Declared Grace and Mercy {1 Timothy 1:1-2}

textgram_1489616274Paul, an apostle of King Jesus according to the command of God our Saviour and King Jesus our hope, to Timothy, my true child in faith: grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and King Jesus our Lord (1 Tim. 1:1-2, NTE).

Paul is a messenger of God. He doesn’t write Timothy to chit-chat about the latest gossip news (he wouldn’t do that, anyway). The Holy Spirit compelled Paul to write and remind Timothy to which he has been called. Here in 1:1-2, Paul reminds Timothy of the hope we have found in Christ – that Timothy too had come to know on an intimate level.

This hope found in Jesus Christ, we need to know on an intimate level. We need to dig deep into our relationship with God through His Son Jesus Christ, for He is where hope and life is found. Through the Bible and prayer, Jesus is where we need to place our focus.

When our hope is fixed on Jesus Christ, we will not become easily discouraged (see Heb. 12:1-3). In Jesus Christ, the Living God, our souls are built up and “placed on a rock” (see Ps. 40:2), where we and our faith will be protected from the fiercest of storms.

The Place of Grace

“Jesus is the basis for Christian hope, because He is the Mediator of the covenant of grace (on 1 Timothy 1:1, Reformation Study Bible).”

God has true unconditional love for us, and wants to bring us back to Him – to restore the kind of relationship we have with Him. He wants to call us His friends – His people – and not His enemies. This is what led Jesus to the cross. We are given forgiveness and entrance into God’s Kingdom, as we acknowledge what Jesus has done on our behalf and just come to Him.

Pronounced Mercy

In his letters to Timothy, Paul makes sure to pronounce mercy upon Timothy’s weary soul. As a man of God, Timothy needed the reminder of God’s abundant mercy. God is going to take care of us, just as He took special care of Timothy. Even though we could do nothing to earn any of God’s grace, peace, or mercy, God joyfully gives it to His people – those who have chosen to accept His Son Jesus Christ and follow Him.

[Paul] calls down the benefits of God’s covenant, which no one merits but God freely gives. Grace refers generally to all God’s gifts and his loving disposition toward his people. Peace describes the one who is at rest in God.

Mercy in this instance denotes God’s special care of an individual in need. At the outset, Paul thus reminds Timothy that God’s unearnable love and peace will overshadow his servant even in the most difficult of circumstances. Today, this is our promise—as sure as the authority of Scripture (on 1 Timothy 1:2, IVP Commentary).

Our Living Hope

God has chosen to overflow our souls with His grace, peace, and yes – His awesome mercy. This is what we have been welcomed into, as we answer His invitation –

And He said to them, “Follow Me [as My disciples, accepting Me as your Master and Teacher and walking the same path of life that I walk], and I will make you fishers of men (Matthew 4:19, AMP).”

Jesus Christ is our hope. He is the reason we can wake up every morning and celebrate, even when circumstances are more than a little bit on the difficult side. Jesus Christ is our Risen Savior, who paid the price of our sins and has restored our relationship with the Father. We can now walk and talk with our heavenly Father like Enoch did, as he lived on earth.

And Enoch walked [in habitual fellowship] with God; and he was not, for God took him [home with Him] (Genesis 5:24, AMPC).

Until next time,


The Man I Met {You Can Meet Him Too}

Today, I am met with a man. A man who probably isn’t that much different from me. In Luke 5, we meet a man who is covered with leprosy. The disease has ran its course, and reached its capacity.

. . . And, he is sicker than he has ever been.

The Emotions

 It so happened that, as Jesus was in one particular town, there was a man whose body was riddled with a virulent skin disease. When he saw Jesus, he fell on his face. ‘Lord,’ he begged, ‘if you want, you can make me clean.’ – Luke 5:12

Illness brings heavy emotions, difficulty thinking, and crazy sleeping patterns, which admittedly is on top of the “typical” symptoms of our health issue.

While emotions can be beautiful and exhilarating, it can be a heavy burden to carry as well.

The emotions might be worse than the actual medical condition. It sticks to our side like glue, and reminds us of what we do not have. It reminds us of the past we cannot go back to, where we once had our family/friends and a place to call home.

. . . This is what this leper faced, and the reality for many of us on a daily basis. 

The life we once knew is – dissolved. Our new life is confusing. And, rarely understood by those nearest to us. They know not the debilitating emotions we struggle with. Even if it is suffocating, others often do not see the enormous burden we carry.

. . . But there is One who knows exactly what we face, as He is the only One who can carry us through this mess!

The Jesus I Know

I appreciate this man who is known only by his debilitating condition, because he knew the struggle, experienced the heavy emotions, and went running to King Jesus! He ran until he reached Jesus, because he knew Jesus is the answer.

. . . Jesus loved him {and us} and delights in taking care of us {just as He delighted in caring for this broken man}.

This Jesus is the same one who holds my heart. Jesus came, went to the cross, died and rose again to be with me. So, I may have peace with my Father.

My heart is safely held by Jesus, even on my worst day.

. . . He is my Protector, Comforter, and Friend.

This man encountered Jesus, and was changed.

Jesus stretched out his hand and touched him. ‘I do want to,’ he said. ‘Be clean.’ And the skin disease disappeared immediately. – Luke 5:13

Honestly, this is enough to bring me to my knees. The man ran to Jesus, and was wholly welcomed as he was. We are, too.

Our Invitation

Just as Jesus welcomed this man, we are welcomed and invited to come running to Him right now. We don’t have to wait until x, y, and z resolves itself. We can come to Jesus right now.

. . . Jesus invites us to come to Him. Weariness, heavy circumstances, and all, we are invited to simply come to Him.

Bands of Families {{Week 2}}

Hello, my friends!

We are on day 9 of our Gleaning From the Heart of Jesus. If you aren’t joining us for our nine week study, I invite you to join in the fun. God has so much He wants to show us, as we look at Matthew 4-7.

The Scriptures – Matthew 4:21-22 (Not shown – Luke 5:11)

“A little farther up the shore he saw two other brothers, James and John, sitting in a boat with their father, Zebedee, repairing their nets. And he called them to come, too. They immediately followed him, leaving the boat and their father behind. (Mt. 4:21-22, NLT)

They left all they once knew behind.

Jesus called them, and they left everything else behind.

It didn’t matter that they were in a boat with their dad, or were busy working in the mundane.

Jesus called them, and they were ready to leave it all behind – to follow Jesus!

When Jesus invites us to follow Him, empty hands is a pleasure and allows us to have our hands full of Him. (Click-to-Tweet)

In an instant, every aspect of their lives were challenged and changed. Jesus is still calling bands of family members to follow Him together. There is something unique and precious about Jesus inviting families to bond. When we follow Jesus together, as a family, we can offer one another accountability and support we might lack otherwise.

Jesus’ calling began with families, but He doesn’t stop there.

In Psalms, we are reminded of God’s heart for the lonely. He sets the lonely in families (Ps. 68:6). He promises to lead us and love us. As Jesus reaches out, this is exactly what He has done (and continues to do). Jesus is loving us, as He invites us to follow Him.

“Sing to God, sing in praise of his name,
    extol him who rides on the clouds;
    rejoice before him—his name is the Lord.
A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows,
    is God in his holy dwelling.
God sets the lonely in families,
    he leads out the prisoners with singing;
    but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land (Ps. 68:4-6).”

Through Jesus Christ, we are given hope and community. They will help encourage and offer helping hands. (Click-to-Tweet)

The goodness He offers with open hands, we get to experience first hand all He has to offer. We aren’t on the outside looking in, but are in the very front row opening our hands and hearts to grasp whatever He offers (and He has plenty that He wants to give to us – as He calls us “children of God”).

Lord Jesus, there is something special about families following You together! Lead our families straight to You. Thank you for calling me to be Your own – and – part of Your cherished community. Help us to remember what You have given us.

The Invitation {{Week 2}}

The Scriptures –

Matthew 4:18-20 & Mark 10:28-30

“One day as Jesus was walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers—Simon, also called Peter, and Andrew—throwing a net into the water, for they fished for a living. Jesus called out to them, “Come, follow me, and I will show you how to fish for people!” And they left their nets at once and followed him (Mt. 4:18-20, NLT).

Then Peter began to speak up. ‘We’ve given up everything to follow you,’ he said. ‘Yes,’ Jesus replied, ‘and I assure you that everyone who has given up house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or property, for my sake and for the Good News, will receive now in return a hundred times as many houses, brothers, sisters, mothers, children, and property—along with persecution. And in the world to come that person will have eternal life (Mk. 10:28-30).'”

The Voice’s commentary adds weight to the Matthew passage. Listen for a moment, then we will get to today’s devotion.

By now Jesus desires a community around Him, friends and followers who help Him carry this urgent, precious message to people.

It’s so comforting to me, to hear Jesus wanted a community by His side!

Jesus Loves…

Jesus met and loved Simon (Peter) and Andrew. While they were a pair of blood brothers, it was a unique invitation for each man. Jesus saw not only the men, but their hearts.

Jesus invites us to be a part of His community. (Click-to-Tweet)

Each of us have the heart craving for more. We want to escape the mundane, and run for the special encounters that change our lives. As we read Colossians 1:6, we are reminded of the Gospel’s impact on our lives.

“This same Good News that came to you is going out all over the world. It is bearing fruit everywhere by changing lives, just as it changed your lives from the day you first heard and understood the truth about God’s wonderful grace (Col. 1:6).”

Jesus Calls…

As Jesus calls each of us, we are invited to journey toward this set apart way of living. Jesus is inviting us to follow Him on a wild adventure! As much as we want to immediately set out on adventure with King Jesus, it means doing something most are hesitant of – laying everything down. Being a follower (and disciple) of Jesus means – laying every weight, every hindrance, and everything at the feet of Jesus (Phil. 3:8; Heb. 12:1; Lk 14:28).

Being a disciple of Jesus means laying everything at His feet. (Click-to-Tweet)

Our wounded and resurrected Savior invites us to count the cost and join Him. He invites us to be a key part of His community. When we accept His invitation, we are made whole and given more blessings than we could ever ask for or imagine.

Lord Jesus, thank you for this beautiful invitation and the love you have for me. This is an invitation deliberately given to me. It is not by chance. You are intentional. You want me to be a key part in your community. Thank you, Lord!

* * * *

I invite you to join me, as we deliberately study Matthew 4-7 for nine weeks! Click here to order your study journal (Please Note: This is an affiliate link, designed to help you support this blog with any purchase you make).

Announcement: New Bible Study!

Hey friends!

I wanted to let you know about something that is coming up right here at Gracefully Overcoming. I have come out with a Bible Study Journal. It’s new to the public, even though it is something I have had in my possession for a few months. So, I am excited to share with you my hope for this study as well as the content of the study. Bare with me, as I quite possibly enter a rabbit trail of sharing this new Bible study with you all.

The Journal Itself

making the journeyyyThis is an 8 week study on the Psalms of Ascents (120-134)

Each week, we will have:

  • – A Weekly Memory Verse
  • – A Weekly Question
  • – A Day Set Aside for Reflection

    Each Friday (or 5th day), my hope is that we would sit before the Lord poring over what God has shown us all week long. This is the portion of our study, where we will intentionally reflect on our weekly scripture and pray out the things God is showing us.

Plenty of writing space, using a new study method. The goal is to help us to learn what kind of questions to ask, as we study God’s Word

A Lenten Study

For the Lenten season, I want to take us on a journey. Like the Israelites, we have our own spiritual pilgrimage – as we seek out Jesus. For many Christians, those 40 days leading up to Easter is an amazing time of seeking out God – as we prepare our hearts to gain a deeper understanding of God’s character, His undefinable love for us, and the power we find through the Cross and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. For me, this is what Lent represents: It’s a season of preparing my heart and desiring to draw closer to my Savior Jesus! 

The Truth

Despite everything that can pull us away, we can keep seeking Jesus with all of our being. I proposed a challenge to us this Lenten season.

To take aside these next few weeks, and sing the psalms God has given us – for such a journey.

Worship Through the Psalms

In our Bibles, God has gifted us with beautiful songs that help us to cry out to God. I want to see us come together, as a community, and begin to utilize these worship tools we have been given. In this eight week Bible study, we will cover Psalm 120-134.

Meeting Together

As we begin to do our own individual Bible study with this specially designed journal, I want us to “meet” together once a week – to share how God is speaking to us through these worship songs. God will meet us here, as we seek after His face and set off on a new part of our journey – to seek to draw nearer to our Savior and enter His Presence on a more intimate level than ever before.

Won’t you consider joining me?


For those who wish to join me, you can find our schedule below:

Feb. 14 – Psalm 120-121
Feb. 21- Psalm 122-123
Feb. 28 – Psalm 124-125
March 6 – Psalm 126-127
March 13 – Psalm 128-129
March 20 – Psalm 130
March 27 – Psalms 131-132:10
April 3 – Psalms 132:11-18, 133-134

There will at least one post popping in your inbox (if you are on my email list…) each Sunday evening, which will feature a devotion to help us wrap our hearts and minds around the truths God is teaching us – as we learn how to praise Him using His Holy Word to be our guide.

Here is the Amazon link: Making the Journey: Singing Along the Road Towards God