It matters…

As I wrote earlier, God wants me (and you) to think His thoughts, because they are higher, better, and they accomplish the purpose for which he thinks and speaks them. Following up on that, I am listening to, reading and hearing about the importance of what I think – because it matters.

I have heard this saying: You can’t stop the birds from flying over head, but you can stop them from nesting in your hair. It’s the same with thoughts. Just because a thought “flies over” doesn’t mean it’s something I have to take ownership of. I have the opportunity to judge each thought. I may choose to accept as truth and meditate on it, or I can reject it as a lie and refuse it.

Here are a few of the scriptures that remind and help me to embrace the power of God’s thoughts, as communicated in His Word:

For the rest, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence and is honorable and seemly, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely and lovable, whatever is kind and winsome and gracious, if there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on and weigh and take account of these things [fix your minds on them].
Philippians 4:8 AMPC

Keep your thoughts continually fixed on all that is authentic and real, honorable and admirable, beautiful and respectful, pure and holy, merciful and kind. And fasten your thoughts on every glorious work of God, praising him always.
Philippians 4:8 TPT

Yes, feast on all the treasures of the heavenly realm and fill your thoughts with heavenly realities, and not with the distractions of the natural realm.
Colossians 3:2 TPT

Embrace the power of salvation’s full deliverance, like a helmet to protect your thoughts from lies. And take the mighty razor-sharp Spirit-sword of the spoken word of God. Pray passionately in the Spirit, as you constantly intercede with every form of prayer at all times. Pray the blessings of God upon all his believers.
Ephesians 6:17‭-‬18 TPT

We can demolish every deceptive fantasy that opposes God and break through every arrogant attitude that is raised up in defiance of the true knowledge of God. We capture, like prisoners of war, every thought and insist that it bow in obedience to the Anointed One.
2 Corinthians 10:5 TPT

Think about, know and believe this today beloved: His thoughts toward us are precious, His plans for us are good, for our peace (shalom – wholeness, nothing broken, missing or lacking). Oh how He loves us!

Every single moment you are thinking of me! How precious and wonderful to consider that you cherish me constantly in your every thought! O God, your desires toward me are more than the grains of sand on every shore! When I awake each morning, you’re still with me.
Psalms 139:17‭-‬18 TPT

For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome.
Jeremiah 29:11 AMPC

Passion Translation®. Copyright © 2017, 2018 by Passion & Fire Ministries, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. ThePassionTranslation.com. Other verses are taken from The Amplified Classic (AMPC).

The Triumph of Faith

I woke up early today and heard Holy Spirit say get up and let me talk to you. I want to share it with you because Oh how He loves us! And His Word applies to all who make Jesus Savior and Lord.

When people work, they earn wages. It can’t be considered a free gift, because they earned it. But no one earns God’s righteousness. It can only be transferred when we no longer rely on our own works, but believe in the one who powerfully declares the ungodly to be righteous in his eyes. It is faith that transfers God’s righteousness into your account!
Romans 4:4‭-‬5 TPT

Knowing that God has accounted you as righteous read this Psalm in faith and make sure to personalize it. Declare this Word out loud over yourself and your generations — your family, children, grandchildren and future generations.

Shout in celebration of praise to the Lord! Everyone who loves the Lord and delights in him will cherish his words and be blessed beyond expectation. Their descendants will be prosperous and influential. Every generation of the righteous will experience his favor. Great blessing and wealth fills the house of the wise, for their integrity endures forever. Even if darkness overtakes them, sunrise-brilliance will come bursting through because they are gracious to others, so tender and true. Life is good for the one who is generous and charitable, conducting affairs with honesty and truth. Their circumstances will never shake them and others will never forget their example. They will not live in fear or dread of what may come, for their hearts are firm, ever secure in their faith. Steady and strong, they will not be afraid, but will calmly face their every foe until they all go down in defeat. Never stingy and always generous to those in need, they lived lives of influence and honor that will never be forgotten, for they were full of good deeds. But the wicked take one look at a life lived like this and they grit their teeth in anger, not understanding their bliss. The wicked slink away speechless in the darkness that falls, where hope dies and all their dreams fade away to nothing, nothing at all!
Psalms 112:1‭-‬10 TPT

Passion Translation®. Copyright © 2017, 2018 by Passion & Fire Ministries, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. ThePassionTranslation.com.

Hope

There is a story of King David in 1 Samuel 30 that has come to my mind several times lately. Things didn’t look good for him. In returning home from battle he and his men found their town burned and all of their family members had been taken captive. They all wept and his men talked of stoning him… he was greatly distressed, BUT “David encouraged and strengthened himself in the Lord.” AND, the end of the story is restoration and victory.

So, I am encouraging myself in the Lord with these scriptures – reading them, speaking them to myself, and I pray they will encourage you too. I’ll start with some words written by King David, and follow with some other precious words.

I am standing in absolute stillness, silent before the one I love, waiting as long as it takes for him to rescue me. Only God is my Savior, and he will not fail me.
Psalms 62:5 TPT

So then, my soul, why would you be depressed? Why would you sink into despair? Just keep hoping and waiting on God, your Savior. For no matter what, I will still sing with praise, for you are my saving grace!
Psalms 42:5 TPT

The eyes of the Lord are upon even the weakest worshipers who love him— those who wait in hope and expectation for the strong, steady love of God.
Psalms 33:18 TPT

Celebrate with praises the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has shown us his extravagant mercy. For his fountain of mercy has given us a new life—we are reborn to experience a living, energetic hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.
1 Peter 1:3 TPT

So cheer up! Take courage, all you who love him. Wait for him to break through for you, all who trust in him!
Psalms 31:24 TPT

We have this certain hope like a strong, unbreakable anchor holding our souls to God himself. Our anchor of hope is fastened to the mercy seat in the heavenly realm beyond the sacred threshold,
Hebrews 6:19 TPT

Now may God, the fountain of hope, fill you to overflowing with uncontainable joy and perfect peace as you trust in him. And may the power of the Holy Spirit continually surround your life with his super-abundance until you radiate with hope!
Romans 15:13 TPT

Oh, there are so many more I could share, I encourage you to pick up your Bible. Start reading the Psalms, spend some time in John 13-17, Hebrews 6-11, Romans 5-8. Be encouraged, He is for you, He loves you!

Passion Translation®. Copyright © 2017, 2018 by Passion & Fire Ministries, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. ThePassionTranslation.com.

And Yet He Loves Me

I have been meditating on Psalm 139 and I find it is almost beyond comprehension just how very much God loves me.

Lord, you know everything there is to know about me. You perceive every movement of my heart and soul, and you understand my every thought before it even enters my mind.
Psalms 139:1‭-‬2 TPT

https://bible.com/bible/1849/psa.139.1-2.TPT

He knows me intimately, He knows all the times I have messed up, failed, been unloving, unkind, unfaithful… And yet even knowing everything about me He still chose to love (and still loves) me.

This song says it so well: “When He Was On The Cross I Was On His Mind” I can never forget — He Knew Me Yet He Loved Me.

For here is the way God loved the world—he gave his only, unique Son as a gift. So now everyone who believes in him will never perish but experience everlasting life.
John 3:16 TPT
https://bible.com/bible/1849/jhn.3.16.TPT

I hope you know that He feels the same way about you. You are so very loved by God. It’s about how great He is, not how worthy we are. It’s the precious blood of Jesus that redeems, forgives and gives us the great honor to become His children. Oh how He loves us!

I’m Still Standing

I’ve missed writing and sharing with you. It’s been an extremely busy and somewhat challenging season for me. Working from home and care giving full-time hasn’t left me with much spare time, but again I’ve missed writing to you.

Anyway, I was considering what to write today and this song came to mind immediately. I hope you’ll be as encouraged by it as I am. By the grace of God…

I’m Still Standing

I am standing in absolute stillness, silent before the one I love, waiting as long as it takes for him to rescue me. Only God is my Savior, and he will not fail me.
Psalms 62:5 TPT
https://bible.com/bible/1849/psa.62.5.TPT

The “why” of a Grateful, Grace-full life

This is a photo I took while in Capernum in 2019. I chose it because it’s not perfect – those upside down containers don’t belong, right?
Kind of like our lives, even when the picture isn’t perfect — we can still lift our hands and be thankful for He is Good, and His faithful love endures!

It’s Thanksgiving today, and it has been anything but traditional at our home. Due to my husband’s currently compromised immune system we are not having or participating in a family gathering. As this day approached I made a conscious decison to be thankful and grateful, and I am so glad. The quiet has been good, and I even found time to sleep in, bake bread, and just reflect on the goodness of God — to count my many, many blessings. 

While thinking on this I feel I heard the Holy Spirit whisper that being grateful opens the door to a grace-filled life. It’s a matter of the heart and it’s the “why” that He is teaching me. I see that being grateful/thankful is like having my arms lifted, wide open to the Father. Looking to him and thanking Him for not only what He has already done, but trusting Him with the future. It’s like a magnet, pulling all the good things that He has toward me. He is love, He wants to supply all that we need, and He delights in doing it!

In contrast, being angry and ungrateful is like standing with closed, clenched fists, head down, fearful, unable to percieve or recieve all that God had provided and wants to provide. (Oh, how that must grieve His heart.)

As an example: I was deeply touched to learn of the unexpected home going of the husband of a precious woman I know — have known for years as a woman of faith and a lover of God. Her response today on social media was to write about thankfulness. As she so amazingly and aptly put, “In the midst of intense sorrow and loss the only posture that is fitting and necessary is thankfulness.” She then wrote a wonderful list of the many things for which she is thankful.

What she wrote served as an important reminder to me that no matter how difficult a moment in time or circumstance may be, I have the opportunity to be thankful for things both large and small — I am so very blessed!

I am so very grateful that He has given me the choice! When the enemy comes at me with fear, to make me angry or tries to get me to have a pity party over things that have happened, I will choose to believe in and thank God for His mercies and unfailing love. I will rehearse His goodness in prayers of thanksgiving and worship Him. King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Love incarnate, my savior and redeemer. And in doing so I will open up my heart and receive His great, great grace. Oh how HE LOVES you and me!

Complete Prayer

From my pastor this morning: “Prayer is not complete without gratitude… Thankfulness is an exercise in Faith.” – Pastor George Pearson, Eagle Mountain International Church

Don’t be pulled in different directions or worried about a thing. Be saturated in prayer throughout each day, offering your faith-filled requests before God with overflowing gratitude. Tell him every detail of your life, Philippians 4:6 TPT https://bible.com/bible/1849/php.4.6.TPT

We read in the story of Daniel and how he faced the lion’s den – not desperate or fearful. He was faithfilled and grateful. His prayers and thankfulness led to his deliverance . (Daniel 6)

Now when Daniel knew that the writing was signed, he went into his house, and his windows being open in his chamber toward Jerusalem, he got down upon his knees three times a day and prayed and gave thanks before his God, as he had done previously.
Daniel 6:10 AMPC
https://bible.com/bible/8/dan.6.10.AMPC

Hope in the Lord, Pray for Leaders

I am grateful for good spiritual leaders, the ones I can look up to and want to emulate. Yet I remind myself that they are human and therefore not perfect — and that my hope must always be in the Lord.

Passion Translation®. Copyright © 2017, 2018 by Passion & Fire Ministries, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. ThePassionTranslation.com.

I am also reminded that all those in positions of leadership need our prayers. If you are reading this will you please join me in praying for our leaders?

  • First – that they come to know Jesus Christ as their Savior and Lord.
  • Next – that their ears, hearts and minds are open to hear and receive godly wisdom. And they willingly act upon it in every important decision. That they are protected from and refuse to take part in any evil plan.

Thank you! Oh how He loves them, and you, and me!

Higher than the highest Heavens

Thinking on this today:

Higher than the highest heavens— that’s how high your tender mercy extends! Greater than the grandeur of heaven above is the greatness of your loyal love, towering over all who fear you and bow down before you! Farther than from a sunrise to a sunset— that’s how far you’ve removed our guilt from us. But Lord, your endless love stretches from one eternity to the other, unbroken and unrelenting toward those who fear you and those who bow facedown in awe before you. Your faithfulness to keep every gracious promise you’ve made passes from parents, to children, to grandchildren, and beyond. You are faithful to all those who follow your ways and keep your word.

Psalms 103:11‭-‬12‭, ‬17‭-‬18 TPT https://bible.com/bible/1849/psa.103.11-18.TPT

Staying focused

I have been reading and thinking a lot lately. There is a lot going on in our world and in my personal life. I have been feeling more emotional and find myself needing to be more diligent to remain focused, in faith and resting in Him.

I’ve been reading and meditating on Ephesians 6 (in The Passion translation) about warfare and the armor God has given us the right to use. I am sharing the lead in verses below, but I recommend reading to the end of the chapter. I hope you will find strength in it as I have. I needed the reminder of whose I am and the weapons He has provided.

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. Put on God’s complete set of armor provided for us, so that you will be protected as you fight against the evil strategies of the accuser! Your hand-to-hand combat is not with human beings, but with the highest principalities and authorities operating in rebellion under the heavenly realms. For they are a powerful class of demon-gods and evil spirits that hold this dark world in bondage.
Ephesians 6:10‭-‬12 TPT
https://bible.com/bible/1849/eph.6.10-12.TPT

We must gird ourselves with the belt of truth, put on the helmet of salvation, pick up the shield of faith, arm ourselves with the Sword of The Spirit (the Word of God), walk out the gospel of peace, and pray passionately.

WE ARE SOLDIERS OF THE LORD!