Into the Silence

The world is so noisy. All around us, even out in the country, social media, TV, car radios and stores are blaring advertisements and voices almost 24/7.

 

Many people have a noisy soul too. Their thoughts and feelings are bombarding them with negative issues that demand their immediate attention. They are weary and discover no rest, even in God’s presence.

 

In sleep they dream disruptive images, which come from their troubled soul. They argue with significant others in their life and even argue with their own self; finding no peace at all.

 

Only if we disappear into our spirit and immerse our self in God’s peace can we find ultimate silence regardless of the dissonance of circumstances around us.

 

As we sit in His presence, we get lost in Him and focus on His still, small voice within us. We worship with the angels and enjoy our front row seat with Jesus in heavenly places even now (Ephesians 2:4-7).

 

We sit in companionable silence with Him as we bask in the pleasure of God’s face shining on us as He takes joy in our company (Numbers 6:25; Psalm 80:3; Zephaniah 3:17).

 

Finding comfort in the silent presence of our significant others is also a joyful experience. We may chat amiably or snuggle silently and recharge our battery for the coming tasks which will demand our attention.

 

Holding our child as they drift off to sleep is one of the most satisfying experiences in life. We watch their peaceful features and enjoy their unconditional love as their breathing slows and their tiny eyes droop.

 

Yet, our most meaningful relationship is dwelling continually in God’s presence. He permeates us with a quiet peace, sane direction, cheerful thoughts and a holy existence. We pray or listen as the moment dictates and enjoy the constant fellowship of His company.

Prayer:

Father God, as we abide in Your presence we experience deep peace, unexplainable joy, and Your comfort and support as we share with You our tears of worship or burdens. You are kind to all of us who trust in and obey You. We wait patiently for You in our alone times and in the cacophony of daily living (Lamentations 3:25-26).

 

By faith, even in our worse trials and times of testing, we joyfully count on Your faithfulness to produce endurance in our soul (James 1:2). We dwell in our spirit and snuggle under the almighty shadow of Your wings (Psalm 91:4). You give us peace which overcomes human reasoning, and You shower us with Your blessings regardless of the hardships we experience in this life (Philippians 4:7).

 

Thought for the Day:
Times of silence give us rest, hope and strength to face the next trial.

 

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Our Source of Rivers of Living Water

In the Old Testament, Jesus was the Rock from which the Israelites were supplied fresh water in the barren wilderness (1 Corinthians 10:4). In the New Testament, He is still our source of living water. His springs of eternal life give us a well of living water to draw from at any time (John 4:13-14).

As God regenerates our spirit and heals our soul, there are multiple rivers of living water flowing from our innermost being and refreshing us and anyone who comes in contact with us (John 7:37-39).

If we do not feel this free cascade of life flowing from within us, then there is a dam of negative emotions, unresolved conflict and sin entrenched in our soul. They control the floodgate to God’s living water within us and block the rivers’ flow.

Physically, if we are not thirsty, we will not drink. Yet, when we are thirsty, we often eat instead of drink, thinking that we are hungry. We gorge our self on food and are never satisfied, because we do not fill our cells with the life-giving water they crave.

Spiritually, we actually need to come to Christ, our living water; yet we often turn to sin to satisfy us instead. We miss out on the life-giving water that Christ offers to this lost and dying world.

He reaches out especially to those who realize they are poor and destitute without personal means to obtain this living water by their own efforts (Isaiah 55:1). Without cost to us, yet with great personal cost to Himself, Jesus freely gives us His living water (Revelation 21:6).

His saving work continues through each moment of our life (Philippians 1:6). We see a constant change in our thinking and behavior. We gain spiritual understanding, power and maturity which flow through us to those God brings into our life (1 Corinthians 2:11-16; Galatians 5:15-25; Ephesians 5:18-21).

Prayer:
Father God, as the deer pants after the water book to quench its thirst, so too we thirst for You, our living God (Psalm 42:1). We thirst and yearn for You in this weary, arid land where there is no other source of the water of life (Psalm 63:1). Help us to humble our self under Your mighty hand and to meekly accept Your living water, drinking freely until these mighty rivers flow from our innermost being.

Your rivers of living water satisfy every part of our spirit, soul and body. Peace and joy flood every cell of our being (Philippians 3:19; Nehemiah 9:20). Lead us to those in our life who are thirsting for You and help us to offer them a drink from Your rivers of life within us.

Thought for the Day:
The Holy Spirit and the Bride say to the thirsty, “Come;” anyone wishing to drink the water of life may come without personal cost and drink of the rivers of living water flowing from the throne of God and from within His Saints.
– Revelation 22:17; Psalm 78:15-16; Proverbs 4:23; Isaiah 44:3; Ezekiel 36:26-27, 47:1-9; Joel 3:18, Zechariah 13:1, 14:8

Redemption Story

On Calvary’s cross, Jesus paid the ransom for our sins and gave us freedom in Him (John 8:36). As our Refuge, He is our redemption and He replenishes, rejuvenates, re-establishes and restores us.

When our soul is in anguish and we see no way out, or when we are lost in a cave of darkness and are chilled to the bone, our God is right there with us (Hebrews 13:5).

Sometimes, our determination wanes and our body grows weary (Psalm 31:10). We may cause our self to suffer physical illness, if we do not surrender our disappointment and stress-filled life to God.

As we weary of living with the consequences of our mistakes, we stop attempting to live life for our own purposes, with our human resources and in our own power and effort (Psalm 31:14-20).

When we learn not to take even one more step in our human strength, we cast all of our cares on God and He proves His care for us by changing our life for the better (1 Peter 5:7).

Once we are surrendered to Him, even when our pillow is drenched with tears caused by physical, mental, financial and emotional suffering and disappointment, God is in control (Psalm 56:8).

We totally surrender to God, not holding back or relying on our self in any way. Then, our God of grace restores us and re-establishes our life in the center of His will (1 Peter 5:10).

We often look for fulfillment on this side of Heaven. We may succeed in certain areas, but complete fulfillment only happens for those who totally surrender to God and walk in His Spirit.

Sometimes, for His glory, God allows us to walk in continual trials until His ultimate healing in Heaven (John 9:3). Even then, we have the power of His Spirit within us to find His joy and contentment in our circumstances.

When we place our faith in God’s faithfulness, His presence within us gives us His peace, wisdom and power, and He strengthens our body to accomplish those tasks, which He calls us to do (Proverbs 31:17).

Prayer:
Father God, Your Word is our truth and our hope (Psalm 119:114). Keep us safe from destructive people and accusing tongues (Psalm 31:20; Proverbs 29:25). Watch over us and shade us from the fiery darts of the enemy (Psalm 121:5). Continue to provide a refuge for the poor and needy all the days of our life (Isaiah 25:4).

When we serve You with our whole heart, mind, spirit and energy, You lift our burdens and bring us continual new life. We offer back to You the gifts, which You give to us, and we ask you to empower us to perform every ministry, which You lead us to do. Remind us to breathe out life’s stresses and to breathe in Your calming presence all throughout the day.

Thought for the Day:
In this world, we are guaranteed to have problems at home, work and in society; but as we trust Christ’s complete redemption, His joy is our strength, and He is our refuge and fortress forever. – John 16:33; Nehemiah 8:10; Psalm 18:2, 91:2

Moving Forward through Forgiveness

God became man in order to atone for our sins, because we could never pay the debt on our own (1 John 4:19). Jesus loves us more than a pearl of great price (Matthew 13:45).

Jesus relinquished his royal status and gave His life, so that we can live as God’s adopted children and joint heirs with Him to receive all that the Father owns in His Kingdom (Romans 8:16-18).

God forgives us of every transgression of His law; but unless we forgive our self, Satan keeps us under his bondage to degradation and sin. The shame we feel for our behavior is fed by Satan’s lies, which He whispers in our heart day and night (Revelation 12:10).

Satan knows that if we ever forgive our self, and dedicate our life completely to the God who saved us, he will lose us forever. There is no thought, word or deed, which we commit, that is too horrific for God to forgive (Romans 5:8).

Most of our choices are mistakes that we make without thinking, although some of them are premeditated. Yet, God forgives each one, which we confess, according to His mercy and justice (1 John 1:9, 3:9). He erases the injustice of our behavior with His goodness and grace.

God has a perfect plan for us and our true joy lies in following that plan (Ephesians 2:10). It is never too late to change. We can lay down our shield of lies and our heavy burden of pain at Jesus’ feet.

We come to God in our weariness and hopelessness, and He gives us rest for our soul and births life into our dead spirit, which we carried around within us for our whole life, until the day we repent (Matthew 11:28).

Prayer:
Father God, Your Spirit joins Your Bride in encouraging anyone who reads or hears Your Word to come to Your river of life (Revelation 22:17). Your voice penetrates the hard wall, which we build around our soul to keep out the pain of the past and the eventual pain of the future.

This wall crumbles when we face life’s difficulties with Christ in us. Help us not to patch up the wall of defenses and build it higher and thicker, and to realize that only Your love can protect us from life’s hardships and storms (Isaiah 4:6).

Complete surrender to Your call on our life will put us under Your umbrella of protection (Job 11:13-15). You give us a place of repose (Isaiah 28:12). You refresh and satisfy our faint heart (Jeremiah 31:25). You give us Your living water to drink for eternity (John 7:37).

Thought for the Day:
Forgiving others and our self is the key to freedom from the destructive aspects of life and it is the door to our freedom in Christ.

Abundant Grace

Forgiveness is one of the hardest spiritual disciplines God calls us to do, but the result is worth it when we find His freedom in our soul. Forgiveness does not let the perpetrator off the hook, but it puts them in God’s capable hands and He will exact His revenge from them (Ezekiel 25:17). Nothing we could do, not even holding a grudge, will be that effective.

As we surrender to God’s will and have faith in His faithfulness, He guards our hearts and minds through Christ in the most miraculous of ways (Philippians 4:4-7). If we refuse to forgive, this bitterness is likely to cause us to suffer from health issues (Proverbs 14:30). We can find joy, even in the most trying difficulty when we pray with gratitude in our heart.

When life spirals out of our control, we never need to fear, because it is never out of God’s control. His abundant grace is sufficient for us (2 Corinthians 12:9). If we do not have what we want, we can be assured that God does not want us to have it at this time. When He is ready to supply it, we will receive even more than we ever thought possible.

Although we are human and weak, God makes us strong, and His grace is always sufficient to meet any needs, which arise in our life (2 Corinthians 12:9; 2 Timothy 2:1). He works out everything, which we entrust into His care (2 Timothy 1:12). When we hope in the Lord, He keeps us from becoming weary; He renews our strength and we soar like eagles (Isaiah 40:31).

Christ is in us every moment of every day. The fact that He is our God vanquishes any depressive or hopeless thoughts. As we walk in God’s Spirit and obey His commandments, we prove our love for Him (1 John 2:3, 5:3). We know that He will always encourage, support, defend and care for us (Isaiah 41:10).

Prayer:
Father God, thank You for replacing the negative characteristics of our soul with the fruit of Your Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). Your sanctifying process gives us the mind of Christ and transforms us into His likeness (1 Corinthians 2:16; 2 Corinthians 3:18). Now, whenever we feel anxiety, we can ask You to reveal the reason behind it, and we can confess it as an idol of unbelief in our life. Remind us not to get out of bed without listening to Your Spirit’s direction for each moment of our day. Thank you so much for Your abundant grace in our life.

Thought for the Day:
As God’s grace reaches more and more people, we shout with great thanksgiving and give God more and more glory. – 2 Corinthians 4:15

The End-Time Church

The End-time Church

Many in the last days Church are hardworking and never grow weary of serving the Lord in every way we can (Revelation 2:2-3). We have a passion for working for Christ, but we often forsake our quiet times with God, in order to fill our time with religious activities. We work in ministry for our own fulfillment, rather than for the love of God in obedience to His direction (Ephesians 2:10).

Like the Church of Ephesus, the modern church has forsaken our first love (Revelation 2:4). Like the Church of Laodicea, the Spirit left and we function in our human energy and effort. We do not even recognize that we are spiritually poor, lame, wretched, naked and pitiful (Revelation 3:17). We look at numbers to gauge our success rather than changed lives.

Others of us are hearers of the Word, but not doers. We do not serve in any ministry. We attend conventions, buy books and sermons, and follow the most popular preachers, but we fail to obey the Lord (James 1:22; John 14:15, 23). We are ever learning, but never walking in the Truth (2 Timothy 3:7). We have a personal relationship with Christ, but not a heart full of love for Him (John 14:21, 23; 1 Corinthians 16:22).
God warns us of judgment for our disobedience and immorality, and He calls us to repentance (Revelation 2:5). Jesus promises that if we heed His Word, we will overcome the deception and lusts of this life. He is preparing a place for authentic Believers to eat from the tree of life and to dwell for eternity in the paradise of God (Revelation 2:7, Revelation 21-22).

Prayer:
Father God, the blessed assurance that we enjoy as Believers is that Christ lives within us (Galatians 2:20; Colossians 3:3-4). Remind us not to fall under Satan’s deception to crave the world or to minister through our own abilities. Make us defenders of Your Word, so that we do not compromise our love of Your truth. Help us to persevere in persecution and not to grow weary of following Your Spirit’s guidance every moment of every day (Revelation 2:2-3).

Thought for the Day:
The light of our modern church went out, and we do not know it.
– John 8:12; Matthew 5:14

Waiting for the Next Shoe to Drop

Living in this world apart from Christ is wearisome at best. There is always something negative happening to us in some way or another: financial, physical, relational, mental, emotional, etc. We struggle from day to day and almost never awaken without some trepidation over what will happen to us next. Trouble even seems to happen in “threes.” We are always waiting for the next shoe to drop.

We try to climb the corporate ladder in order to provide our family with as much security as we can. We compromise our quality family time in order to work overtime to bring home more money. We often work two or three jobs in order to give our children more than we had when we were growing up. We fall into the trap of buying them the latest toy on the market at inflated prices.

This schedule produces even more health, mental, emotional and relational problems. Some of us even work our self into an early grave. We resemble the hamster on the little metal wheel, going round and round, but never really getting anywhere. We amass material possessions, but they keep breaking down or coming out with an updated model, so that we feel the need to get a new one.

When we come to Christ and entirely surrender to Him, we begin living in His perfect plan for our life. We no longer fear the next shoe dropping, because it usually ends up being a glass slipper with King Jesus using the entire event to provide us with a special place in His Kingdom along with miraculous blessings through every negative event (Romans 8:28; Jeremiah 29:11; Ephesians 2:19).

Prayer:
Father God, the life You give to us in Christ supplies us with joy and peace, which transcends all human reason (Philippians 4:7). We are blessed when we trust in You, so we place our confidence in You. You plant us like a tree by Your streams of living water, and our spirit has constant nourishment. We do not fear whatever life throws at us, and we flourish no matter what happens to us (Jeremiah 17:7-8). You put Your plans in our heart and bring them to fruition, as we walk in Your Spirit (Psalm 20:4; Galatians 5:15-26). You sustain us, bless us and shine Your favor on us. You are always gracious to us and You keep Your eye on us, so that we walk in Your peace (Numbers 6:24-26).

Thought for the Day:
In Christ, we no longer fear trials or difficulties because we know they hold the seed for a miracle, which will surely happen.