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How to Resist the Devil – 1 Peter 5:8

How to Resist the Devil 1 Peter 5:8

Be sober, be vigilant, because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith.

                                                             1 Peter 5:8

Are you on fire for God? If the answer is yes, chances are you’re in the crosshairs of the devil’s devious tactics. Satan’s goal is to devour and destroy Christians just like a roaring lion seeks out its prey. He is constantly setting traps for us to fall into. He knows our weaknesses and how to exploit them. And he will use every weapon in his arsenal to bring us down.

We are under attack, not just from an unbelieving world, but from our greatest foe the devil himself. Satan knows that he cannot have us because we already belong to Jesus. There is nothing he can do that will ever take us away from our Savior. (John 10:29) But Satan can turn us into ineffective Christians so that we won’t share our faith with other people who may also believe.

So, how can we resist the devil and live the life of steadfast faith God has for us? Like any military operation, if we want to successfully combat our enemy we need to understand and recognize the tactics that will be used against us. Here are just a few of the devil’s tricks…

Deception

Lying is what Satan does best. He is the father of lies, so deception is the first tactic he tries. His lies are cruel, and he knows exactly which lie will stop us in our tracks. He will tell us that we’re not good enough, that we don’t deserve it, that we can’t do it, and so many other hurtful things.

Satan wants us to fail and he will tell us whatever it takes to stop us from being effective Christians. But we don’t have to listen to Satan’s lies and we certainly don’t have to believe them.

He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.

                                                                1 John 4:4

While Satan delights in deception, Jesus delights in salvation!  We can resist Satan’s lies and fight back by knowing the truth. Jesus has already defeated the forces of evil! Our Savior is greater than any enemy we face! And we are already victorious because of Him!

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Temptation

Temptation is everywhere. Some temptation is just from being human, like eating that extra piece of cake. But some temptation is more sinister and comes from our enemy, the devil.

Thankfully, we have this promise from our faithful and loving God…

No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, that you may be able to endure it.

                                                               1 Corinthians 10:13

Temptation will always be around us. But God promises us a way out and the strength to bear up under it.

Discouragement

Satan wants us to be discouraged and he does that by reminding us of our past sins. He will make us feel defeated and like we are already a failure before we’ve even begun. Whether we are sharing our faith, getting ready to go on a mission trip or just going about our day, Satan will try to discourage us from doing what God has asked of us.

For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.

                                                                  Hebrews 8:12

Satan may remind us of our sin, but God doesn’t. God not only forgives our sins, He forgets them. He doesn’t bring them up again and He doesn’t use them against us. So, when discouragement from Satan threatens to take hold of us, we can turn to God and find His love, mercy, and forgiveness.

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Distraction

“If Satan can’t make you bad, he’ll make you busy.” Adrian Rogers

Distraction is one of Satan’s most effective tactics because it doesn’t look like an attack on the surface. Instead of telling us to do bad things, he’ll create a long list of distractions for us to deal with. These distractions come in many forms. But they are all meant to steal away our time from furthering God’s kingdom, even if it is only for a little while.

Satan is very good at keeping us running around in circles simply for the sake of busyness. He knows that if we’re too busy cleaning up the mess he made, we won’t have time for what God has for us. Sometimes, he will even use good things to distract us from God’s plan. If we say yes to a project that a coworker or friend wants us to do, then we might find ourselves too busy to spend time connecting with God and making His plan a priority in our lives. These distractions are harder to deal with because we don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings. Satan knows that too and uses our kindness against us.

No matter what distraction the devil throws at us, we have a weapon to defeat it, the stillness of knowing God.

Be still and know that I am God.
Psalm 46:10

Busyness and stillness are opposites just like Satan and God. If Satan can cause us to be busy, then we can’t experience the peaceful stillness that comes from time with God.

But if we see that our time is being stolen by the enemy, we can stop him by saying no to his distractions. We can choose still instead of frantic.

Therefore submit yourself to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
                                                                James 4:7

These are some of the many tactics that Satan uses against us. We can successfully learn how to resist the devil by recognizing his devious tricks. And by knowing God’s truth and submitting ourselves to Him. Then Satan will have no choice but to flee from us.

Stay steadfast in the faith, my friend!

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How the Trinity Helps Us – Romans 8:26-27

How the Trinity Helps Us Romans 8:26-27

Life is going great, until it isn’t anymore. An unforeseen catastrophe hits you out of the blue and leaves you feeling blindsided. You don’t know what to do or where to turn.

But there is help on the horizon if we know where to look. As Christians, the help we are looking for comes from the Trinity. God knew that we would face hard times and He has not left us alone to face the crisis by ourselves. When we understand how each part of the Trinity helps us in our trouble, we can overcome any curve ball life throws at us.

Holy Spirit

Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weakness. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Holy Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is because he makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.
                                                                                   Romans 8:26-27

We know we should pray. But there are times when the hurt is too deep and the crisis so overwhelming, that words just don’t come. We’ve all been there and that feeling of helplessness can leave us paralyzed. But this is when the Holy Spirit takes over and prays for us. On our behalf, the Holy Spirit approaches, God the Father, and seeks His will for our lives. This is the gift that Jesus gave to us, the Holy Spirit, as our Helper and Counselor. When we no longer have the strength to pray and the words don’t come, the Spirit does it for us.

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Jesus, the Son

It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us.
                                                                                   Romans 8:34

When Jesus died on the cross, our forgiveness of sin was secured. But now, as our risen Savior, He is seated at the right hand of the Father interceding on our behalf. Every day it seems that there is a new crisis in my life to conquer. And sometimes it leaves me feeling just plain worn out! So, when hard times hit and I feel weak, there is nothing more encouraging than to know that my Savior is interceding for me right now!

It is Christ who died, and furthermore is also risen, who is even at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us. Romans 8:34 #JesusChrist #BibleVerseClick To Tweet

God the Father

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.
                                                                                  2 Corinthians 1:3-4

God the Father is the source of our comfort. He is not blind to our plight. He knows our hearts and He sees our pain. God wants to comfort us and show us His mercy when we are hurt or troubled by the circumstances of life. When we go through hardship we learn a lot about God’s compassion for us. Then, when we see other people who are facing similar circumstances, we are able to comfort them.

When we are hurt, weak, or feel like we can’t go on anymore, the Trinity is there to comfort us, intercede on our behalf, and pray for us when we are not able to. They are the place for us to turn to for strength when our strength is not enough. The love that the Trinity has for us is undeniable! No matter what you are facing today, the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are on your side. They will help you.

This is my prayer for you today…

The amazing grace of the Master, Jesus Christ, the extravagant love of God, the intimate friendship of the Holy Spirit, be with all of you.

2 Corinthians 13:14 (MSG)

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How to Celebrate Deaf Awareness Week as a Hearing Person

How to Celebrate Deaf Awareness Week As a Hearing Person

Did you know… September is International Deaf Awareness Month? And the last week of September is International Week of the Deaf, also known as Deaf Awareness Week?

Most of us, myself included, are hearing. So, we may not give a lot of thought to this special time of year and the important cause it celebrates. But there are a few things we can do to celebrate Deaf Awareness Week as a hearing person and bring awareness to the amazing people it represents.

First, can we agree as Christians, it’s important for us to show the love of Jesus to everyone we meet? I thought you’d be on board for that one! 😊

And second, let’s agree that each and every person on the planet is created in God’s image and extremely important to Him. I know you’ll agree to that one too!

But here’s where it gets a little dicey, ya’ll.

Most hearing people ignore the deaf.

I’ve never understood why.

Maybe it’s a fear of looking foolish, or an overwhelming feeling of awkwardness, or worrying we won’t be able to overcome the language barrier and understand the other person, or a million other excuses we come up with on the fly.

Whatever the true reason is, it’s not okay to treat people like they’re invisible.

That’s not how Jesus treated us when we needed a Savior. And it’s not how He wants us to treat anyone else, whether they’re hearing or deaf.

When I was growing up, I had the chance to witness how the deaf are treated in society first-hand.

My best friend’s parents were both deaf. They were great people, loving, kind, and would do anything for their kids and their kid’s friends. I loved spending time with their family. Her mom had a gentleness about her I can’t put into words and a real knack for making me feel welcome and special. That was a big part of why I loved being with them, cuz who doesn’t want to feel special, right? Plus, I loved watching my friend sign for her mom. It was awesome! And it’s one of the reasons I fell in love with sign language in the first place. Those childhood memories still hold a special place in my heart. They always will.

But there was a dark side to those times too. I remember very well how the other moms treated my friend’s mom. They chose not to see the loving, sweet person she was. To them, she was an outsider, someone to shun, and toss aside at football games and PTA meetings. All because she was deaf.

Thankfully, my mom taught me better. Not by her words, but by her actions. She loved my friend’s mom with the love of Jesus. So, she made a point of sitting with her at those football games, buddying up with her at PTA meetings, writing notes back and forth with her for hours. Basically, just being the kind of friend we all want to have. Not because she had to, but because she wanted to.

That doesn’t seem like such a big deal, does it? But to someone who is ignored on a regular basis, being treated like a friend instead of an outcast can mean all the difference in the world.

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This story plays out in my mind whenever I’m with someone who is deaf. Because no matter what I may feel on the inside (fear, anxiety, not measuring up when it comes to my sign language skills), I never want to treat someone the way my friend’s sweet mother was treated.

And I’m sure as a loving follower of Christ, you feel the same way too!

So, with that in mind, let’s look at how to celebrate Deaf Awareness Week as a hearing person.

 #1 Show the love of Jesus

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.

                                                                 John 13:34-35

 

If we’ve learned anything from following Jesus, it’s to open our hearts to different kinds of people and to show His love to all of them. That includes the deaf. And this week’s celebration of deaf culture is the perfect time to give it a go.

Don’t worry, it’s not hard to follow this command from Jesus. And it’s even okay if you don’t know sign language. You can still talk to someone who is deaf in other ways. Most can read lips, but if they can’t, all you need to do is pull out your phone and use the text function. Super simple. 😊

Remember, it’s about showing the love of Jesus to someone who needs Him in their life. So, when all else fails, a big smile and a little kindness go a long way!

                           

#2 Donate to Deaf Charities

 

So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.

                                                              2 Corinthians 9:7

Whether it’s our money, time, or talent, we all have something to give.

Maybe you’ll never cross paths with someone who is deaf. But you can still make a difference in the life of someone who needs Jesus. Wycliffe Bible estimates that only 2% of deaf people worldwide have “heard” of Jesus. That’s a sad number, and one we as Christians shouldn’t forget about.

God has blessed us with so much, Amen?! In return, He asks us to give of ourselves for His glory. So, please consider donating to a charity that is making an impact on the deaf community for Christ.

Here are a few worthy candidates to think about…

Your local church with a deaf ministry. Google them, because they are always in dire need of funds and volunteers.

Deaf Bible Society

This amazing organization is working to translate the Bible into every sign language. Yes, there’s more than one! And the people who know sign language as their first language need these translations ASAP.

DOOR International

Both church planting and Bible translation are at the heart of DOOR’s ministry. They believe in a “Deaf reaching Deaf for Christ” philosophy that is evident in their outreach to the deaf community worldwide.

 

#3 Pray

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

Prayer is our most precious resource in a world that doesn’t understand the love of Jesus. And we can have complete confidence that when we pray God not only listens, He responds. It’s the single greatest thing we can do for those who are not saved, including the deaf.

So, set aside some time during this special week to pray for the 98% of deaf people who don’t know Jesus as their Savior. Ask God to give them an understanding of who He is and how much He loves them. And pray for God to meet their needs far above all we could ask or comprehend.

#4 Buy Master’s Hand Collection Printables

 

I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.

                          Isaiah 41:10

Master’s Hand Collection brings the artistry of sign language and the truth of God’s hand reaching down from heaven to save us into sharp focus. Through the sales of this inspiring artwork, I promise to fulfill God’s purpose for my life by donating 10% of profits to one of the charities mentioned above. (Currently, I’m donating to a local deaf church, Bethel Deaf Fellowship) And when you purchase one or more of these Printables from Master’s Hand Collection you can be sure I’m in the fight right alongside of you to bring Jesus front and center in our lives and the deaf community. Every. Single. Day!

Together, let’s face the fear and awkwardness of sharing the gospel with the deaf community. Let’s jump straight into the fire knowing these wonderful people need Jesus too. Cuz, that’s how we celebrate Deaf Awareness Week as a hearing person the right way!

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Heartwarming Bible Verses for Fall

Heartwarming Bible Verses for Fall

Fall is my favorite season! I look forward to this brief moment of splendor God blesses us with each year. The cool, crisp weather. The brilliant red, yellow and orange colors of the leaves. Comfy sweaters and festive scarfs. Spicy pumpkin pie and gooey apple cobbler. Everything about fall warms my heart and brings happy memories to mind.

Fall also marks the end of the carefree days of summer. And as we reestablish our routines, it’s a great time to connect with God on a deeper level.

Each of these Heartwarming Bible Verses for Fall stands on their own. But they are also a great jumping off point for a new Bible Study, a wonderful start to creating a seasonal bulletin board at church or a way to teach the children in your life a new memory verse. Whatever your reason for searching for Fall Bible Verses, I pray you will find inspiration for the season ahead.

So, wrap your hands around the warmth of a mug of pumpkin spiced coffee, or the hot drink of your choice, and savor these Heartwarming Bible Verses for Fall. Enjoy!

In the Psalms

The Psalms are always the perfect place to find inspiration. Their cries of praise and thanksgiving for a loving God start off our fall Bible verses.

Enter His gates with thanksgiving
And His courts with praise.
Give thanks to Him, bless His name.

                                      Psalm 100:4

 

Oh give thanks to the Lord, for He is good,
For His lovingkindness is everlasting.

                                     Psalm 107:1

 

He made the moon for the seasons;
The sun knows the place of its setting.

                               Psalm 104:19

 

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In the Psalms

In the words of Jesus

There is nothing more powerful than the words of Jesus! And His assessment of the fall season gives us a great lesson in what it means to be a witness all year round.

Jesus said to them, My food is to do the will of Him who sent Me and to accomplish His work.

                                   John 4:34

 

Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few.

                                 Matthew 9:37

 

Do you not say, ‘There are yet four months, and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look on the fields, that they are white for harvest.

                                  John 4:35

 

Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.

                               John 12:24

 

For the Season

These scriptures are favorites for a reason. They speak to the honest truth of the season and help us focus our minds on what is truly important this time of year.

in everything give thanks; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

                               1 Thessalonians 5:18

 

And the seed whose fruit is righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

                                 James 3:18

 

They are clouds without water, carried about by the winds; late autumn trees without fruit, twice dead, pulled up by the roots;

                                 Jude 12

 

‘They do not say in their heart,
“Let us now fear the Lord our God,
Who gives rain in its season,
Both the autumn rain and the spring rain,
Who keeps for us
The appointed weeks of the harvest.”

                               Jeremiah 5:24

 

I hope these Heartwarming Bible Verses for Fall have blessed you and inspired you for the season ahead. Happy Fall!

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Living the Life of Job -Job 19:25

Living the Life of Job Job 19:25

For I know that my Redeemer lives.
                                Job 19:25

A few years ago, God told me that I would live the life of Job. Now, that’s a pretty big pill to swallow! And if I’m completely honest, I wasn’t thrilled with the news. No one wants the life of Job, because everything he had was taken from him.

True to His word, God has followed through on His “life of Job” promise to me. I have faced many trials in my life. Loved ones have been taken from me either through death or through broken relationships, my livelihood has diminished, my health has suffered and my faith has been tested.

I can see the parallels between Job’s life and mine. And I find myself referring back to the book of Job for inspiration often. With everything that Job went through, it would’ve been easy for him to curse God as his wife told him to and no one would have blamed him for it. (Job 2:9) But Job trusted God and refused to curse Him no matter what circumstance God placed him in. When everything seemed lost, Job said, “The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; Blessed be the name of the Lord.” (v. 1:21) This kind of resolute belief Job had, inspires me to get up, keep moving forward and remain faithful to God no matter what circumstance I’m in.

God has allowed my faith to be tested, just as He allowed Job’s to be tested. But He didn’t do it to hurt me. He did it to bless me and teach me the lessons I need to know as I move forward in my life. And with each trial and lesson God has shown me His plan and will for my life in a way I couldn’t see before.

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Proverbs 17:3 says “The refining pot is for silver and the furnace for gold, but the Lord tests the hearts.” God allows us to go through trials and He tests our hearts. But He doesn’t do it as some kind of punishment. He knows what is ahead and He is preparing us for it. He is refining us like silver or gold, melting us down to our core, taking the impurities out of our lives and leaving us with all of the good that He has in store for us.

Yes, Job faced many hardships and he was tested. But the lesson that I take away from reading the book of Job is not one of defeat. It’s a story of great faith and triumph over adversity. Through it all, God was there right next to him. He never left Job. He was Job’s mediator and ultimately his redeemer.

The lesson that I take away from reading the book of Job is not one of defeat. It’s a story of great faith and triumph over adversity. #Devotional Click To Tweet

By sending Jesus to die for our sins, God has given us a redeemer and mediator. Right now, this very moment, He is seated at the right hand of God interceding on our behalf. (Romans 8:34) When we face trials and our faith is tested, we can have complete confidence that Jesus is still there, in the fight with us.

It’s been a few years now that I’ve been living the life of Job. It’s been a hard path, full of unexpected twists and turns. But, when it seems that the world is against me, I can take comfort in knowing that Jesus is always for me. No matter what comes my way, I can face the future with confidence because… I know my Redeemer lives!

If you are facing a trial in your life today, I pray that you will turn to Jesus and trust in Him. He loves you and wants to refine you like the silver and gold that you are. To find out more about Accepting Jesus as your Savior, click on this link or go to the Accepting Jesus tab above. Cast your cares on Him, because He cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7) God bless!

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Living Water – John 4:10

Living Water John 4:10

Is the summer heat making you feel thirsty, tired or maybe even a little burnout? Are you yearning for a cool drink of Living Water?

It seems like summer has flown by fast, but August is just beginning. And that means soaring temperatures are still in the forecast, at least for a little while longer. So, as the mercury continues to rise, we look for ways to keep the heat at bay. We know the drill…stay inside with the AC on when possible, wear sunscreen when we go outside, and most importantly drink plenty of water. If we don’t, we just might find ourselves lacking the proper hydration and in need of some serious refreshment.

August is also the time when our thoughts turn to all of the obligations the coming fall season will bring. Our lives are about to heat up with the new school year, work, family and friends, church activities and so much more. Honestly, it’s a lot to handle. With each new thing we add to our list, we pour a little more water out of our figurative cup. Before we know it, we’re caught in the day to day feeling spiritually dehydrated with a cup that has run completely dry. We feel depleted and crave spiritual refreshment. Or as the psalmist so beautifully puts it…

 

My soul longs for You like a thirsty land.  Psalm 143:6

and

 As the deer pants for the water brooks, So pants my soul for You,       O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.  Psalm 42:1

These two verses speak so eloquently to the craving of a thirsty soul, searching for what will restore and renew. So, the question becomes, how can we fill ourselves with Living Water every day? The good news is, we don’t have to look far to find it. Here are three tips to stave off spiritual thirst when life gets too hot.

 

#1 Go directly to the Source.

“If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, ‘Give Me a drink,’ you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water.” 

“Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again;  but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life.”

                                                          John 4:10; 13-14

Close to where I live, there is a quaint little town called Eureka Springs. It’s a beautiful place located in the majestic Ozark Mountains. It began as place of refuge for the sick. People in Victorian times believed that the many natural springs in the area had healing properties and would go directly to the water source to be healed. Today, the springs are still flowing, they can’t be stopped. And people still flock to the town to bathe in their natural waters.

This is how I see Jesus, He is the source of living water in our lives. He has the power to heal whatever ails us. And He is like one of these natural springs. An unending flow of living water springing up and a force of nature that cannot be stopped. The deep spiritual thirst inside of us can only be quenched by knowing Him. So, He offers us the gift of living water which is eternal life. And it’s not just a little drip every now and then, through Him we have an unlimited amount of living water springing up directly from the source and flowing through us.

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#2 Draw from the wells of salvation.

Therefore with joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.

                                                            Isaiah 12:3

 

Digging a well is no small feat. You’ve got to get in there and dig down, deeper and deeper until you find the water shelf where the fresh water lies. But once you hit pay dirt, the well is there for you to draw from every day.

When our lives become like a barren wasteland, we thirst for the joy of our salvation. And sometimes we have to dig deep to find it. But the wells of salvation have already been dug for us, all we have to do is draw the water from them.

#3 Drink the Water.

“If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.”

                                                          John 7:37-38

Our physical bodies need drinking water every day to survive. Without it we become thirsty and parched. Then, we get cranky and cotton mouthed. Eventually, we will die. That kind of thirst is a terrible thing. And in the middle of a crisis like that nothing could possibly taste better than a tall, ice cold glass of water.

As much as our bodies need water to survive, our spiritual selves need living water every day to flourish. Without it we will wither away. But we don’t have to thirst because our belief in the Son of the living God creates rivers of living water that flow out of our hearts. Faith is the key to keeping our cups full. In the midst of our thirst, Jesus calls out to us, “come to Me and drink.” There is no need to thirst or want. He is there ready to pour living water into our empty cup and fill it full to the brim, renewing our spirits and refreshing our minds.

I truly hope and pray that you will be blessed by these scriptures as you drink the Living Water of Jesus. Have a happy and safe rest of the summer!

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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.

May God bless you greatly!

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By |2020-08-24T13:45:29-05:00August 24th, 2020|Christian Life, Jesus|6 Comments

How to Overcome Doubt – Matthew 14:31

How to Overcome Doubt Matthew 14:31

O you of little faith, why did you doubt?
                                     Matthew 14:31

Doubt is a dirty word in Christian circles. It’s something we don’t talk about just in case the pastor is listening. And we pretend that we don’t feel it because we think our friends will look down on us if we admit it. But the truth is, we all have doubt. Every single one of us. I have doubt, and I bet you do too. Having doubt doesn’t mean we are bad or that we don’t love Jesus. It just means that we’re human. Because it’s human nature to doubt what we can’t see. We think if we can’t touch it or hold it in our hand, then maybe it’s not real. Sometimes doubt is just a fleeting thought. It comes to us in an instant and leaves just as quickly. But other times doubt lingers. It plays tricks with our mind, tears us apart on the inside, and robs us of our joy.

Before we go into how to overcome doubt, let’s look at where it comes from. If we can understand the source of our doubt, we can easily quiet it when it comes calling.

#1 Satan

All Christians have an enemy in Satan. He seeks to destroy us and doubt is one of the many tactics he uses against us. He will search for a way into our lives to achieve his goal of utterly demolishing us. Once he has found a way in, He is relentless in his attack. He will slink in, like the snake he is, and put doubt in our minds leaving us feeling hopeless. Then slink off again to look for some other poor soul to terrorize. But we don’t need to fear Satan or listen to his lies. Jesus has already defeated him. However, we need to be mindful of his plan to place doubt in our hearts and minds and learn to recognize his devious actions.

#2 Outside Sources

We are called to live in the world but not of it. But sometimes living in the world leaves us vulnerable to doubt. These outside sources are the things of this world that distract us. They could be the people we surround ourselves with, the things we read or watch on TV, social media, etc. Anything we put into our minds can cause doubt to form if we allow it to influence our thoughts.

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#3 Ourselves

Sometimes our doubt is much closer to home than we would like it to be. At times, we can be our own worst enemy. Our view of ourselves can leave us feeling like we’re not good enough or that we’re a failure. These negative thoughts can cause doubt to creep into our minds if we allow them to take hold.

God, in His infinite wisdom, knows the innermost workings of our minds. He knows we have doubt and He knows that we wonder where He is when everything goes wrong in our lives. He understands our hearts and He has not left us alone to face doubt on our own. We can recognize what causes doubt and quickly overcome it with one simple God-given tool…our Faith!

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
                                                                                     Hebrews 11:1

In Matthew 14:31, Jesus said to the disciples, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?”  The disciples had been with Jesus and they saw Him perform miracle after miracle. They had the unique opportunity of being an eye witness to the ministry of the Savior and they still had doubt!

At some point, each of us made the decision to give our lives to Christ because the Holy Spirit showed us the truth of who Jesus is. Unlike the disciples, we have not physically witnessed the miracles of Jesus. But we know for a fact that God is real and that Jesus is the Son of God because of our faith. We may not be able to reach out and touch God or witness the miracles of Jesus with our own eyes, but we can see what He has done in our lives, around us and for us. We have seen the hand of God at work. This is the evidence of our faith. When doubt enters our minds, we can remember those times when we were so close to God it did feel like we could touch Him. If we look around we will see His goodness surrounding us.

So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
                                                                                        Romans 10:17

When we become firmly grounded in God’s truth, doubt will no longer have a hold on us. #GodsWord #BibleStudyClick To Tweet

We have the most powerful weapon on earth at our disposal, God’s Word. Faith comes by hearing the word of God and understanding the truth within it. We can grow our faith by reading the Bible and storing it in our heart. When we become firmly grounded in God’s truth, doubt will no longer have a hold on us. Instead of allowing doubt to destroy us, we can simply turn to the Scriptures and lean on the promises of God to get us through. Because God’s word is real!

Immediately the father of the child cried out and said with tears, “Lord I believe, help my unbelief!”
                                                                                        Mark 9:24

Lord I believe, help my unbelief! Mark 9:24 #BibleVerseClick To Tweet

This is a prayer of a man who had doubt in his heart but still wanted to believe. It’s an honest and heartbreaking cry to the only One who could help him in his suffering. We all know how he felt because we’ve been there, on our knees begging God to help us in our pain and unbelief. When doubt creeps in, we have a direct line to God. We can shoot up a prayer to Him in a second and ask Him for strength and guidance.

The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
                                                                                         James 5:16

Our prayers are not effective because we have great faith or because we are faithful to God. They are effective only because we are righteous through our belief in Jesus. This is our promise from God… He is always faithful to us and He will hear our prayers when we call out to Him.

Yes, we all have doubt, but doubt doesn’t have to keep us from experiencing the loving touch of God’s hand in our lives. It’s okay to have questions. And it’s okay to ask God to help us when we doubt. But we cannot afford to let doubt penetrate our minds and our souls. We must recognize it for what it is and stop it in its tracks. Our faith is the tool that helps us to overcome our doubt and seek God’s face in times of need. So today, I pray that each one of us will turn away from doubt, seek the Father, and grow our faith in Jesus. God bless!

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By |2020-08-17T15:02:40-05:00August 17th, 2020|Christian Life, Hope|2 Comments

4 Easy Steps to Peace of Mind – Isaiah 26:3

4 Easy Steps to Peace of Mind Isaiah 26:3

We all want peace of mind. And we all want to feel like we have stability and a safety net just in case we need it. But peace of mind is a mystery that few of us have figured out. It seems like we are always in the pursuit of it and somehow, peace of mind eludes us. Instead of peace and tranquility, our lives are filled with turmoil and stress. Maybe that’s because we are looking for peace in the wrong places. The world tells us that peace of mind comes from money and success. If we work harder and run ourselves ragged, maybe we will find peace of mind and some security to fall back on. If we can’t find it in our work, then we could try some crazy eastern religion, chanting, standing on one leg and putting burning, hot rocks all over our body. Maybe then we’ll see peace of mind manifest itself. And we might, just might, find a little bit of peace in these worldly things. But the peace the world offers won’t last long. As soon as another stressful event happens, we’ll be right back where we started in the first place.

But instead of turning ourselves into workaholics or new age gurus, we have another option available to us. One that will actually give us the peace of mind we’re looking for. The Bible is very clear about where peace comes from and how we can get it for ourselves. So, today instead of looking for peace in the world, let’s examine the Scriptures and find true and lasting peace of mind. Here are four easy steps to finding peace of mind in your life today.

#1 Know where peace comes from…

You will keep him in perfect peace,
Whose mind is stayed on You,
Because he trusts in you.
                                       Isaiah 26:3

Perfect peace only comes from Jesus. It’s as simple as that. If we know Jesus, then we know peace. Because He is peace itself. When we put our trust in the Prince of Peace and focus on Him continually, we will find a perfect peace that only comes from knowing Him.

Perfect peace only comes from Jesus. It’s as simple as that. #PeaceofMindClick To Tweet

#2 Understand that peace from Jesus is different…

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you, not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
                                                                John 14:27

The world says that if we want peace we will find it in ourselves, either by achieving our goals and aspirations or through other religions. This type of peace that the world gives, only takes us farther and farther away from the truth of who Jesus is and leaves us feeling empty. Things the world offers, like money and meditation only serve to distract and confuse us. But the perfect peace of Jesus is different from anything we can find on our own. It takes us directly to the heart of who He is and gives us abundant joy. The peace of Jesus takes away fear, confusion, worry and strife and gives us the safety net we are looking for. It sets our minds at ease and gives us a safe place to rest. Now, that’s a special kind of peace!  (I will both lie down in peace, and sleep: For you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety. Ps 4:8)

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#3 Give your worries to Jesus…

casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.
                                                               1 Peter 5:7

Worry is bound to catch up with us at some point. But when it does, we can take all of those anxieties to Jesus. He cares about everything in our lives. The really big, earth shattering things that cause doubt and fear to rise up inside and threaten to overtake us. And the little day to day worries that we all experience too. Whatever roadblocks are preventing us from having the peace of mind we desire, Jesus wants to hear about it and lift that burden from us. So, take your worries to Him because He cares for you.

#4 Let peace rule your heart…

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts…
                                                                Colossians 3:15

Sometimes we stand in the way of our own peace of mind. We can allow stress to rule our lives without even realizing it. But once we make the choice to let the peace of Christ rule our hearts and minds, He takes over and shows us a peace that we never knew existed before. The stress of day to day life and the overwhelming turmoil we face no longer affects us. Not because these things don’t happen anymore, they do. But those stresses don’t threaten to derail us anymore because we have the peace of Christ within us. If we let it, the peace of Jesus will fill our hearts to the brim!

Peace of mind may seem elusive. But if we know where to look, we can easily find it. #PeaceofMindClick To Tweet

Peace of mind may seem elusive. But if we know where to look, we can easily find it. Instead of running around from place to place in an endless search, we can choose to focus on the One who can bring peace into our lives for good. We can simply be in the presence of Jesus and experience His perfect and lasting peace. Because real peace comes from knowing Him. If you are looking for peace of mind today, I pray that you will turn to the Prince of Peace and allow Him to fill your heart with peace, love and joy. May God bless you!

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2 Older Comments. (These comments cannot be replied to, but you are welcome to leave your thoughts in the Comments section below.)

sue

8/23/2017 01:48:19 pm

It’s so true that it’s often ME that gets in the way of peace – God’s way is peace and I need to get in His way. Beautiful work and words and ministry!

Connie from Master’s Hand Collection

8/23/2017 02:49:42 pm

Hi Sue! Thanks for your words of encouragement. I agree, it’s usually me who gets in the way of my peace too. I’m saying a prayer for you today, that you will be filled with the peace of Christ. God bless!

By |2020-08-17T12:31:03-05:00August 12th, 2020|Peace|1 Comment

Because of Grace – 2 Corinthians 12:7-10

Because of Grace 2 Corinthians 12:7-10

This past week my faith was put to the test.  And I’m sad to say that I stumbled and fell. In fact, I face-planted. It was an epic fail!

My family has been planning a big renovation on our front porch for a while now. I knew that this project was going to be bigger than some others we have done in the past. And I knew that it would require a lot of time and physical labor. Because we usually do all of the work ourselves, I wanted to have everything else done and be able to concentrate all of my efforts on the porch reno. As the time to start the project grew closer, I began making preparations for it. I managed to get the laundry caught up, the meals planned and groceries bought, my blog post written and anything else I could think of.

But there was one thing I couldn’t foresee coming my way. Right in the middle of the porch reno, I started to get bug bites all over my body. They were small and itchy and more and more of them showed up every day. We had a flea infestation on our hands! I couldn’t understand why this was happening. We don’t have any pets right now and we treated the yard for bugs like we do every summer. But here I was, covered in flea bites from head to toe. It was awful and we’ve never had anything like this happen before. I was at a loss as to what to do.

I really didn’t want to take the time to deal with it. But it reached critical mass about three days into the reno and I realized I had no choice but to stop and deal with this distraction. Since I was waking up with new bites every morning, we thought that the majority of the fleas were coming from my bed. So, after reading online about how to get rid of my unwanted house guests, we bought some flea powder and sprinkled it all over the bed. The instructions on the powder said to let it sit for a while so went back to work on the porch. We spent the next few hours out in the heat, tearing up the front porch and peering up the joist boards.

Honestly, by the time we came in to vacuum up the flea powder, I was hot, sweaty, itchy and tired. I was really spent. But I couldn’t lay down and rest with all of that flea powder on the bed, so I started sweeping it up. My mind began to wonder, and all I could think about was how miserable I felt. It started as a simple thought, “thanks a lot God, I really needed this right now!” Immediately I regretted that thought. And immediately I wanted to take it back. But there it was, for God to hear. That thought took hold of me and filled me with shame and regret.

This one moment of weakness had made me question my faith. Not because of God, but because of me. If I was so weak that I couldn’t get through this little bump in the road, then how could I ever be an effective witness for Christ?

But God reminded me, I’m not saved because of anything that I have ever done or will ever do. I don’t have that kind of power. I am saved because of grace. Period.

God is good, isn’t He? I turned to Him and asked for forgiveness. He took the shame and regret that consumed my mind and replaced it with this verse from 2 Corinthians. I’ve been thinking about this verse last few days.

And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
                                                                     

                                                                                                                          2 Corinthians 12:7-10

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The apostle Paul was arguably the greatest Christian to ever live. Yet, he needed God’s grace in his life too. He stumbled and felt weak. But when times were tough, he didn’t give up the faith. He persevered and turned to God for strength. As I prayed, these words Paul wrote so many years ago, became the beacon of hope that helped me get back up and continue on in the faith.

“lest I be exalted above measure”
Maybe I needed to be knocked down so that God could lift me back up. I definitely needed some perspective on the situation. It’s not as bad as I had made it out to be. God has seen me through worse than a few fleas, much worse.

“a messenger of Satan to buffet me”
I knew that Satan was the one tripping me up. He was waiting for a time when he could sneak in and kick me while I was down. I had been on the lookout for him, but he chose his time perfectly. Because in my weakness, I let my guard down. In that moment I felt like he had won. But he did not win. And he will never win. Because I belong to Jesus and no one can ever change that!

“My strength is made perfect in weakness”
My weakness was on display in my heart that day. I let it get the best of me. But as Paul said, “When I am weak, then I am strong.” There is so much I can’t do on my own and I need Jesus to give me His strength. In those times, I’m so glad that His strength is made perfect in my weakness.

“My grace is sufficient for you”
My salvation comes from God’s power and the saving grace of Jesus, and nothing else. He has saved me because I can’t save myself. It’s God’s grace that gives me the ability to move past this moment of weakness and find strength to persevere. Because His grace is more than enough to see me through.

I never would have thought that something as small as a flea could test my faith in such a big way. While the renovation and the fight against the fleas is not over, my faith is still intact. And after taking time to reflect, I realize… I may have had an epic fail, but God’s grace is more powerful than any moment of weakness. He is always faithful to forgive and restore me to His love and grace just as He promises. And He will do the same for you.

If your faith is being testing or, like me, you’ve had an epic fail, I pray that you will be comforted by the words of 2 Corinthians. And that you will know God’s grace is sufficient for you. He will see you through it, because of grace.

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By |2020-08-17T12:33:17-05:00August 5th, 2020|Christian Life, God, Grace|0 Comments

The Path Of Life – Psalm 16:11

The Path of Life Psalm 16:11

Do you ever ask yourself “how did my life turn out this way”?

When we graduate from high school or college we’re just fresh-faced kids ready to conquer the world. We decide on the path we want our lives to take and start down it thinking only good things will come our way. Then, somewhere along that path, life takes an unexpected turn. The next thing we know, we’ve ended up in no man’s land and we’re left wondering what the heck happened. All of those plans we made for ourselves seem so far away and that fresh-faced kid is just a distant memory. We’ve veered off the path.

David had one of these “how did my life turn out this way?” moments too.

You will show me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
                                      Psalm 16:11

When this psalm was written, David found himself in a precarious situation. His life had taken an unexpected turn for the worst. The young kid who started out as a meek shepherd and then became a celebrated hero when he defeated Goliath was on the run. David was hiding out in the wilderness because King Saul and his army were looking to kill him. They had caught up with David and had encircled around him. Death seemed imminent.

Many of David’s psalms talk about the feeling of enemies surrounding him and he must have been scared knowing that they were out there. But instead of sitting around being scared and wondering what happened, David trusted God to show him the path of life. He had experienced both the highs and lows of living a life for God. And he believed that God would take care of him at this critical time. Even at his lowest David could still praise God and experience the joy of being in His presence because he understood that joy, real joy comes from knowing God.

Even at his lowest David could still praise God and experience the joy of being in His presence. #Joy #BibleStudy Click To Tweet

But David’s psalm is more than just a lament about his own circumstances, he was pointing the way for us to the coming Messiah, the true path of life.

Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.
                                                           Matthew 7:13-14

It doesn’t matter what our previous plans were, or the disappointment we felt when they didn’t work out. That path we chose for ourselves when we were young was about this life and what we would become in it. But God is more concerned with what will become of us in the next life. So He gave us a path of life. Jesus is that path, a path to eternal life. And this verse is our roadmap to Him.

You may have noticed that Jesus only gave us two choices on the path. We’ve reached that critical point in the journey where the road forks off and only goes in two directions. We must turn one way or the other to continue on and it’s an important decision worthy of serious consideration. We can either, turn left and enter through the wide and easy path. This is the worldly path that offers pleasure in this life but ultimately leads to hell and eternal destruction. Or, we can turn right and enter through the narrow and difficult path that leads to eternal life in heaven with Jesus.

Jesus said that most people will choose the wide and easy path. These people are just going through life and don’t give this decision much thought. Or they think that the choice can be put off for another time. But tomorrow isn’t promised to any of us and death may come when you least expect it. By then the choice has already been made and it’s too late.

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That’s why Jesus urges us to choose the narrow gate. He loves every one of us and He died to save us. And He wants each one of us to be the few who find the narrow gate. Yes, the narrow gate is a harder, more difficult path to take and Jesus said that we will be persecuted for our faith. But our reward is in knowing our Savior and spending eternity with Him.

Most people don’t want to hear this hard truth. Because when they do, they are forced to choose which path they will take. And just to be clear, not choosing is a choice in itself, and not a pleasant one.

The decision to follow Jesus is life-changing. And sometimes change is hard. So, if this life-changing decision is hard to make, Jesus put it another way…

I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.
                                                           John 14:6

I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. John 14:6 #BibleVersesClick To Tweet

This is a bold and clear statement. Jesus is the only way, the only truth, and the only eternal life. If we want to see the Father and end up in heaven when we die, then Jesus is the one and only way to get there. And we don’t do ourselves or anyone else any favors by saying otherwise. This is our God-given promise, if we believe in Jesus, that He is the Son of God and the Savior of the world, then we will have eternal life with Him.

For most of us, we made the choice a long time ago to follow Jesus and enter through the narrow gate. But sometimes it’s good to look back on where we’ve been and how we got here. The path behind us reminds us of everything Jesus has done for us and how far we’ve come. And the path stretched out in front of us leading the way to the Savior gives us something to look forward to.

Like David, we can experience the joy of being in God’s presence. And we can see the joy waiting for us up ahead when we’ve reached the end. This is the joy we can only find in knowing Jesus. It is a joy that fills us completely and gives us confidence in our faith. The path of life may be long and winding but with Jesus, we will get there.

Is there an event in your life that has brought you to where you are right now? Are you asking yourself “How did my life turn out this way”? If you’ve veered off the path a little bit, it’s okay. The roadmap hasn’t changed and you can still get back on the path. Jesus is waiting for you with open arms. Today, I pray that you will remember all of the reasons you gave your life to Christ and be strengthened by that decision. And I pray that you will stay firmly on the path of life and see the joy waiting for you up ahead.

If you have not made the decision to take the narrow path, then I pray that you will understand the love Jesus has for you and choose to follow Him. To find out more about making this crucial decision please read “Accepting Jesus” by clicking here or on the tab at the top of the page.

God bless!

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By |2020-08-17T12:36:03-05:00July 29th, 2020|Christian Life, Joy|8 Comments

3 Promises for Tough Times – Jeremiah 31:3-4

3 Promises for Tough Times Jeremiah 31:3-4

Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love;
Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.
Again I will build you, and you shall be rebuilt.
                                          Jeremiah 31:3-4

Tough times will come, they always do. If you’re not in a crisis right now, you can bet your bottom dollar you will be soon. That’s just life.

This is where we find Jeremiah, in the middle of a crisis. In fact, Jeremiah was in a pretty big pickle. God had given him the unenviable task of telling the people that they had failed God and He was about to unleash His wrath upon them. Ouch!

Judah was in a covenant relationship with God. They were His chosen people, yet they chose to worship the pagan god Baal. The king of Judah had been defeated in battle and now the people were the subject of Egypt. Soon, God would allow brutal Babylon to rule over them for seventy years. Yes, tough times were on the horizon for the people of Judah. But instead of turning to God for help, they chose to continue worshiping their false gods and idols.

So, God sent Jeremiah to call Judah out on their wicked ways and tell them to turn back to Him before it was too late. But they ignored Jeremiah’s warning of God’s coming judgment.

Faced with the people’s indifference to his message, Jeremiah had his own choice to make. He could go with the flow and follow the people’s lead, or he could remain faithful to God and His will. In the face of adversity and a growing defiance from the people, Jeremiah chose faith over popularity.

God remained faithful to Judah, in spite of their disobedience. He remembered His promise to restore His blessing. And because of His everlasting love, God showed His mercy on a faithless people and gave them a new covenant.

This story from Jeremiah isn’t just a piece of history from long ago. It is meant for us right here, right now! Just like Judah, sometimes we find ourselves facing tough times. And just like Jeremiah we might be in a pickle.

When tragedy strikes us close to home, it can be hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. The pain is too close and the struggle is too difficult. It’s almost impossible to see how anything in our lives can ever be right again. We’re at the crossroads and we have a choice to make. We can decide to turn our backs on God like the people of Judah. Or we can turn to God for help and rely on His promises during the tough times to come.

The Bible is filled with so many blessings and promises from God! Each one of them meant to give us hope for a better tomorrow. Within Jeremiah 31:3-4, there are three promises from God to help us in our time of need. Once we understand them, we can face any hardship with a new perspective and resolve.

#1 An everlasting love…

God loved us before time began and He still loves us now in the midst of the storm we are facing. God’s love for us is an everlasting love. It has no beginning and it has no end.

But God who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ…
                                                                Ephesians 2:4-5

God showed His mercy and demonstrated His great love for us by sending His Son to save us and give us everlasting life. Through the sacrifice of Jesus, we have the ability to experience this everlasting and unending love of God.

#God loved us before time began and He still loves us now in the midst of the storm we are facing. Click To Tweet

#2 I have drawn you…

Because of God’s lovingkindness, He stretches out His hand to us and draws us to Himself. Even when trouble surrounds us and all seems lost, God has not forgotten us. He draws close to us in our need.

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.
                                                         James 4:8

#3 Again I will build you…

Whatever hardship we have endured, whatever sin we have committed, God has promised to rebuild our relationship with Him.

You also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Christ Jesus. Therefore it is also contained in the Scripture,
Behold, I lay in Zion
A chief cornerstone, elect, precious,
And he who believes on Him will by no
means be put to shame.
                                          1 Peter 2:5-6

Free Devotional 7 Simple Ways to See God's Hand in Your Life

As Christians, we are the building project of God. He is the contractor, building a spiritual house for us to dwell in. Jesus is the chief cornerstone of the building, keeping our spiritual house from crumbling and falling to pieces. God has formed us into “living stones” to be set upon the cornerstone of Christ. Each stone is carefully and deliberately placed, making us the walls of the house firmly set on the foundation of our faith. But our sin tears down the house God is building for us. So, He forgives our sins and builds the house back up again. We are imperfect so, the building goes on and on. It is a continually building and rebuilding of our lives. And it will only be completed once we are in heaven with Him.

Jeremiah’s story is a testament of a faithful servant who endured many hardships yet followed God anyway. Today, his story stands as a reminder to us that tough times will come, but we have a loving Heavenly Father who is always faithful to the end. We may make bad choices or get knocked down, but when we make Jesus the cornerstone and main focus of our lives, we will never fail. God will honor His promises to us. He will show us everlasting love, draw us with lovingkindness and pick us up and build us again.

If you are facing tough times, I pray that you will turn to God and be encouraged by these promises. God loves you, He will draw you to Himself and He will build you again.

God bless!

artwork titled Love B&W Graphic by Master's Hand Collection

Printables from Master’s Hand Collection

Love B&W Printable Art

I created Master’s Hand Collection to inspire and encourage you in your daily walk with Jesus.  And I am excited to bring you printables featuring the art I have worked for so long to create. I pray that they will be a source of encouragement in your life.
God bless!

Love B&W Printable Card

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2 Older Comments. (These comments cannot be replied to, but you are welcome to leave your thoughts in the Comments section below.)

Bonnie Lyn Smith

9/18/2017 03:41:51 pm

Amen! So awesome to find your blog via #FaithFilledFridays! I love this! Tweeting and pinning!

Connie from Master’s Hand Collection

9/19/2017 07:26:24 am

Hi Bonnie! Thank you so much for your kind comment. I’m glad we could connect through #FaithFilledFridays . And I’m looking forward to checking out your blog. God bless!

By |2020-08-17T12:44:15-05:00July 22nd, 2020|Christian Life, God, Love|2 Comments

Bible Verses for the Fourth of July to Set You Free

Bible Verses for the Fourth of July to Set You Free

We are so blessed to call the United States of America home. The freedom we enjoy as Americans is unlike any other country.

But this freedom came at a cost. Liberty was a hard-fought victory. And the battle to keep it continues on even now.

Many of us have loved ones on the front lines and we salute them this Fourth of July. Their courage and commitment to the USA fills our hearts with pride. And we know it’s because of their bravery, we live freely.

Independence Day is also a wonderful time to reflect on a different kind of freedom we enjoy. As Christians, we have liberty in knowing Jesus as our Savior. Because of His sacrifice, we are free from the wages of sin! And we have victory over death!

So, as we celebrate the birth of our great nation, let’s read these Bible Verses for the Fourth of July to Set You Free. Each one is a gift God has given us as His children. And a reminder of what Christ has done to set us free!

Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord,
The people He has chosen as His own inheritance.

                                                   Psalm 33:12

 

Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.

                                                  Galatians 5:1

 

 For this is the will of God, that by doing good you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men— as free, yet not using liberty as a cloak for vice, but as bondservants of God. Honor all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.

                                                   1 Peter 2:15-17

 

 if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

                                                   2 Chronicles 7:14

 

For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ

                                                   Philippians 3:20

Free Devotional 7 Simple Ways to See God's Hand in Your Life

 

But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

                                                   1 Corinthians 15:57

 

 

Praise the Lord, all you nations;
extol him, all you peoples.
For great is his love toward us,
and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever.

Praise the Lord.

                                                  Psalm 117:1-2

 

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.

                                                 2 Corinthians 3:17

 

For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with,a]”>[a] that we should no longer be slaves to sin—  because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.

                                                  Romans 6:6-7

 

You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love.

                                                  Galatians 5:13

 

Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.

                                                  John 8:32

 

 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

 

                                                   John 8:36

Printable Art from Master’s Hand Collection

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By |2020-06-28T17:59:56-05:00June 28th, 2020|4th of July|2 Comments

Strong Bible Verses for Father’s Day

Strong Bible Verses for Father's Day

Father’s Day is the time we set aside to honor the man we call Dad. His strength and encouragement are paramount in our lives. And no matter how old we get, he’s the one we turn to for wisdom and guidance.

In my life, my dad has always been faithful to point me to Jesus and guide me to His truth. This source of unwavering strength has given me the resolve to push past the hard times and move forward in faith even when it seemed impossible. What a blessing it is to have a strong father who loves the Lord!

Plus, my dad and I have so many things in common. We love antiques and shopping for them together. We love old black and white movies, especially if they have Cary Grant in them. And we may not love it, but we work pretty well as a team on home repair projects.

So, as Father’s Day approaches, I wanted to share some Strong Bible Verses for Father’s Day. I hope they’ll encourage you as you think back on all the wonderful things your father has done over the years. And give you some inspiration in your relationship with him going forward.

Let’s jump right into these scriptures about Father’s Day…

 

Bible Verses about a Father’s Blessings

The father of a righteous child has great joy;
a man who fathers a wise son rejoices in him.

                                                 Proverbs 23:24

The righteous man walks in his integrity;
His children are blessed after him.

                                                 Proverbs 20:7

 

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.
Like arrows in the hand of a warrior,
So are the children of one’s youth.
Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them;
They shall not be ashamed,
But shall speak with their enemies in the gate.

                                                  Psalm 127:3-5

 

Bible Verses about Honoring Your Parents

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”

                                                  Ephesians 6:1-3

 

 Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.

                                                 Exodus 20:12

 

Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God has commanded you, so that you may live long and that it may go well with you in the land the Lord your God is giving you.

                                                Deuteronomy 5:16

 

For God said, ‘Honor your father and mother’ and ‘Anyone who curses their father or mother is to be put to death.’ But you say that if anyone declares that what might have been used to help their father or mother is ‘devoted to God,’ they are not to ‘honor their father or mother’ with it. Thus you nullify the word of God for the sake of your tradition.

                                                Matthew 15:4-6

 

 

Bible Verses about Listening to Your Father

 

Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction
and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.
They are a garland to grace your head
and a chain to adorn your neck.

                                              Proverbs 1:8-9

 

My son, keep your father’s command
and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.
Bind them always on your heart;
fasten them around your neck.
When you walk, they will guide you;
when you sleep, they will watch over you;
when you awake, they will speak to you.

                                              Proverbs 6:20-22

 

Start children off on the way they should go,
and even when they are old they will not turn from it.

                                            Proverbs 22:6

 

Listen to your father, who gave you life,
and do not despise your mother when she is old.
 Buy the truth and do not sell it—
wisdom, instruction and insight as well.

                                           Proverbs 23:22-23

 

 

Bible Verses about Discipline

My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord,
Nor detest His correction;
For whom the Lord loves He corrects,
Just as a father the son in whom he delights.

                                            Proverbs 3:11-12

 

 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten?

                                            Hebrews 12:7

 

He who spares his rod hates his son,
But he who loves him disciplines him promptly.

                                            Proverbs 13:24

 

Bible Verses about God the Father

yet for us there is one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we for Him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, through whom are all things, and through whom we live.

                                             1 Corinthians 8:6

 

Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven.

                                             Matthew 23:9

 

And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!”

                                             Galatians 4:6

 

In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.

                                             John 14:2

 

If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him!

                                             Luke 11:13

 

As a father has compassion on his children,
so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him;

                                             Psalm 103:13

 

P.S. In case you didn’t know, my father is also my hand model in each work of art you see here on Master’s Hand Collection. I chose him to represent the hand of God because of the close relationship we have and his strong faith in Jesus. And he thinks it’s kinda funny being a hand model. I guess that wasn’t on his bucket list.

I truly pray these Strong Bible Verses for Father’s Day have shined a light on your relationship with your earthly father, and more importantly with your Heavenly Father!

Let me know which scripture for Father’s Day spoke to your heart in the comments below. I promise to answer back and pray for you.

A Father's Joy

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By |2020-06-16T14:45:04-05:00June 16th, 2020|Bible Verses, Father's Day|0 Comments

Calming Bible Verses about Peace

Calming Bible Verses about Peace

Do you struggle with worry, fear, or doubt? Do you feel like your life is one catastrophe after another? Do you think peace is something that’s only talked about in church or those feel-good movies on TV?

Yeah… I feel ya!

In our society, peace is a fleeting feeling, here one minute and gone the next. The world tells us we just need a mini-vacay, a shopping spree, or a pedicure and then we’ll have the peace we’re after. Believe me, I love a girl’s day out as much as anyone, but these things will only distract us for a short time. Eventually, life catches up with us and we’re right back where we started, stressed out, and knee-deep in chaos.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. A solution to all of the negativity is out there, and it can be yours if you want it.

God gives us peace, real peace. It’s different from the peace the world offers, and it doesn’t cost a dime!

Fear and worry threaten to tear us apart from the inside out. But they don’t stand a chance against God’s peace! It calms the chaos life throws our way. And it slays the beast of worry, fear, and doubt.

If we want to find God’s peace all we need to do is turn to the scriptures. So, I decided to put together some Calming Bible Verses about Peace. Once you read them, you’ll understand how God’s peace is the opposite of the world’s. You’ll begin to see His peace take shape in your life. And soon, the struggle of worry, fear, and doubt will fade away as you discover real and lasting peace is only a prayer away.

Let’s dive in, shall we?…

The Peace of Jesus

Jesus is called the Prince of Peace for a reason. He is our Savior, our Redeemer, and Peace itself! When life is anything but peaceful and chaos is the reigning force in our lives… He says “Peace, be still”, and calms the raging storm. This is the peace that only comes from knowing Jesus and you can find it in these verses.

 

For unto us a Child is born,
Unto us a Son is given;
And the government will be upon His shoulder.
And His name will be called
Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

                                     Isaiah 9:6

 

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

                                   John 14:27

 

 

These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.

                                John 16:33  

 

 

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your request be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

                                 Philippians 4:6-7

 

 

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts.

                                   Colossians 3:15

 

 

Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, “Peace, be still!” And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.

                                   Mark 4:39

 

Free Devotional 7 Simple Ways to See God's Hand in Your Life

Peace is a Blessing from God

Living a Christian life is full of blessings…Salvation, forgiveness, love, and yes…peace! These next scriptures speak to the peace we find when we put our trust in the Lord.

 

You will keep him in perfect peace,
Whose mind is stayed on You,
Because he trusts in You.

                                   Isaiah 26:3

 

 

The Lord will give strength to His people;
The Lord will bless His people with peace.

                                   Psalm 29:11

 

 

Great peace have those who love Your law,
And nothing causes them to stumble.

                                  Psalm 119:165

 

 

Live in Peace

God blesses us peace, and He asks us to live in peace with others. I know it can seem like we have no control over a peaceful existence with our neighbors, but there are times when we have a choice between stirring up conflict or working towards harmony. In those moments God says to offer an olive branch instead of a curt reply and choose peace over adversity.

 

If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.

                                  Romans 12:18

 

 

Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord:

                                 Hebrews 12:14

 

 

Let him turn away from evil and do good;
Let him seek peace and pursue it.

                                 1 Peter 3:11

 

 

Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil,
But counselors of peace have joy.

                                  Proverbs 12:20

 

 

Therefore let us pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify another.

                                 Romans 14:19

 

 

Now the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

                                 James 3:18

 

 

Depart from evil and do good;
Seek peace and pursue it.

                                Psalm 34:14

Blessed are the peacemakers, For they shall be called sons of God.

Matthew 5:9

 

God’s peace comes from knowing Him and seeing His hand move in your life. I truly hope these Calming Bible Verses about Peace have touched your heart and renewed your spirit. Before we go, I’d like to share one last verse. This is my prayer for you today…

Now may the Lord of peace Himself give you peace always in every way. The Lord be with you all.

                                2 Thessalonians 3:16

artwork titled Prince of Peace by Master's Hand Collection

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By |2020-08-15T13:28:12-05:00May 31st, 2020|Bible Verses, Peace|0 Comments

Bible Verses about Joy that will Fill Your Heart with Gladness

Bible Verses About Joy that will fill your heart with Gladness

Today I’m playing “The Glad Game” by channeling my inner Pollyanna and sharing these Bible verses about joy that will fill your heart with gladness.

If like me, you’re a fan of the book or movie, you know that the glad game is a central part of the story of Pollyanna. Her father made up this game to teach her how to deal with the disappointments in her life. And he showed her that by focusing on the things that bring joy instead of sadness she could rise above and overcome any hardship.

Likewise, our Heavenly Father has given us the one tool we need to play our own version of the glad game, the Bible. It is through His Word that God teaches us how to overcome the difficult circumstances we are faced with every day. This verse from Philippians 4:8 has a very close relationship to the glad game as it tells us to focus on what is positive instead of what is negative …whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.

Our version of the glad game is not about pretending that we don’t know or see that there are bad things going on around us. Of course we do. But God commands us to not let negativity weight us down or take hold within us. But instead to put our thoughts and energy into the goodness that surrounds us. When we do, God will renew our hearts and minds. He will refresh our souls. And He will give us strength for the journey ahead.

We can choose joy over sorrow!

With that in mind, let’s play “The Glad Game” by looking at some scriptures about the joy that is sure to fill our hearts with gladness.

Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.

                                                      Nehemiah 8:10

You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

                                                      Psalm 16:11

 

You have made known to me the ways of life; You will make me full of joy in Your presence.

                                                      Acts 2:28

 

Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning.

                                                      Psalm 30:5

Free Devotional 7 Simple Ways to See God's Hand in Your Life

 

Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.

                                                    1 Peter 4:12-13

 

Therefore with joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation.

                                                     Isaiah 12:3

 

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 12:2

 

Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation.

                                                   Habakkuk 3:18

 

These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.

                                                   John 15:11

 

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

                                                     James 1:2-4

 

Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling,
And to present you faultless
Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy,
To God our Savior,
Who alone is wise,
Be glory and majesty,
Dominion and power,
Both now and forever.
Amen.

                                                  Jude 1:24-25

 

 that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,

                                                    1 Peter 1:7-8

 

What I love most about Pollyanna is her infectious positivity. The joy she had quickly spread throughout her town and changed the hearts of everyone she met. All it only took to make a real impact was one little girl who had the gumption to share her worldview.

We can have that same gumption too. By allowing God’s Word to change us from the inside out, we can have a positive outlook and make a real impact for God’s kingdom. The fruit of the Spirit, love, joy, and peace will follow us wherever we go. People will see the difference inside of us. And before we know it, the joy of the Lord will spread like wildfire to all those around us and have a lasting, positive effect in our communities.

I truly hope that these Bible Verses about joy will fill your heart with gladness and remind you of all that Jesus has done in your life. And I pray that everyone around you will feel the joy the Lord surrounding them today.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

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12 Uplifting Bible Verses for Faith in Hard Times
How to Weather Life's Storms - Isaiah 4:6
By |2020-06-22T18:33:26-05:00May 25th, 2020|Joy|0 Comments

12 Uplifting Bible Verses for Faith in Hard Times

12 Uplifting Bible Verses for Faith in Hard Times

Life is hard! Really hard. And some days are tough to get through. Maybe it’s the little things that add up and drive us crazy or maybe we’re facing much bigger problems in life. Either way we can take comfort in God’s promises. He is faithful! And His word provides comfort anytime we need it. No matter what you’re going through, I truly hope that these 12 uplifting Bible verses for faith in hard times will give you the strength to carry on.

The substance of our faith keeps us going in hard times.

We may not be able to see faith with our eyes, but just because we can’t see it doesn’t mean it isn’t real. We believe in gravity, yet we can’t see it. But we know that gravity is real and exists because we feel it and experience for ourselves. Likewise, we know our faith in Jesus is real because we feel it in our heart and experience it our daily lives. This is the substance of our faith and the hope that is within us. It is the reality that we have Jesus and He has us. If we truly believe in Jesus, then we have the assurance of our faith because we “see” it in our lives. These two verses speak directly to this kind of “blind faith”.

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1 #BibleVerses #FaithClick To Tweet

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

                                                                Hebrews 11:1

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

                                                            2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Our faith is a firm place to stand when we are scared.

It’s so easy to be discouraged and feel defeated when things don’t go our way. We become scared of what tomorrow will bring and wonder if it will ever get better. But our faith in Jesus is our security and firm place to stand. When our faith is shaken, and life tries to tear us down, Jesus gives us strength and bravery. So stand fast in the faith and be strengthened by the One who died to set us free. Run to Him and find safety and unshakable ground.

Watch, stand fast in the faith, be brave, be strong.

                                                            1 Corinthians 16:13

The name of the Lord is a strong tower; The righteous run to it and are safe.

                                                            Proverbs 18:10

The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you, He will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid, do not be discouraged.

                                                            Deuteronomy 31:8

 

Comfort in the Psalms

The book Psalms is full of wonderful descriptions of God’s protection and love for us. In fact there are too many to list here, so I encourage you to seek out these comforting scriptures for yourself. To get you started here are two of my favorites. They always give me comfort and inspiration when I’m feeling knocked down. I hope that they will lift you up and give you comfort as well.

God is our refuge and strength,
A very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear,
Even though the earth be removed,
And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;
Though its waters roar and be troubled,
Though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah

There is a river whose streams shall make glad the city of God,
The holy place of the tabernacle of the Most High.
God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved;
God shall help her, just at the break of dawn.

 

Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!

                                                 Psalm 46:1-5; 10

 

I would have lost heart, unless I had believed
That I would see the goodness of the Lord
In the land of the living.

Wait on the Lord;
Be of good courage,
And He shall strengthen your heart;
Wait, I say, on the Lord!

                                                Psalm 27:13-14

Free Devotional 7 Simple Ways to See God's Hand in Your Life

 

There is no doubt that hard-ships will come in life, but with Jesus we have victory!

Hard times seem to sneak up and hit us out of nowhere. When we least expect them they show up like an uninvited party guest who just won’t leave. But the Bible tells us that we should expect hard-ships in this life and that we should find joy in it. I know what you’re thinking, because I’m thinking it too. How can we possibly find joy in suffering? Well, it all goes back to Jesus. He suffered for us and He promised that we would suffer for His namesake. But we shouldn’t let it get us down, because even though we are participants in the suffering of Christ, we are also participants in His victory too! Because of Jesus our current circumstances will fade away in the light of eternity. We are victorious over this world and the hard-ships we face! And it’s all because of Jesus and His glory!

My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.

                                                            James 1:2-4

Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed.

                                                            1 Peter 4:12-13

 We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed-

                                                             2 Corinthians 4:8-9

In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ, whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, receiving the end of your faith—the salvation of your souls.

                                                             1 Peter 1:6-9

But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

                                                             1 Corinthians 15:57

 

Each of these 12 uplifting Bible verses for faith in hard times reminds us of God’s faithfulness. Yes, we face tough times in life. But God’s promises are always true. He is with us. He is for us. And He will never leave us alone in our despair. With God all things are possible. Even faith in hard times. So take heart, the Lord is with you. Keep the faith and claim the victory in Jesus name!

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By |2020-09-03T11:19:40-05:00May 15th, 2020|Bible Verses, Faith|7 Comments

Powerful Bible Verses about Grace

Powerful Bible Verses about Grace

When I think of grace, I see in my mind a beautiful ballerina taking the stage. Her hair is pulled up in the perfect ballet bun, her organza and tulle tutu frames her body just right and her pirouette is on pointe, y’all. The way she turns and spins and jumps through the air, oh, what grace!

Grace, it’s a word that gets thrown around a lot in Christian circles. Theologians and other “smart people” spend countless hours debating the concept of grace. But grace is not just for theologians to debate. It’s something for each one of us, not only to understand but to possess.

So, what exactly is grace? Hint… it’s not the prayer we say before dinner. Although, it’s always a good idea to thank God for everything He has given us. Instead, grace is God’s favor bestowed on those who believe in His Son, Jesus. It is the power of God to freely forgive our sin even though we don’t deserve it. That seems simple enough, and really it is. So together, let’s dive deep into the scriptures with these powerful Bible verses about grace.

God’s grace gives us salvation.

There is nothing we can do to earn salvation. We just don’t have the power to save ourselves. But that’s okay because God has given us a way to be saved. His grace and mercy was poured out through His Son, our Savior on the cross. And these verses attest to the fact that faith in Jesus and the free gift of grace are the only thing that has the power to give us salvation. Grace is yours if you choose to accept Jesus as your Savior. He is the One and only way to grace and forgiveness of sin.

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

 

who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began,

                                              2 Timothy 1:9

For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.

                                              John 1:17

 

In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.

                                             Ephesians 1:7

 

not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

                                             Titus 3:3-7

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God gives us more and more grace as we need it.

Thankfully, grace, God’s favor, is not a one and done proposition. We receive His grace continually, daily in fact. The more we need grace, the more God gives it to us.

 But He gives more grace. Therefore He says:

“God resists the proud,
But gives grace to the humble.”

                                            James 4:6

 

  And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace.

                                            John 1:16

 

And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.

                                          2 Corinthians 9:8

 

Grace helps us in time of need.

Hard times will surely come our way and we may feel weak and powerless in the face of them. But the grace of God gives us strength and power to continue on. As the children’s hymn, Jesus Loves Me, says, “They are weak, but He is strong.”

 

And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

                                            2 Corinthians 12:9

 

 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

 

But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.

                                        1 Peter 5:10

 

We can grow in grace and watch it blossom in our lives.

God’s grace is given to us the minute we know Jesus as our personal Lord and Savior. And there’s nothing that can take grace away from us. But each day that we live with Jesus, we learn more about Him and His character. We go deeper into grace, grow in it, and learn more from it. Grace takes root in our hearts and we see it blossom in our lives. It simply becomes a part of who we are as Believers.

but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen.

                                           2 Peter 3:18

 

For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.

                                           Titus 2:11-14

 

Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord…

                                          2 Peter 1:2

I hope that these powerful Bible verses about grace have given you a place to start thinking about grace and it’s meaning in your life. God has so much He wants to give to you. I pray that you will accept it and grow in grace and knowledge. To Him be the glory! Blessings to you!

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By |2020-06-22T18:25:34-05:00May 10th, 2020|Grace|9 Comments

Precious Bible Verses for Mother’s Day

Precious Bible Verses for Mother's Day

It’s the time of year we set aside to celebrate the most precious woman in our lives… our Mother. She’s the one who brought us into this world and made us the person we are today.

My mother was a strong independent career woman. The very definition of a modern-day Proverbs 31 woman. But she was more than that to me. She was my best friend and confidant. The person I could always turn to no matter what. She listened patiently to all of my problems, secrets, and dreams. She held me close when I hurt and gave me the nickname “Precious”. Because that’s what I was to her and she was never afraid to let me know it. She was also a lot of fun and had a way of turning everyday things into a game. She was an amazing lady who loved her children and put us above herself.

But her greatest gift to me and my brother was her love for the Lord. She was a gifted Bible teacher, sharing her knowledge in Sunday school classes, Wednesday night Precept meetings, family gatherings, and most importantly in our own home. What a blessing it was to grow up in a house where I was taught the Word of God every single day!

This is where we begin our look at Precious Bible Verses for Mother’s Day! There’s something here for everyone. So, let’s dive in an learn what God has to say about Mother.

 

A Mother’s Teaching

A mother’s most important job is to teach her children to love and respect the Lord. This instruction is the foundation of a child’s faith. It stays with them when they are grown and follows them wherever they go. It truly is the most precious gift a mother could give her child.

My son, keep your father’s command
and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.
Bind them always on your heart;
fasten them around your neck.
When you walk, they will guide you;
when you sleep, they will watch over you;
when you awake, they will speak to you.

                                              Proverbs 6:20-22

 

Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction
and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.
They are a garland to grace your head
and a chain to adorn your neck.

                                             Proverbs 1:8-9

 

Start children off on the way they should go,
and even when they are old they will not turn from it.

                                           Proverbs 22:6

 

Honor Your Father and Mother

As you’ll read in just a few seconds, honoring your parents is the very first of the Ten Commandments with a promise. Respect your mother and father and in return, God will give you a long and successful life. This promise builds strong, godly families and shows the faith of all who live in your household. No One represented this commandment better than Jesus Himself. As He faced the cross, He remembered His precious mother and made sure she would be cared for in His absence.

Honor your father and your mother, as the Lord your God has commanded you, so that you may live long and that it may go well with you in the land the Lord your God is giving you.

                                               Deuteronomy 5:16

 

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. “Honor your father and mother”—which is the first commandment with a promise— “so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth.”

                                                 Ephesians 6:1-3

 

 Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.

                                                Exodus 20:12

 

When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.

                                                John 19:26-27

 

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Blessed

Proverbs 31 tells the tale of a virtuous woman. Her most precious characteristic is recognized when her children see all she has done to keep the home running smoothly, her family feed, and God first in her life. Then they honor her and call her blessed!

Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:

                                                Proverbs 31:28

 

Honor her for all that her hands have done,
and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.

                                             Proverbs 31:31

 

 And Mary said:

“My soul glorifies the Lord
     and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior,
   for he has been mindful

    of the humble state of his servant.
From now on all generations will call me blessed,

                                                Luke 1:46-48

 

 

The Joys of Motherhood

 

God lovingly created each one of us. He knew us before we were born. And His greatest joy is in His children. This is the same joy God gives to mothers everywhere. The knowledge of their precious unborn child growing inside of them. The sweet face of their newborn baby as they hold them for the first time. Gently guiding them along life’s path. And seeing them follow the Lord with all their heart. These are the joys of Motherhood.

 

For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.

                                             Psalm 139:13

 

May your father and mother rejoice;
may she who gave you birth be joyful!

                                              Proverbs 23:25

 

Can a mother forget the baby at her breast
and have no compassion on the child she has borne?
Though she may forget,
I will not forget you!

                                              Isaiah 49:15

 

A woman giving birth to a child has pain because her time has come; but when her baby is born she forgets the anguish because of her joy that a child is born into the world.

                                              John 16:21

 

 

Children are a heritage from the Lord,
offspring a reward from him.

                                              Psalm 127:3

 

 

Children’s children are a crown to the aged,
and parents are the pride of their children.

                                             Proverbs 17:6

 

When Mother’s Day is Hard

Mother’s Day isn’t always a happy event. Sometimes it’s downright hard. Maybe you’ve lost your mom like me. Or you struggle with infertility and the deep desire to be a mom yourself. God has words of comfort for you on this difficult day.

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted
and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

                                              Psalm 34:18

 

Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.

                                              Matthew 5:4

 

For this child I prayed, and the Lord has granted me my petition which I asked of Him.  Therefore I also have lent him to the Lord; as long as he lives he shall be lent to the Lord.” So they worshiped the Lord there.

                                            1 Samuel 1:27-28

 

He settles the childless woman in her home
as a happy mother of children.

Praise the Lord.

                                              Psalm 113:9

 

 Each of these Precious Bible Verses for Mother’s Day celebrates Mom. I pray they speak words of wisdom into your heart as you prepare for her special day!

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By |2020-08-15T13:41:04-05:00May 5th, 2020|Bible Verses, Mother's Day|0 Comments

How to Praise God in a Pandemic

How to Praise in a Pandemic

Everyone has those special Bible Verses God uses over and over again to speak directly to us.

In my life, Habakkuk 3 is one of them. God puts this scripture in front of me every time I need a little reality check.

Honestly, I’ve thought I was in dire straits before. But the current global crisis we’re living through puts them all to shame. I realize now, no matter how hard I thought I had it, I never knew real hardship until now. And this piece of scripture has never been more relevant than it is during this pandemic.

 

Though the fig tree may not blossom,
Nor fruit be on the vines:
Though the labor of the olive may fail’
And the fields yield no food;
Though the flock may be cut off from the fold,
And there be no herd in the stalls-
Yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
I will joy in the God of my salvation.
The Lord God is my strength;
He will make my feet like deer’s feet,
And He will make me walk on my high hills.
                                           Habakkuk 3:17-19

When Habakkuk wrote these words, he knew his people were moving into a time of struggle. Soon they would be without the basic necessities of life. The food and water that was once abundant would become scarce. A safe harbor would be hard to find. And survival would become an epic battle of willpower.

But Habakkuk also knew if they continued praising God even in the midst of hardship, He would see them through this troubling time.

Each part of this verse speaks to the effects of a pandemic on our daily lives.

Though the fig tree may not blossom…

In ancient times, the fig tree was plentiful, and the fruit used to make cakes, candy, or other sweets. For us, the fig represents the creature-comforts, the little luxuries we enjoy. We like them but we can live without them too.

Nor fruit be on the vines:

We turn an important corner in this part of the verse. Instead of missing the luxuries, we can do without, we begin to talk about the essentials. The fruit of the vine became wine, an important commodity back then. It was used not only to drink with dinner but also to purify water. Without grapes, there would be no wine. And without wine no life-sustaining drinking water. Nowadays, we have filtration systems that supply fresh water to our homes and easily accessible bottled water. But when systems break down or truckers can’t deliver, our most essential commodity is cut off.

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Though the labor of the olive may fail’

And the fields yield no food…

The people used olive oil the same way we use butter. Without this precious oil, there would be no bread to eat. And without the crops, no vegetables on the table.

 

Though the flock may be cut off from the fold,
And there be no herd in the stalls…

Ancient people were not vegetarians (sorry vegans). They relied on flocks of sheep and herds of goats for protein. And without access to these animals, they would starve.

In modern times, we rely on farmers and ranchers to supply both of these sources of food. But during this crisis, they’re struggling to keep up with the demand and deliver their goods to market. Without their hard work and commitment, we’ll struggle to find what we need to feed our families at the grocery store.

Our lives have been turned upside down by a pandemic we couldn’t see coming. Everything we once had is gone. At least for the time being. But there is still hope for us. And it comes in the form of praising God in a pandemic.

Sounds crazy, right?

How can we praise God when the world is falling apart?

Truthfully, if Habakkuk could see the defeat of his people coming on the horizon, still remember the times God saw His people through hardship, and praise Him in such dire circumstances, then surely we can find it in ourselves to do the same too.

Because God has not forgotten us. Our struggle is not invisible to Him. And He is still there in the fight with us.

I was reminded of this while I was taking a shower the other night, (I do all my best thinking in the shower ya’ll) 🛁

God chose that moment to speak words of wisdom into my heart. They’re an updated version of Habakkuk 3, a mirror image of this scripture for a modern time. I’d like to share them with you now. But please remember they are not meant to replace scripture, only to understand it better. Here’s what God had to say to me.

Even though toilet paper is in short supply and I can’t find it anywhere…

I will praise You!

Even though there’s a meat shortage on the horizon and I have no idea how I will feed my family…

I will praise You!

Even though I’ve lost my job and I don’t know how I’ll pay the bills…

I will praise You!

Even though my grandma is on lockdown in a nursing home, I can’t visit her, and now she’s being tested for COVID-19…

I will praise You!

Even though I’ve lost a loved one to this terrible virus and my heart is broken…

I will praise You!

Even though the future seems so uncertain and I’m scared…

I will praise You!

Praising God is more than wishful thinking. It’s a resolve to have faith in hardship. And it’s understanding that even if we lose everything, we still have the God of our salvation.

Our confidence in our loving Father is unshakable because we know He has us in the palm of His hand. And we understand He will give us the strength to face whatever lies ahead.

This is the same confidence Habakkuk wrote about in verse 19.

 

The Lord God is my strength;
He will make my feet like deer’s feet,
And He will make me walk on my high hills.

Deer never wonder if they’re gonna plummet to their death when they scale a rocky mountain cliff. They instinctively know their feet are made for it. They’re unwavering in their ascent, jumping higher and higher until they reach the top. Sure-footed and confident.

So, let’s keep ascending higher and higher in our faith, believing God is our strength in times of trouble. And allow Him to give us sure-footed deer’s feet as we praise Him through this pandemic.

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Your Labor is Not in Vain – 1 Corinthians 15:58

Your Labor is Not in Vain 1 Corinthians 15:58

Does it seem like no matter how hard you work nothing ever changes? Are you worn out from the demands of daily life? Believe me, I feel your pain. We’ve all been there and sometimes we just need a little inspiration to get through it.

No matter how weary or exhausted you feel right now, God doesn’t want you to remain there. He wants you to be energized and ready to take on the world. So, He gave us some much needed inspiration for a time such as this. Here’s His promise for a worn out, down-right tired heart.

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

Let’s break this down into bite sized pieces and find out exactly what Paul meant when he wrote these words.

My beloved brethren…

Like many of the promises within the Bible this one is meant for us, the body of Christ and not the whole world. God has so much that He wants to give us, but we must be a believer first in order to be partakers of His promises.

as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust.
                                                                                    2 Peter 1:3-4

Steadfast…

We are to be focused on Jesus, and to continue focusing on Him even when life throws us a curveball. At times, it can seem to be a hard task, but if we remain steadfast we will see a real change happening. Instead of the daily chaos of life, that steadfast attitude will turn into a peace that stays with us.

And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
                                                                                  Philippians 4:7

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Immovable…

Many people have called me stubborn over the years and I’m sure they didn’t mean it as a compliment. 😉 While being stubborn about silly things that don’t matter is not the right way to be, stubbornness in Godly things is always good. The Apostle Paul is calling on us to not be wishy washy, but instead to stand our ground and keep the faith when it really does matter. We know that God does not change, His ways are always the same. Likewise, we are to be, stubborn, single-minded and immovable in the ways of Christ.

God is in the midst of her, she shall not be moved.
                                                              Psalm 46:5

Always abounding…

As I read this verse, the catchphrase, “under promise and over deliver comes to mind”. It’s about an abundance of love for our fellow man that flows out of us and covers them with the love of Christ. And it’s about going that extra mile even when we’re tired and exhausted because we want them to understand exactly who Jesus is and what He means in their life.

But do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.
                                                                                   Hebrews 13:16

Work of the Lord…

The work of the Lord is wide and varied. It can mean different things to each one of us. So the question becomes, what has God asked of you specifically? At home? At work? At church? And in any other area of your life? If you are unsure of God’s plan for you, simply ask Him. He will tell you. Then when you have the answer, you can put it into practice in a way that is pleasing to Him.

equip you in every good thing to do His will, working in us that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be the glory forever and ever, Amen.
                                                                                   Hebrews 13:21

Not in vain…

Whatever we do for the kingdom of God, it will not be in vain. God has promised to reward us for our efforts. That reward may come in this life, and wouldn’t that be great? But if not in this life, our reward will definitely be waiting for us in the next.

And behold, I am coming quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every one according to his work.
                                                                                  Revelation 22:12

When we labor for the Lord we lose nothing and gain everything. He has promised to equip us with what we need for the work He has given us. And He has promised to repay us a hundredfold for our sacrifice. So, my dear friend and fellow laborer, my prayer for you today is that you will not lose heart when fatigue sets in and that God will energize you for the work ahead. May God bless you and give you rest!

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Monday Motivation – Numbers 6:24-26

God takes pleasure in the well being of His people. He wants to bestow blessing upon blessing to us. And this Bible Verse about Grace gives us a vision of God smiling down on us in our time of need. It’s a beautiful picture of our loving Heavenly Father and the grace He provides. May it fill your heart with goodness and grace today!

The Lord bless you and keep you. Numbers 6:24-26

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Why is Jesus the Good Shepherd? – John 10:11

Why is Jesus the Good Shepherd? John 10:11

Recently, I was asked the question, “Why is Jesus the Good Shepherd?” Truthfully, I never gave it much thought. I simply accepted what I was taught as a child. But it’s an intriguing and important question, so I did a little research.

In John 10, Jesus calls Himself the good shepherd many times. Today I’d like to explore four of the different aspects of what Jesus was talking about.

#1 Jesus is the door.

Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep.  John 10:7

I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.  John 10:9

In ancient times, the shepherd kept the sheep safe at night by laying down to sleep in front of the door of the sheep’s pin. He did this to keep the sheep safely inside of the pin and to keep predators out.

Jesus is the door that we must enter through if we want to see God the Father. Jesus said in John 14:6 “No one comes to the Father except through Me.”  When we accept Jesus as our Savior, the door is opened to the Father. Then Jesus becomes not only “the Good Shepherd” but our shepherd. He keeps us safely in the fold and protects us from the predators of a Christian life.

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#2 Jesus is the Leader

…and he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them: and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice.  John 10:3-4

A shepherd doesn’t follow his sheep, he leads them. The shepherd would go out in the front of the fold and the sheep would follow behind their shepherd.

Jesus has lead the way for us. His life is the example for us to follow. Everything He did and everything He said was to teach us how to live. Our path is to follow the example set by our leader and shepherd, Jesus.

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#3 Jesus is the One We Know

Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.  John 10:5

I am the good shepherd, and I know My sheep, and am known by My own.  John 10:14

When the shepherd called to his sheep, they could easily recognize his voice and they would come to him. But sheep are timid and scared animals and they will run and hide from someone they don’t know. Sheep may be timid, but they are smart enough to tell the difference between a stranger’s voice and the voice of their shepherd. They would never follow a stranger even if the stranger called to them the same way that their shepherd would call.

We can recognize our shepherd too. Because we have accepted Jesus as our Savior and because we have an intimate and personal relationship with Him, we can easily recognize His voice. There are many competing voices out there in the world and they all want our attention. But just like the sheep, we shouldn’t listen to or follow anyone other than our shepherd, Jesus.

#4 Jesus is the Savior

I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives his life for the sheep.  John 10:11

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 the power to lay it down, and I have the power take it again.  John 10:17-18

I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd gives his life for the sheep. John 10:11Click To Tweet

A shepherd takes care of and protects his sheep no matter what the cost. If just one sheep goes missing, he will go out to find that missing sheep. And the shepherd will put his own life at risk to find his sheep and bring it back into the fold.

How fortunate we are, that we have a Savior and Shepherd who died for us! Jesus willingly gave up His life as a sacrifice for us. Then He took it back up three days later because He has the power to do so!

Jesus is the Good Shepherd because He is our door and way to the Father. He is our leader and example. He is the voice that we know. And above all else, He is our Savior.

Your Turn
Do you have a story to tell about how Jesus has been the Good Shepherd in your life? I’d love to read it, so please leave a comment below.

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What is the Meaning of an Easter Egg? – John 11:25

What is the Meaning of an Easter Egg? John 11:25

Easter is almost here! And it promises to be a memorable one!

We might be celebrating in a slightly different way this year but in our house and our church, we’re preparing for this holiday just like we always do.

Part of that celebration is the annual Easter egg hunt. Soon, we’ll hard-boil eggs to dye them or fill plastic eggs with jelly beans and chocolate. The kids have a lot of fun decorating the eggs. And we have fun hiding them and watching as the kids hunt for the precious little things. Their faces lighting up in glee when they see the pastel colors peeking out from the grass.

But is there a deeper meaning behind this Easter tradition? What is the meaning of an Easter egg?

Traditionally, an egg represents the resurrection of Jesus Christ and the new life we have in Him. The boiling symbolizes the sealing of the tomb where Jesus was laid. And the cracking of the egg is a symbol of Jesus’s resurrection, bursting forth in victory over death. These words of Jesus show us the importance of the resurrection.

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 11:25-26

With this one statement, Jesus told us so much about Himself and about our identity in Him.

I am the resurrection and the life…

Jesus is the resurrection. It was by His own power that He conquered death and rose from the grave. Jesus is the life. Because of Him, we can experience a new life through our belief in Him.

Jesus is the resurrection. It was by His own power that He conquered death and rose from the grave. #Easter #eastereggs Click To Tweet

He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live…

Physically we will all die, it’s just a fact. But spiritually, we have a choice of where we want to spend eternity. If we chose to follow, Jesus we will live in heaven forever with Him! If we chose not to follow Jesus, then we won’t have this promised spiritual life after death and we will be condemned to hell.

Whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die…

We should be living our lives here on earth for Jesus. We should be spreading the good news of salvation in Jesus to everyone around us. My pastor recently put it in perspective by sharing this. “Jesus is the headline, we are just the paperboy.” I love that statement! It speaks volumes to me and makes me see my role so much clearer.

Do you believe this?…

God is always concerned with the condition of our heart. With this simple question, Jesus is prompting us to take action! What is the condition of our heart? Do we believe and trust in Jesus? Are we certain about where we will go when we die? Have we given our lives over to Jesus? Are we living for Him right here and right now? These are the questions that we need to answer before we can move forward.

I hope that you will take the time during this Easter holiday to answer these questions in your life. To really nail down what motivates you.

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If you haven’t accepted Jesus as your Savior yet, now is the time. The free gift of salvation is yours for the taking. If you have questions about what it means to be saved, you can read more about it in the Accepting Jesus section, or please go to your local church and ask the pastor to speak with you about it. I know they will be happy to talk with you.

If you are already a Christian and have fallen away from the faith or have lost the luster you once felt for Christ, Easter is the perfect time to reconnect with the joy of your salvation. There is a peace that only comes from knowing Jesus, and you can find it again. Draw near to Him and He will draw near to you. (James 4:8)

Happy Easter and May God bless you greatly!

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Bible Verses about Winter that will Set your Soul on Fire!

Bible Verses about Winter that will Set your Soul on Fire

Winter is a God given time of rest. A chance to hit pause and reflect on what He is doing in our lives. Because no matter what the season is, God still has a lot to say to us. In theses Bible Verses about Winter that will Set your Soul on Fire, we can read what the Ancient of Days is up to while the weather outside is a mix of rain, ice, and snow. Together, let’s allow His Word to warm our hearts and light a blaze within us.

 

For behold, the winter is past,
The rain is over and gone.
                                       

                                 Song of Solomon 2:11

For to the snow He says, ‘Fall on the earth,’
And to the downpour and the rain, ‘Be strong.’
He seals the hand of every man,
That all men may know His work.

                                  Job 37:6-7

 

You have set all the borders of the earth;
You have made summer and winter.

                                  Psalm 74:17

 

Out of the south comes the storm,
And out of the north the cold.
From the breath of God ice is made,
And the expanse of the waters is frozen.

                                 Job 37:9-10

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For as the rain comes down, and the snow from heaven,
And do not return there,
But water the earth,
And make it bring forth and bud,
That it may give seed to the sower
And bread to the eater,
So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth;
It shall not return to Me void,
But it shall accomplish what I please,
And it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it.                              

                                   Isaiah 55:10-11

 

He spreads the snow like wool
and scatters the frost like ashes.
 He hurls down his hail like pebbles.
Who can withstand his icy blast?
He sends his word and melts them;
he stirs up his breezes, and the waters flow.

                                 Psalm 147:16-18

 

Praise the Lord from the earth,
Sea monsters and all deeps;
 Fire and hail, snow and clouds;
Stormy wind, fulfilling His word;

                                Psalm 148:7-8

 

“Come now, and let us reason together,”
Says the Lord,
“Though your sins are as scarlet,
They will be as white as snow;
Though they are red like crimson,
They will be like wool.

                                Isaiah 1:18

 

She is not afraid of the snow for her household,
For all her household are clothed with scarlet.

                               Proverbs 31:21

 

“I watched till thrones were put in place,
And the Ancient of Days was seated;
His garment was white as snow,
And the hair of His head was like pure wool.
His throne was a fiery flame,
Its wheels a burning fire;

                                 Daniel 7:9

 

and in the midst of the seven lampstands One like the Son of Man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band. His head and hair were white like wool, as white as snow, and His eyes like a flame of fire; 

                                 Revelation 1:13-14

 

And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat on it. His countenance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow. And the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men.

 But the angel answered and said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified.  He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.

                                 Matthew 28:2-6

 

 

These are just a few of the many Bible Verses about Winter that will set your soul on fire! I pray you will seek out more of them and most of all be transformed by the renewing of your mind (Romans 12:2) during this brief pause in nature.

Please leave a comment and let me know which of these scriptures spoke to your heart today.

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What is the Purpose of Life? -Matthew 28:18-20

What is the Purpose of Life? Matthew 28:18-20

Last week we discussed, “What is the Meaning of Life?” People have searched for the answer to this question since the beginning of time. They are hoping to find a meaning to all of the chaos we face. They mistakenly believe that if they can answer this one question, then all of their problems will fade away. As Christians we know that God gives us the answer in His Word. It’s surprisingly simple, yet powerful. If you missed last week’s post, you can read it here.

This week, I’d like to take the discussion one step further and look at the Purpose of a Christian’s life. Because we are followers of Jesus our purpose is different from the rest of the world. While most people are working hard to buy expensive possessions or rack up their 401k, we are called to achieve a more important goal.

And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
                                                                                       Matthew 28:18-20

This passage of Scripture we all know as “The Great Commission”. But what does it mean in our lives right now? This verse is our purpose and our calling as Christians. It is a commandment from our Savior about how we should be living every day. Within this one commandment there are three distinct points about the purpose we have been given, and how we are to grow God’s kingdom.
 
Go and make disciples…
 
Some of us will have the opportunity to serve God in foreign countries. But most of us will serve God here in our own country. We don’t have to go to a far off land to follow the Great Commission. Wherever we are, and whatever we are doing it is our responsibility to tell people about Jesus. We can’t leave it to chance that someone else will do it for us. God puts us where He wants us to be and we can win souls for Him right here in our own backyards. All we have to do is look around us and we will see that there are so many people who are already in our lives that need Jesus. Whether it is our calling to serve God at home or abroad, we have been given the power of the Holy Spirit to fulfill our purpose to make disciples.
 
But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.
                                                                                            Acts 1:8

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Baptize…
 
Baptism is an outward showing of our faith. It is a symbol of Christ’s death, burial and resurrection. Being baptized doesn’t save us, instead it shows the world that we are changed and have a new life in Jesus. When someone is saved, the next step is baptism. We need to make sure that we follow Christ’s command to baptize people in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit once they have received Jesus as their Savior. As always, Jesus is our example. He was baptized by John the Baptist and in doing so, fulfilled God’s will.
 
It came to pass in those days that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized by John in the Jordan. And immediately, coming up from the water, He saw the heavens parting and the Spirit descending upon Him like a dove. Then a voice came from heaven, You are My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
 
                                                                                        Mark 1:9-11
 
 Teach…
 
Once someone that we have witnessed to is “saved”, our job isn’t over. They need to be taught the Bible and about how to have a personal relationship with Jesus. I’m very grateful for all of the wonderful people who poured their knowledge of Jesus into my young mind while I was growing up. Of course, my parents, but also many Sunday School teachers, VBS workers, Deacons and friends. They invested in my life and discipled me along the way. Now it’s our turn to be the teacher. All of the things we learned, probably many years ago, God tells us to teach to the new Christians in our lives. Jesus spent time, one on one, with people. He taught them all that God wanted them to know. He is our example of how to be a teacher, and how to invest in the lives of the people around us. Just as He gave His knowledge to the twelve disciples, we must pass on our knowledge to the people that we have witnessed. Then one day they will be ready to teach all that they have learned to the next batch of new Christians.
 
And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.
 
                                                                                       2 Timothy 2:2
 
While other people are worried about their place in life, we can rest easy. Our loving Heavenly Father has given us the answers the most pressing questions we face. What is the meaning of life? Why are we here? And what is our purpose? We now know that we were created for His glory and our purpose is to share Him with everyone we meet.
 
I’m so excited to bring this Bible study to you this week! And I hope that it will encourage you, as you go out into your personal mission field, wherever that may be! There are so many people in our lives who are lost and need Jesus. I pray that you will be able to show them Christ’s love. May the God of hope guide you as you fulfill the Great Commission!
 
Again, if you missed the first part in this series “What is the Meaning of Life?” you can find it here.

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