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Isaiah 43:1 “But now thus saith the Lord that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine.”

What a beautiful thing is is to realize that the Lord of all creation calls me by name. He knows the littlest things bout me, even the things that I don't know. He knows my thoughts before i think them. He knows my actions before I do them. He remembers things that I have forgotten and He knows my future. He knows my flaws. He knows my insecurities. He knows EVERYTHING. He doesn't just know my name but he knows it all. I find a lot of comfort in that but it is also an incredible reminder that I can not hide anything from God. He knows everything that goes on in my heart. He knows the dark areas of my heart and He wants nothing more than for me to allow Him into those dark places. I’ll admit though, I struggle with it sometimes. Dying to self is a daily task, it isn't a once for all thing. It’s waking up everyday and allowing the Lord into every situation. Unfortunately somedays I wake up and part of my heart is hardened towards the Lord. Sometimes I even neglect to give Hi…

Luke 9:62 "And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God."

So this verse leads me to ask myself two very simple yet two very needed questions. Question number one, are my hands on the plow? Question 2, if so am I at all looking backwards?
So my answer to the first question is so simple and easy that it is almost reflex. Yes, absolutely my hand is on the plow. Unfortunately, on the other hand the second question really depends on the day, but why? Why do I allow my feelings to dictate what I worship. Why do I allow my feelings to control my eyes. Somedays when I lose sight of my identity in the Lord I look back to find my identity in past past, whatever that may be. But then, before I know it, my hands are off of the plow and I am walking towards whatever my eyes are focused on. The Lord calls me to follow Him and never look back. He calls me to walk in the new creation that I was made  into when I accepted Him as my Lord and Savior. My old self, the person that I used to be and the person that used to find temporary happiness in sin is dead an…

Luke 17:10 “So you also, when you have done all that you were commanded, say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done what was our duty.’””

The entire parable of the unworthy servant is a beautiful view as to how our actions should be towards the Lord. I am a servant of the Lord Jesus Christ. In that, I am called to follow Him and I am called to listen and go without complaining. In the parable we are told of a servant who has been out in the fields working all day for his master. An example is henceforth presented, would the master of the house then tell his servant to have a seen at the dinner table, to relax, and to enjoy the food which is presented? No. The servant would be instructed to continue serving after a long day in the field. The servant would be told to make dinner and serve his master until instructed to stop. If this servant that is being spoken of is a servant for a creation, how much more so should we be a servant for The One and Only Creator? We are called to work out in the field all day, whatever that field may be. For me, right now, that field is teaching, that field is hospitality, that field is wha…

Romans 1:10 “always in my prayers, asking that somehow by God's will I may now at last succeed in coming to you.”

Paul, described as a servant of the Lord and one of the apostles, had a desire to visit Rome and to share with them more of the Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Without ceasing Paul mentioned and brought his desires before the Lord. He didn't grow weary he prayed with the sure understanding that the Lord was listening and heard Him. Paul longed to go to Rome, he wanted it so badly but the Lord didn't give it to him right away. He had to travel to many other places before making it to Rome. He prayed for years upon years WITHOUT ceasing and the Lord gave him the desire of his heart.  Finally in chapter 27 of Acts, after years of following the Lord, and remaining faithful, Paul is on a boat heading for Rome! But while at sea they encounter a storm and the boat is shipwrecked. Those of board were forced out of the boat and to swim to land, they ended up on Malta. I cant imagine what must have been going through Paul’s head at this point. I know that if I were in His situation, I can…

2 Corinthians 3:12 "Since we have such a hope, we are very bold,"

Boldness, having courage and confidence. Boldness is such a tricky one for me. We are called to be bold as Christians. We are called to stand out as different. We are called not to be conformed to this world. I was presented with an interesting question today, If Christians were being arrested, persecuted, murdered, beaten, etc. for their faith would there be enough evidence of the Lord in my life to be among the persecuted? Would I be walking boldly enough that others would notice the Lord’s Holy Spirit dwelling within me? Today, my answer would be yes. Then I continued to present myself with another question, would it always? Unfortunately my answer changed to a no. I struggle with being content staying in the back of the room with my hood on and my hat covering my eyes. 2nd Corinthians 3:12 states “Since we have such a hope, we are very bold,” How dare I not be bold because of this hope I have. How dare I not take off the hood, take off that hat, and run to the front of the room. T…

Genesis 28:21-22 “So that I come again to my father's house in peace; then shall the Lord be my God: And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God's house: and of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee.”

Even after Jacob had seen what the Lord had shown to him Jacob bargained with God. He told God “So that I come again to my father's house in peace; then shall the Lord be my God: And this stone, which I have set for a pillar, shall be God's house: and of all that thou shalt give me I will surely give the tenth unto thee.” When I look at this I see myself. I see who I used to be before I had a real relationship with the Lord. I was guilty of bargaining with the Lord saying “ Lord if you get me out of this, if you fix this situation, then I will follow You. Then I wont turn back to my old ways, but first You need to fix this.” Such immaturity, it’s disgusting. We must guard our hearts. We must be constantly watching ourselves making sure that our Love for the Lord isn’t conditional. We need to love Him as He loves us. The Lord’s love comes with zero conditions. His unconditional love is a characteristic of Him. He is forever the same which makes His love forever the same. He is …

Isaiah 64:8 “But now, O Lord, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand.”

“Life is not as idle ore, but iron dug from central gloom and battered by the shocks of doom to shape and use.” I came across this quote in my morning devotional the other day, My Upmost for His Highest. The Lord  desires for us to be shaped, shaped closer to the image of Himself. For us to be formed into that our callused hearts must experience fire to be softened. Our hearts must first me broken and made pliable for the Lord to change and shape. Imagine that you are a block of hard unbreakable steel. You desire to become this beautiful sword, so what must you do? You must go through heat to be softened. You must sit in the fire and stay. You must be beaten with a mallet repeatedly while already in the fire. You must remain in that fire for this to work. You must not jump out of the fire when it becomes to painful. You must not move out of the way when you see the mallet coming once again to hit you. For you to become that sword that you desire so badly to be you have to go through t…

Psalm 33:8 “Let all the earth fear the LORD; let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him!”

Stars have to be one of my favorite creations. The stars have zero purpose, besides our sun which without it we would freeze, but I’m talking about the stars that are billions of miles away. The stars that I lay out in the field looking at in complete awe of my Creator. The Lord spoke The biggest stars into creation simply by the vapor of His mouth. The Largest of starts were spoken into existence with our Lord’s mouth. That is such a crazy thought, and the Lord created them just to show us more of His amazing character. He created those stars for our pleasure, there is no other explanation for it. I am so guilty of putting my Lord into this box, into this little tangible thing, but our Lord is so big and amazing that the biggest things in all of creation were only His breath. I know for me, I need to take more time to appreciate his creation. I need to look for the Lord’s beauty and goodness in not only the large details but also the little details. Look at a snowflake. There is no r…

Pslam 127:1 "Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain."

I have to make more of an effort to allow for the Lord to take over situations. Sometimes, in my immaturity I fail to allow the Lord into situations, even big situations, and they end up failing simply because I never allowed the Lord to play a part in them. If I am not inviting the Lord into something I cant wait around expecting to be blessed by Him. If the Lord isn't my center of all things I am simply being foolish.
 I tend to worry a lot and I neglect to give that worry over to that Lord. The Lord cant bless the situations in which I don't invite His loving grace and mercy into. Even while being fully aware that I am able to do absolutely nothing in my own strength I forget, I try and attempt to do it on my own for one reason or another, usually because I am impatient. Thats another thing that I tend to forget to hand over the Lord, my lack of patience. On the other hand I might be scared to pray for more patients because I know the Lord will be faithful to bring somethin…

Hosea 2:8-9

Even in the rough and dry season of our lives, the seasons where we feel as if the Lord is everywhere but with us He is there providing. These few verses are proof of the Lord’s kind hearted nature. Gomer was an adulterous woman who the Lord still loved and provided for. Even in the midst of her sin He was there providing for her. The Lord is constantly providing for His children regardless of if His children see it or not. Even when His children are completely lost and broken He is there to provide for them. When we start to think that we are getting somewhere on our own or when we begin to believe that there is nothing to thank the Lord for because we are unable to see the little things that He has given us we need to stop and repent from that way of thinking. The Lord is always the One providing us with our weekly paychecks that we rely on. The Lord is constantly the One providing the food that we eat, the water we drink, the air that we breath. To be blind to that is the walk in th…

Galatians 6:7

If we plant a peach seed we will come back in due time to find a peach tree. If we plant an apple seed, in due time we will have an apple tree. If we plant a lime seed and we come back in due time we will not come back to a tree filled with lemons, it just doesn't work that way. When we plant a seed we must not expect anything other than what we have planted. If we plant sin and we come back in due time we cant expect a blessing. Sin will only reap sin. While good will reap good. There is no way around this. God will not be mocked and He makes sure that whatever we sow we will also reap. But the part that I tend to mess up on is in the “due time” I plant a seed of good and want to come back in 24 hours to find a fully grown tree filled with blessings. I try to rush things along by giving my seed attention and attempting to help it grow along the way. But the seed doesn't need my help, it just needs time. The seed doesn't need me to come back and check on in every five seco…

Psalm 27:13-14

It is important to remain confident that the Lord will come through. Sometimes we pray to God asking the same questions for days, months, or even years without a response. But we must know and truly believe one thing, we will see the goodness of the Lord and we must wait on Him. We need to remain in good courage without doubting His love and His promises. The word of the Lord proves true and we must stand steadfast upon that truth. Psalm 18:30 “This God—his way is perfect; the word of the LORD proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.” The Lord will provide us with the strength that we need to press on and as soon as we believe we dot need His strength and we try to rely on our own is when we will fall to the ground. We must press on and know for an absolute fact that whatever the Lord is doing and whatever we cant see it is being worked out for His plan and His great and divine purpose. As David waited on the Lord He didn't just sit around waiting. He was …

Psalm 24:7

The Lord doesn’t forget anything but that doesn't mean that he choices to remember. When we come to the Lord asking Him for forgiveness He is never short on forgiving us of our disgusting sins. Something just as great as His forgiveness is that we have a list of zero wrongs. Our list of wrongs is a blank sheet of paper, there is absolutely nothing on it. Even though that is a fact that I know I often forget it. I forget that the Lord makes the choice, not one that He as to make by any means, but He choices to not remember. He is so merciful and He is so incredibly loving that no human being will ever be able to understand it. As humans we tend to walk by emotions, we walk by what we feel and not what we know. I catch myself tripping on my emotions on a daily basis. I forget what I know and I focus on what I feel. This isn't me trying to invalidate emotions, the Lord gave us emotions for a reason, but He never intended on us to focus on them.  If the Lord has forgiven me and I k…

Colossians 1:21-23

Steadfast. Being and staying steadfast. steadfastness has always been one of my bigger if not my biggest struggle. Being patient and waiting on the Lord and His perfect timing is where I tend to fall and slip up the most. “Okay God, if you aren't going to come through for me I’ll just have to do it myself because I know better.” When I go outside of the will of God and I blatantly decide to do things in my own timing that is basically what I am saying to God. I am saying that “God, Your plans aren't good enough for me I want more than what you have to offer me”. In Nehemiah, we are told how he has this great desire to go help in Jerusalem and you know what he does? He waits, he waits for 4 months, tells nobody of His struggle, he only bring it to God through prayer. Eventually, the Lord bring the situation around where He talks to the King and the King releases him from the duties of a cupbearer to go and help the people of Jerusalem. Nehemiah didn't get tired of waiting o…

Matthew 13:45-46

I really do enjoy this parable, the parable of the merchant and the pearl. The Lord is comparing the Kingdom of Heaven to a pearl and how this merchant sold everything that he had to have this one pearl. How much more so should we be willing to sell everything that we own for God and His Glory? How much more so Should I be willing to drop everything, leave everything behind, for His names sake? The more I sit here and really think about it the longer the list gets, the list of things that the Lord is asking me to give up that I am not letting go of. My knuckles are white from grasping these things for so long and I am tired of it. I even allow worries to hold me back. Worries of my future, worries about my family, worries about pretty much anything that I can worry about. But an amazing thing that we receive from the Lord is to cast all of our burdens on Him. Psalm 55:22 “Cast your burdens on the Lord, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.” The Lord …

Romans 12:16

“Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion.”
Romans 12:16

The way in which we think controls our outward appearance. Especially for me, if you spend 5 minutes with me you'll understand what my emotion is always clearly presented in my facial expressions. It's both a blessing and a curse, when I need someone to talk to the people around me always know something is bugging me but when it's over something stupid i can't get away with a negative thought with the people around me. Not that I can ever get away with it when it comes to God.
No matter what we are thinking our body will follow, that's why it is so important to be of one kind with team mates. To make sure that you all have to same end goal in mind and that you are focusing on God on not ourselves. We are no better than when we were running from the Lord. We can't change the fact that we are all gross sinn…

Matthew 20:26-28

Matthew 20:26-28

The Lord Jesus could have easy come to this earth and proven to all that He was the Lord of Lords and the King of Kings, but no, He stayed humble. He could have come here and demanded to be served. Demanded to be waited on hand and foot, but did He do that? No. Jesus came to serve us. The Lord of all creation came to earth to serve His own creation. Jesus constantly poured Himself out for others. Never once did He complain "Well actually I don't want to do that today. You see I am your Lord and I am the Son of God." He never said that. How much more so should we, His creation, be willing to serve our creator? I would hope that all of our answers would be the same, we would give our lives to the cause. We would give our lives over to Him committing our lives to be servants of the Lord Jesus Christ.
Even those in Leadership position are called to be servants. Verse 26 tells us how even the great among us must be servants. In a perfect world this would work…

Galatians 5:13

Yes, we were given freedom in Christ. He came to sacrifice His life so that I would be free. He came to carry the weight of my sin, he came to take the punishment of my sin for me. This freedom is given without charge, all we have to do is believe in him, believe in the Lord. Just because you're forgiven and we can ask for forgiveness and repent at anytime, it doesn't give us a free pass to continue living in sin. We can't actually live in that freedom until we are dead men. The Lord gives us that freedom once we understand what it is to be obedient to him. He will not start speaking into our lives until we are dead to the things of our past. We can't use the Lord as as a body wash. He isn't there to cleanse us once we become too dirty to handle it. Unfortunately, I used the Lord that way for countless years. I only came to Him when I absolutely needed Him and I knew that I couldn't do it myself. I came back just before it was too late. I would go back to churc…

Ephesians 5:21

The Lord calls me to be a dead man. Dead men don't have a voice nor do they do anything in their own will. Dead men have to be told what to do and they also don't have emotion. They don't complain and they don't grumble.they just listen and do, nothing more and nothing less. They have submitted themselves to the way of the Lord. Submit, "to stop trying to fight or resist something: to agree to do or accept something that you have been resisting or opposing. In respect of what the Lord calls us to do I have to submit just like that. I have to willingly and openly submit to others without complaint and without a bad thought in my heart. The Lord looks at my heart, not what I am doing for the face I might be putting on. Because I am people but for the Lord. If a friend asks me to do something and should be acting as if Jesus Himself had asked me to do it. My heart should be filled with the joy of the Lord always and all that I do should reflect that. Even the smalle…

Romans 15:1

We are all weak human beings but through the Holy Spirit, the Lord blesses us with His strength. The keyword in that sentence is His, His strength. It isn't my strength, it isn't your strength, but it is the Lord's strength. I often find myself forgetting how badly I need the Lord's strength, but I remembered while climbing Agua, that's for sure. I also tend to forget that nothing is actually mine, including strength.

I struggle to use that strength and give it to those who are weak. I often use His strength in my life to focus on myself. I take that strength and I run with it. So let's face it, I'm selfish. I use the strength to patch myself up. Forgetting that even in His strength, I am still human. Forgetting that regardless I am still weak in my own strength without the Lord. Forgetting that the Lord has blessed me with His strength to help others, and to build up my neighbor.

I am called to bear in the failings of the weak with the strength of the Lor…

Hebrews 13:5

“Lord why am I here? Why have you called me here and left me? Why have you taken me from home and pulled me here just to cease talking to me?” Things that I have been asking the Lord over and over again for, well the entire time that I have been here? To my surprise I received an answer. He answered me in a way that I wasn't expecting. He came back to me with another question. “Okay, Val, answer this. If you are so upset about leaving him, what is back there for you that is so important? What is back there for you that you are able to find contentment in?” In those simple questions, I found my answer. My answer wasn't what I wanted to hear, my answer was painful. Back home my contentment was found in temporary things, temporary people, and temporary situations. My contentment was worldly. Now, the Lord is calling me to be content here, in Antigua Guatemala, to grow where I am planted. The Lord hasn't failed to keep confirming this to me…He hasn't failed to confirm the …

Luke 3:14

Being in a state of contentment where I can make it through most of the day without being discontent is far from my comprehension, let alone living in that contentment. Sitting at the Lord’s feet waiting PATIENTLY for my next instruction, if I'm being honest, blows my mind. How much stuff do I own that I don't even need? How many things did I buy just to buy? Endless. There are currently about 20 boxes sitting in my room at my parents house filled with stuff that I had in my old apartment. Things that I didn't need but bought for the sake of buying them. When packing my things to come here to Guatemala, about .5% of that stuff came with me. About .5% of that stuff I actually found useful in my day to day life. It has taken me a long time to realize that contentment isn't found in worldly items nor anything else of the world. It is something that I have to keep giving to the Lord every day. I have to allow myself to shift my focus and find my contentment in His love and…

Phillipians 4:11

Paul is stating here how He learned to be content. when we learn something, a new skill for example, the knowledge isn't freely given to us. It isn't a one step process where at the end the Lord gives us the knowledge the second we end our prayer with Amen. Learning is constant, we never stop learning. Learning is defined as “the acquisition of knowledge or skills through experience.” The Lord will give us those experiences to teach us, to give us that learning process. He will have us go through trailing times in which we can chose to grow in our faith and the comfort that we find in the truth of His word. If I fast forward to Philippians 4:13 Paul states “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” If I am in the Lords will and if His desires are my desires, He will not fail to give me the strength to fulfill His will or plan for my life. He will give me the strength to go through season in which I will learn not only to be content but to be wise, to love with Godly…

Psalm 17:15

From the moment that I awake I should be satisfied. From the very beginning of each and every day I should be satisfied in the Lord. If I am being completely honest, I often forget to come before the Lord the second I wake up, before I even get out of bed. I often forget to ask the Lord for my desires to match His desires for my life, let alone that specific day. I often find myself lacking joy, lacking wisdom, lacking the Lord in my day. It is then that I realize I am lacking those things because I never came before the Lord and asked Him to fill me with His joy. I never came before Him that day to ask him for His wisdom. Looking at the word awake in another sense, we are never to be asleep in the Lord. We should be constantly moving forward, constantly seeking to be at the foot of the cross waiting for Him to speak into our lives. The Lord warns us, multiple times in 1st Thessalonians 5:2, 1st Peter 3:10, Revelation 16:15, etc. that He will be coming like a thief in the night. No man…

Philippians 4:11

Paul is stating here how He learned to be content. when we learn something, a new skill for example, the knowledge isn't freely given to us. It isn't a one step process where at the end the Lord gives us the knowledge the second we end our prayer with Amen. Learning is constant, we never stop learning. Learning is defined as “the acquisition of knowledge or skills through experience.” The Lord will give us those experiences to teach us, to give us that learning process. He will have us go through trailing times in which we can chose to grow in our faith and the comfort that we find in the truth of His word. If I fast forward to Philippians 4:13 Paul states “I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” If I am in the Lords will and if His desires are my desires, He will not fail to give me the strength to fulfill His will or plan for my life. He will give me the strength to go through season in which I will learn not only to be content but to be wise, to love with Godly…

Hebrews 13:5

“Lord why am I here? Why have you called me here and left me? Why have you taken me from home and pulled me here just to cease talking to me?” Things that I have been asking the Lord over and over again for, well the entire time that I have been here? To my surprise I received an answer. He answered me in a way that I wasn't expecting. He came back to me with another question. “Okay, Val, answer this. If you are so upset about leaving him, what is back there for you that is so important? What is back there for you that you are able to find contentment in?” In those simple questions, I found my answer. My answer wasn't what I wanted to hear, my answer was painful. Back home my contentment was found in temporary things, temporary people, and temporary situations. My contentment was worldly. Now, the Lord is calling me to be content here, in Antigua Guatemala, to grow where I am planted. The Lord hasn't failed to keep confirming this to me…He hasn't failed to confirm the …

Luke 3:14

Being in a state of contentment where I can make it through most of the day without being discontent is far from my comprehension, let alone living in that contentment. Sitting at the Lord’s feet waiting PATIENTLY for my next instruction, if I'm being honest, blows my mind. How much stuff do I own that I don't even need? How many things did I buy just to buy? Endless. There are currently about 20 boxes sitting in my room at my parents house filled with stuff that I had in my old apartment. Things that I didn't need but bought for the sake of buying them. When packing my things to come here to Guatemala, about .5% of that stuff came with me. About .5% of that stuff I actually found useful in my day to day life. It has taken me a long time to realize that contentment isn't found in worldly items nor anything else of the world. It is something that I have to keep giving to the Lord every day. I have to allow myself to shift my focus and find my contentment in His love and…

Timothy 6:6-8

Contentment, a state of happiness and satisfaction. The Lord tells us in these verses to be content in Him. All that we could possibly NEED besides the Lord is food and clothing. How often do I make the mistake of thinking that I need something other than the Lord, too often. I often find myself thinking about when I will be content in life. I will be content when I have this job, I will be content when I get married, I will be content when I have this, that, or the other thing. But what a great reality it is to realize that we can not possibly take anything out of this world with us. We can carry no friendship, no relationship, no job, nor any item into eternity with us yet I find myself looking all around me for temporary satisfactions. These temporary satisfactions will only lead me to a place in which I am deceiving myself, in a place farther from the Lord than I should be. If I’m being honest, I often become frustrated with the Lord when I don’t see what I want coming in the near…

Hebrews 6:12

In this verse the Lord is calling us to a life of being alert. He is calling us to imitate others seeking the Lord through their faith and their patience. In order to imitate those around us we must first bring ourselves to a place in which we can be fead. Surrounding ourselves with others who're seeking the same things, becoming more like the Lord, is an extremely important thing. We can’t possibly do this on our own in a world such as this. The world in which we live in is corrupt. The things in which the world focuses on are completely based on self and what the individual wants, but here is a huge secret, it doesn't matter what the individual wants, it’s all about what the Lord wants. I understand completely that it must be hard to accept that for an unbeliever, trust me, I was there. But what happens when everyone comes to a place in which they demand exactly what they want and what they desire? Chaos, a whole lot of chaos. When we surround ourselves with worldly people t…

Revelation 1:9

Here John is introducing himself to the seven churches in Revelations as their brother and their partner. This speaks volumes on his character showing how humble he is saying how he is one of them. That he is just another follower of the Lord. John is saying how he is a brother and partner in the great tribulation, the kingdom, and the patient endurance. The Lord calls us to endure for His sake, He calls us to stick out the tribulations and you know what is so amazing? We will be welcomed into the kingdom of God for doing so. My life is but a pencil mark compared to the length of eternity. But one crazy thing about this pencil mark is that our eternity depends on what we do here. So when looking at the grand scheme of things how can we not patiently endure for His names sake? How can we not aim to love the Lord with all that we are? The Lord promises us great and wonderful things in the Kingdom of God. We need only to endure the hardships and tribulations. How sweet will it be when th…

Colossians 1:11

Once you decide to accept the Lord into your heart He doesn't fail to give you strength when you ask for it. The Lord has an endless abundance of strength and power that can be accessed via the Holy Spirit when the Lord allows.The Lord allows for us to do things in His strength due to the fact that it allows us to fulfill the plans in which He has. These plans that He strengthens us for will not fail to glorify His name in the end, no matter how long it takes.The Lord’s purpose for our lives is this, that He will show His endless power and glory. The crazy part about this is the fact that He doesn't need us to do anything, but because He loves us He uses us. He uses the broken to show just how amazing His love and mercy is. The Lord calls us to have patience and endurance for His sake. Our flesh, by nature, is not born with either of those qualities. Speaking more specifically about myself, I have zero strength in my own power. I lack both patience and endurance, but because I …

Luke 21:19

When it comes to loving the Lord, endurance is key. When we are enduring something we are sticking it out though the good times and the bad times. Following the Lord isn't a promised easy life, but it is promised to be worth it.  The Lord actually promises that hard times and temptation will come our way, it’s not a big secret. If we look a little bit further back in this chapter of Luke we actually see that Jesus is telling them that a famine will come their way, earthquakes will take place, and great diseases will come. Then in verse 21:19 the Lord promises that it will be worth is to stand by Him, and because the Lord is outside of time He knows what will come. He knows the things that are going to take place, that is why He is able to tell them and warn them. He isn't telling them this because God Himself is going to bring these horrible things upon them but because He knows the enemy will. This verse really makes me think of the story of Job. (I would suggest that if you do…

Luke 8:11-15

Something that a lot of people fail to realize is the fact that the enemy doesn't attack the dead. The enemy attacks what it is threatened by. Satan wont go out of his way seeking to bring bad things and hard times to those who are not interested in the Lord. If we are not rooting ourselves in the Lord the enemy can come out of nowhere, cause us to stumble, and cause us to take steps back in our walk with the Lord. Honestly, I was that way for years. I stood on the rock that is God but I wasn't held down and whenever hard times came I turned from the Lord. I turned because I was angry and bitter towards the one who loves me the most. I was mistaking the hard times as coming from God when in reality it wasn’t Him at all. If you're argument for not taking root in the Lord because you enjoy your life the way it is then think about it this way. If you place a frog in a boiling pot of water it will jump out immediately, but if you place it in cold water and gradually warm it th…

Ephesians 5:15-17

As a disciple of Jesus Christ I have to use my time, my limited time, to the best of my ability. I have to walk in the wisdom that God provides for me. I have to make sacrifices in my life according to what is important. As I’m sitting here in Antigua Guatemala, with only 4 hours of wifi access a week I realize the little importance of it, especially when it comes to social media. The enemy definitely uses social media to distract me in my walk with the Lord. I strongly believe that people are too connected. No one needs to know everything that is going on in anyones life 24/7. I know that this is true for me, and I’m sure others, but when I look at social media I rarely end up closing the Facebook tab feeling satisfied with what I had just looked at. I usually end us seeing something or reading a status that I didn't care to read and it can ruin my mood in an instant. On the other hand, not all media is negative, some is an extremely useful tool in which the Lord has blessed us w…

James 1:5

As I sit here in Antigua Guatemala on an extremely chilly morning in the court yard looking at the top of the Agua volcano I wonder how I ended up here. This obviously wasn't in my own power, both God and I knew that I needed something radical in order to turn my life around. God, who knows all, picked me up out of Hanover Massachusetts and Flew me 8 hours south to Central America. God’s wisdom is abundantly greater than my own, and intact I wouldn't have an ounce of wisdom without Him. My God can see what happened, what is happening, and what is going to happen. He knows the way for me. The Lord has an amazing plan for me and He has that because He is wise. “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare (peace) and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11. God already knows my future because He lives outside of time. He has a plan and I have no idea what that is. God has mad me some promises for my life and I know that my God …

2nd Corinthians 1:12

How will we ever be true disciples of the world if we mistake ourselves for being part of it? The simple answer is that we wont. Being a disciple of Jesus Christ isn't the easy road, it isn't filled with rainbows, unicorns, and flowers. It’s difficult sacrificing yourself. and when I say yourself I mean ALL of yourself, and if I have learned one thing here it is that all means ALL. But Jesus sacrificed His life for mine, so why would I not do the same in return? Giving up all control of my life is probably my biggest struggle right now. I am so far from home and I have no control over what is happening in the lives of the people that I love. I just have to trust that God has them and that He is working in their lives.Even though I struggle with most of what I am called to give up and be obedient to I cant deny that the out come will be more that worth it. God’s plan may not be easy but He is going to use me and He has a plan for my life that is bigger and better than anything …

Psalm 111:10

What is wisdom? The quality of having experience, knowledge and good judgement. (New Oxford Dictionary) How often am I willing to hear my Lord’s wisdom? Not as often as I should, thats for sure. The great thing about our Lord is the fact that He didn't need to come to the earth to show us He understood and had the experience, knowledge, and good judgement, but he did. Jesus Christ came to this earth with the wisdom of the Lord in Him. He had an ear willing to listen to God’s voice. Being more like my Lord, Jesus Christ, is something that I try to strive for on a daily basis, and every single day I fall short of that because I am imperfect, but if I carry the wisdom of the Lord with me I don't have to trip up on the little things. If I practice wisdom and I mean really practice it, I can only imagine what God will show me in return.  God calls us to love each other unconditionally because why? Because it wise. My Lord understands how wise it is to love one another as He has firs…

James 3:13-17

The Lord’s heart is a vast ocean of love and mercy but more often than not I forget how deep and how wide that is. Both bitterness and jealousy are things that I struggle with on a daily basis. I have a hard time forgiving people the same way that my Savior forgave me. I struggle to not be jealous of the people around me. Being a girl there is always something telling me me that I have to be the prettiest and that I have to be the skinniest, but why? If the Lord is perfection He can not possibly create word that is imperfect. “I praise, you for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works. My soul knows it very well.” My God doesn't make mistakes. Selfishness is another one of those things that can try to take root in my life. I can look at what I think I have and think that I cant give that up because I worked so hard for it. But you know what, it wasn't my work. Nothing that I do has ever been done in my own power. All of my power is of the Lord and who am I…