Transforming Truths {{POTF}}

Friends,

Welcome to Pressing On Toward Faithfulness! This is an eight week study focused on going through the books of Titus and 1-2 Timothy in a slower pace, which will allow us to catch glimpses of these important truths and dwell on them.

As we dwell on these important God given truths, we are given the opportunity to see what they mean for our lives.

Memory Verse –

Each week, my hope is to give us a memory verse. Even if you are like me and aren’t sure you can memorize a Scripture, let’s jot down these verses on an index card and make them an important part of our day. As we focus on these verses and what they mean for us, God will change us through this process.

Use Your Personal Bible –

For this week, my goal is to focus on Titus 2:1. However. . . In order to grasp the depth and significance of this verse, let’s also look at verse 8. I encourage you to read, study, and focus upon this verse (or these verses) using your own personal Bible. Ideally, I will read, meditate (look upon and focus intently), and cherish these truths using the wording given through my personal Bible. But for today’s post, I am using a clearer way of wording (a different translation, but it’s still fully God’s Word).

There are many new translations being added to websites, so my goal in this study (and future) is – to not share lightly using other translations. I want to make sure what I share is biblically sound and correct.

Here we go!

Let’s jump into this week’s memory verse. It is better to start late than to call it quits. God’s Word is far too important to hold onto an “all or nothing” approach, when it comes to ingesting the Words of Life we desperately need to hear.

But you are to proclaim things consistent with sound teaching (Titus 2:1, CSB).

Your message is to be sound beyond reproach, so that any opponent will be ashamed, because he doesn’t have anything bad to say about us (Titus 2:8).

Our Teachings –

Friends, we need to consider what we are teaching others. Now you might be thinking, “Me?! But, I am not a pastor or even a teacher. . .”

Each day, our lives can reveal the teachings of Christ and His transformative work in our lives. In Titus 2:1-8, we are urged to live the beauty of the Gospel each day. In our relationships, behavior, and circumstances, we can impact lives. Even if we aren’t serving outside the home, we are deeply impacting lives and sharing the Gospel.

Friends, how closely is your beliefs lining up with the teachings of the Bible?

When we live out our beliefs, it changes lives. Choosing to place our faith in our Lord Jesus Christ will radically change our lives, and one of the results is – others will see how we are being changed from the inside – out. As we are changed and practice what we “preach,” our enemies will not be able to say anything bad about us.

In this world, we will come across many people who absolutely hate us for one thing or another. Even so, I have witnessed how the Lord changes hearts. He can turn absolute enemies into the best of friends. This is referred to as the “ministry of reconciliation (see 2 Cor. 5:16-21),” and one of the most beautiful gifts we are given by our Lord. This is the beautiful of the Gospel. We can go from God’s enemies to being called His sons and daughters!

Until next time,

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31 Proverbs to Light Your Path {Blogging-For-Books}

31 ProverbsIt’s no secret that Liz Curtis Higgs is one of my favorite Bible study teachers. I have reviewed several of her books, including her last devotional – which is much like this one.

Today, I am here today to joyfully share with you her new book. 31 Proverbs to Light Your Path is a devotional that meets us where we are, and walks us through specific proverbs found in the Bible.. The Lord has much to share with us, as we draw near.

We are invited into beautiful conversations about God’s life altering truths and their power. While we are met with God’s truth and learn what it looks like to apply them in our lives, we are given a special section at the end of each devotion – that might make the most difference in applying the devotional truths immediately.

In “One Minute, One Step,” we are urged to take the time to remember these special God-given truths and consider what it means for our own lives. It is by God’s absolute grace that we can hear His truths and allow the Lord to change our lives through them.

There are 31 Proverbs placed in this book that can radically change our lives. And, friend? It is simply the beginning. Jesus has so much He wants to share us, as we sit here in community with Him and each other. Let’s seek out our sweet Lord and take this gift we have been given.

My Story –

One night a few weeks ago, I found myself awake in an insomnia moment. After realizing “Okay, I am not getting to sleep,” I finally got up and grabbed my reviewer’s copy of this God initiated book and just kept reading.

I couldn’t stop, and truthfully I didn’t want to. The more I read, the more the Lord spoke to me – filling my soul with His truth!

As I continued to read, the sweetness of the Lord and His comfort washed over me. I just sat and continued reading as one day turned into seven days, and so on. That night, I made many notes, highlights, and even followed up on a specific urging the Lord placed on my spirit.

Friends, the Lord can use this book to speak to us. As we are being changed by the truths and our relationship with our great God through His Son Jesus Christ, He will change others. Our job is simply to be obedient.

For a long time, it was hard for me to read the Proverbs – because there are many transformative truths (“How do I remember them all?”). All we have to do is begin with one proverb, and start there.

Let’s allow Liz Curtis Higgs, to be our friend who shows us how the Lord is helping her apply His truths.

God can definitely use this devotional to speak to His people. Friends, let’s meet up, share our brokenness, and open up our hearts to His truth. The Lord will meet us wherever we are.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the “Blogging for Books” book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive 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.

That One Compliment {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.

In high school, a teacher called me something that I have never forgotten. It was one of the greatest compliments I could ever receive in my life back then. I was awkward, detail obseessed, and a passionate worker when solo. Yet, all that stood out was one word – conscientious.

The mind of the prudent is ever getting knowledge, and the ear of the wise is ever seeking (inquiring for and craving) knowledge (Proverbs 18:15, AMPC).

Conscientious. It continues to be something I think on, and encourages me in my endeavors. I want to work well. While I can work well with giving less, I want to become a woman of God who strives to give Him her best.

As women seeking to inspire, let’s become prudent women who love Jesus and continue to pursue Him.

As women who understand what is right, we need to make knowledge of God and His Word our highest priority. For the conscientious woman, she will want to not only gain the knowledge but seek to apply it to her life as well.

Nearly three years ago, we learned the value of prudence. For the God fearing, we need be careful, not careless, in order to avoid pitfalls.  Our relationship with God through Jesus Christ is worthy of all required efforts to live a lifestyle – where our decisions are significant; we know and do “what would glorify God,” and have a lifestyle where “God would be honored.”

Those who do what is right, will seek to better themselves. They will look to the Proverbs and other books of the Bible to learn and grow in their relationship with our risen Lord.

While each had their failures as they were human, Abigail and David were seen as a couple who both displayed prudence before they got together.

  • Abigail was a prudent woman who was quick to soften the conflict, possible disaster against her imprudent husband.
  • David was seen as prudent in words long before his reign as king. It was right up there, with his musical capabilities.

Friends, let’s become prudent people. This characteristic will affect not only our own lives, but the lives of others around us. It can become tempting to consider and overwhelm ourselves with all the changes we need to make, but let us focus solely on the most important change we need to make – which is to have a heart desire to listen to and act upon God’s instructions for our lives.

We need a heart’s desire for Jesus, friends.

It has been several years ago since I received my conscientious compliment, but I hold it dear to this very day.

I want to be known as the girl who loves Jesus and gives Him her best. That is a legacy worth having!

In Christ,

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No Perfect Relationship {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.

Following Jesus Christ and receiving His love should change our interactions with others, but especially with fellow believers. As a part of God’s Church, let’s consider how we respond to one another.

If you’ve gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the Spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care— then do me a favor: Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends (Phil. 2:1-2, MSG).

This Scripture reminds us that we are being changed. God reminds us that a heart transformation is the result of our meeting and walking with Jesus Christ. We are entering our new life, and these are key things to expect in our relationships with other Jesus-lovers-and-followers.

  • Agreeing with other believers.
  • Loving one another.
  • Becoming knee deep in our friendships with others who are following Jesus Christ with all we have to give.

If we have been changed by the Gospel of Jesus Christ, it is absolutely impossible to stay the same. We have been invited to follow Jesus Christ and enter His life-transforming new life. We cannot allow ourselves to become complacent in our relationships anymore. Let’s start striving for God’s best!

Note: The deeper we get in our friendships, the more likely conflict will arise. But let’s try to strive for God’s best in our responses.

While our friend may act one way, we can pursue forgiveness and reconciliation. The difference between our old life and new is – the Holy Spirit. We are giving God full authority to work in our lives, and seeking to remain obedient.

Our hearts and lives are being changed. In Romans 12, we are reminded of the truth that we are being transformed and renewed by our great God. He has poured out His mercy onto our lives, and His Voice is ultimately the only One that matters. This is why our “in Christ” relationships differ, from those in our “before-meeting-Jesus” life.

My church relationships are far from perfect. I am sure yours are as well. Thankfully, our great God is perfect and able to work in them through His Awesome power!

We have been birthed into new life, because of Jesus Christ who has loved us with an everlasting love and continues to save us on a daily basis. Let’s see how to apply this Scripture in our lives.

Let’s seek to honor Jesus Christ through the gift of these relationships. The Bible teaches us how to do this. I know our relationships will not be perfect, but let us aim for progress. We need to be able to see Jesus working in our Christian friendships. Choose to surrender, and give the Holy Spirit the authority in these friendships.

In Christ,

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Clothed in Love {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.

Our faith and hope rest in Jesus Christ alone. God chose Jesus Christ to be our Savior and purposely sent Him into the world for our sake.

Reborn

Jesus Christ has brought us into a new place with God our Creator. We have been forgiven of our sin and reconciled with God. Because of Jesus Christ, we can trust God and find rest for our souls.

Now your faith and hope can rest in him alone. Now you can have real love for everyone because your souls have been cleansed from selfishness and hatred when you trusted Christ to save you; so see to it that you really do love each other warmly, with all your hearts (1 Peter 1:21b, 22; TLB).

Friends: From the moment where we first said “yes” to Jesus, we have been reborn. We have a brand new life, which “comes from Christ, God’s ever-living Message to men (vv. 23).” Let’s bask in our new life. While I know we are often reminded of our past, our slate is wiped clean by the work of Jesus Christ.

Church, we have been given such a precious gift through Jesus Christ and the amazing love He has demonstrated toward us. It’s time to celebrate.

The Selfless Surrender

Look at what God has done on our behalf:

He forgives all my sins. He heals all my sicknesses. He saves my life from going down into the grave. His faithful and tender love makes me feel like a king. He satisfies me with the good things I desire. . . (Ps. 103:3-5, NIRV).

As we walk in our new lives, we can have genuine love for others. This is made possible, because of the transformation Jesus Christ is doing in our lives. As we surrender our selfishness and hatred, it makes room for the good work God wants to do in our lives.

The Changed Life

He is our beloved Savior, and has chosen to redeem us. He has taken us out of our pit of selfishness and hopeless despair, and given us new life. As we walk in our new life, we are given the opportunity to take off our old “clothes” and put on the new. God wants to radically transform our lives, including the way we treat others. He is heaping gift upon gift over our lives, as we surrender control to Him.

God has chosen you and made you his holy people. He loves you. So you should always clothe yourselves with mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Bear with each other, and forgive each other. If someone does wrong to you, forgive that person because the Lord forgave you. Even more than all this, clothe yourself in love. Love is what holds you all together in perfect unity. (Col. 3:12-14, NCV) 

In Christ,

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