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At The Foot of The Cross

Every day I must wake up and remember who I am in Christ- loved, accepted, redeemed, worthy and righteous. When I forget or mistake my identity, and I often do, I spend my day resolving, grasping, controlling and exhausting myself trying to secure that which is already mine, procured by the sacrifice of my Savior not the striving of myself. Jesus did die for my sins and yours, but He also forfeited everything to impart His perfect record to us. I can work so hard attempting to achieve that which I only need to surrender and receive. Friend, this week I am praying for the grace to leave our debts, failures, and insufficiencies nailed to the cross where they have been rectified. There is a shady spot waiting for us at the foot of the cross.

Jesus did die for my sins and yours, but He also forfeited everything to impart His perfect record to us. I can work so hard attempting to achieve that which I only need to surrender and receive. Friend, this week I am praying for the grace to leave our debts, failures, and insufficiencies nailed to the cross where they have been rectified. There is a shady spot waiting for us at the foot of the cross.

There is a shady spot waiting for us at the foot of the cross.

You are loved!♥️

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The Little Life of Fear

Fear causes me to live a small, sheltered life.  She tells me lies like, you are in control by suffocating your existence into the fangs of an illusion.  I don’t desire to look back on a little life that reads, she was shackled and scared.  Fear will guarantee that outcome.  Faith assures me I can do adventurous, big things because my first breath and my last are already determined by a Father who loves me and desires me to live free not frightened.  I live proportional to my level of belief.  When I forget my destination I am incarcerated.  Not all prisoners live behind visible bars.  It is only when I remember where home is that I live the life that was ransomed for me. Today was about leaning into fear, and saying, not today pesky, friend!

 

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Control

Control is an insidious intruder. I have to be very intentional to guard myself against it, and even when I am aware, it is tricky. It sneaks into every relationship and situation often undetected. One reason control is so deceptive is that sometimes it is called “helping,” and isn’t that a noble thing to do? In some situations, yes; but often when I find myself saying, “I am just trying to “help” you, that can frequently be transposed to mean, I am trying to control you or the situation. When I dissect my misdirected helpfulness, fear is often at the root; and I have come to learn that although sometimes fear is an understandable reaction, it can also be an UNBELIEVING reflection that says God will not get it right. Lord Jesus, you are in control, not me. Sometimes hidden fears lurk in the deepest recesses of my heart, and I seek a false sense of safety by “suggesting,” fixing or doing which only translates to control. Help my unbelief, Father. Give me the grace to lay my fear and desire to “fix” within your power, not my performance.

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Give Me Grace

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Jesus when loved ones are struggling, relationships are shaky, people are ailing, help me resist the desire to fix what is.  May I remember that scrambling for solutions can become a form of control and unbelief.  Keep me cognizant that it takes more courage and faith to release my most precious treasures to You, free of my clinging hands.  Allow me to care without control, hold without hovering and support without suffocating all people and situations I encounter today and each day forward.  Jesus grant me the grace that enables me to rest not carefree, but confidently in your sovereignty amidst the backdrop of a broken world.  Amen.

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Tomorrow is Only a Possibility, Not a Promise

imagesFriend, you have only been given enough for right now.  Every moment you are being given just enough to get you to the next step.  Looking from today towards tomorrow will only offer you anxiety and worry.

This second, tomorrow is only a possibility, not a promise.

Stay focused on your now, not your later.  Life is supposed to be lived in the present tense, but that is so hard for our minds that are prone to work so feverishly in the future.    Looking back while trying to walk will likely cause us to stumble while looking forward leads our life to stall.

Don’t lose the fascinating presents of today worrying about the fallible probabilities of tomorrow.  Embrace the treasures of today.  No matter how much we try and figure tomorrow out, it is in the capable hands of our Creator not in the clingy hands of our control.

You are loved.

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Give Us This Day

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…and give us THIS DAY our daily bread… Most of us learned the Lord’s Prayer as children.  But like many things I learned as a child, it was something I memorized and did not necessarily internalize.  The words were in my head, but the meaning was not in my heart.

It became apparent to me the last half decade of my life that I cannot be looking for “tomorrow’s bread” to sustain me today.

When I am searching for provision past the present, I am likely keeping company with anxiety, fear, and worry who are all known to avert me from the presence of today to the planning of tomorrow.

Tomorrow was never promised, so it is frivolous for me to waste my day, my energy or my mood trying to manage tomorrow.

This all sounds wise, but it is not always straightforward.  The Apostle Paul said he LEARNED to be content in all circumstances.  (Philippians 4:11). For me, learning is a life-long process of remembering, forgetting and remembering again.

 Every day I have to recommit to staying in the details of today and not staring at the destination of tomorrow.

Present living is challenging when I have concerning things on the horizon, but to be honest, I have learned anytime I am out of today and into tomorrow it is about me trying to control, and not letting God command.  Control is such a false imposture.  I was not in control yesterday, or today and if today should materialize into tomorrow I will still not be in control.  Fixing my eyes on tomorrow only holds me, hostage, today and robs me of the freedom found in the here and now.  May we all find rest today, and let God take care of everything beyond that should it be granted.

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Less of Me, More of You, Lord

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What am I going to do?  How am I going to handle this?  Several times over the last two weeks I have caught myself asking these questions.  I didn’t realize there is a niche of narcissism hidden in my heart until exposed by my thought pattern.

Every time my mind defaulted to one of those questions, I received a question back.  Thank you, Lord, for your faithfulness!  The responses to my questions were a unified theme-ME.  “What are YOU going to do?”  “How are YOU going to handle this?”

Do you see my problem here?  I was exalting myself and excluding God.  

Also, in those moments of fear, my first line of defense was panic instead of prayer.  When I am under pressure, I easily forget the Source of my security. Control, micromanagement, and self-reliance are such insidious impostures that lead me down a path planned by my flesh instead of a passage paved by my Father.

I am grateful for the reminder that it was time for a self-demotion in exchange for a Savior promotion.  

Life is so much lighter when I settle into my designed role as a child of a Father, who knows and controls all things.  My planning hands rarely prosper, and life becomes futile; it is when I leave room for God to mold my purpose that living becomes fruitful.

Father, remind all your children who need to remember when we are prone to fighting for ourselves that Jesus’ victory belongs to us.  In all the ways, we deceive ourselves into believing we are in control, whisper that peaceful word that is too elusive in our hearts and minds-rest.  May we lay down all our plans, schemes and weapons intended to forge our plans for life and remember that You have already written our entire story with Your Sovereign Hands.  Father, I confess, I get overwhelmed by demanding days; tempting me to maximize myself and minimize you.  When I do this, chaos becomes my company, fear becomes my friend and anxiety becomes my advisor.  Quickly convict my heart and direct me back to Your promises, the only resivor of rest for riddled ragamuffins like me.  Amen.

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The Angel of Adversity

 

Perfect love permits pain.   1 John 4:8 says God is love.   God permits pain.   No one can estimate the profit of pain until we have journeyed far enough through it to see the distance we or our loved ones have traveled.   God being sovereign could stay our suffering, but it would stifle His ultimate purpose.   Only Divine love is steadfast and strong enough to allow the angel of adversity to remain until her work is done.   Whatever pain you or a loved one are carrying today, rest assured it has an eternal purpose.   It is not your job to understand it, just to stand still under it and believe God’s promises that have been given to you.
Father, I confess that the pervasiveness of pain and suffering around me sometimes leads me down resolving roads that maximize me and minimize You.   In my flesh, solving feels more productive than being still.   Remind us all today that it is in pain we find purpose and in stillness we discover strength. May we rest along the restless roads of life and leave the resolving to You, the true healer of all affliction. Amen.

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My Daily Prayer

108196178My Daily Prayer:
Jesus when loved ones are struggling, relationships are shaky; people are ailing, help me resist the desire to fix what is. May I remember that scrambling for solutions can become a form of control and unbelief. Keep me cognizant that it takes more courage and faith to release my most precious treasures to You, free of my clinging hands. Allow me to care without control, hold without hovering and support without suffocating all people and situations I encounter today, and each day forward. Jesus grant me the grace that enables me to rest not carefree, but confidently in your sovereignty amidst the backdrop of a broken world. Amen.