Are You Aware, He Cares?

“Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” Matthew 6:26 NIV, emphasis mine

 

The little seed shuttered as it was pushed down deep into the earth.

It’s dark here.

It’s cold here.

It’s unknown and I’m all alone.

That little seed had little faith that anything good could come from this desperate hole in which he found himself.

What that seed did not know is that his Creator had already provided for his needs long before he came into existence.

When we read Genesis 1, we see the order of creation.

The first day: light.

The second: water, into clouds and oceans.

The third: dry ground.

Three days into creation God had created everything a small seed would need to not only survive, but to thrive.

Long before the seed was there, its needs were already provided.

What about us?

We need the light, the water, the land, the plants and animals for food. Reading Genesis 1, we see all those things were created before mankind.

God has a habit of providing for needs before the needs arise. He just often conceals that provision until our need is immediate and has captured our attention.

Why would a just and loving Father do that?

Because He loves us, and wants us to trust Him.

I don’t know where you are today. Maybe you are down in a dark, damp, desperate dungeon, helpless to escape on your own. I do know God sees you. He hears you. And, He loves you. He only allows you there, because with His proper care, He knows you will blossom and eventually bloom into something so much larger and brighter than you ever imagined.

He is aware of your every need; He’s already compiled the provision. Ask Him for it. Ask Him for peace and patience while you wait. He is waiting to deliver it into your hands.

Reflections:

Read Genesis 1. Note the order of creation. Note that when the complex creations were introduced, fulfillment of their needs was already in place.

Read Genesis 1:26 “Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our own image, in our likeness, and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.”

Who are ‘us’?

How did God provide for our spiritual needs before He ever created us?

Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, Thank You that You do indeed provide for our needs before we become aware of them. Not only our physical needs, but emotional and spiritual needs as well. Thank You that indeed, everything You have created is “good.” Please help me to remember that You have taken care of me, even before I cry out to You. Thank You! Amen.

 

Thanks for reading!  Please return by Monday, August 31, for the next post.

Lessons From Tipper, Part I: Choosing To Follow

How a nine-week-old puppy demonstrates how we are to follow God.

IMG_1475“Choose this day who you will serve.” Joshua 24:15 NIV

What can you learn from a nine-week-old puppy? If you are like me, a lot!

My family and I recently added a new family member: a Rottweiler puppy named Tipper.

One of the first things we noticed upon bringing Tipper home was how diligently she would follow family members everywhere.

Walk in the backyard, she’s bound to follow.  Try to prepare dinner in the kitchen; she’s circling the island with me.  When my husband heads into his home office, she is at his heels. When we are playing ball outside and it is time to go in, she comes when I call, even though she’s having so much fun. Even when the poor pooch is tired, she’ll slowly drag herself along if we call her.

Her first family trained her to always stay right with them, to always follow them.

I have come to realize I should be more like Tipper.

Do I follow God as closely as Tipper follows my family and me? Do I immediately change my course when He tells me it’s time to go “in?” Do I follow Him even when I’d prefer to curl up and ponder other things? Do I selflessly love Him, through thick and thin, as Tipper loves us unconditionally?

We are commanded in Joshua 24:15 to ‘choose this day whom you will serve.”

Tipper has obviously chosen to follow our family, wherever we may lead her.

Have we determined to follow God, no matter what? Even if it’s a direction we would not have chosen? Or not in the timing we would have selected? Even when we’re exhausted and just feel we can’t go on, do we drag ourselves to where He’s calling?

Can we trust that that He loves us and He will care for us always in all ways?

Thank you Tipper, for such a strong example of obedience!

Reflections:

Who am I serving today?  Is it who I want to serve when I stop and consider it?

Prayer: Dear God, thank You that You are indeed always there, ready to lead and guide me.  Please help me to see the error in trying to do things my way. Please help me remember to search for Your guiding hand to help me through this journey of life. Amen.

 

Thanks for reading! Please return by Monday, June 1 for the next post!

Simple Shepherds, Intelligent Actions

“So, as the Holy Spirit says: ‘Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion during the time of testing in the wilderness.'” Hebrews 3:7-8

Are you overwhelmed with how to fit in the time for spiritual activities? Maybe you are a mom with a new baby.  Maybe you are a student facing finals and looming deadlines.

Even when our lives are filled to overflowing with demands, God understands.  He is often the One who gave us these schedules!

In Luke 2:8 we read of shepherds, living out in the fields keeping watch at night.  The shepherds had a job that was also constantly demanding. They must consistently care for the sheep and forever watch their flock for intruders. They must protect them from harm and prevent each from wandering off and becoming lost.

They were diligently doing their job that night God wanted to communicate something very big to them.  So, while they were going about daily life fulfilling their obligations, He met them right where they were.

After they received the wonderful message from the angels and witnessed the wonder of a sky-wide chorus of praising angels, the shepherds revealed their hearts through their next choice of action:  each left his work in search of his Savior.

When God spoke to them, they were ready to listen.  Ready to set aside any other preoccupation, all other responsibilities. They dropped everything.

Then, after they had seen the Savior and reported the miraculous events to Mary and Joseph, they returned back to their jobs. But they returned as changed men. Each allowed the experience to settle over him and penetrate his heart, prompting praises from his lips as he returned to work.

What can these shepherds teach us?

1) They went about daily life, taking their jobs seriously, doing what needed to be done.

2) When God spoke, they noticed and listened.  They did not take their jobs so seriously that they did not have time for a divine interruption.

3) They were ready to move, even from very important responsibilities, when God requested it.

4) They allowed Him to teach and to change them.  When each returned to work, he was a changed man, and not afraid to express it.

5) Although he was changed, he “did not become so spiritually focused that he was no earthly good.” He returned to his tasks but did it while praising God.

God can and does still reach really busy people; we just need to be willing to be interrupted.

 

Reflections:

What have I learned from the shepherds?

On which of these points do I need to work?

Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, Thank You for authoring work for me today. And, Thank You for still interrupting my moments today. While there will always be physical needs to tend on this earth, I must allow myself to be interrupted for divine instruction.  Please teach me to discern when I must stop the work You have given me so I can learn more about You. Amen.

Thanks for reading!  Please return next Monday, December 22, for the next post.

Choosing Joy

Consider it pure joy, my brothers, when you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” James 1:2-3

Glancing out the frosty window, I inwardly groaned.  Gray skies, bare trees, and, what-on-earth? Snowflakes!  Not already! Not after a cooler than usual summer. Not so close to last winter, when the lows broke almost every record on record.

I lit a fire in the fireplace, resigning myself to finishing our school day curled up under the blanket on the couch, my back planted firmly against the window framing the offensive weather.

Movement at the nearby sliding doors commanded my attention.  Our homeschooled first grader was lining up all the kitchen chairs like soldiers saluting a queen: two straight rows each facing inward, in anticipation.

“Mommy, come,” she pleaded, a smile on her lips as she deposited an armload of cushions and a fuzzy blanket atop the closest sentry. “I want to watch the snowflakes while you read.”  She continued with her nest-building activity and her chatter, her words of wisdom penetrating my heart.  “God made each snowflake different you know.” She is so excited to watch the snow! I marveled at how that could be.

She perched herself across three chairs, tucking the blanket around her, “Come,” she invited once more.

Watch the snowflakes.  Enjoy the beauty of crisp white flakes floating from heaven almost as if God himself wanted to create a magical moment of wonder to simply captivate a seven-year-old girl.

Ruth was captivated too, but not with wonder. Ruth knew discouragement to the Nth degree. She was a widow, living through a famine, in a foreign land.  But she did not just sit and wallow in her circumstances.  She chose to persevere. She chose to seek out joy, and not turn her back against her new-found God when the circumstances were challenging.

We read in James 1:2-3 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, when you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.”

While it must have been difficult to remain in the company of someone who was sad and felt God made her life bitter, Ruth did not give up and bail out.  She remained by her mother-in-law’s side.

She counted on God to some how, some way, work it out for good.  And before she could see just how it would work out, she chose joy.  Joy of facing trials head-on.  Joy of trusting God to do the impossible. Joy of waiting, and watching for God to make it right.

Ruth knew everything was in the Lord’s hand.  And when I think about it, I acknowledge that too.  So I have a choice: I can choose anger or dismay.  I can choose to remain in disappointment, wallow in frustration or negativity.

Or, I can choose to see the good in the moment, or choose to search for good in the moments to come. I can choose to see beauty in the setback.  I can choose to search for silver-lining blessings in the snowstorm.

I can choose joy.

 

 

Reflections:

1) What reaction do I choose when facing a squall or full-blown storm?

2) In Ruth 1:16a, Ruth had made the choice, and she stuck with it even when presented with more challenges and hardships. It’s often best to decide on an attitude (hopefully positive and faith-filled!) before circumstances occur.

3) How might I respond differently to life’s challenges if I were to choose a mind-set of joy?

 

Thanks for reading! Please return by Monday, December 8 for the next post.

I Just Didn’t Know

“Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path.” Psalm 119:105, NIV

Caught up in conversation with my two daughters in the backseat, my teachable moment fizzled as I spied flashing lights in the rearview mirror.

A few moments later the polite policeman asked if I had any idea how fast I was going.

Nope.

Did I know the speed limit on that stretch of highway?

No idea.

He astutely pointed out, I just didn’t know.

In Genesis 20, we read of King Abimelek, a man who fell victim to a scheming prophet.  King Abimelek gazed a pretty foreign woman, Sarah, and appreciated her great beauty. Upon inquiry, he learned she was traveling with her brother Abraham.  So the King treated both Sarah and Abraham well, bestowing upon them many great gifts. Then, King Abimelek sent for Sarah and took her as his wife.

God intervened, communicating with Abimelek in a dream and saving him from sin.  Because Sarah was not just traveling with her brother, but her husband as well.

Verse three of this chapter tells us, regardless of our knowledge, or lack thereof, wrong is still wrong whether we possess a clear conscious or not.

And, although God is gracious, we are held accountable for our actions.

“I didn’t know” is not an acceptable excuse.  Not for a King claiming a married woman as his wife, nor an excitable mom flying down the highway.  There are consequences for our actions and we can be certain God sees us every time.  And He will pull us over!

Reflections:

1) Do I mentally excuse myself from consequences because I had no idea?

2) Is it acceptable, excusable, to break the laws of the country when I didn’t know that law? Is it excusable to break God’s laws when I didn’t know His laws?

3) Spending time in His word is one of the best methods for learning God’s laws.  How can I regularly carve time out with my Bible?

Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, Thank You for placing me here, in this time and place.  Here, I have Your complete Word.  I have the education so I am able to read Your word.  I have access to it in my native tongue.  You have blessed me with all those resources plus the ability to own my own personal copy of Your word.  Please help me keep my focus on Your word and not become distracted in my time in it. You gave me these laws to protect me from harm,  heartbreak, and from certain death. Please nudge me, reminding me in the midst of my busy days to stop, take time and rest in Your great wisdom and love, and to focus on Your law.  Thank you for loving me so much! Amen.

Thanks for reading! Please return by next Monday, December 1, for the next post.

Wanting Wisdom, Part I

If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him.” James 1:5 NIV

 

At ten years old,  Ella was a lovely girl with high standards. She was enthusiastic and energetic.  Her mom wasn’t surprised when she asked for permission to try out for her school’s Show Choir.  She loved to sing, dance, and do gymnastics.

She tried out, and she was selected. Oh, the hours the entire group practiced after school, and the hard work their positive teacher expected and put in herself.

Then, as they began performing, a local group asked for them to sing at one of the community charity events. Pleased for the publicity, they all accepted eagerly.

At the event, the DJ introduced them and called them up to the performance area. He asked for them to free style dance to one song before they performed: a dance contest between the girls and the boys.  The kids looked at each other excitedly. Then the DJ played the song, a completely inappropriate song for girls and boys of ten years of age.

Her mother sat in the stands watching her precious daughter. Ella caught her mom’s eye.  Those innocent eyes asked, “What should I do?”

 

James 1:5 tells us what we can do, what we should do.  Whenever we don’t know what to do, we should ask God.  Sitting comfortably in a car or on a couch, it seems so simple.  Yet, when faced with a sudden unexpected situation that requires a response now, it’s not always easy to remember what we should do,

 

How do we train ourselves? We need to remember the TRUTH.

T- This world is not our home. (Hebrews 13:14) This is all we’ve ever known, yet this is not all there is. We need to live in this world but not of it. We have hope of a better place for our eternity. Studying Scripture helps us keep that forefront in our minds.

 

R- Recall no one loves us like God. (John 3:16, Psalm 117:2, Jeremiah 31:3, Psalm 103:11)

 

U- Understand that because we live on this earth, we will have trouble. (John 16:33)

 

T- Trust in God. (Proverbs 3:5-6) He will always supply the wisdom, the faith, and the love you need to do what He asks.

 

H- Heed His commands. There are reasons for His rules.  Reasons we may not always see clearly at the moment, just as the two-year-old doesn’t understand why he can’t wander into the street at will.  God wants the very best for His children, so we must obey Him in order to receive His very best. (John 14:23)

 

Jesus said “You will know the Truth and the Truth will set you free.” (John 8:32) We can train ourselves to focus on God and His instructions, His Word. We will still face difficult situations in this life, but we can face them completely confident that God will supply all our needs, including the need for His wisdom.

 

Reflections:

 

When have I been suddenly faced with a situation where others were looking to me or at me, to see just how I might handle it?

 

What were my thoughts, did I automatically ask God? Were my thoughts paralyzed?

 

What did I do and what was the outcome?

 

How can I handle future situations?

 

Prayer: Dear God, You are so holy and omniscient. You know all.  You see all.  You know my desires to serve and please You.  You also know where I fall short. You know how the insults of others can hurt, and You care about that pain. Spending more time with You will ease that pain and that’s exactly what You want for me.  Please show me more moments each day I can focus on You and Your Truth.  Please help me implement those truths, especially when I’m put on the spot. Thank You for Your great love, Amen.

 

Suggested resource: You Are Special by Max Lucado. This children’s book perfectly illustrates how much a close relationship with God will ease our internal struggles with daily life on earth.

 

Thank you for reading! Please return Monday, October 27, for the next post.

 

Lifting Leidy

 and a little child will lead them.” Isaiah 11:6b

Six-year-old Colette sat coloring at the kitchen table.  She loved the feel of the markers in her hands.  She loved the broad stripes of color she created with each stroke.  And, she loved these oversized coloring sheets featuring her favorite character: Hello Kitty. As she decided on her next color, she glanced across the table to watch mom open the mail.

“Who’s that?” she asked, dropping the marker and climbing down from her chair to satisfy her curiosity. She stood next to mom, her arm affectionately wrapped around her mother’s neck.

“This is Leidy.  She lives in a country called Columbia.  She’s your age.” explained her mom while reading the enclosed correspondence.

Colette’s eyes widened as she took in the small frame, and dark, lonely eyes of the girl in the photo.  “She’s six like me?” she questioned.

“Yes. But her world’s very different from yours,” explained her mother. “She’s in this program to help her have access to nutritious food when she’s hungry, and she a doctor when she’s sick.  She also gets to go to school to learn to read and write, and how to take care of herself.  And, she also gets to learn about Jesus there.”

“Does she get to color Hello Kitty?” Colette asked, glancing back at her markers and picture.

Her mom answered slowly, thoughtfully, “I don’t know.  But I would imagine she has never seen Hello Kitty.” Her mom explained the few other details of Leidy’s life that she knew.  She also shared how their family sponsored Leidy, prayed for Leidy and her family, and trusted God would work a miracle in Leidy’s life.

Colette asked is she might have one of the bookmarks  with Leidy’s updated picture on it. “To put on my nightstand, so I can remember to pray for her every night.”

A few nights later, mom returned from an evening meeting.  Colette’s older sister, Katelyn, had needed to put Colette to bed.

“Mom,” said Katelyn, “Colette was adamant tonight about praying when I tucked her in.”

“Oh, we almost always pray with her at bedtime,” commented her mother, beginning to tidy the kitchen.

“No, I mean for the little girl on the bookmark, Leidy. She prayed for food and safety for her and her family, and,” she paused a moment, “she prayed that her family would come to know Hello Kitty and Jesus.” Both Katelyn and her mom shared a smile.

“Hello Kitty and Jesus hardly rank together…” began her mother.

“Agreed,” said Katelyn, “but Colette’s serious about praying for Leidy.  She said you told her God could use our prayers for Leidy to change her life.” She smiled, “Colette wants to help.”

They each knew God had used Colette to remind them each of things of greater importance than deadlines, meetings and homework.  God was reminding them, that sometimes, it takes a little child to lead them closer to the heart of God.

 

Reflections:

When have I discounted a child’s opinion or viewpoint simply because he’s young?

How can I adjust my schedule, so when those “teachable moments” occur, I have the time to allow a child to teach me?

Prayer: Thank You Lord, for all the precious children in my life.  Please unrush my days, my hours, my moments, so I can listen to the wisdom You tuck in the hearts of children, and draw closer to You.  Amen.

Thanks for reading! Please return by Monday, October 13 for the next post.

 

 

The Perfect Ten

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.” Colossians 3:23 NIV

As I settled myself onto the cold, hard, gray bleachers, I chose to ignore the prevalent smell of perspiration. Once again, I was at the gym. I watched the gymnasts of varying abilities.  The teen girls at the uneven bars, swirling around like the hands of a clock on fast forward.  The teen boys incredible show of strength as they practiced the rings.

As I glanced down from the balcony to the gym floor,  I  spied our six-year-old daughter mounting the bars.  I saw her flip herself forward over the bar.  Perfect execution. Perfect landing. Next, she set up to flip backwards over the bar.  Her legs came up quickly and she folded in, flipping under the bar instead of over top.

She repositioned her feet. She exhaled with vigor.  And then, she glanced up.  She caught my eye.  I gave her a smile and a ‘thumb’s up.’

She paused and grinned that precious missing teeth grin and waved.  Then her face grew serious as she repositioned her feet and double-checked the spacing of her hands.  Better do my absolute best, mom’s watching, her facial muscles conveyed as she focused her attention on that back flip.

Colossians 3:23 reminds us, “whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.”

While my eyes were often on our daughter at practice, they were not always. But God’s loving eyes are forever on us.  He sees and evaluates each and every task we perform.  Extending grace to a grievous co-worker. Practicing patience with a forgetful friend. Speaking truth to a tense teen. And, choosing to love when it feels unreciprocated.

Our obedience to this command often creates a chance to witness to others. Our obedience and our attempts at obedience can also draw us closer to God. We must, very honestly, assess ourselves and determine what we’re lacking.  Then, we must humbly ask God to supply our needs. He’s happy to fulfill His promise in Philippians 4:19.

We don’t need to score a perfect ten with every attempt.  We just need to try to give each day, each task, our ultimate best. Through the challenge and perseverance, we’ll be rewarded.

Because any move God executes is always a perfect 10!

 

Reflections:

When am I most likely to give a task my best?

When am I most likely to not give something my all?  Why?

Read Philippians 4:19 “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.” NIV

How, even when I don’t feel like it, am I obeying God when I give a task my all?

Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You always want what is the very best for me.  Thank You for supplying my needs for motivation, conviction, and overcoming temptation to walk away from what You have called me to do: give each task, each relationship, my all.  Thank You for always supplying my needs, even the need for encouragement to persevere. Amen.

 

Thanks for the reading! Please return by Monday, October 6, for the next post.

Totally Trustworthy!

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” Hebrews 13:8

 

She eased into the school desk, wiping her auburn hair from face. Whew!  She’d slid into her seat just seconds before the bell sounded.  Arranging her text-book and notebook on her desk, she glanced forward as she took her pencil in hand.

Her pink glossed lips parted in surprise as she realized Mr. J, the math teacher was missing.  Suddenly the creaking of the classroom door commanded her attention. It was slowly sliding open, and what was this? Mr.  J was slithering across the floor, face beet red with exertion, chest heaving as he huffed and puffed, attempting to cross toward his desk.

She watched with growing confusion and then alarm, as the color from his face traveled to that small bald spot directly on top of his head. She quickly glanced around as he made his way behind the podium.  Other students had noticed his entrance and the noise level had abruptly decreased to almost utter silence. Hmmm, I’m not seeing things, she thought to herself.

Mr. J was apparently not finished. He suddenly leapt from behind the podium, and struck a stance, feet apart, knees bent, and arms thrust out in front of him. “You didn’t see me, huh?  That’s because I’m a ninja!”

She glanced around the room once more, noting a few giggles, and many shocked looks on her peers’ faces.

“Okay, open up your texts to page 47,” he said, resuming a much appreciated sense of normalcy.

Later, as she recounted the episode to family and friends, she still could not decipher what exactly had possessed the teacher to make such an entrance. The look on her face and in her eyes conveyed the confusion, and wariness with which she now approached that classroom.

It shakes us when things don’t go according to plan.  It shakes us harder when people don’t live up to our expectations.  And it really rocks us when someone does something so unpredictable that we wonder if maybe they are on the cusp of a nervous breakdown!

We are promised in Hebrews 13:8 that Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.  He came to reunite each of us with God.  Our sins don’t change His game plan.  He still offers us forgiveness, no matter what.

He won’t refuse us entry into heaven because we made some awful decision at one point or another. He will not refuse us acknowledgement because we didn’t live a perfect life.

Whatever we do, we can expect what His reaction will be: How far is the East from the West? That is how far our sins have been removed.  Not just the “little” sins, all sins.

So even when we are clearly not thinking, we know what His answer will be when we ask with a sincere heart for His forgiveness: Yes, He will forgive.

What a joy that someone in this crazy world can be totally trusted!  Trusted with what happened yesterday, trusted with today’s events and feelings, and trusted with our futures.

Thank you Lord for such amazing grace!

Here is a song by Phil Wickham, to encourage us all throughout the week! Christ’s love is amazing and unfailing and He offered the ultimate sacrifice. How’s that for totally trustworthy?

 

 

 

Reflections:

Monday: Reflect on a situation which completely confused you, mainly because it was so radically unexpected. How did you respond?

Tuesday: When you reflect on people you know and have known, how many have proven totally trustworthy?  I certainly hope you each have a few in your lives!

Wednesday: So far, what have your experiences with Jesus been? Has He proven totally trustworthy?  Do you really know Him?  It’s difficult to remember, but is absolutely true, that just because you have decided to do life with Jesus, it does not mean you will have any easy life, free of pain.  Recall the promise in Romans 8:28, He will use all things for the good of those who love Him.

Thursday: Read Hebrews 13:8.  List what you know about Christ.  Search for Scriptures which pronounce  that list as truth. Edit your list over time as you learn more about Him through life experience and reading Scripture.

Friday: Dear Heavenly Father, How You authored this life, with all its twist and turns nad still manage happy endings is beyond me.  Thank you for Your love, Your grace, and Your hope that through Your great sacrifice I can openly and repeatedly come to You.  For You are faithful, and totally trustworthy. Amen.

 

Thank you for reading! Please return by Monday, September 29 for the next post.

 

 

Garden of ‘Even,’ Part II

 

“And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head and you will strike his heel.” Genesis 3:15

 

Sin had officially entered the world. With all its pomp and circumstance came changes, lots of changes.

But God was ready with a plan.

Psalm 91:13 reads, “You will tread upon the lion and the cobra; you will trample the great lion and the serpent.” Sin entered the world through a choice that a human made.  She was deceived by Satan in snake-skin.

But humans don’t need to fear Satan, or snakes.  We are promised in that Psalm that we will tread upon them and trample them. God had a plan to save us from Satan for eternity.  Accept Christ and His sacrifice, and spend eternity in heaven.

What about today? Life here on earth?

Jesus Himself gives us authority over Satan. In Luke 10:18-19 Jesus replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven.  I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.”

Maybe Satan doesn’t tempt you with an apple. Maybe it’s something you don’t ever want to discuss. Maybe you are a “Good Person” ninety percent of the time.

That other, challenging ten percent? God gives you the authority to cast Satan away. Romans 16:20 tells us, “God will soon crush Satan under your feet.”

Although Satan wanted to ‘get even’ with God in the garden of Eden, it is God who has the final win. God authored a plan to not only save our souls forever, but also our hearts today.

Reflections:

Monday: What are some of the consequences of sin that affect you personally today?

Tuesday: Read Psalm 91:13 How do you see yourself ‘trampling the lion and the serpent?’

Wednesday: Read Luke 10:18-19 What promise do these verses contain? How or when might your claim that promise? How does this knowledge, when implemented, change how you approach life?

Thursday: Read John 10:10 What purpose does the enemy serve?

What purpose does Jesus serve?

Friday: Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, when You created the world and us, You had the best of everything planned. Humans chose sin, falling headfirst into Satan’s snare.  But You, through Your great love, authored another way to return to You.  And You offered us not only eternal life, but also a full and abundant life here on earth. Thank you for such a great, unfathomable love. Amen.