Seeking Joy and Peace

In Christ, our joy and peace have nothing to do with our circumstances! Our hope, joy, and peace have everything to do with Jesus! He is our hope, He blesses us with His peace, and He supplies us with unending joy even in painful, difficult times.

 

What’s trying to steal your joy today? Is a painful circumstance or a challenging situation threatening to rob you of your joy and peace?

 

The God of hope wants to fill you with all joy and peace! He wants to fill you so completely with His joy and peace, there isn’t any room for worry and fear! He wants you overflowing with His goodness.

 

Pray and seek Him! His strength is sufficient and He is stronger, bigger, and more powerful than whatever you are facing. He can bring healing, restoration, reconciliation, and peace, and He can bring those things in an instant.

 

He may remove the situation, He may fix it, or He may teach you through it, but He will supply you with the strength and peace you need. Trust Him believe Him, and watch Him do great things!

 

Hope, peace, and joy

 

Lord, would You strengthen me to believe You and trust You in every way, in every circumstance. In the power of Your Holy Spirit, would You replace my fear and doubt with assurance and fill me with all joy, peace, and hope in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Finding Abundant, Vibrant Life in Christ

Overwhelmed, weary, exhausted, struggling…

This describes most of us as we deal with our busy, over-scheduled lives.  We are so accustomed to being busy and feeling overwhelmed, it just seems normal. But we are made  for so much more! We are created with purpose and, filled with the Holy Spirit, we are to be salt, light, and hope to a scared, lost world.

How do we do that if we are overwhelmed with the everyday demands of life? How do we live the abundant, vibrant lives Christ has for us if we are always exhausted?

You and I can do all things in Christ–all things!  That includes overcoming weariness.  In His power, we can slow down, enjoy life, and become fruitful, productive, joyful people all the time.

Our circumstances are irrelevant!  Our joy depends on Christ!

 

my-soul-finds-rest-in-god-psalm-625

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So How Do We Overcome Emotional Struggles and Overwhelmed Exhaustion?

 

1.  Rest

Our bodies need rest, our souls need rest, and our spirits need rest.

We know this, but it can be hard to do.  We have a long to-do list and many people counting on us.  We can’t just stop and rest, can we?  We must!

God, in His infinite wisdom, designed His creation to operate in cycles and the importance of rest cannot be ignored.  If we are constantly operating in our own strength, trying to accomplish more and more, never stopping, never resting, we become inefficient and unproductive–exactly what we are trying to avoid!

“Be still and know that I am God”…God knows you need rest.  He knows you need time with Him to be refilled, refreshed, and refueled.  Don’t miss out on what He has for you by trying to do it all right now.

God declared a full day of rest after every six days of work.  Don’t think you can out work or out perform God!  In that day of rest, He will refresh you from the previous six days, and equip you for the next six.

Take time to rest!  Claim your Sabbath rest.  Claim your daily quiet time and give God time to transform you in every way.

“Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from Him” (Psalm 62:5)

2. Prayer

Direct, open communication with God is the fastest, surest way to avoid emotional struggles, and the most powerful way to overcome them!

God already knows what you need.  Ask Him for help.  Seek His guidance and wisdom for decisions and trust Him for the days ahead.

Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere. (Ephesians 6:18)

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).

3.  God’s Word

Read it. Cherish it. Savor it. God’s Holy Words of love and instruction are meant for you. Even when it seems impossible to comprehend, focus on a verse, a word, and ask God to reveal Himself.

God’s Word is light. It gives us direction and shatters the darkness.

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” (Psalm 119:105)

God’s Word is necessary. Only by reading, absorbing, and meditating on His Word do we learn to be like Christ. Through His Word, we are made whole, complete, and equipped to fulfill our calling.

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

God’s Word is nourishment.

“But he answered, ‘It is written, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” (Matthew 4:4)

Through His Word, God will bring you comfort, healing, inspiration, direction, wisdom, guidance, freedom, and, beloved, He will bring you peace.

4. Fellowship

We are created for community.  In times of sadness, grief, anxiety–when we are struggling emotionally, we often withdraw.  We must all be transparent and real with one another, loving like Christ, unafraid to show our weakness, loving and kind when others need our compassion.

Don’t hide your emotions and struggles from others.  We need a small group of fellow believers and friends circled around us in those difficult times.  And we need to be part of that circle for them.

Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor.  For if either of them falls, the one will lift up his companion. But woe to the one who falls when there is not another to lift him up. (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10)

5. Praise

There is incredible power in our praise of the Lord. Our focus is taken off our troubles, and lifted to the Almighty. Choose to praise Him in the harshest of circumstances. He is faithful and He is our Rock and Refuge, and worthy to be praised!

 

Why, my soul, are you downcast?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God. (Psalm 42:11)

~*~

I want to find my purpose and fulfill it.  I want victory in every area of my life, and I want that for you too. Slow down, dear friend! Find rest in Christ and seek Him first. He will guide you and show you the way forward, but you must first let Him nourish your soul. Trust Him!

Prayer~

Lord, thank You for Your Holy Word. Deepen my desire to know You more, to hunger for Your Word and thirst for righteousness. Open my eyes and reveal deep, mysterious, and wondrous things through Your Word, and would You give me wisdom to understand, and courage to obey. Help me to slow down and not view every moment as a crisis, but to surrender to You and follow Your lead as You guide me. Give me a joyful heart and strengthen me to fulfill my purpose in Jesus’ name. Amen!

 

What would you add to this list? How do you overcome life’s struggles and find peace when life is busy and hard? I would love to hear from you, and I pray you are refreshed and renewed in the love and peace of Jesus!

 

Love,

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This post is linked with some amazing, encouraging linkups including: Titus 2 Tuesday at Cornerstone Confessions. Find the complete list HERE

Perfect, Extreme, Unconditional Love

The Love of the Lord

You, my sweet friend, are dearly loved. Not as the world loves with conditions and expectations. No, you are loved with a perfect, extreme, and unconditional love that cannot be completely understood or explained with human wisdom.

You were loved before you were created. You were loved by a righteous, perfect God before you were His. You were loved by your Savior before you accepted or even knew Him. In Christ, you are forgiven, righteous, redeemed. You are a child of God, and you are loved.

You can’t make God love you more, and there’s nothing you can do to make Him love you less. With no limits, you are loved!

You are loved on your best days and you are loved on your worst. You are loved when you are faithful and loved when you stray. Obedient or disobedient, honest or deceitful, loving or mean…you are simply loved.

It’s All About God

But we don’t earn God’s love. God is love. It is His nature, His character. It is who He is. And you, His child, are loved–not because of anything you do, not because of who you are, but simply because of who God is and what Christ has already done!

What Should We Do?

How should we respond to God’s love? With love!

As you begin to grasp just how deeply loved and cherished you are, your heart begins to change. The love of God makes us want to love God and love others with the same love He has given us. Our love for God compels us to live righteously, to live a life pleasing and acceptable to Him–and that means loving people the way He loves us!

No matter what you are facing today, no matter what the enemy is trying to destroy, remember how loved you are.

Ask God to reveal His love for you in a fresh, new way today, to breathe life into areas of discouragement and despair. Seek Him today with your whole heart and let His love for you transform you into the image of His love!

~*~

Prayer:

Father, help me remember that I am Yours and I am loved. No matter what difficult situation or trial I am facing, help me live a life pleasing to You full of mercy, love and forgiveness. You are my strength and my refuge; in You, I am safe and I am loved. Help me begin to feel the depth and completeness of Your love for me, and help me then share that love with others. Help me look beyond myself and bring Your light and love to someone in need today. I know I am unworthy and undeserving, yet You love me. Thank You for loving me. Thank You for Jesus. In His name I pray, Amen!

The Love of Jesus

Overwhelmed by God

Overwhelmed by God

Dear one, are you weary and overcome with emotion in your current situation? You are not alone!

We will all be overwhelmed; it’s inevitable. We will have seasons of busyness, times of trouble, and days of doubt. Yet, in God’s grace and mercy, He gives us a choice, an important choice that affects everything else in our life.

We can choose what will overwhelm us…the world or our Lord!

We can be overwhelmed by the world.

This leads to stress, worry, fear, anxiety, busyness, health problems, chaos and death–every negative, painful emotion we can have.

OR

We can be overwhelmed by God!

This leads us to peace, joy, and everlasting strength; calm, serenity, and tranquility–every good and perfect gift that our Father offers.

Let’s choose our loving Father!

~*~

Are you overwhelmed? Are your current circumstances more than you can handle on your own? Do you just feel weary and worn down?

There is comfort and peace in Christ! He is bigger than the problem and more powerful than the circumstance. He is with you and wants to give you rest.

Find peace in Him and trust His timing. Let Him replace your weariness with strength, your doubts with awe of Him, your fear with faith, and your turmoil with His perfect peace~be overwhelmed by Him!

Overwhelmed by God

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Prayer at HIS feet

Lord, as I am overwhelmed and overcome…let me be overwhelmed and overcome only by You! Help me keep the problems of this world, and my temporary struggles in perspective. Teach me to see everything through Your eyes and from Your eternal vantage point. Strengthen me to remember You are my strength, my protector, my very present help in times of trouble.

~*~

You are loved, my friend, and you are never alone. I pray you are abundantly blessed and encouraged today.

If this post has blessed you, please share it and encourage someone else!

Blessings,

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Move From Worry To a Place of Expectation

A Place of Expectation

Are you in a difficult situation? Are worry, fear and doubt preoccupying your mind and creating turmoil in your heart?

God is offering you peace in this moment.

Wait on God, expect Him to act, and trust Him for His answer. In His timing, In His way, He will come through for you. It may be in an unexpected way, but it will most assuredly be the best way! God’s answer will be the path that brings Him glory, and also works out for your best!

 

[tweetthis]Trusting God replaces worry with peace #expectmiracles #placeofexpectation[/tweetthis]

How do you move from fear to peace, worry to expectation?

  • Choose to believe and trust God, and decide right now that you accept His Word as truth. Intentionally choose to believe Him regardless of your attitude or emotions. When doubts come–and they always do–remember, He is faithful!
  • Make a list of at least 5 Bible verses that relate to your current situation. Write them out on note cards or put them in your phone. When doubt and fear begin to rise, read them, speak them, pray them over and over and over until the peace of God floods your mind and begins to transform your thoughts.
  • Replace the worry-filled question, “What’s going to happen?” with the peace-filled, “What’s God going to do?”

 

You can overcome worry! You can stop fretting and learn to enjoy your place of expectation. Praise God while you wait, and look forward to His amazing, glory-filled answer! Waiting is hard, but keep looking to Your Father in heaven for His plan and remember His promises–you will not only get through this time, you will be victorious!

[tweetthis]Overcome doubt &fear-Read, speak, pray God’s Word until His peace floods your mind & transforms you[/tweetthis]

~*~

Trust God and release your worry! Pray the following prayer and begin to enjoy your current place of expectation. Whatever you’re hoping for…God has something even better!

***

Father in heaven, I trust You. You know my heart, my thoughts, and my need, and I know You already have the perfect answer. I will praise You while I wait for Your direction. I will follow You even if I can’t see the next step. I will trust You in all things, at all times, no matter what. I am excited to see what You are going to do in me and through me and I will not fear. I pray in the name of Your Son, Jesus. Amen!

Happy Holidays or Merry Christmas?

Happy Holidays…

Are you celebrating this holiday season? Do you have special traditions in place to gather with family and celebrate something special? I hope you do! I hope you can reconnect with family and friends you haven’t seen in a while, laugh, celebrate, and enjoy the festivities of this season as well as remember those who are gone.

The holiday season comes once a year and is meant to be a time of joy. It has become a season of trees, lights, gifts and laughter, but every attempt has been made to commercialize, sanitize and equalize it to generic, all-inclusive terms that don’t offend anyone or leave anyone out.

I used to be bothered by the removal of the word “Christmas” because this Holy Day has become a secular holiday.

I wasn’t just bothered for myself. Every “Holy Day” being left out and stuffed under the “Happy Holidays” umbrella was being ignored and being called offensive to someone. I’ve never been bothered by someone else’s celebration or tradition. I just want the freedom and ability to rejoice in my own- the Savior’s birth!

This year, though, is different. Happy Holidays doesn’t bother me. It is simply a worldly expression for worldly traditions. There’s nothing wrong with that except that there is so much more! We’re not saved by a holiday or redeemed by tradition. Life, salvation and joy come from Jesus.

[tweetthis]I am not saved by a holiday or redeemed by tradition. My salvation and my joy come from Jesus! [/tweetthis]

As many are gathering around their Holiday Trees, singing Holiday songs and buying Holiday gifts, I’m reminded of some amazing, life-changing, world-changing things…and I can rejoice!

~The shepherds weren’t concerned with decorations or tradition. They simply dropped everything and found their Savior.

~Joseph wasn’t scurrying around buying presents or hanging lights. He was proudly enjoying the growth of his family because of his Savior.

~Mary wasn’t panicked over the amount of cookies she had to bake or cleaning her house for guests. She simply held and loved her baby Son, her Savior.

~The angels weren’t arguing over the politically correct way to proclaim the Good News to all. They simply lit up the night sky and sang about His goodness.

~Baby Jesus wasn’t afraid. He was becoming one of us so He could save us! 

~*~

That’s Christmas! The beautiful, glorious reminder of a perfect God joining His broken creation to offer a path back to glory.

So, what are you celebrating this time of year? Is it a tradition with trees, lights and music? Happy Holidays! Whatever your tradition, I hope you have a wonderful time with family and enjoy this season of festivities! But please know there is more.

Infinitely, eternally more important, I pray you know the salvation, forgiveness, acceptance and love of the Savior who was born long ago. He left heaven to join His creation and show us the way home.

The Christ, the Savior, the Messiah, has come!

Merry-Christmas

~*~

I have a Christmas tree. There is a wreath on my door and lights around my house. If you wish me a “Happy Holiday” I won’t be offended. I will warmly smile and accept your well wishes for a happy holiday time with a grateful heart.

But please don’t be offended when I respond by wishing you a Happy Holiday and a Merry Christmas.  I enjoy the festivities and celebration, but I rejoice at the birth of my Savior and I pray you know Him too!

~*~

Lord, as we gather and celebrate this time of year with those we love, remind us of the magnitude of Your sacrifice. Help us focus on Your gifts of love, grace, peace and mercy. As so many battle over words and ideas, teach Your followers to love Your Word, Your truth, and to obey Your command to love others. Help us not be offended or drawn into meaningless arguments over meaningless things. Focus our thoughts on eternal things and may we shine Your love onto a hurting, dying world. Thank You Jesus for coming to earth. Thank You Jesus for saving us. May those who don’t yet know You find You this Christmas season. We pray in Your name, Amen!

Dwell in His Shelter

Dwell in His Shelter

Whatever you are facing, whatever this day may hold, remember Jesus has already overcome the world. In God, you are sheltered, protected, and you have a safe refuge in Him. Rely on His strength, rest in His shadow, and He will guide you through.

Dwell in His Shelter~*~

Lord, You are my refuge, my fortress, and I trust Your Word. You are help when I am in need, You are peace when I am anxious, and You are strength when I am weak. As I face the day ahead, turn my thoughts to You and guide me to do Your will. Thank You for Your help and protection as I dwell in Your shelter and rest in Your shadow. Whatever this day holds, I know You are with me. In the name of Jesus, Amen.

In His Word: Psalm 91

Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High
    will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress,
    my God, in whom I trust.” (Psalm 91:1-2)

For devotions and encouragement, visit us online at www.faithtosoar.com 

Like our facebook page at His feet and Faith to Soar

Find Your Purpose

Find your purpose.

You, beloved, are so special! Your Father in heaven has created you, chosen you, and gifted you for a very special purpose.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11)

He knows the perfect plans He has for your life. Your Father wants to bless you, strengthen you, and He wants to use you for His Kingdom.

Through every moment, every struggle, every joy, He is equipping you. He is always with you–leading you, guiding you, and preparing you to fulfill your purpose in Him.

Oh what indescribable joy when we are living in His will! Invite His presence into your situation. Welcome His power into your life. Repent of all sin and run wholeheartedly for the God who loves you enough to die for you.

What is He preparing you to do? What is He asking of you? What does He want to accomplish in You?

Beloved, spend time with Him today and let Him reveal His plan for you. Let Him work in you today. If you follow Him, obey Him, and trust Him, He will reveal every step in His perfect timing. He will amaze you with wonders you can’t even imagine. Let Him overwhelm you!

Follow Him, obey Him, trust Him and He will reveal every step in His perfect timing…let Him amaze you!

I can’t tell you it will be easy, but I can promise you it will be worth it! Don’t trust me though–trust Him! Go to the Source of life and the Author and Perfecter of your faith, let Him speak to you and reveal wondrous things!

1cor29

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Now may the God of peace—who brought up from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great Shepherd, of the sheep, and ratified an eternal covenant with his blood—may He equip you with all you need for doing his will. May he produce in you, through the power of Jesus Christ, every good thing that is pleasing to him. All glory to him forever and ever! Amen. (Hebrews 13:20-21)

Abundant blessings,

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This post is linked with some fabulously uplifting blogs. I hope you will go visit and be encouraged: Motivation Monday, A Life in BalanceInspire Me Monday, Just Another MomA Proverbs 31 WifeMonday Musings, What Joy is MineCornerstone Confessions, Titus 2 Tuesday;

You Are Loved

You are loved.

Do you know that?  I mean, do you really, truly, deep down, when you’re all alone and life is hard…do you know you are loved?

You are!  And, dear one, you are never truly alone.  El Shaddai, the All-Sufficient God is with you!  He is holding you, protecting you, and guiding you, even when you can’t feel His presence.

You are never left to face the trials and struggles of this life without help.  El Sali, God of my strength is with you.  You have the power of the living God in you and He never leaves you!

You are loved by Immanuel, God with us…God with you!

You are cherished.  You are chosen.  You are part of a “royal priesthood”.  You are loved.

~*~

Whatever you are facing in life, whatever your struggle, never forget you are not alone and you are not forgotten.  You are highly regarded in heaven and you are loved by the Creator of the universe.  He has a plan for you and He will guide your steps.  Follow Him, trust Him, and rest in Him~ He will never leave you and He will never forsake you!

Be Still, Psalm 46:10

Father, thank You for Your unending, perfect love.  Thank You for Your Son Jesus. Thank You that in the darkest, hardest, most difficult times, You are with me. Strengthen me to slow down, to be still and know You are God, and to know the depth of Your love for me.  And teach me to love others in the same way.  In the name of Jesus, Amen!

~***~

I pray you are filled to overflowing with God’s love and grace!

Love and Blessings,

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A Time to Persevere

love of God

A Time to Persevere

Do you feel unimportant? Are you wondering if what you’re doing even matters? Are you questioning, “Is it worth it?”

First, I would ask, “Did God call you to it?”

If He did, then I can promise you, without hesitation or doubt, that yes, it is important, special, and definitely worth it.

Don’t give up, don’t give in, and don’t quit. You may not see the value right now, you may not see the benefit for some time, but God sees a much bigger picture, the whole picture from beginning to end, and He will use the actions of His people to change the world~one at a time or thousands is up to Him.

You can make a difference in someone’s life, right now, today. Whatever God is calling you to do…do it! And do it with love, mercy, integrity, and joy.

Your obedience to God is all He requires. He will take care of the rest according to His perfect will.

Don’t quit…persevere and leave the results to Him.

~*~

Father, I ask for discernment to hear from You clearly, wisdom to understand, and strength to obey immediately. Whatever You call me to do, may I be delighted to do Your will. Help me produce fruit that shares Your love to those around me. Use me for Your will in Jesus’ name, Amen!

love of God

Love and Blessings in our Lord Jesus,

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