Holy Spirit Infused Relationships {VOTD}

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law (Gal. 5:22-23, NKJV).

If we were to be honest with each other, we could say relationships are not easy. Sometimes, they can be the hardest aspect of our lives. Everything can be going along fairly well one day, until we have a conversation. A conversation we could spend years trying to forgive ourselves for. Or maybe, just a conversation that might wreck our day.

Lack of Fruit

In Romans 6:21, we are reminded that our sinful nature won’t produce good results. “But what good did you receive from the things you did? All you have to show for them is your shame, and they lead to death.”

We all can testify with our own stories of experiences, that. . . we don’t receive good things from our shame. Our shame filled words or actions have costed us something.

These kind of broken hearted relationships and conversations haven’t produced things like kindness, self control, or goodness.

We have good news. God can produce in our lives these very good things we crave. What we lack, God alone can provide!

God Directed

The Holy Spirit is in full control, able to direct our hearts, and give us these good gifts.

Even if these things aren’t on our “to do” list, it is on our great God’s. Because even in the worst of circumstances, God is always filled with the fruit of the Spirit in overwhelming quantities. These are very essence of who God is.

Loving Like Our King

Through being connected, we become more like Him. While it isn’t an instant process, it is surely one worth praying and waiting for. Let’s draw nearer to the Lord through opening our Bible, praying for our relationships, and seek more of Him.

As Christians we aren’t perfect, but the God we serve is! We are clothed in His righteousness, as we accept what our Savior Jesus has done for us. We are forever changed!

Through our Savior Jesus Christ, we “belong to Him who was raised from the dead in order that we may bear fruit for God (7:4).”

Friends, we have been radically changed by our gracious God who has given up everything for us. He wants to help us in our relationships. Let’s give Him access to these sometimes hard places.

. . . “For those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit have their minds set on the things of the Spirit (8:5).”

The Difference Maker

The difference in our relationships doesn’t come from us, but the One we have fixed our eyes upon. Through God and His Holy Spirit, our relationships can be different. Because of our great Savior, we can see a radical difference (see Galatians 5).

Because of Jesus, we can love those He has placed in our lives. Remember, “we love because He first loved us (1 John 4:19).”

How has the Holy Spirit helped you in your conversations and relationships?


Image by Ben Rosett.


December Goals

It is a little late, but “better late than never”.

Do {Daily}

  • Continue to work on choosing allergy free vegetarian dishes.
  • Exercise, while listening to limitations.
  • Keep reading and studying the Word of God (Bible).
  • Welcome silence, to create a prayerful environment.


This month, my heart’s goal is set on Titus. I need to learn and apply Titus 2:5.

In the book of Titus, we are reminded of God’s greatness and how He wants us to live out our faith in our lives (see 2:3-5).

For this month, I want to lean on the Lord and learn how to serve within the walls of my family’s home. This is done as I keep up on housework (dishes, laundry, picking up, decluttering) – trying to give God my best in this area.

“These older women must train the younger women to love their husbands and their children, to live wisely and be pure, to work in their homes, to do good, and to be submissive to their husbands. Then they will not bring shame on the word of God (Titus 2:4-5, NLT).”


My hope is to keep reading each day. While I have many books to choose from, I am going to limit my goal to a few specific books.

  • In the Middle of the Mess (Sheila Walsh)
  • Loved Baby (Sarah Philpott)
  • Connected (Erin Davis)

Also, I want to keep reading and soaking up the truths from the book of Psalms.


If there was one word for this month, it would be “effective”. I want my life to count. Through eating better, exercising, and trying to stay focused on the Lord by living out His Word, I want to make a difference in my health, family, and life.

Dear friend, what are some of the things you hope to focus on doing or being for the month of December?

Image by Tim Gouw.

In Christ,


Kids’ Visual Study Bible (BookLook)

Visual BibleMy friends, the greatest gift we can give to our kids is – the Word of God.

As we sit and share our hearts for Jesus, we are giving them a special gift. Let’s present Jesus to them through our words and a Bible of their very own. Something that will help them learn about our great God and His love for them.

The Treasure –

The NIV Kids’ Visual Study Bible: Explore the Story of the Bible—People, Places, and History is an amazing Bible. One of my favorite aspect of this Bible is – the fact that it is a study Bible. In the margins, we can find insight we might otherwise miss. Plus: This Bible is colorful; this is where we find beautiful photographs woven into the Bible – which reminds us of God’s handiwork. There are over 700 photographs in this special Bible!

This is a special gift, which will allow our children to open the wonder of God’s Word – and discover who He is – for themselves. The goal of this Bible is to present our Lord Jesus Christ and His truths to the children in our lives.

My Concluding Thoughts –

I absolutely love this Bible. I am looking forward to reading it with my niece, but also to have for myself. The study notes, in particular, are a needed thing, because sometimes we just need a little (or a lot) of help learning to understand what God is teaching us through His Word – the Bible. God will definitely use this Bible to encourage many, to keep drawing near to Him.

Friends, I am excited about the possibilities. This Bible with added features can help our children become closer to the Lord. I am thankful for this Bible and the opportunity to review it. I am so excited to see how the NIV Kids’ Visual Study Bible will encourage my niece in her own relationship with the Lord.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through BookLook’s blogger review program, in exchange for a honest review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.


Genesis 27-29; Psalms 51-52

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Assigned Reading: Genesis 27-29; Psalms 51-52

Psalms –

Chapter 51 – The psalmist cried out for God’s great mercy, because he was faced with his sin. When we sin against God, there is nowhere to hide from the sin or its consequences, or from God. We need to become like the psalmist who runs to God, and confesses his sin. Not only does he rely on God’s mercy, he prays fervently for a big change to take place in his heart.

Create in me a clean heart, O God; restore within me a sense of being brand new. Do not throw me far away from Your presence, and do not remove Your Holy Spirit from me. Give back to me the deep delight of being saved by You; let Your willing Spirit sustain me (vv. 10-12, VOICE).

What sacrifice I can offer You is my broken spirit because a broken spirit, O God, a heart that honestly regrets the past, You won’t detest (vv. 17)

Chapter 52 – God’s unfailing love is what truly lasts. His love outshines every good and bad deed we will see on this earth. Not only is His love unfailing, we are reminded how perverse the heart can become, seeking only to be evil. While we could be like these wicked people, we have something they don’t – Someone they refuse: Jesus Christ, our Shield and the One True God. He gives us Himself, and shows us what His love is really like. And His love changes us completely, as we begin to enjoy sweet fellowship with King Jesus.

Genesis –

Chapter 27

Jacob stole Esau’s blessing, and this was a crafty decision that was not only premeditated but also one with many consequences. It would take years for reconciliation to occur between Jacob and Esau. The moment Jacob stole Esau’s blessing, he was on the run. Today, there are many families who face divisions like this. As a result of a decision, one of betrayal, there is a great separation between family members. The fleshly desires are not worth the devastating effect it has on families and other relationships.

Chapter 28

While Jacob deceived his father, Isaac still spoke tenderly to him and guided him in the direction he should go. Not only did Isaac guide Jacob, more importantly God spoke directly to Jacob and told him of his future. This would offer much encouragement to a weary soul, pondering his fate.

 I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you (28:15, NIV).

Chapter 29 –

Rachel was a shepherdess. She carried the important task of caring for her father’s sheep. As we think about Rachel and her particular responsibility, we are reminded of her importance. Without due diligence, she might lose some of her sheep. I am reminded of how God calls some of His daughters to be a shepherdess. We are called to care for God’s people, giving them much attention, and loving them diligently (see 1 Peter 5). It is an important job. We know it’s important to note Rachel’s work responsibility, because it is mentioned in God’s precious Word!



Genesis 22-24; Psalms 46-47

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Assigned Reading: Genesis 22-24; Psalms 46-47

Psalms –

Chapter 46: Where do we find our refuge – our strength? In Job 12, we are reminded of this essential truth –

To God belongs wisdom and power; counsel and understanding are His… To Him belong strength and insight; both deceived and deceiver are His (Job 12:13, 16).

The psalmist knew where he could find some really good strength. The kind that keeps one going and seeking God – no matter how many trials came their way. I want this kind of faith, where it doesn’t matter what happens – because they chose to trust the Lord Almighty and did not waver from faith to utter fear of what may come. The Lord, our God, is great, and we can know Him – experience Him – on an incredibly intimate level. Our strength and refuge comes solely through trusting in the Lord God Almighty and coming to know His Son Jesus Christ!

Chapter 47: As we approach our new president’s inauguration, we are reminded that earthly kings and presidents are no match for God. The God we serve reminds us that every single one of us belong to Him, and His power is more important than anything else. God is over all. God is soo worthy of all our praise and devotion. God raises up leaders, and tears them down. When nations disassemble, God is still the reigning champion of the world. Jesus Christ is our King!

He chose our inheritance for us, the pride of Jacob, whom he loved… Sing praises to God, sing praises; sing praises to our King, sing praises (Psalms 47:4, 6).

Genesis –

Abraham was tested, to see where his allegiance was: Did Abraham have a bigger love for his son Isaac or God? This would be a difficult thing, for any of us, but especially so for Abraham – knowing how many years they (Abraham and Sarah) waited to have a child of their own. This was quite possibly the most difficult worship session and act of obedience that Abraham would have faced in his lifetime.

Abraham’s faith was abounding, and grew even with this act of giving his son, Isaac, to God. Abraham showed he withheld nothing in his life from God – our heavenly Father.

In our own lives, what are we withholding from our relationship with God through Jesus Christ?

Our faith is determined by what we are willing to give God. When His strong, yet small with our heavy list of earthly distractions, voice calls us to give Him something, we learn much by our willingness to surrender to God. Perhaps, the Holy Spirit is prompting us to visit our neighbor or to go on a mission trip. We learn a lot about our faith in Jesus Christ, in these moments.

As I listen to these chapters, we learn about a man of integrity. While he slipped and fell in his decisions, he did not take advantage of others. He willfully paid the asking price for a place to bury his beloved wife – Sarah. Westley’s notes show us the heart of both men in chapter 23.

The land is worth four hundred shekels of silver — About fifty pounds of our money, but what is that between me and thee? – He would rather oblige his friend than have so much money.John Wesley (on verse 15)

Abraham’s integrity passed down to how he chose a wife for Isaac. Here is where we find the concept of courting. Abraham’s servant became his hands and feet, to find a suitable wife for Isaac. This would a woman who would have had a similar background as Isaac – in terms of their faith in the One True God.

Abraham, his father, initiated the search of finding a wife for his son. It wasn’t that Isaac would have been unwise in his decision. Rather than being a trait of tradition, such a courtship reflected Abraham’s deep love for his son – Isaac

This courtship is even a picture of how God leads us to His Son Jesus Christ out of His abundance of love for us!

At the time, Isaac was forty years old when he married Rebekah and he loved her deeply. Abraham’s legacy would impact Isaac and the way he lived.

Isaac was forty years old when he married Rebekah daughter of Bethuel the Aramean from Paddan Aram and sister of Laban the Aramean (Genesis 25:20).

What a joyous moment this must have been. Isaac was alone for forty years, and now has met his wife. The one he would live with and do life with, as they worshiped God.

Isaac brought her into the tent of his mother Sarah, and he married Rebekah. So she became his wife, and he loved her; and Isaac was comforted after his mother’s death (Genesis 24:67).