Saturday, November 21, 2015


With the upcoming holiday, I've been reflecting on the word Thanksgiving. According to the Webster's dictionary, "Thanksgiving - a legal holiday celebrated in the U.S. for people to be thankful for what they have." I think it's much more than that, when we recognize who provided all those things in the first place.

Thanksgiving isn't something we should celebrate once a year on the fourth Thursday of November, but on a daily basis we should live a life of gratitude to the Creator of the world, just for being who He is. "Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever." Psalm 118:1 (NIV)

So, how do we live a life of Thanksgiving in a world that seems so dark & gloomy, a world where mass shootings and terrorist attacks become more common every day. A world that is so focused on how this situation affects me, instead of looking at the bigger picture and asking what can I do for others, that will bring glory to God? The answer is we can't, not on our own at least, but through the power of Jesus Christ.

"Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians‬ ‭5:18 (NIV)

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians‬ ‭4:6-7‬ ‭(NIV‬‬)

In other words, "turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full in His wonderful face. The things if earth will grow strangle dim, in the light of His glory & grace." We're not promised that when we look to Jesus, everything will be rainbows & butterflies. I'm not saying that when we look to Jesus that all the bad stuff in the world goes away. We live in a fallen world. But when we turn to Jesus, He will give us a peace that passes all understanding.

Sometimes in life we walk through valleys, and other times we get to hang out on a mountain top. I'm thankful for my valleys, because I got to witness first hand that God will never leave me or forsake me. Through the hard times, and my lowest points, I got to learn how to lean on Jesus. "But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." Isaiah 40:31

So, thank You Lord for being who You are. You are good, and your love never fails. Thank you for being strong when I'm weak. Thank you for the life you have given me! Thank you for being faithful to keep Your promises. Thank You for loving me at my worst, and for sending Your Son Jesus, to prove on the cross how much You love me. Today, I won't ask for anything, I just want to say thank you!

Friday, November 6, 2015

Please wait...

It has been said that God answers prayer in three different ways; yes, no, and wait. The first two are a little easier for me to hear, but if I’m being honest, hearing the word wait, not so easy. We live in a world where everything moves so fast, we’re so wrapped up in ourselves, that when we have to wait on someone or something it becomes an inconvenience. Dr. Charles Stanley said it perfectly in his study The Grace to Wait, 

“Waiting on somebody or anything implies that we’re not in control.” Oh boy, how we hate to be out of control. I’m put on hold for fifteen minutes with the credit card company. I’m delayed by road construction, and now I have to sit in traffic. I have to pause the movie I’m trying to watch because my husband wants to get a snack and doesn’t want to miss anything. I’m held up at the doctor’s office because, well I don’t know why, visits to the doctor just always take forever. None of us like to wait and that’s normal, but God…

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

Did you know the original Hebrew root of be still doesn't mean "Be quiet"? It actually means "let go”. We can worry about the details and wear ourselves out emotionally, or we can learn to let go of our plans and give them to God.

I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.” Psalm 27:13-14.

When God asks us to wait, it’s for a good reason. Only He can see the full picture, and His timing is perfect! He is never late. When we put our trust in the Lord, He gives us the strength we need to wait. I leave you with a few verses that have encouraged me. My prayer is that they will give you strength and peace as well.

Be still and know that I am God.
Psalm 46:10

"My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."
Psalm 73:26
Truly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from Him.  Truly He is my rock and my salvation; He is my fortress, I will never be shaken.
Psalm 62:1-2

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes. Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil. For those who are evil will be destroyed, but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.
Psalm 37:7-9

You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in your word.
Psalm 119:114

He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
Isaiah 40:29-31