Because I too try to lessen my value to a dollar figure, instead of accepting the gift of eternal value I have by being His Beloved.
And I don’t walk out my true value most days, because I am too busy playing into the enemy’s scheme to keep me focused on what I lack instead of what I have in Him.
I am wanted.
I am chosen.
I am signed, sealed, & delivered into freedom.
I am paid for in full.
I am Beloved.
I am the apple of His eye.
I am His delight.
I am His Bride.
I need to remind myself of my true value too, more often than I can to admit.
I too need to ask God to love up on me, to so overpower me with His love that the hell is literally shoved out when it encounters His love.
And let’s face it, hate doesn’t like to leave anywhere it has burrowed into, does it?
Yes, I said hate. Because hell is really about those who hate His creation, and the Creator.
Hell? It’s filled with fallen angels, serving their false god. And one day it will be filled with souls that failed to bend the knee before God. Who refused to accept the only thing that could keep them from their final destination, apart from Him.
Love can make all the difference.
And it starts with accepting that we are valuable enough to be loved.
Especially by our Maker, who rules over Heaven & earth, and holds the keys to set everyone free from the road to hell if they accept Him.
I am not the same mess within as I was when God first met me. I thank Holy Spirit for leading me as I take each thought captive before Him, before I accept what it says.
I am no longer on the highway to hell.
His love has literally scared hell’s grip on me and cast it out forever.
I am on the pathway to meet God face to face, and live in the comfort of His embrace for all eternity.
On the days when I am bloated, sick or discouraged, I need this reminder:
His love has changed me forever. I have a purpose, plan and a future in His hands.
Beloved, may you too allow Him to soak you in the waves of His love, until all you see is His face beaming at you!
When you have steeped enough in His love, you will be able to accept it as your true value and walk in the confidence of bring His Beloved.
Hope is not an ethereal fantasy concocted by the artsy fartsy philosophical, but found in a Living, Breathing Person.
My Hope lives amongst us, within us, wherever we go, whatever we encounter.
My Hope may seem to be quiet, but His voice will be heard when we learn to discern it despite the noise.
My Hope may appear to be invisible, but He can be sensed when we learn to look with heaven’s sight despite our surroundings.
The best way to ensure you know where your Hope is at all times, as David learned all those years ago?
Keep looking to see Him.
Keep listening to hear Him.
Keep believing in faith He is with you.
Keep your hope alive by putting your trust in your forever Hope.
His Name is Jesus!
PS. If you need a pickmeup to help lift your spirit today, check out Danny Gokey‘s honest song “Hope in Front of Me.” It is one of my go-to songs to sing & proclaim back to my Hope on the days where I don’t see Him as clearly.
We don’t need
we need more
One of my loved ones is seeking all the knowledge they possibly can for a problem which is not easily resolving.
Their belief that more knowledge will solve the problem demonstrates they are missing one small piece of wisdom in all the seeking going on…
They are not seeking the Source of all wisdom & knowledge in all their searching.
intelligence gathering serves
no eternal purpose.
They are just facts, like a canoe without a rudder. Just there, but not headed anywhere in particular.
Because we are really battling on the spiritual battlefront, not just a physical or mental or emotional one.
And without His Presence,
we will not find the answer we are seeking to win that battle.
I am not saying if you have a medical condition to not seek help. I am suggesting we tend to go to God last, instead of first.
The One who made us should have some idea about how to help us, shouldn’t He?
The One who is all wisdom might have an inkling, yes?
He knows all, and since He does, He knows what we need in the moment, and how to help us get to where He has planned for us to go.
All the fact gathering we can use our time on means little compared to spending time with the One who can reveal in a moment what we can spend years seeking for in vain.
He promises to give wisdom to all who ask Him for it. And reveal purpose to us as we do.
Our answer may not come in our search for knowledge itself, but the Answer He whispers as we draw close to Him in our search.
Discernment and direction are the keys to taking knowledge from your head and putting into practice where it is needed most.
If you, like my loved one, are seeking answers, please consider Him first.
There is a peace that comes with knowing the One who knows you best, loves you the most and has only good plans in store for you- no matter what is going on in your life.
You may not get the answer you were looking for, but He will answer you,
love up on you,
as you walk together through the step ahead.
There is a freedom which comes with releasing ourselves from the belief that everything centers around us.
When we give Him first place, things fall into alignment with His truth, and we are able to see what we may not have been able to before, because He opens our eyes & ears to see and hear Him when we seek Him.
Not only does He give us wisdom, discernment and an answer, He is there with us.
Because facts are just that, facts. Pieces of information.
Presence breathes life into us.
He brings the truth to life,
breathes new hope in us when we night have to wait,
comforts us when the answer is not what we expected,
delivers us from what may be holding us back,
illuminates the way to go,
battles for us in the heavenlies,
and sticks with us
closer than crazy glue
through it all.
Its time to seek Him first.
And hear the fullness of His plans for you first hand.
That will move knowledge beyond facts into living truth.
Life is always better when we know we are loved and not alone.
The truth is: He is always waiting for us to come to Him, to seek Him, to ask our questions, to pour out our prayers. He is longing to pour out His love and answer us in response.
The fact is: He is waiting for you and I to come. Its our choice whether we fact gather or Presence seek first.
Seek Him first and all you need will be given to you as well.
I have a prayer for you this Valentine’s day, actually for you every day.
It is a prayer Someone else is praying for you too:
YOU are the one He adores.
It has taken me years to grasp this truth, and years more to let it soak in to my soul and become a part of me.
But don’t take my word for it. Take His words for it.
I am sharing just a few of my favourite bible verses with you today, and a few jots & thoughts, to paint you a colour by number outline of His love for you.
HE LOVED YOU TO DEATH:
But God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life. John 3:16
Behold, I have engraved you on the palms of My hands. Isaiah 49:16
God not only loved you first, He demonstrated this love by giving Himself up for us, so we could draw near and receive His love.
HE IS LOVE:
The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. Psalm 103:8
So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. 1 John 4:16
Because you are precious in my eyes, and honored, and I love you, I redeem you. Isaiah 43:4
Love is part of His very character, and He cannot be Himself without it. At the core of who God is, love is. You can’t have one without the other, for God IS love.
YOU WERE MADE OUT OF HIS LOVE:
Oh yes, You shaped me first inside, then out; You formed me in my mother’s womb. I thank You, High God—You’re breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration—what a creation! You know me inside and out, You know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, You watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before You, The days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day! Psalm 139:13-16
God doesn’t make junk, you may have heard.
You were made out of love, especially designed, so He could love you and be loved by you. There is only one of you, ever.
Only you can be loved by God in the ways you need to be loved, and only you can love God in the ways He made for you to express love back to Him.
His love moved Him to make you.
HIS LOVE ENDURES FOREVER:
I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you. Jeremiah 31:3
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:35-39
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23
There is nothing you can do that will change His love for you. Sure, we could disappoint Him with less than stellar behavior, but His love for you, and for me, is rock solid. God doesn’t leave when the going gets tough, His love draws closer to us to be with us through whatever comes our way. He will love us always, now and into forever, no matter what. Wow!
HIS LOVE WANTS THE BEST FOR YOU:
So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Ephesians 3:17-19
We know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28
He will wipe away every tear from your eyes. Revelation 21:4
God has the best in store for us. What parent or lover really wants to give less than their best to their loved one? God tells us He has plans for our best yet to come, and He comforts us and loves up on us along the way!
HIS LOVE IS WITH US:
The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you by His love; He will exult over you with loud singing. Zephaniah 3:17
Song of Songs Chapters 1&2
Not only does these verses, two of my all time faves, remind us God loves us, but they reveals He is with us, rescuing us when we need it, calming with His love, and singing triumphantly over us, a proud daddy & thrilled lover all rolled into one. He is wooing us to Him as a longing lover waiting for His bride to come to Him!
So, what are you to DO about it?!
Here are my A-G tips on what to DO with His love:
1. Accept it. If you can, then you can begin to:
2. Believe He loves you. Truth stands the test of time. God is who He says He is.
3. Care for yourself. If you know & feel loved, you take better care of yourself, as you want to be at your best. God wants us to love ourselves well, and show our respect for His creation, us!
4. Don’t delay. Now is the time to get to know this God of love. We don’t always get another chance when we put things off. If you want to be loved beyond your imagination, God is waiting to be found.
5. Express your love and gratitude back to Him. Knowing we are loved is only half the love story. Responding to the one who loves us in return completes the love.
6. Forgive those who you have loved who have hurt you. Love can be roadblocked by walls around out heart when we have been hurt. Don’t cut off the love you need by refusing to let His love flow. When we forgive, we make room for God to expand His love within us.
7. Go spend time with Him.
Go for a walk together, chat over coffee, read His word, sing songs of praise and adoration, listen to Him. Hanging out with Him will only increase your knowledge of His love for you, and your desire to love Him in return!
Hey, thanks for reading my 514th blog post….very fitting on Feb 14th 🙂
Someone who measures such things determined that an individual snowflake weighs 0.02* grams. At that weight it would take 50 flakes to make a gram. For comparison, a Hershey’s kiss weighs 4.7 grams – equal to about 235 snowflakes. There are about 95 kisses in a pound. Using the kiss-to-snow crystal calculator that comes to 22,325 snowflakes/pound.
*this would be the heaviest end of the spectrum. Most are much lighter, weighing from 0.001 to 0.003 grams.
In reality, it’s hard to measure the weight of a snowflake. For one thing, each snowfall is different. Some snow is light and fluffy, and some is heavy and wet. That’s due to the water content in the snow, which is related to the temperature high in the clouds where the flakes began forming, and the temperature of the air they fall through.
An individual snowflake doesn’t weigh much in the big scheme of things. Yet God designed each one uniquely, placing great care in its creation.
And despite its miniscule weight, it still manages to fall to earth, again as part of God’s plan.
Why am I bringing up snowflakes during winter?
Because of last night.
Last night, while worshipping, I “saw” how snow & the weight of His glory relate in how they both fall.
Each snowflake is designed for a purpose, and only fulfills that purpose when it falls with the rest of the snowflakes in the same snowfall or storm.
On its own, it isn’t particularly heavy, but when you add up the weight it forms when it piles up, it can be quite significant.
Each snowflake’s composition is perfect for the design of its fall, the exact amount of water contained within to be the perfect part of the team alongside the other snowflakes….all unique yet made to fall together.
There are two ways snow is a great example of the weight of His glory.
We are all like those snowflakes. And He will perfectly fill us with the right amount of water (living water, His Presence) so we are filled for the purpose we are to live out that day….so we can share it with those around us.
His glory? Its weight falls like the snowflake. Perfectly attuned and made for its recipient. And when a group gathers seeking His Presence, the weight of His glory gets heavier, as He falls on everyone in the room. Some can sense it landing heavily, others sense a light touch. He uniquely meets each of us with the exact right weight, more than enough for us in that exact moment, but never exactly like someone else’s.
Just like each snowflake, God’s Presence falls on each of us how He knows it will best soak in & water us.
When the weight of His glory falls heavily, as a heavy snowstorm can cause traffic to come to a standstill, so does time seem to come to a standstill. The air gets thick, charged with power and spiritual electricity as He enters the room in His majesty.
The weight of His glory
falls snowflake by snowflake
until the full weight
of His tangible Presence
in a fantastic
Unlike how we have no control over the snowfall, we can ask God to come to us.
His word promises He will come when we seek Him:
Timing is the Father’s business. What you’ll get is the Holy Spirit.
-Jesus, Acts 1:8
He will come when we seek Him. Exactly how & the when is up to Him. Who He falls on with the weight of His glory? That depends on us:
Read the Word. The God you find described there is real, and wants a real relationship with you.
Take some time to seek Him every day. Even a five minute break can be used by Him to refresh you. An extended period of time where you just seek and wait for Him? Even better. Even in the midst of being about His business on a short timetable, Jesus still made the time to spend with His Father:
As often as possible Jesus withdrew to out-of-the-way places for prayer.
Luke 5:16 MSG
Worship Him for who He is. He loves to be praised, and promises to live where He is honored & lifted high:
Yet you are holy,enthroned on the praises of Israel, Your people.
Psalm 22:3 ESV
Thank Him for what He has done. For making you His. For caring for you. For the blessings He has already poured out on you and the ones He promises are to come:
I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.
Jeremiah 29:11 MSG
Believe He will come:
Because you’re not yet taking God seriously,” said Jesus. “The simple truth is that if you had a mere kernel of faith, a mustard or poppy seed, say, you would tell this mountain, ‘Move!’ and it would move. There is nothing you wouldn’t be able to tackle.
Matthew 17:20 MSG
Just like the snow, which continues to fall, so will the weight of His glory when we keep seeking Him.
It may feel like a snowflake landing on your nose. It may be like a tingle or charge of static electricity. It may feel like a heaviness on your shoulders. It may feel like a heat wave, a fresh burst of wind, bubbling up joy or a peace unlike any you have ever known.
He will come. Just as sure as winter will always come again!
(PS. Here is a great song to hear to help set the atmosphere to seek Him: Weight of Glory)
God looks at us, and sees what we may not be able to see in ourselves:
*His hands & feet
*our covering in Christ
He doesn’t see:
*when we strayed
once we have given them over to Him.
He sees our messy chaotic lives, and sees beauty in our midst…because of Jesus.
Inviting Jesus in starts an internal reno that Holy Spirit will not complete until we meet God face to face in glory.
It means God sees the hope living within us, rather than our failure.
It means we have that living hope no matter what.
Broken in spirit, body, mind, heart?
Bound by sin?
Believing in enemy lies?
God doesn’t leave us there.
He restores our hope,
returns our dreams,
remolds our breaks,
redirects us to the right path.
He offers an embrace of grace when we think we deserve a slap in the face.
Take a walk through your bible.
Take a close look at the God you see enclosed in the truth contained within.
God doesn’t leave those who seek His Presence where He found them:
Abram > Abraham
Jacob> thief to head of Israel
Saul> Paul, killer of Christians to evangelist for Christ
David> shepherd to king, murderer & adulterer>man after God’s own heart
Solomon> overindulging philanthropist to wisest man & builder of His temple
Esther> pretty teenager to redeemer of her people
Rahab> prostitute to one of God’s chosen
Ruth> foreigner to beloved grandmother of David
Samson> playboy to judge, betrayer who God restored to mete out justice
This is just the tip of the iceberg of what God can do with a willing heart that beats for Him.
What we may see may be overwhelming pain, brokenness, mess beyond our ability to fix or clean…
Nothing is beyond His ability to repair.
God has never stopped being in the creation business.
When we look to Him, and choose to follow, He begins to restore us back to how He originally intended us to be: fully His.
His view of what is really going on is from His loving, eternal, all-knowing perspective.
We need to trust He knows what He is doing.
If we are listening, He will speak love, restoration and hope into our lives along the way.
Our situations do not limit His ability, they reflect humanity’s inability.
God chose to make us in His image, and will never stop restoring us until we are called home with Him.
And along the way, He makes beautiful things out of the dust, out of us.
Our hope is built on nothing less than the God of the universe.
Our beauty is not based on what we see, but His vision.
Our brokenness becomes something beautiful when we allow the Potter to remold us & give us His peace.
On the days when brokenness feels overwhelming, try to keep this truth in mind: When God looks at us, He sees something beautiful! Ask Him to give you clear direction and peace when you cannot see the beauty He sees.
Hey, if you want a few good tips on how to spot beauty in the broken on a hard day, especially a Monday, please visit:Beauty in Brokenness at POTSC.
Did you know that not getting enough rest is bad for you beyond how it affects your body?
There are three key reasons why rest is one of the components to our overall well-being, besides the benefits physically.
1. Rest denies the enemy from affecting our soul.
It appears that rest is one of our main defenses against the enemy.
Resting in God allows Him to be our defender, as outlined in: Psalm 91
While we rest in Him, He battles for us, and will win:
God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.
Romans 16:20 NIV/ESV
Our souls are protected when we rest in God.
2. Rest restricts the emotional attack against us.
When we keep ourselves from becoming anxious, and give things over to God when we are upset or concerned, we align our hearts up with the rest we have in our soul & body.
Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.
Maintaining our emotional rest not only shields us from the enemy’s attempts to send fiery darts to harm us, it allows us to walk in the rhythms of His grace. Our faith & trust in Him becomes our shield.
3. Rest restrains the mind from speculation.
When we keep our focus on God, and through His Word, worship & time in His Presence, we get to closely know the God we love, we are building a solid foundation of fact in our minds. Knowing His lavish love for us and memorizing His Word are how our mind can find rest through the storms and from the distracted thoughts the enemy likes to subtly shoot our way… “God couldn’t forgive you for that!” “nobody will love you when they hear what you did” etc.
Knowing His Word & resting in the truth contained there is protection for our minds, the helmet of salvation.
God our Warrior battles for us.
Placing our faith & trust in Him helps shield our emotions.
Spending time with Him, our Truth, protects our minds from attack.
Resting in Him, when added to taking care of our bodies by getting enough physical rest, is our strongest defense against the enemy’s schemes.
But more than that, as we get to know God more & more, and draw closer to Him no matter the season we are in, He offers rest that encompasses our whole being as we seek Him every step of every day.
We were never designed to find rest on our own, but through God, who is both the rest we seek & holding out the rest we need for every part of us in His loving hands.
I am not missing out on that offer of all encompassing rest!
*All quotes in black bold font are from: Graham Cooke, The Practice of Rest