Tag Archive | rest

Faith facts

Hi friends, it’s been one of those weeks! Suddenly so many things seem to be in turmoil and as a friend of mine said..the enemy is good at making even things that are blessings seem to be curses! When we face challenges, we may feel discouraged, we may feel overwhelmed but we must never ever let go of faith. Faith helps us meet life’s circumstances with certainty and affirmation that God has supreme control of the outcome..so let’s look at eight encouraging faith facts. I pray that this short study will encourage you as it has me.

1. Faith is the shield that protects us from the potentially damaging effects of the various onslaughts we face. Depression, anger, fear and anxiety come as a natural response to oppressive circumstances but we can flip the switch, pick up the shield of faith and push them back! Better yet, don’t ever put it down! Be always ready!2. Faithfulness is a fruit of the Spirit. You see it’s not about sheer willpower, if the Spirit of God lives in you Faith is already there ready for use! Oranges can’t come from apple trees. You’ve got faith!!!3. Faith must be nourished. How? By focusing on God’s word. If your soul is aching or burdened.. read and internalize faith-building scriptures each day. Doing this along with prayer, worship and fellowship..will be like medicine to remedy our aching souls. Ro 10:174. Workout your faith!! Exercise and build your faith muscles during hard times. Our actions should speak to the fact that we have faith. Don’t let apathy move in. Get up and work in Faith! No money for that big project yet? Start small with what you have. With prayer and faith, work your mustard seed and watch God grow it into a tree!5. Faith attracts God! While you’re dealing with a seemingly insurmountable task or challenge..work at it with all your heart towards God. God loves to see faith and He rewards it! 6. In the end you will shine!!! So work with endurance! Work through it knowing that whatever happens, God will bring you through as beautiful and refined like gold. Don’t let discouragement and depression win.  Job 23:107. Our faith is valuable! So much more than just temporal, so much more than just something to help us cope with circumstances this side of heaven. It is so valuable that it has eternal weight and glory! 

8. Faith leads us into to godly rest where even though we work, we do not strive to make things happen or to bring about the outcome we desire! When we believe, we can rest. Rest in the fact that God has this! He will provide, He will see that the outcome is for good. As the word says, let us make every effort to enter His rest! Faith leads us to rest! Heb 4I don’t know what you’re facing but God wants you to know that He sees and honors your faith. So be encouraged, surrender the outcome to God and raise up your shield of faith! Have a great weekend.

By Carol-angel Jackson

(Click photos for photo sources)

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Today and Tomorrow

Encouragement for today.

Matthew 6:25-34
New International Version (NIV)
Do Not Worry

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?

28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

He Loves Me!

900220_51512798Eph 3:17-19…And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

I’m a simple girl at heart really.  I find it easy to give of myself to others (perhaps sometimes too easily) to meet their needs but I find it difficult to let people into who I am.  The people I love, I love passionately and with all that I am.

My family though they drive me crazy sometimes, I wouldn’t trade them for the world. I know they love me even though at times, I have not been the best family member to them, but I trust that love and the support I’ve always felt I had.  I am blessed to be married to a man I love and who despite my many imperfections loves me. When I hear others talk about the lack of trust and fidelity in relationships, I don’t feel that way about mine and if I’ve ever been tempted to doubt I’ve always trusted his word and more-so, trusted God and left it there because his actions show he loves me.

The same is true of my love for Christ. I love God and it is enough for me that He loves me and that He gave His own son’s life for mine. I simply trust His word, accept it and leave it at that. Yes, I know I don’t read my bible enough and my prayers are sometimes probably better classified as conversations I have with God; and there are the times that I don’t feel like I’m a great Christian and worry that I don’t sow enough of His Word into my children’s lives. Despite all of these things I know that He loves me and I am assured of it in His word. God loves me, who allows others’ problems to overwhelm my spirit and shatter my peace of mind too much before I pass it on to Him. He loves me even when I allow myself to become too concerned about my own problems.  He loves me, when I disappoint Him, and allows me to enjoy the refreshing of His forgiveness when I admit my wrong. He loves me despite my inner battles and even though I am totally undeserving of His love and blessings.. He loves me.

His love enables me to go rise up and go on when I would rather throw myself a pity party when it seems the whole world is conspiring against me and I fail at something yet again. There is no feeling in the world that compares to the unconditional love that I find in Christ.  There is no logical reason I can think of why He should love me this way but there is great freedom in my spirit knowing that despite my imperfections, fears, failures or successes, He doesn’t just tell me He loves me but shows it every day.

Accepting this profound truth with simple child-like faith drives me to be content when I don’t want to be, to forgive others when it’s hard, to fall into His arms totally vulnerable when I feel at my weakest point. I know that it will be OK  because He loves me and I can rest in His love.

My life’s goal is simply to live my life knowing that God loves me and that the people I come into contact with, see that love and find that love in Him.  I may not shout it from the rooftops often enough but anytime there is a choice to be made, you can be sure that everyone knows I am on God’s side whether the other choices seem to be more logical or easy and I will never go against His Word because He loves me.

Do you know that He loves you too?

In Hebrews 3 and 4 we read that we can enter the rest of God by believing and mixing His word of truth with faith. If you struggle with feelings of being unloved, believe His word today, that His love for you is great, listen to His voice and open your heart to Him.

Hebrews 3: 7-8  Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says: “Today, if you will hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion..

Will you embrace and be in awe of this simple truth of God’s love for you and allow it to guide your life to Him today?

Let’s pray:
Father, despite my imperfections, you love me and you showed me your love by sending your Son to die for me. Help me to believe and accept your word with child-like faith and live my life in the knowledge of your love. Do not let my heart be hardened by unbelief or the circumstances of life but cause me to rest in your love and then to share it with the world around me. Amen!

Worship:
Click on the link for a free download of  Christ be Revealed by Carol Angel.  Let’s celebrate the love Christ has for us today!

By Kay Thomas

Let go of that grudge!

kite loose

Matthew 6:14 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.

Picture this-

You’re out with your sisters and tell them that you’re going to be promoted. You’ll have great influence and more than you could ever need financially. You sincerely assure them that when this happens, if they are in need, you will help them with jobs, finances..whatever. They listen, but unbeknown to you, instead of rejoicing with you they become jealous and judge your desire to help as condescent. Worse still, these people you call your family, begin to plot your demise and are determined to kill your dream. Some of them stop talking to you, begin to tell lies and seek to destroy your reputation.

The scenario is similar to what happened to Joseph in Genesis 37. When he told his brothers his dreams, they hated, envied, plotted to kill him and eventually sold him into slavery. Unfortunately, this occurs all to often, as husbands, wives, children, parents, sisters, brothers and co-workers hurt each other intentionally or unintentionally. We are all guilty of offending someone at some time and these offenses inflict wounds and cause hurt and distrust. The painful truth is, as we live in this imperfect world and relate with imperfect people, we must expect to encounter offenses and betrayal. Jesus himself dealt with betrayal from his disciple Judas (Matthew 26: 14-16) and said:

Matthew 18:7 Woe unto the world because of offenses! for it must needs be that offenses come; but woe to that man by whom the offense cometh.

Fortunately, God has provided a way for us to deal with offenses and it doesn’t involve putting on boxing gloves and preparing for battle or cowering with hurt feelings. Read on below:

1~Forgive

Christ gave his life to secure our forgiveness with God so that we can follow his example and forgive others. We’ve committed and still commit offenses against God. Yet through Christ Jesus, God forgives all who repent of their sin and accept his kind redemption. If the creator of all things, the one with all power, could be so merciful and gracious towards sinful humanity, could we not also extend the same mercy and grace towards those who offend us..regardless of the offense? God expects us to.

Eph 4:32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Receiving God’s forgiveness and then forgiving others is the first step towards letting offenses go.

2~Love, bless, pray and do good

God expects us to treat our offenders in exactly the opposite way as they have treated us.

Matt 5:44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you. 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.

3~Acknowledge God’s providence and trust that he is working good through the offense, even though the offense itself may be terrible.

Romans 8:28 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.

Joseph was able to forgive his brothers and say to them:

Gen 50:20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.

Finally, God doesn’t expect us to be able to forgive without his help. That’s why he’s given his Holy Spirit to help us in our weakness i.e. our inability to do it ourselves. When we study the life, death and resurrection of Jesus, it is a powerful example of God’s forgiveness and salvation at work. If you’ve been struggling with unforgiveness and the inability to let go of offenses, pray now and ask Christ to enter into your heart and life today. If you’ve already done this, ask him to fill you with his Spirit and show you his way of living. You will discover his peace and supernatural ability to forgive when offended. Your soul can then let go of grudges whenever and from whomever they may come.

Matt 11:28 Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

By Carol-Angel Jackson