Following After God

Here is a beautiful prayer I pray daily, it was written by AW Tozer from his book “Following Hard After God”.

O God, I have tasted Your goodness, and it has both satisfied me and made me thirsty for more. I am painfully conscious of my need of further grace. I am ashamed of my lack of desire. O God, the Triune God, I want to want You; I long to be filled with longing; I thirst to be made more thirsty still. Show me Your glory, I pray, that so I may know You indeed. Begin in mercy a new work of love within me. Say to my soul, ‘Rise up, my love, my fair one, and come away.’ Then give me grace to rise and follow You up from this misty lowland where I have wandered so long.
 In Jesus name.
 Amen

May this be our prayer daily!  May we yearn and drink deeply from God’s word.

In the opening sentence of Tozer’s  The Knowledge of the Holy. Is found one of the most important, profound sentences that I have ever read. “What I believe about God is the most important thing about me.”  Tozer is telling us a great truth that everything we believe, everything we do, every sin with which we struggle, every attempt to understand who we are and what it means to be a Christian is rooted in our thoughts about God.

Your view of God affects everything you think, feel and do. Think about it, it affects your prayer life and is the key influencer of all of your thoughts and actions.  Once I was able to truly understand who God was (his character etc.), my heart changed, I began to have a deeper walk with Him, able to trust more and in turn began to change my heart.

What about you? Are the things you think about God true to who He is? Don’t answer too quickly.   We MUST remember this, whatever you know about God is so minute compared to what there is to know about Him; He is INFINITE. We need to continually seek Him each and every day!  Ask Him to reveal Himself to you in a new and deeper way. Never be satisfied with your walk with Him, continue growing in the Grace and Knowledge of Him.

What do you think about God?  Food for thought.

I want to encourage you TODAY to seek Him out in a new way and allow Him to change the most important thing about you.  Amen

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The Missing Piece Of The Puzzle

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Psalm 33:6 says, “By the Word of the Lord the heavens were made, and all the host of them by the breath of His mouth.”

God spoke and the earth was formed out of nothing. How much more do you think God can put the pieces of your life back together?  if He can create the universe from nothing?

In the past several months I have been dealing with cancer, surgery and it’s treatments.  I have been on bed-rest and frankly, had way to much alone time.  Time to think about the last couple years since my divorce.  I found myself stuck things just did not make sense to me.  There was a span of about a month that went from talking reconciliation, proclamations of love to I want a divorce by email.  The explanation given (no face to face or talking on the phone) did not make any sense to me, why? because I knew it was not true. He has always been a person who avoids confrontation and maybe this was just to painful to explain or face.  I realize we cannot expect things from people they cannot give.   But, one of my biggest challenges has always been that I have an analytical mind, therefore, everything needs to make sense for me to move on.

This got me thinking about my youngest child.

She has always loved puzzle-working and she knows the best puzzles are the ones with lots of small pieces with similar colors, making it a big challenge. Watching her work her puzzles, I have often thought over the course of the last two years how very much like a puzzle our lives are. God fitting each piece of our story together perfectly.  The problem was, the pieces of this story did not seem to fit. There was a huge piece missing.  It wasn’t so much about moving on from the person as it was making sense of the whole situation and being blindsided.  To be fair, We had been struggling since I chose to separate.  Making sure I was fully in God’s will.  Ever the obedient child who leans to much towards legalism, aww…yet another hurdle in my life. Check!

From my point of view (which is sometimes dangerous), the pieces just didn’t seem to fit.  I could not see the completed picture on the outside of the box so I was not sure how these pieces all fit together.  But Jesus knows. He has a reason for each one.  He is not only a great puzzle maker but he is the best at putting puzzles together even the ones that seem to have no color or life and to us don’t fit.  I just love how He causes things to happen, people to meet that HAVE to be in place so some future piece of our puzzle will fit together perfectly..

That is what happened to me, a couple days ago, I thought ok, this is ridiculous I was being inundated with emails from his family criticizing me and saying really hurtful things.  I cried, prayed and reached out to a pastor that knows the situation well, in our correspondence the Lord gave me a really precious gift, unbeknownst to him he gave me that missing piece.  Suddenly everything made sense, as much as it could anyway.  I felt immediately a sense of peace that truly did pass all understanding.  Pro 3:5,6  Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him,And He shall direct[a] your paths.  Would I have liked the outcome to be different, absolutely, I believe every marriage can be restored if both hearts are open.  Only problem was that was not our case.  Instead the proverbial easy way was taken.  But I now had  the answers I needed to move on and commit this person and my life to the Lord, and to forgive and ask forgiveness for the part I played.

Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.  James 1:17
There have been many of these “divine appointments” or “Gifts”  over the last couple years. He has thankfully been so active in my life and journey that I sometimes feel like I am —well, that my life is like a story in a book.  It is a kind of paradox really. We are all already a piece of a God sized puzzle but at the same time…. everything shapes us.  All the emotions, the joy, the tragedies, the accomplishments, the mistakes, the good days, the hard days, the mundane days all working together for good.  Shaping us into what the Lord desires. Romans 8:28

28 And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

The last couple of years has been quite an education, like being in school with God,  He taught me each step of the way, not only what I needed to know but what would help me through at each point along the journey. These lessons were deep and profound. Opening my eyes and heart. Changing me from the inside out.  Quieting my soul. Healing me, and not just emotionally, but physically as well.

I am human (and at times neurotic) and though I have learned valuable lessons that have reshaped me, and stretched me, there were times when “the enemy” attacks. There have been weeks, months on end, when he drags my mind through the mire and muck.  It is in these times of attack that my past baggage starts resurfacing, hopelessness tries to creep in and present stresses pound in the back of my mind.

It is at these times of difficulty that we acknowledge what it means that He is God. This is all about Him. This is His story. It is about obedience.  He is in control and sitting on His throne.  I needed to Let Him do his job, completely surrendered to His will no matter what.

Having confidence that the pieces of our lives are slowly all fitting together to create a beautiful picture. Even though we won’t see the completed picture this side of Heaven, we can know the Creator is creating a beautiful picture from the pieces of our one ordinary, messy, beautiful life.

I am so thankful to the Lord who used this pastor to put that last piece of the puzzle together that fit perfectly in my puzzle of life.  A pastor that has been patient with me when he did not need to.  That spoke the truth with love, that sometimes can be a hard pill to swallow, but is just what we need to hear at just the right time. After all, I am not even part of his flock, although I once was, but I guess I am because we are all brothers and sisters in Christ a family of believers. Hallelujah

You see God was saying all along, “I have the missing piece. It’s a surrendered relationship with me. That is what you have been missing. That is what you have been searching for and didn’t realize it.”  All I needed to do was ask and have faith that he would show me the way and heal my brokenheart.  But, the Lord, being gracious knew I needed the assurance of that last earthly piece.
David said to the Lord, “My times are in Your hand; deliver me from the hands of my enemies” (Psalm 31:15). I have to remind myself that I have a Creator who designed me, and my life is in His hands. Only He knows where every piece belongs.

The Bible provides a wonderful message to the brokenhearted. Psalm 34:18 says,“The Lord is near to the broken hearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”

Psalm 147:3, “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.”

The Apostle Peter said something that really resonates with all of this: “Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls to him in well doing, as unto a faithful Creator.” (1 Peter 4:19). Sometimes it is God’s will that we are broken for a time, as it was in Job’s case. We must entrust ourselves to Him, believing that He is faithful in every good thing, in His good time. When we leave this earthly tent and enter into God’s presence, we will be completely whole.

Revelation 21:1-5, the greatest promise for God’s beloved is this:

Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!”

The final promise from Revelation 22:20,

He who testifies to these things says, ‘Yes, I am coming soon.’ Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

For Thy Maker Is Thine Husband

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For your Maker is your husband, the LORD of hosts is his name; and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer, the God of the whole earth he is called. Isaiah 54:5

This scripture was written by God to His beloved Israel, but I believe that we who are single, divorced or widowed today can also use these same verses as God’s promises to us.

May you read and reread this beautiful chapter and let it bless you as it has blessed me so often.

If you are waiting for a godly man to come into your life? While you are waiting let God be that Man. He wants to be the one that you depend on and be your Provider, Protector, Comforter, and Friend.

He is, after all, the Only One on this earth who is truly able to say “I will never leave you” (Hebrews 13:5). He is the Only One who is able to say to you “I have loved you with an everlasting love…” (Jeremiah 31:3)

Hallelujah! Isn’t that good news!

God is a Friend to the friendless, a Father to the Fatherless, a Husband to the husband-less, a Parent to the forsaken.
Let God be your Husband and take care of all your needs. Trust in God and He will take care of you.

 

A New Creation

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Being a new creation in Christ means that the old sinful person you once were has gone as a result of the finished work of Christ.

We begin a lifelong journey of being renewed and sanctified by the work of the Holy Spirit.  God’s purpose is that His people become like the Lord Jesus Christ; therefore the Holy Spirit works in the changed heart and mind of the believer helping them to become conformed to the image of Jesus—to become like Jesus in thought, word, and deed.  A new creation indeed!!!

The new creation is a wondrous thing, formed in the mind of God and created by His power and for His glory.

 

Help For The Hurting

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Help us Lord to be sensitive to those around us that are hurting. ~ Help us to see their pain Lord, Help us to ask you for the courage to speak up and that you would give us the words to say to comfort them, that you would speak thru us, Lord. ~ Make us brave, Lord, for those who need our courage today. Help us to speak for others today who can’t and show them that You know their hurt and loneliness.  I pray Lord, that you would wrap your loving arms around them today, help them Lord to feel just how much you love them.  Use us Lord as your vessels of truth and love. I pray Lord that if they do not know you that you would speak to them, Lord, we know there is no salvation apart from you. I plead for you to make yourself known to those who are living in darkness and hurting today. Help them to see their need for a Savior and to turn from their sinful ways. Father, shine your light and send your Spirit to convict hearts and bring repentance. Thank you that you are a God who restores and offers new beginnings by your grace. Thank you for pursuing the lost long after we have given up hope…Thank you, Lord Amen

For those who need fresh hope today…you are not alone. You are never forgotten.

He is with you. Every step of the way!

10 Verses for when you feel broken, for those in need of comfort:

“He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” Ps. 147:3

“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.” Ps. 34:18

“But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” James 4:6

“I believe I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait on the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait on the Lord.” Ps. 27:13-14

“Blessed be God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble by the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” 2 Cor. 1:3-4

“Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, I will help you, yes, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” Is. 41:10

“He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.” 1 Pet. 2:24

“Cast your burden on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.” Ps. 55:22

“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matt. 11:28-30

“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 of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” 2 Cor. 12:9

Jesus Came Not To Condemn You But To Save You

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“Jesus Christ came not to condemn you but to save you, knowing your name, knowing all about you, knowing your weight right now, knowing your age, knowing what you do, knowing where you live, knowing what you ate for supper and what you will eat for breakfast, where you will sleep tonight, how much your clothing cost, who your parents were. He knows you individually as though there were not another person in the entire world. He died for you as certainly as if you had been the only lost one. He knows the worst about you and is the One who loves you the most.
If you are out of the fold and away from God, put your name in the words of John 3:16 and say, “Lord, it is I. I’m the cause and reason why Thou didst on earth come to die.” That kind of positive, personal faith and a personal Redeemer is what saves you. If you will just rush in there, you do not have to know all the theology and all the right words. You can say, “I am the one He came to die for.” Write it down in your heart and say, “Jesus, this is me—Thee and me,” as though there were no others. Have that kind of personalized belief in a personal Lord and Savior.”

A.W. Tozer, And He Dwelt Among Us: Teachings from the Gospel of John

God Cares

 

god-cares-for-youIt is important to remember that you are not alone! In the midst of every emotion, there is one thing you can count on. God cares and is with you! God cares deeply about every emotion swirling around in our hearts. If you are on the mountaintop and feeling like things couldn’t be better, God cares for you and is with you! If you are currently experiencing hurt, struggling with disappointment in your life, remember this, God cares and is always with you! He’s close to you when you cry when you feel all alone. He’s close to you when you wonder how you’ll move forward. Pour out your pain to God, and move towards Him. The best news is, especially for me! emotions are fleeting. We can choose how we direct our thoughts and energy. Instead of nursing our pain, we can find freedom in choosing to cling to our hope in God.