Taking Risks

We only grow by taking risks, and the most difficult risk of all is to be honest with ourselves and with others.’ — Rick Warren

Many of us are afraid to take risks. Whether it is riding a rollercoaster, speaking out on an issue, or simply sharing your heart with another, risks force us to be decision makers. They make us vulnerable. But they also make life exciting and new.

When we wisely put God in control of any risks we take, the outcomes we experience are amazing. Don’t be afraid to step out in faith, even if the risk is intimidating. Evaluate it, pray about it. Let God lead you.

Some risks are foolish. But if something is of value, if it is worthy, then the risk may be worth taking. And trusting God is never a risk, ever.

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Today…Who Does It Belong To?

It’s not mine. No, and it’s not yours. It is merely an extension of time offered to us by God. It’s ours only in the sense that we make our own minds up as to what we do with this day, today. And that is only because when God gives us a gift, He also gives us free will to decide what we will do with it.

I think we all struggle, every single day, with the things we will fill this day, today, up with. Will we spend it holed up at home, watching TV or movies, and vegging out? Will we clean our house, yard, garage, car, totally, completely, and only? What about a little bit of cleaning, some yard work, maybe some shopping? Will we go to work, put in our time, just to go home and crash?

None of these actions are negative in and of themselves. We do sometimes need a ‘veggie’ day. Some days, we need to take advantage of our time to set things to right in our homes. And when we work, we sometimes do feel completely exhausted at the end of the day, and require rest.

But what about time with God and His son, Jesus? What about other people and their needs? Are we only focusing on ourselves, today?

The answer is, no matter what you choose to do with your day, today, you can still decide to give a few minutes, or more, to spend in prayer. Nothing gives us strength and purpose, confidence and peace, as does being in the presence of our Creator. Nothing!

And you can still include others as well, however you use your day. Pray for them, smile, assist in a task, or just say a kind word. Send an encouraging card, or pick up the phone and call. These things can make all the difference to just one person.

No matter what you choose to do with your gift, always remember, it is just that…a gift. We are never promised a tomorrow. But we are promised joy. And any gift given by our Heavenly Father is indeed a joyous thing!

‘This is the day that the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.’ Psalm 118:24 (ESV)

Blessings!

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Seasons…

‘To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.’ Ecclesiastes 3:1. As I grow older, the truth of this statement becomes clearer, and creates an excitement about my future. Our lives are not meant to be stagnant, never-changing. Instead they are to be like the seasons, gradually evolving, bringing their own beauty and blessings to maturity. God uses these seasons …of our lives to show us His glory, to grow us in spirit and faith, and to give us fresh perspective when we move from one to the other. We will have many beginnings, and many endings. In between, we will experience joys and sorrows, trials and victories. And each time we move on, we will be stronger, more trusting of God, and sensing the purposes He has designed for each of us. So, no matter which season you are currently living in, search, find, enjoy all the adventure, possibilities, and blessing that awaits you. Even in the midst of difficulties, we will find the good if we will seek Him, trust Him, and live for Him. And with the good, comes wisdom, knowledge, and strength. Blessings!

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He Completes His Work He Started

‘He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.’ Phil 1:6.
     When we come to a saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus, He immediately picks us up, and begins our education. No, we don’t sit in a classroom, and we don’t get a diploma upon completion.
    What does happen is this: first, Jesus saves us, then He sends the Holy Spirit to live within us. He will be with us …until the end of time as we know it. And He will teach, correct, prompt, and convict, whatever the need. Yes, we have free will, so we can choose to listen and obey, or not. If we listen, we will grow in Christ. We will become the disciples He has commanded we be. We will learn to walk with Him, and our lives will have fulfillment and joy.
     If we choose otherwise, we will be tragically devoid of the greatest blessings God has for us, and sadly we will be of no use to the Kingdom. Saved, yes. Blessed, no.
     The Holy Spirit does not stop speaking. Never. Jesus will not shut the door He has opened. He does not force, but gently urges and encourages us to partake in the abundant life He has promised us. If we will receive all He has for us, He will pour blessings on us for all our days.
     This is how God works. He will continue until we go home to live with Him forever. He never stops in His quest to have companionship, fellowship, a truly intimate relationship with His own. This, my friend, is the continued good work Jesus will do in us until the day of completion. He is faithful!
Blessings!

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‘The Lord God Has Opened My Ear

‘He awakens me morning by morning, He awakens my ear to hear as the learned. The Lord God has opened my ear.’ Isaiah 50:4-5
Isaiah was wise, and harkened to the Word that came from his Lord. He knew from where his sustenance came. And he knew God’s power, might, goodness, and wrath was like no other.
His message to Isaiah in this scripture shows not only His anger and wrath towards those who have turned away, but also the redemption, grace, and mercy He bestows on those who turn back to Him. He is the same today as He was in Isaiah’s time. Therefore, He will respond to us the same today as He did then.
So allow God to open your ear! Learn from both scripture and what God does, or does not do, in and through your life. The lessons learned from the Master are the most useful, and blessed, that you will ever learn.
Blessings!

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Something To Be Cheerful About!

God is good, and Heaven is forever. And if those two facts don’t cheer you up, nothing will. — Marie T Freeman.

Amen! Is this not a foundation of our faith? God is good…all the time! And yes, if we are trusting in Jesus, we will live forever in that glorious place called Heaven. No more worries, nor fears, nor tears, nor heartache. Only pure joy will be ours to experience.

God’s goodness is what He transfers to His children. We are the only ones blessed with the promise of everlasting life spent with Him, our loved ones, and our sisters & brothers in the faith.

Yes, we have much for which to be cheerful!

Blessings!

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Just Seven Loaves?

‘He asked them, “How many loaves do you have?” And they said, “Seven.”” Mark 8:5.

How many ‘loaves’ do you think Jesus has today?
Has He enough to meet your needs? The scripture goes on to say more than 4,000 were fed that day. And there was much left.

If God can feed 4,000 with 7 loaves of bread and a few small fish, how much more can He do in your life?

Trust Him always. He is your provider. He has compassion, and He will bring you what you need, right when you need it. His timing may not be what you would expect, but it is always perfect. You will see that when your need is met.

Give praise to Him and thank Him for His provision at all times. It is indeed endless!

Blessings!

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The Love of God

Love has its source in God, for love is the very essence of His being. — Kay Arthur
God created us in love. He watches over us in love. He works in and through us, again, in love. And what is the only thing He asks in return? Love.
Not only does God desire for us to love Him with all our hearts, our souls, and our minds (Matt 22:37), but He also has commanded that we love one another (Matt 19:1…9b) as well. When we have the love of God in our hearts, our ability to love others is infinite. We love our families, our friends, our Christian brothers and sisters, and even those who may appear unlovable, with a stronger, purer kind of love. And it is good!
Thank God today for loving so completely, and for enriching your life by instilling that love within your heart. For a heart full of His love is heart that will touch His own.
Blessings!

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‘May every heart and every home continue through the year
To feel the warmth and wonder of this season of good cheer.’
Helen Steiner Rice
My favorite poetess hit it right on! This is my wish for you. No matter your circumstances, no matter your financial picture, no matter the ups and downs you face, look up, and give praise. What a difference our Savior makes in our lives. If we would just remember this, and let our hearts smile and be happy, this world would be impacted for Christ with joy and thanksgiving so much more. Jesus is indeed the reason for the season. And He is living today, and tomorrow, and forever more. He is the warmth and wonder that lives within us. Let’s show Him to everyone around us!
Blessings!

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Kindness

Kind words have echoes that last a lifetime & beyond. — From 100 days of Prayer for Women.

Think about your words. Don’t rush with a criticism or harsh word, no matter the circumstance. Our words are powerful, and can either encourage or kill a person’s spirit. Weigh the meaning & tone & make a difference for an outcome that brings blessing rather than anger or hurt.

Be blessed!

From Living Water Daily Devotionals by Lili Richey Willard

Link: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Living-Water-Daily-Devotionals-by-Lili-Richey-Willard/190291087679936?ref=hl

 

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