Knock and Receive

Matthew 7:7-8 “Ask and it will be give to you; seekand you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks receives;  the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.”

Often time in life we look to others things for our comfort, self worth, significance, and even freedom.  God tells us in His word to seek Him and we will find what we are looking for.  We look for meaning, comfort, love, freedom, and on and on.  How often do we just sit in His presence and say, “Thank you for…”. Everything you have is a gift from your Heavenly Father.

Where are you looking for peace? Your spouse, children, job, addictions?  Are you looking for joy in the same place?  What about freedom?  None of these things can be found in earthly things.  Mathew 25:31 tells us, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.”  So, find freedom, forgiveness, peace, love, joy, or whatever you are looking for in Christ.

Jehovah Shalom, Father of peace, I come in complete worship to Your thrown of grace.  Father, You alone are worthy to be praised.  It is so easy to become consumed with the chores of life and to forget that everything I am, everything I have is a gift from You.  Forgive me for seeking comfort from the things in this world.  Remind me that my joy is found in You and nothing else.  No earthly things can give what my souls thirst for.  You are my redeemer, comforter, and provider.  Hold me today and remind me to come to You for all that I need.  In Jesus Name, Amen

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Routines of Life

Ecclesiastes 1: 1 “‘Meaningless!  Meaningless!’  Says the Teacher.  ‘Utterly meaningless!  Everything is meaningless.’”

I guess I am not the only one who has ever thought that life was meaningless or felt that I don’t matter.  I have asked the question, “Will anyone care when I am gone, have I made a difference in anyone’s life?”

We never seem to be content, always wanting more, always trying new things, new hobbies, new adventures, and trying to get ahead.  What does all of this mean?  God created me for a purpose and a time such as this.  He has me where He wants me yet, sometimes I still feel lost and alone.  Life is not meant to be lived alone or in isolation.  We were created for companionship.  Even Adam and Eve walked with God.  Jesus had his disciples. We were created to be in relationship with others.  The problem is when we count on others to fill the role only Christ can fill we are left feeling empty because no one but Christ can fill our lives with meaning.

Heavenly Father, thank you for your words that remind me that I am never alone and that life without You is meaningless. Forgive me for always striving for more and missing opportunities to spend time with You.  Help me to look to You for my peace, comfort, and wholeness.  Lord, I ask for strength in the mundane of life, that You will be glorified in my daily activities, thoughts, and words.   Cleanse and strengthen me, oh LORD.  In Jesus Name, Amen

Sawdust and Planks

Luke 6: 41-42 “ Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?  How can you say to your brother,;Brother, let me take the speck out of you eye,’ when you yourself fail to see the plank in your own eye?  You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.”

How quickly we are able to see where others fall short but, are unable or unwilling to see our own flaws.  It seems easy to point out where someone falls short of your expectations but how often do we look inward to see where you fall short for those around us?  We as a society are quick to judge and see others failures but do not want to admit our own short comings.

We cannot love until we love ourselves.  We cannot give peace until we have peace.  We cannot give joy until we have joy.  The fruits of the spirit are gifts for us to share but, we cannot share what we do not have.  So, as you go through your day stop and examine yourself before you judge someone else and remember that you have not walked in their shoes so cannot truely know their story, hurts, pains, or joys.

Father, thank you for loving me and sending reminders that we are all imperfect.  Forgive me for looking at others and passing judgement on them.  I ask for You to come by your spirit and walk with me through my day and remind me that others are hurting and walking in pain.  I don’t know their story so, help me to live showing your spirit of love, joy, and peace.  Lord, I ask that you have your way with me today.  Allow me to be your hands and feet in my job, marriage, relationships, and kind to all those I encounter today.  In Jesus Name, Amen

Love from the Heart

Luke 6:45 “The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart.  For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.”

Has your mind ever gotten stuck?  Do you ponder what someone said or did, you cannot forget the words or actions of another, negative things seem to go round and round in your mind.  This is Satans way of keeping control of you.  When he can keep you fixed on the negative eventually your heart will spew negative.

If you are struggling to forgive, look into your heart.  If you are struggling to show love or compassion, look into your heart.  If you are having a hard time showing love, look into your heart.  If you are struggling with anything that goes against God’s word, look into your heart.  Do you keep doing things that go against God’s word, look into your heart.

Father, I come before you seeking peace in my heart.  Father, I am tired of doing the things I know I should not do.  I struggle with so many things that I cannot seem to find peace.  Open my eyes to the things in my heart that keep me from living free in You.  Replace the evil things in my heart with the peace, joy, and goodness that comes from You so that out of my mouth will flow love, joy, peace, compassion, and understanding.  In Jesus Name, Amen

Footholds

Philippians 2:4 “Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.”

Sometimes in life we have conflict over two different views of the same thing.  Rather than talk things out we just don’t say anything.  When this happens seeds of bitterness can grow.  Our Father tells us in Ephesians 4:26-27 ”… Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.”

A disagreement takes two people.  One of you may be able to work through the conflict on your own while the other needs to talk it through.  This is where we need to be mindful of the others interests.  When we process by ourselves we leave a stumbling block for the other.  Don’t be a stub=bling block for anyone seek the best way to resolve conflict for all those involved in a disagreement rather tan be selfish and allow the other to continue to stumble.  When we allow another to stumble we allow Satan a foothold not only in their lives but in the relationship as well.  This is how walls of separation are built.  Don’t allow the thief to steal from you.

Father, I come seeking Your wisdom in opening my eyes to areas where I put my interests in front of others.  Help me to see the interests of others before my own.  Help me to see areas where the devil has a stronghold in my life because of anger, hurt, or strife.  Father, You are the ultimate healer and can restore any and all relationships to bring glory to Your name.  Give me this day what I need to bring healing to my heart, mind, body, and soul.  In Jesus Name, Amen

Desire

Galatians 5:16 “So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sin ;nb

When I read scripture, I am in awe of Christ and his disciples. All of the amazing things they did. Christ never worried. He always knew that the Father would provide. I look at how many times in a day I worry or feel insignificant. Then my spirit reminds me that I have Christ and I have His power within me. This means that we have power over sin. We don’t have to sin , worry, fear, or be anxious because of Christ. Now, I know that is easier said than done because we have to break the cycles and habits that we have created for ourselves. We need to exam our beliefs and make sure they line up with God’s Word.

Everyday is a gift. Every trial brings us closer to Christ. Every time we reach our destination safely is a gift. I could continue to list all the things we have to be greatful for but, my point is, every moment of everyday is a precious gift of God’s grace and love. When we look at our lives in this way things don’t seem so negative and hopeless. God has promised to care for us and to never leave us.  Unlike humans, God cannot break a promise. So, today be greatful for all you have no matter how small because it is all a gift of God’s love for you.

Father, thank you for all the blessings you have for me today and everyday.  Cover me today with Your love, lead me.  Father, what are you doing today, I want to join you and walk in peace with you through my day.  Father, strenghten my relationship with you and when I feel worried, anxious, or lost stir in my spirit a reminder of your love for and give me a strength that can only be found in a relationship with you.  In Jesus Name, Amen

Humility

Philippians 2:3 “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider other better than yourselves.”(NIV)

Philippians 2:3-4 (MSG) “Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends.  Don’t push your way to the front; don’t sweet-talk your way to the top.  Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead.  Don’t be obsessed with getting your own advantage.  Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.”

I have never really thought about what it takes to be humble or really what it is.  I know it means being modest but never really thought about the fact that a humble person does not really know the impact that they have on others.  As we go through our day to day life we have the opportunity to change lives positively  or negatively.

If we claim to be Christians are we truly being humble with words and actions or do we do things to get ahead?  I know  there are times when I have an idea and I share that idea with someone then they take credit for the outcome.  This not only confuses me but actually at some level makes me frustrated.  I have to say that is my humanity coming through. Does is really matter who gets the earthly credit or does it matter that someone was blessed?

That leads me to another question, why do we seek the approval of man?  Man did not die on a cross, descend to hell in my place, raise from the dead, walk on water, the list is endless.  So, as I go through my day I want to remember that God gets the glory for everything I not me.  God is who matters, and when I humble myself I don’t care about recognition, I care about God’s approval because in the end I what to hear God say, “Well done good and faithful servant.”

Abba Father, Thank you for all that You have done for me.  I know that my mind cannot truely comprehend the sacrifice tha You made on this earth to save the lost.  Father as I go for the today I ask that Your Holy Spirit rise up in me and make its presence felt by all those who cross my path.  Help me to be humble in spirit and look to You when I feel lost or confused. I want to give You all the glory and praise.  In Jesus Name, Amen

Grace

Ephesians 1:13 “And you also were included in Christ when you heated the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation.  Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit.”

We have all experienced somethings that we did not deserve.  Maybe you have found money on the ground.  Something so simple yet undeserved.

I have been thinking about what it means to be given the grace of God.  I understand that grace is God’s favor toward the unworthy.  I know that I am not worthy of God’s grace yet it is given freely.  What does God’s grace really mean for You and me?

As Christians we know that Christ died for our sins however; we don’t really seem to understand the magnitude of what this means.  I am learning that we don’t take full advantage of this precious give of love and mercy.  Not only did Christ die to set us free from sin, through His death we were given grace.  We are given the same “power” as Christ.  Through grace we have been saved and baptism seals Christwithin us.  When we accept Christ we are made one with Christ giving us the same authority as Christ.  We are to live as Jesus.  I  ponder how to respond to the call of “being God’s hands and feet.”

Abba, dearest Father, thank you for your free gift of grace.    I know that I do not deserve anything from you yet You give freely to me.  Thank you for always being with me and strengthening me in this life.  Guide me as I seek what it means to live in the grace you have given to me.  Help me live a Christ life and to truely be Your hands and feet and a gift to all those I meet and have relationship with. Take away my selfish desires and replace them with a love that can only be found in You.  In Jesus Name, Amen

God Hears You

Pslam 107:28-31 “Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress.  He stilled the storm to a whisper, the waves of the sea were hushed.  They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven.  Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men.”

I am in the process of listening to the book of Job and am amazed at his strength and faith.  Despite loosing everything he remains faithful to God.  How often do we blame God for our difficulties or cry out with a “Why me?”

In the midst of our suffering God is working.  God prepares a way for us in every circumstance.  As see people around the world loose everything they have yet Pull toghther to help one another I see God at work.  Through all the natural disaters  there are countless stories of people helping and loving on one another.  God has prepared Christ followers for a time such as this, that we would be his hands and feet.

There are so many ways we can pour out love on people that are in the midst of hurting, the most important thing we can do is pray.  God is listening and watching to see how we respond.  None of what is happening surprises God, it is all part of His plan.  We are called to respond to a broken and hurting world.  Walk by faith and not by sight.

Father, as I begin my day I am so thankful for all the blessings that You have given me.  I lift up all those that are in need and are hurting and broken.  Not just those affected by natural disaster but, also for those held in bondage.  Father, you did not intend for us to live such a life full of pain and brokenness.  Touch our hearts and minds, draw us ever closer to you through the trials of life.  Build in us warriors for prayer and help us to walk in step with you.  In Jesus Name, Amen

God is With You

Deuteronomy 31:6 “Be strong and courageous.  Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Have you ever been so focused on your pain that you are unable to see God?  Ever wonder where He is when you are in, what feels like, your darkest hour?  I can honestly tell you that He is walking with you.  Our feelings can deceive us and convince us that we are alone.

Satan wants us to feel deserted and alone.  He will cause us to doubt the love that Christ has for us.  In those moments of life remember God’s promise to never leave you or forsake you.  Jesus by His nature is love so whe you are hurting and feel alone ask Jesus to be your comfort and strength.

God’s word tells us that we will have troubles but, He has over come this world.  Even if your illness, trouble, or choices take us from this life we will be healed in the next.  So, face your troubles with confidence because Christ is walking with you and will give you strength.

Father in Heaven, thanks your or coming and walking among us.  As I face today with all that it has to offer I want to seek You with everthing that I am.  Lord, protect me and my loved ones.  Show me what you are doing today so I can join you and feel the joy, peace, and love that is only found in a relationship with You.  In Jesus Name, Amen