Live A Life Worthy of the Calling

You Have Received.
Ephesians 4:1- 7
I want to first apologize for missing the last couple of days. I unfortunately allowed myself to get too busy. 
I like this passage because it addresses the fact that I am called to live a life worthy of the calling I have received and reveals what that looks like.  
2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. For the sake of unity, I am to strive to be humble and gentle as well as patient and bearing with one another. This, for me, is to think of myself less and others more in order to be patient and bear with others. I am to come along side and be there for a friend or family member even if it means letting something else go. 
 Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. This ties in well with Romans 12:18 which tells me that as far as it depends on me to live at peace with everyone. Peace brings about unity. Peace for me means giving up the right to be right and a willingness to work for a win-win situation.  
There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. I am to remember that there is one body and one Spirit. All in all there is one God and Father over all to which I am called to one hope. God has got it covered. There is no need for fuss.
But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it. This sums it all up. Grace given to me by Christ makes it all possible. I just have to be a willing participant in what God is doing in me through Jesus and the power of His Holy Spirit. 
I stand amazed at the power of God working in me. I relate better to my family now. I look to God for my approval and I need no longer fear what others think of me or what they can do to me. My God is greater and is able to do more than I can possibly ask. What an awesome God I serve.


God has the power to do great things. Seek Him and He will show you!


Prayer: Dear God, who art in heaven, thank you for showing me how You want me to live my life and bringing about the changes in me. May others see Jesus in me. Amen.
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Connecting the Dots

Romans 5:1-5
Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
Looking back on chapter four, it addresses the faith of Abraham being counted as righteousness for our sake, for it will be counted as to us who believe in Him who raised from the dead, Jesus our Lord. Being justified by our faith we now have peace with God and we also receive grace. We are to rejoice in the hope of the glory of God. 
We can rejoice in our sufferings, too, because we have been justified and thereby have peace and a hope knowing that our sufferings serves a purpose to produce endurance (long suffering) which in turns produces character (Christ-likeness) which in turns produces hope (greater trust and confidence in God). This hope in God does not put us to shame because God fills our hearts with His great love through the power of the Holy Spirit. If we keep this in our thoughts, then maybe, just maybe, we could take delight in our sufferings for they are bringing about the good that God desires for us. Draw strength from God and rejoice!
Resting in this reassurance makes it possible to withstand the various trails that come our way. Remembering that there is nothing that can ever separate us from His love. There is nothing you nor I can do to add to it or to take away from it. It is real and it is forever. 
Faith+Grace=Justification=Peace+hope to equip us to patiently endure times of trails therefore developing character and greater hope as God’s love fills our hearts.
Therefore I can say! Come what may I will be okay for my God is with me for He will not leave me nor forsake me. I have peace with God and in my heart. I will do my best to rejoice in whatever trials come my way for God’s love is greater.


Prayer: Almighty God, I rejoice in You for I know that You are with me and I will be okay no matter what comes my way. Great is Your love. May I rest in it all the days of my life. Ame.
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God’s Law in My Heart

Psalm 119:165 KJV
Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.
Colossians 3:16 NIV
Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.
 Psalm 119:11 NIV
I have hidden your word in my heart
    that I might not sin against you. 
There is much promised to me as a believer if I meditate on and hide God’s word in my heart. I find comfort in the storms of life, encouragement to fight off despair, and hope for better days. He tells me of His love for me and about His character which is beyond words. He gives me grace to move forward to reconcile relationships. I knew all this as a child but better yet, I have experienced it for myself as I have grown older and spent time studying His word. Now I want to tell others of things that my God has done. He truly rewards those who seek to know Him more, and He is more than able to do all that I can ask and exceedingly more. God is everything He says He is and so much more. I am a finite being trying to comprehend an infinite God. I can only scratch the surface of His majesty. I see it in the sunset and sunrise but even better in the face of a newborn baby. I rejoice for this is the day the Lord has made.
Prayer: Dear God, praise Your Holy Name, for You have done marvelous things. Thank You, Father, for giving us Your Son and Your Word so that we may know You more. Amen. 
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Call on Him as Long as I Live

Psalm 116:1-2
I love the Lord, for He heard my voice; He heard my cry for mercy. Because He turned His ear to me, I will call on Him as long as I live. 
He hears and answers my prayers. He is righteous in all His ways and faithful in all He does. He is near to all who call on Him in truth. He fulfills the desires of those who fear Him; He hears their cry and saves them (Psalm 145:17-19). What a comfort it is to know that He is near to me and will hear me when I call out to Him. He has already answered so many of my prayers and given me my heart’s desire. He richly blesses those who call on Him (Romans 10:12).
I am beginning a new faith journey. I am taking a step of faith to reconnect with someone dear to me. I am trusting God to go before me and soften our hearts and open new lines of communication between us. I am excited but scared at the same time. I do not wish to cause harm nor do I want to be hurt also. God is in the business of healing relationships. I rejoice in the possibilities. God is good! 
For there is nothing my God cannot do for you or me! To God be the glory for all that He has done and yet, to do.
Prayer: Dear God in heaven, all things are possible with You. Please go before me and prepare our hearts so that we can begin anew. Give me strength and the words I need to say and responses that are from You and not from me. Pour Your grace out upon me. Amen.
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Let’s Talk About Hope

Find Rest My Soul, 
Put Your Trust in God 
Be strong and take heart, all you who hope in the Lord. Psalm 31:24 
The Lord delights in those who fear Him, who put their hope in His unfailing love. Psalm147:11 

Dictionary.com defines hope (verb with a subject) 1) To look forward to with desire and confidence; 2) to believe, desire, or trust. I am called to put my trust and confidence in God’s unfailing love. For I am saved by hope but I do not hope in that which I can see for one does not hope in what one sees. I place my trust , confidence, and desire in the God who created me, raised Jesus from the dead, and is creator of all things. He keeps His promises. I like how Lamentations 3:24-26 reads;

24 I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion;
    therefore I will wait for Him.”

25 The Lord is good to those whose hope is in Him,
    to the one who seeks Him;
26 it is good to wait quietly
    for the salvation of the Lord.
 
Without one is prone to despair and hopelessness. This is not a healthy option. Jesus brings hope to those in despair and without hope. I desire to be Jesus’ messenger of hope. Putting one’s hope in man is risky business because more times than not it will let you down. God is worthy of one’s hope for He sent His son into the world to bring us hope. 
 
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy He has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 1 Peter 1:3-5

 May you also put your hope in God and find rest for you soul.
My Prayer: Dear Father in heaven, thank You for giving me reason to put my hope in You. Help me to be Your messenger of hope. Amen. 

 

 
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Without a Doubt God is Good!

I Know This from My Own Experiences
I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken. Psalm 16:8
 
 I know that you have heard the phrase, “God is good.” Yet, inside you might find this hard to comprehend with so much going on in your life. I know this to be true though my experiences would give me cause to say otherwise. God has given me eyes to see my life in a different light. As Big Daddy Weave’s song, ‘Different Light,’ reads, “there is no after without before.” God had a purpose and plan for everything that has happened in my life. I see now that I could not be where I am today if I had not gone through all that I did. After all, God works all things out for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28). Yes, it was not easy but I was never alone and He was patient with me as I began to heal; which He was responsible for bringing about in me. He is in the processing of making me His light to the world. 
In today’s Jesus Calling, He reminds me that He is in the business of healing broken hearts, broken bodies, broken minds, broken lives, and broken relationships. Abiding Him gains me healing but if I need or want more all I have to do is ask. James 4:2 b tells me that I have not because I ask not. Yet, I need to ask with the right motive. So I am asking God for healing in a relationship. I have seen Him do it with others so I know that it is possible. All I need to do is trust Him with it.
God has unique ways in which He brings about healing. For me, He does it through my friends that He has blessed me. Thank you to the friends that I have had the pleasure of spending time with these past two days. God’s blessings to you all.
To God be the glory!
My Prayer: Dear God, Hear my prayer, I know that Your are my healer and that all I need to do is ask for more. Please heal my relationship with someone so dear to me. All to Your glory Lord. Amen.
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The Bible Will Endure

The Word of God Endures Forever
Using my Thompson Chain Reference Bible, I found that the Bible was written with a purpose. Things will come and go but the Word of God will endure forever.
  To Authenticate the Divinity of Christ – John 20:31 But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
  To give Hope to Men –  Romans 15:4 For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.
  To Relate Human Experience as a Warning – 1 Corinthians 10:11
 These things happened to them as examples and were written down as warnings for us, on whom the culmination of the ages has come.
  To give Knowledge of Eternal Life – 1 John 5:13  I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life.
This is only just a little of what the Bible tells us about the Word of God. Its purpose is most important. Pointing us to Christ and telling us of eternal life. Once you have this then you desire to know more of God’s word. 
I recently read about how late night TV is changing from sarcasm to joy and hope. People want to have hope again but true hope comes from knowing Jesus. I desire to be His messenger of hope. Jesus gives hope to the hopeless and I need to be first filled with it and allow Jesus to work through me to be His messenger. I need to ask Jesus to take away my judgmental spirit and give my eyes to see people as He does and not as I would. 

I remember an old saying, “That’s better than sliced bread,” meaning that something was quite significant. God’s Word is just that; better than sliced bread. It has the answers to life’s questions. 
Jeremiah 33:3
 ‘Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.’
God waits for us to call out to Him. He knows and wants what is best for us. Yet, He is not pushy and will not force us to receive His Son. He desires for us to want Him more. He has revealed so much to me. Each year, I see the changes that He is making in me and I stand in amazement. 

My Prayer: Dear God, hear my prayer, I desire to be Your messenger of hope but first I have to let go of my perceptions of how things ought to be. Help me, Lord, to see people through Your eyes and not my own. Amen.
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Sing to the Lord, Praise His Name;

I Will Sing to the Lord
For My Heart is Glad!
 My heart is indeed glad. As I have reported last week, my extended family has increased by one beautiful little girl. I was singing to her in the shower today of God’s love for her and that He has a plan for her. I was singing my thanks to God for this new life. I prayed blessings over her and her mother for I know that my God will do exceedingly more than I can possibly ask for. I read Psalm 96 and it is so beautiful and it reflects how my heart feels. So here it is;
1 Sing to the Lord a new song;
    sing to the Lord, all the earth.
Sing to the Lord, praise His name;
    proclaim His salvation day after day.
Declare His glory among the nations,
    His marvelous deeds among all peoples.

For great is the Lord and most worthy of praise;
    He is to be feared above all gods.
For all the gods of the nations are idols,
    but the Lord made the heavens.
Splendor and majesty are before Him;
    strength and glory are in His sanctuary.

Ascribe to the Lord, all you families of nations,
    ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name;
    bring an offering and come into His courts.
Worship the Lord in the splendor of His[a] holiness;
    tremble before Him, all the earth.
10 Say among the nations, “The Lord reigns.”
    The world is firmly established, it cannot be moved;
    He will judge the peoples with equity.

11 Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad;
    let the sea resound, and all that is in it.
12 Let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them;
    let all the trees of the forest sing for joy.
13 Let all creation rejoice before the Lord, for He comes,
    He comes to judge the earth.
He will judge the world in righteousness
    and the peoples in His faithfulness.
May your heart be glad and may there be a song in your heart also; for the Lord is good and His mercy endures forever.

Footnotes:

  1. Psalm 96:9 Or Lord with the splendor of

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Higher are God’s Ways

Than Mine & His Thoughts than Mine.
Isaiah 55:8-9
 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
    neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord.
“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
    so are my ways higher than your ways
    and my thoughts than your thoughts.”
As I sit here this morning, I am humbled because God has made me realize that His thought and ways are higher than mine. I am thankful that God is not like me. If God were to treat me the way that I have treated those I love, just this morning, I would be hurt. God does not tell me to ‘go away I am busy right now’ when I seek Him nor does He limit His time with me. Father, forgive me.
But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious,
    slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.
Psalm 86:15
God is patient, gracious, and abounding in mercy and I am not, however, He has the power to help me to do better. I, first, have to admit that I am not God and that I am powerless to control my tendency to do the wrong thing. If I will voluntarily submit to every change that God wants make in my life and humbly ask Him to remove my character defects, this is where true change will happen because I matter to Him and He has the power to help me change. Now I need to evaluate all my relationships and make amends to those I have hurt just this morning. God is faithful and just and will forgive me of all my sin if I confess and repent by choosing to turn to Him.
My Prayer: Father God, I am thankful that You are not like me and that You have the power to help me make changes. Grant me the courage to change the things I can and the serenity to accept the things I cannot change. Amen. 
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A Harsh Truth

God Will Repay with Affliction 
Those Who Afflict You
2 Thessalonians 1:5-12

It is easy to get discouraged when reading or watching the news. So much confusion, chaos, and disorder out in the world. But reading 2 Thessalonians 1, I am reminded that God is in control and sin will not go unpunished. He is very mindful of what is going on and He will repay with affliction and when Jesus is revealed from heaven He will inflict vengeance on those who do not know God and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. This is a harsh truth.
For this reason, it is vital to share Jesus with those we love and at every opportunity. The gospel is the sweetest message that gives life to the lifeless and hope to the hopeless. I need to remind myself that I am nothing apart from Jesus and it is because of Him, that I live and move and have my being. I am always in need of a Savior. God will make a way and all I need to do is be obedient to His call.
My God is a mighty God and worthy to be praised for He loved me so much that He sent His only Son, Jesus Christ, to die a death that was meant for me, that  believing in Him and who sent Him I might have a newness of life as well as eternal life when I die.  
My Prayer: Father God in heaven, I rejoice in knowing that You are in control. There is nothing that You know not of and You will bring judgement on the day Your Son, Jesus, is revealed. Give me Your words that I might tell others of You so that they, too, may have what I have, blessed assurance. Amen.
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