Thursday, December 27, 2012

A New Year for Adventure

“Each day is an exciting adventure with God. You never know how God is going to show up, move or orchestrate things for your good.” (Unknown)

What defines an adventure? As children, most of us dream big dreams for our lives; we want to really be someone who makes a difference. As we mature into our teen years, we have big ideas to go on an exciting journey, have a successful career, a perfect marriage and family. But sometimes life doesn’t work out like we planned, and it’s all too easy to lose sight of our big dreams and instead settle for a predictable, ordinary life. Many of us go through the motions of everyday life barely feeling, inspiring, growing, or daring as we should. But God created us for adventure! He encourages us to move ahead, take action, and follow through.

“For I know the plans I have for you,”  declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)

Life changes day by day and we enter into the unknown, and whether things are going good or bad, God made us to long for adventure and He will see us through to a glorious conclusion. We could choose to see a day as a journey to nowhere, but we do have choices! And every day should be a journey to discover a new meaning in our lives; whether it’s spending time with family or friends, treating ourselves to something special, volunteering to help someone who has a need, or tackling a long overdue project. When we are inspired by some great purpose, step out of our comfort zone and embrace it, we become alive and excited and enjoy ourselves in the process.

“O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.” (Psalm 139:1-3)

God, who knows our future, encourages us to believe that we can do any task that He has planned for us, and He wants us to join Him and see what surprises await us! Rather than drift through life without a purpose, we have to follow our heart’s calling, take action and follow through and be motivated to want more. Just by waking up to being alive, trying something new and breaking our old patterns, we can change our lives into a fulfilling adventure. To be successful in the journey we have to walk in God’s strength, not our own, and when we honor and praise Him through our commitment to obedience the possibilities of ways our days can come more alive and feel like a fascinating adventure is absolutely endless!

Blessings and hugs for an adventurous New Year!!

 Linking up with:

Sunday, December 23, 2012

God's Gift of Hope

“For to us a child is born, to us a Son is given, and He will be called wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” ( Isaiah 9:6 cond.)

Christmas is an incredible reminder that God is faithful and carries out every promise He has made to us. In the beginning, He promised His people He would send someone to rescue them, and God is a God who always keeps His promises. He fulfilled His greatest promise of all; He sent His one and only Son Jesus, to redeem us and save us! The most wonderful gift of hope that has ever been given is the gift of Jesus, who brought us His promise of unconditional love, unending hope, and eternal life. And the amazing thing about His wonderful gift, is that not only are we able to receive this gift, but we are able to share it with others!

“Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!”

The portrait of Jesus Christ is one of divine love; a love that has no end and knows no bounds; He brought to us eternal life to everyone who believes in Him. Our response to His unlimited love for us is that we love Him back and share His gift of love and hope to everyone we meet. Imagine how people’s lives would be changed if they understood the true meaning of the Christmas gift? The seeds that we plant here on earth will pass onward even after we are long gone. And God has gifted each and every one of us to bear much fruit; to be a fruitful branch, blossoming and sharing His gift of hope to everyone who crosses our path. When God gave us Jesus He fulfilled His promises and brought about everything He had said. He gave us the gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. This kind of gift is a promise as well as a commandment, and as with all commandments, it is our responsibility to make it an active part of our lives. We need to persistently sow these seeds of love, seeds of hope, and seeds of encouragement in our daily walk.

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)

One of the best gifts God has given us is the privilege to give and enjoy the blessings, and the presence of God upon you and in you. Jesus Christ is God’s perfect gift to all people. He came to this earth to die in our place to offer us eternal life, and God plans to enjoy loving us for all eternity! He is announcing to the world that His perfect gift of hope will change your life; the gift of Jesus changes our future. Let us praise God for His glorious grace, and for the gift of hope He has given us in His dear Son…

May the true gift of Christmas remain forever in your heart!
Linking up with Spiritual Sundays

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Scattering Christmas Joy

But the Angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David, a Savior has been born to you; He is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11)

People everywhere look forward to the Christmas holiday season to…

·         Celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ…

·         Decorate the Christmas tree and admire all the brilliant lights that twinkle and shine …

·         Attend festive parties and gatherings with family and friends…

·         Sip hot chocolate and bake Christmas candies and cookies…

·         Take part in or be a recipient of Christmas carolers…

·         Watch a child’s excitement as they wait in anticipation for Santa Claus to arrive…

Sadly, many people also have a hard time finding joy during the Christmas holiday. If there has ever been a time and need for people to hear about the hope of the world (Jesus Christ), and what true Christmas joy is, now is the time. There are so many folks who have heavy hearts because they have lost a loved one, are in financial distress, are facing a life threatening illness, or they are simply lost souls who are unhappy and disheartened. The festival of Christmas should be celebrated all over the world because of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ who brought us hope and joy. There are so many ways for us to scatter joy and bless others this holiday season with…

·         Words of encouragement and spending quality time with those in need

·         Acts of service-volunteering in your community donating toys, gifts, food

·         Giving a creative gift from your heart

·         The divine gift of forgiveness to those who have hurt or betrayed us

·         Letting our light shine as we share the good news to encourage and build others up

For God who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made His light shine in our hearts, to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6)

What brings you Christmas joy?

Christmas is all about renewing bonds of love, joy, and compassion; it is a time to spread smiles and be merry. It is the time of year to see the world through eyes of love just as Jesus did. Christmas joy can be contagious even in times of distress when we share the wondrous gift and the Good News that God sent to us through His Son. It’s all about sharing and forgetting our sorrows and doing something good for others. It’s the perfect time to express our love to our family and friends and everyone we come into contact with. Jesus was born as an example of how to be happy in this world by sharing His love…scattering joy from deep within to everyone we meet is spreading Good News!

After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. And going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. (Matthew 2:9-11)

Linking up this week with:
USE this for BLOG

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Be Broken

“The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.” (Psalms 34:18)

We associate brokenness as being fragile, insignificant, injured, worthless, and damaged. If something is broken, we want to return it and exchange it for one that isn’t damaged, or simply throw it out. When we think of ourselves as failures or disappointments, we feel worthless and of no value to anyone. But not all things that are broken should be tossed! Brokenness is the means by which God achieves some of His inmost work within our hearts. He uses the breaking process to change, reinforce, and bless us. The point of our brokenness is to draw us nearer to God; He takes our brokenness and makes us valuable for Him.

      “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.”    (2 Corinthians 12:10)

We are all guilty at some point of acting independently and doing things our way. When we are strong in skills or resources we are tempted to do things our way instead of Gods way. But when we are broken we stop long enough to listen. Just like Peter, who was a spontaneous, independent and rebellious disciple, we have to be broken and transformed in order for God to get our attention and allow Him to fill us with His power and make us effective for Him. God decides what we need in order to grow and develop.

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:2)

Brokenness is the dying of our flesh (our pride, resistance, and self-will) through anguish, test and trials. It is our humble response to God and complete repentance; because when we are broken we are depending on less of us and more of Him! As the Lord works at breaking our independence on self, we are free to depend on Him as we engage in obedient action. It is a change of life style of agreeing with God and completely surrendering to Him, and when we experience this total submission we are not the same after going through it; because true brokenness begins a transformation in us.

“God indeed saves me; I am confident and unafraid. My strength and my courage is the LORD, and HE saves me.” Isaiah 12:2

Sometimes we need to allow to be broken, because if something is not changed in our lives we will not be what we should or could be! God’s intervention and direction is what strengthens our lives; He is the only one that can fix everything. He will push us to our limit and require our lives to be disciplined as we draw on His strength and push on to victory. It is never too late to find God’s healing for our brokenness!

 Linking up this week on Spiritual Sunday, Unite, Winsome Wednesday, and A Sheltering Tree

USE this for BLOG

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Choose Happy

“But may the righteous be glad and rejoice before God; may they be happy and joyful.” (Psalm 68:3)

Sometimes it’s not easy to start your day with a “happy face”; there are days when the moment our feet hit the floor and we get out of bed, things go wrong! And when things go wrong, sometimes we just get “stuck”. But I have always believed that it doesn’t have to be that way; it’s really a mindset, because most times happiness is a choice. Happiness comes from within and is a state of mind, and our attitude when things don’t go as planned is what makes us choose happy rather than hopeless. I have found that my day goes so much better when I begin it with the Lord; a simple “good morning” Lord starts my day in a joyful frame of mind. When I set aside time in my morning to read my bible, inspirational posts and devotionals, and end it in prayer before I focus on the events of the day, I feel more in control and more in line with how I want my day to run its course.

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have and enjoy life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10)

Unfortunately as our day evolves, there will be times when we come under attack, and Satan messes with our feelings and attitudes. That’s his job, to put negative, critical, and judgmental thoughts in our head and try to rob us of our joy in the Lord.  Suddenly, things are just not working out like we planned, and Satan is accomplishing what he set out to do. But STOP (!), there are ways to win this battle that he is trying to create in our life. Nothing is stronger than God’s Word, and His Word promises us that He will get us through life’s challenges and difficulties. He intended for us to live a rich, joy-filled life full of abundance until it overflows!

“Be joyful always, pray continuously; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16)

We don’t need a special occasion, something new, or an exciting event to choose happy; most of our days are routine and many of us take these ordinary and repetitive things for granted. We forget about embracing the ordinary and find pleasure in life’s everyday circumstances. But our happiness shouldn’t revolve around new opportunity, fortune or success. When we make a conscious decision to give thanks in all circumstances we begin to see the simple and conventional things with a new perspective. Those whose hearts are alive with faith recognize the blessings in everyday things; they can be happy for no reason at all! Some days it may be a real task to choose happy, but we must challenge ourselves to choose joy no matter what is going on and stick with the promises of God. It’s our choice to live every day with peace, contentment and joy, and to make lots of room to let Him fill us up with His eternal grace, peace, love, and joy!

“May the God of hope fill you up with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)

Linking up this week on Spiritual Sundays, Unite at Rich Faith Rising, A Sheltering Tree, Upward Not Inward, and Winsome Wednesdays

USE this for BLOG

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Another Chance

“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:22-23)

If there is one thing that is indisputable about everyone one of us, it’s that we all have the endless capacity to mess up! Every day we try to do our best, but so often we slip up. And if there was ever a message that every one of us needed to hear again and again, it would be that God is a God of another chance!

…a new day

                              …a clean slate

                                       …the chance to do better

                                                 …an opportunity to start over

The grace of God means that even when we blow it He gives us every chance in the world to acknowledge our mistakes and ask for His forgiveness; His steadfast love and mercy are greater than any sin, and He promises His loving grace. Grace is more than just second chances and undeserved gifts. It is manifested in human failure, mistakes, weakness, and flaws, and God’s grace does not give up!

“But because of Hid great love for us, God who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions-it is by grace you have been saved.” (Ephesians 2:4-5)

Time after time, our gracious Lord gives us another chance; He is the God of new beginnings. He creates new days and gives us a fresh start…He extends GRACE!


R-Redeemed us

A-Adopted us

C-Changed us


God doesn’t give up on us as quickly as we give up on ourselves; He gives us better chances to get it right the next time. We may wonder how He can love us when we constantly mess up and fail to follow His word, but God the great forgiver grips each of us in our darkest mishaps! His love and grace is not based on our performance, but rather because we surrender our heart to Him and challenge ourselves to try harder. God continually reaches out to people like you and me that need another chance, and the more grace we receive, the more power we have over sin! It is this grace that speaks into our lives and forms our character and keeps us moving forward. God believes in us even when we don’t believe in ourselves, and we have to cling to the miracle of His grace. Every new day there is a fresh supply and the God of second chances gives us a lifetime of opportunity!

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Romans 15:13)

Linking up this week with Spiritual Sundays, Winsome Wednesdays, Rich Faith Rising, and A Sheltering Tree

USE this for BLOG

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Children of Light

“You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds, and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.” (Ephesians 4:22-24)

Putting off the old self…

Change isn’t an easy thing, and even as Christians we tend to be stubborn and return to our old ways of thinking and behaving when we are feeling vulnerable or pressure is building up. We are all trapped in the flesh, and even though we have been saved, our new nature is in constant conflict with our old nature in search of pleasing God. Putting off the old and putting on the new is a daily conscious commitment that comes as a result of the desire to live close to Jesus and have His life rub off on us so that we can experience qualities of love, joy, peace, and patience when we are tempted. Because of Jesus, our thinking has changed and the thoughts and deceptive desires that seep into our heart have been made new! We must put on the new nature, head in a new direction, and experience a new way of thinking!

“Put on your new nature, and be renewed as you learn to know your creator and become like Him” (Colossians 3:10)

Putting on the new self…

Regardless of circumstances that get in our way, we only need to think about how turning on a light can bring change to the attitude of our minds in any miserable situation. We need to open our eyes and make necessary changes in our hearts to allow God’s light to brightly shine. He said that we are the light of the world, so we better keep our attitudes and words in check and do our best to make sure our light is shining! As Christians, our purpose in life is to put on our new self and push back the darkness around us by allowing God’s light to brilliantly shine through us. Romans 12:2 says that we are transformed by the renewing of our minds, and a large part of the transformational experience means that we have to replace our old attitudes with new attitudes that are based upon His word. We must choose joy over depression, love over bitterness and light over darkness. God gives us His light freely, and His light shines through our approaches, words, and deeds. Our responsibility as Christians is to have lives so transformed by His presence that everyone can see His light shining through our acts of kindness, patience, understanding and love.

“Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you.” (Isaiah 60:1)

Our old way of life is completely in the past, and we have the possibility of doing something entirely different and living a different kind of life because we have been renewed by the attitudes of our minds. Our new self is in the likeness of God, and we should put on our new nature and let it brightly shine for everyone to see!

Linking up this week with Spiritual Sundays, Winsome Wednesday, and A Sheltering Tree