April 16, 2014

About Tonya Ellison

Tonya Ellison — Blog Contributor
Tonya comes to us from Rio Rancho, New Mexico where she lives with her four favorite people, three kids ages 4, 6, and 9, and her husband of seven years, Jamel. Her hobbies include writing and reading, crocheting, and spending time with her family. She earned her BS in Human Services/Management and works as a Bereavement Counselor.

The Meaning of Mercy

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We have now entered the season of Lent.  For many Christians, Lent is taken as a time of preparation for the celebration of Easter where God miraculously redeemed mankind by resurrecting His Son from the dead. It is also a time to consider what Jesus said and did; and how we should be living in light of His Words.  ✞ ♥

During this season, here on the Seeking Him devotional blog, we have chosen to focus our devotionals on Jesus’ instructions and admonition communicated in Matthew chapter 5—the Beatitudes.  Jesus said, “Blessed are…” and He went on to give instruction as to how to be “blessed.”  To be ‘blessed’ is to ‘be happy, or to be envied.’   Truly for the Christian, we ARE blessed—oh, how very blessed we are!  Those who observe our lives should clearly be able to tell that we ARE blessed—and that we KNOW it! ✞ ♥

Please consider Jesus’ instructions along with us.  We pray that our words will encourage you and spur you on to be prepare your hearts for the joyous celebration of His Resurrection!  ✞ ♥

Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. 
Matthew 5:7 NIV

mer•ci•ful

: treating people with kindness and forgiveness: not cruel or harsh
: having or showing mercy
: giving relief from suffering

I like definitions.  I like to know the exact meaning of words because I think that a lot of words have been lost in translation.  And, despite the emotional power of words, I like to know the exact meaning in addition to the feeling they bring. Merciful is one of these words.  We know the general concept, but I think we often forget what this word really means.

  • Kindness
  • Forgiveness
  • Not cruel
  • Not harsh
  • Giving relief

Mercy takes another step past the feeling it brings and the words used to define it.   Mercy is something we can have and something we can show—merciful should be our way of life.  The thing I love about mercy is that throughout the day we are constantly presented with opportunities to offer mercy to others: while driving and we get cut off; to our snarky co-worker; to the person in a hurry who bumps into us on their way out; to our spouse; to our children.  Mercy isn’t reserved for the pure of heart, in fact it may be most effective on those we feel don’t deserve it.

There is another category of people who deserve our mercy—perhaps the hardest group to offer it to—ourselves.  When I’m working with patients dealing with guilt issues, I always remind them that in most cases it is hardest to forgive ourselves…hardest to show ourselves mercy.

This week I want to incorporate these words into my daily prayers; I want to be intentional in living and showing them to myself and others.  Not because I know what it feels like, or because I know what it means, but because Christ is merciful to me.  He showers mercy on me daily, and because of this I know that I can show it myself and I can show it to others.

Let’s pray:  Dear Heavenly Father, mercy is a common word, yet most of us don’t know what it truly means. Lord, please play these words over and over in our heads this week—”kindness…forgiveness…not cruel…not harsh…giving relief.”  Remind us of the times we were shown mercy and, because You have done so, we can and should do the same.  In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.

Biblical Common Sense

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We have now entered the season of Lent.  For many Christians, Lent is taken as a time of preparation for the celebration of Easter where God miraculously redeemed mankind by resurrecting His Son from the dead. It is also a time to consider what Jesus said and did; and how we should be living in light of His Words.  ✞ ♥

During this season, here on the Seeking Him devotional blog, we have chosen to focus our devotionals on Jesus’ instructions and admonition communicated in Matthew chapter 5—the Beatitudes.  Jesus said, “Blessed are…” and He went on to give instruction as to how to be “blessed.”  To be ‘blessed’ is to ‘be happy, or to be envied.’   Truly for the Christian, we ARE blessed—oh, how very blessed we are!  Those who observe our lives should clearly be able to tell that we ARE blessed—and that we KNOW it! ✞ ♥

Please consider Jesus’ instructions along with us.  We pray that our words will encourage you and spur you on to be prepare your hearts for the joyous celebration of His Resurrection!  ✞ ♥

God blesses those who hunger and thirst for justice, 
for they will be satisfied. 
Matthew 5:6

Every year for the past eleven years I have filled out a survey at my children’s annual physical checkup.  From ages 2-6, I am required to ask them the question, “What do you do when you’re hungry?”  Of course they respond with “Eat,” or “Ask for food,” things such as that.  I’ve always wondered why this question is asked…why such a common inquiry is made; even small children know what to do and how to respond.  But there must be a reason that each year we are reminded to quiz our children on such a simple thing, something we see as common and natural.

When I read this Scripture, I thought of this scenario.  We know we’re supposed to seek God and do as He commands and instructs; doing this leads to righteousness.  In a sense it is biblical common sense.  We hunger for God’s Word and for His guidance and love. and when we hunger, when we strive, we find righteousness.  Just as the pediatrician reminds us to look closely at common things, so does Christ.  Sometimes we become so engulfed in our life that we forget to consciously thirst for Christ and to be hungry for His word, His direction.  So He has given us reminders, such as these verses, to look at and to remind us.  This is more than an answer on a piece of paper.  It is a reminder that when we seek Him and when we thirst for him, He will fill us.  When we seek…we will find.  When we thirst…we will be filled.  Common sense, yes; but the reminders are much needed, much desired.

Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.
Matthew 7:7

He has filled the hungry with good things,
And the rich He has sent away empty
Luke 1:53

Let’s Pray:
Dear Heavenly Father, there are times we forget common things, like what to do when we’re hungry.  Like the pediatrician, You remind us of what we sometimes forget to see—that our thirst for You will lead to righteousness and that we will be filled when we hunger and thirst for Your Word.  Lord, remind us to seek You daily.  And to thirst for You always.  Increase our desire to be filled, so that we will not forget the common things, so that we will not forget to seek, and ask, to find and to hunger.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

Meekness…Not Easy but Desired by Christ

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We have now entered the season of Lent.  For many Christians, Lent is taken as a time of preparation for the celebration of Easter where God miraculously redeemed mankind by resurrecting His Son from the dead. It is also a time to consider what Jesus said and did; and how we should be living in light of His Words.  ✞ ♥

During this season, here on the Seeking Him devotional blog, we have chosen to focus our devotionals on Jesus’ instructions and admonition communicated in Matthew chapter 5—the Beatitudes.  Jesus said, “Blessed are…” and He went on to give instruction as to how to be “blessed.”  To be ‘blessed’ is to ‘be happy, or to be envied.’   Truly for the Christian, we ARE blessed—oh, how very blessed we are!  Those who observe our lives should clearly be able to tell that we ARE blessed—and that we KNOW it! ✞ ♥

Please consider Jesus’ instructions along with us.  We pray that our words will encourage you and spur you on to be prepare your hearts for the joyous celebration of His Resurrection!  ✞ ♥

Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
Matthew 5:5

Lately my children have been talking about some situations at school—injustices, bullies, teachers—that they feel have treated them unfairly.  We have encountered people in the world who are not as nice as we would like them to be…the secretary at the school, the cashier, the server at the restaurant.  And I feel like they are always looking at me to gauge my response and to see how I handle the not-so-cordial behavior of others.  And to be quite honest, a lot of the time, meek is not the word that initially comes to mind.

I’ve read several definitions of the word meek, “…gentle, self-control, tender, and free from pride” are a few that I have come across (like I said, most times this is not me).  So I find myself in a battle when I’m facing these situations and I have little eyes on me. And, no, this is not the first Scripture that comes to mind; but as I was reading through it, I realized that my meekness, or the lack thereof, is constantly on display.

After a disagreement with her teacher, my daughter asked what we were going to do about it.  My response was that there are times in life where you don’t do anything…you don’t fight or argue…and you give it to God and move forward.  Though she doesn’t fully understand this right now, someday she will.  When the Scripture says that ‘the meek…shall inherit the earth’ I like to think of it in the moment.   When I refrain from telling the person who upset me what my flesh wants to say, I’m inheriting the earth, not literally, but for that moment. I’m showing that, even though I could say something, I’m not going to.  I’m going to love them through the situation and move on.  I’m going to ‘Let go and let God’.

But seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added to you.

Matthew 6:33

For most, meekness does not come naturally. Seek first the Kingdom of God. In situations where your flesh is battling to share your thoughts with those who have wronged you, seek Him first.  Pray…go to God…and breathe.

Meekness isn’t easy; but it is desirable by Christ, and that makes it desirable to us.

Let’s Pray:  Lord, to be honest when I think of me being meek, I don’t see it.  I don’t see it in a lot of people these days, but I know it’s possible.  I know that we can operate in self-control, in submission, and in tenderness.  Lord, help us to remember to seek You first when our meekness feels threatened, and that this is another way in which we can display Your light to others.  In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

Jesus Understands Mourning

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We have now entered the season of Lent.  For many Christians, Lent is taken as a time of preparation for the celebration of Easter where God miraculously redeemed mankind by resurrecting His Son from the dead. It is also a time to consider what Jesus said and did; and how we should be living in light of His Words.  ✞ ♥

During this season, here on the Seeking Him devotional blog, we have chosen to focus our devotionals on Jesus’ instructions and admonition communicated in Matthew chapter 5—the Beatitudes.  Jesus said, “Blessed are…” and He went on to give instruction as to how to be “blessed.”  To be ‘blessed’ is to ‘be happy, or to be envied.’   Truly for the Christian, we ARE blessed—oh, how very blessed we are!  Those who observe our lives should clearly be able to tell that we ARE blessed—and that we KNOW it! ✞ ♥

Please consider Jesus’ instructions along with us.  We pray that our words will encourage you and spur you on to be prepare your hearts for the joyous celebration of His Resurrection!  ✞ ♥

Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. 
Matthew 5:4

Hospice.  This is a place where I live my days.  As a Bereavement Counselor, I can’t count the number of times that I have said these words of this Scripture.  Written them, printed them for a family member or a patient or myself even.  This Scripture is short and sweet.  The words touch hearts and minds, and remind those who read them that even themselves—the hurting, the scared—have not been forgotten by God. And that He took the time to let them know that He knows their hurt and that His hand is on their lives.

To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD,
And the day of vengeance of our God;
To comfort all who mourn.
Isaiah 61:2

Jesus knew what it was like to have a broken heart.  He, Himself, wept.  He hurt, He cried, and He shed tears.  He knows.

Now as He drew near, He saw the city and wept over it,
Luke 19:41

Therefore, when Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her weeping,
He groaned in the spirit and was troubled.
John 11:33

Jesus wept.
John 11:35

The word mourn is most commonly tied with death…with the loss of a loved one, but that’s not the only case.  We can mourn any loss.  Death as well as the loss of a job, of a friendship, of a dream, a divorce, anything.  And in any case of loss or mourning, He will be there to comfort us, to love us, and to carry us through it.  My Study Bible pointed out something that I never thought of before.  It spotlighted the fact that in order to mourn something, we need to have a sensitive heart, and we need to have a tender heart.  These are two characteristics that are Christ-like.  So, when we mourn, we work towards developing these characteristics, another example of God working all things for our good.

* ~ ♥ ~ ✞ ~ ♥~ *

Let’s Pray:  Dear Heavenly Father, mourning hurts…loss hurts.  Without You, I don’t know how we would cope with the losses we face.  Thank You for the gentle reminder of Your love and of Your comfort.  Thank You for showing us Your Son’s realness in sharing the times when He wept and when He hurt, reminding us that there is no wrong in shedding tears.  Blessed are we, when we mourn, for we will be comforted.  In Jesus’ name, we pray, Amen.

Fully Dependent on God

SeekingHimLogoWe have now entered the season of Lent.  For many Christians, Lent is taken as a time of preparation for the celebration of Easter where God miraculously redeemed mankind by resurrecting His Son from the dead. It is also a time to consider what Jesus said and did; and how we should be living in light of His Words.  ✞ ♥

During this season, here on the Seeking Him devotional blog, we have chosen to focus our devotionals on Jesus’ instructions and admonition communicated in Matthew chapter 6—the Beatitudes.  Jesus said, “Blessed are…” and He went on to give instruction as to how to be “blessed.”  To be ‘blessed’ is to ‘be happy, or to be envied.’  Truly for the Christian, we ARE blessed—oh, how very blessed we are!  Those who observe our lives should clearly be able to tell that we ARE blessed—and that we KNOW it! ✞ ♥

Please consider Jesus’ instructions along with us.  We pray that our words will encourage you and spur you on to be prepare your hearts for the joyous celebration of His Resurrection!  ✞ ♥

Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.
Matthew 5:3

In the same sense that we can be rich in many areas—money, family, friends, love, etc.—we can also be poor in other areas of our life aside from finances.  I think for people who strive for excellence, the terms poor and weak are not words we take lightly or accept willingly.  When in reality they are not as negative as we think. When we are poor in spirit we are fully dependent on God.  Now this doesn’t mean that we need to be at the lowest place in our life or depressed or unhappy but it does mean that we acknowledge that without God we have nothing.

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

When we say we’re weak, it doesn’t mean that we can’t handle where our lives may be or that we can’t deal with what we currently have on our plate.  What it does mean is that we are able to acknowledge that without God…we have no strength; because He is our strength, and in our weakness and dependence on Him…His strength prevails.

How wonderful is it to know and accept that we can be weak?  That we can be poor and still be covered by His love?  That we can be these things and be carried by our Heavenly Father?  That we don’t have to worry about our own strength and love carrying us through life because His strength and His love are far more than we need.

Let’s Pray:  Dear Heavenly Father, please help us to accept our weakness, our poor spirits, because when we accept these, Lord, we embrace Your Strength instead of trying to grow our own.  And when we accept Your rich love, instead of our own, we will experience a freedom like no other.  Thank You Lord for Your loving strength.  In Jesus’ name, amen.

Mercy

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Praise the LORD!
Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good!
For His mercy endures forever.
Who can utter the mighty acts of the LORD?
Who can declare all His praise?
Psalms 106:1-2

According to the Random House Dictionary, the word mercy is defined as follows:

mer•cy

1. compassionate or kindly forbearance shown toward an offender, an enemy, or other person in one’s power; compassion, pity, or benevolence: Have mercy on the poor sinner.
2. the disposition to be compassionate or forbearing: an adversary wholly without mercy.
3. the discretionary power of a judge to pardon someone or to mitigate punishment, especially to send to prison rather than invoke the death penalty.
4. an act of kindness, compassion, or favor: She has performed countless small mercies for her friends and neighbors.
5. something that gives evidence of divine favor; blessing: It was just mercy we had our seat belts on when it happened.

I know what the Biblical concept of mercy is.  But, I wanted to know the actual definition of the word—compassion, kindness, favor, blessing.  This is what God gives us despite our actions, despite or lack of actually earning these things from Him.  We’re instructed to give thanks because of the fact that we have not earned them, and not only does He bestow the blessing of mercy on us but “His mercy endures Forever!” It isn’t a one-time occurrence, but forever.

I tried to search and see how many times the word mercy was used in the bible, my search came up with anywhere between 170 and 262; so, basically, a lot.  I didn’t find the actual count, but I did find something interesting.  The word mercy is often paired with another word—whether it is love, truth, or grace—but mercy is usually not found alone.  My search showed me something else as well (similar to not being able to find the total number of times mercy is found in the Bible)—I wouldn’t ever be able to tell someone how many times I have seen God’s mercy in my life.

Who can utter the mighty acts of the LORD?
Who can declare all His praise?

I couldn’t even began to try.  There are hundreds, even thousands, of times where He has bestowed His mercy on my life and on the lives of my friends and family.  Trying to think of the number overwhelms me, it shows just how much He loves me…how MUCH He loves us.  It sometimes worries me that I won’t have an answer if I’m asked what God has done for me—there is so much that I wonder if I would know where to start.   So I am going to try something, not just when someone asks, but I am going to start today…now.  I am going to thank God for what he has done today—for waking me up, for making sure there is a roof over my head, for life, mine and the lives of my family, for a sound mind, for a healthy body.

I want to make an intentional effort to thank the Lord…to acknowledge Him for the countless acts of mercy I have seen in my life.

Let’s Pray:  Dear Heavenly Father, I don’t even know where to start when it comes to saying thank You, there is no way I could address everything You have done for me, but I want to be intentional in thanking You daily for what You do for me, for my family.  Your mercy is very present in our lives, and for this I thank you.  In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

No Good Thing Withheld

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O LORD God of hosts, hear my prayer; give ear, O God of Jacob! Selah.
O God, behold our shield, and look upon the face of Your anointed.
For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere.
I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness.
For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD will give grace and glory;
No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.
O LORD of hosts, blessed is the man who trusts in You!
Psalms 84:8-12

My son turned eight the other day and, like most kids, he started planning his birthday 364 days prior to the actual day.  This year he seemed worried about the festivities surrounding his big day.  So one day I asked him if we had ever forgotten about his birthday, or if he had ever not had a good celebration.  He thought about it and said ‘no.’

Reading today’s Scripture passage reminded me that we often worry about things in our life.  These things may be larger than a birthday party.  It could be a relationship, financial concerns, and some days it might even be a need for a good parking space. Our Heavenly Father reassures us that He will never hold anything good back.  Like we parent our children—we want them to have the good things in life.  God wants us to have the good in life.  When we walk uprightly, our Father makes sure we have that good: grace, glory, and some days a good parking space.

And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God,
to those who are the called according to His purpose.
Romans 8:28

Remember it says in this verse, “all things,” not some things, not the things we see as good or not good, but all things.  When my son continued to worry about his birthday it was because it wasn’t his turn to plan his party just yet.  You see, our daughter’s birthday falls less than a month before my son’s; and it is our family rule that the person with the birthday before yours is given the opportunity to be the special birthday kid before the next birthday is planned.  It was a timing issue.  After being reminded of this—and reassured that he would have his time soon—he relaxed and enjoyed his sisters’ day.

No, God will not withhold good from us and, yes, He will turn everything to good.  But He will do it in His time, in the right time.  So as my son enjoyed his sisters’ day, I try to remember another line of these beautiful words from this passage: “For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere,” even if that day, or those days, are spent waiting and soaking in His grace and Glory.

Let’s pray: Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for Your promises.  In those days of waiting and wanting we can sometimes began to ask questions about when it will be our turn for the good to come.  Your reassuring words remind us that You haven’t forgotten, that You have our good planned for us and that, when the time is right, You will reveal it to us.  Until that happens, please remind us to walk in patience, and to focus on Your glory, and bask in Your grace.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.

I Love the Lord Because….

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I love the LORD, because He has heard my voice and my supplications.
Because He has inclined His ear to me, therefore I will call upon Him as long as I live.
The pains of death surrounded me, and the pangs of Sheol laid hold of me;
I found trouble and sorrow.
Then I called upon the name of the LORD: “O LORD, I implore You, deliver my soul!”
Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; yes, our God is merciful.
The LORD preserves the simple; I was brought low, and He saved me.
Return to your rest, O my soul, for the LORD has dealt bountifully with you.
Psalms 116:1-7

  • I found trouble and sorrow…then I called upon the name of the Lord.” How great of a feeling is this!?  Knowing that we can call on His name. Knowing that He is there…He is righteous, He is merciful.  Knowing He will save us.  I think back and I try to count how many times I call out for God’s help during the day.  From the morning when I pray for patience with my kids, to the workday when I pray for guidance when interacting with people, to the evening when I pray for energy to finish my tasks of the day.  I know I can call on Him.
  • The pains of death surrounded me,”  When I read this line of the psalm, my mind began running through all of the areas in life that we face a type of death: physical death is the first, of course; but we also face emotional death, loss of relationships, loss of jobs and income, loss of belongings. All of these can feel like a type of death, and pain accompanies all of them.
  • I was brought low, and He saved me.”  When I call on Him, He saves me. When I feel loss, He saves me.  This may not look how I expected it to, but it is always what I need.  This passage ultimately says two things: we are going to feel pain in life and we are going to feel loss, but despite this we will always be able to call to Him and He will always be there to hear our voice.

* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *

Let’s Pray: Dear Heavenly Father, ‘thank You’ doesn’t begin to express how appreciative we are of Your love, and of the fact that You hear us at our lowest times.  Not only do You hear us but You step in and help…You intervene and do what is best for us.  Thank You, Father.  In Jesus’ name we pray.  Amen.

His Way Is Perfect

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As for God, His way is perfect;
The word of the LORD is proven;
He is a shield to all who trust in Him.
For who is God, except the LORD?
And who is a rock, except our God?
It is God who arms me with strength,
And makes my way perfect.
Psalms 18:30-32

“Mom! its not working!”  “Guys, how are you doing it?”  As my boys proceed to tell me how they are using the way they devised (I don’t even know how they came up with this method), I chuckle to myself, knowing that it wouldn’t work, and knowing that this was going to happen.  They weren’t going to do it the way I suggested they do it because I have given birth to the most independent and stubborn boys in the world.  Who knew that lining books back into a bookshelf could be so difficult?

This isn’t new, all three of my children have the “I’m going to try it my way first,” mentality when they set out to accomplish tasks.  Many times the end result is less than what we all hoped for.  Similar situations are seen in the daily lives of most parents, even our Heavenly Father.  His children are stubborn, we like to try it our way.  He tells us or shows how to do something and we turn around and do it how we see fit, and  the outcome is always less than we hoped for.

Though my ways are far from perfect, my boys have learned that they may work  better.  But His ways are perfect, and when we follow His ways, He will shield us from the unpleasant side effects of trying our own ways first.  Thankfully God is forgiving, and we get do-overs.  He gives us chance after chance to do it His way.  Time after time, He has shown me that His Word is proven.  Time and time again He has been my Shield, my Strength, and my Rock.  He has done so even when I tried my way first…when I didn’t trust Him as I should have.  He was waiting for me, His arms outstretched, ready to show that His words rang true.

* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *

Let’s Pray:  Dear Heavenly Father, You know better than we do that we don’t always do things Your way, yet You love us regardless.  We fight, we argue, we do things how we want to.  But You are always there, arms outstretched.  Always our Shield, always our Rock, always our Strength.  Thank You.  In Jesus name, we pray, Amen.

He is Our Help and Our Shield

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Behold, the eye of the LORD is on those who fear Him, on those who hope in His mercy,
To deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine.
Our soul waits for the LORD; He is our help and our shield.
For our heart shall rejoice in Him, because we have trusted in His holy name.
Let Your mercy, O LORD, be upon us, just as we hope in You.
Psalms 33:18-22

In November I started studying for my Master’s degree.  And, knowing this would not be the easiest task I set out to accomplish, I began to pray and seek God in this decision because it would be a commitment from myself and my family. I turned to the Psalms because of the message it speaks to the hearts of God’s children. I needed hope, I needed reassurance, and I needed to feel God’s love in all of this.

There are many aspects of David’s Psalms that I truly enjoy! Not only do I enjoy the words, but thrive on them when I go to read them. His soothing words are filled with love and peace, while also reminding me of the realness of the world we live in. The beauty of his songs helps to remind us that what we’ve been looking for our entire lives—hope, security, and joy—are actually gifts given to us by God. Gifts that we haven’t had to search for…gifts that we are entitled to because we are sons and daughters of the Most High.

He IS our Help and our Shield. For our heart shall rejoice in Him.

So many changes happen in our lives on a daily basis that the reassurance of these words is almost necessary, and the great thing is that we don’t have to look far. We simply need to open up the manual He gave us and read. Soak in the words He gave to David and allow the hope, security and joy that flow from the pages.
On the nights when I am up writing papers while my house sleeps peacefully, I remember that He is right next to me, {He is my Help and my Shield}. When I am at the grocery store figuring out what to make for dinner, along with all of the other moms in the city, {He is my Help and my Shield}. When I am at work, and the tired feeling sets in, {He is my Help and my Shield}. There isn’t any area of life where He isn’t present.
In the tougher times, as well as on great days, remind yourself {He is my Help and my Shield}.  Open to this Scripture passage and remember that God is always present and always on our side.

Let’s pray: Lord, the things You do for us cannot be counted.  The love You give and the hope and security You provide can never be duplicated by anyone or anything.  Thank You for Your hope and Your love.  Thank You for being our Help and our Shield.  In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.