Jesus – The Center of Self Discovery

_The more we let God take us over, the more truly ourselves we become - because He made us._ - C.S. LewisA sense of self worth. We search for this hidden treasure within ourselves. It’s a journey experts tell us — full of twists and turns, trials and errors. We are instructed to head off on a secret self discovery mission — and once we find ourselves, then we will be happy. Then we will have magical answers. Then will we know our purpose. 

Clearly, it’s important to realize our skill sets and unique talents. These beautiful gifts are truly kingdom assets and we should embrace them with all our hearts. 

As Christians, we can get lost in the hype of self discovery. We embark on a mission that is said to beautiful. We are promised to gain an understanding of what fills our joy tanks and what fuels our insides. However, sadly, that joy we’re after simply doesn’t appear like it was promised. 

Could it be because we are looking in the wrong places or to the wrong people? 

The glitter and glamour fades and we are left feeling confused. We want some revelation to burn across the sky — and turn on the lights of our souls. Yet we still feel lackluster and void of vision. 

The simple truth is — if we are looking for self discovery without placing Jesus in the center, we are simply trying to drink water from a well that’s bone dry.

We should be praying — Lord, it’s you I want to define my life. You define me! 

“But whoever is united with the Lord is one with him in spirit.” – 1 Corinthians 6:17 

May we yearn for a “self discovery” that leads us closer to the throne room of Christ. While seeking our self worth, may we look up and see the face of Christ — for he is the answer to every question and remedy we seek! 

“The more we let God take us over, the more truly ourselves we become – because He made us. He invented us. He invented all the different people that you and I were intended to be. . .It is when I turn to Christ, when I give up myself to His personality, that I first begin to have a real personality of my own.” — C.S. Lewis 

May our wandering feet purposefully lead us to the empty tomb of everlasting love. It is through this love that we truly realize the weighty reality of our worth. We see that our lives meant enough for the King of Kings — to shed his precious blood. 

That’s worth, my friend. That is self discovery. 

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Refined and Resting in the Waiting

I want a peace beyond my understandingI want to feel it fall like rainIn the middle of my hurtingI want to feel Your arms as they surround meAnd let me know that it's okayTo be here in this placeResting in the.jpgYou’ve called us to do hard things. Life isn’t easy or fair. We ice-skate on treacherous sheets of frozen water in anticipation of the calamity below – holding our breath. Will the ice crack and splinter? Will we fall below into the tundra of the unknown? It depends on what we fix our eyes upon – the good, the lovely, the praiseworthy? If that’s our focus we surely will not drown.

This world spits sulfur and hurls debris at our fragile bodies. We close our eyes – trusting and waiting for deliverance. When will it come, we ask you? You are good, we cry. Show us your favor! Shine down on us the light that illuminates the dark and dissipates the fear hovering over our heads.

We walk like the Israelites trusting in the desert. Gazing at the clouds above and the fire in the sky by night. We know you are near. We cling on to the truth – by faith, not by sight. We know you are watching over our steps; but we are an impatient people. We yearn for the swiftness of your rescue. Unaware of the truth that you are making us stronger in the process, we diligently wait for your army of goodness to infiltrate our camp.

You sing over us – and call us precious gems. We are being refined in the waiting.

“I want a peace beyond my understanding. I want to feel it fall like rain in the middle of my hurting. I want to feel Your arms as they surround me. And let me know that it’s okay to be here in this place. Resting in the peace that only comes. In the waiting.” — Greg Long, In the Waiting 

Abba Father, we are ready for your warrior-like skills. We beseech you, sweet Savior, to wave your banner of victory over our heads. Like the people in the time of Ezra, may we fall face down and worship you. May we place our faces in the dirt and elevate our hands – for you are worthy.

Ezra opened the book in full view of all the people, since he was standing above them all, and as he opened it, all the people stood up. Then Ezra blessed the LORD, the great God, and with their hands uplifted, all the people said, “Amen, Amen!” Then they bowed down and worshiped the LORD with their faces to the ground.” — Nehemiah 8:5-6

We may not see the full image of your beautiful, intricate quilt; but we know you are a good Father. We know that you always deliver on your promises. You are the Savior that was wounded and bled for our transgressions. Our names are etched permanently in the palms of your hands.

We sing – hallelujah when we are still unsure of how you are working. We praise you even when we stand soaked in a thunderstorm. We shout at the top of our lungs in every situation – great are you, God! We pray for our enemies and bless those who curse us because you have defeated death.

You deliver. You show up – and you grant your children favor. May we humble ourselves in your presence, open our hands and expect a blessing because he is who has promised is 100 percent faithful!

Our Creator Speaks Through His Creation

Add a subheadingDo yourself a favor – and immerse yourself in nature. Walk into the woods. Gawk over the intricacy of the countryside. Listen to the birds sing overhead. Feel the cool breeze wash over your skin.

Open your ears to the peaceful sounds of God’s wildlife. Our Creator speaks through his creation; yet, often we are unaware of the soft, gentle words echoed in the forest of his beauty.

Set down your phones. Turn off your WiFi signal. Abandon all the electronic distractions that steal your focus. Sit on a rock in the middle of a rushing stream. Contemplate the Master Artist’s majesty.

Smell in the aroma of freedom all around you. Everything in creation sings in thanksgiving to the One that carefully and thoughtfully designed it.

Your life is a precious gift. Make each day count. Spend your time on what sets your soul on fire. Pray for others in the quiet. Take time to listen to that still small voice that tells you – “This is the way. Walk in it.”

And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, “This is the way, walk in it,” when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left. – Isaiah 30:21

You See Me, Lord

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. – James 1_17.jpgYou see me. You know my name. You catch my tears in your vast hands and charge me to keep going – for you are continuously guiding me with your radiant light.

You say always:

Look up, child. Gaze into the clouds and remember my sacrifice. Remember the blood I shed to bring heaven down to earth.

You are mine. Walk as a warrior. You are not a follower.

You were made to stand out from the herd. Stand tall and move forward.

You illuminate my feet. You are my lamp and the sunlight that brightens the road before me. Breathing deep into the atmosphere of your grace, I take in promise after promise – for these promises from you are rare gems.

I lap up your golden joy for it invigorates my body. I praise you, Maker, because your blessings bubble over – for you are the fountain that endlessly provides. You are Jehovah-jireh my provider!

May my focus be fixed, and my legs encased in the cement of your stability. You hold me together when the world shakes violently with uncertainty. You are my constant, Lord.

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. – James 1:17

I lean into you. You are the source of all my energy. Your promise propels me forward and your grace encourages my weary heart to keep walking the path set me before me.

Walking with your word elevated high, I will shout your name to the heavens – because you are truly great and worthy of all my praise. You saved a wretch like me, hallelujah!

He Who Has Promised is Faithful

You have given a banner to those who fear You, That it may be displayed because of the truth. – Psalm 60_4.jpgYou call us to step in sync to the power of your voice. It’s rhythmic, calming and soothing. Oh, but it takes faith to walk this road. We must lay aside our monstrous fears and focus on your light. In assurance, we go forward in faith – for we know he who called us out onto what we believe are the waters of uncertainty is faithful.

You are the God of promises. You encourage us to breathe in your provision and exhale’s this world’s heartaches. You are the Great Physician that mends our broken chests back together with the words that breathe life into dry bones. You stitch us back together with the glory from the hem of your robe. We are no longer broken pots but sanctified vessels.

You reward those who believe and earnestly seek you. Father, rain down on us the blessings of this beautiful promise. We are seeking you in this darkness on our knees with elevated hands.

And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him. – Hebrews 11:6

May we feel this water fall from heaven. May it soak our souls with anticipation and excitable joy. Your words irrigate our spirits, Lord!

Show us your glory! Ignite a bush in the wilderness. Give us a sign. Speak to us, Beautiful Creator. Charge us in this season and for such a time as this!

We take off our sandals and accept your holy instruction, Abba Father. In obedience, we look up and receive the mantle you’ve spoken over us. It waves as a banner over our heads.

You have given a banner to those who fear You, That it may be displayed because of the truth. – Psalm 60:4

May we fulfill your calling. May we shine your beautiful, radiant light. No longer terrified, may we keep our eyes fixated to the cross and the blood that was shed for us.

We must never concentrate on the flames at our feet; but, gaze in assurance to the promise splashed across the sky.

We are conquerors. We are not alone. We are chosen and adored – children of the light.

We will walk with you, Father in refreshing showers and in violent storms. You’ve promised you will provide, and we cling to that truth.

Hallelujah – God is with us!

Walking from Famine to Plenty

May we step out in faith – and stop trying to order our steps; but, look to the one who made our feet.You lead us to your mountain and make a covenant with your people. We cry from the depths of our souls because the mountain is not just high and mighty – it also has hills and valleys.

We walk from famine to plenty. We are led by your hands from dark places to your pure, incandescent light. You appear like a pillar of fire to guide us. You, God, fill us with your presence and ignite our spirits.

We hear your voice … in the stillness you speak:

Look up precious children. Look to the stars! As I did for Abraham, I will also do for you. I will make a covenant with you. Your name is etched in my hands. I smile and rejoice over you, sweet children of mine!

Oh, how great is the love of the Father!

How precious is your unfailing love, O God! – Psalm 36:7

He refreshes us every morning with his presence. He goes before us and sings over us a new song – the beautiful melody of salvation through grace. May the words of deliverance always be on our lips!

He has made a way for us in the wilderness of our self-reliance. He holds out his hands and asks us to walk boldly.

May we step out in faith and stop trying to order our steps; but, look to the one who made our feet.

He is the Creator who spoke the world into existence.

Great is your faithfulness, Holy God. Great is your provision. We stand in awe and wonder of you.

Precious Savior – you are good, and your mercy endures forever. Hallelujah!

The Rock That Is Higher Than I

Lead me to the Rock that is higher than I.Lead me to the Rock that is higher than I.

Lead me to the rock that is higher than I, for you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the enemy. – Psalm 61: 2,3

Oh God, I cry out so often feeling confused and weary laden. This world tries to snatch the life out of us. It grabs while we are the most vulnerable – introducing doubt, guilt and fear. Our hearts, overwhelmed by external sources, forget to climb the ROCK that stands taller than trees, buildings and even the heavens.

You call out – Remember daughter whose you are!

Consumed in worries, we fret; but you have told us not to worry. You are an ironclad King – fighting the darts being hurled our direction. Our simple selves cannot see the war being waged. You are present every single second of the day. You fight for us – battling for our hearts and our minds.

You say – Breathe it in, sweet child. Breathe in my power. Breathe in my security. Do not be afraid. I have called you to be courageous.

May we walk in your assurance and remember that we are daughters of the Highest King!

To the world our crowns may appear invisible; but, you, God, have assured us that we are cherished and adored.

We enter your gates with heads held high – shining your pure light. We pray that we are able to point others to you.

May our fear never outpower our faith. Earthy obstacles are just that – carnal. May we strive to build up lasting kingdoms.

May our lives be beacons – radiant and ever bright. May we point to you in the night sky and draw lost ships to your safe harbor.

“All for you, Mighty King” may our lives forever sing!

 

Choosing Life & Holding Fast

_Choose life so that you and your children may live and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the LORD is your life._ - Deuteronomy 30_19-20I find you when I’m still – observing creation, basking in the beauty of the luminous sun and singing your praises with elevated hands.

You are the one that makes this heart of mine steady. You light a fire in my soul and line my feet with the purpose to tread this earth fearless.

I look to the mountains dotted with lush, dark foliage unafraid because you are with me.

God, you are my rock. Unmovable, solid and supportive. Help me to seek you every day and fully comprehend the wisdom in your profound words. Your words are the honey that I want to line my lips every single day.

Bestow meaning into your child’s life.

May l look to you and walk with a purpose – shining brightly with a radiant light. Give me your energy to press ahead with fire in my soul. I want to burn for you during the night – and light my lamp with the oil of your provision.

Oh, Lord – I want to choose life. May I always hold fast to your truths – for you are the perfect Father. You instruct me with compassion and encourage me to soar victoriously on your beautiful wings.

“Choose life so that you and your children may live and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him. For the LORD is your life.” – Deuteronomy 30:19-20

You are my life, LORD. I pray every step I take is consistent with your will for my life.

Live and breathe in me today and always.

Your ways are perfect, and I bow to your flawless grace and mercy.

Charging Toward Forest Fires

“If you are in Christ, your scars won't have the last word over your life; His scars will._ -- Sarah WaltonPrecious, merciful Savior – you have healed the stripes that cover every inch of my body. Aching and crying, when I call out to you, you hear me. You lift my face, bowed in complete surrender, and breathe your life altering words over me.

You boldly speak to me: I am here, child, you say. I have always been here. Give it to me – all the worries and ailments that weigh you down. Place them in my hands that were pierced for you. You are my treasure, created for a mighty purpose. I will heal you and empower you.

Your words wash over me like a monsoon of warm water. I can feel your protection, love and devotion. My lips are met with the beautiful kiss of your might. They are lined with the wisdom written in red.

I accept the raw preparation. You are equipping your child for the battle ahead.

Smoke lines the horizon and you have called your special warriors to charge toward the forest fires in the distance. May I strap up my boots, blow my shofar of promise and tread on the hot coals shouting your name. When we cling to your faith, you claim the victory every time.

“And it came to pass at the seventh time, when the priests blew with the trumpets, Joshua said unto the people, Shout; for the LORD hath given you the city.” – Joshua 6:16

You are worthy of all praise.

You are my healer. You are my comfort. You are my provider. You are my vision, God. You tell me to crush fear and trample the lies of the darkness.

Prepare me, God, for your service. Use this earthen vessel is the cry of my heart! Open my eyes that I may see your wonderful commission in the sky.

Blessed be the Lord God!

Scented With The Fresh Fragrance of Spring

You are altogether beautiful, my darling; there is no flaw in you. – Song of Solomon 4_7.jpgI see you, star gazer. Your wonder has not gone unnoticed. Oh, how I adore the marvel in your eyes. You, my sweet child, reflect my splendor. Never lose your sparkle and zest for life. I plan to use you greatly for my Kingdom.

See – I am doing a new thing in you. I am doing a new thing in your life. You are my precious flower – draped in royal purple and scented with the fresh fragrance of spring.

Soar up to the sun in full beauty. Unfold your petals and show the world your radiance encased in godly passion. You are mine. You are safe – and rejoiced over greatly.

Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. – Isaiah 60:1

Shine, sweet child.

I know stepping out in faith seems frightening especially when you feel alone; but you will never be alone. I am right by your side – leading you onward.

Reach for me, child. Reach for my goodness. It is in front of you waiting to be grasped.

Never look back. The sun has set on your old life. You have moved on to the glory ahead of you – painted in the sky in vibrant colors.

You are altogether beautiful, my darling; there is no flaw in you. – Song of Solomon 4:7

Search for me. Seek me – that you may find me. I will clothe you in precious white garments. I will crown your head and speak over you promises that will outlast the earth.

Sparkle, precious flower.