Peace by definition means, “freedom from war”, Think about that for a minute. Worry, stress, anxiety, fear…none of these things are from God. They are from the enemy, an enemy that is in a battle for your soul. A war is raging and God offers you Peace.
Read Mark 4:35-41, I love this verse, Jesus wakes up, calms the storms with just a word, and then calls the disciples out. “Why are you such cowards? Don’t you have any faith at all?” Looking at this situation as an on looker, You honestly think the disciples are dumb dumbs. The son of the living God is in your boat! Your not going to drown. But how many times have we been in a storm, and all we can think is “I’m going to drown, don’t you care God?” The whole time he is looking down saying, “I’m in your boat, dumb dumb.”
Peace is not the absence of conflict or trouble, but rather a calm understanding inside that lets you know that God is in control no matter what the circumstances around you may be. It is easy to look around and be worried or anxious about the bad things that you see. The bible tells us that not to worry (Matt 6:25-34) but instead talk to God about the worries you have, and He will give you peace that passes all understanding.
Featured photo credz to Luca Bravo!
It’s a New Year with a fresh start! I can start eating better. I can read my bible more! I can spend more time with family. I can be better than I was last year… This is always the New Years mentality. I find the New Year even giving me a surge of determination. With this new sense of drive, I find myself asking, why?
Why do I wait for passing year for a “fresh start”? I always have that option no matter the time of year. I find that this fresh start has always been possible. A fresh start or A New Year’s Resolutions is always possible with God. I find that no matter how great the resolution, I will always fail. I’m human. My own willpower will never be enough. I believe if I want my resolution to last it needs to have something more then my human willpower backing it up. Lets face the facts, My willpower will only last me so far into this new year, and the minute things start getting hard willpower checks out. Willpower is fueled by my mind, will, and emotions. If I really don’t want to go to the gym my mind will give plenty of excuses not to go. “I just ate.” “My knee is killing me.” “I think chasing Little Johnny on the playground counted as cardio.” The mind is deceitful above all things. Fact is I am instructed to be spirit-led, not willpower-led (Meyer, 2007). My soul’s (mind, will, emotions) determination can only drive me so far, but I’m going to need God’s Spirit to get me to my goal. Zechariah 4:6 says, “Not by might, nor power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord of hosts.” #spiritpower
So instead of the normal New Year’s hype determining my motivation, I’ll rely on God’s Power to drive me through the long months ahead. Jesus did say in John 15:5, “Apart from me you can do nothing.”
God, I need you. I need you in this year to come. I need your spirit to guide and grow me into the woman you are calling me to be. My soul is weak without you. Help me beat my flesh in 2018. Be my willpower! Help me to fix my eyes on you in my weakness.
This inspired me this week. On the bible app Joyce Meyer has a 14 day devotional from her book, New Day, New You. I am really enjoying it! Check it out!!
I find myself constantly trying to earn my own salvation. I feel like I serve and I do, “God see, look what I’m doing for you.” I had to stop and check myself. In this season the enemy has been taunting me with my past. I find that I’m desperately serving to atone for past mistakes. Mistakes that have already been covered with the blood of Christ. I have already been shown mercy, grace, and love yet my humanity can’t seem to forgive myself.
I find thats the hardest part about being Christian; Accepting the love of Christ. God forgets but we remember. I know what the scripture says, He has placed my sin in the sea of forgetfulness. My sin is as far as the east is from the west. All I have to do is let go and accept God’s Mercy. Mercy is the compassion or forgiveness shown towards someone whom it is in one’s power to punish or harm. You see we know that we deserved the cross yet God choose to buy us back by the sacrifice of His only Son. God has the right to punish us for our actions except he shows us mercy, A mercy we don’t deserve. I am in awe. This love is the hardest to understand. I do not have to do anything. Nothing. There is nothing to earn, I just have to accept it.
I am writing, because I see so many of us trying to stay on the Platform in front of Pilot, I find we are trying to atone for sins already paid. Jesus already took your place, He already paid the price for your sins. He loved you so much and there was nothing you had to do. I see Pilot taking our chains off, while we are saying, “No I deserve this!!” All the while Jesus looks at us, “No, this is mine. Let me have your sin, Let me have you pain. ”
You see Our greatest Challenge is not our discipline, our devotion, it’s not the amount of things we can do. Our greatest challenge is believing the Gospel. Letting go and letting God take our shame and turn it into something beautiful. You are beautiful and worthy of the this great love story. You are His Daughter and Son.
God, I can’t put my mind around the love you gave. You overwhelm me. I am in awe. God I pray for myself and everyone else reading this, Help us not work to deserve something already given. Help us accept Your Love in a new way. Help us accept and show your love in the world around us. You are a good good Father and I love you so so much. Thank you for your love that I do not deserve. Thank you for saving me and taking my place. Amen.
Not long after I became a Christian, at the age of 12, I started having a burning desire for more of God. I wanted to serve Him in anyway I could and by 15, at youth camp in Alvin, Texas God spoke into my life of a Destiny. He planted a vision in my mind so BIG that I have felt restless to find it. As luck, a.k.a God would have it I recently started reading a book that I bought years before. Restless by Jennie Allen, is a book about finding your purpose in God. Not far into the book I am struck by Jennie’s words, “No unique purpose for your life will fill your soul. The only thing that will fulfill and settle your soul is God himself.” Here I am with this aching for purpose and I have it in my hands the whole time; God. It was so simple, but I’ve been missing it. My soul has been so focused on fulfilling God’s purpose for my life that I missed the fact I have already found it in God. God is my purpose.
So I might not know how exactly my life will pan out, but I know that God is real. God loves me and has a plan for me. God is coming and as heaven draws near I want to take as much part in God’s epic story as I can.
“If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.” – C.S. Lewis
Check out Restless by Jennie Allen
Joy is available just as misery is available. Peace is available as is turmoil. Righteousness is available as is condemnation. You can choose blessings or curses. You always have a choice. We will never enjoy life unless we make the conscious decision to do so! You can choose to have a day full of Joy, that is why Deuteronomy 30:19 tells us to choose life and blessings.
The first thing as believers is to know that God intended you to walk in continual Joy, and second is to tap into it!
The choice has always been yours.
“I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live,”
Deuteronomy 30:19 ESV
“…And do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.””
Nehemiah 8:10 ESV
Waiting is hard, but I feel I am meant for more.
I hear the hackling of the vultures,
They pick at my relentlessly
I am tired and bitter
They circle overhead waiting my next move.
They want me to fail.
I feel already have.
I fall to my knees.
I do the only thing I have left.
I let go.
I let go of everything I think I am.
What I think I’m meant to do.
Something begins to stir deep in my soul.
I’m still in the desert, but I smell the rain in the distance.
I Am His.
I Am His.