Endless Blue Skies…

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Blue Skies

PERSEVERANCE 

John 16:33 – “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Reflections: So many times, as Christians, we are shocked and amazed that life can be hard some days. I think that deep down, we expect God to make our lives a sweet-smelling bed of roses, or at least that He would snap His fingers and make all of our problems go away instantly. But the reality is that God never promised us endless blue skies without the threat of a cloudy day. In fact, Jesus assures us that in this world, we WILL have troubles. The good news, though, is that he also assures us that we can take heart and have hope, because He has already overcome the world (John 16:33). He promised to stand by our side, and sometimes carry us, through every hardship, ultimately leading us to a life more abundant in Him. Because of Him, we can persevere through whatever life throws our way, knowing that in the end, we will have the victory.

So, yes, we will have struggles; and yes, it may seem like more than we can bear some days; but praise God that we don’t have to bear it alone! All we have to do is lean on God, give Him our burdens, and receive His promised peace, His unspeakable joy, and His unending love as we soldier through the cloudy days to get to our next blue sky.

Shine your light!

Thoughts, reactions, or testimonies? Leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing from you!

Footprints

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Give It to God…

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praise you God- i give it all to You

SURRENDER 

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.”

Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Reflections: The other day, after averting crisis number 1,892 :), I realized that I tend to follow a pattern, of sorts, when unexpected challenges pop up in my life. First, I may experience a brief moment of panic as I realize what’s happening, and then I get this laser focus as I set about trying to find a solution to the problem at hand…in my own power. Oh, yes, I may mumble an offhand, “Please, God!” as I go about this process; but oftentimes, it’s not until I hit a wall in my own efforts that I stop, find my center, and turn my focus and attention to the one who promises to take all my burdens, handle all of my cares, and assuage all of my fears.

In that moment, any remaining panic or frustration is replaced with a sweet peace, as I FINALLY seek God in the midst of my storm. As I begin to surrender my problems to Him, it becomes so much easier to accept my limitations and trust God to work it out and see me through. And you know what? He ALWAYS DOES! EVERY time! WITHOUT fail! Sometimes He is subtle with His solutions, and other times, He works in ways that are nothing short of amazing! It makes me wonder why I insist on going through this habitual process instead of just seeking God in the first place. 🙂

If you, like me, tend to try to solve your problems in your own power before tapping into the Power of God, maybe it’s time to adopt a new approach (I know I’m giving it a go!). 🙂 We’d save so much time, energy, and STRESS if we would lean on God instead of relying on our own strength, if we would focus on Him instead of our circumstances, and if we would trust Him to guide, direct, and see us through whatever problems we may face instead of thinking that we can do it all on our own. Who really wants to do that anyway? 🙂 He’s our Way Maker, and He promises that if we surrender our cares to Him, He will give us peace, clarity, and rest for our souls.

Philippians 4:6-7 – “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.”

Shine Your Light!

Thoughts, reactions, or testimonies? Leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing from you!

takeiteasy

AN ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE…

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gratitude (1)

GRATITUDE (PART 2)

1 Thessalonians 5:18 – “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

Ephesians 5:20 – “Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ…”

Reflections: Some days, it’s easy to focus on what we lack, especially when we are going through a trial or are in a posture of waiting. We focus so heavily on that one thing that we don’t have that we forget to take comfort in the myriad blessings that we’ve already received. God has blessed each of us abundantly in so many ways, and remembering this…acknowledging His grace, mercy, love, and provision…can brighten even the darkest day.

Today, let’s make a point not to take God and His blessings for granted. Let’s look around and really SEE all that He has done. I bet that we won’t have to look far to see Him working and moving in our lives. And as we acknowledge His presence with gratitude, we make way for Him to move in a mighty way and shower us with new and miraculous blessings.

Be grateful!

Song: Smile by Jonathan McReynolds

Thoughts, reactions, or testimonies? Leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing from you!

Shine Bright! :)

gratitude

The Balance Challenge!

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Beach-Balance

BALANCE

Psalm 23:2-3a – “He makes me to lie down in green pastures; he leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul.”

Genesis 2:2-3 – “By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.  And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.”

Reflections: Life can get pretty hectic sometimes, and the myriad distractions of this world can keep us from properly caring for ourselves and the people around us. When we live each day moving from “to do” to “to do,” not taking a moment to rest and refresh, the stress of the day can wear on us, making us less productive, less efficient, and in many cases, less healthy (physically, emotionally, and spiritually). When we fail to take the time for self-care, our minds, bodies, and Spirits can suffer, along with our relationships with family, friends, colleagues, and most importantly, God.

The Bible speaks often about the importance of quiet, peace, and rest. Even God rested on the seventh day, and Mark shares that Jesus told the disciples to “Come away by yourselves to a lonely place and rest awhile” (Mark 6:31). It is in these quiet places, those spaces where we let go of distractions and welcome peace and stillness, that God is most likely to meet us and give us the rest and renewal that we so desperately need.

If you (like me) are guilty of neglecting your body and soul’s need for rest, join me today in The Balance Challenge! I challenge you to make a list of things that refresh and renew you—things that bring you joy, make you smile, or give you peace—and commit to engage in two things from that list EVERY DAY. You’ll be surprised how much more centered you feel and how better prepared you are to face the day ahead. You’ll also find that it slowly becomes easier to hear the Voice of God in the midst of all the chaos and noise that life can sometimes bring. Give it a try, and let me know how it goes! 🙂

“Do not let your to-do list (written or mental) become an idol directing your life.” ~Sarah Young, “Jesus Calling”

Also Read:

Luke 5:16 – “Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.”

Matthew 11:28-30 – “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My load is light.”

Shine Your Light!