For The Lord Is Good by Kenika

 

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-photos-free-happy-elated-woman-arms-out-raised-up-serene-joyful-pose-girl-green-shirt-isolated-white-background-studio-image32259093Psalm 100:5 “For the Lord is good…”

If you are a person that has been in church for any amount of time, you may have heard someone refer to God as being good.  Even if you’ve never stepped foot in a church you may have heard your grandma or some churchy person recite the line, “God is good all the time.”  When people are struggling with the notion of the existence of God and what He is like, the number one question tends to be, “If God is so good, why does he let _________ happen?”  The fill in the blank is usually some sort of injustice, poverty, crime or evil in the world.  Believers sometimes say that God is good all the time no matter what it looks like, feels like or seems like, He’s still good.  But in a world like ours and in the dispensation that we live in, people are having a hard time comprehending that something or someone can be inherently good.  We are constantly let down by others, and sometimes even our own actions leave us thinking we are no good either.

Instead of looking at my own frailties and focusing in on the failures of  others, I draw comfort in knowing that God is always good.  If I’m having a bad day, He’s still good.  If everything is going according to plan, He is good.  When everything I know to be true is falling to pieces, He is good. He never changes.  It’s the one place that I can run to.  It’s the idea that no matter what, He is a good God. He’s not just good in some ways, and not in others. In all ways, at all times, He is to the nature and core of Him, good.

We have to learn to see Him in this light and affirm Him as being this in our lives. Otherwise we will drive ourselves crazy trying to figure every little thing out.  Why did that happen, or why didn’t this happen?  These are questions that will take us away from a simple idea.  Whether it’s good times or bad times, high times or low times, whether we feel like it or not, God is always good. That is what is so great about Him and His character.  He’s dependable, reliable and constant.

This understanding leaves little room for doubt or question.  His truest goodness draws us to Him and binds us to His love forever.

 

Do Not Grow Weary by Trish

Take just a moment and pause on this phrase. If something is to grow, it has to be covered and protected in an environment that nurtures what is necessary for it to become bigger than the seed itself. What are you covering that is causing you to grow weariness in your life? What seeds are being nurtured under the surface that is feeding the feeling of doubt and hopelessness? As women we can very easily cover the seed of disappointment, hurt, rejection, etc. and from the outside everything looks good but the Bible cautions us to not grow weary. Growth is an interesting facet of life. You can’t see it all too easily with the naked eye but it’s a process where every moment contributes to its increase. What are you trusting God for that seems as though you’re constantly getting the “red light” or a flashing neon sign that screams at you, “Not now”? It can be difficult to wait for a promise to be fulfilled but just like natural growth, the spirit of weariness can grow and develop without ever “seeing” it take place. You know how it goes, ladies. You stay busy with your work, your family, and your hobbies so you don’t have to think about those unfulfilled promises and if you’re not careful you’ll entertain thoughts of doubt and discouragement and within time it produces the fruit of weariness. Have you ever been so tired and fatigued that nothing made sense? Your vision was blurry and your words lacked meaning? When our spirits our weary, our vision is affected, we speak from our situation or how we feel versus the Word and there isn’t much that makes sense to us in those moments. So then, how can we guard ourselves from growing weary?

1) Protect your thought life; what you meditate on becomes your reality.

As a man THINKETH so is he (or she). Your thought life is like a GPS, whatever information you choose to input into the program determines the direction of your journey.

2) Be mindful of your company.

Ever heard the saying, “Misery loves company”? Some people find pleasure in wallowing in self- pity and apathy tends to be the greatest form of entertainment and excitement. Be cautious of this.  To bring balance to this, be mindful of those who are only “yes” people in your life but dare not caution you of the bigger picture. It is imperative to have those in your life that can encourage you and speak the truth in love so that there is a healthy balance. My mom had a friend who was excellent at this. Whenever my mom was facing a hardship her friend, who was also my godmother, would tell her, “Cry about it…go ahead…cry! Get it out of your system”. Then when she was done she would say, “Okay, we’re done now, what do we do to fix it and move on?” I love that! If you only cry and never move to a solution, you’ll exhaust not only yourself but also everyone around you. However if you NEVER cry and confront the hurt, or disappointment, you’ll grow weary from the weight and pressure building behind the scenes.

3) Watch that mouth!

There is creative power in our words. We have the ability to produce life or death by what we say. Guard your words and if it is not edifying, it is not worth wasting breath on. Not only do we need to be mindful of what we say but also mindful of what others speak over our life! Words create “worlds”. For example, if you continue to say you’re tired, the more you say it, the more tired you become. Confession is powerful!

4) Find your strength in Him.

In His presence there is FULNESS OF JOY (Psalm 16:11) and we know that we obtain our strength through the joy He provides! (Nehemiah 8:10) Be encouraged ladies, God is faithful to His promises! Write these power verses down and feed your faith and watch doubt, defeat and weariness die! Psalm 28:7 (Amplified Bible) “The Lord is my Strength and my [impenetrable] Shield; my heart trusts in, relies on, and confidently leans on Him, and I am helped; therefore my heart greatly rejoices, and with my song will I praise Him.” Psalm 84:11 (Amplified Bible) “For the Lord God is a Sun and Shield; the Lord bestows [present] grace and favor and [future] glory (honor, splendor, and heavenly bliss)! No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” Galatians 6:9 (Amplified Bible) “And let us not lose heart and grow weary and faint in acting nobly and doing right, for in due time and at the appointed season we shall reap, if we do not loosen and relax our courage and faint.”

A Promise Well Kept by Trish

 

A few years ago I was admiring the purse of a friend of mine.  Anyone who knows me is already well aware that after Jesus and my family I love purses, perfume, jewelry, make up, shoes, etc. I’m SUCH a girl and I love it. So when I see something I like on someone else, I LOVE to celebrate it with him or her. As I was giving my speech on how fabulous this handbag was, my sweet friend says, “When I’m done with it, it’s yours”. Of course that was not my intention in giving her props about her purse, and to be honest I didn’t really think she was serious, but it was a nice “gesture” in return of the compliment I gave her.

A few months later when I saw this same friend, she says, “Wait! I have something for you.” She handed me the same purse I had admired months earlier. Although I was moved that she would actually give me this purse (did I mention that it was fabulous?!) I was more in shock (literally) that she was true to her word. Her words spoken were not empty and without a reminder from me, she honored her own word and made good on her promise.

So many times, as we spend time adoring our Father, He begins to reveal to us what His plans are for our lives and in the moment that He’s downloading this to us, our hearts are filled with gratitude. So, why then do we act surprised when He actually manifests His promises? Perhaps it’s for the same reason I was surprised when my friend was true to her word. We’re so accustomed to empty promises that when someone actually follows through, we’re not sure how to receive it. Can I remind you, it should be the norm that when anything is said or promised it should automatically be so? But let’s take it one step further, the fact is we deal with human nature- sometimes forgetful without any ill will associated, sometimes words spoken from passion and not purpose or follow through and sometimes just lies and flattery. But not so with our God, He doesn’t offer a promise as a “gesture” in exchange for your adoration. His promises are “yes and amen” meaning if He said, it MUST come to pass. In other words, if He’s declared a promise over your life, you can take it to the bank!

Our response to His Word is faith. We take His word, meditate upon it, guard it and activate our faith to see it accomplished. He spoke, “Let there be”…and so it was.

What promises are you waiting in expectation for? Re-ignite your faith to BELIEVE and watch Him bring it to pass. Don’t be shocked when it does, our Father God cannot lie, it is not in Him to lie. He is faithful and true. Instead, determine to wake up each day with the mindset that says, “I’m one day closer to seeing my promise being fulfilled!” Each time your prayers are answered acknowledge that once again, His Word is a promise well kept!

Faith Ignited Through Your Kids by Sonya

As a parent I have realized that you have to truly know who you are in Christ.  I speak from experience as I am raising three girls and one boy all under seven. I know God gives you children as a blessing and we get the privilege to raise them, but a lot of times I think they are raising me. My third daughter just asked Jesus into her heart at three years old. My other two girls were young as well when they made that decision. It blows me away how much they have taught me to follow the Lord.  As I see faith in my kid’s eyes, and through their lens, I can’t comprehend the overwhelming love they have for God.  Their faith ignites my faith and causes me to strength my character in HIM.

I have learned what it means to pray and the power of prayer as I watch my girls talk to God like He is right there, and pour their hearts out to Him during the day. My middle daughter has a prayer chain that she made and has blue chains for the boys and pink chains for the girls that we pray for as a family. We break the chains off once the prayer is answered. They lay hands on each other and pray for healing when sick.   My five year old daughter goes to a public school and is not ashamed of her faith!  She got the teacher and class gather together to pray for her brother when he spiked a fever, and prayed for a little boy at recess because he was sad.  I am sharing these things not to brag but to give you a glimpse of how God works through children.  We should not be ashamed of who our God is and we are to tell others about Him.  I get excited and on fire to see God move in our family because I know we have little prayer warriors and evangelists that are not afraid of what the world brings.

So I ask myself, where am I lacking in my faith?  What can my children show me? Our children can certainly show us our weaknesses, but do we see the good and strengthen on those weaknesses?  Are we maturing in our faith as we raise our family?  Our children are looking to us as the models but a lot of times they show us how to be the example. I want to encourage you to fuel that fire and passion in your heart to be all that God has called you to be. As a parent, I challenge you to grow and mature with each trial and allow yourself to view your faith through your child. You must have the faith of a child as Mark states, “Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I assure you, anyone who doesn’t have their kind of faith will never get into the Kingdom of God” Mark 10:14-15.