Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Live Like David

We all know the story. Giant taunts army. No one is brave enough to fight giant. Young boy says he'll do it. He does. David and Goliath. A story we all know and love. However, David and Goliath didn’t make sense. Yes, David should have been crushed, giving Goliath the victory. But on paper, David should have never taken on the giant. When you look at the size difference, the age difference, and the vast difference their experience, David shouldn't have even went considered the fight. But he did.

The Lord who rescued me from the paw of the lion and the paw
of the bear will rescue me from the hand of this Philistine.
1 Samuel 17:37

David not only had faith that God would protect him, he also had confidence and boldness in God. He didn't fearfully or timidly go to Goliath. He went bravely knowing what he had to do and Who was with him.



We need to live like David. We need to trust that the Lord who saved us and who has rescued us time and time again will be there. What we are facing may not make any sense on paper. It might be seem so far fetched in our human mind, but the Lord's thoughts are not our thoughts.

"For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
and your ways are not My ways."
This is the Lord's declaration.
Isaiah 55:8

Let's be women who live like David. Who boldly and  bravely face our giants. Who fight with confidence in the Lord.


It's time for Share A Link Wednesday! Each Wednesday we invite you to leave a link to your latest blog post in the comments. We still desire to connect women of God with one another and encourage each other in Christ. So grab a cup of coffee or glass of sweet tea, sit back and visit a few blogs. Be encouraged and share your own stories.







Tuesday, September 17, 2019

The Bible and Your Everyday Life





Photo Courtesy of Priscilla Du Preez



"All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work."
~2 Timothy 3:16-17


What is usually the first thing to go when the busyness of everyday life invades? Typically, it is our time with the Lord. What a grievous mistake we make here. When we do this, we truly are shooting ourselves in the proverbial foot, depriving ourselves of the source of the strength and vision required for faithful, God-centered living.

How often do we as women feel downright weak in our marriages, our work, and in our mothering? When we feel spiritually, emotionally, and mentally sluggish, when we find ourselves going through moments where we feel like utter failures, when we begin to allow Satan and his lies to invade our thinking, we can know that we have relegated God to the back burner for far too long.

Friends, we are sucking the very lifeblood out of our everyday lives when we move Bible study and prayer to the very bottom of our to-do lists. We are taking the most important practice—that of meeting with God—that would make all the difference in the world for ourselves and our families and treating it as if it is not important. In reality, as the passage above illustrates, being in the Word is where our strength comes from for our lives and responsibilities . It follows then that we would be weakening our endurance and abilities in these areas when we are not in communion with God on a regular basis. Just as we would not go without physical food to energize and nourish our bodies, likewise we should not be going without spiritual food, the Word of God, to energize and nourish our
souls.

We are muddling our understanding of what are true, right priorities when we are not regularly taking in the wisdom of God’s Word and His perspective for life. We are depriving ourselves of the comfort, knowledge, insight, encouragement, strength, and help required in order to live this one life well and perform the good works that have been prepared beforehand for us to walk in. We are going through life without the instruction manual.

Too often we, in an effort to be nice and understanding, will tell fellow sisters-in-Christ
that we know how busy they are and how impossible it is to spend time in the Word in this season, giving them a free pass for ignoring God’s Word. That’s not a very nice thing to say, however, as it deprives that sister of what she actually needs. It likewise is simply not true to the Biblical text or to God’s priorities for His people. The Lord gave us the great gift of His Word precisely because He expects us to be in it and benefit from it, viewing it as our roadmap for life.

The problem is that we have entertained the mistaken idea that unless our quiet time situation is “perfect” (that we are up before our kids, have a hot cup of coffee nearby, are sitting in our favorite comfy chair with candle lit, music playing, journal and Bible in hand, and a free hour in which to study and pray), then it’s all for naught and there’s no point in
it. If our only option is to read for just five quick minutes before the baby wakes up, or if we only get to do our reading once the kids are all already awake around us, we believe all is lost. This mistaken idea is evidence of our placing more faith and power in the circumstances surrounding our Bible reading than in the actual Bible itself and the God behind it. Do we actually believe the Word to be alive and active or not? Do we really
believe it will not “return void” (Isaiah 55:11), or do we think God lied in this verse?

 Our answers to these questions (after we have searched our hearts in this area) will determine our attitude and our outlook when our desire for a quiet “quiet time” goes unmet. The power of God’s Word is not dependent upon how long we read it or if we have a hot cup of coffee and no children nearby. The power of God’s Word is in the very fact that it is God’s Word and that it “shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it” (Isaiah 55:11). I propose that the “perfect quiet time” is simply any time you open the Word of God—no matter what the extenuating circumstances. 

So, I ask you today, friend: what will you do to ensure that you have time in the Word today?






Monday, September 16, 2019

Promise, Fight, and Victory

By: Joanne Viola

“The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.” (2 Corinthians 10:4, NIV)


God has given us great and wonderful promises by which to live. I cannot help but wonder why there have been times I would expect them to come easily, without a fight.

Yes, God has given us promises. They are for us today; and He also tells us, we will engage in a fight to live in the fullness of all He has for our lives.

God promised Abram land – The Promised Land. God Himself says to Abram:

“To your descendants I give this land, from the rivers of Egypt to the great river, The Euphrates..”  (Genesis 15:18, NIV)

God promised the land, even telling Abram the boundaries. He was quite clear on what was being given to him and to his future generations.

God, in His great mercy, also continues to tell Abram what to expect within those boundaries:

“… the land of the Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, Hittites, Perizzites, Rephaites, Amorites, Canaanites, Girgashites and Jebusites.” (Genesis 15:19, NIV)

God tells Abram, the land is yours, but there will also be a fight to gain it as there are people living there who are your enemies.

God is mighty and with one swell breath, He could have wiped the land clear of those occupants. But He did not.

God knew the land was way too tall of an order for His people to obtain all at once. They needed to grow in number to have the strength and abilities, to not only continuing to conquer the land, but to maintain the land.

In a nutshell – they needed to develop. The same is true for us. God desires for us to grow in strength and depth of relationship with Him.

Several years ago, I experienced deep joy as I heard a loved one say, “I am a cancer survivor!”

The joy in being able to say this was obvious in her words, her tone, and her face. It had been a long, hard year. A battle. It did not come easily. But she knew the joy of the victory which God had brought to her.

God has given His promises so that we have all we need to fight and are able to obtain what He has promised.

Through the promises and the fight,
we come to know the thrill of victory with Him.

May we fight hard – each and every day!


Photo by Carolyn V on Unsplash
 


 
 

Sunday, September 15, 2019

God is Listening to What We Say About Him


Malachi 3: 13-18 The MessageGod says, “You have spoken hard, rude words to me. You ask, ‘When did we ever do that?’When you said, ‘It doesn’t pay to serve God. What do we ever get out of it? When we did what he said and went around with long faces, serious about God-of-the-Angel-Armies, what difference did it make? Those who take life into their own hands are the lucky ones. They break all the rules and get ahead anyway. They push God to the limit and get by with it.’”
 Then those whose lives honored God got together and talked it over. God saw what they were doing and listened in. A book was opened in God’s presence and minutes were taken of the meeting, with the names of the God-fearers written down, all the names of those who honored God’s name.
God-of-the-Angel-Armies said, “They’re mine, all mine. They’ll get special treatment when I go into action. I treat them with the same consideration and kindness that parents give the child who honors them. Once more you’ll see the difference it makes between being a person who does the right thing and one who doesn’t, between serving God and not serving him.”
Recently, while reading through the book of Malachi with She Reads Truth, I was deeply convicted as well as deeply encouraged as I read this passage from chapter three. In this passage we see two groups of people-the God accusers and the God honorers. The God accusers are upset at God for what they see as unfairness. Why isn't life better for the obedient than for the disobedient? Why do the disobedient get away with the way they live? I get it. I want to see the wicked punished and the righteous blessed. I get upset when those who love and serve God suffer and I get upset when I don't see God's justice against wrongdoers. Until I'm the one who does wrong-then I want God to be merciful and long-suffering! 
The God honorers talk about God when they get together. Obviously, God listens and hears the mumbling and complaining of the God accusers, because in this passage He's correcting them about it. But when the God honorers get together and talk about God with one another, God doesn't just listen, He takes notes! God writes down the names of the God honorers and makes them a promise. He tells them that when The Day comes when He makes wrong things right, when evil is judged and righteousness is rewarded, He will give the God honorers special treatment. He will call them His own and as a good and loving Father, He will show them His kindness and consideration. They will see clearly that serving God and living righteously has been worth it.
I want with all of my heart to be a God honorer. I don't want to fall into the snare of satan, who is an accuser by nature, and listen to his accusations against God. That's how sin came into this world. satan accused God to Adam and Eve of withholding something good from them. They listened to his accusations and believed his lies and ate his bait. Literally.
God is listening to what we say about Him. I tremble to think of Him having to correct me for speaking hard, rude words about Him as He did to the God accusers in the book of Malachi. But, I get excited to think of being on God's list of God honorers and of there being a book of remembrance of all of the God honoring things I've said about Him. My heart's desire is to be a God honorer and when I get to heaven I want to see that book that is filled with notes of the God honoring things I've said about Him. I pray it's a really, really thick one!



Friday, September 13, 2019

5 Love Letters from God



By: Sarah Geringer


Do you need a love letter from God? Scripture is full of them!

We all need a boost for our love tanks. Even the best relationships can't keep them full. Only God is able to always offer us love that truly sustains our hearts.


These five scriptures are God's love letters to you. Meditate on them slowly today, inserting your name in the blanks.

The Lord is compassionate and merciful,
    slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.
He will not constantly accuse ________,
    nor remain angry forever.
He does not punish ________ for many sins;
    he does not deal harshly with ________, as deserved.
For his unfailing love toward ______
    is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth.
He has removed ______'s sins as far from ______
    as the east is from the west.
The Lord is like a father to his children,
    tender and compassionate to those who fear him.
For he knows how weak _______ is;
    he remembers ________ is only dust.
_______'s days on earth are like grass;
    like wildflowers, ________ blooms and dies.
The wind blows, and ______ is gone—
    as though ________ had never been here.
But the love of the Lord remains forever
    with __________.
Psalm 103:8-17 NLT

Nothing can ever separate _______ from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,
 neither fears for today nor worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate _______ from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate ________ from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:38-39 NLT

But God is so rich in mercy, and he loved _______ so much, that even though _______ was dead because of sin, he gave ________ life when he raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that _______ has been saved!)
Ephesians 2:4-5 NLT

And may _______ have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is.
Ephesians 3:18 NLT

What marvelous love the Father has extended to ________! Just look at it—________ is called a child of God! That’s who _______ really is. 
1 John 3:1a MSG

I hope this meditation exercise has filled you up with God's love. As you continue to meditate on these beautiful verses, you'll know just how much God loves you!
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Have a wonderful weekend!

Blessings and God's peace to you,





Photo from Canva.com



Reflection questions:




1. Which verse above encouraged you the most?

2. Which other portions of Scripture help you feel loved?