January 23, 2018

My Hope Is Built On Nothing Less

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness
I dare not trust the sweetest frame
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name

When darkness seems to veil His face
I rest on His unchanging grace
In every high and stormy gale
My anchor holds within the veil

His oath, His covenant and blood
Support me in the ‘whelming flood
When all around my soul gives way
He then is all my hope and stay

On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand
On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand

When the last trumpet’s voice shall sound
O may I then in Him be found
Clothed in His righteousness alone
Faultless to stand before His throne

Sovereign Grace Music
Words by Edward Mote (1797-1874)

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We use the word ‘hope’ often in our daily lives.  We hope it’s a sunny day, we hope there are good sales when we go to the grocery store, we hope we sleep well at night.  There’s also the more serious hopes.  We hope our kids stay healthy, we hope we get the job promotion, we hope our budget stretches to the end of the month, we hope we make it to Heaven.  I’m sure you have heard all of those hopes, have even said them…and many more.

Those hopeful comments express the day-to-day feeling of desire for a certain thing to happen, a wishful thinking.  The hope that is sung about in this old hymn is based on a trust in something or someone.  Defined by one Biblical source it is an ‘expectation of, a looking forward to, something beneficial now and in the future’.  Another source uses the words ‘confidence, to anticipate, welcome, an expectation of what is sure, certain’, to describe this kind of hope.

Now faith is the assurance (the confirmation, the title deed)
of the things [we] hope for, being the proof of things [we] do not see
and the conviction of their reality
[faith perceiving as real fact what is not revealed to the senses].
Hebrews 11:1 AMP

…So that by two unchangeable things,
in which it is impossible for God to lie,
we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement
to hold fast to the hope set before us.
Hebrews 6:19

As a child, I remember ‘belting out’ the words to this chorus, “On Christ the solid rock I stand; All other ground is sinking sand.”  I love the words of this old hymn, because they are true.  The hope I have is built on Christ, The Rock, His blood and His righteousness.  That is all I ever want to trust in. All other hope is “sinking sand.”  People, as caring and well-meaning as they can be, are not enough to secure my standing before God.  In the “high and stormy gale” there is no anchor that holds me like Jesus.

For it says in Scripture:

“Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious,
and whoever believes in Him will not be put to shame.”
So the honor is for you who believe…
1 Peter 2:6-7

For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid,
which is Jesus Christ.
1 Corinthians 3:11

Here are just a few Scriptures of assurance that God is our Hope, our Refuge, our Strength in life:

On God my salvation and my glory rest;
The rock of my strength, my refuge is in God.
Psalm 62:7 NASB

He only is my Rock and my Salvation, my Fortress; I shall not be shaken.
Psalm 62:6 ESV

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

The LORD is my Light and my Salvation; whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the Stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?
Psalm 27:1 ESV

God is our Refuge and Strength, a very present Help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear…
Psalm 46:1-2 ESV

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the LORD, “My Refuge and my Fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”
Psalm 91:1-2 ESV

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God;
I will strengthen you, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10 ESV

I encourage you to meditate on this parable from Jesus:

Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.  The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.  But everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand.  The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.

Matthew 7:24-27

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Who or what is your rock, your refuge?  Do you live in hope, in confidence, and in certainty of Jesus Christ as your sure foundation?  My prayer is that you can ‘belt out’ this song with me:

My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness
On Christ the solid rock I stand
All other ground is sinking sand
IT IS SO!

Great Is Thy Faithfulness (Redux)

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Redux means to revisit, bring back, re-release. This last week of 2014, we—the bloggers here at Girlfriends Coffee Hour—are each ‘revisiting’ a blog we wrote earlier this year. We would love to share with you just a bit about how very good God has been to us! He has given us all so much grace and mercy, blessings and provision, protection and guidance! He has led us and taught us through His Holy Spirit so many incredible things! He has molded, and chastised, and encouraged us to be daughters with humble hearts who are dependent upon Him. And He has helped us to be strong, committed, and faithful women who love Him and desire to bring Him much honor and glory and majesty. We pray that our words would encourage you also…and draw You deeper into relationship with the One Who loves you so!  I know you will be encouraged by my dear friend Clella’s words.

When You Pass Through the Waters…

Have you ever walked upstream in a river and felt the current pushing against you, or have you walked into a big wave at the ocean and had it knock you down and try to pull you under?  When I look back on this past twelve months, I recall many events that felt just like that.  Perhaps you have, too?

When you go through deep waters,
I will be with you.
When you go through rivers of difficulty,
you will not drown.
When you walk through the fire of oppression,
you will not be burned up;
the flames will not consume you.
Isaiah 43:2

These verses assure me/us that we will NOT drown, we will NOT be consumed. The reason is found in the verses which surround verse 2:

But now, O Jacob, listen to the Lord who created you.
O Israel, the One who formed you says,
“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you.
I have called you by name; you are Mine…
because you are precious to Me.
You are honored, and I love you.
Do not be afraid, for I am with you.
I will gather you and your children from east and west.
I will say to the north and south,
‘Bring My sons and daughters back to Israel
from the distant corners of the earth.
Bring all who claim Me as their God,
for I have made them for My glory.
It was I who created them.’”
Isaiah 43:1, 4-7

In spite of the cancers, the surgeries, the deaths, the financial hardships, and other trials in the lives of my friends, family, and myself, we did NOT drown. These things were hard and tested our faith, but because we know the love and faithfulness of our Creator and Lord, we trusted Him to bring us through each trial and He did.

So when I looked back at the songs I had written about this year, this song, Great is Thy Faithfulness, still stands out as my favorite.  God is faithful every day and in every way.  “There is NO shadow of turning with Thee!”

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Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
There is no shadow of turning with Thee,
Thou changest not, Thy compassions they fail not,
As Thou hast been, Thou forever wilt be.

Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

Summer and winter and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon, and stars in their courses above;
Join with all nature in manifold witness,
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy, and love.

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
Thine own great Presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today, and bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside.

Written by Thomas O. Chisholm / Music by Rev. William H. Runyan

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Whether I’m in the valley…in dark shadows, or on the mountaintop, this song reminds me that I can ALWAYS trust God.  It is so full of truth, promise, and encouragement.

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10

Every morning that I awake, I can say “Great is Your faithfulness, Your mercies are new, and You will provide all I will ever need.” God is the same yesterday, today, and forever.  He doesn’t change, and neither does His compassion.

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
His mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:22-23

Even in the moments when I don’t sense His presence, I know He keeps His promises to bless, and give us strength and peace. He is faithful to His Word and loving to His children.

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

Surely You have granted him unending blessings
and made him glad with the joy of Your presence.
Psalm 21:6

God is faithfulness
He is merciful
He does provide
He is full of love
He does forgive
He gives peace
He is ever-present
He is our Strength
He is our Hope
surely His blessings are all mine/are all yours!  
Praise the Lord!

Let everything that has breath, praise the Lord.  Praise the Lord.
Psalm 150:6

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Dear Lord God, we come to You at the end of 2014 and the beginning of 2015, with grateful hearts.  Through all the trials and tribulations of this past year, You have been faithful.  Because Your faithfulness doesn’t change we are assured that You will faithfully be with us when new trials come our way.  You do NOT change, Your compassions do NOT fail.  There is NO shadow of turning with You.  Great is Your FAITHFULNESS to each of us, Your children, morning by morning!  “Thank You” can’t really express the gratitude that wells up in our hearts, but You know our hearts so—“Thank You, Lord, we love You.”  In Jesus’ Precious Name, Amen.

Fix My Eyes On You

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

Hit rewind, click delete
Stand face to face with the younger me
All of the mistakes
All of the heartbreak
Here’s what I’d do differently,

I’d…Love like I’m not scared
Give when it’s not fair
Live life for another
Take time for a brother
Fight for the weak ones
Speak out for freedom
Find faith in the battle
Stand tall but above it all
Fix my eyes on You
On You

I learned the lines and talked the talk
(Everybody knows it, everybody knows it)
But the road less traveled is hard to walk
(Everybody knows it, everybody knows)
It takes a soldier
Who knows his orders
To walk the walk I’m supposed to walk, and

The things of earth are dimming
In the light of Your glory and grace
I’ll set my sights upon Heaven
I’m fixing my eyes on You, on You
I’m fixing my eyes on You, on You
I’m fixing my eyes

I’ll fix my eyes on You, on You
I’ll fix my eyes on You, on You

Performed by For King & Country
Songwriters: Luke Smallbone, Joel Smallbone, Seth Mosley

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What would you do differently if you could talk to a younger you?  I would tell myself to rest in Him and know that all is going to be okay.  We serve an amazing God and He is good and all He gives is good.  I would tell the younger me to really search and learn His Word.  There is truly a verse for all things that you encounter—the happy and the sad.  And I would tell myself to fix my eyes on only Him and let the things of this earth fade away.

I would tell myself that God encounters are so much more important and meaningful than earthly consumption.  And that gratitude always comes before the miracle.  God has an answer to everything.  Sometimes it’s ‘yes’ and sometimes it’s ‘wait’ and sometimes it’s ‘no.’  I would tell myself to trust that even though I don’t like ‘no,’ that it is for my own good; and that if I could see the big picture, I would be so glad that He knew what was best for me.  I would tell myself to enjoy God and to look for the beauty in everything.

I would tell myself to love like He does and to live intentionally for His purpose.  To look for ways to really get in the game and get dirty sometimes.  All that really is going to matter when Jesus comes for us is just this: did we love like we weren’t scared…forgive when it hurt…take time to see the ones hurting…remember that He loves us and dances over us with singing.

So, today, if you would, leave a comment below on what you would tell a younger you!  Just one phrase will do!  And do remember to enjoy Him and all He is.

Need some verses to hold onto today?

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.
Isaiah 41:10 NLT

No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, Who loves us.
Romans 8:37 NLT

Then I pray to You, o Lord.
I say, “You are my place of refuge.
You are all I really want in life.”
Psalm 142:5 NLT

God, You did everything You promised, and I’m thanking You with all my heart.
You pulled me from the brink of death, my feet from the cliff edge of doom.
Now I stroll at leisure with God in the sunlight fields of life.
Psalm 56:12 MSG

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Let us pray: Dear Lord, thank You for Your grace that gives us chance after chance to get it right.  You are the Lover of our souls and You want to walk with us daily.  Help us to remember to rest in You and that You will do all You promised in Your Word and when we are lost, guide us back to Your promises.  You never change.  Your love never changes.  And victory is ours through Christ Who died for us and loves us unconditionally.  We love You!  In Jesus’ name, amen.

Great Is Thy Faithfulness

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father;
There is no shadow of turning with Thee,
Thou changest not, Thy compassions they fail not,
As Thou hast been, Thou forever wilt be.

Great is Thy faithfulness!
Great is Thy faithfulness!
Morning by morning new mercies I see
All I have needed Thy hand hath provided
Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

Summer and winter and springtime and harvest,
Sun, moon, and stars in their courses above;
Join with all nature in manifold witness,
To Thy great faithfulness, mercy, and love.

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth,
Thine own great Presence to cheer and to guide;
Strength for today, and bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside.

~  Sing this song with me as our prayer and worship today.  ~

Written by Thomas O. Chisholm / Music by Rev. William H. Runyan

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Other than “Jesus Loves Me” this is surely my favorite song.  I have sung it since my earliest memory, and I never get tired of it.  Whether I’m in the valley…in dark shadows, or on the mountaintop, this song reminds me that I can ALWAYS trust God.  It is so full of truth, promise, and encouragement.

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10

Every morning that I awake, I can say “Great is Your faithfulness, Your mercies are new, and You will provide all I will ever need.” God is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He doesn’t change, and neither does His compassion.

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
His mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.
Lamentations 3:22-23

I love all of nature (yes, even this crazy cold winter) so I join with all nature in praise to God’s great faithfulness.

For you shall go out in joy and be led forth in peace;
the mountains and the hills before you shall break forth into singing,
and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
Isaiah 55:12

I have been pardoned from sin and have His peace.  I sense His presence, strength, and hope.

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

God’s blessings are mine—are yours—because He is faithful to His Word and loving to His children.

Surely You have granted him unending blessings
and made him glad with the joy of Your presence.
Psalm 21:6

God is faithful, He is merciful, He does provide, He is full of love, He does forgive, He gives peace, He is ever-present, He is our strength, He is our hope, surely His blessings are all mine/are all yours!  Praise the Lord!

Let everything that has breath, praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.
Psalm 150:6

Glorious Living w/ Coach Megan: Dare to Dream — Don’t be Stunted by Self-Doubt!

GL header

Dear Megan,

God has placed some pretty big God-sized dreams in my heart, but I keep letting my self and all my doubts and fears get in the way of letting God work to help my dreams become a reality. Can you help point me in the right direction with combating this self-doubt?

~LB

Dearest LB,

…and you KNOW God specifically designed YOU to fulfill these dreams on earth to further His Kingdom! He so wants all of us to get out-of-the-way and give Him full reign over our dreams!  God wants you to rely on Him to guide you and give you strength…for ONLY through Him will you truly reach the potential He has for you!

Isaiah 41:10

So do not fear, for I am with you;do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Here are a few helpful tips when you find yourself coming across self-doubt:

1. Let go of the need to know HOW you will create your vision of what you want.

You likely do not know how you will create your dream, especially not in the beginning. That is the way it is supposed to be! Your intuition is how the Universe shows you the way to your dream! We often end up doubting ourselves when we can’t see how we can create what we want. Or, sometimes we think of one way to create it and think we aren’t capable of doing that. Let go of this kind of thinking and trust that, if you have a vision that excites you, you have within you what it takes to create it. And trust that you will be given what you need to make it a reality, when you need it.

Proverbs 3:5

Trust in the Lord with all your heartand lean not on your own understanding

 

2. Remind yourself of how important your dream is to you.

Give yourself 5 to 10 minutes of free time to spend focusing on your vision of what you want and how you will feel when you have created your dream. Let yourself feel these positive emotions and imagine that you have already created what you want and are living your vision. Let yourself get excited, these positive emotions will energize your vision and allow it come to you faster. This reminder of why your vision is important to you can help you set that doubt aside.

2 Timothy 1:7

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

 

3. Be a witness to the voice of self-doubt.

As you notice the voice of doubt coming up, watch the thoughts that come up rather than participating with it. Recognize that it is the voice of the part of you that wants to keep you the same and to keep you in familiar territory. Distancing yourself from this voice can help you to gain perspective so you are still in charge and the doubting self is not. Release the need to fight it, simply allow the doubt to be expressed and move on.

Philippians 1:6

…being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

 

4. Get the doubts and fears down on paper and out of your mind.

In your mind, they tend to endlessly repeat themselves and keep you stuck. Get out a piece of paper and write out all of the doubts and fears that come to mind. On a new piece of paper write down positive statements around why you CAN create your vision. Maybe you are downplaying your strengths and abilities; list these on this second piece of paper as well. When you are done, read over the doubts one last time, then tear the paper into tiny pieces and throw it away. Read over your positive statements and let the positive emotions and a feeling of confidence take over. Feel free to read these positive statements whenever you need to remind yourself that you are capable!

Philippians 4:8

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

5. Repeat a personalized affirmation to yourself.

This will instill positive beliefs around your ability to create your vision. Make sure the affirmation feels good when you say it, and it is meaningful to you. The better you feel when you repeat it, the faster it can become your reality. Examples: I believe in myself; I deserve to have what I want; God put this desire in my heart; I am safe, etc. whatever resonates with you. You can also use the positive statements you created in #4 above.

 

Self-doubt is likely something that you will face on the path to your dream, but that is no reason to stop moving forward. Take a few minutes to readjust your focus using the tips above and you will be feeling better and more confident, ready to move forward to your dreams once again! God NEEDS this to be a priority to fulfill His purposes on this earth! 

 

Blessings,

Coach Megan 🙂