Ecclesiastes 4:9-10, 12 – Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.
If you grew up in Sunday school, you probably remember the story of Shadrach, Meschach, and Abednego. And if not, check out Daniel chapter 3. It’s such an amazing story of God’s power, and how 3 regular men obeyed and trusted in Him.
King Nebuchadnezzar created an idol made of gold. It wasn’t just a puny idol either – it was over 90 feet high, by 90 feet wide. Go BIG or go HOME right?
When the music began to play, everyone bowed down to worship this golden idol. But Shadrach, Meschach, and Abednego refused.
When everyone was bowed low, they held their heads high, and stood firm in their faith to bow only to our Almighty God.
In their disobedience to the king, and their obedience to God, their consequence was to be thrown in the fiery furnace (7 x hotter than usual!). But even to the point of death, they stood their ground.
Daniel 3:17-18 – “…the God we serve is able to deliver us from it (death in the fiery furnace)… BUT even I he does not, we want you to know that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.”
They knew God was ABLE to deliver them from death in the furnace, but even if God chose NOT to – they still trusted in Him. They knew where they would spend eternity. Death was not the end for them. They had no fear and they would not compromise in their faith in God.
We may never face persecution or death for our faith, but we may face peer pressure in our lives to go along with ‘the crowd.’ To take part in ungodly acts or to be a part of something that would take away from our personal witness of who Jesus is to us. Is it ever worth it? No. It’s not.
God will be and is always with us in every situation. When we are feeling pressured to create a gray area in our lives – He will give us the strength and confidence to stand up boldly for our faith. In doing so, our act of obedience will be a testimony of WHO He is to our friends, family, neighbors, coworkers, and so on!
May we be a living testimony of who Jesus is to us today, and every day. I pray for strength, boldness, confidence, peace, and joy in your witness today.
God bless you!
John 10:10 – “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.”
Have you ever felt robbed of something? Perhaps you’ve been slighted by a relationship, a friendship or a new job. Or how about feeling emotionally robbed? Have you ever experienced a loss of a relationship? Did you used to be a joyful person, but circumstances have left you feeling numb?
There have been times in my life where a circumstance, someone in mylife, or my own poor choices have left me breathless. Numb. Joyless.
When God says, “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly” He means it! So, what does that look like? Does it mean material comforts? More stuff?
Take a look at Hebrews 11. You may be familiar with the long list of Biblical Saints. It’s the “Hall of Fame the Bible.” Abraham, Moses, Sarah, Jacob, Isaac… just to name a few. (Link to Hebrews 11: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/…)
These saints did not have a perfectly easy life. Not at all. They suffered torture, death, imprisonment, stoning, homelessness, poverty, persecution… and they themselves were far from perfect!
Yet; through it all, these saints lived abundantly.
The abundant life for them was a deep seeded joy that could not be taken away. A joy that only exists through life with our Father God, with the help of the Holy Spirit to lead and guide, comfort and encourage.
As Believers, we are blessed with abundance. Not in a material sense. A soul sense. When we walk with Jesus, we have abundant peace, joy, and love.
It’s a deep and abiding peace that carries us through any storm we may walk through. He sustains us. We are never alone.
I pray that if you feel that you’ve been robbed of your joy or your peace, that you know that you have; within the power of our Lord and Savior, the opportunity to get it back. Approach the throne of Grace in the confidence that peace and joy in Jesus is offered and promised. It cannot be taken away. When our roots grow deep in Jesus, we live in abundance.
He invites you and I to this life of abundance. Every day. Claim it. Own it. Cherish it.
Mark 12:30-31 says – And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” What does it look like to love our Savior, and God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength?
Heart. Soul. Mind. Strength.
All inclusive. All ecompassing. All IN.
Remember the Sunday school song, “They will know we are Christians by our love, by our love, they will know we are Christians by our love…”. Christians bear fruit. Spiritual, sweet fruit!
Galatians 5:22-23 says – But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
When we love Jesus with all our heart, we fade into the background, and HE so beautifully shines before us. We deflect the praises of man, and give the glory to Him.
When we step aside in our humanness, Jesus beautifully steps in and takes control of our lives. Our will, our desires, how we spend our time, and how we treat our friends, family and neighbors — change. Change, for the good.
More of Him. Less of me.
My prayer for us today is this: May we be ALL IN for Jesus. May His light shine through you, and through me today. In every interaction, and every situation, may we reflect WHO Jesus is to us. May we step aside, to allow more room for Him to move in and through our lives. May we humbly deflect the praises of man, and give all the glory and honor to He who is our Savior, our best friend, our constant and able companion – Jesus. Life is not easy. Life brings the hard. The painful. The difficult. But He is faithful and gracious, generously giving strength to the weary, wisdom to the seeking, and peace to our anxious heart. Thank you, Jesus for your Spirit. May we bear the fruit of your Spirit in our lives today, and every day. Amen. ❤ Allison
Ezekiel 33:10-11 – “And you, son of man, say to the house of Israel, Thus have you said: ‘Surely our transgressions and our sins are upon us, and we rot away because of them. How then can we live?’ Say to them, As I live, declares the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live; turn back, turn back from your evil ways, for why will you die, O house of Israel?
In Ezekiel 33 the Jewish exiles came to a place of finally realizing their sin, and asked the question: ‘because of our sins… how then can we live?’
There have been many times that I’ve felt so overwhelmed by my sin, and my past mistakes, and felt like there’s just no way out from underneath it all. The hole I’d dug for myself was deep.
Guess what I’ve come to realize? When I was in the pit, there was nowhere to go – but UP! The truth for each one of us is this — If you feel like you’re standing in a pit right now you’re only in half way!
Look up! There’s a Lifeline waiting for you! Grab hold of it! What are you waiting for?
God’s desire for us is to LIVE. To turn away from our sin and be restored to LIFE to the full. The only way to live life to the full is in the fullness of God. I’ve tried the opposite. It doesn’t work.
When we confess and repent – turn and RETURN – the weight is lifted, and the burden released. That, dear friends, is God’s desire for each of us!
Dear Jesus, may we see our sin for what it is – a burden, and a weight separating us from You. Thank you, Jesus, that you don’t want us to be stuck in that place of burden. You forgive when we confess. You restore when we return. Your desire is for us to live in freedom and fullness. May we walk in it. May we dwell in it. May we embrace it. Let us walk today in the fullness of the peace, love and joy that only You provide. You alone are our Lifeline. You alone are the Savior of our souls. May we place our hope and trust in You – the Giver of joy eternal. Amen.
Live free today!
PS. If you need some prayer and encouragement today, please message me! I would love to pray for you!!
In my journey through the Bible I came to Lamentations this morning. It is as it sounds, a lament. Jeremiah is mourning for Jerusalem – for the loss of their temple, their king, and its citizens in exile. After all this, the people finally realized their sin and confessed.
There have been many times in my life where I’ve come to the place of lamenting for my sin. Where I’ve dug a hole so deep I see no way out, and I’ve come to Jesus broken.
In those moments, God has so graciously reminded me that if I truly repent of those sins – He will wipe the slate clean. He remembers them no more.
I was listening to a podcast yesterday, and they were talking about God’s forgiveness. The speaker made a comment that was such an “AHA!” Moment for me. He said, “…when we keep asking forgiveness for our past sins, God says, ‘huh? What are you talking about? I don’t remember that?!”
Basically, God is saying, “Why are you bringing up something over and over that I’ve forgiven and forgotten about? Move on.”
This, in no way means that we are to cheapen God’s grace or take advantage of His forgiveness. This isn’t the green light to keep doing the same things over and over. Not at all.
When we ask for forgiveness and truly repent we are also promising God to turn away from that sin, and try our best to never repeat it. If, in all sincerity we do this – God is faithful and remembers our sin no more. With a pure heart and intention to turn from our sin, we place it at His feet. When we do so – He calls us to move forward. And not look back…
We’re not going that direction. Face forward. Move forward.
Lamentations 3:22-26 – The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.” The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him. It is good that one should wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.
God bless you! Thank you for being here!
1. Would you rather have one penny, or 1000 pennies?
2. Would you rather have one dollar, or 1000 dollars?
Silly, right? In this day and age, we know that a penny buys you… nothing. But a thousand pennies equals $10, which buys you a couple of fancy coffees or lunch. Even one dollar isn’t worth much today. But $1000 is significant. I’d certainly be happy with that!
Or, would I?
In today’s world, we think more is better. One dollar – or a thousand dollars? The majority of us would probably choose the latter. But having faith in Jesus means we have a much different perspective, don’t we?
This morning I was reading Psalm 84:10-11
“Better is ONE day in Your courts
than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked. For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor; no good thing does He withhold from those whose walk is blameless.”
In this case – ONE IS MORE.
One is – enough.
It’s all we should long for. Merely one day in the presence of Jesus our precious Savior, is better than a thousand apart from Him.
Psalm 84:1-2 –
How lovely is Your dwelling place,
O Lord Almighty.
My soul yearns,
even faints for the courts of the Lord;
my heart and my flesh cry out
for the LIVING GOD!
Just ONE day. It makes a huge difference. January 12th, my wonderful, Godly father was airlifted to a hospital having a massive heart attack. ONE day changed his life, and all of our lives forever. That day could’ve ended very differently. Thank You, Lord that he survived it, and is getting better every day. One day – makes a difference.
Today, I just pray that we may be filled with the awe of knowing without a shadow of a doubt that WE are chosen by Him. We have been chosen to live and dwell with Him. To grapple with questions, and worries – and bring all of it to Him. To trust in His wisdom, and Spirit to lead and guide us. To give us peace and understanding. To see our world through His eyes, and not our own. To rest in the knowledge that just ONE day – today – is better with HIM than a thousand anywhere else without Him.
And then… do it again tomorrow. One day at a time. May each morning bring refreshing, knowing that we have yet one more day to walk with Him. To do the beautiful dance of life with Him. Not apart from Him.
God bless you – God be with you – may His joy be complete in each of you today, and every single day!