Monthly Archives: February 2015
Monthly Archives: February 2015
Written By: Judy Smith
I was the champion of worry. I was raised by my grandparents on a very poor farm and I didn’t that know I was poor until I started school. When that realization hit me, it produced many negative feelings in my life. I was already very insecure and afraid of what was going to happen to me. Fear came flowing into me and I began to worry about everything. This continued throughout my adult life.
Philippians 4:5-9 “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God, and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy- meditate on these things.” If we do this, there won’t be room for worry.
FACTS ABOUT WORRY
40% of the things people worry about never happen.
30% of our worries are related to past maters, which Are now beyond our control.
12% of our worries have to do with our health, even when we are not actually ill.
10% of our worries are about friends and neighbors, and are not based on evidence or fact.
Only 8% of our worries have basis in reality, which means that more than 90% of the things we worry about never may never occur.
There are three areas of a Christian prayer life. 1) The prayer area in which “nothing” is written because the Bible says be anxious for nothing. 2) The prayer area with the word “everything” because the Bible says, in everything let your requests be made known to God. And 3) is the thanksgiving area where we are thankful to God. When we live within those three areas, we overcome worry. Matthew 6:25 Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you drink; not about your body; what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?
Worry is worthless! Live in God’s peace. John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you, not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
Once we realize that we are struggling with something and we feel upset, we need to start praying and immediately turn the situation over to God, thankful that He will provide according to His will and offer us peace. You and I are not called to a life of frustration and struggle. Jesus came so we could have righteousness, joy, and peace!
Seek His face. Let Him displace worry from the center of your being. Let Him shower peace into the pool of your mind. His nature is to bless, so we must receive with thanksgiving. It is not His will that we function alone. Include Him in all your moments. Psalms 23:4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for you are with me. Your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
“Sometimes the Lord calms the storm; sometimes He lets the storm rage and calms His child.” Proverbs 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 your paths. I used to sing of praise that went like this: If I know the Lord is taking care of me, what do I have to worry about? And if I know the Lord is going to see me through, why don’t I sing and shout! Glory Hallelujah Praise His Name. Jesus you are forever taking care of me, what do I have to worry about hmmmmmm? What do I have to worry about!
Written By: Remaliah Evans
The difference between the life I want and the life I have is this: the life I want is all about what I want, it is not about what I need.
How many times have we seen people that seem to have everything? The fulfilling career or ministry, the perfect home, an adoring husband, and their kids are angelic beings. They have the education, and success is their way of life. Yet, they are not happy. We think to ourselves how can Patty Perfect have everything and not be happy?
Well, we do not know if they are dealing with depression, an eating disorder, or an addiction. We do not know if they are workaholics, alcoholics, or suicidal. They are unhappy because they are searching and/or trying to cope to no avail. When we have the things that we thought would bring us joy and fulfillment, but we do not have an intimate relationship with Jesus, we become painfully aware that something is missing, something just isn’t right.
What’s missing? What’s not right? When Jesus is not a part of our daily lives we are missing unconditional love, we are missing acceptance, and we are missing peace. What’s not right is that we have no one to heal our heart and no one to make us whole. And so we search for someone to love us unconditionally. We eat, escape, exercise excessively, or smoke to relieve the pain. All the while Jesus stands at the door of our heart and knocks.
Jesus is knocking and we are distracted by what we want, distracted by the myriad of people and commitments that vie for our attention, distracted because we are searching for something to dull the pain and meet the need. But the “something” is a Someone. The One we search for is Jesus; He is the way, the truth, and the life. He is the lover our souls. He is our advocate. He is our healer. He is our intercessor. He is our Father. And He stands at the door of our heart and knocks.
Then we open the door and we let Him into the living room. But Lord, please don’t go into my room until I can clean it up. Oh and the closet, um, I’ll… there’s no need go in there. Here’s the thing: the Lord already knows what is in our room and in the closet. John 3:17 says that Jesus was not sent to condemn us, He was sent to save us. It is safe to let Him into the dark places of our lives and submit those areas to Him. Jesus brings truth, forgiveness, healing, and peace.
Our relationship with Jesus should grow after we accept Him as Lord and Savior. Colossians 2:6-7 Amplified Version reads “As you have therefore received Christ, even Jesus the Lord, so walk (regulate your lives and conduct yourselves) in union with and conformity to Him. Have the roots of your being firmly and deeply planted in Him, fixed and founded in Him, being continually built up in Him…” We need this constant connection to Christ, we have been created to walk with and abide in Christ, and when we don’t, we feel the void.
As I make my list of what I want for my life, God faithfully reminds me to seek Him. I can be the best-selling author, wealthy, married in a mansion and driving my McLaren, but if I have no walk with Jesus, I would not know joy or peace because I would be missing the One I need.
Written By Remaliah Evans
I’m single and I take full advantage of my singlehood. I never have to rush home, worry about dinner, coordinate schedules with the hubby, or try to help my kids with homework that I don’t understand. However I do look forward to the time when my life does include these activities. In the meantime, I’m single and most days I’m fine being single….. until Valentine’s Day rolls around. The minute I see the Valentine’s Day aisle at Wal-Mart, (which is now fully stocked by December 26th!) and the never-ending commercials pushing flowers, jewelry, and heart-shaped fruit, I start rolling my eyes. Here we go, the season where I am reminded that I am alone. As tempting as it may be to throw the woe-is-me-cause-I’m-single pity party, I’m all pity partied out from Valentine’s Days pasts. Plus, it turns out, I am not alone. At times I feel alone because it seems I am the only person I know without special plans for plans for Valentine’s Day, and I wanted to get married, like, yesterday. But I am trusting God with my life and for His plans because He understands me, He delights in every detail of my life, (Psalm 37:23 NLT) and He is always with me. (Joshua 1:9)
I am not alone because the Holy Spirit is with me all the time and He is my comforter and ever-present help. The Holy Spirit even shows up to my pity parties! He does not join the party of course, but He encourages me and reminds of the Word and the promises that God has for my life. The times when I’m crying my eyes out about failures, shattered dreams, or a broken heart, He has been there. Not only has He been there but He has healed my broken hearts. There was one particular heartbreak that caught me off guard. I think because I did not realize how much I cared about this person until it was over. So when the relationship ended I told God, “I don’t know how many times I can I have my heartbroken.” And He responded, “I heal your broken heart and each time that it has been broken, I have made it stronger.” Wow. I was stunned and comforted. My natural propensity and defense mechanism was to try not to feel anything. Despite this, God has been healing my heart, helping me to forgive, and teaching me how to love. Jesus came to bind up the brokenhearted. (Isaiah 61:1)
When I am still and I listen to the Holy Spirit, loneliness and heartache begin to dissipate because I am in the presence of the One who knows me better than I know myself, the One who knows what I’m going to say before I say it, and the One who FIRST loved me. If wanting to be married is important to you, then it is important to God. If restoring your marriage is your heart’s cry, this is important to God. Luke 12:27 tells us that the hairs on our head are numbered. If God cares about the number of hairs on your head then surely He cares about our relationships. He loves you! I urge you to seek Him and hear his heart and direction for you; you will be encouraged.
God did not design you to be alone. Hence your relationships with Him, family, and friends. If you look at the people in your life, chances are that you will find God has blessed you with at least one or two people who love you and support you. It may be your husband, friend, mom, dad, sister, brother, pastor, teacher, or mentor. So don’t believe the lie that you are alone. Embrace and appreciate those who love you, and love them back. Let’s not be so consumed with who loves us and who doesn’t, that we forget to love as Christ loves us.
Romans 12:15 says to rejoice with those who rejoice. This is some good advice because 1) we all know how it feels to be so excited you think you might actually pop… and then you tell someone your good news and they just burst your bubble. Let’s not be that bubble-bursting person. 2) We also know how good it feels to share good news, and the person you shared with is genuinely as excited and happy as we are. It feels great! I believe that this is another way to give love. Rejoicing with those who rejoice increases our own joy and keeps us connected to others. It also reminds us that we are not alone.
As we approach this Valentine’s Day let’s celebrate each other, and let’s celebrate God’s unfailing love.
Written By Judy Smith
It Is A Mater of Focus. Do we focus on the adversity to the point where we are obsessed with it and imagine the worst, or do we choose to focus on what we are learning in and through this adversity? We must look to Jesus the author and finisher of our faith, as instructed in Hebrews 12:2.
We must focus on the right things. Whatever we focus on becomes magnified in our minds. The more we think and talk about our problems, the larger they become. Let’s be wise and meditate on God’s Word and His promises for our lives, and continually thank Him for these promises and all that He has done.
“I thank you Father that you are bigger than my problems, trials, and uncertainties. You are good and my heart is filled with thanksgiving for you and your love.” He turns our mourning into dancing, Hallelujah! Do not look at the outward appearance of the adversity, but ask the Lord to give you spiritual eyes to see what He is doing. Then wait for His perfect timing. Look at the final outcome of Job’s life. Job 8:21 “…He will once again fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy.”
I have journaled often for the past 35 years, and through journaling I have seen that His answers are always prophetic and right on. I am going to share with you His encouraging message to me from about ten years ago, when my husband suffered a severe heart attack that left him with only 25% of his heart function. I had little hope of having my husband much longer; but now, ten years later he is still with us and he now has 45% of his heart function. God is faithful! We can trust Him in all things.
Here is what God said to me during that difficult time, ten years ago: “Strive to trust Me in more and more areas of your life. Anything that tends to make you anxious is a growth opportunity. Instead of running away from these challenges, embrace them and be eager to gain all the blessings hidden in the difficulties. If you believe that I am sovereign over every aspect of your life, it is possible to trust Me in all situations. Don’t waste energy regretting the way things are, or thinking about what might have been. Start at the present moment, accepting things exactly as they are and search for My way in the midst of your circumstances. Trust is like a staff you can lean on as you journey uphill with Me. If you are trusting in Me consistently, the staff will bear as much of your weight as needed. Lean on trust, and be confident in Me with all your heart and mind.”
O my Friends, with every challenge in my life I fall more and more in love with Jesus. He may not answer as quickly as I want Him to, but He always answers for my good and His Glory. Remember: This too shall pass.
A few encouraging verses:
2 Corinthians 4:17-18 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.
Psalm 75:1 We praise you, God, we praise you, for your Name is near; people tell of your wonderful deeds.
Psalm 92:1 It is good to praise the Lord and make music to your name, O Most High
Psalm 95:2 Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song.
Psalm 100:4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.
Psalm 30:11 You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy.