Christ’s Sacrifice for my Sins (EASTER)

Oh man… can’t we find ourselves in some predicaments in life sometimes??  When fumbles in life happen, when things I do go completely against what God is teaching me in the Bible, it just feels horrible, but admittedly, sometimes I’ll still make those fumbles.  Sometimes without meaning to, other times, I screw up completely and fully aware that I’m screwing up. Embarrassing to admit, but it happens. I think how in the world God can still love me after Read more…

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Breaking Down Walls (EASTER)

Working around construction and watching walls being torn down and new things being built in their place is exciting. It’s interesting when you think about it. Walls that have been there for so many years, all of a sudden come crashing down. Breaking down walls may seem like a daunting task to accomplish, but with the right leaders in charge and the proper tools being used, it becomes a success. A new day is dawning, getting rid of what doesn’t work anymore Read more…

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My Best Friend (EASTER)

When they arrived at the place where God had told him to go, Abraham built an altar and arranged the wood on it. Then he tied his son, Isaac, and laid him on the altar on top of the wood. And Abraham picked up the knife to kill his son as a sacrifice. At that moment the angel of the Lord called to him from heaven, “Abraham! Abraham!”
 
“Yes,” Abraham replied. “Here I am!”
 
“Don’t lay a hand on the boy!” the angel said. “Do not hurt him in any way, for now I know Read more…

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Good Friday

How ironic that the absolute worst day in Jesus’ life is known to us as “Good Friday”.  Mind you, I’m grateful that from our perspective it is a “good” day.  Jesus took MY place that day so I would never have to face the rightful judgment that MY sins deserve.  That is “good” for ME.
 
However, I don’t ever want to forget that there was nothing “good” about that Friday for Jesus.  His Friday started in the early hours when a mob arrived to arrest Him on false charges.  He was led away ALONE, as most of His best friends ran away.  The two disciples Read more…

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Dating God’s Way

As I go through life, I’m finding as I grow in Christ I’m setting a higher standard for myself when it comes to dating. No no, not in an arrogant way, but in a way that I know my worth in Christ and I know what He wants for me (His best), and I know what He wants me to look for as far as characteristics. Why would I not want to accept the standard He has set for me, His child?  Although the Bible doesn’t really talk about “Christian dating” in a direct way, we can look at God’s word and discern how we should approach “dating” in today’s world.
 
I’m finding that if I don’t set my standards in the right place right from the very beginning, that I’m going to have people that are not at my standard trying to enter my life (and this has happened). I’ve literally had to block a couple of people when it was clear that moving Read more…

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Perfect (Verb) Love

We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in His love.
 
God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. And as we live in God, our love grows more perfect. So we will not be afraid on the day of judgment, but we can face Him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world.
 
Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of Read more…

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Needing Others

Going through life thinking we can do things on our own without help from others is never a good good choice to make. We definitely need people in our lives to help guide us, teach us, strengthen us, and love us. Having people that we can count on to shine a light in our lives and let us know that we matter is good medicine for the heart. Having a circle of friends, whether it’s family or not, that you can lean on just helps your life run smoother. Sometimes we just need someone to talk to, someone who will listen and lead us in the right direction. Read more…

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Here Comes the Sun

“Here Comes The Sun” is an old “Beatles” song. It was part of the graduation video that was made for my daughter when she got out high school. The song is to remind us to let the sun rise everyday in our hearts. So whenever I have the opportunity to hear that song, I think of her. God gives us a brand new opportunity each day to let the sun shine in our hearts. Read more…

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Emotional Energy

Have you ever been so mentally exhausted that you just didn’t have the emotional energy to be around people, places or things? Just so much going on in life, you just didn’t need ONE MORE THING? I’m not talking about diagnosed depression or anxiety (that’s something entirely different), but just the emotional energy that can get sucked right out of you from time to time.
 
Recently, a friend that I normally hear from every day kind of dropped off the face of the earth. After a couple of days, I became a little concerned. I had been busy and figured the same for them, but reached out to make sure. Their response – “Hey, been dealing with real Read more…

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Distractions and Diversions

Have you ever had a non-Godly distraction in life that was counter-acted by a literal diversion from God? I experienced something earlier this year that once the smoke cleared, I could undoubtedly see God’s hand at work.
 
Earlier this year when I began dating again, two new guys unexpectedly entered my life nearly at the same time, but the first guy (in my opinion, when looking back) was definitely a wolf in sheep’s clothing. He was a really nice guy, but the more I got to know of him, the more I realized he was not acting in any way, shape or form like the Christian he professed to be. Maybe he WAS a Christian, I just didn’t see the fruits of his Christianity and his actions were not something that screamed “Christian”, but admittedly I found myself intrigued by his charm.  I gave him the benefit of the doubt, but as I did, I found myself getting sucked into the shiny newness, but I could feel and hear God giving me a clear “Red Flag” warning – almost like a finger snap in my ear – to beware. (I must add – it wasn’t a beware as in “safety” for me, it was a beware as in a “this is not something good for you”). For a bit, I still ignored God’s voice, but it became louder and louder – but the distraction of this person (which I still believe was the enemy at work through him – I’m sure without him even knowing) continued.
 
“A tree is identified by its fruit.  If a tree is good, its fruit will be good.  If a tree is bad, its fruit will be bad.” – Matthew 12:33NLT
 
This other guy entered my life just a few short days later. Now, when he (another professed Christian) showed up, I could see the fruits he had in the past and was currently cultivating. So, then I felt myself gravitating toward him because I knew he was a Godly man, and that’s my most important requirement when dating now – that whoever I date has a past with God, a current relationship with God, and is running after God.  All the while, God was reiterating to me how the other guy was just not someone who met my most important requirement.  Based on how everything happened, I truly feel this second man was sent to me by God to create a diversion to push me to cease contact with the first one.  I did – right away… and it felt amazing.  I was fully trusting God with something He’d asked me to do and it just felt amazing. 
 
Many times in my life, people have been positioned at the exact moment(s) to create these diversions, or to lead me closer to God and toward where I needed to be.  These diversions are imperative to keep me on the right path God has for me to follow. Isn’t that insane to think about? All I know is that my attention on the first man began to fade quickly – the shiny newness just fell away and it was like my eyes were opened that the situation there was not something I needed, nor should I be moving toward. I really do feel that God provided this diversion with this second person coming into my life for me to see my path more clearly – and it was up to me to take the correct path. As I stated above, I did. I know that was what God wanted me to do, and I think if it were a test, I passed it!
 
“I am saying this for your benefit, not to place restrictions on you.  I want you to do whatever will help you serve the Lord best, with as few distractions as possible. – 1 Corinthians 7:35 NLT
 
I’m finding it amazing how God can have someone enter my life simply to counter-act something the enemy was trying to do in my life with someone else. I’m so thankful that God uses diversions when we get distracted from Him to pull us back the right way. Yes, we can surely ignore them, like I did at first, but I’m so thankful that He keeps knocking and keeps letting us know when something isn’t right. I love knowing that if I begin to go astray, my Father in Heaven will gently reach down and guide me back to the path He has for me. I get an image in my head of a child and a dad, where the dad just positions his child the right way, and then gently pushes the child in that direction. I feel that’s what God did for me. I’m so thankful that I heeded the warning so quickly, as I’ve also found in life that if I don’t guide easily back toward where God is calling me, I’ve been known in the past to nearly get hit upside the head by a 2×4 from God – so I’m definitely thinking it’s best to heed His first calling and do it the easier way than the harder way – but hey, both ways are effective!
 
Things like this just solidify and strengthen my faith in God. Seeing how things play out in my life are so amazing when I’m able to look back over something that happened and realize how the enemy tried to get the best of me, but God safely guided me away from something that wasn’t good for me. I’m a proponent of saying “God wants to give me His best”, and it’s times like these that I’m reminded how true that statement is. I’m finding that consistency in my prayer, consistency in my walk with God and consistency in my involvement with my church and Christian brothers and sisters are helping me stay closer to God where I’m able to hear His still small voice. When things like this happen, it’s just solidifies how much God loves me and the lengths He’s willing to take when my path starts to go astray, swiftly leading me back to where I belong. The path where I belong is so important to Him, and He definitely goes out of His way to make sure I stay the course – even if He has to use that 2×4!
 
“You will be accepted if you do what is right.  But if you refuse to do what is right, then watch out!  Sin is crouching at the door, eager to control you.  But you must subdue it and be its master.” – Genesis 4:7 NLT
 
With God rooted in my life, and the more experience I get by walking with Him, I’m realizing how I can simply follow the peace of God so He can present to me His plan for my life. Nothing that I face today (or ever) is out of His control.
 
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*Dena*
 
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