Encouragement for when you are in the fire

Daniel 3 has always been a favorite yet unusual chapter in the Bible to me.

But it took VeggieTales to make the truth of the story it contains come to life in a fresh way. And I have always associated it with the Easter story (thanks to “the bunny, the bunny, oh I love the bunny”) even though it is historically documented in the Old Testament.

Rack, Shaq & Benny (Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the Bible) refuse to bow down to a golden idol that King Nebuchadnezzar had made of himself, as the trio will only worship the One God, the God of Israel.

And even when King N threatens to throw them into the fire if they refused, they hold fast, replying:

“Your threat means nothing to us. If you throw us in the fire, the God we serve can rescue us from your roaring furnace and anything else you might cook up, O king. But even if He doesn’t, it wouldn’t make a bit of difference, O king. We still wouldn’t serve your gods or worship the gold statue you set up.” (Daniel 3:16-18 MSG)

They so infuriate King N he has them thrown into an extra hot furnace (which cost him the guards who put Rack, Shaq & Benny in the fire.)

And the unexpected happened. Not only were they seen with their bindings removed, walking around unharmed, THERE WAS ANOTHER IN THE FIRE walking with them, looking like a “son of the gods” to King N.

The sight of this caused King N to call Rack, Shaq & Benny out of the fire (not one hair or clothing item smelled like fire!) and to pronounce the trio servants of the Most High God. But King N didn’t stop there. he released an edict that no one was to speak ill of this God upon fear of painful death. And promoted the trio in Babylon government.

Sometimes, we don’t see the big picture of what will happen when we put our trust in God, and obey. Even in Gethsemane, Jesus prayed for the Father to take the cup of crucifixion away, but not his (human) will, but God’s will be done.

There are situations all of us encounter where we have the opportunity to invite God to walk closely beside us as we walk through them. And if I am honest, I would often prefer them to be taken from me versus living them out.

Even if He doesn’t, I will still praise Him.

I have a peace about my upcoming major surgery which could only come from Him. My previous one was THE most physical pain I have ever experienced, yet God held me moment by moment that long night through the error of no pain medication initially being administered once my anesthesia wore off.  His presence with me took the edge of my pain off to help me hold it together until the doctor saw me first thing the next morning and immediately fixed the error.

Yet I have no fear, because I know He is near. And if it were to happen again, He would be right there again to hold me through it.

People have asked me if I believe God could heal me so i don’t need this surgery. And I wholeheartedly believe He can, for I know He is willing. Should it not happen before my surgery date, I will still praise Him.

For my faith is not based on His giving me what I think I need for my best, but accepting that He has plans for my good, for my best future, and that He will be my living Hope along the way, come what may.

#anotherinthefire #faithinaction #sharingHope

WELCOMING Hope

Another way that I put my faith into action every day is by WELCOMING Hope.

*Spring always follows winter.
*There is growth ahead arriving out of the deeply planted seed.
*Good is coming soon, even if you can’t see or feel it yet.


Hope doesn’t ignore the hard season about us, but rather looks to what is knows to be true.


*His Word.
*His promises.
*His faithfulness to me despite my doubt, hurt or wandering.

Look up at Him, your living Hope, above your situation or circumstances. Welcome Him into whatever you are facing, and ask Him to cause the hope you have to take deeper root and begin to bloom.

My hope has a Name, Jesus.

#sharingHope

Moving in faith with WONDER

🌿With WONDER is one of the ways I deliberately choose to move in faith through my days.

🐦Noticing the bird calls just before dawn.
🌄🌇Pausing to appreciate both the sunrise & sunset.
🗻Taking in the beauty of the flowers, trees, the water, the mountains, the rain & even fresh snowfall.
🌿💜Enjoying the smells of lavender, vanilla, fresh baking, my candles at night.
☕Savoring my morning coffee.
😁Watching people help, support & pray for each other. Especially when a smile breaks through the tears.
📖Highlighting & making notes as I spot something new or afresh in the Word.

🙌WONDERing at how intricate and marvelously this world, the Word and we are all purposefully made!

➡️What drops your jaw in wonder or sets your heart a fluttering with wonder?

Friday thought

How our prayers would change when we are in the midst of a battle if we took the following quote to 💚!! 🙏

🌿”God has a plan for our ⚔️deliverance before our problems ever appear. He is not surprised when trouble comes. He is not in Heaven wringing His hands trying to figure out what to do. He’s in control. Our past is to focus on Him and His mighty power, worshipping and praising Him for the manifestation of His solution & listening for a word of direction from Him.”

Joyce Meyer

#battleready #sharingHope

7 Battle Gear Bible Passages for your Weapons Arsenal

🌿”Now my beloved ones, I have saved these most important truths for last: Be supernaturally infused with strength through your life-union with the Lord Jesus. Stand victorious with the force of His explosive power flowing in and through you.” (Ephesians 6:10 TPT)

❔How do we become supernaturally infused with strength?

💪By spending time in His Word, worship, prayer & His Presence.

❔How to do we stand victorious?

🙌When we call upon our Victor to move on our behalf, as His beloved, and we follow His moves.

⚔️Here are 7 BATTLE GEAR BIBLE VERSES to add to your weapon arsenal:

🗡️Exodus 14:14
🛡️Deuteronomy 20:4
🪖2 Chronicles 20:15-17
📖Psalm 121:1-8
🗡️Proverbs 21:31
🛡️Ephesians 6:10-20
🪖2 Corinthians 10:3-5

🎯What version you read & commit these verses to memory doesn’t matter, friend. I find that longer passages are easier for me to memorize when they sound like I would speak (so a more modern translation) but with shorter ones I like the most majestic & powerful wording. Visit @biblegateway to print & post these verses for easy access, or stick to your favorite Bible & add some colorful bookmarks. Or download a free simple one page printable here:

⚔️The most important thing about these verses? The truth they contain about battling with God at our side, as His power flows through us. That is the kind of life-union I want to make a priority in my life! And adding these verses to our weapon arsenal can help when we find ourselves in the next enemy skirmish.

#sharingHope #battleready

Match, set, point in the battle

⚔️BATTLE. In Jewish, this word is usually the noun KRAV, which is pronouced ‘kayRAVh.’ Meaning: fight, combat, conflict, match or encounter. It’s also used to refer to a round of a sports match, such as boxing, judo, etc.

🗡️When I talk about winning a battle, it is with this word in mind. That I am, with God’s direction & help, defeating the enemy in an individual match or encounter.

For THE battle? That one belongs to the Lord, and it is His to fight.⚔️

🎉Match, set, point to me with His help in this recent round over the enemy, as I shared yesterday. Shame has lost its grip on me! I have invited God to move into the space formerly occupied by shame, & redecorate it as He sees fit. 💜

▶️STAND IN YOUR LOVE by @joshbaldwin is now loudly playing instead of the enemy’s shame soundtrack. 🙌

More 📖Words & 🎧worship songs to add to your battle gear coming this week!

#sharingHope

Oh happy day!

Not only has 🌿spring🌸 returned, but I had a breakthrough this weekend in an issue I have been grappling with for years.

I have carried the self labelled name of “shame’ for way too long, and in a quiet moment, God showed me this was the case. I was never meant to carry the weight of what others have done to me. (This isn’t to be confused with guilt, which is what happens when I do something I know is wrong.)
Their sin may have involved me as an unwilling participant, but the lie of shame which accompanied it isn’t my burden to bear any longer.

Oh happy day, indeed! 🎉🙌

Sharing more about how I battle with His help this week, coz I know this type of battle isn’t exclusive to my story alone.

#sharingHope

fresh insight – pearl of great value

As a creative, I find that I need visual reminders of the Word to help reassure me of who I am. I used to think of the verses below only from the perspective of a human merchant. And then I realized that all the world’s jewels were created by God, and I am like the pearl in these verses.

Jesus gave up all He had – His very life – for me, a very precious, rare and exquisite pearl of great value! ☺️

🌿“Heaven’s kingdom realm is also like a jewel merchant in search of rare pearls. When he discovered one very precious and exquisite pearl, he immediately gave up all he had in exchange for it.” (Matthew 13:45-46 TPT)

This necklace visually reminds me that His kingdom is worth pursuing, just as He thought I was worth pursuing!

#sharingHope #pearlsofwisdom

when God gives you an image to help you battle the enemy

Part of my usual mental battle is holding tight to the belief that God is not only for me, but has good things in store for me.

This verse has actually made more sense when I took a look around a recent trip to a warehouse store I shop at each month.

God has aisles of goodness stored up just waiting to give to us here on earth in His timing. Blessings towards living, not just when we get to heaven. Infinite resources, released with one word from the One who loves each of us so.

This visual reminder is now a go to in my weaponry as I battle. Thankful for that image, but more importantly the truth that He showed me.

🌿God is always for me.
🌿Present with me.
🌿Above, beside, before & behind me.
🌿Loving me.
🌿Forgiving me.
🌿Restoring me.
🌿Strengthening me.
🌿Equipping me.
🌿With good plans for my life.

Especially on the days when my mind is taking a bit more flack than usual.

Take that, enemy. 💣Gobsmacking you with His Word.

And then the peace which passes beyond comprehension begins to flow into my mind again.

Thank You, God!

#sharingHope

PS. Amazing custom graphic of my 2022 verse made for me by @lindsaywondrousthings

🌿😁👏

Gearing up for battle His way

This week, I am reminding myself to let God fight my battles for me. He has a remarkable track record, and has proved Himself strong & mighty over & over in my life.

As I draw near to preparing our taxes & a bit of extra work as Easter and my surgery date approach, I have come to realize that the biggest battle I face occurs behind my eyes & between my ears – in my mind.

Maybe you can relate.

So will be sharing a few of my fave worship songs & bible verses related to heading into battle over these next few days, as part of my prep!

#readyforbattleHisway