Miracles

I have to wonder how often we overlook God’s miracles.  Not only that, but how often do we not believe enough to actually ask and open up the door of opportunity for that miracle to be performed by Him?

This week my church organized an event that consisted of corporate fasting and prayer for the week and three nights of what they referred to as revival services. Each night was ended with people seeking physical healing coming forward and other attendees, regular everyday believers, laying hands on them and praying for miracles.

I began the week (Sunday) in a small group meeting being asked the question, “What are you believing God for?” Surprisingly I didn’t have a clue what I’d be seeking Him for personally, so that’s what I prayed for on Monday, “God, what should I believe You for?”  By the second morning (Tuesday) I had an answer settled on my heart, some specific prayers for God’s guidance as a mom and for my son and prayers for overcoming struggles with depression, for healing.

The first two nights of services (Tuesday and Wednesday) had amazing worship and powerful messages, with the prayer time focused specifically on physical healing, addictions, and prodigals. Honestly though, I felt a bit personally discouraged that they were only asking people to come up who needed, very specifically, “physical healing” as I felt ready to receive emotional healing and thought maybe this would be the time.  I felt a disappointment because with everything the pastors said, they were very specific about “physical” healing, addictions, and prodigals. At one moment one of the pastors even started to say the word, “depr…” but it’s like he caught himself and didn’t want to go there so backed up and changed his words.  I was teary eyed the end of night two (Wednesday) as I left because I knew how much I wanted to be healed and I knew there were others in that room feeling what I felt. I felt upset, thinking, “God can heal this too!”

So, the fourth day, Thursday morning, I went into the day feeling an expectancy, an excitement of what the last night of this prayer event would bring. I’d been seeking God during the noon hour each day and during this time of seeking God on Thursday, I clearly heard from Him, “I’m going to heal you of your infirmity and I’m going to use you to minister to others from a place of understanding, with My heart for them and with My love for them.” This was an amazing moment, as it’s the first time in a long while God so specifically and clearly spoke to me, and it grew faith and more hope within me. 

The third night of service was amazing, as the other two nights had been, but once again they focused on the same three areas (physical healing, addictions, prodigals), but in this night I did not feel the same feelings of exclusion and disappointment I had the other two nights.  I believed what God had spoken directly to me in my personal prayer time and I felt it within me; my healing is coming! If it turns out to not be yet, well, I’m confident it is coming because I know what God spoke to my heart!  Not only that, I have seen His faithfulness in my healing process. It’s been three years of walking through different processes in my healing, so it’s been a work, not an instant thing but I believe that is how emotional healing takes place; it’s a process, because there’s a lot of factors that have contributed to the need for this type of healing, so my experience has been that God has addressed one thing at a time.

Leaving out of those three nights, I praise God for the physical healings that took place in so many and I praise Him for the answered prayers that will come out of all those prayers for addiction struggles and for prodigals. We saw God show up tangibly with the physical healings and I believe God is going to show up powerfully healing people of addictions and with salvation for prodigals.  I also believe God is going to answer prayers that were not specifically prayed for from the pulpit.

The words God spoke to me I believe were not just for me, but for anyone who is discouraged in their fight with whatever struggle they may be dealing with. I believe that if we have a little bit of hope and a little bit of faith, He will meet us right where we are at and He is ready and willing to perform the miracle we so desperately need!  We have to be willing to ask and believe that there is a possibility He will answer our prayer and we have to be willing to let Him guide our healing process.

Today during the prayer time following regular church, a mom brought a child up for prayer who had been hospitalized a while back and is going for a followup this week.  God so vividly brought back to me the reminder of what He did in my own son,  what I now realize is a miracle. My son was hospitalized several days as an infant and then struggled until he was four with recurring pneumonia and lots of scary moments. Ladies at church prayed in faith for him and those issues literally stopped and never returned. It was a miracle I never truly acknowledged as a miracle!  As I saw this mom bringing her son for prayer it reminded me that I have experienced the miraculous with my own son and yet I have sometimes doubted the possibility of the miraculous. Even writing this I am reminded of when my son was born the doctor held up his umbilical cord and said the words, “a true knot” and then someone in the room said, “are you saying he’s a miracle” and the doctor answered, “yes.” I wasn’t even a Christian when my son was born, but it’s just a reminder of the plans God has always had for my son and for me. A miracle before he was even born and a miracle when he was four and struggling with respiratory issues. My son is a miracle on so many levels! God used my son to lead me to Him. God giving me my son when he did is all a part of my testimony and a part of what led me to know Jesus.

One thing we have to realize is that a miracle doesn’t always have to happen in an instant; it can take a little time but that doesn’t discount the fact that it’s a miracle.  We live in a society of instant communication, instant delivery, instant this or instant that. Yes, in the Bible you will see that Jesus often performed miracles in an instant, so that is always a possibility, but in the Bible we also have to think about the miracles that took a little more time.  Abraham had to wait 25 years after the promise to conceive a child after God promised him he’d be “a father of many nations.” Taking that long does not discount the fact that it is a miracle, because how many 100 year old women do you know who conceived a child!?  Think about Joseph’s 13 year miracle in the works after being sold into slavery. Many miracles take time as God works out all the details in the in-between.

So, this all has me thinking, I have to wonder how often we overlook God’s miracles.  Not only that, but how often do we not believe enough to actually ask and open up the door of opportunity for that miracle to be performed by Him?

I believe in miracles!  I had experienced miracles but I never acknowledged them. It couldn’t be just other people’s testimonies that got me truly believing, it was God bringing to my remembrance and leading me to reflect on what He has already done in my own life, His faithfulness.  He brought it all to remembrance, so many miracles He has worked in my life!

God is a miracle working God, for me, for my son, and also for you!  What are You believing Him for? 

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If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” (Matthew 21:22)

He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” (Matthew 17:20)

Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, Because His compassions fail not.
They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness.
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,“Therefore I hope in Him!” (Lamentations 3:22-24)

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All scriptures from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 or New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

A Word and Prayer for Anyone in a Valley

Your mistakes are not the end of you. This is not your end, but a chapter in the beautiful story God has been writing and continues to write.  He has plans to prosper you and not to harm you, to give you hope and a future.  God, full of grace and compassion, wants you to come into His loving arms and allow Him to embrace you. You will look back on this chapter and see the beauty that came out of it.  Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.  He will never leave you nor forsake you.  He hears your cries and He knows your deepest concerns.  He meets you where you’re at, even when you feel distant and at your weakest.  He is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.  Lean into Him and allow His grace and strength to pull you through.  As you lean into Him be assured that in all things He is working for your good.

For anyone this speaks to I pray:

Lord, I pray that this person will feel Your presence and know in their heart how much You love them and how much You desire them. Help them to find their true identity in You. They are Your child, chosen and dearly beloved.  You have knit them together in their mother’s womb and You have designed them in a unique and beautiful way to be used for Your purposes and for Your glory.  Give them strength to endure the trials they are facing and shower them with Your grace.  Help them to break free of shame and receive Your forgiveness and grace in all their shortcomings.  As You say in Your Word, You do not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities.  For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is Your love for those who fear You; as far as the east is from the west, so far have You removed our transgressions from us.  Praise to You, God!  Lord, help this child of Yours to overcome all fear and anxiety.  Help them to know You are their Source and You will always meet their every need.  You are their Provider and their Fulfillment.  God, bless them and let Your favor be upon them as they step forward in faith and hope, with You by their side.  In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen.

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I lift up my eyes to the mountains – where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.

He will not let your foot slip – He who watches over you will not slumber;
indeed, He who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord watches over you – the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night.

The Lord will keep you from all harm – He will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.

(Psalm 121)
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Feel free to share with anyone you know who this may be for.  Be blessed!



All scriptures from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 or New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

New Year, New Hope

To me, the new year brings new hope.  While it comes every year, and realistically January 1 is indeed ‘just another day,’ there is just something about the new year. In the new year, it’s always good to set aside some time to reflect on where you’re at, where you’re headed, and where you desire to go.

I have been plagued by depression for the past three years and, while I thought it would be a quickly passing season, I realize it is an ongoing battle, a part of my story. I make the often-difficult daily choice to keep having hope.  It’s been ups and downs, reaching places of defeat and discouragement, but with that there has also been lots of healing and breakthrough.  I didn’t realize my need for healing until I reached a place of absolute despair.  Before the months of COVID isolation in 2020, my life had been on autopilot, and I didn’t realize how many aspects of my life were operating in a superficial way, and just waiting to fall apart, until I was forced into isolation for eight months.  I know I am not alone in that experience.

Going into 2023, I have an awareness that God is still at work in my healing process.  I am so glad He is faithful and never gives up on me! I still have my days where depression fogs my outlook and I question having purpose in this life, but I fight off those days by recalling God’s faithfulness and trusting that if I am here, there is purpose in it, both for this life and in preparation for eternity with Him.  I choose to continue having hope and to keep trusting God’s way and God’s timing. 

I have started to see the blessing of the place I reached, and the place I reached was far from anywhere anyone would desire to reach.  It was not a blessing in the moment, quite the opposite, but looking back, I feel blessed that as a result of reaching that rock-bottom place, I have an opportunity to live and experience this life with purpose.  While I’m not in the place I want to be yet, I am not where I was and I have a hope I didn’t have before.  I feel blessed that I have an opportunity to live my life with intention and to not let it get back on that superficial go with the flow track.  I don’t ever want my life to look like that again. I trust that God has a plan and a purpose in everything and I hold on to the hope that everything I have struggled through these past three years is part of my healing process and that the end result will be so worth it!

If you are currently in a place of discouragement, I want to encourage you in this new year; what you are feeling right now will not be wasted and a breakthrough is coming.  You have to continue to be willing to keep moving forward and be willing to do whatever hard work you have to put in.  Keep at it!  Whatever honest conversations you need to have, whatever appointments you need to make, be bold and be brave. I know how hard it is and I encourage you; keep pressing on! 

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11)

He has made everything beautiful in its time. (Ecclesiastes 3:11)

I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord. (Psalm 27:13-14)

All scriptures from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 or New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

Coronavirus – Faith, Not Sight.

Well, this is definitely a different time for all of us.  This day ends and I know I’m not the only one thinking, “this has been surreal.”  Having to hunt down usually basic groceries such as toilet paper, rice, canned goods etc., as it was announced schools will be closed for at least a month, gatherings of 250 people or more not allowed, and other closings.  There’s such uncertainty about where this is headed and the affect it could have.

I have strong faith.  Two years ago I faced a lot of trials in a small period of time and one thing that season did in me was give me a lesson in God’s faithfulness and in trusting Him beyond what we see in the natural. “Your love, Lord, reaches to the heavens, Your faithfulness to the skies. (Psalm 36:5)

We walk by faith, not by sight. (2 Corinthians 5:7)

In any given moment there is so much we can see or perceive in the natural, but there is also so much we cannot see.  As children of God, we have to trust His ways. As He says in His Word, “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:9)  His Word says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;  in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.” We will not always have understanding, but we can always trust.  

We know God numbers our days and that we have an eternity to look forward to with Him, we know that He is in control and that His Word is truth. We know, as His Word says, “we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.”  Yes, we know these things and we have to stand firm on these truths.  God is faithful! We can trust Him!


Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,  fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. (Hebrews 12:1-3)

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. (Romans 12:12)

Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love Him. (James 1:12)

You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised. (Hebrews 10:36)

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.  So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:16-18)

Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:12-14)

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. (Isaiah 41:10)

but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (Isaiah 40:31)

Psalm 91:
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.

I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress; My God, in Him I will trust.”

Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the perilous pestilence.

He shall cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you shall take refuge; His truth shall be your shield and buckler.

You shall not be afraid of the terror by night, nor of the arrow that flies by day, nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness, nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.

A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it shall not come near you. Only with your eyes shall you look, and see the reward of the wicked.

Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge, even the Most High, your dwelling place, No evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;

For He shall give His angels charge over you, to keep you in all your ways. In their hands they shall bear you up, lest you dash your foot against a stone.

You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra, the young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.

“Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him; I will set him on high, because he has known My name. He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him. With long life I will satisfy him, and show him My salvation.”

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All scriptures from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 or New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

Trusting God’s way, not our own…

God could have immediately delivered the Israelites from their enemy (the Egyptians).  He could have done this in an instant, in the same fashion He destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah in an instant, but instead He worked their deliverance in such a way that they had to face hardship in the process.

When Moses and Aaron first told the Israelites that God saw their turmoil in Egypt and would deliver them, they bowed down and worshiped the Lord.  Isn’t that quite often our response when God reveals to us He is about to make a powerful move in our lives?  We praise Him and worship Him and are excited about what He is going to do.  Then, somewhere along the way, while God is still actively working behind the scenes making the move He said He would, we get discouraged in the waiting and so often trials come against us.

Right after Moses and Aaron revealed to the Israelites they would be delivered and right after they had worshiped the Lord, the Egyptians increased their workload and beat them for not meeting quota.  Then they questioned Moses and Moses in turn questioned God, “Why have You brought trouble on this people?”  We so often question God when we see things aren’t going the way we, in our narrow mindedness, thought would be the best case scenario; all the while amidst our questioning, God is still at work beyond what we can see.

We have to trust God’s way and God’s timing. Yes, He could deliver us from all our troubles in an instant, but there is so much more at stake, so much more than meets the eye, so often a powerful work being done within us through the troubles we face.

I can personally say I look back on all of my trials I have faced since knowing the Lord and I can see much needed growth that God did in me through each and every one.  I wouldn’t trade that for anything.  I’m thankful for the trials!  Part of our testimony which leads others into the loving arms of our Savior is the troubles we’ve been through and how we have overcome them by God’s grace and love.

We know that after the Israelites went through much trial and tribulation, God delivered them from the Egyptians just as He said He would.  He could have delivered them in a moment, but would they have known their need for God in the long run; would they have appreciated the depth of it, or would they have seen it as a simple thing?  God was growing their faith in Him through their adversity, just as He grows our faith in Him.

If you are facing trials, I encourage you that God’s Word is true and that includes for you.  His Word never fails!  You can walk by faith, not by sight, knowing He is working all things for your good!  We have an eternal home and the trials we face in this life are not only growing us to be able to accomplish the plans and purposes God has for us here, but also preparing us to be ready to step into eternity with Him someday.  Keep pressing forward.  God is faithful!

 


By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter.  He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin.  He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward.  By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the king’s anger; he persevered because he saw Him who is invisible. (Hebrews 11:24-26)

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the l hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. (Romans 5:1-4)

For we live by faith, not by sight. (2 Corinthians 5:7)

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. (James 1:1-3)

Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify Me. (Psalm 50:15)

Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord. (Psalm 27:14)

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All scriptures from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 or New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

God’s great love!

“The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” (Deuteronomy 31:8)

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10)

“Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me.” (Psalm 27:10)

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39)

“The Lord looks from heaven; He sees all the sons of men. From the place of His dwelling He looks on all the inhabitants of the earth; He fashions their hearts individually; He considers all their works.” (Psalm 33:13-15)

“But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)

“For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” (Psalm 139:13-14)

God’s truth about His love for YOU. Straight from the Word.

Praise God for His unfailing love!

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All scriptures from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 or New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

2020, A year of… Grace

Grace.

I could never have enough of it; I can’t live without it. God’s grace sustains me.  As I prayerfully considered what God would have me share in this new year, He led me to share a few, “2020, A year of…” words of encouragement.  This one, “grace,” is the one that resonates with me the most right now.  I’m at a place in my journey where it is only by His grace that I press forward.  For those like me who day by day lean on His grace, I encourage you, we are at a good place.  Relying completely on God and the strength and grace He provides is the best posture we could be in.  As we keep seeking His grace, we will keep finding His grace. We must keep our eyes always fixed on Jesus, our Lord and Savior.  He fulfills, He heals, He makes whole.

Lord, Thank You for Your unfailing love and for Your never ending mercy and grace.  For all those who need Your grace in this new year, I pray that you would pour it out in abundance.  Thank You that You never leave us; You never forsake us. With You by our side we will never fall.  You uphold us and strengthen us.  God, You have shown us so much grace!  Thank You, Lord!  May we experience more and more of Your grace as we press forward, keeping our hope and trust always in You.  In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen!

“Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16)

“Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.” (2 Peter 1:2)

For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:8-9)

“Now this is our boast: Our conscience testifies that we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially in our relations with you, with integrity and godly sincerity. We have done so, relying not on worldly wisdom but on God’s grace.” (2 Corinthians 1:12)

“But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.”Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” (2 Corinthians 12:9)

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All scriptures from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 or New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

2020, A year of… Breakthrough

Breakthrough.

To the one who needs breakthrough, Keep pressing forward in the strength and grace God gives. You are not in this alone and you will experience the breakthrough you need.  There is always so much more going on than meets the eye.  We can only see what is in front of us, but God can see the whole picture and He knows exactly what needs to be lined up and how to make your miracle happen.

Lord, I pray for whoever is reading this and needs breakthrough.  God, may they feel your love and presence in a fresh way as we enter into the new year. I pray You would give them strength and that they would recall Your faithfulness, how You’ve always been there for them.  You’ve been faithful before, You will be faithful now, and You will be faithful always!  I pray you would give them strength to press forward and endure and to take any needed steps of faith.  May they trust in You, Lord, with all their heart and lean not on their own understanding, in all their ways submit to You, knowing You will direct their paths. You are a good and faithful God. To You be all glory! In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen.

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28)

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” (Isaiah 41:10)

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All scriptures from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 or New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

As He leads

I have pondered some big questions lately.  What is my place in this world? How can I help the hurting?  What does God have for me to accomplish?  I am different than the average; how can I really be used?

As I have pondered all this, There is one solid conclusion I have come to.  Jesus.  Jesus is the only answer.  He defines my place in this world, He is the only answer for the hurting, God has much for me to accomplish because of my faith in Jesus and He has led me to embrace my differences and realize that my differences equate to Him being able to use me in a different way.  God wired me the way I am and He has purpose in the way He designed me.

I dont know exactly what all He will call me to do, but He has been lovingly revealing to me over the past few years that I am someone He can and will use to accomplish His purposes.  He once told me, “what you see as your weaknesses, I see as your strengths.”  He has been growing my faith tremendously over these past few years as I have stepped out in faith and obedience and as I have realized my complete dependence on Him.  I’m not afraid because I know He is with me.  I have complete trust in Him and He gives me strength.  When I face worries and uncertainty, I know that because I am submitted to and trusting Him everything is working out for good.  I walk by faith and not by sight.

When I was just starting my faith journey, a little over five years ago, He gave me a vision of how my journey would look and He gave me a ‘life scripture’:

 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him, and He will direct your paths.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

I saw a vision of an incomplete brick path in the process of being laid.  It looked rather rough as if it had been there waiting to be worked on a while.  At the time I received the vision, I was having worry over stepping outside of His will – of missing it or taking a wrong step.  He told me that I do not have to fear taking a misstep because, while a step off the path would cause delay, as I focused on Him and trusted Him He would rework the path so my feet would be on it once again.  He showed me my feet on the incomplete path and I saw my foot take a step and as I took the step He laid a brick below it before my foot hit the ground.  As I took the step, the path no longer looked old and abandoned!  He was completely directing and establishing my path as I took a step.

I have been seeing this vision take place in my life.  He speaks something to me and as I take a step in faith and obedience, He truly directs my path.  I see good come out of these steps of obedience.  I see His strength overcoming my weaknesses in these steps of obedience.  I see His purposes being accomplished in these steps of obedience.

I just recognized this right now, seeing that unfinished path that hadn’t been worked on in a while was an invitation.  It was an invitation for me to be a willing servant, for me to be obedient in lifting my foot to take any step He calls me to take.  Over these past few years, I’ve had to overcome some worry and I’ve had to allow Him to do some much needed growth in me, and now I’m at that place where nothing holds me back.  I am willing to step as He leads.

May His good, pleasing and perfect will always be done in me and through me. For His glory!

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All scriptures from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 or New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

Thankful

It’s that time of year again where everyone is asked the question, “what are you thankful for?”  Hopefully whenever you ponder that question, you have a hard time answering – not for lack of things to be thankful for, but because there’s an immeasurable amount to be thankful for!  I couldn’t answer that question in simplicity; I’d have to write a book and it would be incomplete.  I hope that you feel the same way!  We are so blessed!

So instead of asking, “what are you thankful for,” here’s my question:  “When you think of this past year and all you have to be thankful for, what is one thing this year that has really stood out among the immeasurable list of what you have to be thankful for?”

Here’s my answer:

Last year was a year of many trials, but also a year of growth.  In a span of four months, my sister was in the hospital for over a month with life threatening injuries, the home I lived in had a house fire, I moved in to my own place with my son for the first time in his life, my grandma had a stroke that left her in an alzheimers state, my grandpa died after a long battle with cancer, I was in a hit and run car accident (the guy later turned himself in) that totaled my car and left me in a very long and frustrating process, the car I replaced it with broke down, my super sweet and loved boss passed away after a short battle with cancer.  It was a lot of trials, but also a lot of growth and a lot of blessing in response to the trials.

I share this because it was the beginning process of what I am most thankful for this year.  Last year when I was facing trial after trial God placed the word “preparation” on my heart.  This gave me hope in the midst of what I was facing.  I really was able to keep my eyes on Jesus through it all.  At the beginning of this year God placed the word “growth” on my heart, and that is what I have experienced this year.  What stands out to me this year in particular to be most thankful for is that God has been growing me in my relationship with Him and He has been growing me as a whole, helping me to discover who I am in Him and to find complete fulfillment in Him.  As I have given over control to Him over these past two years, submitting to and trusting Him, He has truly directed my every path, led me in the way I should go, and established my plans — just as His Word promises to do (see Proverbs 3:5-6, Psalm 32:8, Proverbs 16:3).  It is this growth, in dependence on Him, in faith and trust in Him, in fulfillment in Him, in completeness in Him, that I am most thankful for this year.


Someone shared this fabulous idea and my son and I started a “Grateful Jar” at the end of summer.  We write down one thing we are grateful for in the morning before we start our day and drop it in the jar.  It has been wonderful to reflect on all God has done and continues to do for us!

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Be blessed!