Daily Reminders

Our High Priest

Hebrews 4:14-16

Compassion is “sympathetic consciousness of others’ distress together with a desire to alleviate it,” (Merrim-Webster’s dictionary.)

Yesterday, I had exactly that, compassion, towards my 6 month old daughter who is cutting teeth. Her normal demeanor is calm, non-fussy and smiley baby, so much so that she received the nick name “Chill baby.” But yesterday she was everything but chill. She fussed and cried. She whined every time I sat her down. Drool constantly poured from her mouth and occasionally it would cause her to gag and get choked up. I felt so bad for her.

As I was holding my pitiful drooling baby, Christ reminded me that he too sympathizes with our pain. In Hebrews 4, He is called our High Priest one who sympathizes with our weakness because he too has been tempted in every way but did not sin. It is comforting to know that the God of the universe sees our pain and our hurting and he hurts with us. When He saw the pain that Martha and Mary felt after the death of their brother Lazarus, he was deeply moved and wept. (John 11:33-35)

There is nothing we can go through in life that our High Priest has not experienced. We can trust in him for our comfort and our peace. If you are hurting, know that Christ sees your pain and understands exactly how you feel. Will you allow him to comfort you in this time?

Daily Reminders

Hinderance in Prayer

Matthew 6:5-14

I find when I abide in Christ, he allows me to see connections with life and his word more clearly. Yesterday, he used my feisty, red headed, two year old daughter to remind me how to pray.

After being told to be patient and wait for the thing she wanted to do, she fell to floor in a fit of self pity and rage. She laid on her stomach kicking, screaming and her head buried in her arms. Then She would occasionally scream, “mama, I want you!”

The whole time I’m sitting on the floor watching her drama play out. I would speak softly and say, “Joanna, I’m right here.” But she could not hear my voice because she was too concerned in letting out her grievances.

The more she screamed the more apparent the lesson was in prayer and how I have pitched these same fits with God. I have walked right into prayer frustrated and and angry. I start listing out all my problems or start complaining about the unfairness I have been subjected too. I’ll yell out, “God I want you, I need you!” In reality, what I wanted is for him to hear me complain about my life and how unfair it seemed.

I could not hear His voice say, “I’m right here.” My ears were closed off because I was in my rage of self pity. I could not see him at work in the hardship I was experiencing because my eyes were buried in my arms. I came into prayer not to hear him but for him to hear me.

The same as it was for my daughter, it took me stopping my self pity fit and looking up to see God and actually hear his voice.

How often do we walk into prayer needing to be heard and pitching a fit about all that has gone wrong with our life? Then we leave that time of prayer never hearing from the Lord because the whole time was consumed with complaining.

Christ gives us an example of the right way to pray. We begin knowing who we are speaking with, the sovereign Lord over all. We begin to praise him for who he is and thank him for all he has done. Then we ask for forgiveness for our disobedient hearts and to forgive others. When we use this model we will find that prayer is a precious communication with God. We will be able to see our circumstances the way he sees them. We will begin to hear His healing words and what we were so frustrated with will be put into perspective.

Letters of Encouragement

To The Wayward Child

Son/Daughter,

Do you not know that I love you? Do you not know that I formed you in your mother’s womb? I know all the days before you. I have a plan and purpose for you. My child don’t you know I want you. I want to prosper you not harm you. You are worth more to me than the way you are living.

Come to me and let me clothe you in righteousness not shame. Let me take these filthy rags from you. Let me give you a new life in me. Let me restore you. The world wants to destroy you. It breaks and poisons you from within. Let me into your heart and heal what is broken and restore what is lost and do what only I can do, heal you through and through. Leave this life of fleshly desires. Leave this life of going your own way. Leave this life of anxiety and depression and come to me.

I will give you hope. I will guide you. I will give you peace and I will bring forth joy in your life. Just come to me.

Scripture

Letters of Encouragement

Walking in The Presence of The King

adult affection baby casual
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

If you are anything like me, you probably have woken up early to spend time with God and pray. After that wonderful session, you get up from your chair and you walk right into your life without him. You might not even realize you do it. You just start in with your todo list and your other normal routine things and you don’t notice you are walking alone until the wrench gets thrown into your plans. Life just begins to crumble. You become frustrated and you feel defeated and you soon realize that you have ran ahead and are not walking hand in hand with God. The Lord desires you to meet with him early before you start your day so that he can speak into your heart. He also desires to lead you through your day, reminding you of who He is and of His promises.

Lets walk in the presence of the King.

Daughter,

Wake up my beautiful girl! Meet with me this morning and let me encourage you and speak my promises into your heart. Daughter, ready your mind and your heart, surrender it to me. Keep your ears attuned to my voice. Pay attention to my words and see how they differ from the noise of the world.

My Daughter, take my hand and walk with me. Let me lead you through your day. Let me teach you as we go. Let me show you how to be a good steward of what I have given you. Tend to your children and love them as I love you. Provide for them as I have provided for you. See them as I see you. Take their hand and lead them, speak to them as I speak to you. Daughter, go about your home preparing for your family. Prepare as I prepared a place for you. Feed them what nourishes them as I feed you the bread of life.

Daughter, walk with me. Uplift your husband as I have uplifted you. Encourage him as I have encouraged you. Submit to him as I have submitted to my father and trust in me. Forgive as I have forgiven you.

Daughter, do not let go of me or my words. Keep your eyes on me. You will walk tough roads and dark valleys but I will be there. Daughter, hear me when I say, “Do not be afraid for I am with you, I am your God!” Know, nothing can ever take you away from me. You are mine and I love you. Let us walk into this day together, hand in hand.

The King

 

“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭23:1-6‬ ‭NIV‬‬
http://bible.com/111/psa.23.1-6.niv

 

Lessons

Feelings

Do you ever get caught up in feelings? I don’t feel like this is the right thing, the right time, the right way. I don’t feel like I can do it or I’m strong enough, smart enough, confident enough. Do you get caught up in making decisions based on those feelings? I have answered yes to both of those questions. I regret the decisions I have made based upon my feelings because they always have led me to disobey God’s Word and stray from him.

Lets take a look in scripture where feelings led to disobedience.

1 Samuel 13:5-14

“The Philistines assembled to fight Israel, with three thousand chariots, six thousand charioteers, and soldiers as numerous as the sand on the seashore. They went up and camped at Mikmash, east of Beth Aven. When the Israelites saw that their situation was critical and that their army was hard pressed, they hid in caves and thickets, among the rocks, and in pits and cisterns. Some Hebrews even crossed the Jordan to the land of Gad and Gilead. Saul remained at Gilgal, and all the troops with him were quaking with fear. He waited seven days, the time set by Samuel; but Samuel did not come to Gilgal, and Saul’s men began to scatter. So he said, “Bring me the burnt offering and the fellowship offerings.” And Saul offered up the burnt offering. Just as he finished making the offering, Samuel arrived, and Saul went out to greet him. “What have you done?” asked Samuel. Saul replied, “When I saw that the men were scattering, and that you did not come at the set time, and that the Philistines were assembling at Mikmash, I thought, ‘Now the Philistines will come down against me at Gilgal, and I have not sought the Lord’s favor.’ So I felt compelled to offer the burnt offering.” “You have done a foolish thing,” Samuel said. “You have not kept the command the Lord your God gave you; if you had, he would have established your kingdom over Israel for all time. But now your kingdom will not endure; the Lord has sought out a man after his own heart and appointed him ruler of his people, because you have not kept the Lord’s command.””
http://bible.com/111/1sa.13.5-14.niv

Lesson

Saul allowed his feelings to dictate his obedience when he said, “so I felt compelled to offer the burnt offering.” No doubt Saul felt the pressure of the looming threat of the Philistines and the feeling of urgency and fear as his men began to flee and scatter. However, trusting in the Lord was key and obeying his command was imperative. Saul lost the possibility of having his kingdom established over Israel for all time. Instead, his kingdom would not endure and a new man, who desired God’s own heart, would be king.

Feelings and emotions come from the heart and by nature the heart is inherently deceitful. It is when we lay down those feelings to trust God and obey, we have the heart and mind transformed into his likeness. If we build our faith upon our feelings, it is as if we have built upon sand. There is no firm foundation. The daily waves of life will erode our faith away and it will slowly collapse and when the storms hit, it will decimate our faith all together. It is when we build upon the firm foundation (Jesus Christ, His Word) we are able to stand. When daily pressures beat at us we know we can stand firm in his renewed mercies. When the huge storms of life hit and we are battered and beaten, we will once again be able to stand, because of the foundation of truth we have in Christ. How will you live your life, obeying by feelings that change as the wind or will you choose to trust and obey past what you feel today?

 

Supporting Scripture:

“The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?”
‭‭Jeremiah‬ ‭17:9‬ ‭NIV‬‬
http://bible.com/111/jer.17.9.niv

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭12:2‬ ‭NIV‬‬
http://bible.com/111/rom.12.2.niv

““Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.””
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭7:24-27‬ ‭NIV‬‬
http://bible.com/111/mat.7.24-27.niv

Letters of Encouragement

A Letter to the Overwhelmed:

Child of mine,

Im talking to you. I’ve called you into deep waters. I’ve called you out of a place of comfort. I see you beginning to become frantic and fearful. I see your mind working 100 times harder than it should; worrying and trying to figure out what’s next, what’s best, and always asking Lord give me direction.

Child of mine, I see your heart warring against what you want to do and what I’ve called you to do. Beloved, I see you and I hear you. Take rest child of mine. Trust me to lead you the way. I will give you everything you need, every word to say. My child you are not alone. I will go before you preparing the way. Remember what I have already done for you and stand firm in my promises. I love you.

“But now, this is what the Lord says— he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior;”
‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭43:1-3‬ ‭NIV‬‬
http://bible.com/111/isa.43.1-3.niv