God does a good work in us

There are a lot of things I can do now that I couldn’t do before. There are things I would have never dreamed of being able to do before but now they are second nature. God has changed me and He keeps changing me as I lean on Him and I rely on Him. His Word is a lamp unto my feet and it is showing me the way. It is molding me, sharpening me and teaching me. God and His Word have revolutionized my life in ways that are just out of this world. Looking back I can see the hand of God in my life and I am experiencing the fruit of this labor of love. I worked at becoming who I am now but the deeper truth is that the Lord is doing a good work in me. He is the change in me. He is the shift in my thinking. He is the alteration in my heart that gives me hope. My heart used to be filled with fear until He altered it and He became the anchor of my heart. I can’t believe all that the Lord has done and all that He is doing but as I get to know Him better, it all makes sense. God works in us when we let Him in and the work is amazing. He gives us the ability to be more like Him and to grow beautifully. Today I want to encourage you to give God control of the areas of your life that you have been holding on to. The change and the growth come when we let go and we let God do what He does best.

Many people are trying to improve their lives by focusing on self-improvement and they search high and low for places where they can find the power to change. They want to change for the better and they are ready to try anything. I have always been interested in self-improvement and I have missed the mark many times. My problem was that I was trying to be someone the Lord didn’t want me to be. I was trying hard to be more like the world and to fit into the world’s expectations. There was a lot of inner work going on and it put distance between me and God but it got me closer to that “worldly ideal” that didn’t help me. I felt empty and I didn’t enjoy myself. I had known God for some time and I discovered that I didn’t need more of the world in me; I needed more of Jesus in me. I turned to the Word of God. A friend had suggested that I went back to the basics of my faith and it started with the Word of God. As the world became a bigger part of my life, so did the Lord. His presence in me made a difference. He became the difference. He was the light that others could see. I didn’t do it so people could see me glowing. I did it so that people could see Him shining.

God does a good work in us when His Word is in our hearts. When we allow His Word to influence our thinking, something pretty miraculous happens. The seed of the Word of truth is planted in our minds and our faith gets stronger. The work of the Word of God in us is a work that is ongoing and that we shouldn’t ignore. The Word of God will never do anything in our lives if we leave our Bible on a shelf and we never open it. The Spirit of God can bring back verses to our minds and remind us of what matters but there is a need for continued fellowship with the Word. It has to be part of our family. It shouldn’t be an acquaintance. You will notice that His work is taking place. It is the Lord that is at work in you like the Bible says. His Spirit will open your eyes to what He is preparing in your heart and to how He is restructuring you and blessing you in powerful ways. Believe that He is doing something. Be confident that He who began a good work in your will carry it on to completion. He is not letting you grow alone. He is by your side and helping you along. Marvel at the work of the Lord in you. Enjoy His attention to detail and His love for every part of your life. May God bless you and protect you and remember that He will always love you!

Suggested reading: Philippians 1:6; Philippians 2:13; Ephesians 2:10

Let God handle it

Go to God first. No matter what you need or what you want, go to God first. We tend to turn to people for help. It is a natural instinct. However, God should be the first Person we turn to. We should always check in with God first. I am learning the importance of relying on the Lord before counting on anyone else. I am not saying that we should cut people off or we should isolate ourselves. God will use the right people when we talk to Him first about our situation. He sees and knows the bigger picture and He will always take care of all the details when we lean on Him. He can handle any situation. He can handle any problem and any issue we might have. If you are facing difficulties today. If you are at a loss, let God handle your situation. Talk to Him before you talk to anyone else. Give Him the chance to bless you before anything can mess you up. He knows what to say and He knows how you should think about your circumstances and how you should approach them. 

“Not one word of all the good promises that the Lord had made to the house of Israel had failed; all came to pass.”* This verse taken from chapter 21 in the Book of Joshua, declares that God can do all things. All of His promises come to pass. He can’t fail. He can’t be defeated. There is nothing we can present to God that He won’t be able to handle. Think of your worst situation and know that it is not insurmountable for God. He promises to bless you and to protect. He promises to watch over you and He will always keep His word. Now, when you are going through a tough time, God doesn’t get discouraged. He doesn’t scratch His head wondering how He is going to fix things. He is not afraid of anything. You might be concerned and you might fear what’s going on but keep in mind that your God is fearless and He will get you through anything and everything. There is something amazing awaiting you on the other side of your problems. Keep pushing and keep knowing that God is handling your business now and He is doing something great behind closed doors. He is telling you today that it is handled. Trust Him. He keeps His promises and He still performs miracles today.

I stand on Luke 1:37 a lot. It says that “For nothing will be impossible for God.” That blows my mind. I actually read this scripture all the time and every time I do, I am in awe. There are no limits to what God can do. This is a very good reason why we should let Him handle everything that happens in our lives. The creator of the universe is the most capable Person we will ever encounter. God can and will make things right in your life, friend. Give Him your worst nightmares. Give Him your biggest problems. Give Him your dilemmas and your difficulties. Give Him your best moments and your best seasons as well. Let Him handle all parts of your life. Whatever is going on, good or bad, give it to God. Give it to God and be merry. Give it to go and be at peace. Give it to God and praise away. Give it to God and remain strong. Give it to God and expect the best. Give it to God and see how He handles it all. Thank God that He can help you. Develop the mindset of the one who knows without the shadow of a doubt that God can handle his or her life. You are in perfect hands. God is on your side. Stay encouraged! May God bless you and protect you and remember that He will always love you!

Suggested reading: Genesis 18:14; Joshua 21:45*; 2 Timothy 2:13

You are justified

Yesterday I woke up to a beautiful message from the Lord. He whispered it softly to my heart. He said “You are justified.” I meditated on those words to get the meaning behind them. He explained that when we walk in faith, when we walk in love, when we walk in peace, when we bring joy, we are justified. Our faith is justified. Our love walk is justified. We have the right to pursue love, to walk in faith and to try to be at peace with everyone. Jesus, our Savior, is our justification. He justifies it all. We are not doing anything in vain. We are never wasting our time. We are never doing the wrong thing when we are doing what the Lord tells us to do in His Word. Today I want to relay this message to you and tell you that you are doing the right thing. You are advancing the kingdom of God every time you do God’s will. There is a major justification attached to all the good you are doing in this world so keep doing it. Keep being love, joy, peace and faith to this world that is hurting so badly.

“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”* One thing that I think is important to remember is that because we have faith, we are connected to God. Our faith is our entryway to a relationship with God. Without faith we can’t please God and without faith we can’t know God. It is not that God is mad at us if we don’t believe Him. It means that faith is the bridge between God and us and we are justified by that bridge. Faith is what allows us to have this life with God. Faith is the explanation for this relationship, this covenant. Faith makes it possible for us to communicate with God. Faith makes it all happen. Faith is the validation of our lives in Christ. You have the right to rejoice and to thank God for this great relationship that you have. You should also do your best to develop a bond with God. Your faith is your justification for the growth of your relationship with God. The enemy will try his best to convince you that you can’t talk to God, that you shouldn’t pray or that God is not listening to you. Those are lies. You are justified by your faith. You have access to the Father and God listens to you. 

God’s number one commandment to us is to love Him and to love others as ourselves. This great commandment is also a justification for our actions. We are encouraged to walk in love with everyone even with those that are hard to love. The other big part of this commandment is that if we are to love God, we are to follow Him and to abide by His Word. All the wonderful encouragement and recommendations in the Word of God are for us. “Seeking God’s kingdom” first should be our reality. We can do it and we should do it. Praying, praising the Lord, interceding for others, spreading love, spreading joy and making sure that people are blessed are all ways we can seek the kingdom of God and we are justified in all of them. I have been through seasons when I was a bit discouraged because I didn’t see the fruit of what I was doing. I wanted results. I wanted to see the positive effects of my actions but nothing was happening. I had the wrong mindset. It is not about seeing things develop in the natural. It’s about doing what we are justified to do and doing it in faith knowing it before seeing any of it.

Keep doing what you are doing for the Lord and for others, friend. You are justified. You are doing the right thing. You are bringing peace into this world and you are touching lives. Keep your eyes on Jesus and keep the Word of God in the middle of your heart. Work with the Spirit of God and keep pushing love into this world. It is people like you that make a difference every day and what you are doing to advance the kingdom of God doesn’t go unnoticed. Stay strong and keep going. May God bless you and protect you and remember that He will always love you!

Suggested reading: Romans 3:24-26; Romans 5:1*; 1 Corinthians 1:30

The positivity challenge

I love getting challenges from God. They are almost meant to help me grow and they are always in line with His Word. One of the recurring themes is positivity. God challenges me to stay positive very often. I am up for the challenge this week and I decided to make it a point to stay positive this week. This goes beyond what we picture as being positive most of the time. I am letting my positive attitude pair up with my faith and I will be expecting good things. I won’t just stay positive when things go wrong. I am going to be positive for things to come. I am going to have an active positivity that will feed off of my faith. The goal is to look at the days ahead with faith and expressing my faith with a positive attitude and outlook. I don’t know what this week has in store. There will be good times and bad times. There will be things that I can’t control but one thing I can control is my reaction to those events. Please join me in this challenge. Make up your mind and stay positive. Take a minute to think about the rest of the week with a positive mindset. God is with you every single day of the week so no matter what happens, you will have Him to back you up and to support you. Your positive attitude fueled by your faith in God is allowing you to win the battles this week. Stay positive! Stay in faith! Stay in the Lord!

Positivity is defined as the practice of being or tendency to be positive or optimistic in attitude. Now, we can be optimistic by nature and always hope for the best. I know some people who are always positive and they don’t know God. Their positivity is great and it is inspiring but it lacks a strong foundation at times and they crumble easily when the wind blows. We as believers have the most powerful foundation there is. Our hope is founded on Jesus. He is the author of our faith and the hope we can rely on. We need to live it up and to make it a daily reality. We should keep standing on our amazing foundation. Let’s stop looking for the next best thing that might keep us steady on our feet. There is nothing and no one better than Jesus. Trends and fads come and go and some seem very appealing but nothing will ever replace Jesus. He is the hope of the world and we can have an optimistic attitude because of Him. Our optimism should stem from our relationship with Him and we should base everything on His promises. He promises to bless us, to protect us and to help us. That is a lot of hope right there. Those are great reasons to be positive.

In Psalm 33, David invites us to hope in the steadfast love of the Lord. His love is constant. It doesn’t vary and He doesn’t run dry. You can be assured that God is going to love you all week long no matter what you do and no matter what happens to you. His steadfast love is going to carry you. You can count on the love that changes everything. You can count on the Lord’s resurrection power that lives in you thanks to His love. Stay positive this week because God has a love for you that will not let you down. His love is going to conquer your mountains. Expect that. Expect great things. Expect miracles. Expect love all week long. Challenge your emotions and your feelings by staying positive in Jesus. You will see that amazing things take place when you stay strong in your faith and when you refuse to yield to any negativity. Your positivity is a great testimony to your faith in the One whose love has won all wars. Stay positive, friend! Don’t lose hope. Keep your eyes on Jesus. Know that God is still on the throne. Your faith is going to take you places that you never knew existed. May God bless you and protect you and remember that He will always love you!

Suggested reading:  Psalm 33:18; Mark 9:23; 2 Corinthians 3:12-14

Bind love around your neck

Every time I read the book of Proverbs, I get a lesson on how to treat others and how to grow in wisdom. It appears clearly that being kind and loving others are linked to spiritual maturity and wisdom. I am learning that God is more interested in the shape of our hearts than in the size of our wallets for instance. He is more interested in how much room we give to His Spirit in our hearts and not how successful we are. He is interested in all aspects of our lives but He is Spirit and the spiritual part of our lives is very important to Him. In the book of Proverbs we find a lot of figurative language and there is much to decipher but some of the messages are clear. They are about acquiring wisdom and understanding of the things of the Lord. Like I said before, love is connected to wisdom and we can’t grow in the knowledge of the things of the Lord if we don’t acknowledge love. Kindness is something that gets put on the back burner a lot these days. We see a lot of selfish behaviors everywhere. God is not a selfish God and He invites us to be more like Him. He wants to spread His love in our hearts and it is our mission to recognize that we need to be vessels of love and that if we want to get closer to God, love is going to have to be our way of life.

“Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.”* This verse found in the 3rd chapter of the book of Proverbs sums up a powerful message from the Lord. Love should always be in us. Love should guide us. Love should direct our steps. Love should be in our minds and in our hearts. Love should be our motivation and our intention. Love should be our goal. Love should be our house. We should live in the house of love all the time. No need to step outside and walk down the streets of meanness and wickedness. There is already too much hate out there and it is sad when we see it coming out of the church. The Lord never said that we should love a chosen few and discriminate against those whose lifestyles or habits are deemed impure. God is love and He asks us to walk with Him and walk in love. We ought to bind love around our necks. Sometimes our necks have too many chains around them and none of them are chains of love. We put on imitation chains of kindness when we are called to wear the pure and unchanging love of the Lord.

What do you have written on the tablet of your heart? Do you have your own agenda? Do you have a list of dreams in your heart? I believe that it is wonderful to be ambitious and to have great dreams in our hearts but the most crucial writing in our hearts should be love. Love should occupy the most space in our hearts. The Holy Spirit is in our hearts and we should embrace Him and let Him decorate the rest of our hearts with love and great intentions to bless others. There is so much love that is missing in this world and you and I have the power to broadcast a love that changes lives. Let’s work in unison with the Spirit of God and give love to anyone we interact with. God is no respecter of persons and the same goes with love. Love sees no color and passes no judgement. When we focus on love and we stay on the path of God’s love, we will have favor and we will be shining lights that disperse the darkness that is so rampant.

Bind love around your neck today. Carry it everywhere you go. Give it freely. Walk and run in love. Let love be your everything. Be an agent of love. Be an agent of the Lord. Be an agent of change. You are not only going to grow in wisdom when you stay in love but you are also going to do great things for the Lord. Stay encouraged in love. Keep spreading kindness and peace. May God bless you and protect you and remember that He will always love you!

Suggested reading: Proverbs 3:3-4*; Luke 6:28; Romans 12:14

Saying I love You to God

I remember a few years ago, out of the blue, I told Jesus, “I love You so much.” It struck me that I usually told Him I loved Him when I was praying or when I was praising Him. I didn’t tell Him I loved Him enough.  I needed to increase the frequency of the love letters I wrote to Him in my mind. I decided to have a stream and a thread of “I love You’s” sent to the Lord on a regular basis. Adoring the Lord is our life purpose. Praying Him. Lifting Him up and loving Him. It is going back to the basics and we need that at times. We need to go back to simply loving God and showing Him that we love Him. We need to quit thinking primarily about what we can gain from God and think about what we can do to demonstrate our love for Him. He is to be worshipped and to be put on a pedestal. Unfortunately, way too often, He has to share the podium with other idols and things that we love too much. We don’t always realize it but we have small and big idols in our lives and we believe it is harmless because it is not hurting us but it is hurting our relationship with the Lord. 

“Love the Lord with all your heart” is what we are commanded to do and it is not a tall order. It is the best advice, the best commandment and the best wish we could have for anyone. We should wish that people could get to the point where they love the Lord with all their hearts because it is the best thing for them. It is a blessing to know the Lord and to love Him. It is a miracle to get saved and to do life with Jesus. It is an honor to walk with the Lord. It is amazing to have His love in our lives and to be able to love and to grow in this love. I am convinced that we ought to keep sending “I love Yous” to Jesus. They don’t have to be words. They can be actions and deeds. They can be thoughts. They can be reactions. We have many ways to express our love for Jesus and every one of those ways are avenues that we should explore and become familiar with. Every day is a great opportunity to tell Jesus we love Him. Every day we can walk down the road of gratitude, thanksgiving and adoration and make sure that we stop by all the places where our love is expressed and our intention is to magnify the Lord.

When we love someone, we like to spend time with them. I do spend one one one time with the Lord and I strongly suggest that you do the same. It is what changed my spiritual life. I understand that sometimes we are cozy where we are and we don’t feel. There is always more and keeping that in mind is important. We can always get closer. We can always get to know Him better. The search and the quest to know Him more will never end. There is more love to be given and more love to be expressed. What would God want me to do? Is a wonderful question to ask. When we love someone, we wonder what we could do to make them happy. What could you do today to tell Jesus you love? What can you do to please Him? Love your neighbor like yourself is a perfect start. My prayer for you today is that you tell Jesus you love Him in the best way you know how and that the Holy Spirit will reveal others ways you can express that love. May God bless you and protect you and remember that He will always love you so love Him back all the time!

Suggested reading: Luke 10:27; 1 John 4:19; Romans 5:8

“Come to Me” says the Lord

Then Jesus said, “Come to Me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you. Let Me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For My yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”* Reading this verse always fills me with joy and peace. I have been tired a lot lately. I feel like there are some heavy burdens on my back sometimes and I have to rest and give them to the Lord. Life can drop heavy weights on us that we can barely handle. Stress is a major weight that falls on many people’s lap. Worry is another burden. Fear is a huge burden. There are also burdens that are more concrete such as work and bills. Sickness and any type of physical exhaustion are burdens. Anything bad and negative is a burden. We are not meant to carry all these burdens. If the body of Christ learned how to turn those burdens over to the Lord, there would be a people whose care is light and whose peace is intense. I do know people who do an excellent job turning burdens over to the Lord. The goal is to let Him carry them and for us not to go back to those burdens. Faith is a big part of that process.

Jesus is inviting you and me to go to Him. He wants us to spend time with Him. We are to seek His face and focus on Him. If you are weary, tired and burdened today, the Lord is calling you. He would like to hear from you and He is waiting for you to find peace in Him. He is not going to judge you. He is not going to turn you down because you did something bad. He is welcoming you with open arms. He knows that what He has is exactly what you need. He is smiling at you and ready to hold you in His loving arms. He can give you rest. He will give you rest. Ask Him for relief. Ask Him for peace. Ask Him to carry what is breaking your back today. Say a simple prayer. Open your heart and let Him in. Your burdens are not forever. The stress and the pressure you are under are not meant to last because Jesus will set you free. Go to Him for deliverance. He is going to remove the burdens and the pain.

I pray to the Lord every single day. I pray more than once a day. Most of my prayers are conversations with Him. I listen and I speak. There are times when my prayers are requests. I start by telling Him that I am nothing without Him. I humble myself. I show my vulnerability and I confess that He is the only One who can help me. He loves when we depend on Him. He can trade our burdens for His yoke and His yoke is light. His yoke is peace and freedom. I love it when I receive those great blessings from the Lord. They come when I give in. They come when I rely on Him. He is faithful and He always gives when we ask. Let’s knock on His door and let’s expect Him to answer our prayers.

Jesus guarantees that we will find rest for our souls. Our souls are where all our emotions and feelings are. This means that He is the giver of peace who can suppress our negative emotions. He is bigger and stronger than our feelings. When fear attacks, God is stronger. He can put all our chaotic feelings to rest. Rest is a period of relaxation. Most of the time people have to take a break to find rest. Jesus can give you and me rest out of nowhere. He can give us rest when things are hectic and life is too much to handle. His rest is out of this world. His rest is powerful. May you find peace in the Lord. Go to Him. He’s calling you.He will teach you how to be at peace and how to enjoy His lightness. May God bless you and protect you and remember that He will always love you!

Suggested reading: Matthew 11:28-30*; John 6:37; John 7:37

Carry your cross

Yesterday I wrote about being God’s first responders. I wanted to dig into the idea a little more so I turned to the Bible. I found a verse that supports the “calling” of being God’s responders and that encourages us to follow Christ. In Luke 9:23, Jesus looks at his disciples and tells them, “Whoever wants to be My disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow Me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for Me will find it.” I used to dread that verse. I used to think that it was too much of a sacrifice and it only applied to people who were going into full time ministry. The truth is we don’t have to be a pastor to carry our cross. We don’t have to be on a church payroll to do the work of the Lord. All Christians are called to follow Jesus and to carry the cross. Jesus’ invitation to follow Him is a great encouragement and a great recommendation that can be fulfilled. We are not going to do all this alone. Following Jesus means that we have a leader in front of us and we are protected and we are in great hands. We can follow Christ and we can carry our cross. Do you want to be a disciple of the Lord? If He is your Savior, you have His Spirit in you. In order to become His disciple, you need to carry your cross and deny yourself. You need to be the person the Lord has made you to be and renounce your old ways. God’s first responders are disciples of the Lord and they deny themselves so that Christ in them can be magnified.

Magnifying the Lord is such a powerful thing to do. We should let Him be our everything. We should let Him be the biggest part of our lives and the biggest part of our being. “Christ in us, the hope of glory” says the Bible and we ought to let His light shine so that His glory can touch the world. There is a strong need to deny ourselves and give the Lord the keys to our house. He should always be welcome and His Spirit should be the host of our homes. I know that denying myself is a work in progress. I can’t always give my all but I am making changes in my life that will allow me to be more like Christ. Denying oneself is not always easy because it is winning the battle of the flesh. The flesh is weak but the spirit is willing. If we let our spirits guide us in unison with the Holy Spirit, we will have an easier time denying ourselves. Not being selfish, not thinking about what we can gain is what this is all about. Gaining Christ should always be the most important reward. Showing Him to the world should be the most important motive. Walking in His love should be the most exciting walk ever. Walking in faith should be a daily habit and a sweet lifestyle.

The idea of losing my life for Christ was terrifying. I didn’t want to change my ways. I wanted Jesus in my life but I also wanted to have what I considered a good and fun life. I discovered that living my life through Him and thanks to Him was the best kind of life anyone could wish for. His Spirit won me over. The amount of love and peace that were available in Him just blew my mind. I quickly realized that the love of the Lord was the most powerful force in the entire universe. His love changed everything. His love sacrifice on the cross was the most important miracle of all. Having Him as my Savior and Lord was the best change in my life and giving my life to Him was the best offering I could make. It didn’t cost me anything contrary to popular opinions. It bought me a great life so to speak. It gave me a new lease on life and a new purpose. The purpose is to care for the world with His love. The purpose is to be a beacon of hope and give people the help that is provided by the Lord. Jesus should be our source and our modus operandi. We should function through Him. You and I can carry our cross and follow Jesus. His Spirit assists us and we can be the first responders that our world needs. May God bless you and protect you and remember that He will always love you!

Suggested reading: Luke 9:23; Matthew 26:41; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

God’s first responders

I have been really into first responders shows on tv. It is not just because of my appreciation for the hard work that those people do in real life but I recently understood why I have a heightened interest in those shows. As Christians we are God’s first responders or at least we should be. A first responder is a professional trained to respond to crises that could be medical or environmental. A first responder is trained to respond to an emergency. As doers of the Word of God, we are trained. We are trained to love and care for others. We are trained to walk in faith and to be providers of hope. We are trained to walk in the power of the fruit of the Spirit. That training is crucial and if we don’t abide by the Word of God, we will fall short of that training and we will not know how to respond to all the situations around us. I want to be a first responder of the Lord. I want to be out in the field and help as many people as possible. The field is not necessarily a country far away. We have a field where we live. People need help everywhere. There are emergencies everywhere and all the time. Look around you and you will see people that need love, that need hope, that need comfort. You could be the responder that your neighbor needs or that a family member needs. Today I want to encourage you to keep getting trained by the Word of God and to look for opportunities to respond to someone’s emergency by being the person the Lord wants you to be.

When we get saved, the Spirit of God comes and dwells in us. We are blessed by His presence and we can be led by the Spirit if we yield to His guidance. I think that there is a need to learn more about the Holy Spirit and what He does in our lives. I have seen many people left to their own devices not knowing that the Spirit of Jesus was in them and not ever communicating with Him. Growth and maturity in the Spirit can take place when we are willing to be students of the Holy Spirit. When we put our trust in Him and we let our ego take a backseat, great things happen. What happens is that we become more like Jesus. The fruit of the Spirit can develop in us. It is that fruit that equips us with all the power we need  to face the harsh realities of life and to respond properly to emergencies. Love, faith, hope, peace and patience are all amazing tools that we have at our disposal. They give us what it takes to make a difference in this world. When we walk in the Spirit, there are no crises that we can’t face and nothing is insurmountable. We become God’s first responders and all we want to do is help. God is looking for people who are going to be in the forefront of the battles of faith and who are going to walk the walk and talk the talk and be who Jesus inspires them to be. Are you up for the challenge?

A first responder is not afraid to give a hand and to take on tough challenges. Why? Because he or she knows she can make a difference. See yourself as the first responder of the Lord that you are and know that you can make a difference. Not because of who you are but because of the One who lives in you. We are vessels of love and it is high time we started pouring the love of the Lord into the lives of people that surround us. Let’s respond to emergencies with Jesus. He should always be our first response and our first instinct. What would Jesus do? What would Jesus say? The Word gives us the answers. Love is the first gift we should hand out. Love is the first offering we should give to others. Love died for us so we could give love to the living and be willing witnesses to its power. There is power to heal, to restore, to mend and to make positive changes in love. I have noticed that first responders usually don’t discriminate or judge people. They treat anyone in the hospitals. They save anyone that needs saving and we can do the same thing even more because of the love of the Lord. I pray that you get to be the first responder God designed you to be. May God bless you and protect you and remember that He will always love you!

Suggested reading: Exodus 15:2; Proverbs 18:10; 2 Corinthians 12:9

Going down God’s memory lane

Dwelling on the past is not a good thing most of the time. It doesn’t help us move forward. However, there are times when we need to go down memory lane so we can keep going on our journey. There are times when we should go down God’s memory lane and look at what He has done in our lives. I used to forget about God’s blessings once they took place. I used to be in awe of His goodness and mercy but then I would go on my merry way and move on to the next blessing. I never really went back and thanked Him for what He had done. In most recent years, the Lord has shown me that it was very helpful to go back in time and see how He had come through. When you think about it, reading your Bible takes you back in time. We read stories that unfolded a long time ago. Now, one of the powerful aspects of those stories is that they inspire us today. What God did in the Bible He can still do today. His miracles are still relevant. His loving kindness still makes sense today. His hope is still alive. His peace and His joy are still available. Reading the Bible is going down God’s memory lane and giving strength to our faith. We need the Word of God today and every day. I want to invite you to go down God’s memory lane and see what He teaches in His Word and revisit His blessings in your life. They will give your faith a boost and they will exalt the Lord.

When I am facing a tough situation, my first instinct now is to thank the Lord that He will get me through it. During prayer I am often reminded of some of the past miracles and breakthroughs in my life. It helps a lot. God will do it again. He did it before and He will do it again. Nothing can stop His hand from blessing us and our faith can get us to a place where the blessings are coming down and situations get resolved. We have to maintain our faith and keep it strong. Those old memories of God’s intervention come in very handy. It doesn’t mean that God will do exactly the same thing He did in the past. He can do anything at any time so we can’t expect the same breakthroughs but we can expect Him to show up. We can expect blessings and we can expect help. God is extremely good at helping. He is the inventor of help. He created help. He gives it in the most unusual ways at times and we should have faith that He will do the impossible in our lives. Going down His memory lane is a great exercise, a great habit to have and a welcome boost to our faith.

Going down God’s memory lane reinforces our faith and it gives us more reasons to praise Him. We should always have a celebration attitude in our spiritual walk. It is the lack of praise and celebration attached with thanksgiving that kills our spiritual lives. I find that the more I thank the Lord, the closer I am to Him. The more I celebrate the Lord, the more His joy becomes my strength. Going days without praising the Lord or thanking Him is very detrimental to our faith. We wonder why things are not happening or moving in the right direction at times. We have to check our praise bank. Is it full or do we need to replenish it? Praise is a language of love directed to God. Some of the past blessings in my life fill me with so much gratitude that praise oozes out of my pores. Some of the accounts in the Bible set praise in motion in my heart. I spend some time reading the Word when I pray and I get so excited about the goodness of God. Praise Him for what He has done. Praise Him for what He is doing today and praise Him for what He will do tomorrow. Dwell on the good things of the Lord because they help your faith. Don’t dwell on the ordeals and the negative experiences. Dwell on Jesus. He will always get you through anything. May God bless you and protect you and remember that He will always love you!

Suggested reading: Numbers 6:24-26; Ephesians 1:3; James 1:17