Love Based Law – Part 2 {POTF}

In order to have the proper lens to view the Bible and God’s law (see yesterday’s post), we need to remember who God is. He is the loving Father to those who choose to believe and follow His Son Jesus Christ.

But to all who did receive him, he gave them the right to be children of God, to those who believe in his name, who were born, not of natural descent, or of the will of the flesh, or of the will of man, but of God (John 1:12-13, CSB).

Allow this truth to soak in your mind. God wants to be your heavenly Father! He wants to guide you on the right path, to help you avoid pitfalls and heartache.

But we know that the law is good, provided one uses it legitimately (1 Timothy 1:8). 

Just an earthly father typically sets up rules to protect his children, our heavenly Father is very intent on protecting us and leading His children. Thus, we are given the law.

Our Relationship with God

Furthermore, we had human fathers discipline us, and we respected them. Shouldn’t we submit even more to the Father of spirits and live? (Hebrews 12:9)

In Hebrews 12, we learn that – God wants to protect us and lead us into His loving arms, but it require discipline too. Discipline is hard, but every relationship is best operated with proper boundaries in place. Without boundaries in place, things can get messy and destructive.

God sets up rules, out of His love for His children. From the moment we choose to believe and follow Jesus Christ, we have become a part of God’s family. We are not strangers or His enemies, but given a beautifully intimate relationship. This is the reality for believers of Jesus Christ! We have gone from enemies of God to being His beloved children.

Our great God will fight to protect this relationship, but will we?

Called His Children

This new beautiful relationship, where we are called God’s children – cost greatly. Jesus Christ suffered, died, and rose again to save us. Let’s cherish this relationship and enjoy His boundaries.

This is why we can view the law through this lens of God’s role as our Abba Father. Everything is done out of absolute, amazing, breath taking, love that our great God has for us!


The Lord reminds us of our need to deny ourselves, as we continue to follow Him. He reminds us of the great price He paid for us. He chose us. Despite all of our sin, He still chose us! Are you ready to follow Jesus more readily, seeing Him as your Father?

Remember the beauty of Galatians 2:20 –

I have been crucified with Christ, and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God,who loved me and gave himself for me.


The Bible shows us our desperate need for seriously Good News! Our Lord Jesus Christ is our Savior, and He is the One who makes us right with our great God! He sets us in a beautiful place of grace, mercy, and peace (1:2), but He also shows us how to live abundantly!

Running to Jesus,

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Offering Peace Like Jesus {Inspiring Women}

Hi friends! For the months of May/June, we will be using a reading plan given to us by Sweet to the Soul Ministries. Feel free to stroll through their Facebook page and blog. They even have a journaling kit and Bible study for this month’s plan

Don’t quarrel with anyone. Be at peace with everyone, just as much as possible (Romans 12:18; TLB).

Peace is one of the amazing qualities of an inspiring woman. She can live at peace with those around her, and even offer this gift in difficult relationships.

We can be tempted to believe we have every reason to be angry versus peaceable, especially if we follow the world’s principles for relationships, but God shows us a different and better way. Come, let’s learn the better way!

Defining Peace

In Matthew 5, we are taught a lot about our need for peace with God and others. What is our definition of peace?  Peace is harmonious and free of rage. While we cannot control how others respond to us, we can choose to respond with the gift of peace.

There are times in our relationships, where people purposely set out to push our buttons. They know how to bring out the worst in us, but Jesus Christ is far greater than these moments. As a Christian, a follower of Jesus Christ, our way of working through relationship difficulties can be different – when we choose obedience and allow Christ to step into our messes.

Loving the Unlovable

In Matthew 5:43-48, we are taught to love like Jesus. Even called to love people who truly hate us. This can only be explained by the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We were once enemies of God, and now are called His beloved – His friends and those who are dearly loved by the King of Kings. Because God’s love knows no bounds. He went great limits to declare His love!

God sent His Son Jesus Christ to take our punishment, and show us His sheer grace. Our relationship with Him is restored, which is something we can seek in earthly relationships too. God can help us!

If we think loving others doesn’t make sense, how does it look to know you are deeply loved by God regardless of what you have done? He has come to rescue you and to be with you. Come to Jesus, friend!

His Peacemakers

We can become peacemakers, who act like their Abba Daddy! Our great God is the One who enables us to seek peace in our difficult relationships. Others might not respond as we hope, but God is glorified through it. Not only is He glorified, He blesses us for choosing His way.

God blesses those who work for peace, for they will be called the children of God (Mt. 5:9, NLT).

In our peace-giving, we can become closer to our heavenly Father and see how much He has endured for our sake. May we take on the opportunity to deepen our faith in Jesus Christ and influence others through how we cultivate peace.

Communing with the Father {{Week 1}}

Welcome to our first session of Gleaning From The Heart of Jesus! This is going to be 9 weeks of shear amazingness! I guarantee you, that your relationship with Jesus Christ – will be strengthened, challenged, stretched, and grown. There is no way that we can approach a study like this one, and not come out of this study – changed. transformed. closer to Jesus than we were before. (The same is true for our Ephesians and Isaiah 40 studies, that we focused on this summer)

You’re Invited!

I want to invite you to get your hands on the Gracefully Overcoming *official* journal, if you haven’t done so yet. We will be using our journals, throughout the study! Open up your journal to day 1. We will be looking at Matt. 4:1-4; Heb. 4:15; Mark 1:35.

 Led Out by the Holy Spirit

There is such a force of life, as I read Matthew 4:1. Jesus is led out by the Spirit of God. Jesus does not go out on His own, but He is seeking after the will of the Father. I have been thinking about the act of communing with God. 

Communing with the Father

As I picture, Jesus beginning this lonely walk to the wilderness. I think, it was a time of absolute community and wholeness. Jesus is going to the wilderness, where He will have an intense 40 days (no doubt about that!), but look at how He is approaching the wilderness. Hand-in-hand (or shoulder-and-shoulder with the awesome Father). Jesus is not going out on His own. This part of the passage just awakens a passion in me to commune with my heavenly Father.

Strengthened

As Jesus makes this walk to the wilderness, by the Holy Spirit, there is some serious strengthening going on.

Jesus faced an intense experience and conquered the enemy, because of the strength the Father provided!

God wants to give us that same kind of strength, my friends! God wants to strengthen and equip us, for every single thing we face in our lives (see 2 Peter 1:3). God’s Word confirms this truth, that He wants to equip and strengthen us.

We don’t have to go through temptations on our own.

We need to allow the Father to equip us with His strength, as we spend time with Him!

We don’t have to go through temptations on our own. We have Jesus! (Click-to-Tweet)

What kind of quality time are we spending with our heavenly Father? This is a hard question to answer, but we are given hope as we realize the place we are in. Because we can grow in our quiet time with the Lord.

Victory!

Jesus’ temptations were a direct attack on Him, by the Devil. See, the Devil knew who Jesus was. He already knew Jesus was, is, and will always be the very Son of God. The Devil wanted to poke at His identity. If the Devil could get Jesus to question His identity, then, he had him.

If the Devil can get us to question our identity in Christ (as heirs and children of God), then we are right where he wants us.

But, we can be victorous over our enemy!

Jesus Christ has overcome death, and defeated the Devil. Jesus Christ has proved who He is (and will always be). (Click-to-Tweet)

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The Pruning Effect in Trials

Last Thursday, I entered a new phase of a struggle. I wasn’t prepared for the long lasting aspect of it. It is easier to see the struggle in front of me and wish it away, than for me to take the time, pray, and realize that God may want to use the struggle to build up something within me through His Holy Spirit.

In Scripture, we are reminded that we need to be ‘pruned’. From my understanding – in gardening, you prune the bad stuff away – so that the good stuff can grow. It would be my assumption that “the pruning effect” is what allows us to grow more freely and faster. It not only produces what we can call “fruit” (the good stuff), but allows the fruit to have the room to increase in abundance and speed. When we have a trial in our lives, we often don’t think of these things. I know that, my focus hasn’t been on the outcome of such a struggle. My focus has been on the struggle, itself. Maybe, you find yourself there with me today.

Through this struggle, I have been learning how much I need to trust my Savior Jesus. It is easy to say one thing, but trials are the evaluation of such words. Do we mean it when we say, “Lord, you are all I need” or “Lord, I trust and hold onto you as my source of strength”?

Though our struggles differ from each other, this truth remains: “God is loyal forever and ever. He made the earth, and it still stands (Psalm 119:90).” While we continue to work out our salvation and learn to trust in Jesus as our Savior and Lord over every aspect of our lives, we need to realize God is loyal and does hold us by the hand. Our perspective of trials can go two ways: (A) we drag our feet and complain along the way (B) humbly receive every profitable thing we can glean from our time of trial.

While trials are the last thing any one of us desire to be present in our lives, we need to choose how we respond. We need to choose to respond, by using it as an opportunity to saturate our lives with Jesus Christ.

As I shared this past week I have endured a struggle, it has been a time where I am limited in what I can physically do. One aspect of my life that instantly clicked was running to God. In some way, I have been seeking His face through my days. We need to become a people who intensely pursue the Living God, who first pursued us, despite the circumstances of our lives.

‘Though thus deeply afflicted, though without comfort or peace, yet I do, I will, maintain allegiance to thee and thy law. The doctrine is that distress, poverty, sorrow, penury, and rags – the most abject circumstances of life – will not turn away a true child of God from obeying and serving him. True religion will abide all these tests.’ – Albert Barnes

5.3.15 – God Suffers, Too

God provides everything we need – the moment we need it. While sharing my heart yesterday, I mentioned the difficulty of the road I was standing on. The heavy weakness upon my body. While there is still there, varying in intensity, God allowed me to come across the most comforting quote.

“I don’t know how He does it, but I know that when I’m sick, God’s sad,
and I know that when I’m miserable, God suffers along with me.
And I know that in all my sickness, He’ll make my bed
because His name is goodness and His name is mercy.”
– The Attributes of God, Volume 1 by A.W. Tozer

Reading this quote blew me away. Just knowing God is suffering along with me. He willingly endured (and continues to endure) my suffering. It’s not a burden I am stuck carrying on my own. My Savior wants to be my ever-present Hope. I am not alone in my struggle. I am not without the ultimate Support whose name is Jesus. While I face not-so-good days, I know this is not the end. I have a Hope that doesn’t end when I have bad days health-wise. God will continue to strength and comfort me, just as much in the bad days as in the good days.