Be Prepared

Praying this morning,  my heart is overwhelmed by Matthew 25 and rhe parable of the 10 virgins

5 wise, 5 foolish

They all had lamps but the wise brought an extra container of  oil as they expected to be there awhile

They all fell asleep

When he was arriving, they all awoke and cut their wicks of the candles, but the wise had extra oil to add to their lamp and the foolish, out of lack of preparation, did not have enough

The bridegroom took the 5 wise and shut the door to the banquet. The foolish were left outside after they returned.  They banged on the door to be allowed inside but the bridegroom said, I don’t know you.

Therefore we are to keep watch…we don’t know the day or the hour.

All virgins were prepared and k ee to bring the lamp, trim the wick, fill with oil, have themselves prepared to meet their betrothed. But…only half thought to take the extra oil. They were wise, thinking and preparing ahead, not just living for today but preparing for the possibilities to come. Oil had a cost. They had to recognize money could be spent on other things, but they used it to spend on the oil. They made sure when the bridegroom came, they were not running around trying to get themselves prepared…they were ready to meet him

Makes me think..am I ready? Am I using my gifts, finances, and talents to serve Christ?

Am I devoted to waiting for him?

Am I wise?

Or am I foolish, running around everywhere, not preparing myself for his coming?

May the Lord change us today; allowing us to remember, He is coming soon. May we be careful in all we do, continually preparing ourselves through godly behavior, Christlike actions, spiritual maturity, and a continual desire for wisdom, that on the day of His arrival, we will be ready.

Breathe in Hope

Let all that I am wait quietly before God, for my hope is in him.
Psalms 62:5 NLT

Just stop…

Breathe in this verse as you read it silently again…

Let all that I am…

This means…every piece of you, your very existence, your character, your nature, your habits, your whole being, your inner man. As you stop and rest on these words, truly ponder what surrendering your whole self, every decision, every thought, every word spoken or unspoken, every intended and unintended move…let it all stop and let go of control, giving it to God, that you may truly may follow God and what He wants for you for the next steps.

Wait quietly before God.

The absolute hardest thing. But once we have let go and done the first part of the verse, we are able to sit and be quiet. When we let go of the world and its demands, actively seeking Him and what He wants for us, once we are able to wait quietly, we can hear Him over the noise of life.

for my hope is in him.

So why do all this? Because when we have surrendered ourselves and are ready to hear Him, we are reminded where our hope lies. We need to be quiet so He can remind us of His deep unaltered perfect love. We need to be still that we can embrace this fulfilling truth…

We need to be still so we can hear Him and that is where hopefulness begins.

Are you lost in a vast sea of life overwhelmed by waves of emotion or situations that crash over you, taking away every breath?

Stop…breathe in every piece of this verse, surrendering your will, being open and ready to accept what He has for you. Then you begin rebuilding your Christ centered foundation. Hope begins to grow creating peace as you know whatever comes your way, God is on the throne, He is on your side, and He wont let you drown.

Just rest in Him, trust Him, allow hope to grow.

Lord…as we give our lives to you. May we not be overtaken. May you reveal to us the things we try to control and may we surrender it all. As we do so, please speak to us. Please allow our ears to be open to hear. Please allow hope to grow its roots, deep in our hearts. May a well spring of peace overwhelm our hearts and minds as we realize our hope comes only from you. We are so thankful for what you did on the cross Jesus, giving us forgivess, freeing us from wrath, and giving us hope of eternity. We eagerly wait for you.

In Jeaus name…amen.

Praying for you always đź’™

Ax Heads Float?

What an incredible part from God’s word this morning

2 Kings 6:1-6 – the floating ax head

The company of the prophets said to Elisha, “Look, the place where we meet with you is too small for us. Let us go to the Jordan, where each of us can get a pole; and let us build a place there for us to meet.” And he said, “Go.” Then one of them said, “Won’t you please come with your servants?” “I will,” Elisha replied. And he went with them. They went to the Jordan and began to cut down trees. As one of them was cutting down a tree, the iron axhead fell into the water. “Oh no, my lord!” he cried out. “It was borrowed!” The man of God asked, “Where did it fall?” When he showed him the place, Elisha cut a stick and threw it there, and made the iron float.

I always read, pray, then read commentary

One part stumped me today… The place where you meet is too small for us so let us go to the Jordan. Now maye they wanted to go because things were always more plentiful near water. so why did this sons of prophets really want to go to the Jordan? Were they going to enjoy the land of plenty?

I checked Chuck Smith on blueletterbible.org and here is what he had to say about this portion of scripture…

Now the sons of the prophets said, “Hey, we have a hard time living with you, man, you live too strait. We need to build us a house to live in down by Jericho.” And so he said, “Fine, go down to Jericho and build your house.” They said, “Well, come down and help us.” And so he went down to Jericho with them and they were felling some trees by the Jordan River. And one fellow’s ax head flew off and went in the water. And he said, “Oh, no, I borrowed that ax head.” Elisha said, “Where did it fall in?” He said, “Over in there.” So Elisha took a stick and cast it into the river and the iron floated. And he said, “Grab it.” And so he grabbed the ax head.

In my Jon Courson bible commentary…he says the prophets wanted to move because the area was too small for them to live.

The definition in Greek / Hebrew says the area was strait, narrow.

So, I concluded that for me, for today, the reason they left is not really important. God wanted me today to understand whether they left because they wanted to live an easier life near a water source or they were ready to expand their ministry, either way, these men were ready to leave Elisha. Elisha gave them his blessing with “Go”. He showed God’s love and grace through his actions as they told him to help with building the house and he said, I will.” This is how our hearts need to be; ready to help the body of Christ with a simple “I will.” Not so worried about all the details and trusting where God leads you, he will always provide what you need to do as he ahs called you to do.

I also think it is important to note, these prophets’ sons and Elisha worked, with their own hands. They had to move to a new place, for whatever reason, and they did the work. So often in the body of Christ, we see needs and we want to recognize the needs, share with others about these needs but expect other people to handle the problem. We want to sit back and watch as others do the work. We cant expect others to do the work. We need to be willing to get the blisters, sleepless nights, and seasons of hard work. Don’t pass up opportunity because it is too much work.

Also, Elisha led by example. they told their leader they needed help and he obliged willingly. Are you doing the same in your circles of influence? At work, in your home, with your friends, etc, are you leading by example? Are you willing to serve or reluctantly following God’s requests?

As they chop wood to build, the axhead drops in the lake. Tools were expensive and needed to be forged. You could not just run down to wal mart, lowes or home depot and pick one up. So they borrowed one. Losing it meant you would need to payback and that was not something everyone could afford. For some this could mean endebting yourself to pay off the loan! I am not sure what it meant specifically for this man but by his reaction, we can tell he was really worried about the possible outcome from this lost ax.

The lost ax could have also meant that someone who owned the ax, trusted this son of a prophet with a very prize possession. Losing could cost him not only financially but possibly his friendship and reputation. Who would want to be know as the “guy who can’t be trusted when you allow him to borrow your things because he may lose them.” This man had a lot on his mind as this axhead dropped in the water.

Fearing he could not payback what he had borrowed, he stopped. Imagine his fear. Imagine his thoughts racing through his head. Now, here comes Elisha to save the day.

The son of the prophet knew where to turn… to Elisha, the bible calls him, “The man of God.” That is where we should turn right away in all situations…to God. We should go to brothers and sisters in Christ to carry this burden along with us in prayer and help, if the Lord leads.

Elisha, trusting God implicitly, knows what to do and asks where it fell. He does not panic along with the prophets’ son. He just says where did it fall.

As we experience situations in life, too impossible for us to handle, we need to be as calm as a cucumber like Elisha and respond with his demeanor and attitude, “Where is the problem? Let’s trust God to fix it.”

He tosses a stick in, then the axhead floats. The Elisha says…pick it up.

I love the simplicity of it. Here is a problem, and Elisha doesn’t flinch, doesn’t pray, just trusts his God who promises to handle everything. He just makes this very real problem, with very real consequences, and an impossible resolution, into a miracle. God just desires our faith These men knew where to turn, to the one who trusted God. Elisha knew anything was possible with God. He had faith in the one who created the heavens and earth, who allowed the heavens to open up and pour out rain, he trusted in the one who raised and destroyed kings and nations.  

Let us look at our impossibilities in our homes, our government, our families, our jobs, our finances, whatever the case, let us look at it, take it to God, trust in His resolution, His timing, and never let fear or worry plague our hearts or cloud our praise. Let us see the task God has put before us and trust that God will give us all we need and supply our needs, like the borrowed ax! Let us trust that although trials arise, God has not left but is there, waiting, to see when you will let him know about the problem so he can allow miracles to happen. But first, you must call on the only one who can make ax heads float. First you must believe. Then watch what He will do!!

Praying for us all until His return :0)

God inspired me as I was doing the dishes…

Thinking of so many things…praying over so much…

My heart became overwhelmed (as it often does). Listening to the gentle whisper of the Spirit…flowing words on my mind… “This is what I want you to write,” and “Write it now” As my heart filled with an overflow of words, I rejoiced!! Victory swept over me as I am often plagued about the whens and hows of writing and yet here it was, simply stated…Write Now!

Now…the perfect things for me to say next would be, I put down the soapy sponge, rinsed my tired hands, turned on the computer and typed away. With every key stroke, I felt the Holy Spirit minister to my heart as I imagined this message from him would minister to others someday. I imagined that outcome as I continued to wash each and every dish. With every swipe my heart wrestled with the word “NOW”, understanding that when the Lord calls, He desires action, because action often equals trust. And yet… I stood, losing the battle of obedience despite just receiving a message from the Spirit, and continued on my own quest to conquer this never-ending dish battle.

Why??

By the time I reached my computer to begin writing the thought the Lord has so graciously put on my heart, the thought that ministered to me so deeply…it was gone. No longer did I carry the banner of that message across my lips. No longer could my fingers complete the message…it was gone.

In that brief moment of staring at a blank screen… I tried, with all my might to remember what the Lord had just said…

Nothing…Nothing poured out as it had just a half hour before.

Attempting to remember what I had read for today; the same chapter as it has been for almost a week. I thought of another message…but my heart could not write discuss with a deep, rich passion, as that was not the message for today.

Continuing on with the cleaning war, I felt defeated, wondering why God would allow this message that touched my heart so deeply, this simple message of whatever it was filled my soul with an indescribable joy, could be lost in a moment?

And that was the true message for today…

God has a plan for you as He has for so many. His plan for each one of us is unique. Some are meant to be evangelists, others are meant to be moms and dads, others are supposed to serve at church, some are Pastors, teams of people bring bibles and share the gospel in war zones where the name God is a death sentence, a smaller number have the financial backing to support, while others are never meant to be seen or heard except by the Father in prayer. You see? We all have gifts and talents to be used at specific times, according to the will of the Father. So often we downplay these gifts, or downplay our importance in this life, by focusing on our thoughts, fixating our minds on the problems or situations before us, opposed to sitting and listening to the heart of God. Asking Him how does He want to use me today. Not to look at my crazy to do list and clap when I have completed it.

We are meant for more than a to do list. we were intricately created by the Father of life for a purpose and to fulfill His perfect plan.

What is God asking from you?

Listen to the Spirit and walk in faith to fulfill His perfect plan no matter what it looks like. He is faithful to complete the work He has started in you.

Always praying for youđź’™

I Am HIS Child

“See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!” 1 John 1:3

We forget quickly…

After seasons that take your breath away (or maybe you wish they did), sometimes, I feel ike I have nothing left but the very breath I breathe. Nothing left to give, not even a drop. Our hearts are worn. demands from life are endless, and opposition to our father in heaven and towards us grows exponentially… Sometimes it feels all too much.

Sweet friends…

When we are on our knees, and have forgotten how to even pray…

We are reminded… we are children of God.

We are children of the one who created heaven and earth, who created man out of nothing but sand and His breath. We are children of the one who allowed a flood to overcome the earth, who sent plagues on the people of Egypt, who parted waters, who took Elijah to heaven in a fiery chariot, who brought the dead to life, who sent His Son to die for you and for me. Oh sweet friend… you are His beloved. you are His treasure. you are the apple of his eye and He loves you so much, he calls you his child.

As His child, the Father never desires that you would be broken beyond repair. Experiecnces, brokeness, breathlessness are all used for His glory. As we are broken, the Lord, the potter begins to remake us, reform us, rehape His creation into beatuful clay pots, strong and vibrant, carrying His water of life to all those who are in need.

You are worth the sacrifice of His Son, Jesus.

Sit for a moment and ponder these thoughts beloved child of the true King of glory. That your foundation and security, your confidence, and hope, will be solely resting in the hands of the one who loves you the most.

Embrace Your Inner Martha

Mary and Martha, the eternal struggle within every woman’s being. Our hearts’ desire to be Mary: fixing our minds on things above, leaving our “To Do List” for tomorrow to sit with our Father today. Keeping our mind away from the Martha mentality: diligently working on daily duties, forgetting to nurture our relationship with God.

How do you handle the struggle?

“Surely, I have a Mary attitude,” we think if we attend a bible study, read through the bible in a year, do our devotion, listen to Christian music, write #blessed on every post, constantly pointing our hearts and minds back to heaven and God.

Comforting ourselves when we ignore the desire to dig deeper with, “I don’t have time because…” or “It’s not my season right now,” and “I will have more time one day when…” These words replay in our heads while we prepare for the day.

“So many things to do, never enough time Lord.” We silently whisper to the Lord, while we fill our planners, hour by hour.

Sweet friends, we are Martha.

As we read Luke 10:40, “But Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, “Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me.” Looking up Greek and Hebrew definitions, we see “distracted with much serving” means she was over occupied with an abundant amount of preparation. Bustling about, creating overabundance, when a basic meal was all they needed. Jesus, poor on earth, seeking food and shelter from friends, did not need extravagance but sustenance. The sin is not her busyness, or her preparations to bless her guests; it was her consumed spirit with every detail. The sin was her anger she put upon herself while creating the picture perfect meal. Poor Martha. Her excitement to make a simply delicious meal, allowing her time to enjoy the thing that could never be taken away from her (Luke 10:42) should have been her concern. Not frustration over Mary not helping.

The world needs Marthas; women who think and prepare for the needs of others. Preparations were necessary. Someone needed to be concerned with the meal and home, but not engrossed in details, missing the blessings in front of her.

How can we avoid being consumed?

Simplify.

Precious women who love Jesus, we need to keep our lives simple. Don’t throw away your schedule! Simplifying means not being anxious about the things of this world (Luke 12:25-32), but remembering how God desires us to live: “Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you (Luke 12:33).”

Everyone’s picture will be different.

Simplicity for me means creating deliciously simple meals, allowing time to enjoy my peeps and make memories at the dinner table. Allowing dishes and laundry to pile, dust bunnies to live another day in order to make time for family or friends. Saying NO to serving opportunities and favors, realizing I cannot possibly serve everyone. Simplifying will bring rest to my spirit. It will allow the time I need during devotions to dig through chapters, write down things that stand out in God’s word, do topical studies, and enjoy my time with Him.

HOW DO I SIMPLIFY? Stop and pray.

Pray the Holy Spirit to reveals it to you. When you begin striving and stressing, and the anger bubbles, ask the Lord to show you ways to make things simpler. Then, LISTEN to the Holy Spirit and be blessed with rest! We ask but forget to listen! Remember the reply Jesus gave to Martha in Luke 10:42 “But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her.” When you stop and nourish your soul with the thing nobody can take, your heart will be at peace to listen and receive. So stop, put your schedules down, and pray. Embrace the inner Martha! Prepare and plan. Listen when God says STOP, even if it feels out of character. Don’t be consumed with things but rather with the Creator of all.

Praying for you as you embrace your inner Martha 🙂

Ruby

Look Up

“I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” Romans 8:18

Stories of war, plague, famine, illness, murder, kidnapping, trafficking, job loss, job loss, financial stress, homelessness; the sadness just doesn’t end.

Seems like the heat on life has dramatically increased in the past years. As though the Lord is shaking up His people, allowing hard situations that their hearts may be tried and tested, increasing their perseverance, which will build character, and ultimately, hope.

Romans 5:3 “…but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. ”

Knowing this truth, our hearts should be so set on our future in Christ, we have a peace through trials, recognizing they are only for a time, and the glory in heaven we experience will be indescribable!!

“But you don’t know my suffering! You don’t know my situation! It is too much to bear!”

Look up dear friend….look up.

That’s what Paul is saying in Romans 8… look up friends, we are no longer bound by the law but have grace through the Holy Spirit. There is so much to be hopeful for!! Before you were bound by the law, with your sinful flesh binding you to a nature that cannot please God. but now you have been set free by Christ! you have been given the Holy Spirit, lives in you, will lead you, and will intercede on your behalf. You have been made a child of God through Christ. Now think of the future and how glorious it will be! Don’t worry about these cares of life because God’s plans, no matter how they appear, all work for a greater and bigger purpose; to bring God glory. And despite hardships, nothing will every separate you from His love. Jesus loves you so much He is interceding in your behalf now! So don’t worry about whatever may come or mistakes you may make because nothing can separate you from His love. Don’t lose hope because if God, the creator of all, is for you, who can be against you?

Wow!! What a wonderful hope we have in Jesus! What a wonderful reminder we can cling to! Lay down your trial, trust He is at work, working all things together for good, and keep looking up towards the hope of heaven!

Praying for you always…Ruby

Just Another Christmas…

My heart has been longing to share all day…

Dearest friends…

Christmas is here!!

Let me not begin with the frilly chatter, let me not talk about the desire of getting through the season, let me not talk about making it easier because let’s be honest… it never will get easier. Christmas has drifted so far away from the truth, it makes it almost impossible at times to keep our eyes affixed on what the true meaning is. We have plays, dinners, potlucks and parties. So many traditions and so little time. Christmas eve is greeted with an exhausted spirit and a puzzled heart. As we contemplate where all the time went, we comfort ourselves with the thought of all the good things we have experienced. Hearts are consoled as we reminisce on the new memories we made, not realizing the older memories slowly fade with every new one we create. Then… we fly into the new Year with dreams and plans while we begin to pack away another accomplished Christmas.

Why?

Why have we allowed it to go this far away from the birth of our precious Savior?

Why do we share about His birth in a way that lacks emotion and passion for the birth of the only one who could save our soul?

Why do we say Merry Christmas and sing carols but forget to share this joy with others?

Gazing on the holiday ornaments, pondering the price we are willing to pay to have this beauty in our home, why do we forget so often to count the cost of the cleansing we have received through salvation?

In the “JOY” of the season… although the story can be recited with ease, hearts lack zeal for the true reason we have this holiday. Listening to sermons, reading through the gospels, celebrating advent, we are reminded of why He came and died…

And yet… the simplicity of it all, the simplicity of us sinners needing the saving grace of a Savior can become nothing more than a truth we know and tuck away, hidden behind events and plans.

Well… Today I refuse to follow the current of our Christian culture. I refuse to live a life of mediocrity. I refuse to continue to recite the birth story of the Prince of Peace with a monotone voice! I refuse to lack zeal! I refuse to lack passion! I refuse to lack true joy for this season! I refuse to let the long lines and busy season rob me any longer of the true reason why I continue to live!

So, how can we change our hearts… by remembering!

Remember who God is. Remember what He has done for you. Remember who you were without Him and how your heart felt (Eph. 2:12). Remember how He has healed you of brokeness, redeemed you by the shedding of His blood on the cross (Eph 2:16), reconciled you back into relationship with the Father through forgiveness, and remember the truth… He is preparing a place (John 14:2-3) for all who confess Jesus is God’s Son and believe God raised Him from the dead (Rom 10:9).

You see friends… God loves you more than you could ever imagine.

As He created the world, before mankind was created, he knew. He knew sin would happen. He knew it all, and yet, he created us. Knowing who we would be, He still created us. With the ability to enforce our belief in Him, he still chose to give us free will, allowing us the option to choose Him. Knowing we would sin until we reached heaven, He knew He would need to send His only Son to remove the stain of sin by his death and resurrection. He still chose it; for you and for me. Now… that is a reason to celebrate all year long!

So as Christmas approaches… will you stand with me?

Will you refuse mediocrity?

Will you succumb to all the normal season or will you allow yourself to truly begin to celebrate in a new and fresh way?

Will you choose to take a few moments to remember and reflect on who you were so you can truly reignite the fire of who you are NOW in Christ??

It doesn’t mean we trade in our ugly sweater, stop the parties, avoid all potlucks (although that would help our waistline). Taking a stand simply means we will remember why we have hope. We will not allow the story of the birth of Jesus to pass our lips without truly contemplating the truth of it! We will invite people to come to church with us! We will pray for God to speak to us in a new and fresh way. We will stand in line, thankful for the opportunity to share Jesus with those standing in front and behind! It means the gift list and traditions will not reign over you but rather be a result of that joy; they will bring fresh perspective… “Because I am so thankful for our Savior… I want to celebrate His birth with these people on my gift list!”  you will take time to truly rejoice with other believers; truly fellowshipping as you talk about God’s love and the awesomeness of the saving grace of Jesus. Praise him through song with your whole heart. Be prayerful for opportunities to share this joy and grateful heart, allowing it to overflow onto others… until the day we hear the Lord descend from heaven and give a shout for the believers to come home (1 Thess. 4:16)!

Praying your season is truly joyous as you celebrate the birthday of our Savior!

Ruby

Your Testimony

And let us continue to consider how to motivate one another to love and good deeds, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another even more as you see the day of the Lord coming nearer. Hebrews 10:24-25

 

I am the crazy review lady. I hardly make any purchases without searching for a review or asking someone about it. SO many times I have stopped in the store and checked reviews on items; from toys, food, face cream, appliances, and more. Sometimes it takes so long, the store clerks stop and ask if I need help (usually its because I have kids in the aisle wrestling, racing, or acting as though this is their first experience in a store. Checking the reviews, allows me to deem whether a product is valuable or worthy of purchasing.

Our testimonies of God’s faithfulness remind me of reviews. As we share with others, all God has done in our lives, people hear and are encouraged to continue on. People who have not heard of God or believed before, hear your testimony and become inquisitive, desiring to know more about this “God” who saves you from your sin.

So what is our testimony?

Our testimony is just sharing or testifying to what God has done and is doing in our lives. It is not what you have been doing for God. This seems like such a basic definition but as a young Christian, studying the word, I did not understand what testifying meant. I thought it was something they only did on the wacky religious scenes in movies where the preacher would loudly yell, “Testify” and people would dance around, flailing their arms.

Our testimony is easy since we are experts at our own lives! We can share so much with everyone we meet! You can have coffee and share with a friend how He has loved me despite the seasons where I have lacked faith, lost trust and hope, and when I lost the vision of heaven. Share with your husband as you debrief about your day. Your kids can learn so much in your day to day interactions as you  share of His provision and faithfulness. Family members can learn from you as you gather for a meal and through conversation you share God’s sweet hand at work in your family life. The Wal-Mart employee can learn so much in your 3 minutes at the register as you share that your day is going great because you have hope in a God who is real and promises you eternity and abundant life if you merely believe! The librarian can discover your event of the day that is building your faith. So many ways to share God’s handiwork!

What if life has overwhelmed me and breathing is so much effort right now and I can’t see God active in my life?

First, just rest in knowing that every single person is allowed trials. It is through these trials and seasons that are faith is tested and refined. We need the difficulties to remind us who is in control and where we put our trust, and what our faith will produce: perseverance.(1 Peter 1:6-7) Testing of our faith develops a deeper relationship with Christ.

Second, remember the word and all it says.

Isaiah 41:10 Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

James 1:2-8 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters. whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do.

Revelation 3:10 Because you have kept my word about patient endurance, I will keep you from the hour of trial that is coming on the whole world, to try those who dwell on the earth.

Hebrews 2:18 For because he himself has suffered when tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.

God is using these situations to grow you but He will strengthen you and walk with you along the way. Later, you will be able to share and bless others. How wonderful our God is to use these situations for our good.

So as you walk today, pray for opportunities to share your testimony.

Praise God that He is a God who gives you experiences that will draw your heart closer to His. praise God when you share your faith building experiences, God will use it to not only refresh others but your soul as well.

Proverbs 11:25 A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.

Praying you are refreshed & you take your opportunity to share today.

Love…

Ruby

Draw Near

Now when Jesus saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, and he began to teach them….

Matthew 5:1-2

I have read this verse  so many times with this familiar  part of Scripture, never seeing the entire picture.

Often  when I envision  Jesus teaching the people, I see His standing, sharing God’s love, as He addresses the crowd. Not as an orator,  full of pride, but as a gracious Father instructing His children. But here we see a different picture.  

Drawing away from the crowd, Jesus desired to seek the Father; His comfort and support, His fullness and peace, and be rejuvinated by the Spirit. When He was alone, the outside noise and distraction faded, leaving an open and ready heart, prepared to listen and obey. Jesus knew the benefits of being alone in the presence of the Father. He desired the same closeness for His disciples. He truly wanted them to experience God in a way that would change who they are, reaffirm their faith in such a way that they would not waiver and would be forerunners and leaders of “The Way” or the early church. He was setting Himself in a place where the disciples could listen to the heart of their Master and Teacher; while allowing them time to ponder the lessons, and life. 

What a loving God we have to desire to draw us away to hear Him and not expect us to hear Him through all the noise. 

Unfortunately,  we often think the opposite. “Lord, I can’t hear you! I hear the pastor talking about being able to hear you but…”(insert notification on your phone, a ring, or you wander off as you begin remembering another thing on your to do list).

Our culture spends so much time enveloped in life, and the doing of things, we miss this very key part of the Christian walk, drawing away. 

It is when we draw away from the noise can we listen. It is when we draw away that we can truly begin to hear the Spirit as He ministers to our hearts, and begin to be refreshed in ways only God can. 

If we choose to ignore taking time to draw close to Him in the still quiet moments, we miss out on one of the most important parts of relationship with God. We miss hearing the heart of our Father.