Memorable Posts of 2017

As we prepare the new year and the many possibilities awaiting us, I invite us to reexplore five handpicked articles from Gracefully Overcoming. 

  1. The Most Humbling Worship Offering {Romans 12:1}
  2. The Shepherd Who Protects {From “Summer Psalms ’17” series}
  3. Finding Captivating Love
  4. Alone with God {From our “Meeting the Thessalonians” Study}
  5. Learning About His Love {From our “Meeting the Thessalonians” Study}

While I excluded the “Inspiring Women” post, every one of those posts seemed memorable or life impacting (at the very least). Each delivered some home hitting message, that influenced me as I poured out my soul in words. Here are just three from that meaningful series.

  1. Praise Before Panic
  2. Strength in the Fight {My Testimony}
  3. That One Compliment

There are soo many things that we can learn from. In 2018, my hope is for us to become more of a heartfelt community of Jesus followers and lovers.

My hope is. . .

to share more genuine words – helping us to draw near to the Lord and keep picking up our Bibles, but to weigh my words (Prov. 15:28) as well.

Don’t forget to pick up your eight week journal for our newest study! {It’s only $6.25 on Amazon} Starting January 15th, we will be studying the Timothys and Titus – using a brand new journal for our time together. Every ounce of support we receive, helps keep this blog running. And, we are so thankful for you all!

In Christ,

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Fearing Bad News (Summer ’17)

Tonight’s verse is written out to meet me where I am. This is not to exclude the men who stumble upon my little blog. Remember: God wants to meet each of us where we are.


[She] does not fear bad news; [She] confidently trusts the Lord to care for [her]. [She is] confident and fearless and can face [her] foes triumphantly (Ps. 112:7-8, NLT).

In our lives, we will face difficult days. All of us will, no exemption allowed. We will face difficult days, even more so as people who want to follow our risen Lord Jesus Christ.

In the Gospel of John (ch. 14-15), I am reminded of this message: Because I follow Jesus Christ, I can expect difficult days. Also, I can experience the Holy Spirit and His peace in every season of life.

“If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you (John 14:15-17, ESV)

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid (vv. 27).”

This is why I can experience difficult days, yet not fear those same difficult days (or worse days). Jesus Christ, our Risen Lord, is the One with whom we have allowed our souls to be intertwined with. It is none other than King Jesus. We have allowed Jesus Christ, the King of the world, to enter our souls and to be one with.

For the follower of Jesus Christ, we have joined ourselves with our Creator in an unbreakable bond that lasts for eternity.

I have chosen to follow Jesus Christ, and allow Him into the deepest parts of my life. Although life is unpredictable, I can rest in knowing He doesn’t change. Although my health and relationships may greatly change from one season to the next, my God never changes His mind about me. He has chosen me to be His very own!

What have I to fear? I have Jesus Christ on my side. He is standing with me, giving me the strength to fight my Goliath’s.

While I may battle anxiety and fear, I have nothing to fear with God on my stand. Through this special relationship, I know Him and that He continues to hold me close through life’s difficulties.

This world may shake me to my core, but it cannot take away my faith in Jesus Christ. My foundation in Jesus Christ is essential. When I allow my life to be built upon Jesus Christ, I will be never find myself in “the wrong place” like I will – when I allow my choices and relationships to be built upon my own heart’s desires that often lead me astray.

In Christ’s grace I stand,

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Through Him we also have access by faith into this [remarkable state of] grace in which we [firmly and safely and securely] stand (Rom. 5:2a, AMP).

A Day at the Hospital {The Prayer Offering}

Last night, I wrote about the goal in trials. My goal, during hard times, is to remember I am a daughter of the Most High God and allow this crucial identity to shape my thoughts, words, and actions.

Today, I was given the opportunity to put this into practice. I had an appointment at the county hospital. Things went right. Things went wrong. But, the biggest achievement? It was simply remaining as quiet as possible, as Trigeminal Neuralgia talked to Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome.

As long as I stay quieter on the rough days, I can avoid saying things that might hurt, rather than help, someone. My ability to control the kind of words – becomes harder, as the symptoms become more intense. The temptation to use hurtful words is definitely there.

The Heart-Felt Prayer

Today was a day of praying for God’s peace and presence. In my life, I have little control over how I feel on a given day (with the exception of my attitude).

What I can do is control how I respond to trials. So I responded, by “trying” to stay quiet. This was both easy and difficult. It was easy, until the moment of leaving the hospital to go home. Then, the overwhelming symptoms and impatience kicked into gear.

The good news is – I survived my long hospital day. I am preparing to have surgery in about 1.5 weeks. We had appointments scheduled for today and Friday, but by God’s grace and faithful prayers of others – I was able to get it all done today.

What We Need

The truth is. . . We need to pray over our souls for His peace and presence. This is what we need more than anything.

We can survive many things, but only with Jesus Christ leading the way. I don’t know about you, but nothing soothes my anxiety quite like the peace and presence of our great Savior, King Jesus, can.

If you are finding yourself in a rough spot tonight, begin praying over your souls for His peace and presence to overwhelm you. When we are overwhelmed by God, His presence, and unimaginable peace, we are in the best place possible to overcome our trials. They will not overcome us, but we will be able to overwhelm them with our relationship with God through Jesus Christ.

Lord Jesus, overwhelm our souls with Your peace and presence. We live in a difficult world. You remind us in John 16:33 that we will face troubles in this life, but You offer to us a peace that is nothing like this world’s. Overwhelm us with Your peace and presence. Thank You, Lord! Amen.

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs, and don’t forget to thank him for his answers. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus (Phil. 4:6-7, TLB).

I have told you all this so that you will have peace of heart and mind. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows; but cheer up, for I have overcome the world (John 16:33).

Until next time,

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Confidence in God {{Week 6}}

Welcome to today’s blog and our Gleaning From the Heart of Jesus study! Today, we will be discussing another important topic: prayer. Prayer is the key unlocking the communication in our relationship with God through Jesus.

As I study and grow, I am reminded of how much confidence we can have in our beloved Savior. Oh, how it would change our lives – if we lived exactly what we believe… Let’s remember our true Hope! Break out those journals and your Bible. If you don’t have either nearby, join us anyway!

The Scriptures – Matthew 6:7-8; Psalm 38:9-10

When you pray, do not keep talking on and on. That is what ungodly people do. They think they will be heard because they talk a lot. Do not be like them. Your Father knows what you need even before you ask him (Matthew 6:7-8, NIrV).

Lord, everything I really want is clearly known to you. You always hear me when I sigh. My heart pounds, and my strength is gone. My eyes can hardly see (Psalm 38:9-10)

Devotion

God knows exactly what I need.  God is my Creator, and fully acquainted with me and all my needs. He is my good good Father. We should be able to live out our lives with such confidence. Because we know who God truly is…

This is the God we serve!

For the Lord will be your confidence… (Proverbs 3:26a, NASB)

Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need (Hebrews 4:16).

We can have full confidence in God and His provisions. Not only does He know about our needs, He is fully equipped to meet all of our needs. We don’t need to overtalk, in hopes of God hearing us. We don’t have to hope that we will pray loud enough, that God will hear us. We can confidently know “God does hear me when I pray”. We can have that kind of assurance in our prayer lives!

We can live like we believe! This ought to cause us to live our lives differently.

Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully (1 Peter 5:7, AMPC).

In our prayers, this translates as actually trusting God and knowing He cares deeply for us. Deep enough to hear our prayers. Deep enough to act on our behalf.

Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see (Hebrews 11:1, NLT).

Lord God, You listen when I speak. Father, I am so used to people not listening to me when I talk. Somewhere along the way, I have allowed that to transfer over into my relationship with You – when You listen better than anyone else ever could. Even though I overtalk to convince others to listen, I don’t have to ever do that in my relationship with You. You are so very good to me. You stay interested in me and what I have to say. You stay fully captivated and ready to save me every single day no matter what. You fully pursue me. Thank You, Lord. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

To My Weary Friend [[The Shepherd]]

Weary one,

Have you found the words of Psalm 28:9 yet?

Where the psalmist unleashes a barrel of truth… That changes everything.

Where Jesus meets you right where you are, no matter how messy or out-of-sorts your life seems.

He promises to meet us, lead us on, to carry us (if we will let Him), and be our everything.

… Only it isn’t a limited time offer…

It’s for all eternity. But, don’t delay! You are missing sooo much…

See, Jesus is the real deal!

And, He meets us.

Savior this truth, friends!

 

“Lead them like a shepherd, and carry them in your arms forever (Psalms 28:9).”

 

This message, designed for Israel, God’s treasure, is extended to us as well.

… Because Jesus came…

… Because Jesus broke down the barrier from us to Him and us to them…

He wants to save us!

He wants to call us His treasure.

He wants to lead us.

He wants to be our lifelong Shepherd.

He wants to carry us forever.

We don’t have to do life all on our own. We may feel like that is our only option, but I am telling you right now friend that we have another option. A much better option.

Jesus Christ.

He came for YOU! That’s the amazing depth of God’s love for you, that He would leave Heaven’s glory, splendor, and good things… That He would come. There is ONE thing He is missing and longing for..  And, it’s you. It’s me. He wants a love relationship with us. He wants THIS to become our reality.

He wants to be our Good Shepherd, as our reality to live by. Will you allow Him to? He is far more willing than you could ever imagine. Allow Him to step into your mess, your brokenness, and all that consumes your life. He just wants you to let Him in. What is stopping you from inviting Jesus into your heart and life?