? How often do we misconstrue words into something that another is not even saying? How often do we perceive what people are thinking, when they are not? How often does what we worry about not even come true? How often do our perceptions become projections onto others?

Jesus is wise.

Instead of worry, Jesus essentially says, “Hey you! Don’t run ahead… Don’t get ahead of yourself, or me, for that matter.”

“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” (Mt. 6:34)

We never really know what we face until we come face-to-face with the reality of it. That’s why we can’t make a mole into cancer. Or, a child’s actions into a proclamation of their life. Or, a husband’s lack of timeliness as a determination of who He is or, who we are. Or, our yesterday into a predictor of our today.

We do not know — until Jesus says it is time for us to know. There is no benefit to trying to figure things out, either.

“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” (Mt. 6:27)

When we run ahead of God, we run out of grace. We run out from under grace’s cover. This is why worry, fear and anxiety mount. But, to stay with the Holy Spirit, in the present moment — is to keep peace and to walk in the ever-present help of God.

How is your mind prone to run ahead? Where do you lose peace?

What might God want you to know in your here-and-now?

Consider: Has God ever let you down? Has He ever stopped helping you? What did you worry about 3 years ago? How are things going now.

Take an opportunity to: Thank God. Release your worry to Him. Repent of fear. Renew your heart and mind in Christ Jesus, for He cares for you.

Things are not always as they appear. Darkness tries to fool us sometimes. Things are not as dim as the enemy wants to make them look. Raise up your head to see — where your light comes from — and you may get a whole new outlook as you do.

Prayer: Father, I know where my help comes from. My help comes from the Maker, the Creator and the Author of Life. Forgive me for looking left and right, into the past and way-ahead into the future. Holy Spirit is here with me, right-here, right now. I want to walk with you and talk with you. I want to be united with you, without stress and burdens. Will you comfort me and help me? I trust you. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

 


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