A Mission To Seek Him

Friday, April 27, 2012

Today's post comes from Lori at My Evident Faith

The bright blue sky was clear, allowing the sun one of its rare occurrences lately. It was a beautiful day, and the birds were singing and the daffodils blooming. Yet I still walked with my head down, my breath labored, and my mind dark. I felt alone, and I felt the weight of the world on my shoulders. Bills were piling up because I was ignoring them, my house wasn’t cleaned, and the only calm place I had was my crazy busy office. I hadn’t had a chance to visit friends or pray with anyone, outside of my normal church service. I was definitely feeling sad and uncertain. Where was God? Why was I feeling lonely and sad?

God says, “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” (Jer 29:13, NIV)

This verse tells us that when we make God our focus, we will find Him. He is always there for us, always ready to embrace us.  When we make finding Him our purpose, we will finally find Him. Happily, knowing that we need Him is enough; He will push open the door to our hearts and fill us with His love.

Through Jeremiah God tells us to seek Him – and this means we must continue to seek him. It is our mission.

In 1 Thessalonians 5:17 we are told to “pray continually”.

This goes hand-in-hand with seeking God with all your heart. And again, it refers to our mission in life.
“Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take” (Prv 3:6 NIV)

Do you feel God’s love in your life? Do worldly worries sometimes overwhelm your conscious desire to spend time with God?

That happens to me so often that I have lamented about it several times in my blog. I have also heard other people express this. But I know those people, and I know their greatest desire is a closer walk with God. So why is it that we lose focus on our mission and let our heart’s desire go by the wayside?

Well, it’s a catch-22…

It is a situation that can’t be avoided even through logic… ie, imperfect humans love God & desire to seek Him, yet because we are imperfectly human, we allow the minutiae of life to carry us away from our mission.

But we are told, “let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles.”

This encouragement is from Hebrews 12:2 (NIV) And wow, don’t we have so many things that hinder us in our walk and life? Sins that so easily entangle us?  You see? God knows exactly what pulls us from Him. He is fully aware of the fact that we are imperfect but yet He continues to love us!

The only aid to our imperfection is to continue, daily, to seek Him. Remembering our mission to do His will, we sometimes need to approach our mission like, well, a MISSION… No, He won’t require anything cloak and dagger – our only weapon will be our bible. We need to set an appointed time to read it daily. Then we will be armed with the word, His word, and we will be ready for battle. And because we truly are soldiers on a mission, we must remember that we need to check in and be in constant contact with God, only we won’t use a walkie-talkie, but prayer… prayer alone with Him each day, and prayer with friends and loved ones. You are not alone, and if you can’t reach out to the people in your daily life, remember this virtual world online where you can find friends who love Jesus like you do, and who will be happy to pray with you.

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart” (Hebrews 12:1-3)

Let's Pray
I pray that you seek God in your life in all that you do. I pray that you create a schedule for your prayer so that you can find His peace. He wants you to be at peace, He wants you to feel joy. He created us to be holy, so that we can be with Him, and I pray that you and I both are closer to Him for the time we have spent here together right now.
In Jesus' Name,

Just Ask

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Today's post comes from Starla at Keepin It Real
23 In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. 24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete. John 16:23,24  NIV

I teach my girls not to be afraid to ask for anything.  Negotiate.  I tell them that doesn't mean that they will always get what they want, "The worst thing that can happen is you will be turned down or told no."  I myself was raised by the creed,  A Closed Mouth Don't Get Fed and in my 34 years of life, I have found that to be very, very true.  Now I raise my girls to apply this concept to their every day circumstances.  Whether it be asking the teacher for help with something that they don't understand, asking me if they can stay the night with a friend (a very brave thing for them to do because they go through a serious interrogation)asking permission to play their favorite computer game, etc...... you get my drift.  

My 11 year old daughter Dayna even went so far as to request a round table discussion to negotiate terms for a computer game that they wanted to play but had recently been grounded from because they were neglecting their chores.  My husband and I were so impressed by the way she went about this request that we agreed to give it a try.  You see, this is something that Dayna really wanted to do and she figured out a way to ask with a resolution.  I mean she had a written plan for their requirements and everything. There have been times when we have given them things w/o them asking but sometimes, I wait for them to ask even though I already know what they want.  God is the same way with us.  He knows what we want and He is ready to give it to us but if we don't ask, sometimes we don't receive.

Case in point.  Did you know that some hotels offer additional amenities that they don't necessarily advertise such as bathrobes, slippers, extended check out and things of that nature?  Just because you don't see it in your room does not necessarily mean that it's not available.  They only give them to the people that ask for them.  There are so many deals and opportunities that we miss out on simply because we don't ask for them.  I have negotiated lower rent, scholarships (basically free versus $100) for summer programs at our local college, daycare expenses for more than 1 child ($100 per week instead of $140 per week) and the list goes on and on.  I'm so glad my girls are no longer in daycare, that's for sure but I managed to save $160 per month by negotiating a.k.a. (asking).

In James 4:2  scripture says that you do not have because you do not ask (see full scripture below).   What does this really mean?  I will tell you what I believe it does not mean.  It does not mean that you will receive everything that you ask for.  James 4:3 goes on to say  When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures. Ever done that before?  I know I have.  For the most part, I ask for what I want and I ask God if it be His will, In Jesus name.  I always ask in Jesus' name.  God knows me better than I know myself so I ask Him to open any doors that need to be opened and close doors that need to be closed regarding a specific situation.  You see, every day is an opportunity to be blessed by God but sometimes we miss out on those blessings simply because we do not ask to be blessed.  We may not know specifically what it is but we should still ask.  That's what I recently told my 16 year old daughter the other day.  Part of my daily morning prayer includes asking God to bless me.  Sometimes I forget and I may not always know how He blessed me, but I know that I should always ask.  

I have asked friends and family if they ever pray for themselves and more than half of them said no.  Why not?  They say they never think about themselves.  That is when I quote the scripture as best I can.  Enough to explain to them that God expects you to ask.  

Do you just ask?  Why or why not?


2 You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God.

3 When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.

23 In that day you will no longer ask me anything. Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.  24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.

Where can I go, without Jesus by my side

Friday, April 20, 2012

Today's post comes from Anita at Scattering the Stones
'We put our hope in the Lord.
He is our help and our shield.
In him our hearts rejoice,
for we trust in his holy name.
Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord,
for our hope is in you alone.'

Psalm 33:20-22 NLT

As I spent time with God, praying about what He would like me to share with you today. I felt led to write this psalm. I hope it blesses you.

Psalm: A journey from darkness into light

As I walk the path before me, seemingly stony, dry, with potholes at every turn,
I search the bare ground before me, stumbling, falling, into every pit.
A clash of darkness and baking sunlight clawing at my tired soul, the wind lashing at my feet

Tears tumbling from my eyes, pools of water sting my cheeks, reminding me of a time long ago.
I stand at the crossroads not knowing where to turn,
the longer I walk, the path never ending, where shall I go?
Strength fast disappearing, my body shattered, my mind weak...
My back breaking, from this heavy load.

My heart surrounded by barbed wire for protection,
Alone, so alone, sinking further and further; my focus pulled into the slimy pit.
If only I could rest, if only I could have a drink ...Is there a lake before me? Or is it a mirage?

I fall down, cradling my heart; darkness overwhelming, choking me, reminding me of my past.
Chains wrapped around me so tightly slashing at my flesh.

With all that I have left I cry, 'why have you abandoned me?'

The heavens shudder as I hear the mighty voice of my creator; speak honeycomb words that are sweet to my soul.
At the sound of His voice the darkness that once enveloped me, suddenly disappears.
At the sight of His majesty the stones roll away.
At His presence the shadow of the empty cross, shelters me from the storms and fiery arrows.

He whispers 'Precious daughter I AM here,'
'Don't be afraid, for I have redeemed you'.
The power of His words stops the cruel words of poison that had been killing me slowly.
As the arms of mercy catch me, He strengthens me, as He rescues my crushed spirit.

Peace like I have never known surrounds me as I sit at the throne of grace.
My raw face cupped by the hands of my Saviour, holding me close, so tenderly.
My tears of pain kissed away, by love.

In my desperation He heard my cry, as I hear, 'I know, for I was there.'
Words of Truth and inextinguishable light, filters through every part of me.
The meaning of life captured in what He has done for me.

I hear the music of angels and all of creation singing His praises.
The scales fall away from my eyes.
My life - a well watered garden, an ever flowing steam.
My heart leaps with Joy, woken from the depths of sorrow, a rainbow of Hope touches my soul.

I see my name glistening before me, written in the book of life.
Love casting aside the chains and prison doors, lies banished from my side.
Fear broken by one look into His eyes.
My heart healed by His glorious presence; forever changed a new creation.
Loved. Cherished. Forgiven. His.

Anita x

Don't Let Your Obstacles Become Giants

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Today's post comes from Kassie at Guiding Light From His Word
“Earth, shake with fear before the LORD,
before the God of Jacob.
He turned a rock into a pool of water, a hard rock into a spring.”
(Ps 114:7-8)

This week, if you come up against obstacles that try to become giants in front of you-- remember, it is "the almighty God”  alone that makes the earth tremble. As long as we are steady in Him, then the obstacle remains simply that-- an obstacle, and God Himself gives us the strength to handle them, (or) to go through them, to withstand them, and to get past them.

If you start to fret about, “But, how…” remind yourself, and take heart, that the same God who provided water from a rock to care for His people, still does amazing things now. God has not changed. His Word says, "The Lord says, 'This is my agreement with these people: My Spirit and my words that I give you will never leave you or your children or your grandchildren, now and forever.'" (Isa. 59:21)

Jesus, who came to earth as God in human form, said, "Earth and sky will be destroyed, but the words I have said will never be destroyed." (Mark 13:31)

Hold to the promise that  "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever." (Heb. 13:7)  My friend, whatever "need" you are facing right now, know that you too, (just like the people of Israel) could be standing right in front of a blessing, without you even realizing it.  The source you need maybe right in plain sight, it just might have a different exterior than you are expecting. Don’t limit God from the impossible He can perform in your life.  He can provide in many different ways, and in some ways you would never have expected. Nothing is impossible with God when He is about to "pour out water from a rock" when one of His children are in desperate need of supply.  Just remember the Israelites went 3 days before they saw God's mighty hand. He was waiting for them to quite complaining about the "lack of" and to "ask Him."

Whatever "obstacle" you face this week-- let it remain just that-- an obstacle. Stand in faith that you serve a faithful God. Don't let whatever it is become a giant. Know that mountains are merely the size of an ant hill to the one who created the heavens and earth. He is more than able, and we are more than conquerors in Him.

My friend, God will make a way for you-- because FAITHFUL is the one who calls you.

Blessing to you today and this week.

Praying in Faith:
"Father God, thank You for being our God. Lord, I still believe You are a God of wonder, and that You have not changed. I still believe that You are a God who will do a mighty work for those who wait on You and trust You. Lord, I praise You as my God. Lord, not only are You my God-- but You are the God of this reader, and I pray You will open thier eyes to see You in an amazing way.  Lord, I ask You to strengthen them in their spirit. Lord, I ask You to help them to stand firm in their resolve to follow You. 
~In Christ Jesus name, Amen~

You are beautiful

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

This week's post comes from Salina at State of the Heart
Luke 16:15 "You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of men, but God knows your hearts. What is highly valued among men is detestable in God’s sight." (NIV)

We all like looking at pretty things; it’s hard to pass by a row of beautiful flowers without stopping to admire them, there’s nothing like seeing the look a groom gives his blushing bride, and sometimes that actor or actress on television or in a magazine draws our eyes for a second glance, but when it comes to true beauty where do we draw the line? Most of us probably struggle with self-worth, but whether the problem stems from worrying about our appearance, weight, or just overall negative thoughts we have about ourselves, it all combines to form an affliction that affects some women as badly as if they had a life threatening disease.

It’s true that the world has a preconceived notion of what it means to be beautiful, but as women when we believe we’re unable to live up to that notion, for some reason we feel like we're a failure. When we get to this point it's easy to allow someone else to tell us how we should look or how we’re supposed to feel. Before long, we start to believe the lies told about us, even if they come from our own subconscious. Listen to what Sharon Jaynes says in her book I’m Not Good Enough (& other lies women tell themselves) "The way you think about yourself will eventually become the way you see yourself, whether it’s true or false. If you tell yourself negative, distorted statements about yourself, you will act in negative, destructive ways."

I can guess what’s going through your mind right now. You’re sitting there thinking of sentences that start with "what if." What if I was prettier, funnier, slimmer, smarter, shorter, taller, or richer; this list could go on and on, but beloved God never intended for you to be perfect. In Luke 16:15 Jesus Himself said to us "You are the ones who justify yourselves in the eyes of men, but God knows your hearts. What is highly valued among men is detestable in God’s sight." (NIV). When we choose to believe that beauty is only seen on the outside, we need to realize that these thoughts are nothing but hideous, ugly, revolting, and despicable in the eyes of God. He loves you and He wants you to give yourself a break. You are beautiful, you are smart, and you are strong.

You can be anything you want to be, but please don’t look at yourself through the eyes of men. God says He knows your heart, and you can believe He knows your value too. Sweetheart, hold your head high and put your trust in His truth. Learn to believe you’re beautiful just the way you are.

Please pray with me:
There are so many women out there who believe they fail to live up to what the world sets as a standard for being beautiful. My heart simply aches for them and I wish I could let them know otherwise.  Lord, I pray that You use me to help them look to You, their Maker and Designer, to remove these negative thoughts. Help them discover their true beauty and begin to love themselves as You love them. Encircle them in Your arms and allow them feel the comfort that only comes from You. 
In Your holy and precious name, Amen

I’m Not Good Enough..and Other Lies Women Tell Themselves – Sharon Jaynes pg 58-59 Harvest House Publishers Eugene, Oregon. 2009

I Give You Glory!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

This week's post comes from Dawn at The Most Perfect Gift

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.  We do this by keeping our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects our faith. Because of the joy awaiting him, he endured the cross, disregarding its shame. Now he is seated in the place of honor beside God’s throne.” Hebrews 12:1-2

When I read this scripture, I can easily vision myself with other Christians running into the wind with the look of perseverance on our faces. We are running and stripping away at our clothes [sin]. Pieces fall to the ground and we keep on running our eyes fixed on something straight ahead.

We are running to the cross that is in the near distance. The cross is empty. Yet just beyond it we can see Jesus sitting at the right hand of God in the Lord’s throne room. All the while Christians that came before us are sitting up in the clouds cheering us on. “Go Dawn! Go! You can do it! Just keep your eyes on Jesus! He loves you and is waiting for you at the end of the race! Remember what He endured for you on the cross?! You can do it!”

I can remember being a little girl and hearing the story of Jesus’ resurrection. All I really remember is there was a tomb, Jesus was there and a huge boulder. How did He get out of the tomb with a big boulder in the way? I’m not even sure if I remember Him being nailed to the cross or maybe I chose not to remember because it all seemed so gruesome to me. It saddens me that as a little girl I never understood the story. Somehow I missed it.

Thank you God for opening my eyes and giving me the understanding of what You did for me, for all of us who believe! Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” John 11:25-26

There is so much love at the cross. God gave us [sinners] His only Son so we could have eternal life. God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our sin, so that we could be made right with God through Christ.” 2 Corinthians 5:21

I have no words that are sufficient. Why don’t you join me for the next few moments with our hands raised to Heaven and worship Him!

Oh, how beautiful
Are you Lord
It’s Your words, it’s Your love
Oh, how glorious are you Lord
It’s Your power, it was Your cross
That saved me and rescued me
Just a moment there set me free
I give You glory glory!
With a crown of thorns You became a king forever!