Today, I want to share an invitation for you to come to the thrown of grace. First, I want to say, welcome back to the Wednesday Devotional! Sorry for having missed a few, but I was revamping my blog, and I really hope you like it! Make sure you didn’t miss the last Wednesday Devotional too, so you can stay caught up with all we have been talking about throughout the Wednesday Devotional series! The last one was good too because it relates back to the election, even after President Trump has been elected.
Let’s look at the verse before we get started. Hebrews 4:16, “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in the time of need.”
The verse tells us that we can with confidence and with boldness come to the throne of grace. This statement is pretty remarkable. If you are like me, when I think about God and His throne, I typically picture it as untouchable, like it is just too big or too powerful to even look at much less be around. Sometimes I think God is sitting up there on His throne just watching everything happen, and we are just here suffering through life. However, this verse is inviting us to come to the throne of God!
When we come to the throne of grace, it tells us we get mercy instead of what we deserve-suffering and death. It also tells us we get grace, which we don’t even deserve. We get all of these things when we need them and even when we don’t need them.
This shows the true attributes of God. God is both merciful and just. The throne of grace reconciles these two attributes of God-God gives us mercy and grace instead of what we deserve. Jesus died on the cross to invite us to the throne of grace. God is still a God of justice, but grants us grace through the death of His Son, Jesus! Thank you, Jesus!
So, I invite you today to the throne of grace, where you can lay down all your requests to God, who answers them no matter how big or how small. His grace and mercy allow us full access to Him. We can come to Him with our whole lives, every situation, and He will respond to us. The separation, the barrier between us and God, has been bridged by the sacrifice of Jesus, so I invite you take that bridge and submit yourself to Jesus’ Lordship of your life.
So will you accept the invitation to come to the throne of grace with everything you have?
God, thank you for Jesus, who died so that I can have a relationship with you. Forgive me for not accepting your invitation to come to your throne. Help me to come in boldness to your throne. Thank you for your mercy. Help me to seek you in my times of need. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
A few weeks ago at our church’s camp, I talked about friendships. I talked about what a true friend looks like, so I wanted to share it here with you all also.
We are all familiar with friendships and have many types of friends. Right now, you can probably think about your best friend, or perhaps, you are sad because you are thinking about a friendship you had that is no longer intact. We have Facebook friends, acquaintances as well as deep friendships.
Well, it turns out, the Bible actually has alot to say about friendships too, so let’s turn to the Bible to see what it has to say about friendships.
The first example we will look at is in 1 & 2 Samuel, the story of David and Jonathon. As we will see, David and Jonathon had a deep relationship filled with love and devotion from one another. (I would encourage you to read the story of their friendship in 1 & 2 Samuel to get the whole picture of their friendship.)
1 Samuel 18:1 “As soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.”
They were of “one spirit”, so this picture shows the foundation to their relationship was firmly planted in God.
So having a Biblical relationship allows you to walk together, alongside your friend. It allows you to have someone you can go to for advice-Biblical advice. It’s someone you can have fun with, but not someone who will get you in trouble. It’s someone you can cry with because she will give you hope in God. And it is someone you will see again-in heaven, of course!
For another Biblical example of friendship, let’s look at Japhthah’s daughter and her friends.
Judges 11:37-38 “So she said to her father, “Let this thing be done for me: leave me alone two months, that I may go up and down on the mountains and weep for my virginity, I and my companions.” So he said, “Go.” Then he sent her away for two months, and she departed, she and her companions, and wept for her virgiinity on the mountains.”
Did you catch it? She wanted to go hang with her girls when life was hard. They were in the same walk of life she was in, so they talked with her because they understood what she was going through. It is not a spiritual concept to have women in the same walk of life as you, but it is always a good idea to have someone in the same stage of life as you, so you can relate to each other’s situations in order to best be able to talk to each other in the good times and the bad.
Moses, Aaron and Hur also give us a Biblical example of friendship in Exodus 17 too. (Again, read Exodus 17 to give you a better understanding of their friendship.)
Exodus 17:12-13 “But Moses’ hands grew weary, so they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it, while Aaron and Hur held up his hands, on on one side, and the other on the other side. So his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. And Joshua overwhelmed Almalek and his people wiht the sword.”
Aaron and Hur supported Moses. They held up his hands when he couldn’t do it anymore. Sometimes we just need a friend to walk alongside us and hold our hand. Not only did they help him hold up his hands, but they encouraged him to continue to do what God called him to do. How do your friendships measure in this area? Do you have friends holding your hand when you feel like you just can’t do it anymore? Are you friends encouraging you to be a trustworthy employee? Do they join you in the pity party or do they pull you up by encouraging you? What do you do for your friends?
Yet another example of Biblical friendship is portrayed in Mark 2:1-5. “And when he returned to Capernaum after some days, it was reported that he was at home. And many were gathered together, so that there was no more room, not even at the door. And he was preaching the word to them. And they came, bringing to him a paralytic, carried by four men. And when they could not get near him because of the crowd; they removed the roof above him, and when they had made an opening; they led down the bed on which the paralytic lay. And when Jesus saw their faith, he said to paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”
These men were taking action for their friend. They were serving him by doing for him something he could not do for himself. He could not walk, so they carried him and brought him closer to Jesus. Do you have friends that will help you “carry your mat” when you are not able to do so? Are you helping your friends by taking action for them when they are unable to do it for themselves? Are you serving your friends? Do you act for your friends or do your just say you will do something and then never follow through? What can you start doing today to begin taking actions in your friendships?
Jesus is also a perfect example of sharing the load with his friends. He trained up 12 disciples. He shared meals with them, He shared His ministry with them and He shared His burdens with them.
He was friendly toward everyone.
This passage shows us this perfect example: Matthew 9:10-12And as Jesus reclined at the table in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and were reclining with Jesus and his disciples. And when the Pharisees saw this, they said to his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” But when he heard it, he said, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick.”
I need to note that Jesus wasn’t best friends with everyone, but He was friendly to everyone. So this passage is telling us that we need to be friendly with our coworkers, family members, Facebook friends, the people we meet at the gym and our neighbors. You have influence on each of these people, even if they do not have influence on you. You can positively influence their lives, even if they give you nothing in return.
So who are your friends? And what makes them special to you? What is a favorite memory you have with your friend? Why? How long have you known your best friend? What is something meaningful she has done with you? How does God use her to bless your life?
Our friends can bless us, but we can bless our friends in return. So, who is your Biblical Friend Forever and how can you be a better Biblical Friend Forever?
Last year at camp, I talked about our inner beauty as opposed to outer beauty. If you would like to read about it too, check it out here!
Hey friends, are you on lovin’ Bloglovin’? I wanted to remind you not only to follow me on my social media links I mentioned on my last post, but also to follow me on Bloglovin’! I would love for you to show me some lovin’ on Follow my blog with Bloglovin page!
What other Social Media outlets do you love?
Also, don’t forget to share your thoughts or ideas on my new blog, while you Take a Look Around. I would love to hear from each of you, even if it is just to let me know you stopped by!
In case you haven’t noticed or you are new around here, the blog has a new look! Yay! Thank you all for being so patient with me, and I apologize for missing 2 Wednesday Devotionals. Take a look around and share your thoughts on how I can better improve the blog too! I do, however, ask that you continue to bear with me as I continue to make even more changes, but I could’t wait any longer to get it back up and running!
And since we have a new look, I want to ask you what else you would like to see on the blog? What new topics would you like to see? Any sort of series you are itching to read about?
Oh, and don’t forget to follow on Social Media! I wouldn’t want you to miss out there!
Well, folks, it is less than 1 week before Election Day in America, and if you are like most, you think both candidates are a stinky choice for authority!
So let’s talk today about authority. We, as Christians, have to remember that God has ordained all the authorities put in place, including our government, our president, our church leaders, our pastor, our families, our parents, our husbands, our bosses and anyone else who is the authority in our life.
“Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.”Romans 13:1-2
Boy, is this a heavy topic. I feel like our American culture has surely drifted away from respecting authority. We see it everywhere-the police, our parents, our bosses-everywhere. It is all about “me” and not many people are respecting the authority figures placed above them.
So back to the election…No matter what the outcome of this election, God is the one that put them in that place. (Remind me to reread this after the results are announced!) But seriously, we must remember that God’s plan is perfect, and He always works out every scenario in order to glorify Himself! Crazy to think that one of our Presidential candidates will be used to glorify God, right? But remember Pilate? He was placed in a position of authority, and God still received glory from his leadership. He was the one that crucified Jesus-glory to God!
So let’s put our faith in God and not in people, and remember that even through this election, God is in control!
God, thank you for the authorities you have placed in my life. Forgive me for not trusting in your sovereignty. Help me to trust in the leaders you have placed in my country, my home and all aspects of my life. Help me be faithful to pray for the authorities over me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
I recently talked with my MOPS group about the importance of children’s play, so I wanted to share it here too…
Play is such a necessary part of children’s lives because it helps them develop skills early in life, which they will continue to use throughout the remainder of their lives. Play helps children flourish cognitively, socially and even emotionally. We know that play helps children build new skills that help them intellectually; and socially we realize it helps them grasp how to play with other children, but I think we often forget about how play influences them emotionally. It helps them grow mentally, and it helps them to process their feelings through playing out scenarios in a safe environment. Play helps children learn to understand every day life by reenactment and playing out different outcomes. It can help them work through difficult situations as well. It is also a fun way for them to express themselves.
So what are the different types of play?
Active Play. When a child uses his mind and body to engage in play. He manipulates materials and plays with other children or adults.
Adventuresome Play. This type of play is when a child explores new things. She is often pretending, but may take more risks during this type of play to explore the world around her.
Communicable Play. When a child shares his knowledge during play. It can be verbal or non-verbal communication, and it can be simple knowledge or complex knowledge.
Entertaining Play. This form of play is fun and exciting, usually with lots of silliness and laughing and with a sense of humor.
Involved Play. Occurs when a child becomes very involved and focused during her playtime. She concentrates and thinks very deeply about what she is doing during this type of play.
Meaningful Play. Happens when a child replays the things he has heard or seen others say or do. It helps him to build on his knowledge of the topic he is acting out during play. It also helps him to understand situations better when he acts out what he has seen or heard in a previous situation.
Social Play. Simply when a child plays with other children or adults. It helps the child develop appropriate social skills by interacting with others.
Symbolic Play. When a child uses her imagination when playing. She tries new ideas during this type of play. She even pretends to read or write during this type of play.
Therapeutic Play. Allows a child to process the emotions he feelings about a paritcular situation.
Voluntary Play. Happens when a child chooses what she wants to play. She decides how to play, who the characters are, what is happening and where each character should go and how to get there.
Again, it is important for children to have time to play in order to develop their cognitive skills, social skills and for good mental health.
So let’s allow our children time to play, provide opportunities for them to play with others and play with them because play is so important to every aspect of their development!
Do you like competition…to outdo others? If you don’t know me very well, one thing I should mention here is that I am HIGHLY competitive. I mean, I refuse to let my husband win in a card game of speed, I fight till the end of a ping pong match and I may have slammed my tennis racquet down too many times to count losing an infinite amount of tennis matches against my husband.
Paul suggests a friendly game of “One Uping” each other in honor. However, I think we as Christians often forget this friendly competition and take is as a suggestion, rather than a declaration of what at true Christian looks like.
In Romans 12:10, Pauls says, “Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor.”
To honor someone means to pay attention to them, celebrate their successes, acknowledge and build up their confidence and give them credit for the accomplishments in their life. Praise them when they do good, recognize their hard work, build up their reputation, notice when they are trying and let them know they are dear to you.
These are ways you can tell a Christian from a non-Christian. If you are a Christian, you are called to treat others-all others-in this way. Even if you are at odds with a person, you should treat them this way. You will be astonished at the change of your mindset if you start treating those you have disliked in this way. Begin to put into action your Christian morals by noticing the good in others, telling them you are proud of them and telling others about it too.
Are you ready to accept the challenge?
God, thank you for each and every person in my life. Forgive me for being focused on negative things in others’ lives. Help me to honor others’ lives and celebrate the people you have placed in my life. Help me to build up others’ confidence instead of tearing it down. Help me to notice only the good in their lives. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Are you afraid of the dark? Do you like the dark? There is something about the darkness that is a bit unsettling. You can’t see what is in it. Maybe you can hear it, but you don’t know what it really is or where it is. The dark is sorta depressing too. You can’t see anything, so it makes it hard to do anything, so you are just sitting…in the dark. Or you get up to get something in the dark. Watch out for that…ouch! Too late!
Isn’t it funny how the world always tries to portray itself as enlightened? A world full of bright individuals, but then the world likes to say Christians are in the dark; they are boring and don’t understand the forward-thinking mindset of the world. Christians are so ignorant, says the world.
However, the Bible tells us just the opposite. The Bible tells us that the world lives in darkness because they do not know God. It’s not the Christians who don’t understand. However, they are actually the ones with the true knowledge.
Romans 13:11-12 says, “Besides this you know the time, that the hour has come for you to wake from sleep. For salvation is nearer to us now than when we first believed. The night is far gone; the day is at hand. So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light.”
Friends, the hour of darkness is coming to an end. The light (the Lord) is coming sooner now than when we first believed. The time is getting closer and closer each day. This should motivate us to get our act together and start living in the light as the Bible calls us to do instead of following the non-believers stumbling around in the dark.
Are you sleeping or are you awake in this present time? We could die right now or Christ could come back tomorrow. Are you ready? Is you light shining brightly enough that you share the Gospel at every opportunity you get? Is you light on when temptation comes knocking at your door or are you hiding it in the darkness? Our time is coming. It is getting closer every day.
So friends, put on Jesus, your armor of light.
God, thank You for bringing me into the light. Forgive me for hiding in the darkness over and over again. Shine Your light through me. Help me be a light to others and help me to live with urgency for Your kingdom. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Today, we are talking about how you dress and what that means for you and for others. Sorry gentlemen, today this post is geared more toward women, but read along and share it with your female friends too if you’d like!
Ladies, our clothing style can tell others who we are, our values and often what we believe. If a woman dresses risqué, she is typically looking for attention. If she is overly focused on her outward appearance, how others view her looks is often very important. 1 Timothy 2:9-10 tell us that we should neither dress immodestly or over-the-top in order to get attention.
Let’s take a closer look at those verses: 1 Timothy 2:9-10-“…likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modest and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire, but with what is proper for women who profess godliness-with good works.”
What this doesn’t mean: It doesn’t mean that we are not supposed to look pretty. No, I firmly believe that you can look beautiful given the description above. It also doesn’t mean we can never braid our hair. Nor does it mean that we are not allowed to wear gold or pearls.
We have to consider the context of these verses and during the time these verses were written, women were out of control with braiding their hair and buying expensive jewelry in order to look better than everyone else. Their clothing was not glorifying God, but instead becoming a distraction. In these verses, Paul was addressing the behind the scenes reasoning for purchasing such extravagant clothing and jewelry because the women were being distracted by elegant fashion instead of doing the work of the Lord.
Don’t be distracted by the words Paul is saying, but listen to the point he is making. Gals, let’s dress modestly in order to not distract ourselves or others from God’s glory. His glory is more exquisite than anything we can ever put on anyway. Let’s allow others to see who we truly are-Godly women-instead!
God, thank you for your words of conviction and grace. Allow me to be an encouragement to others. Forgive me for being a distraction both to myself and to others. Help me to see the Godliness in others and not be distracted by them either. Pour out Your love through me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
There is so much confusion today within the roles of marriage. Culture tells woman to stand up for herself, fight her own battles, live for herself, etc. To set the record straight, I am neither a feminist nor a prude. However, the Bible is clear on the role of a wife.
#1 Ladies, we have to help our husbands. I was sitting with a group of moms recently, and we were talking about all the roles we have as mothers have and all the things we have to schedule, remember and do for our children. We began to talk about how these responsibilities typically fall on the shoulders of the mommy, while the dad gets to wrestle the kids and be the “fun” parent. A friend of mine gently spoke up and reminded us our husbands have much on their shoulders as well. They are scheduling, remembering and doing important things all day at their jobs too. They are providing for our families and are stressed too.
With two toddlers, I am exhausted at the end of the day. When my spouse walks in the door, It is hard to think about what he needs because I am too busy exploding about how my day went wrong to even give him the chance to share the ups and downs of his day.
The fact of the matter is, whether our men verbalize it or not, they need our help too.
#2 Friends, we need to love him unconditionally. Yeah, maybe he is not perfect and does not do everything just like you want him to, but we have to accept him for the person he is and appreciate him to the fullest. Period.
#3 Girlfriends, we must respect our husbands. Okay, my intention was not to talking about sex in this post, but it fits here! I recently I overheard my husband joking to someone, and he said, “If our wives would respect us and have sex with us, all men would be happy!” Well, that totally makes sense!
Showing respect to our husbands means we must build up their self-worth. We value his wisdom and follow his decisions. We need to end up back on the same team after a conversation, disagreement or argument. We should be his biggest fan and loudest cheerleader! He needs us to believe in everything he does, verbalize and show our support for him in all that he does. He wants and needs our respect.
#4 Gals, we have to submit to our husband’s leadership. I know, I just rocked the boat, but for our marriages to last, our man has to be our leader. Let me be clear about what I am saying. I am not asking you to sit quietly and have no place in your marriage. I am not asking you to never share your opinion or not give input into a situation with your hubby. I am not asking you to be a doormat or be submissive to ungodly leadership. However, the Bible clearly tells us the man has the authority over decisions for our families, and we, as wives, must meet our husband with approval of the decisions they are making for our families. It is not always easy, but it is what the Bible calls us, as wives, to do.
So how about we become women who are committed to helping our spouse-loving him, respecting him and submitting to his leadership? I’m up for the challenge, are you?