The WAR within me

Facing a trial in our lives can make us feel like someone has waged an all-out war against us. Nothing seems to go our way. We can’t even see a light at the end of the tunnel. It can be sickness, it can be marital problems, it can be financial crisis; it truly can be anything or everything at the same time! This isn’t necessarily good news (or new news), but there IS good news for us as believers.

We don’t have to look far to see that we aren’t the only followers of God who have encountered some extreme battles against our faith in Him. Over and over again throughout the Old Testament, the Jewish people faced exile and captivity. It must have seemed as though it would never end, but the prophet Isaiah had words of comfort for them.

He told them that their “warfare was over” and to remember that the One who “created all the stars” gives “power to the weak and strength to the powerless.” He encouraged a people who were faced with bondage and slavery that their God hadn’t misplaced a single star, and He wasn’t about to forget them either.

Just imagine that. Your warfare is OVER. Does it feel that way? Probably not. You probably have reminders of your battles every single day, but Isaiah wrote those words to a nation that was facing a Babylonian conquest which would end in their exile, and before it even began God was declaring through His prophet that it was already over!

Isn’t it amazing to think that our Creator has seen our end from the beginning? He knew what we would face and feel before we were ever born, and yet still He tells us that the victory is won in Christ Jesus! It’s this truth that we hold to. This is the “confident trust in the Lord” that Hebrews 10 tells us not to throw away, that we can patiently endure the storm KNOWING God has already secured the outcome. The fight is fixed! And YOU are the winner.

In Romans 15:13, Paul gives us this prayer he prayed for the church in Rome, and it’s a prayer I pray for you now. No matter WHAT you are facing, “I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.” Remember that weeping may endure for a night, but JOY comes in the morning! Lift up your eyes and see, the sun is rising!

GOD’S GLORY ON DISPLAY

THOUGHT:
God’s glory is the magnificence of His splendour. It’s part of who God is. His character and His nature. It is too wonderful for anybody to put into words. When His attributes are seen in our lives, God Himself is seen in our lives. His glory is displayed in our activity.

It pleased God to have his whole nature living in Christ, so whenever anybody looks at Jesus Christ, they are looking at God. Jesus is God’s glory on display for all to see.

Becoming a Christian is turning back to God and asking Jesus to occupy your life. The Christian now lives to please Christ instead of pleasing self. Everything we did at one time was to show the world who we are. Now we are on display for Jesus. God’s magnificence should start to shine through our lives.

For whatever reason God has decided to reveal Himself to people through people. God chose us to show Himself to others. We are His body and He is our head. We take our instructions from Him and His glory is on display through our lives.

TIME TO THINK:
Does my life reflect the glory (goodness) of God?
What’s one thing I could change to better represent who God is?

PRAYER:
Father, it is amazing that you have decided to dwell in our broken lives. Your glory is seen in our activity when we do the things You

The courage to fogive

Forgiveness Born Out Of Love

Have you ever heard someone say that they forgive you, but act like they are still angry with you? Forgiveness is much more than just words. Forgiveness is an attitude of the heart that is evident in a person’s actions.

Jesus teaches about God’s forgiveness in the parable of the prodigal son in Luke 15:11-32. In the story, the prodigal son rejected his own father and chose to live life on his own terms in a far off city. The son wasted everything his father had given him and ultimately faced starvation. Finally, coming to his senses, the boy returned home and begged his father to forgive him. The father’s response must have astounded the son.

The father did not point fingers at his son or remind him of how sinful he had acted. Instead the father said, “Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry; for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found” (Luke 15:22-24).

That is forgiveness! And that is exactly the way that God shows forgiveness to you. God’s forgiveness is born out of His deep love for you. You may have once been His lost child, but now you are found. He will not remind you of your failures or withhold His goodness from you as though He were mad at you. God loves you with an everlasting and unconditional love. In His eyes, you are no longer someone who once sinned against Him. Instead, you are perfect to Him!

Prayer for the day:

Thank God for His forgiveness. Pray that you will learn to forgive others the way that He has forgiven you.

My Life Is A Mess

My Life Is A Mess

“The meaning of life, the wasted years of life, the poor choices of life. God answers the mess of life with one word: ‘grace.'”–Max Lucado

In Jesus’ parable of the prodigal son, with whom do you identify? The prodigal? The judgmental brother? The forgiving father? At one time or another in your life you will probably have been all three. “The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf’” (Luke 15:21-23).

What a great story to teach the Bible’s central truth that God’s grace is the force that transforms our lives–it changes his righteous anger into mercy toward us, changes our unbelief into faith, and changes our lives from selfishness to service. Grace is God’s unconditional love for those who don’t deserve it.

Just when you think there is no hope for you, his grace touches your heart. Just when words of judgment on another sinner start rising up your throat, his grace leads you to choke them off before you utter them. And when someone in your life says, “I’m sorry,” quick!–get a ring, a robe, and a calf.

Comfort Zone

“But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me” 1 Corinthians 15:10, NKJV.

In every command God gives us, there’s the grace to get it done. What has God instructed you to do? What sin has He told you to stop doing? Whatever it is, His grace is available for you to accomplish it.

Flow..OnPurpose!

Search Your Heart…

Relationships can make life wonderful and some can bring you down. We already talked about choosing wisely those that help you progress and grow versus those that can make you spiral. Proverbs 12:26. prov-12-26Today Pastor talked about restoring relationships and one particular point was directly aligned with my Grace Devotional reading. If you are a believer you know that when God speaks about the same topic from different sources you better search your heart, listen and apply. I can’t reiterate the whole message but the one nugget that was a repeat was the revenge factor in the struggle to forgive.

When you tie your happiness into the offenders unhappiness you give someone the power to control your peace of mind and happiness. Think about how you hope something doesn’t work out or that they are miserable. You wait for it, wait for it and the blow doesn’t come. What can happen? Your bitterness grows and sometimes we want to help push their unhappiness. How… we defame their character, share the offense, embellish it, slander them, anything to diminish them and make yourself the superior person. Proving your superiority you become all the things you are blaming them of being. You are investing so much energy on making sure you orchestrate their unhappiness. Of course all the time pretending like we don’t have ill will. Someone has to pay right? You need to fuel that superiority by staying angry at the offender. What can help, because really it’s not healthy and certainly isn’t how God intends for us to live.

1. Deal with your issue of superiority. Look inside for your insecurity, why are you self justifying your actions to harm, is your view of self distorted? What is lacking in you that you feel the only solution is for you to show them, teach them a lesson?

2. Deal with the issue of liability. Why do you want to make sure the other person pays? Are you harsh, withdrawn entirely, ignoring them? If you are dealing with a person who is broken believe that they are hitting bumps and getting bruises daily in life as a result of their actions. Can you be the person that graces them with the forgiveness you have been granted over and over? To forgive we need to move in the act before our hearts fully forgives. If we are waiting for the feeling and not acting we will be waiting forever.

3. Overcome evil with good.. Love your enemies Proverbs 25:21 If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat; if he is thirsty, give him water to drink. 22 In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head, and the Lord will reward you.

Once you deal with these things you can approach and discuss the offense in wisdom and love.

I know I know. So hard right? Aren’t the most fulfilling things those that we have put forth the greatest effort. Working on forgiveness and I am thankful that God is working and showing me how to be better.

XOXO ~ Cybill

Why did I lose power?

Discconnected-from-God-e1353518465261Mark 8:36 – 37 [Msg]
36 What good would it do to get everything you want and lose you, the real you?
37 What could you ever trade your soul for?
I felt like I have lost my compassion for the people.  I have become cynical  and callous with  people I spend time with.  I didn’t notice it right away, it wasn’t until one of my associates (who never agrees with anything anyone says unless its negative) agreed with every word that slipped out of my mouth.  I felt the light go on in my head.  I had an internal conversation in that moment…”Am I being TOXIC? Why am I not extending GRACE to people?  Why am I so ANGRY?” For 24 hours I took a break from everything and I traced my steps to see what had changed, where did I shift and miss it?
I had stepped-out on my relationship with God.  I made a turn to do what I wanted to do without seeking God – I remember when I did it.  I chose to do what I wanted to do and not what was best for me.  No studying, no worshipping, no discipline, no nothing good for my soul!!  I reverted back to a place God delivered me from.  I was in CONTROL MODE!
I had lost my eternal perspective on what was important and what was not.  I clearly lost the space where I use to experience God’s unfailing love and amazing forgiveness.  I had become numb to compassion.  I had put on my worldly outfit and stepped out on GOD and was walking in SELF and not faith.
Having & being in Control is one of the areas [Soft Spots] in my life that keeps me from experiencing God to the fullest.  It clearly blocks my way to all that God has for me.
What is the one thing that might be “blocking the way” to experiencing God fully for you?
Pray this prayer with me:
Lord, help me to see how much I lose when I lose you.  My perspective on my life and all of life gets distorted when I don’t make space for You, operating in your love for me.  Your love is better than life and truly I long for more tastes of that love.  Fill me with Your compassion, Your heart, Your eyes, Your ears and use me as a vessel to show YOUR love for me and someone who needs a touch, word or a miracle from YOU, THIS I ask in Your Precious Son’s Name, AMEN!!
Written by: The “Butterfly”
Reconnecting with God…OnPurpose!