September 25, 2017

Thankful Representatives

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And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts.
For as members of one body you are called to live in peace.
And always be thankful.
Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives.
Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom He gives.
Sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts.
And whatever you do or say,
do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus,

giving thanks through Him to God the Father.
Colossians 3:15-17 NLT

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According to Google.com, a representative is “a person chosen or appointed to act or speak for another or others.”  And at Dictionary.com it is also defined as “a typical example or specimen of a group, quality, or kind.”

This passage of Scripture gives us a lot to consider.  As one chosen by God, we, as Christians, are to represent Christ Jesus to those around us.  We are to be a “typical example of His quality.”  And how do we do that?  “Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives” (verse 16).

What is “the message about Christ?”  It is the message that God loves us so much that “He gave His Son, His one and only Son.  And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in Him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life” (John 3:16 MSG).  Does that good news fill your heart with thankfulness and joy to the point of singing?  It does mine!

“If thankfulness becomes a way of life, it will make it much easier to maintain a state of peace.  It helps us look on the bright side instead of focusing upon the events which can disturb our calm [our inner peace.]”

quote taken from The Complete Biblical Library,
The New Testament Study Bible Galatians through Philemon

God’s quality and quantity of love is beyond measure.  God is not asking us to “be Him” [which we know is impossible], but He is asking us to live and love “like Him.” When we choose to be the representative He wants us to be and in the place He wants us to be, we will have His peace.

In Philippians 4:1-9, Paul told Euodia and Syntyche to settle their disagreements, and he told the church to help them.  Paul wanted them to experience the joy and peace that God desires for His people, and to be the representatives God wanted them to be. When we live in peace, joy, thankfulness, and God’s wisdom, we will be representatives that show the world around us our God of love. With thankful hearts, we can sing, speak, and do that which draws others to Christ, and that also strengthens our sisters (and brothers) in Christ.

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

A life that is full of Christ’s peace and His Word
is a life that is thankful, and rich and wise.
It will enrich everyone around you. Thank You, Lord.

(Many years ago I wrote this note in the margin of my Bible; I still believe it today.)

*   ~   ♥   ~    ✞    ~   ♥   ~   *

Dear Lord Jesus, we come to You with thankful hearts.  Your Word—Your Good News—fills our lives with wisdom, peace, and joy.  Those are qualities people around us are looking for in their lives.  Lord, please help us to be Your representatives so that others will be drawn to You.  May our thanksgiving during this season of the year (and everyday) make people curious enough to ask why so we can share You with them.  In Jesus’ Name we pray, Amen.

I Can Pray

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I may never sing a song that brings people to their feet
And mighty men of world renown I may never get to meet
But I have an invitation to hasten to His throne
To lay my burdens at His feet and make my petitions known

I can pray
Though the storm around me rages
I can trust the Rock of ages when I pray
And the peace I can’t explain when I call upon His Name
I just know I’m not the same when I pray

When it seems the road I’m trav’ling on just doesn’t have an end
I have found that He will be my brother and my friend
For He never will forsake me; He will always hear my plea
Because He stands beside the Father, interceding just for me

If my people
Who are called by My Name
Will humble themselves
Will humble themselves and pray

Singer/ Songwriter: Kim Culpepper
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I heard this song several months ago, and it spoke to me.  I put it in my ‘maybe’ list of songs to blog, not knowing when or if I was to share it.  Over the past two months a 16 year old young man in our church has been struggling with a deadly illness and has been through several brains surgeries already, with the almost certain need for more.  Our congregation, friends and family, both near and far, are praying for this boy!  What more can we do?!

Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ.
Galatians 6:2

Instead of worrying, pray.
Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers,
letting God know your concerns.
Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness,
everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down.
It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.
Philippians 4:6-7 MSG

The songs I sing will never bring people to their feet, and won’t heal Zach.  The mighty men of world renown can visit him at his hospital bedside, but they can’t heal Zach.  This road that Zach and his family are traveling on seems to have no end.  This is a storm that is too great for any human to conquer.  Perhaps you, too, (physically, emotionally, or spiritually), are on a rugged road that seems to have no end, and are in a storm too great to conquer.

BUT GOD!  Each of us has an invitation to hasten to the Throne of the One and Only God, the Rock of Ages, Who can do anything, including heal our dear Zach and calm your storm. That is exactly what Zach’s parents, and we are doing daily, even moment-by-moment, and I encourage you to do the same.

Where else can we find peace?
Who else assures us that He hears our prayers?
Who else promises to never leave us or forsake us?
Who else can calm the storm?
Who else can heal Zach?
Who else can smooth your road?
No one, BUT GOD!

So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God.
There we will receive His mercy,
and we will find grace to help us when we need it most.
Hebrews 14:16 NLT

Trust in the LORD always, for the LORD God is the eternal Rock.
Isaiah 26:4

Trust in Him at all times, you people;
pour out your hearts to Him, for God is our Refuge.
Psalm 62:8

As one song says, “Our God is an awesome God, Who reigns in Heaven above, with wisdom, power, and love, our God is an awesome God.”  With that assurance, we run into God’s Throne Room, and lay our “burdens at His feet and make my (our) petitions known.”

It is there

  • we have the assurance that He hears our prayers
  • we know that Jesus is interceding before our Father for us
  • we find our peace
  • we find our answers
  • we are “not the same when I (we) pray.”

If God is for us, who can be against us?
He who did not spare His own Son but gave Him up for us all,
how will He not also with Him graciously give us all things?…
Christ Jesus is the One who died
—more than that, Who was raised—
Who is at the right hand of God, Who indeed is interceding for us….
Romans 8:31-39

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Whatever your storm is today, dear friend, believe that Jesus wants you to come to Him with it.  Believe He will take care of your need, no matter what is it.  When you can’t do anything else, YOU CAN PRAY.  And we, your sisters in Christ, will pray with you.  Jesus is waiting and listening…and answering.

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

You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in You.
Isaiah 26:3

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give you.
I do not give to you as the world gives.
Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
John 14:27

In Christ Alone

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In Christ alone my hope is found; He is my Light, my Strength, my Song;
This Cornerstone, this solid ground, firm through the fiercest drought and storm.
What heights of love, what depths of peace, when fears are stilled, when strivings cease!
My Comforter, my all in all—here in the love of Christ I stand.

In Christ alone, Who took on flesh, Fullness of God in helpless babe!
This gift of love and righteousness, scorned by the ones He came to save.
‘Til on that Cross as Jesus died, the wrath of God was satisfied;
For ev’ry sin on Him was laid—here in the death of Christ I live.

There in the ground His body lay, Light of the world by darkness slain;
Then bursting forth in glorious day up from the grave He rose again!
And as He stands in victory, sin’s curse has lost its grip on me;
For I am His and He is mine—bought with the precious blood of Christ.

No guilt in life, no fear in death—this is the pow’r of Christ in me;
From life’s first cry to final breath, Jesus commands my destiny.
No pow’r of hell, no scheme of man can ever pluck me from His hand;
‘Til He returns or calls me home—here in the pow’r of Christ I’ll stand.

Keith and Krystin Getty and Band
written by Keith Getty & Stuart Townend

*  ~  ♥  ~  ✞  ~  ♥  ~  *

The words of a song can be so stirring!  For myself, I have found hymns to have this effect on me.  A choir director once told me that hymns are songs that “are soaked in doctrinal truth.”  One definition of hymns says that they are “… songs that help teach faith.”  What we sing through this type of song can profoundly affect how we think and feel.  And each of us have our own favorite hymns and choruses…they come to mean so much to our hearts!  This song, In Christ Alone, is considered a modern-day hymn. It contains such foundational truth.

Take for example, the very first three words of this song, “In Christ alone…” You could say them in other ways, too—‘only Jesus…’ ‘Jesus is everything to me…’ ‘You, Lord, JUST You…’

The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.
For in Him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth,
visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities;
all things have been created through Him and for Him.
He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.
And He is the head of the body, the church;
He is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead,
so that in everything He might have the supremacy.
Colossians 1:15-18

In and through Jesus we have been given so very much!  He truly is our ‘Light… (John 8:12), our Strength… (Psalms 28:7 and 8), our Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:5 and 6)!’

I just love to sing these next lines of this song; they are so beautiful!

What heights of love, what depths of peace,
when fears are stilled, when strivings cease!

My Comforter, my All in All, here in the love of Christ I stand.

Through Jesus, also, we have love (Romans 8:38 and 39), peace (Philippians 4:7), comfort (Psalm 46:10)!  He IS our ‘All in All.’

And when all things shall be subdued unto him,
then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him
that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.
1 Corinthians 15:28

In Jesus our hope, our trust, our constant assurance is in the right place—on the solid foundation of who we are in Christ.  In my own life I seem to need continual reminding  to not let my feelings get in the way or my circumstances be allowed to dictate my actions.  But, as we (I!) stand firmly on the unchangeable truths of the gospel of Christ, our (my!) faith is being continuously built.

This hope we have as an anchor of the soul,
a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil,
where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us….
Hebrews 6:19 and 20

*  ~  ♥  ~  ✞  ~  ♥  ~  *

How about you?  Do the words of this beautiful hymn evoke a response in your heart when you hear them?  (I would so LOVE to ‘hear’ your answer in the comments below.)

This Week…PEACE (Advent, week two)

SHpeaceluke1

Here on the Seeking Him blog this past week, we have focused on the subject of PEACE as part of our Advent devotionals.  Jesus came to be our peace…to bring the peace that comes from redeeming us from sin.  Here are some excerpts from this week’s devotionals…

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Tina reminded us in Sweet Peace of the angels’ words to the shepherds.

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace among men in whom He is well pleased. And it came to pass, when the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing that is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. And they came with haste, and found both Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in the manger. And when they saw it, they made known concerning the saying which was spoken to them about this Child. And all that heard it wondered at the things which were spoken unto them by the shepherds. But Mary kept all these sayings, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, even as it was spoken unto them.
Luke 2:13-20 ASV

In her devotional, Peace Which Passes Understanding, Ann encouraged us to remember the following promise.

And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding,
shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:7

 

Ahmee also reminded us of another of God’s promises…of great comfort in Peace, Be Still

Be still, and know that I am God!
Psalm 46:10a

 

Writing on the Prince of Peace, Cynda shared with us the prophecy that Isaiah spoke about the coming Messiah.

For to us a Child is born, to us a Son is given;
and the government shall be upon His shoulder,
and His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor,
Mighty God, Everlasting Father [of Eternity], Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 9:6 AMP

At the conclusion of their devotionals,Tina, Cynda, Ann, and Ahmee each shared a beautiful prayer or a blessing; and I thought it would be a joy to revisit them here at the end of the week.

May the Lord turn His face toward you
and give you peace this Christmas season and all year long.
2 Thessalonians 3:16

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Ephesians 1:2

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Father, we pray for Your peace during the Christmas season.  We want to understand and learn about You and Your Son in a new and unexpected way.  Holy Spirit, open our eyes and hearts to receive You in a new and exciting way.  Let us have a new passion for Your word and Your ways, Lord.  In Jesus’ name we pray and ask these things, amen.

~   ♥   ~

Rest.
Be at peace.
Then ask the Lord what’s next so that you can tackle all you need to
…but at peace.

~   ♥   ~

Lord, I thank You for the peace that passes all understanding.  I thank You for the peace I have within that is moving me from one level of glory to another.  I really appreciate You, Abba Father, for this is not unto me alone, it is also to my friends who are reading this devotion.

May You give us the grace of increased faith in You which will bring peace into our hearts.  May our hope be in You as You are PEACE Yourself, Lord.  Blessed be Your name now and forever more.  In Jesus’ name, I pray.

Amen!!!

Prince of Peace

SHpeaceluke1

For to us a Child is born, to us a Son is given;
and the government shall be upon His shoulder,
and His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor,
Mighty God, Everlasting Father [of Eternity], Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 9:6 AMP

Glory to God in the highest [heaven],
and on earth peace among men
with whom He is well pleased [men of goodwill, of His favor].
Luke 2:14 AMP

Peace can be very elusive this time of year.  In some ways this has been a rough year for us—we lost our darling granddaughter five days after her birth.  This time of year is particularly hard.  Perhaps you, too, have suffered the death of a loved one or a major loss…loss of a relationship, job, home.

Maybe stress is stealing your peace right now.  {I must admit I have let a little stress sneak in as well.}  Our daughters live in other states so we don’t get to spend as much time with them as we would like.  However, they will be coming here after Christmas.  I want to have the perfect gifts for them.  I want to make wonderful memories while they are here.  And that gets me a little frantic and a bit stressed out. When the cares of this world weigh me down Romans 8:6 reminds me that,

For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace

So, how do we have this peace that seems so elusive?  The peace Romans 8:6 refers to comes only from Christ and passes all understanding.  There are so many wonderful scriptures that reiterate this.  Take a minute to read through these slowly and carefully.  And let their meaning sink deep into your heart and mind.

In peace I will both lie down and sleep,
For You alone, O Lord, make me to dwell in safety.
Psalm 4:8 NASB

The Lord gives His people strength; the Lord blesses His people with peace.
Psalm 29:11 HCSB

You will keep the mind that is dependent on You in perfect peace
Isaiah 26:3 HCSB

…The chastisement {punishment} [needful to obtain] peace
and well-being for us was upon Him,
and with the stripes [that wounded] Him we are healed and made whole.
Isaiah 53:5b AMP

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart.
And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give.
So don’t be troubled or afraid.”
John 14:27 NLT

In John 16:33 (HCSB) Jesus tells us “I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace.  You will have suffering in this world.  Be courageous!  I have conquered the world.”  As I was writing this, the words of a Castings Crowns song came to mind – “It’s all because of the blood of Jesus Christ!”  Truth!  We cannot do it alone.

Christ IS our Prince of Peace.  His birth was a step towards peace.  He came voluntarily, knowing what lay ahead of Him.  I do not want to be guilty of rejecting His gift that cost so much.

*   ♥  ~  ✝  ~  ★    *

Today, I would like to leave you with Philippians 4:7 as my prayer because God puts it much more eloquently than I can.

Dear Lord, please let Your peace, which surpasses all comprehension, guard our hearts and our minds in Christ Jesus.  Amen – It Is So!

~   ♥   ~

May the Lord turn His face toward you
and give you peace this Christmas season and all year long.
2 Thessalonians 3:16

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Ephesians 1:2

My Lighthouse

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In my wrestling and in my doubts
In my failures You won’t walk out
Your great love will lead me through
You are the peace in my troubled sea
You are the peace in my troubled sea

In the silence, You won’t let go
In the questions Your truth will hold
Your great love will lead me through
You are the peace in my troubled sea
You are the peace in my troubled sea

My Lighthouse, my Lighthouse
Shining in the darkness, I will follow You
My Lighthouse, my Lighthouse
I will trust the promise
You will carry me safe to shore 
Safe to shore
Safe to shore 
Safe to shore

I won’t fear what tomorrow brings
With each morning I’ll rise and sing
My God’s love will lead me through
You are the peace in my troubled sea
You are the peace in my troubled sea

Fire before us, You’re the brightest
You will lead us through the storms

Songwriters/Performers: The Rend Collective Experiment

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God is our Lighthouse. He will lead us through the storms safely back to shore. He is the Light shining in the darkness. We must continue to keep our eyes focused on Him and His faithfulness in ALL things. The Light always shines on the darkness of life.

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
Psalm 119:105 ESV

I love Will Caldwell’s insight on God as our Lighthouse…

The Lord is as my lighthouse;
And I shall not lose my course.
He shows me the deep channel;
And guides me into the safe harbor
Where repairs are made to my hull.
The Lord does this;
It befits His name.

Though I sail past the horizon,
I fear no storm – I remember Your goodness.
The memory of You, Your guidance – I keep them close.

When I return to Your shores, there is the clear beacon,
A sure light spread before me:
Illumination to grace my path.
Only for Your brilliance will I look
All the days of my life.
And as long as I may sail,
I shall return to this alcove *

God is the Illumination that will grace our path but it is His Brillance that we must be looking for.  If we focus in on the storm instead of the Light we will lose our focus.  His Truth will hold if we venture off course and His love will lead you through.

It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal.

Revelation 21:11 NIV

God is the peace to hold onto in our troubled seas…

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

God is the light and in Him there is no darkness at all (as 1 John 1:5 ESV tells us).

* ~ ♥ ~ ✞ ~ ♥ ~ *

Gracious Heavenly Father, thank You that in our troubled seas You are the source of Light that will bring us safely back to shore.  I thank You that Your peace will lead us through.  May we keep our focus on You…in Jesus’ Name. AMEN!!!

 

* Psalm 23: A Modern Reading  http://www.js.emory.edu/BLUMENTHAL/psalm%2023%20Will.htm

The Joy Of The Lord

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~  Listen while you read, please!  ~

The joy of the Lord will be my strength
I will not falter, I will not faint
He is my Shepherd, I am not afraid
The joy of the Lord is my strength

The joy of the Lord, the joy of the Lord, the joy of the Lord is my strength

The joy of the Lord will be my strength
He will uphold me all of my days
I am surrounded by mercy and grace
And the joy of the Lord is my strength

The joy of the Lord will be my strength
And I will not waiver, walking by faith
He will be strong to deliver me safe
And the joy of the Lord is my strength

~  Singer, Songwriter – Twila Paris  ~

* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *

♬ ♪  The joy of the Lord will be my strength,  I will not falter I will not faint ♪ ♬…. “But Lord, how can that be?  I don’t like my circumstances!  How can I be joyful in the midst of the toughest of places.”  This is the question I have asked God in some of my most difficult of circumstances.

I have survived a domestically violent first marriage.  I have walked through 2 ½ years of unemployment.  I have had a son in need of healing from a seizure/sleep disorder and you know what I have found?  Even when I don’t like my circumstances, it IS possible to find joy!  However it is ONLY found in God.  And it is NOT based on my circumstances.  It is only found when you have your eyes focused on Him and take them off of your circumstances.

Here are a few things God promises in the midst of difficult times:

WHAT THE ENEMY INTENDED FOR EVIL
GOD WILL TURN IT FOR YOUR GOOD

Romans 8:28
And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those
who love God and are called according to His purpose for them.

Isaiah 54:17
…No weapon formed against you shall prosper.

Some of my toughest circumstances are among some of my most powerful testimonies.  God has been faithful in each and every one of them.  Sisters, He is ALWAYS faithful!!!  As long as you have God, you have ALL that you need to get through ANY storm that may come your way.  Will you choose to trust Him in the midst of it?  When you choose Him, this is what He promises:

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

I am living proof that the peace of God which surpasses ALL understanding is very real!!!  I have experienced it firsthand in the toughest of places.

 * ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *

Heavenly Father, I pray for my sisters reading this and ask that they would choose to take their eyes off their circumstances and instead choose to fix their eyes upon Jesus and “look full in His wonderful face and <then> the things of this world will grow strangely dim.”  And then they can sing just like the song says, Lord,  ‘The joy of the Lord will be my strength and I will not waiver, walking by faith!  He will be strong to deliver me safe and the joy of the Lord is my strength!’  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!!!!

In Christ Alone

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

 ~  Listen while you read, please!  ~

In Christ alone my hope is found; He is my Light, my Strength, my Song;
This Cornerstone, this solid ground, firm through the fiercest drought and storm.
What heights of love, what depths of peace, when fears are stilled, when strivings cease!
My Comforter, my all in all—here in the love of Christ I stand.

In Christ alone, Who took on flesh, Fullness of God in helpless babe!
This gift of love and righteousness, scorned by the ones He came to save.
‘Til on that Cross as Jesus died, the wrath of God was satisfied;
For ev’ry sin on Him was laid—here in the death of Christ I live.

There in the ground His body lay, Light of the world by darkness slain;
Then bursting forth in glorious day up from the grave He rose again!
And as He stands in victory, sin’s curse has lost its grip on me;
For I am His and He is mine—bought with the precious blood of Christ.

No guilt in life, no fear in death—this is the pow’r of Christ in me;
From life’s first cry to final breath, Jesus commands my destiny.
No pow’r of hell, no scheme of man can ever pluck me from His hand;
‘Til He returns or calls me home—here in the pow’r of Christ I’ll stand.

 

~  In Christ Alone; words and music by Keith Getty & Stuart Townend  ~

 *   *   *   *   *

The words of a song can be so stirring!  Particularly, I have found hymns to have this effect on me.  A choir director once told me that hymns are songs that “are soaked in doctrinal truth.”  One definition of hymns says that they are “… songs that help teach faith.”  What we sing through this type of song can profoundly affect how we think and feel.  And each of us have our own favorite hymns and choruses…they come to mean so much to our hearts!  This song, In Christ Alone, is considered a modern-day hymn. It contains such foundational truth.

For example, the very first three words of this song, “In Christ alone…” You could say them in other ways, too—‘only Jesus…’ ‘Jesus is everything to me…’ ‘You, Lord, JUST You…’

The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.
For in Him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth,
visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities;
all things have been created through Him and for Him.
He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.
And He is the head of the body, the church;
He is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead,
so that in everything He might have the supremacy.
Colossians 1:15-18

In and through Jesus we have been given so very much! He truly is our ‘Light… (John 8:12), our Strength… (Psalms 28:7 and 8), our Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:5 and 6)!’

I just love to sing these next lines of this song; they are so beautiful!

What heights of love, what depths of peace, when fears are stilled, when strivings cease!
My Comforter, my All in All, here in the love of Christ I stand.

Through Jesus, also, we have love (Romans 8:38 and 39), peace (Philippians 4:7), comfort (Psalm 46:10), and joy (John 15:11)! He IS our ‘all in all.’

And when all things shall be subdued unto him,
then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him
that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.
1 Corinthians 15:28

In Jesus our hope, our trust, our constant assurance is in the right place—on the solid foundation of who we are in Christ.  In my own life I must need continual reminding  to not let my feelings get in the way or my circumstances be allowed to dictate my actions. But, as we (I!) stand firmly on the unchangeable truths of the gospel of Christ, our (my!)faith is being continuously built.

This hope we have as an anchor of the soul,
a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil,
where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us….
Hebrews 6:19 and 20

How about you? Do the words of this beautiful hymn evoke a response in your heart when you hear them?  (I would so LOVE to ‘hear’ your answer in the comments below.)

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You Are My Hiding Place

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You are my hiding place; You preserve me from trouble;
You surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah.
Psalm 32:7

Sometimes we find ourselves in the place where we want to hide…to be in a secret spot…away from trouble and strife. At those times, it is best not to run and isolate; and try to be alone. It is best to seek our God.

Then you will call upon Me, and you will come and pray to Me,
and I will hear and heed you.
Then you will seek Me, inquire for, and require Me [as a vital necessity]
and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.
Jeremiah 29:12 and 13

To know God’s promises brings such peace and comfort to our minds, does it not? Here we read of His particular promise to hear when we call and His promise to be found when we seek Him. His promise to us (to me and you!) is so simple! Listen…

my part: call upon Him…seek Him with my whole heart
His part: He will hear and heed…He will be found

The psalmist surely understood these promises! David was chased, hunted down by Saul and his army. He had to hide in caves and amongst the rocks on the cliffs. He was all alone during most of this time…alone—except for the abiding Presence of his God! David knew that his God would hide him.

For in the day of trouble He will hide me in His shelter;
in the secret place of His tent will He hide me;
He will set me high upon a rock.
Psalm 27:5

For David this was literally true. For us, however, most of our ‘hiding’ is not out in the wilderness. Our hiding is in plain sight—we hide our hearts, our feelings, our thoughts. But we can turn to the One Who loves us so and seek Him.  And when we do, He will be found.  And He will hide us in His shelter.

Think back…maybe you don’t need to go too far into your memories…to a time when you called out to your heavenly Father and sought Him with all your heart. When, perhaps, you were going through a situation and you needed His protection over your heart. When He heard you…and was found by you…and He hid you (your feelings, your thoughts, your heart). How did you feel then? Did you have that “…peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, <which> will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus?” (Philippians 4:7) I trust you did!

And so I encourage you, my friends, cling to His promises and purposefully take a stand on them!  He will hide you!  Trust Him knowing that,

I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living!
Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!
Psalms 27:13 and 14

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Lord, thank You for Your promises!  thank You for Your love!  thank You for the joy of knowing You will hide us!  thank You for the peace we have that is beyond our ablity to understand…but we do trust You and we do believe!!!  thank You in Jesus’ name.  amen.

Glorious Living w/ Coach Megan: Conquering Fear

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Dear Megan,

I have been battling crippling fear for sometime now and it is affecting my whole life. I know I am trying to control this myself and not fully giving this to God. I really need some guidance on how to get started with giving back to God what is not mine to take on. Can you help me begin to reclaim God’s truth on my fear? Bless you, KL

My Dear KL,

Thank you for taking this first step to reclaim your abundant life back and not live gripped by fear! You are so right… God does not intend for you to hold onto this fear and He longs for you to release it all to Him! I know, it’s not as easy as saying that so I pray that this post will give you the tools needed to begin to give all of your fear over to your Heavenly Father and begin to stand on His truth!

There are four types of fears:

  • Fear of loss
  • Fear of Failure
  • Fear of Rejection
  • Fear of the Unknown

Many people struggle with one or more of these fears and they can paralyze you and keep you from God’s best. When I begin to work with a client on fear, we focus on this Scripture:

2 Timothy 1:7

For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.

The world would like for us to believe that we have no control over our fears and that our only recourse is to totally avoid all fearful situations. However, with Christ alive inside of us, we  KNOW this to be untrue! God asks us to stand in His strength when we’re afraid. As we focus on His perfect love, we will feel His perfect peace in the midst of every fear-producing situation.

1 John 4:18

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment.

The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

Knowing the truth and acting on the truth is critical to conquering fear. The source of the truth is the One who said He was the Way, the Truth, and the Life. “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6). The primary resource we have for finding God’s truth is His Word, the Bible. The first step in applying truth is to identify the lies behind the fears you are experiencing as to replace those lies with facts. John 8:32 says “You will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

FEAR: “I can’t help this intense feeling on fear!”

FACT: “This feeling is a bluff to my mind and body. It is not grounded in truth.”

Psalm 27:3

Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear;
though war break out against me, even then I will be confident.

FEAR: “I have this feeling of doom… a feeling that I am going to die.”

FACT: “The time of death is in God’s hands. I will choose to trust Him.”

Job 14:5

A person’s days are determined; you have decreed the number of his months
and have set limits he cannot exceed.

FEAR: “I’m afraid of what others are thinking about me.”

FACT: “My peace comes from pleasing God, not in pleasing man.”

2 Corinthians 5:9

So we make it our goal to please him

FEAR: “I am hopeless and can never change.”

FACT: “In Christ, I am a new person. Nothing is hopeless.”

2 Corinthians 5:17

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come. The old has gone, the new is here!

FEAR: “I am so nervous, I can’t think clearly.”

FACT: “God will guard my mind and give me peace.”

Philippians 4:7

And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
FEAR: “To be safe, I have to be in control.”
FACT: God is in control of my life, and He is with me step by step.”

Deuteronomy 31:8

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.

FEAR: “I feel trapped with no way of escape.”

FACT: “God always makes a way of escape.”

1 Corinthians 10:13

No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear.

But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.

Blessings,

Coach Megan 🙂