Righteous Heart or Wicked Mouth

Proverbs 15:28 “The heart of the righteous ponders how to answer, but the mouth of the wicked pours out evil things.”

We have all been there, someone says something that feels like an attack on our character and we lash out with our words.  This “tongue lashing” leaves people hurting and upset.  The silent tongue can cause just as much harm when it is silent out of anger and bitterness.

We walk this fine line, in life, with our tongue.  This organ is so powerful it has the ability to bring comfort, peace, and praise as well as cause immense pain.  With this great power we should use caution and think about our responsibility in using it.

The old saying of “sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me,” could not be further from the truth.  Our words can hurt more than any physical wound.  Use your words carefully today and allow the righteousness of your heart to shine.

Gracious Father, thank you for the gift of speech.  Thank you for giving me this tool for communication.  Help me Father, to ponder a righteous answer so that from my lips comes words that glorify You and You alone.  I know my natural tendance is to use my tongue for my glory and not for yours.  Help me today to use my words to bring glory and healing to my broken relationships or healing to a broken soul.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen 

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God’s Fruit or Life’s Pains

2 Corinthians 3:17 “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”

The Lord is the Spirit and the Holy Spirit lives in you.  So, this means you are free.

We are not free from hurt, pain, illnesses, or even abuse.  We are free to come to the Lord with all our hurts, confusion, and afflictions.  God hears our cry and because we have the Spirit we have the Lord.  Find comfort in knowing that, no matter what you face, you are NEVER alone.

If we look at this a different way;  we have the Spirit, which means,  we also have the fruits that come with the Holy Spirit.  We don’t have to focus on our pain and brokenness.  Life is going to throw horrible and painful things our way but, through it all we can choose to focus on the pain or the fruit.  Galatians 5:22-23 “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”  I don’t know about you but, focusing on God’s fruit is much better than focusing on the hurts in life.

Father, thank you for the reminder that you are always with me and ready to offer Your fruits of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.  Lord, life seems to get so crazy sometimes and the hurts cloud my ability to see You and everything Your relationship has to offer.  As I go through my day, help me to see You in everything that I do.  Give me the wisdom that comes with knowing You.   In Jesus’ Name, Amen

You Are Never Alone

John 14:27 “Peace I leave you; my peace I give you.  I do not give to you as the world gives.  Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

Knowing, believing, and living that God is by your side, are all different.

There are times when God seems so distant and uninvolved in our lives; there are times when we can hear Him clearly speak to us. You have an enemy that wants you to continually cast doubt on anything to do with God, love, grace, joy, and peace. When you feel lost an alone, confused and frustrated, call on your Father, He is always there listening.

Father, help me to seek You with all that I am in every situation. If I am feeling lost and alone, help me to come to Your table to seek Your comfort. When I am feeling overwhelmed, help me to come sit in Your presence to find clarity. When I am fearful, help me to come into Your open arms and find peace. When I am under attack, help me to come under Your cloak of protection. Father, thank you for always giving me a way to be with you and find strength in my relationship with you. In Jesus’ Name, Amen

God Does Not Expect Perfection

1 Peter 1:14-15 “As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance.  But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do;…”

Striving to live a perfect life is not what God asks of us.

We often think that if we are Christians we should be perfect.  God never said he wants his followers to be perfect.  He wants us to be transformed.  He wants us to recognize our evil desires and reject them instead of giving into them.  He wants us to be set apart and holy.  He wants us to trust him.  He wants us to reflect and seek forgiveness when we have sinned against his commands.

I don’t know about you, but I am grateful that I serve a God that does not want perfection, but instead wants reflection.  When I make a mistake I can seek forgiveness and with that comes the freedom to try and trust.

Heavenly Father, thank you for loving me through my difficult days and drawing me ever closer to you.  Draw me to you throughout my day, place reminders in my path to seek you in all that I do, say, and feel.  Father, I know that I have evil desires that take my focus off of you and onto things of this world.  Continue to transform me Lord; make me holy in your eyes.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen

Shielded By God

1 Peter 1:5-6 “..through faith (you) are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.  In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.”

No matter what life throws your way you are “shielded by God.”  He is protecting you every step even though “for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.”

Every moment of every day we are faced with decisions.  From the moment we awake until our bodies finally fall into sleep we make choices.  We decide if we become offended or praise God.

I am learning to recognize cracks that allow others opinions, actions, and words into my life that I know to be false.  These actions, words, or opinions have the ability to steal the joy Christ has given me.  If I choose to focus on God’s shield I can choose to reject things I know to be false.  When I choose God over others false words, actions, and options my day will be filled with joy and peace, not anger or frustration.

Father God thank you for your shield that continually protects me from the world.  Help me to recognize when I allow doubt, fear, and false thoughts into my life.  Open my eyes to the difference rejoicing can make in the midst of trials.  You alone are my protector and guide, walk with me today and protect me.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen

Connection Leads to Relationship

1 John 5:12 “He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.”

Have you ever looked back on events in your life and wonder, “How did I make it through that?”  The answer is, through Christ.  Because you have accepted Christ as your Savior, you have a strength that goes beyond human understanding.  This strength gives you the “power” to walk through a fire and come out on the other side stronger.

When we stay connected to Christ he promises to give us not only an everlasting life, but love, joy, and peace.  How can you go wrong?

Father, thank you for loving me and saving me.  I know that I cannot make it through this life without You leading the way.  I want to continue to learn to follow You and hear Your small voice.  Help me when I try to go my own way and ignore Your calling.  Help me to pray throughout my day So Is am continually connected to You.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen

Stand Out

1 John 2:29 “If you know that he is righteous, you know that everyone who does what is right has been born of him.”

Following Christ is not always easy.  We are called to stand out, to live differently, and to do the hard things.  When we practice righteousness, “right living”, we stand out and people notice.  We are able to forgive the unforgivable, find hope in situations that seem hopeless, and love the seemingly unlovable.  Living this way shows the strength of Christ in us.

Father, thank you for the Holy Spirit that strengthens me so I can live and follow You.  Conintue to fill me so that I can live the life You have designed for me and to show the love of Christ wherever I go and in whatever I do.  Help me to do what is right in order to bring glory to You.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen

Live Like Jesus

1 John 2:6”Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.”

If you claim to be a follower of Christ you are told to live as Jesus lived.  Have you ever thought about what that means?  Jesus walked in love.  He forgave the men who tortured and killed him, yet we cannot forgive the person who cut us off in traffic, or said bad things about us, or hurt our feelings.  This list could go on and on, but the truth is there is no reason to list all the wrongs done to us maybe we need to think about the wrongs we have done instead and seek forgiveness for those things.  No one is perfect and Jesus never asks us to be perfect, He died because we are sinners.  He just wants to love us, provide for us, and give us a life that is full of grace, peace, joy, and best of all His love.  Sit back today and see God’s love for you and then share it with others by loving them in return.

Father, forgive me for seeing the wrong done to me instead of the wrong that I have done to others.  Help me to seek forgivenss from those I have hurt.  Open my eyes to the love that is all around me and given to me because of You.  Thank your or loving me even when I don’t deserve to be loved.  Thank your for adopting me and loving this imperfect child.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen

Peace Filled Life

Isaiah 50:10 “Who among you fears the LORD and obeys the word of his servant?  Let him wo walks in the dark, wo has no light, trust int he name of the LORD and rely on his God.”

We all want to be remembered for something. We want to leave our mark on the world.  What if your “mark” is just a simple one?  What if you were meant to be remembered as a good person, one who gave selflessly to otherS?  Is there something wrong with that?

When we fear the Lord, we live a life that is pleasing to Him.  I don’t know about you but I don’t what to live a life that pleases man because man dies. I want to live a life pleasing to my Heavely Father.  To live a life pleasing to God I must carry His light.  Carrying His light is not easy because we try to do things our way.  If we would just put our focus on Him carrying His light to the world would be a peace filled life.

Father, Help me put my selfish ways aside and to carry Your light into the dark places of this ice.  Father You have put me where I am give me the strength and encouragement to walk the path You have laid before me. I want to trust you with my life.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen

Refuel with Prayer

Mark 1:35 “And in the morning, rising up a great while before day, he went out, and departed into a solitary place, and there prayed.”

No one can give of themselves all the time.  We all need to be refueled.  That refueling looks different for everyone.  For some they become refueled by running, others ride a bike, still others read a book.  Whatever that looks like for you, take the time to be refueled because if you don’t you will become a frustrated person never seeing the positive in your life.  These things give us energy to keep going, however true refueling comes from spending time with God.  Escape can come through a long walk, bike ride, time at the gym, or working on a hobby.  Just remember that to face the challenges of life we not only need physical strength, we need spiritual strength.  Even Christ had to refuel.  He spent time walking with God.  Christ knew that no matter what He would face He could do it because God was His strength.

Father, thank you for the reminder that it is ok to do things for myself, by myself.   Thank you for the strength You give when I spend time with You.  When I feel weak and weary draw me to You and refuel me.  Remind me when I walk alone I quickly become frustrated and angry but with You all things are possible.  You give my life meaning and allow me to face the challenges each and everyday so I can do Your will.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen