In this narrative, we find Zacharias and Elizabeth faithfully following the Lord and His ways. An area of lack remained in their lives despite this. Almost surprisingly, we discover that this lack was God-ordained! God had chosen this couple to bring forth John the Baptist–forerunner of Jesus–at just the right moment of time. Continue reading
The journey of renewing our minds is a process. It doesn’t occur in a moment or two. It takes consistent, daily moments with Jesus over time. Nonetheless, it is one of the most beautiful parts of our journey with Him.
How can we do our part in this? By spending time with Christ in worship, prayer, and meditating on His Word.
Renewing our minds with God’s Word helps us grow in faith, hope, love and all the fruit of His Spirit. As we spend time studying and meditating on His Word, we will experience transformation through His truth and by His Spirit.
“I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”
– Romans 12:1-2 (NKJV)
Father God loves to set us free from lies we believe and wrong mindsets we struggle with. He wants to transform our perspective concerning Him, ourselves and others. He even wants to help us not be led by our emotions when they are about to lead us astray.
Do you need peace in your life, freedom from fear and anxiety, an attitude adjustment, or other things?
Sometimes our journey of friendship with God isn’t all roses. Roses are beautiful and lovely in appearance and fragrance. They are given to show love, that we are held dear to the heart of the Giver.
But roses also have thorns. When we pick up a rose, we are careful to avoid grabbing the stem where a thorn resides, so we are not stabbed by it. At the same time, we know the thorn is there as we acknowledge it by our making room for it.
When we pursue the Lord, we cannot ignore the hard things. We know they are there. God knows they are. He sees our hearts and all we go through, and He wants to touch our lives even in these areas. But if we pretend these things don’t exist, it can hinder Him from fashioning us in those areas.
Impurities must be brought to surface for the revealing of the fine silver that is us.
It is in the refining that the beauty is able to come forth. Ashes before beauty. The coal before the diamond. But if the pressure upon that coal is hindered, the diamond will not fully come forth.
It is painful at times, but He is worth it, and His glory to be revealed in us is worth it.
Let Him bring the fullness of His character forth in your life. He makes all things beautiful in His time. You will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
Some of you may be experiencing pain, suffering and even hopelessness, perhaps for a long time. You may feel that you are at your breaking point or far beyond it. Hold on to Jesus. The Lord will come through for you, though it seems He has delayed.
“…we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.“
Romans 5:3-5 (NKJV)
This seems backwards for what we might think. Don’t we need hope in order to persevere? But true hope is refined in the fires of trial, where it is harder to believe than in times of ease.
God’s hope never disappoints. Through the suffering you are experiencing, God is bringing forth the good of perseverance in your life. And through your perseverance, His heart and His character are being formed in you.
As you begin to see how He is working in you, the hope you so desperately need will begin to come forth. Hope arises within you because God’s love and tender care for you is being revealed as He gives His help, wisdom and understanding in your heart and life. You begin to experience what the Scriptures say: that the Holy Spirit has poured forth the Father’s love into your heart and it will never be taken away.
I know it isn’t at all easy as I share this, having gone through hopelessness, trials and pain as well, even at times to the point of wanting to simply be done with the earthly life and escape to be in Heaven with the Lord. It can be most difficult because in the midst hopelessness, it may seem that change will never come. Continue reading
You and I are called to a holy pursuit: the pursuit of friendship with God. Our goal? The closest possible relationship we can have with the Lord, even on this side of eternity. This is the center from which our lives and His Kingdom flow.
The Lord alone satisfies. As wants for success, love, and contentment surface in your life, keep this truth in mind. This truth is key to our pursuit of Jesus.
When we know worldly pursuits will never satisfy, we will more readily refuse to seek other things to meet our God-given longings. We will resolve within ourselves to stay steady on a pilgrimage of pursuit after God’s heart.
“Blessed is the man whose strength is in You,
Whose heart is set on pilgrimage.“
Psalm 84:5 (NKJV)
At times the yearning within your heart may make itself known with impatience and neediness as you say no to worldly ways, fleshly lust, and selfish pride. But simply remind your soul: Jesus is worth every self denial. He is worth the weeping, the aching, the waiting.
Keep going and don’t give up. Keep saying “yes” to this pilgrimage day by day, even through the failures and temptations. Get back up again and reset your face upon Jesus. Continue reading