Podcast Soul Fitness Image3I’ve got something new for you! I created something to help you get your soul fit – the easy way! It’s a podcast that may just throw you off your holy rocker!

If Christianity sometimes seems hard and complex because of all things you’re expected to do….let’s cut you some slack.

  • If you feel like God isn’t on your side because you’ve made too many mistakes…you’ll feel his favor again.
  • If you’ve grown up feeling like you have to perform for God in order to get God to like you, love you, or listen to you…you’ll learn how to beak free.
  • If you’re confused about what God wants to give you as a believer…you’ll discover what’s rightfully yours.
  • If you want to grow in the Lord but it just seems too hard…you’ll discover an easier God-approved way!
  • If you’re worn out from going to church and serving and it’s just not fun anymore…you’ll get that fire back.
  • If you’re thinking God’s not interested in making your dreams come true or bringing you that miracle you’ve been waiting for…you’ll realize your breakthrough is closer than you think.
  • If you’re tired of feeling condemned…there’s a breath of fresh grace waiting for you.

You need this!

But I want to warn you: This is NOT your Mama’s religion! No rules. Just righteousness. How you say? It’s powered by grace. Grace TRAINS us to live right.

If you’re tired of Christianity’s so-called rules and regulations, if religion makes you want to gag, tune in to the “Soul Fitness – Made Easy” Podcast. It’s available in iTunes or you can listen now by clicking here.

Each week I’ll offer you little nuggets, I call em Podbites. They’re a little something to savor as you go about your day. They will fuel you, encourage you, and help you pick up the curve balls that life has thrown at you.

Listen to them as you’re getting ready in the morning, listen in the car, or as you’re buzzing around the house in your sweats and slippers. They’re short, they’re fun, and they’re geared to inspire you and give you hope.

Here are some of the podcast episodes I’ve created that you can listen to right now:

  • Why We Need More Hypocrites in The Church (It’s not what you think!)
  • If You’re Feeling Far Away From God, Here’s How to Get Back
  • Don’t Be Fooled By Your Scars – Here’s What They Reveal About You
  • Does God Think You’re Good Enough to Get Into Heaven & Receive His Blessings

And here are some upcoming podcasts you can look forward to:

  • The Sweetest 5 minute Daily Bible Reading Plan You’ll Ever Use
  • How to Keep Fighting When You’re a Bloody Mess
  • 7 Steps to Dealing With the Jerks in Your Life & How to Get Revenge Too
  • Surprising Fact: Christians Don’t Need to Confess – What They Ought to Do Instead
  • The Key to Knowing if It’s God’s Will to Heal
  • The No Fail Guide to Making Your Dreams Come True

Join me! Tune into the Soul Fitness Made Easy Podcast. Munch on them, and share. You’ll be pushing toward a faith that’s freeing beyond belief!

Click here to listen in iTunes. Or click here to listen right now: Soul Fitness Made Easy. And if you’re over there in iTunes land, please leave a review, it would be mighty helpful to me…I want to know what you think.

Talk to you inside!

If You Lost Your Toes Like This Guy Did, What Would You Think of God’s Grace?

Warning: This is a bit graphic, but it’s a true story…

I visited a guy in the hospital who had the toes on his right foot sawed off. Amputated to be exact. Same thing really. They’re gone. And according to him, they were just hacked off. What’s worse is that by this time next week the surgeon will be loping off his entire foot and leg right up to his knee. Not a happy day.

He’s wondering what he did to deserve this. He’s wondering why God didn’t value the fact that he’s a good man and does good things for others. He’s wondering why God doesn’t see how hard he’s worked all of his life to be a good dad and husband.

He gave to those in need. He helped with his hands. He has been a good man. But apparently it wasn’t enough for God.

Is it ever? 

Why do we get sucked into believing it comes down to what we’ve done? How is it we have been brainwashed into thinking that if we live right and holy lives God will be good to us and bless our socks off?

Tell that to the man who will only wear one sock. Yeah, this guy who will only have one foot. He’ll only wear one shoe. And he’ll either walk with a prosthetic or not at all.

Where does his deeds come into play? Shouldn’t that be enough insurance in God’s eyes to save his toes, foot, and his fingers too?

That’s were you have it wrong.

It’s not about what you do. It’s about what Christ did for you.

As I sat beside this man’s hospital bed, he shared he was petrified that the doctors and nurses were out to kill him. He began to wonder if God was too.

He said to me, “God brought you here. Now, you can help me. You can give me peace.” I hated to argue with him. But he thought I was the one who was going to make it right for him.

You Can’t Borrow Someone Else’s “Good”

See, since he couldn’t rely on his own good deeds to rescue him, he was trying to rely on mine. No can do. That still won’t work. We can’t borrow anyone’s good and apply it to our situation.

The only good we can borrow is Christ’s. Again and again the NT tells us that it’s not by our works that save us. It’s not our good intentions that bring us God’s grace. It’s through Christ.

I had a tough time trying to help this man understand this. The grace and healing he needed was there for the taking. It was free but he insisted on paying for it. And when he couldn’t produce what he thought were enough works to pay for what he needed, he tried to access mine.

But, I couldn’t pay for what he needed either. 

Over and over again I kept explaining, I can’t believe for you. You have to believe. That’s all it takes. Believe in what Christ has done for you. That is the only thing you need to grab the gift of grace is faith. It’s free if you will believe.

Galatians 3:3-6 NLT

How foolish can you be? After starting your Christian lives in the Spirit, why are you now trying to become perfect by your own human effort? Have you experienced so much for nothing? Surely it was not in vein, was it?

I ask you again, does God give you the Holy Spirit and work miracles among you because you obey the law? Of course not! It is because you believe the message you heard about Christ.

In the same way, “Abraham believed God, and God counted him as righteous because of his faith.

No one pays for it but Christ.

The problem is that if we try to pay for it, we will be stuck in that system of payment. Sadly we will never have enough to pay for what we need. That’s why we don’t get the blessings of God IF we’re still trying to pay for it ourselves.

So stop working to buy your miracle.

You can’t do enough to pay for the grace you need.

If you keep trying to buy it yourself, you’ll never get it.

You can’t afford it, that’s why Christ had to buy it for you.

When you finally realize salvation and miracles are free, you’ll get the grace and mercy you need.

Are You Using Your Words Like This…
images-2Tyler, my 19-year-old son just came in from a run. He’s a tall guy, 6 foot, 4 inches and wears size 14 1/2 running shoes. Because he’s a big guy with even bigger feet, not much shakes him. But he came in the house huffing and puffing. As he was catching his breath, he said, “I sure did a lot of sprinting today….cause I had a dog chasing me!

I asked him, did he catch you? He said, “No, he was about to, but when I realized he was faster than I was, I turned around, looked at him and…used my words!”

“What words did you say?”

“STOP!”

“So what did the dog do?”

“He stopped. I didn’t have to worry about him again. He stayed put.”

That’s one smart guy! Why? Because Tyler’s been taught to say what he wants to see. He knows the power of words. And that’s because he knows his words have authority.

Authority, you might ask? Yes, Tyler knows he’s been given authority over things on this earth. And he’s not alone. If you’re a believer in Christ, you do too. You have authority.

Where does this authority come from?

Jesus Christ. His father, God, gave him authority and he’s passed it on to us.

Ephesians  1:19-22 NLT

I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms. Now he is far above any ruler or authority or power or leader or anything else—not only in this world but also in the world to come. God has put all things under the authority of Christ and has made him head over all things.

Ephesians 2:6 NLT

For he raised us from the dead along with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms because we are united with Christ Jesus.

You and I, Tyler and every believer out there have the same authority, if we choose to use it. We are sitting in the place of authority.

How do you use it? Like Tyler did…

Use your words!

Tyler wanted to see that dog stop. So that’s what he said: “Stop!”

Using Your Words…

What do you want to stop? A divorce? A debt? A sickness? Open your mouth and say what you want to see.

  • Instead of talking about your bleak future, start using your words: “I am finding my purpose, everything I do is a success. I have hope because of Christ.”
  • Instead of complaining about a broken relationship, start using your words: “This relationship is being healed, it will be better than ever. God is helping us to mend the hurts.”
  • Instead of staring at your empty bank account. Start using your words: “Money is coming into my accounts. God is showing me how to prosper and be a success. I have more than enough to meet my needs and to help others.”

Want to stop the beast from nipping at your heals like that dog did to Tyler?

Use your words!

If you’ve enjoyed this post and it has inspired you to use your words, pass it on to a friend. Use the social media buttons for easy sharing! They’ll thank you!

imagesIn case you haven’t heard, Google Reader is saying goodbye. Yep, the folks at Google are shutting her down July 1. How could that affect you? If you use Google Reader to view this blog or any other blog feeds, you will no longer get them. And that would be sad because you’ll miss all of the great content from LindaTravelute.com. But, hooray! There’s a fast fix! Here are two options: 1. You can simply sign up to recieve posts and updates by email. It’s fast and easy. All you have to do is pop your email into the box after you click on this link: Easy Email Updates. 2. You can switch to a different RSS reader. Feedly is a great choice and they have a simple one-click Google Reader import. If you want to use Feedly and would like more information, click here: Tips for Google reader users migrating to feedly. If you’d like some other RSS options, here are 12 Google Reader Alternatives. Either way, you only have until July 1st so you’ll want to move fast. Times a tickin and I know you want to stay in the loop receiving great content. I pray you have a great week. And as always, email me with your prayer requests. I’m here for you, keeping you in prayer. Dr. Linda Helping you TRANSFORM your life, one God-thought at a time!

Everyone has a past. Our past can be filled with embarrassing moments, stains, sins, and hurts. Thinking about the past can make you tense and feel guilt. It’s confining. So, how do you get past your past? Let me show you…

Have you ever held a newborn baby in your arms and thought, how beautiful, this is a brand new creature? That’s a baby without a past.

Did you know that if you believe in Christ you have been made a new creation? And if you are a new creation – think about this – your past has ceased to exist.

2 Corinthians 5:17 KJV

Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.

Think it through. If you are born again, you have no past. No matter what you’ve done, the past is non-existent.

  • lying
  • cheating
  • stealing
  • adultery
  • murder
  • immorality
  • perversion
  • slander
  • or any other sin

You are a new creature. All things have passed away and you are a new creation.

YOU HAVE NO PAST!

Not ready to believe that? Here’s some Biblical proof:

1 John 1:9 MSG

…if we admit our sins– make a clean break of them– he won’t let us down; he’ll be true to himself. He’ll forgive our sins and purge us of all wrongdoing.

1 John 2:1-2 MSG

I write this, dear children, to guide you out of sin. But if anyone does sin, we have a Priest- Friend in the presence of the Father:Jesus Christ, righteous Jesus. When he served as a sacrifice for our sins, he solved the sin problem for good– not only ours, but the whole world’s.

John 3:17-18 MSG

God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it. And why? Because of that person’s failure to believe in the one-of-a-kind Son of God when introduced to him.

The only time you have a past – is when you remember it.

So, here’s a little tip–quite bringing it back up. God doesn’t want to talk about it anymore. And if you’re smart, you won’t either. Drop the subject. Look, God has, He said…

Isaiah 44:22 MSG
I’ve wiped the slate of all your wrongdoings.
There’s nothing left of your sins.
Come back to me, come back.
I’ve redeemed you. “

Hebrews 4:16 NLT

So let’s walk right up to him and get what he is so ready to give. Take the mercy, accept the help.

So what can you do to get rid of your past?

Just picture yourself as a brand new baby in God’s arms. How beautiful! You’re a new life. You have a new start. A new begining. A new life in Christ. That’s you. Beautiful! But you’ll never get rid of your past if you keep remembering it. So forget it.

The key to getting rid of your past – is to picture yourself WITHOUT ONE!

imageHave you ever stepped on a grape? Gross! You felt the juice squish under your foot, right? Nasty! If you’ve ever felt like you were losing your mind, let me show you how you can get peace by bruising Satan under your feet.

The word “bruise” in the Greek is used to describe the act of smashing and crushing grapes into wine.

Romans 16:20
Paul said, “And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet.

How to Crush Satan

This is the kind of bruising you can give the devil. It also means the act of snapping, breaking, and crushing bones. In fact it’s the idea of breaking bones so severely that they can never be mended or healed. Bones that have been utterly smashed and crushed beyond recognition.

So when Romans 16:20 says that Satan is bruised under your feet, this means that the devil has been subdued. Stuck. Squished like smashed grapes. Bones broken and crushed to pieces. That’s what’s going on under your foot. And if that’s his condition…

He can’t move!

….Unless he makes you believe he can.

How Satan Can Crush You

The only thing the enemy is good at is mind games. This is where he wins in our lives: in our minds. If he can make you think wrong things, he can make you speak wrong things, which will make you receive wrong things. That’s his game. He works in the mind. He really doesn’t have any power over you unless you give it to him with your thoughts and words.

If Satan Can Make You Think You’re Defeated, You Are

Because Jesus completely destroyed Satan’s power over you through his death and resurrection, Satan was smashed, crushed, and bruised by Jesus’ resurrection. If you believe that, then you can take the authority and power that belongs to you and use it.

But, if Satan can make you think you don’t have that power and authority, then he’s got ya – right where he wants ya! And that’s when you begin to think you’re defeated. And if he can make you think your defeated…you are. It’s that simple. He has no power over you unless you give it to him.

Satan is Just an Illusionist

So what do you do? You have to constantly remind yourself that Jesus already won the victory for you. Your win is already insured. Your healing, your financial breakthrough, your miracle has already been won. Just believe what Jesus has already accomplished and your right to have it.

You may have some things that have been trying to defeat you:

  • Habits you’ve had for years
  • Attitudes you’ve clung to
  • Grudges you can’t shake off
  • Struggles you seem glued to

You’re No Fool to Satan’s Games

At the cross of Christ, the power over those things was broken. Their power over you was utterly crushed. Now it’s time for you to do some crushing. Quite being a fool to Satan’s games. With the God of Peace backing you up, you’re a lot bigger than the devil.

So stand up tall, hold your head high, and remind Satan that you’re smarter than he is. He’s not pulling the wool over your eyes anymore. Tell him what the Word of God says, this will let him know you believe it. And since you know what is rightfully yours – he can just back off! And that he will.

Ready? Go crush that sucker!

image

Exhausted? Tired of not being able to catch your breath? I know the feeling. But let me tell you, you were not meant to live like this. It’s time to get off that train. Hop off quick; it leads to stress and burnout. God made an escape for you in this harried, crazy mixed up world you live in. Come on, I’ll show you how to escape the madness and find the rest you need.

We will never begin to rest unless we believe it’s been given to us.

And that’s tough, because it works against our culture. It even works against the discipline and work ethic we’ve been trained to prize. I was raised to work hard, give it all I’ve got, and I did. Problem was, I gave so much in years past, I had nothing left. My physical and mental health suffered. So did my relationships with my husband and then, little boy.

How I got suckered into believing I had to wear myself out…

I was told that there’s no rest for the weary. You too? And how about this one: the early bird is the one who catches the worm. Because I swallowed that, my goals were to catch all the worms! And that I did! I became driven. Sometimes — too driven. Sleeping only 4 and 5 hours a night, working non-stop. No breaks. Even working on vacation. That my friends, is a set up for failure.

Busyness is a Badge of Stupidity

“Taking it easy” sounds so absurd in our culture. We’ve bought into the lie that busyness is a badge of honor. It’s not. Busyness is a badge of stupidity. If you don’t have time to get the rest you need to recharge your mind, soul, spirit, emotions, intellect, and relationships, you are going to break in one or more of those areas.

I’ve seen it over and over again. I’ve talked to top business executives, small business owners, doctors, pastors, stay-at-home-moms, even students. They wonder how they can keep up the pace. They’re running so fast they don’t have time to enjoy their life. And that’s not the way God designed us to live. He said he came to give us life more abundantly.

Abundance doesn’t come at the cost of running yourself ragged. You can’t enjoy an abundant life if you’re too tired to enjoy it.

Matthew 11:28-30

Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me– watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.

Even on our day off, we don’t get a day off.

What do you do on your day off? Work more? I bet you do. It’s called housework, mowing the lawn, running back and forth to soccer games and little league practice, tackling that honey-do-list, and on and on.

What else do you add to the list? Babysitting your grandchildren? Making goodies for the bake sale? Oh that’s fun. Yes, but sometimes it can be exhausting. Nothing wrong with giving of yourself…as long as you have enough of yourself to give.

The key is balance. A little of this, a little of that, and you will be spared the dull grind of weariness.

So go ahead, give yourself permission to rest today. Tomorrow. The next day. And the next day after that.

  1. Schedule down time in each day. (God did, at the end of the day; he paused and reflected on what he had done.)
  2. Schedule down time in each week. (God took 1 day off out of 7 too, setting a precedent for us to follow.)
  3. Schedule down time in each year. (This is the icing on the cake, go ahead, and enjoy it. You’ll be better for it!)

Your health, physical AND spiritual, depends on it. God didn’t design your body to work non-stop. He designed you to require rest. He not only gives you permission to rest, he commands it.

Exodus 20:8-12

Observe the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Work six days and do everything you need to do. But the seventh day is a Sabbath to God, your God. Don’t do any work– not you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your servant, nor your maid, nor your animals, not even the foreign guest visiting in your town. For in six days God made Heaven, Earth, and sea, and everything in them; he rested on the seventh day. Therefore God blessed the Sabbath day; he set it apart as a holy day.

So give yourself a break.

You don’t rest when the work is done. You rest so you can get the work done.

Rest, and he’ll help you get the rest done!

Sometimes Acting Like Christ Requires You to Be a Fake

You’ve received the assignment, you’re just not sure you can or ever will pull it off. What assignment? That one in the Bible that strongly encourages you to “act like Christ.” If you’re at all like me, that can scare the sweat out of your glands. How in the world will you pull that off? Christ is perfect. We are not. But take heart, I’m going to show you how faking it will help you make it.

You can act right? You can’t? Oh, come on now, I know you can act! You’ve been caught in the act before. And you gave a superb performance!

Let me jog your mind…

Have you ever been depressed, but because you were at work or with friends, you smiled, laughed, and carried on like all was well in your corner of the world? Yep, you were acting.

Or remember having a heated conversation with someone at home? You’re both going at it tooth and nail. Tempers flying. Voices rising. All of the sudden, the phone rings. You answer. Did you notice how your voice changed? You were cheerful, calm, and cordial? Good job! Yep, you were acting.

Or how about this: You are driving your kids to school. They are cutting up in the back seat. You’re about to blow a gasket because they won’t leave each other alone. They’re picking at each other and one starts to cry. It turns into a fistfight and before it gets bloody, you turn around with an ugly face and motion with your hands to stop their shenanigans or your going to stop the car.

Just then, a car slides into the lane beside you, you look over and it’s a familiar face. It’s someone who goes to your church. Quickly you gain you composure, slap both hands back on the wheel, and release the tension in your face. You give a polite smile and wave to your church buddy projecting all is well and you’ve got the kids under control. Yep, you were acting. Again.

We’ve all found ourselves in situations like these or close to it. Anytime we are feeling one-way but choose to reign in those feelings and act differently – we are acting. That’s not a bad thing. It’s actually good. Because you have an ability that will help you “ACT” LIKE GOD. Even if it’s just an act at first, that’s ok. Let me explain.

Acting Mode is Something Everyone Can Slip Into

  • Children know how to act. (Hopefully!) Have you ever said to a child, “That’s not how to act.” Yes? Guilty! You were teaching them how to act.
  • Teenagers know how to act. Have you ever secretly watched how a teenager behalves? You sized them up to get an idea if they were a good kid or a bad kid?
  • Employees know how to act. Have you ever watched a fellow employee, observing their work performance or interactions with people? Of course.

Every one can slip into acting mode and it’s quite appropriate.

So when I tell you that the way to become like Christ is to “act” like Christ, it may require some acting, and that’s ok. Cause guess what? Where not all there. Nope. And we have a long way to go before we are totally like Christ.

Ephesians 5:1, 2 NIV

Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.

The word, “followers” is the Greek word mimeses, which means to imitate someone or to mimic what you see someone else doing. It was used to describe actors who performed on a stage. It also describes a model. No, not the kind you see in a magazine, but someone who models behavior like a parent, teacher, coach, or mentor.

When someone has great attributes and high character traits, others are encouraged to “follow” that person’s lead and “act” like them. That’s why Paul used the word, mimeses, when he said, …be followers of me (1 Corinthians 4:16).

This verse is saying: “I’m strongly urging you to act like me! Observe what I do, and do the same things I do.”

The Process of Becoming is Sometimes Slow

It takes time learning how to act differently. Just like being in the cast of a play or movie, it takes time to learn your lines. It takes time to get into your character’s persona. You have to study your character and know him inside and out so you can move like him, talk like him, act like him. That takes time. And that’s to be expected.

Acting like Christ is going to take time too. And that too, is ok. If you are a new believer or one who just has some growing to do, your acting will get better with time. Don’t be disappointed when you don’t act right. Just recognize you could have done it differently and decide next time, you will!

Fakes are O.K.

Word to the wise: don’t beat other people up thinking they are such big fakes! Have you ever caught yourself saying, “They don’t fool me, they’re just putting on a good act.” Yes, maybe they are! Let me tell you, the more someone acts on a consistent basis, the more their acting behavior becomes real.

Sooner or later, they’ll become the real deal. So cut them some slack. And cut yourself some too.

Consider this passage from the Bible:

Ephesians 4:13-15 AMP (Bolded words are the author’s emphasis)

[That it might develop] until we all attain oneness in the faith and in the comprehension of the [ full and accurate] knowledge of the Son of God, that [we might arrive] at really mature manhood (the completeness of personality which is nothing less than the standard height of Christ’s own perfection), the measure of the stature of the fullness of the Christ and the completeness found in Him.

So then, we may no longer be children, tossed [like ships] to and fro between chance gusts of teaching and wavering with every changing wind of doctrine, [the prey of] the cunning and cleverness of unscrupulous men, [gamblers engaged] in every shifting form of trickery in inventing errors to mislead.

Rather, let our lives lovingly express truth [in all things, speaking truly, dealing truly, living truly]. Enfolded in love, let us grow up in every way and in all things into Him Who is the Head, [even] Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One).

So yes, it’s ok to act. And in order to “act” like Christ, it might at first be an act, but that’s ok. That’s where you start. At some point you’ll quit acting and it will really become who you are. So in short, “acting like Christ” may require some acting!

Now, go get your Bible, and study your lines.

You could do someone a favor by sharing this post. Tweet it or post it on Facebook. You’re friends will thank you!

 

I’ve got an amazingly thoughtful assistant. Every year, Tanya sends me flowers on Bosses Day. Last year, I hung onto those flowers after they died. They were still beautiful even after they began to whither and decay.

My best friend, Kathy, is married to a guy who loves taking professional photos of flowers. Bob has hundreds and hundreds of the most striking flowers I’ve ever seen captured on film. I have some of his photographs of the stunning flowers God created on the walls of my home and office. (See the picture in this post, that’s his!)

Flowers are breathtaking! More so, than the model on the runway or the clothes on the hottest gal in Hollywood.

The reason flowers mean so much to me is because they remind me of how God takes care of me. Every day. Without fail.

Matthew 6:28-34 says, And why worry about your clothing? Look at the lilies of the field and how they grow. They don’t work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are. And if God cares so wonderfully for wildflowers that are here today and thrown into the fire tomorrow, he will certainly care for you.

Why do you have so little faith? So don’t worry about these things, saying, ‘What will we eat? What will we drink? What will we wear?’ These things dominate the thoughts of unbelievers, but your heavenly Father already knows all your needs. Seek first the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need. So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.

Why This Scripture Can Be Frustrating Rather Than Reassuring

I love this scripture because it brings me peace – on most days. But on some days it makes me a little uneasy. Why? Notice that it says God promises to meet our DAILY needs? That means we may not have what we need for the end of the month until the end of the month. That can cause some anxiety, are you with me?! Yet, if we settle ourselves down and drink in His peace we can be confident of this…

God gives us our daily bread. That means each day’s needs will be met. They may not always be met in advance but, don’t fret. Don’t flip out. Try to relax. And remember the flowers.

Why Does God Have Us Experience the “Sweat Factor?”

If you’re like me, we want our needs met in advance so we don’t experience the “sweat factor”. We want to avoid discomfort and the unknown.

Sometimes God has us sweat it out, going without things in advance so we learn to rely on him rather than what’s in the bank, pocket, pantry, or gas tank.

My husband and I have been through difficult and draining seasons. When I say draining, I’m talking, draining all the money out of our bank account kind of seasons. Been there too? And yes, there’ve been times we didn’t have the money to buy our kids groceries.

There were times I had to ration my make up and only “put on my face” when I knew I was going out that day. Days I didn’t have a few measly bucks to buy a cup of coffee at Starbucks. Times I couldn’t do lunch with a friend because I had no cash. Some of you can relate, I know.

Yet, I can honestly say, I have never gone without what I needed. Somehow, God made the food stretch or sent help from a friend, or hey, maybe when we went to bed, he multiplied the cereal in the box sitting under the counter! I wouldn’t put it past him. He’s done similar things for the prophet Elijah and the widow (I Kings 17:13).

God Doesn’t Promise Daily Needs Will Be Met in Advance

When my husband and I would get in a tough spot and it didn’t look like we’d even have gas for the week, I’d look at Ted and say , “Daily. God will meet our needs daily.” God didn’t say we’d always have it 2 or 3 days in advance, a week, or even sweeter – a month in advance. He said, he promised to meet our needs daily.

There were days when the cell phone bill was due. No money in the bank. Yet, God…

There were days when the electric bill was due. No money in the bank. Yet, God..

There were days a doctor visit was needed. No money in the bank. Yet, God…

What’s your story? I’m sure you can complete some of those sentences and add some of your own.

So if you’re in a spot like that, know this, it’s just a season and it will pass. Abundance is coming your way because God said it would. He said he came to give life and life abundantly. He said we would see his goodness in the land of the living. Right now though, he might just be providing for you daily. If so, hang in there. Daily provision is better than none. And you can know, it’s a sure thing; God will come through, even if it’s at midnight!

Next time you see a flower in the field, along the roadside, or in a bouquet on your desk, remember the flowers God dresses every morning. They look magnificent. They have everything they need and you do too. Even if it is just enough for today. It’s enough.

Remember the flowers!

And watch God remember you.

Here’s a free PRAYER ROCK-IT BOOSTER that will help you pray for you needs “From Day to Day”:

Picture This:

Your supplier is meeting your daily needs miraculously. God has resources you know nothing about, solutions outside your reality, and provisions outside your possibility. He hands you a worry-bazooka, you pull the trigger and walk away relieved.

Scripture This:

Psalm 31:19 NCV

…how great is Your goodness, which You have laid up for those who fear You, which You have prepared for those who trust in You.

Lamentations 3:22-23 NLT

The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning.

Psalm 138:3 NCV

In the day when I cried out, You answered me, and made me bold with strength in my soul.

Pray This:

God, you are great. Help me not to lose sight of your goodness. You’ve laid it up for me because I fear you. You’ve prepared your goodness for me because I trust in you. I am refreshed every day when I think about your mercies, which have no end. Your faithfulness overwhelms me. You are better to me than I am to myself. When I cry out, you answer me. Make me bold with strength in my soul so I can trust you to provide for each day’s needs. I will not be concerned because you said you’d provide. So, God, thank you.

Say This:

Anxiety fades as the memory of God’s goodness takes center stage. My anxiety-filled days stand no chance when I cling to God. I am seeing God’s provision even if it is one day at a time. As I trust and believe, I will receive.

You probably have people in your life that you could help by sharing this post with them. Please share it and tweet it so they can be encouraged. Let’s see God provide for them!

Photo Credit: Robert Harkema Photography

Why Keeping the 10 Commandments Can Keep You Out of Heaven

As a kid, memorizing the 10 commandments was a big deal. Get em all down and in order and you got a ribbon. Maybe a sticker. Maybe even a prize.

And if you lived by them, wow! You were all that!

But that’s all.

If you’re into rule keeping, Christ didn’t die for you.

Well, actually he did, but he did so unnecessarily because you’re trying to make yourself “right” with God instead of relying on the “work” Jesus did on the cross to make you “right” with God.

Let me explain.

If you’re living by the 10 commandments expecting that to pay your way into heaven, you’ll only end up with a cute little ribbon on your chest. Cause even if you’ve memorized them perfectly, you sure can’t live them perfectly. No one can. And it won’t gain you any brownie points with God, so quit trying. If you use that man made system to get you into heaven…you won’t get in. Ouch!

Want to know what you can do to be saved and get into heaven?

Trade your man-made system for a God-made system. Here’s how the Apostle Paul describes it in Galatians.

Galatians 2:16:

We know very well that we are not set right with God by rule- keeping but only through personal faith in Jesus Christ. How do we know? We tried it– and we had the best system of rules the world has ever seen! Convinced that no human being can please God by self- improvement, we believed in Jesus as the Messiah so that we might be set right before God by trusting in the Messiah, not by trying to be good. (MSG)

Galatians 3:13-14:

But Christ has rescued us from the curse pronounced by the law. When he was hung on the cross, he took upon himself the curse for our wrongdoing. For it is written in the Scriptures, “Cursed is everyone who is hung on a tree.” Through Christ Jesus, God has blessed the Gentiles with the same c blessing he promised to Abraham, so that we who are believers might receive the promised Holy Spirit through faith. (Bold text by the author.)

How do you receive the blessing of Abraham, a.k.a. “salvation” and everything that comes with it?

Faith. Not works. Faith. Not keeping the commandments. Faith.

Faith In Christ’s work, not your own! (Because your works just won’t do the job!)

Most Christian believers haven’t been taking advantage of the gospel (The New Covenant). They’ve been living under the Old Covenant, abiding by rules and laws to make them right with God. That’s basically living as if Jesus hadn’t come to save them and set them free from all those rules and work-related righteousness. If that’s you — give it up!

Discover what you have in Jesus Christ. It’s not about what commandments or rules you keep. It’s not even about how much work you do for the kingdom. It’s about the work Jesus did on your behalf. Let him save you. Cause you’re not good enough to save yourself.

Whew! That’s a relief!