A Revelation of God

Studying on the names of God recently, I have had some spiritual revelations about Who and What God is in my life.  Being a single mom means the weight of responsibility in your household rests solely on you.  Sometimes it’s hard to explain your struggles when you talk to couples who have never been divorced and married for years to the same spouse.  I remember talking to one of my girlfriends who literally said she didn’t think I had it so bad.  She felt single all the time even though she was married and had been to the same man for over twenty years.

Now, I’m not sure if it’s the same for all single moms because some may not have been married or lived long term with their children’s fathers.  But if you have ever had a man in your life full time it is extremely difficult to adjust to not having one.  Little things you take for granted.  Like, knowing there is some peace of mind when you go to sleep at night that you are not alone if something happens; knowing that there IS opportunity for money to come in from somewhere other than your own sources as you juggle the house and the kids.

Out of all the wonderful names of God in the Bible the one that touched me the most during this study was Yahweh-raah, my Shepherd.  The role of the shepherd in Biblical times was an important one.  The flock was watched over 24/7/365.  The responsibility of the flock was great.  It required seeing to the feeding of the lambs and the sheep by bringing them to good pasture lands and water, grooming and clipping the flock, delivering new lambs, leading the flock and teaching them to stay together, going off after the wandering lost ones, and protecting the sheep night and day in every way.

As a single mom God wants you to trust Him as your shepherd. Will you allow God to lead and comfort you in EVERY area of your life like the shepherd does for his flock?  Let God take every worry, and give you every comfort as one of his cherished lambs.  You are worthy of His care and attention.

My prayer is that you can learn to give over every care in your life

to the Shepherd and let Him see to every care you have.


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Do Not Fear

 

Do Not Fear

Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the Everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. And He does not become weary or tired. And His understanding no one can fathom.

He gives strength to the weary, and increases power to the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young people stumble and fall, but those who wait on the LORD will renew their strength; They will soar on wings like eagles, They will run and not grow weary, They will walk and not be faint.

So do not fear, for I am with you, says the Lord; 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. All who rage against you will surely be ashamed and disgraced; those who oppose you will be as nothing and perish. Though you search for your enemies, you will not find them. All who wage war against you will be as nothing at all. For I am the Lord your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you tonight…

Do not fear.


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The Joy of the Lord

“1-3 The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners; to proclaim the favorable year of the Lord and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who  mourn, to grant those who mourn in Zion, giving them a garland instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting.  So they will be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.

4-9 Then they will rebuild the ancient ruins, they will raise up the former devastations; and they will repair the ruined cities, the desolations of many generations.  Strangers will stand and pasture your flocks, and foreigners will be your farmers and your vinedressers.  But you will be called the priests of the Lord; you will be spoken of as ministers of our God. You will eat the wealth of nations, and in their riches you will boast.  Instead of your shame  you will have a double portion, and instead of humiliation they will shout for joy over their portion.  Therefore they will possess a double portion in their land, everlasting joy will be theirs.  For I, the Lord, love justice, I hate robbery in the burnt offering; and I will faithfully give them their recompense and make an everlasting covenant with them.  Then their offspring will be known among the nations, and their descendants in the midst of the peoples.  All who see them will recognize them because they are the offspring whom the Lord has blessed.”

~Isaiah 61:1-9

In the fullness of heaven’s joys we shall receive more than double for all our services and sufferings.  I have been in the midst of a revelation of God’s joy lately.  The past few weeks it’s as if this well of overflowing, abundant, fountain of joy is just flowing out of my heart, mind, and spirit.  It’s truly overwhelming and a bit humbling.

Verses 1-3 were repeated by Jesus in the synagogue He grew up in after he was baptized by John the Baptist.  How amazing is that to know?  The first thing Jesus did was go proclaim the favorable year of the Lord and liberty to the captives of sin!  He took them from their desolate state, just like Zion in Isaiah, and made them oaks of righteousness to be known among the nations as blessed by the Lord.  He replaced their mourning with the Joy of the Lord!

The mourners in Zion were the powerless, the have-nots, people without a place to fall back in the world, the weak, the captive, the bound, and the believer in the midst of hardships.  If your life is in ruin, or if you feel your spirit is an abandon wreck, and you are grieving and mourning your loss, cling to this hope-only people who know how to truly grieve will know the true joy that comes from God!  “Those who are in sorrow are blessed, they will be comforted.” ~Matthew 5:4

I’m searching for my joy today.  There’s been a lot going on in my life lately and the joy I used to have isn’t running over anymore.  I’m having to look deep down inside the cup to even find a drop it seems lately.  If you’re struggling right along with me, I’m praying for you today, too.

“Lord, fill us with Your peace and love so that Your joy shines through us as we rest in You.  Amen.”

Embrace the joy of the Lord today!

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Trust God

trust

“I am training you to find Me in each moment and to be a channel of My loving Presence.  Sometimes My blessings come to you in mysterious ways:  through pain and trouble.  At such times you can know My goodness only through your trust in Me.  Understanding will fail you, but trust will keep you close to Me.”  ~Taken from:  Jesus Calling Devotions for Every Day of the Year by Sarah Young

I like the paraphrasing this author uses for trusting God.  But you have to be careful sometimes when you start talking about God bringing pain into people’s lives.  There are camps on both sides of the argument.  Personally, I don’t care if you feel God brings pain for a reason or just allows it to happen to you.  As long as at the heart of the matter, when you are in the throes of whatever is afflicting you, you look for God and trust that HE is your blessing and help in time of need no matter the cause.  Don’t think about the why or the how, just focus on Him for your peace and clarity.

This is where I find myself today.  Heartbroken, lost, worried, scared, angry… you name it I’m feeling it right now for a multitude of reasons.  The devil is having a field day with what I thought was a seasoned faith.  I’m going back to the beginning, relying on the basics, the foundations of my faith. God’s got this, too.

My prayer for everyone going through this kind of season

is that we find God in each and every moment and are able to rest in Him.


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Fresh Perspective

A-New-Perspective

Even those of us who are the most resistant to new year’s resolutions will still stop and think about the status of our lives at the beginning of a new year.  It’s an inherent part of human nature, to improve upon your circumstance.  If you’re hungry, you look for food.  If you’re ambitious, you look for the next challenge.  If you’re in a relationship, you’re looking for signs that you both are ready for the next step.  No matter what part of the spectrum of self preservation you occupy, you are looking to move ahead.  I want to talk to you about a way of thinking that dramatically changed my life several years ago.  It’s basic, true.  But used in many contexts you might not have thought about, it’s also revolutionary for shaping your life, or more importantly, how you see your life.

In 2 Corinthians 10:5 Paul states, “…we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ.”

Not to school you on grammar or anything but the phrase we are taking is the active verb tense.  Your action is up to you.  If you want to have a fresh perspective in your situation even though it seems nothing is changing no matter how hard you work toward that end, then you are going to have to mentally take action and be proactive to claim your positive perspective.

Romans 12:2 says, “…but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think.”

For you to get a vivid idea of the word transformed/changed here, use the analogy of death to life.  I know that’s a drastic contrast but it’s very a realistic representation of what can happen in your heart, mind, and life if you learn how to use this skill daily.  A key hidden in the verse above is that after the transformation, THEN you have the renewing of your mind.  YOU have to let God transform your mind and heart, learn to take captive every thought, THEN you will see the transforming power of God in your life.

One of the amazing things about God is His grace.  Some of this may read like ancient Greek to you, and that’s ok. Let me break it down real simple for you.  When I first came back to God years ago, I had a potty mouth like you would not believe.  And even though it was somewhat easy to physically stop saying words I shouldn’t, mentally I was still thinking them.  I got in the habit of every time one of those words or a phrase would cross my mind of repeating a Bible verse I could memorize.  So very literally I would take captive that thought in the moment,  and use God’s Word to transform my thoughts.  Wanna know what verse I used to accomplish this?  And what verse I STILL use to this day when a thought that shouldn’t cross my mind does?  2 Corinthians 10:5, the very first scripture I quoted above.  Even all these years later and further along in my faith I still use that basic scripture to harness the transforming power of God in my heart and mind.

God accepts us for who we are right now and doesn’t leave us where we are.  Don’t worry about people who think less of you because of your struggle; worry about what God thinks of you.  In Psalm 139: 14-18 we learn that we are so precious to God that even before he made us, our imperfections were known to Him.  Even with our bad choices and struggles He seen and ordained our days on this Earth.  You have to want transformation in your life and ask Him for it.  He is faithful to renew your heart, mind, and life today.  Ask Him for the strength and wisdom to seek Him and His Word daily to transform your situation.

What can you do today to start viewing your situation with a fresh perspective?

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