How a Prayer Journal will Change your Life

How a Prayer Journal will Change your Life

A few years ago I started keeping a prayer journal. A lot has happened in my life since then. Truthfully, it’s been quite a rollercoaster ride. Along the way I’ve offered up many prayers to God and received many answers back from Him. So much happens that it’s easy to lose track of all of the things God has to say to me. That’s why I’m glad I started a prayer journal. When I get discouraged and think I’ll never hear from God again, I can look over my journal entries and see the goodness of God as He answered my prayers and kept me going when I wanted to give up.

I tend to keep journaling pretty simple and I don’t write in it every day.  But when God has something important to say to me or I have a deep down need to write to Him, I get it out and make an entry. Whether I feel good or bad, I pour my heart out to God on paper. Sometimes I’ll write out a prayer directly to God just as I would say it to Him.  And sometimes it’s just my feelings about the day or situation I’m in. (Hey, sometimes its silly doodles of flowers, cuz I’m girly like that! J )

No matter what I write or have to say about my crazy life, the best part of my prayer journal is keeping track of what God says back to me. His answers always give me comfort in the moment. But I also know that I will look back over them sometime in the future and find strength in His words again.

It’s always interesting to see the many different ways God has of answering prayer.

God uses His own word to speak to us. So it’s no wonder that the pages of my prayer journal are filled with scripture after scripture. Each one of them holds a special meaning to me, so I make sure to write out not only the verse but also why God gave me that particular scripture in response to my prayer.

Recently I read through some of my old entries and found a verse from Romans 15:5 “Now may the God who gives perseverance and encouragement grant you to be of the same mind with one another according to Christ Jesus.” What really sticks out to me in this verse are the words perseverance and encouragement. I’m positive that God spoke these words into my heart that day because I had asked Him for those two exact things the day before. But if I had not recorded that response from God in my journal along with my thoughts and prayer I wouldn’t be able to look back on it now and remember just how good God is in answering my prayers.

Sometimes God will speak to us through a thought or just one word that we know without a doubt is from Him. And I have pages and pages of notes God has given to me in a sudden burst of inspiration.

God speaks to us through other people. How many times have I been minding my own business and God has said something to me through another person? So many times it’s hearing the pastor preach a sermon that gets right to the heart of the matter. Or it could be having a conversation with a dear friend who openly shares her own circumstances with me. Or even just sitting in traffic and listening to a song on the radio. However God speaks to me I try to write about it in my journal. I don’t want to forget what He said and I don’t want His words to fall away unnoticed just because I get busy in this crazy mess we call life.

Just like me, I’m sure you’re on your own rollercoaster ride of nonstop action. And I promised you in the title of this post that a prayer journal would change your life. So I’d like to share with you three things that have really changed in my life since I began keeping a prayer journal. Each of them builds on the next. And before you know it your life, in particular your prayer life, will be changed!

#1 I realized God really does listen when we pray.

Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.

                                                              Jeremiah 29:12

Seeing really is believing. So, when we see God’s answers to our prayers written down in black and white, we start to understand that God really listens when we pray. As I said before, it is incredible to look back at my previous journal entries and see the way God has faithfully answered my prayers. In those times when I was desperate for an answer and couldn’t wait to hear from God, He listened and He answered.

#2 Thankfulness filled my heart.

but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;

                                                                 Philippians 4:6

How is it possible to go through difficulties and at the same time pray with thanksgiving? The answer is simple, as the pages of our journals begin to fill up, thankfulness is a natural reaction to so many answered prayers. That thankfulness builds up inside and covers all of the dark places we try so hard to hide. It grows and takes root until our hearts are filled to the brim with thankfulness for everything God has done.

#3 My relationship with God grew closer and closer the more I prayed.

The Lord is near to all who call upon Him, To all who call upon Him in truth.

                                                                Psalm 145:18

Isn’t it amazing to know that God wants to talk to us? And that He wants to have a real and meaningful relationship with us? Closeness with God is what I crave the most and it’s what I’ve found through my prayer life. The more time I spend with Him, the better my relationship with Him becomes. If like me, you’re longing for closeness with God, it’s just a prayer away. The more you call upon Him the nearer He is to you. All you have to do is start the conversation, He’ll do the rest.

I hope that this post has given you a few ideas of where to start with your prayer journal. There is no right or wrong way to do it.  A lot of people fill their journals with pictures and artwork or maybe stickers that have meaning to them. (And who doesn’t love a cute sticker? J ) Others just want to write down their feelings, thoughts or answered prayers. Whatever you choose to put in your journal, the real power within its pages is knowing that God is listening when you pray and that He is answering you too. It may sound simple, but that’s how a prayer journal will change your life! Praying for you to see answered prayers filling up your pages soon!

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By | 2018-04-18T17:26:15+00:00 April 18th, 2018|Prayer|6 Comments

Monday Motivation – Zechariah 10:1

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By | 2018-04-02T13:51:14+00:00 April 16th, 2018|Monday Motivation, Spring|0 Comments

Power of Prayer – James 5:16

Power of Prayer James 5:16

As I was researching this post, I came across some articles that claimed the power of prayer is a mysterious force. Honestly, I just don’t believe that. Prayer is not a mystery that we can’t comprehend. Like most things pertaining to God, it is simple and easy to understand. So if prayer is not a mysterious force, what is it?

Prayer is our direct line to God. When we call on Him, He hears us and He answers. It’s simple, maybe too simple for some people. Maybe they want it to be mysterious and complicated for some reason that is beyond me. But I believe in a God who loves me and wants to hear from me as much as I want to hear from Him.

Prayer is powerful! And the power of prayer is real and tangible. As real as anything we can see or touch. It is a source of strength that we, as Christians, can tap into at any time, day or night. This verse from James sums up this power perfectly.

The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

                                                               James 5:16

Prayer has the power to make things happen. Not because of our own strength, but because we have been declared righteous through faith in Jesus. He is the reason that our prayers have power!

Elijah was a righteous man. He prayed for the rain to be withheld and the Lord answered him. Then he prayed for the rain to come and the Lord answered again. Elijah didn’t just say a little prayer every now and then, he prayed continually and earnestly that God would keep the rain from falling and then that He would bring the rain. (You can read more about Elijah in 1 Kings)

Because we are righteous in God’s eyes our prayers are effective and powerful tools. We just need to practice the same kind of faithful and consistent prayer that Elijah did. Then the results will be undeniable.

Prayer has the power to make things happen. Not because of our own strength, but because we have been declared righteous through faith in Jesus. #Prayer #FaithClick To Tweet

In order for us to see the power of prayer in our lives we must first believe in it and have faith in God.

Have faith in God. For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, Be removed and be cast into the sea, and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.

                                                             Mark 11:22-24

With His words here in Mark, Jesus emphasized the power of believing and having faith.

Sometimes we pray but we don’t really believe that anything will actually happen. Or we pray and think that our problems are too big, too small, too whatever for God. We have “a wing and a prayer” mentality. Kind of like luck or happenstance. Maybe our prayers are heard and maybe they’re not.

But what Jesus is talking about here is the condition of our heart. Do we really believe that God will hear our prayers? Do we have faith that God will answer us? Because if we want to see the power of prayer, we must truly believe in it.

We can have confidence in the power of prayer.

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

                                                            Hebrews 4:16

Prayer is not a last resort. Even though we may see it that way sometimes. When something bad happens we try to fix it on our own and only turn to prayer once we have failed. (Believe me, I’m guilty of this sometimes too!)

But prayer is not our last hope, instead it is our greatest offense and our best option in all circumstances. No matter what is going on in our lives, good or bad, God wants to hear about it. There is no need to worry about if it’s okay or how they will be received. We can boldly take all of our problems right to His throne of grace in our time of need.

I my life I have seen the power of prayer many times. But never more than when my mom had cancer. The doctors gave her about three months to live, however God gave us three more years together. And I have no doubt that it was the power of prayer at work. So many people were praying for my mom. Our family and friends, two whole churches, even people we didn’t know. They were all praying for her. And guess what… God heard their prayers. He listened and He cared. He knew that our family was in need and He didn’t let us down. It was during this time that God allowed me to experience the power of prayer firsthand. I could see how prayer is the solution to all of life’s problems and how we can have complete confidence in taking everything to God in prayer.

So you see, there is nothing mysterious about the power of prayer. We are simply having a conversation with a loving and faithful God.

Isn’t it amazing to know that the Creator of the universe, the One who spoke the world into motion wants to speak to you? God loves you and He wants to hear from you. So, today, I pray that you will claim the power of prayer and see the undeniable results in your life.

Until next time, God bless!

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By | 2018-04-11T14:57:47+00:00 April 11th, 2018|Christian Life, Prayer|5 Comments

Encouraging Bible Verses about Prayer

Bible Verses About Prayer

The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

                                                               James 5:16

Prayer is powerful! And it has the ability to accomplish so much in our lives. It is our direct line to the creator of the world. Each prayer lifted up to God is a powerful and effective tool.  Below are some of the many Bible Verses about Prayer. I pray that they will help you to take hold of this amazing power and see it at work in your life.

God promises to hear our prayers.

God hears every one of our prayers and He answers them too. This is our promise from God, He hears us when we call out to Him and He will not ignore or forsake us in our weakness. That is the kind of promise that gives us complete confidence. We can take anything to God. No matter how big or small our troubles are, He wants to talk to us about it.

Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.  And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.

                                                                 1 John 5:14-15

Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 1 John 5:14 #Prayer #BibleVerses Click To Tweet

The Lord is near to all who call upon Him,
To all who call upon Him in truth.

                                                                Psalm 145:18

Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.

                                                                Jeremiah 29:12

The Lord is far from the wicked,
But He hears the prayer of the righteous.

                                                               Proverbs 15:29

  

Prayer in the Psalms

The Psalms are filled with heartfelt cries to Our Heavenly Father. Here is a select few to start with. I encourage you to seek out others. They will lift you up as you lift up your prayers to God. And don’t forget, praying scripture, God’s own word, back to Him is powerful. So, don’t be afraid to recite these verses or even part of them to God.

I have called upon You, for You will hear me, O God;
Incline Your ear to me, and hear my speech.

                                                                Psalm 17:6

My voice You shall hear in the morning, O Lord;
In the morning I will direct it to You,
And I will look up.

                                                              Psalm 5:3

My voice You shall hear in the morning, O Lord; In the morning I will direct it to You, And I will look up. Psalm 5:3 #PrayerClick To Tweet

He shall regard the prayer of the destitute,
And shall not despise their prayer.

                                                              Psalm 102:17

Let my prayer be set before You as incense,
The lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.

                                                               Psalm 141:2

Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness!
You have relieved me in my distress;
Have mercy on me, and hear my prayer.

                                                             Psalm 4:1

 

Jesus prayed.

Here’s an amazing thought, Jesus prayed for help the same way we do. When He needed help, He went to God in prayer. When we need help, we should follow His example and take our troubles to God too.

Again, a second time, He went away and prayed, saying, “O My Father, if this cup cannot pass away from Me unless I drink it, Your will be done.”

                                                                  Matthew 26:42

Now it came to pass in those days that He went out to the mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.

                                                                 Luke 6:12

 

Jesus taught us how to pray.

The Lord’s Prayer is a passage of scripture that we are all familiar with. We have heard it many times and probably know it by heart. But there is a pattern to this prayer that teaches us how to pray. Within it, there are six requests. The first three are to see the kingdom come, or God’s will in our lives. The second three are to meet the needs of the one praying. Then it ends with praise for God. It is perfectly okay to recite these words of Jesus as is, or use them as a template to follow in our own prayers.

In this manner, therefore, pray:

Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
 And forgive us our debts,
As we forgive our debtors.
And do not lead us into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

                                                          Matthew 6:9-13

 

Holy Spirit prays for us when we don’t know what to pray.

Sometimes we just don’t know what to pray. The words get caught in our throat or they just don’t come at all. But that’s okay, because in these moments our Helper, the Holy Spirit, prays for us. This is honestly one of my favorite verses. It shows how much love God has for us and how He accounted for every hardship we could possibly face. It gives me so much encouragement to know that in my weakness the Holy Spirit is praying for me. I hope that knowing the Spirit is praying for you will give you the same encouragement it has given me.

Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

                                                                   Romans 8:26

This is not in any way a comprehensive list of every Bible verse about prayer. But I hope and pray that it encourages you in your daily walk with Christ. And that it gives you a starting place to search out more scriptures and have a more fulfilling prayer life. May God bless you as you continue steadfastly in prayer!

rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer;

                                                               Romans 12:12

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By | 2018-04-04T12:59:39+00:00 April 4th, 2018|Prayer|5 Comments

Monday Motivation – Isaiah 61:11

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When you purchase any Master’s Hand Collection item, 10 percent of all proceeds are donated to deaf ministries around the world. THANK YOU for helping to spread the gospel to this underserved community.

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By | 2018-04-02T12:01:06+00:00 April 2nd, 2018|Monday Motivation, Spring|0 Comments

Easter Bible Verses that will inspire you everyday!

Easter Bible Verses that will inspire you everyday

If you have come here looking for inspiring Easter Bible verses, you are in the right place! I pray that these verses will give you encouragement and inspiration as we prepare for this momentous holiday season.

Easter is THE Christian holiday. It represents the most important and fundamental belief of our Christian faith, the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. Without the resurrection Christianity would be pointless. But because of it we have hope of a future here on earth and in heaven with Him.

It is no small wonder that we are the only world religion that worships a living god. Jesus is alive! He has risen from the grave! Easter is the time we set aside to remember the sacrifice of our loving Savior. So let’s celebrate Him today!

Classic Easter Scriptures…

These verses are perfect for writing in Easter cards, Sunday School lessons, or reading aloud at your Easter dinner and egg hunt.

 

He is risen! He is not here.

                          Mark 16:6

 

Now if Christ is preached that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty.

                                                    1 Corinthians 15:12-14

 

He is not here; but has risen! Remember how He spoke to you, when He was still in Galilee, saying, The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and on the third day rise again.

                                                         Luke 24:6-7

 

And when they had come to a place called Golgotha, that is to say Place of the Skull, they gave Him sour wine mingled with gall to drink. But when He had tasted it, He would not drink.

Then they crucified Him, and divided His garments, casting lots, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet:

They divided My garments among them, And for My clothing they cast lots.

                                                           Matthew 27:33-36

 

to whom He also presented Himself alive after his suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen by them during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.

                                                             Acts1:3

 

Then the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was torn in two. And when Jesus had cried out with a loud voice, He said, “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.” Having said this, He breathed His last. So when the centurion saw what had happened, he glorified God, saying “Certainly this was a righteous Man!”

                                                            Luke 23:45-47

 

So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit.

                                                           John 19:30

 

And with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them.

                                                            Acts 4:33

So when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, “It is finished!” And bowing His head, He gave up His spirit. John 19:30 #Easter #BibleVersesClick To Tweet

In His Own Words: Jesus spoke about His impending death and resurrection…

There is nothing better than the words of Jesus! You just can’t improve on them. Jesus knew what was going to happen to Him, yet He still chose the cross. And to “hear” His words flow through our lives as we read them is an amazing experience.

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this?”

                                                           John 11:25

 

I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die. Do you believe this? John 11:25 #Easter #BibleVersesClick To Tweet

For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

                                                          Matthew 12:40

 

The Son of Man is about to be betrayed into the hands of men, and they will kill Him, and on the third day He will be raised up.

                                                          Matthew 17:22

 

All of you will be made to stumble because of Me this night, for it is written:

I will strike the Shepherd,

And the sheep of the flock will be scattered.

But after I have been raised, I will go before you to Galilee.

                                                          Matthew 26:31-32

 

Behold, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be betrayed to the chief priest and to the scribes; and they will condemn Him to death and deliver Him to the Gentiles; and they will mock Him, and scourge Him, and spit on Him, and kill Him. And on the third day He will rise again.

                                                           Mark 10:33-34

 

Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.

                                                          John 2:19

 

Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father.

                                                           John 10:17-18

 

Old Testament Prophecies of Jesus death and resurrection…

These scriptures plainly show how much forethought went into the coming of the Messiah and His sacrifice on the cross. Before time began God was making a way for us to be with Him. He had a plan, a plan to redeem us through His Son.

For me, these verses kick start my faith when I need it the most. When I read them, fear and doubt disappear and all that is left is the peace which surpasses all understanding. (Philippians 4:7)

 For You will not leave my soul in Sheol,

Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption.

                                                            Psalm 16:10

For You will not leave my soul in Sheol, Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption. Psalm 16:10 #Easter #BibleVersesClick To Tweet

 

For dogs have surrounded Me;

The congregation of the wicked has

enclosed Me.
They pierced My hands and My feet;

I can count all My bones.

They look and stare at Me.

They divide My garments among them,

And for My clothing they cast lots.

                                                        Psalm 22:16-18

 

And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; and they will look on Me whom they have pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn.

                                                     Zechariah 12:10

 

For I know that My Redeemer lives,

And He shall stand at last on the earth;

                                                   Job 19:25

 

He will swallow up death forever,

And the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces;

The rebuke of His people

He will take away from all the earth;

For the Lord has spoken.

                                                 Isaiah 25:8

 

But He was wounded for our transgressions,

He was bruised for our iniquities;

The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,

And by His stripes we are healed.

All we like sheep have gone astray;

We have turned, every one, to his own way;

And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.

                                                Isaiah 53:5-6

                                       

God planned the death and resurrection of Christ very carefully. Each intricate detail thought out and painstakingly put into place so that we could have complete confidence in our faith and salvation. Because of Jesus’s death we have forgiveness of sin. Because of His resurrection we have eternal life in Him. Praise the Lord, we serve a Risen and Living Savior!

Have a very happy Easter and may God bless you!

If you are not a Christian and would like to know more about what it means to accept Jesus as your Savior, please click on the Accepting Jesus tab here, or at the top of the page.

All verses have been taken from the New King James Version of the Bible.

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Did you know that only 2 percent of deaf people have “heard” the good news of Jesus?

When you purchase any Master’s Hand Collection item, 10 percent of all proceeds are donated to deaf ministries around the world. THANK YOU for helping to spread the gospel to this under served community.

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By | 2018-03-29T13:32:06+00:00 March 28th, 2018|Easter|2 Comments

Finding God’s Favor – Psalm 5:12

Finding God's Favor Psalm 5:12

It seems that lately I’ve been praying a lot and asking God to show me His favor. At times maybe even begging Him for it. But the response I got back was silence, crickets, nothing.

Then suddenly, I did get an answer. God gently told me that I already have His favor. How could this be?

You see, I’ve always thought of God’s favor as something to strive for and work towards, an elusive object just out of my reach. Finding God’s favor seemed impossible. So how is it possible that I could already have it when I didn’t try so hard to get it?

I delved deep into the scriptures and discovered a shining diamond of truth that I would love to share with you.

We all know that God’s grace and our salvation through Jesus Christ is a free gift given to those of us who believe. And we know that no matter what we do or how bad we mess up our salvation can’t be lost. But here’s the truth that God in His infinite wisdom shared with me… If we are saved by the blood of Jesus, then we already have God’s favor. Maybe this isn’t news to you, but it was to me. Maybe you already know all about God’s favor in your life and I hope that you do. But for me, this is a lesson that God wants to teach me right now.

If we are saved by the blood of Jesus, then we already have God’s favor. #GodsFavor #BibleStudyClick To Tweet

As I began to realize just how wrong I had been about God’s favor and how to obtain it, I wanted to look at exactly what His favor is and how can we find it in our lives.

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.

                                                            Ephesians 2:8-9

Of course, I knew that grace was a free gift from God and that I can’t work to get it. But somehow I thought of grace and favor as different and separate, but they are not. In fact, grace and favor are the same!

It is the blood that Jesus shed for us on Calvary that cloaks us in His righteousness. And our faith in Jesus makes us righteous in the eyes of the Father. When God looks at us He sees this righteousness covering us.

God’s favor is a gift He gives to all Christians just as His grace is. There is no amount of work that we can ever do to earn His favor. We can only graciously accept this free gift of God’s favor.

For you O Lord, will bless the righteous;

With favor You will surround him as with a shield.

                                         Psalm 5:12

This is the verse that the Lord gave to me as I prayed to understand what He meant when He said that I already have His favor. It paints a vivid picture of a warrior in battle surrounded by the protection of his shield. No arrow could find him and no man could knock him down while his shield defended him from the opposing forces.

God’s favor is like this shield in the battle of life. It surrounds us, protects us and keeps us covered by His loving embrace. Whenever we go and whatever we face God’s favor is there with us and for us.

If we want to find God’s favor in our lives, all we have to do is reach out and take it. It is not the elusive object that I once thought it was. God is there with open arms, waiting for us to grab hold of His favor. He wants to give it to us because He loves us.

This realization has changed my faith. It has renewed my heart and mind. I no longer feel like I working toward an unattainable goal. I can see clearly now that God has given me everything I need for my faith to flourish. He will bless me and surround me with His favor. And He will do the same for you! Will you reach out and find God’s favor? I truly hope so. I pray that you will be blessed by God’s grace and favor!

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By | 2018-02-28T13:32:34+00:00 February 28th, 2018|God, Grace|6 Comments

What I Learned Moving My Website from Weebly to WordPress

What I Learned Moving My Website from Weebly to WordPress

Have you ever felt like you made a huge mistake? Yeah, me too. Many times. My latest huge mistake moment came when I realized I’d picked the wrong website server.

Some time ago God had told me to build a website and blog. I immediately thought, I can’t do that, I don’t know any of that technical mumbo jumbo. But I began researching and found Weebly. It’s drag and drop interface seemed like the perfect fit for my non-technical skills.

I spent months and countless hours building my website, only to find out that I really couldn’t get anyone to see my site or read my blog posts with Weebly. It seemed that I had missed the boat and was paddling my little website into the big black sea all alone. This is when I discovered WordPress and found out that everything I needed to do in order to see my little website get going was on WordPress.

Now, I had two problems. I didn’t know how to use WordPress and I needed to figure out how to move my website over to it.

Again I did some research and found out that moving a website from Weebly to WordPress is not an easy task. That was a real gut punch. I decided I had two options, give up or figure it out. Well, I’m no quitter, especially when God has told me to do something. So, even though it seemed like an impossible task, I resolved myself to the fact that it was time to make the move.

With a lot of trepidation I began by setting up a WordPress site where I could transfer all of my Weebly stuff over. Setting up the new site was the easy part. I had 115 posts and I don’t even know how many pictures to move. I thought it would take about a week to do it. Well, it ended up taking six weeks, a lot of headaches and some shear determination. In the process I learned a lot about WordPress, and more importantly God taught me some great lessons on following Him even when it seems impossible. Here are my three big takeaways from this experience.

#1 Be Patient and Persevere

Rejoice in hope, be patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

                                                 Romans 12:12

When we think of affliction it’s usually in the physical form. Someone who has a terrible disease or debilitating disability. Although I wasn’t afflicted in a typical way, I felt I was afflicted in a mental and emotional sense. The frustration I felt grew bigger every day until I wanted to throw my computer out the window. Mentally, I thought, I just can’t do this. Emotionally, I felt drained. About half the way through I wanted to give up completely. My normal “can do” attitude was gone. But God whispered from deep inside of me, “Keep going. Don’t give up.” I knew I had to finish what I started so, I put blinders on and pressed forward. I found a rhythm, get one post transferred and then the next and the next. Still it seemed like there was no end in sight. Patience and perseverance became my only goal. Patience because it was taking so much longer than I expected. And perseverance to keep at it no matter how long or hard it got. After weeks of endless hours staring at the computer screen, I suddenly realized everything was moved and it was time to make the permanent change over to WordPress.

#2 Trust God when change is scary.

Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in you.

                                             Psalm 56:3

I don’t know when or how but during this six week period my Weebly site became a security blanket to me. It was a backup just in case a transfer didn’t take. Now it was time to delete the Weebly site and make the move permanent. All of the hard work I had put into building that site was about to disappear with one click of the mouse and my security blanket was going to be pulled out from underneath me. It was scary! I hemmed and hawed about it and walked away from the computer multiple times. Finally, after much deliberation, I decided it was now or never. I sat at the computer staring at that delete button and prayed, “Please God.” Those were the only words I had in that moment. And with that I clicked delete.

Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in you. Psalm 56:3 #BibleVerseClick To Tweet

It took some time for the new WordPress site to become active. That next day of waiting was full of stress and dread. Doubt filled my heart. What if it doesn’t work? What if I can’t fix it? But I put my trust in God and believed that He had it under control.

#3 God makes the impossible possible.

With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.

                                                 Matthew 19:26

I may have had serious doubts about my technical abilities going into this move, but I had zero doubts about God’s ability to bring about His will in my life. When I saw my new website up and running I can’t tell you how much relief I felt. God is good, always good. But it took me being obedient to Him and stepping out in faith to see the goodness of God in my life. I give God all of the credit. He did it. Without Him it would have been an impossible task for me to accomplish on my own. But with God the impossible became possible.

I know it may seem that this post is all about me, but in my heart it is all about you. I want to encourage you to seek God, persevere through the difficult times, trust Him when change is scary and see the impossible happen in your life too.

When you follow God you will never go wrong.Click To Tweet

Has God asked you to do something that seems impossible? Are you thinking of taking that leap of faith? You may feel that the deck is stacked against or that you’re facing an impossible task. But when you follow God you will never go wrong. May God bless you!

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By | 2018-02-21T11:37:07+00:00 February 21st, 2018|Bible Study, Christian Life|0 Comments

A Love Poem – 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

A Love Poem 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

Today for our weekly dose of Monday Motivation, I would like to share with you a poem my mother wrote many years ago. It’s a take on 1 Corinthians 13. This passage of scripture is something we are all familiar with. It is often read at weddings and so when we hear it our thoughts naturally turn to a romantic kind of love.

But this poem refers to the love that Jesus has for each one of us. His love is a perfect love, full of hope and forgiveness. And He freely gives this love to those of us who love Him and are called by His name.

Valentine’s Day is almost here. Some of us are looking forward to spending time with the love of our life and some of us are still looking for that special someone. No matter which camp you fall into, I pray that you will know the love of Jesus and join me in celebrating a life lived for and with Him.

God bless you and your love this Valentine’s Day!

Love
Love is patient
But is not slow
Love is kind
Much more than we know
Love is not jealous
But is God’s plan
Love is not boastful
And on it we stand
Love is not rude
But covers our sin
Love isn’t vengeful
It cleanses within
Love endures all
And Christ’s blood set us free
Love never fails
So free we will be.

written by: Charlotte Rowland

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By | 2018-02-12T15:16:19+00:00 February 12th, 2018|Love, Monday Motivation|2 Comments

Race to the Finish – 1 Corinthians 9:24-26

Race to the Finish 1 Corinthians 9:24-26

Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may obtain it. And everyone who competes for the prize is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a perishable crown, but we for an imperishable crown. Therefore I run thus: not as one who beats the air. But I discipline my body and bring it into submission, lest, when I have preached to others, I myself should become disqualified.
                                                                                          

                                                            1 Corinthians 9:24-27

During Biblical times, there was an athletic competition similar to our Olympics. The Isthmian Games where held in the city of Corinth every two years. Athletes would train hard and devote themselves completely to the Games. Then, and only then, they would be allowed to compete in an event. Along with the bragging rights of a true companion, the winner would receive a pine wreath crown. The Apostle Paul likened the life of a Christian to that of a competitor in the Isthmian Games. But instead of bragging rights and a crown of pine, after we have run the race, we receive eternal life with Jesus.

There are certain qualities that an athlete must have in order to perform at the Olympic level. And I thought it would be fun to look at some of these qualities and compare them to what we as Christians can do to perform at a top level in our walk with Christ.

First, we need a Goal.

Every athlete has a goal in mind when they practice and when they compete. Without a goal there wouldn’t be a desire to win or a reason to show up at the competition. That goal is their main focus in life and their eye is always on it. They are always in pursuit of their goal and nothing will stop them from achieving it.

Every Christian has a call from God on their life, and each of us should set our goal on that call. We should be pressing forward or deliberately pursuing that goal. Just as an athlete sets their eyes on the gold medal or a Super Bowl ring, we must set our eyes on Jesus and make sure that He is the main focus of our lives. He is what we are pressing toward. His call on our life is the goal, and nothing will keep us from getting to that goal.

Every Christian has a call from God on their life, and each of us should set our goal on that call.Click To Tweet

Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
                                                                                              Philippians 3:13-14

Second, we must work hard and show Discipline.

It takes hard work to get from the goal to the prize. We tend to think that people are born with a natural ability to be a top tier athlete. Either you have it, or you don’t. But an athlete needs discipline to reach the top of the podium. It is everyday practice and discipline that makes them able to train their bodies to perform at such a high level. Discipline makes them get out of bed every day and practice, even when their body is tired or injured. Discipline propels them forward when nothing else will. Discipline is what creates winners.

Just as an athlete needs discipline to go from a goal to the prize, we also need discipline in our daily lives. We should be training ourselves by praying, reading and mediating on God’s Word. These are some of the ways that we can work to put our faith into practice every day. When we do, God promises that we will be rewarded for our efforts and our goal will become closer and closer.

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.
                                                                                          1 Corinthians 15:58
                           
Third, we should have endurance and Perseverance.

A track runner is trained to only see the hurdle in front of them, not to look past it for the next one. They jump over the first hurdle, then move on to the next. Eventually they get to the last hurdle and then the finish line is in sight. They show perseverance through each hurdle until the race is over.

That’s how we need to be, focused on what God has put right in front of us. There will always hurdles to overcome in life and many things will distract us from our goal. At times the finish line will seem to be just out of sight. But when we have perseverance and look to Jesus, “the finisher of the faith” we will be able to run with endurance and see the finish line clearly up ahead.  

Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin that so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
                                                                                             Hebrews 12:1-2

It’s easy to feel weighted down and discouraged. When you don’t see any forward movement the finish line seems so far away. But Jesus has already won the victory for us! And when we set our goal on Him and run the race before us, we will receive everything we need to make it to that goal. We can race to the finish with confidence in our Savior Jesus Christ.

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Picture, Olympic rings made of plasma copyright Filip Susanek used under license of Dreamstime.

By | 2018-02-12T16:29:28+00:00 February 7th, 2018|4th of July, Christian Life|0 Comments

The Birth Announcement – Luke 2:11

The Birth Announcement Luke 2:11

We all love babies because they bring us so much joy. We eagerly await their arrival and when the birth announcement comes in the mail we can’t wait to hear… is it a boy or a girl, how much do they weigh, how long are they? That birth announcement becomes a keepsake that we cherish. I have the birth announcements from my family going back several generations. They hold a special place in my heart because those people are so dear to me.

It’s a joyous occasion the first time we see that baby. We take a deep breath in and smell that scent only babies have, we feel their soft skin, then count their fingers and toes.  A new life has begun. It’s an exciting moment!

But there was once another birth announcement that was even more exciting. The birth of Jesus!

For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.

Luke 2:11

The angel who made this announcement may not have told us the baby’s weight or whether or not He had a full head of hair when He was born, but we learn something much more important about the baby born in Bethlehem that day. Jesus is given three titles upon his birth, Savior, Christ and Lord. Each of these titles is important and separate.

Savior…

Jesus came to earth for the sole reason of saving us from our sin. He is the only source of salvation and the only way to the Father in heaven. Because of Him we can have forgiveness of sin and eternal life through Him.

For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.

                                                                                                Luke 19:10

Christ…

When we hear Christ, we think of it as a name, but it is a title and not a name. It means Messiah or Anointed One. There are many references to the coming Messiah, the Son of God, in the Old Testament and this angel clearly states that this baby born to us is that promised Messiah. He is special because He is the only one. There is no one else like Jesus. He alone is the Anointed One of God.

Therefore God, Your God has anointed You with the oil of gladness more than Your companions.

                                                                                            Psalm 45:7

Lord…

This title of Lord means Ruler or God. It tells us that Jesus is divine in nature. He is both man and God and will rule over creation with the Father.

For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form.

                                                                                        Colossians 2:9

These three titles define the man who would soon die on a cross for our sin. Jesus is the Savior of the world, the promised Messiah and the Ruler of all creation. Today, let’s celebrate the most important birth announcement in history, the baby Jesus!

artwork Savior by Master's Hand Collection

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By | 2018-02-04T19:48:09+00:00 December 20th, 2017|Christmas|0 Comments

God With Us – Isaiah 7:4

God With Us Isaiah 7:14

Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, a virgin will be with child and bear a son and she will call His name Immanuel.

Isaiah 7:14

Jesus has many names and titles, and within this verse we learn His name, Immanuel, which means “God with us”.

Each part of the Holy Trinity has a unique role to play with humanity. And from His name, Immanuel, we see that Jesus is the part of the Godhead come to earth.

Long before Jesus was born in a manger, Isaiah prophesied of the virgin birth and a child who would be called God with us, here on earth. In the book of Matthew we can see Isaiah’s prophesy of Immanuel fulfilled.

For that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. And she will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for it is He who will save His people from their sins.
                                                                          Matthew 1:20-21

Jesus is God with us, and He is the also the only One who saves us from our sins. It was always the Father’s plan to send the Son to die for our sin, so we could be with Him in heaven eternally.

For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
                                                                         2 Corinthians 5:21

Jesus willingly gave up His rightful place of honor in heaven, came to earth to live the perfect life that we never could and became the sacrifice for our sin. He died in our place and filled the gap between heaven and earth. If we believe in Him, we are forgiven, become righteous in the sight of God and share in the inheritance of the Son. Then, Jesus is with us from that moment on.

As He ascended back into heaven after the resurrection, Jesus gave us the greatest promise we could ever receive…

And lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.
                                                                                        Matthew 28:20

Jesus wasn’t just God with us for the short time that He was physically here on earth, He is with us right now! This is promise that we as Christians hold tight to. Once we believe in Jesus and put our trust in Him, we are no longer alone. Whatever life throws at us, Jesus promises that He is always there and He will never leave us. When times are good, He is with us and celebrates our success. When times are bad, He is there to lift us up and get us through it.

This same faith that we have in Jesus, also gives us free and full access to the Father whenever we want it. We can boldly enter the throne of grace and seek God’s face. Whatever troubles we have, we can take them directly to God because He wants to have a real and loving relationship with each one of us. That is why He gave us His only Son, Immanuel, so that we could be with Him forever.

Because of the Father’s plan for Jesus to be God with us, we can be completely confident in our faith in Jesus! He has conquered sin and has made a way for us to have eternal life. And He will keep His promise to be with us to the end of the age because He is “God with us”.

I pray that you will feel the joyful presence of Immanuel in your life this Christmas season and always!

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2 Older Posts.

Rachel Lee

12/15/2017 08:20:55 am

“By the same faith we have in Jesus, we also have free and FULL access to the Father.” Yes and Amen!
Great post! Thanks for sharing.
(visiting from Faith of Fire) 🙂

Connie from Master’s Hand Collection

12/15/2017 10:21:17 am

Hi Rachel! Thanks for stopping by. I’m so glad we’re friends and neighbors at Faith on Fire. I hope you have a blessed and Merry Christmas!

By | 2018-02-05T13:01:09+00:00 December 13th, 2017|Christmas|0 Comments

Jesus No Other Name – Acts 4:12

Jesus No Other Name Acts 4:12

​What’s the one thing you can’t live without? This question was asked of me not long ago. I know I’m supposed to say a toothbrush or something like that, but I gave it a lot of thought, and the answer became very clear to me, salvation.

Because without salvation there would be no hope, and without hope, there would be no future of an afterlife in heaven.

How can we receive salvation and the hope for a future that comes with it? Acts 4:12 makes it very clear that salvation comes from no other name than Jesus.

Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.
                                                                                       Acts 4:12

Jesus is the door that we must enter through if we want to receive the free gift of God’s grace and it is only through the blood of Jesus that we are saved. Jesus, Himself, said “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” John 14:6.

If we want to get to heaven, faith in Jesus is the one and only way to get there. But salvation is so much deeper than just getting to heaven. It is the beginning of an ongoing and lasting relationship with the one true Savior of the world, Jesus.

Jesus is the door that we must enter through if we want to receive the free gift of God’s grace and it is only through the blood of Jesus that we are saved.Click To Tweet

Because of this relationship, we can turn to Jesus in any circumstance. When life gets difficult, He is our refuge against the storm, protecting us from the wind and rain. When life is going well, He is our champion, cheering us on toward the goal He has set for us.

Jesus is always there. He is always faithful. Even when we are not.

I’m not perfect. I make mistakes and I don’t always do everything right. That’s why I need a Savior. Even though I don’t deserve it, God sent His Son to save me. Because of my faith in His Son, God has given me His grace and forgiveness of sins. He has made a way for me to spend eternity with Him. He did it because of His great love for me.

Jesus is always there. He is always faithful. Even when we are not.Click To Tweet

I’m so grateful for all that God has done. And I’m so thankful for a loving Savior who wants to have a real and meaningful relationship with me. Salvation comes from no other name than Jesus. And it is definitely the one thing I can’t live without.

For those of you who are already saved, today I pray that you will be encouraged and comforted by the name of Jesus!

For those of you who don’t know Jesus as your Savior, I pray that you will see the love that Jesus has for you. And I pray that you will find the hope in Him that is waiting for you.

To learn more about what it means to be “saved” you can find the answers about Accepting Jesus here.

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2 Older Comments.

there

12/6/2017 12:07:18 pm

Connie, your art work intrigues me. Are you a deaf interpreter?

I came up with another answer to your question. But by the end you had me convinced that Salvation is was better than my answer.

Connie from Master’s Hand Collection

12/6/2017 01:55:07 pm

Hi!
Thank you for your encouraging words. I’m not a deaf interpreter but I grew up in a church that had a deaf ministry and my childhood best friend had parents who were deaf. Sign Language has always fascinated me. My goal in creating this artwork is to share with other Christians how important it is to share the gospel with the deaf community. They are a very overlooked group of people and they need Jesus too. Thanks again and God bless!
P.S. What was your answer? What is it that you can’t live without?

By | 2018-02-12T16:27:59+00:00 December 6th, 2017|Jesus|0 Comments

Jesus Name Above All Names – Philippians 2:7-9

Jesus Name Above All Names Philippians 2:7-9

but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name. 

 Philippians 2:7-9

Recently, I was sitting in church, just going through the motions. I’ve had a lot on my mind lately and I was finding it hard to focus on the reason I was in church to begin with. Then, God spoke to my heart and gently reminded me why I was there.

Jesus is the reason. He is the One who gave His life for me and He deserves my awe! There is no one else like Jesus. He alone is the Son of God, the Savior of the world, and the Name Above All Names. He is the only One who is worthy of His title. The Father has exalted Him above all else, and I must do the same in my life!

There is no one else like Jesus. He alone is the Son of God, the Savior of the world, and the Name Above All Names.Click To Tweet

Sometimes it’s easy to forget and get caught up in the mundane things in life and lose focus. So, today I ask myself, has Jesus become common place in my life? Am I giving credit where credit is due? Am I in awe of the One who died to save me? Am I living my life in a way that brings glory to Him?

Jesus knew what he was facing when He came to earth. He knew that He would be separated from the Father as He never had been before and He knew that He would die a brutal death that was reserved for only the worst of criminals.

He could have saved Himself from such a painful death. He could have said I’m not the Son of God, I’m just the son of a carpenter and they would have let Him go. Likewise, He could have called upon all the angels in heaven to come down and defend Him and they could have easily destroyed the entire earth.

But Jesus didn’t do either of those things. Instead, He did as the Father asked. He left behind the glory of heaven, humbled Himself and became a servant. He did it for you and for me, so that we could live together with Him forever. He did it because of His great love for us! And for that sacrifice, God has exalted Him and given Him the name which is above all names. He alone is worthy of our praise!

Have you accepted Jesus as your Savior? If so, are you living your life for His glory? Today, my prayer for you, is that you will know the love of Jesus and make Him the focus of your life. May His love and peace fill your heart.

Together let’s celebrate Jesus, Name Above All Names!

Please leave a comment below and share the great things Jesus has done in your life.

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2 Older Comments.

Rebecca L Jones

11/22/2017 10:17:40 am

Such truth in your post, cares of the world, lust for other things, how easily it sneaks in on us. I love the artwork. Happy Thanksgiving.

Connie from Master’s Hand Collection

11/22/2017 11:12:02 am

Thanks so much! I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

By | 2018-03-05T19:37:29+00:00 November 22nd, 2017|Jesus|0 Comments