A Good Start to the Week

God has already gone before you and He covers your tracks behind you. With the enemy in hot pursuit to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10), God is making sure you’re covered at every angle. The devil might have snipers posted above your path waiting to ambush, but God is higher than them, has a keener eye, and much better aim. The devil may have pick pockets dotted in amongst the crowd, ready to steal your life’s victories but God has X-ray vision and He knows who to avoid. The devil may have liars ready to scream deception, insecurity and failure at you, but God’s tiniest whispers of truth, acceptance and love are louder and more powerful. The devil may try to make you feel surrounded by darkness, but God alone has control over the light-switch and He’s not going to flip it.

Let us hold onto the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful – Hebrews 10:23

God has promised you a hope and a future, without harm (Jeremiah 29:11). He has promised you provision (Philippians 4:19) and favor (Psalm 5:12). He has promised protection over your life (Psalm 27:1-3). Today, pray that He would help you hold onto hope without wavering. Pray that you would not only believe in Him, but that you would believe Him and His faithfulness to keep His promises. Speak against your doubts and your fears with confidence, knowing that He who promised is faithful. He will not let you fall, He will not let you perish.

So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. – Isaiah 41:10

Be encouraged today that God is completely on your side, for you and never against you (Romans 8:31). When trials come your way this week as they inevitably will, remember all these promises about who God is, what He’s done for you and what He’s doing for you right now and live in the light of His faithfulness.

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A Good Start to the Week

God, My God

I wrote this out this morning, and for some reason felt led to post it on my blog. My prayer is that it encourages you to learn more of who God is, and to speak over whatever you’re facing in faith that He will enable you to overcome your obstacles, to claim victory over your battles, to experience freedom from your strongholds and to inspire faith and action in what He’s calling you to do. God is a good God, He won’t let you fall.

God, my God, I KNOW that You are faithful. I KNOW that we are following the plan that You have laid out for us. This is why I KNOW that You will provide for our every need. We will not fall behind on our bills, we will honor our commitments to pay off our debts, we will not be anxious but we will wait in anticipation and with excitement for You to move. I KNOW that You will provide, I KNOW that You will come through for us. I KNOW that Your faithfulness does not depend on my works or on my perfection. I KNOW that You love me despite my weak faith and multiple shortcomings. You are a GOOD GOD and Your promises You will keep. You are the UNMATCHED KING in every area – Your generosity and desire to bless us are vast, Your faithfulness has no expiration date, Your grace and mercy are limitless. You own everything because You created it all. MY GOD, WHO CAN MATCH YOU? You are the UNMATCHED KING and You are for us, not against us. You are on our side and You will not let us fall. You will hold us up. You will sustain us. You are worthy of every praise that is within us and more.

God, My God

Sunday Evening Thoughts

The word of the Lord stands forever. God’s word is perfect, pure, true and everlasting. His promises are sure, reliable, steadfast and durable. Everything that He speaks comes to pass. Everything that He says has life, eternally. His word is alive. His word is guidance, comfort, assurance, and truth in a world of uncertainty, pain, confusion and deception. For all my disobedience, His word assures me of the grace I have found. For all my fears, His word assures me of the safety and protection that surrounds me. For all my loneliness, His word assures me of the everlasting presence of the Holy Spirit – the only company actually worth having. God is my shepherd, and His word stands forever.

Sunday Evening Thoughts

Psalm 27

The Lord is my light and my salvation – whom should I fear?

The Lord is the stronghold of my life – of whom should I be afraid?

When evildoers came against me to devour my flesh, my foes and my enemies stumbled and fell.

Though an army deploys against me, my heart is not afraid;

Though a war breaks out against me, still I am confident.

I have asked one thing from the Lord; it is what I desire:

To dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life,

Gazing on the beauty of the Lord, and seeking Him in His temple.

For He will conceal me in His shelter in the day of adversity;

He will hide me under the cover of His tent;

He will set me high on a rock.

Then my head will be high above my enemies around me;

I will offer sacrifices in His tent with shouts of joy.

I will sing and make music to the Lord.

Lord, hear my voice when I call; be gracious to me and answer me.

My heart says this about You: “You are to seek My face”

Lord, I will seek Your face.

Do not hide Your face from me; do not turn your servant away in anger.

You have been my helper; do not leave me or abandon me, God of my salvation.

Even if my mother and father abandon me, the Lord cares for me.

Because of my adversaries, show me Your way, Lord, and lead me on a level path.

Do not give me over to the will of my foes, for false witnesses rise up against me, breathing violence.

I am certain that I will see the Lord’s goodness in the land of the living.

Wait for the Lord; be strong and courageous. Wait for the Lord.

Psalm 27

Permission to Believe

He believed in God, who gives life to the dead and calls things into existence that do not exist. – Romans 4:17 (HCSB)

This verse is permission to believe without hesitation. This verse sums up what God is capable of doing. This verse is a command to have faith that is not restricted by science, by reason, by man, by our tiny human minds that don’t understand. This verse is empowering and comforting all in one – empowering because we have access to this God who brings death to life and creates something from nothing, comforting because this God is on our side. Why would we fear anything of this world and beyond it when this God is our God? Be encouraged by this verse today – what is it that you desperately need? What miracle are you asking for? What trial are you facing? I pray that your faith will rise as a result of reading this verse and that it will no longer be restricted by things so much smaller than our God.

Permission to Believe

Psalm 119 – Lying in the Dust

I lie in the dust; revive me by Your word. – Psalm 119: 25 (NLT)

I weep with sorrow; encourage me by Your word. – Psalm 119:28 (NLT)

Some days kick us down, and we don’t feel that we have the strength to get back up. We all have those days. You know, the ones where everything seems to go wrong and our hearts are discouraged because we’re not getting anywhere. We’re battling but not gaining any victories. We don’t feel like our faith is rising or our strength is renewed – if we were to be honest, we’d say that we were ‘lying in the dust’. Yesterday we spoke about how obeying God’s word can bring us joy and purity of heart but you and I both know that there are times when we don’t feel joy. God uses His word to encourage us and to build us back up – to pick through the rubble of our circumstances and grant us renewed strength and renewed faith. This is why it is so vital that we keep His word hidden in our hearts (Psalm 119:11) and that we know where to look when we need that kind of encouragement. Here are some of my favorite verses that I have written down in several different places for when I’m ‘lying in the dust’:

If your heart is broken, you’ll find God right there; if you’re kicked in the gut, He’ll help you catch your breath. – Psalm 34:18 (MSG)

‘Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed’ says the Lord, who has compassion on you. – Isaiah 54:10 (NIV)

And we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and the one who remains in love remains in God, and God remains in him. – 1 John 4:16 (HCSB)

Forget the former things, don’t dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! – Isaiah 43:18-19a (NLT)

They will fight you, but they will fail. For I am with you, and I will take care of you. I, the Lord, have spoken! – Jeremiah 1:19 (NLT)

Psalm 119 – Lying in the Dust

Clinging to a Broken Spirit

“I will take you as My people, and I will be your God. You will know that I am Yahweh your God, who has delivered you from the forced labor of the Egyptians. I will bring you to the land that I swore to give to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and I will give it to you as a possession. I am Yahweh.” Moses told this to the Israelites, but they did not listen to him because of their broken spirit and hard labor. – Exodus 6:7-9 (HCSB)

I think that this passage of scripture is absolutely fascinating. Here are a group of people that are being told the promise of blessing beyond their wildest dreams, but they do not listen. Why don’t they listen? Verse 9 says because of their broken spirit and hard labor. The main thing I want to focus on is a broken spirit. How many times has your spirit felt so broken that although those around you may have encouraged you to read the Bible and the promises of God, you just didn’t want to? I’ll be honest, there are times when I flat out don’t want to listen, I don’t want to read the word because my spirit is so broken and I’m frustrated. Perhaps when your spirit is broken you don’t feel worthy to come to God in prayer and believe His promises in the word. Maybe you have felt like it’s all your fault and so to ask for help would be expecting something you don’t deserve. When our spirits are broken and we allow that to overtake our thinking, our vision can only stretch so far. These promises were supposed to bring joy and comfort to the Israelites but their vision was blurred because they were not willing to sacrifice their brokenness to the Lord. Psalm 51:17 says, “The sacrifice pleasing to God is a broken spirit. God, You will not despise a broken and humbled heart”. How beautiful is that verse? It means that God can use everything – even the most broken spirit, despite what you’ve done or what’s been done to you. In fact, it goes so far as to say that a broken spirit is pleasing to God! He delights in our vulnerability before Him because that is when we humbly admit that we can’t do life on our own and we desperately need Him to break through. He wants us to want Him. As humans we have a tendency to hold onto what is holding us back. Are you holding onto bitterness, unforgiveness, a broken spirit, or anything else that is stopping you from hearing and believing the promises of God? If so, don’t hesitate any longer to sacrifice that to the Lord! He delights when we are vulnerable before Him and He longs to pour out His promises on us, if only we would give up what we cling so tightly to.

Clinging to a Broken Spirit