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Archive for the ‘Devotionals’ Category

Psalm 50:14-15

Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and perform your vows to the Most High, and call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me.

I think sometimes the biggest thing I miss when I am going through my “days of trouble” is to stop for a minute and Thank God for all He has done, for who He is and all He is going to do in my life.  It is very easy to just focus on complaining to Him and begging Him to deliver us from all of the struggles in our lives without stopping to be grateful that He is there all the time.

God wants to deliver us and He wants us to be in a position to glorify Him when He does to draw others to Him.  There is nothing exciting about someone who only comes to you when they need something and yet they never really have much to say about you  otherwise that is honoring and good.  And there is nothing exciting to a non-believer about someone who is all gloom and doom all the time that never seems to have anything to tell about what God has and is doing in their life.

I would encourage each of us today whether you are going through a tough spot in life or not to think of all the things you have to be thankful for.  Get excited and write them down and go over your list several times today and watch how that changes your outlook on life and your fellowship with God today.  Start your prayers with thanksgiving and praise to God for what He has done and for who He is!  God obviously realizes that it is much more natural for us to talk about what bothers us and what we need and that to take the time to be thankful is a sacrifice for some reason.  God wants to hear your heartaches and your struggles and he wants to deliver you all He is asking here is for you to have a thankful heart and do your part and glorify Him when He delivers you!

Quote:

“Hope never dies where faith is strong, and faith grows strong in the presence of hope.”  Chad Witmeyer

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Psalm 42:8

By day the Lord commands his steadfast love, and at night his song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life.

Who do you turn to when you feel no one cares and there are very few you can trust?  If you aren’t careful you will turn to the wrong things or the wrong people when you hit times like that.  God created us with the desire for relationships and more often than not they are good but everyone has those days, weeks and months where it just seems as though we are on our own without another human being in site who cares.

I know as women it is often difficult to shake off the feelings we have about God “loving us” because as women if we are not the only one loved we have a tendency to not feel loved.  He loves us – yes, but He loves everyone!  The key here is this; God is bigger than that and it is important for us as women to see that.  God truly loves you as if you are the only person on earth!  He wants to show you all of the little things He does for you on a regular basis if you will just slow down a minute and truly accept that, “yes, He did that just for you.”  This may sound a little corny but I remember looking at a sunrise one morning and thinking of how beautiful it was, I was thinking wouldn’t it be cool if that sunrise were just for me but I knew there had to be multitudes of people seeing the sunrise and enjoying it as well.  I know I’m sounding selfish to just be looking for something He would do that was an expression of His love just for me, “here Janet, look at this, I knew you would enjoy this.”  Then the thought hit me, “what if He does make it just for you or me, we all see it as stunning but we see it through our own eyes and He knows just exactly what sunrise it will take to bless you or me!  He is the God of all creation and He will look for ways to bless you if you let Him, just don’t miss them because you don’t think He is capable of loving only you!

Allow God to fill your heart, mind and soul with His love today and His song for you tonight!  Open your heart to His healing, don’t waste another moment.  Wounded hearts are His specialty and He will love you through whatever you are going through today.

Quote:

“If you get up the courage to begin you have the courage to succeed.”  David Viscott

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Psalm 41:9

Even my  close friend in whom I trusted, who ate my bread, has lifted his heel against me.

Oh Ladies, I am thinking this hits a bit close to home for all of us!  Is there a lady on earth that was never wounded deeply by another woman that she thought was a good friend?  Is there a woman on earth who has never felt that sting of competition when in a room with another woman, maybe even a close friend?  If there is a woman who has never been deeply hurt by another woman in her life I would love to meet you because in my experience that is “part” of the reason women don’t trust women!

When I first moved to Tennessee I didn’t trust women at all which is somewhat crazy and yet I just felt all women were not to be trusted.  Obviously God has a sense of humor because He has given me such an incredible passion for women and the female heart.  We have such beautiful hearts and yet most of us are so wounded we don’t even know where to begin each day.  We feel the need to protect our hearts, be strong, not too needy, not too harsh, beautiful, sweet, hard working and able to carry on amazing relationships, never letting anyone down – ever!  We have incredible expectations for ourselves and there are just not enough hours in a day to accomplish everything we feel the need to accomplish on most days in order to feel accepted.

We need to stop ladies!  We are beautiful and God has created us with amazing hearts!  You know that beautiful woman who seems to have it “all together”, well she feels just as inadequate as you do.  What?  Is that possible?  Not only is it possible it is probable!  The more perfect she looks and acts more than likely the more she feels she might not still be quite enough!  How sad, instead of our coming together and uniting as women to uplift each other and help each other become all we can be for God we are competing over stupid simple things and if you bring a man into the mix the battle becomes hot!

My heart and prayer is for us to learn to become a force to be reckoned with instead of a continual cat fight!  We are so above all of that foolishness!  It has been a struggle almost since the beginning of time but it is time for us to recognize that it is a tool Satan uses to keep women and I mean all women, including you from becoming all you can be for God!

Are you ready?  Are you willing to pray that God will help you overcome that jealous, frustrating battle you feel with women you don’t even know yet?  We can have victory and we can empower each other and we can claim victory and make a difference in our lifetime, not only in our own lives but in the lives of our families, our friends, our churches, our communities, our states, our country and our world.  If we can let go and ask God to change our hearts and the hearts of the women around us we can make a difference for Him.  Let’s start today, are you with me on this?

Quote:

“We ,may not be able to do any great thing, but if each of us will do something , however small it may be, a good deal will be accomplished.”  D.L. Moody

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Psalm 30:11-12

You have turned for me my mourning into dancing; you have loosed my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness, that my glory may sing your praise and not be silent.  O Lord my God, I will give thanks to you forever!

God will heal your wounded heart and He will bring victory into your life so you can get excited about life again.  David had really seen it all in his lifetime and had incredible heartache as well and yet he is acknowledging in these verses that God had stepped in and turned his mourning into dancing.  That is not just a heart that has been healed that is a heart that is rejoicing with all of the joy it could possibly have had before heartache came to reside.

Are you ready for healing?  That may sound like a strange question but sometimes we get so comfortable with our pain that it becomes “who we are”.  Ouch!  If we are released from that pain or struggle in our lives then what?  I have seen people that really don’t want healing even from physical ailments because it is how they get attention.  Sometimes we can become addicted to just complaining to God about everything until we can’t even enjoy a day if we aren’t complaining about something if not to God then to someone else.

God wants victory in your life on every level and He wants you to live a life of joy!  Why would anyone want what you have if you are nothing but an Eeyore walking through life moping and complaining?  God has so much more for you than that!  If you know someone like that please encourage them today to allow God to work in their lives so they can enjoy all that He has in store for them.

Start today and restart your day by praising God for who He is and what He is about to do in your life!  God will bring you to a new level of life if you will allow Him to.  I know how tempting it can be to start right out by explaining to God all the wrongs you felt have been done in the last 48 hours of your life and how you would like Him to fix everyone and everything, but if that is really true then ask Him to give you a day of joy and victory and then live in it!  Ask Him to show you today what is right in your life and the people around you and give you the ability to focus on that and to live in joy and peace letting go of the negative.  God loves you and truly has the best in store for you but you have to let go of the rest in order to see it.

Quote:    “What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us.”  Ralph Waldo Emerson

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Deuteronomy 8:2

Remember how the LORD your God led you all the way in the desert these forty years, to humble you and to test you in order to know what was in your heart, whether or not you would keep his commands

Have you ever asked yourself “why is this happening to me?”  Why isn’t God doing something about all of this?  We all have tests that God allows in our lives just like the Israelites in this verse.  It’s like when we were in school, we learn and then we are tested to see what we have retained the only difference is; you don’t fail with God’s tests you just keep taking them over in life until you pass. Trust me ladies I know because I have taken some tests so many times over I could have planned them myself unfortunately.  

We don’t know what we really know until we are tested.  God tests us to show us the areas that we still need to work on.  The best thing to do when you hit tough times is to ask God to show you what you need to learn and to just tell yourself, “this is a test and I’m gonna pass it!”  As you pass tests God will answer those prayers and promote you spiritually.  It’s grow up time. 

One of the most important things for us as Christians where our testimony to others is concerned is how we behave during hard times.  There is always someone watching you to see how you will handle life and stability is attractive.  Stability comes through learning who you are in Christ and trusting Him with everything.  If you can do something about your situation then do it, if you can’t it is time to give it over to God and that is true even in little everyday things even.

You don’t have to go up and down with your circumstances.  It is your choice and there is hope and favor when you trust God and allow Him to work in you during the hardships of life. 

Some of you may be going through the toughest time of your life right now but let me tell you that you are just one step away from seeing God’s favor on the other side of all of this.  God will come through!  Now, don’t get me wrong, not everything we go through is a test sometimes life just happens because we live in an imperfect world, but anything you are going through can make you stronger and better suited to serve God and to have His favor and blessing on your life.  It is your choice whether you allow your circumstances to make you better or bitter.

Quote:”Progress involves risks.  You can’t steal second base and keep your foot on first.”  Fredrick B. Wilcox

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Hebrews 12:1

“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,”

What is holding you back and weighing you down?  Is there an addiction, or maybe a “hidden sin”, could it be unforgiveness or maybe you are the one who needs to apologize?  We don’t always have to have some “major” sin in our lives for us to feel heavy and weighed down and it is just way too difficult to run life’s race if we are carrying all of that baggage!  Bill has been running for the last several months and I would think he was crazy if I saw him get ready to run and he came out in his heavy boots, winter jacket, some workout weights and dragging the dog (even if it is a Chihuahua) and yet how often do we try to get through our days doing basically the same thing?

Ask God today to show you what is holding you back.  Don’t allow Satan to hold you back because of your past, hakuna matata, don’t worry about it if it is forgiven it is in your past! (They do actually say that in Africa believe it or not and the first time I heard someone say it that song was stuck in my head for the rest of our trip!)  Don’t allow unforgiveness to weigh you down either!  The person you are not forgiving is probably not even aware or thinking about the fact that you are still upset so you are only punishing yourself – let it go!  If it is an addiction you are struggling with, take one day at a time and know that you have victory today! 

I know what it feels like to think, “I can’t do this anymore, I am tired and I don’t think I can continue.”  Don’t look at doing it for the next week or month, just know you can do it today and tomorrow when you get up, just do it “today”.  Victory comes one day at a time, God doesn’t call you to more than that and He will give you strength for the day you are in.  Do your part and get rid of anything holding you down or tangling you up!  Let it all go for today and start fresh today!  Go in God’s blessing knowing today is a new day and it is going to be great!

Quote:  “Life begins when you do.”  Hugh Downs

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Hebrews 11:1

Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.”

 Keep your eyes on God today, don’t get down thinking all is lost!  God is still on His throne and He hasn’t forgotten you!  Today is a new day and a fresh beginning and He can do mighty things if you will just believe! 

Some days I need to go to God and ask Him like the father of the child that was dying who said in Mark 9:24 “Lord I believe, help my unbelief.”  I don’t always have the faith I need to have but I know that God can give me that as well!  God knows your heart and He knows what is best for you as well as the timing and He is working even when you can’t tell He is!  Some things take time and developing someone else to the point of being able to work things out, but trust me He hasn’t forgotten and He is working on it even as you read this!

Hold your head high today and go in the confidence that God gives you that He is on your side.  Do your part by making sure you are following His leading and not getting ahead of Him in your situation.  I have a difficult time waiting sometimes and love to jump in to give God a little help and well, that seems to make things just take a little longer so wait, trust Him and let Him have your situation, He has your best interest at heart!

Let’s work today on our faith and trust in God and then watch as He does mighty things in our lives by growing us into the women of God He has called us to be!  Victory is yours today so start walking in it and claiming God’s favor over your marriage, your children your struggles and your finances.  Be obedient and seek His guidance in all you do so He can work and move in your life today.  Take one day at a time knowing that the best is yet to come and God will take care of it!

Quote:  “Without hope, people are only half alive.  With hope they dream and think and work.”  Charles Sawyer

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