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Category: Women Authors

Where Can We Find God?

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Someone posed these questions, “Where can I find God? How can I find Him?”

I thought about the answer and this I know.

He is not a God who is far off.

The truth is – we can find Him early each new day.

We can find Him in the morning.

He’s already waiting for us before the night sky turns to dawn.

He’s already there waiting for us before our sleepy eyes are wide awake.

It is the place I meet Him with whispered words and grab His hand and never let go the rest of the day.

He is already there waiting for me. While my body needed a night’s sleep to rejuvenate, He never slept or wearied for one moment. He who never tires or sleeps refreshes me each morning.

There is nothing else that inspires me more than this experience each day – knowing the Lord is waiting for me, knowing that every morning He invites me to meet with Him, talk with Him, and go through my day with Him. It always begins with the dawn of each new morning.

In the quiet, waking moment of each new morning, before the rest of the world comes rushing in, I hear His voice and know He is near.

The dawn of each new morning is not only where He waits for me. It is also where He waits for you.

Isaiah 40:28

Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the LORD, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable.

Psalm 121:3-4

He will not allow your foot to be moved; He who keeps you will not slumber. Behold, He who keeps Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.

Jeremiah 23:23-24

Am I a God near at hand,” says the Lord, “And not a God afar off?
 Can anyone hide himself in secret places, So I shall not see him?” says the Lord; “Do I not fill heaven and earth?” says the Lord.

By Kathy Cheek
Used by Permission

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Devotions from the Heart at www.kathycheek.com

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The Candle of Hope

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May the God of Hope fill you with all joy and peace, as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.Romans 15:13

Christmas is coming! There are loved ones to see, gifts to give, baking to share. We prepare our homes for the celebration. Yet even more important than this outward preparation is the preparation of our heart. The Advent season is a beautiful reminder to prepare our hearts, as we prepare our homes, to celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus! Today we light the first of the four candles in the Advent wreath, the candle of Hope.

Is your heart filled with hope? Do you have a confident expectation of your tomorrow? What happens when the road ahead is filled with loss and stress weighs your shoulders down? When confident expectation in life’s tomorrow dwindles, what can you do? How can you walk in hope when you feel hopeless inside?

In one word the answer to confident expectation is “JESUS”…the Jesus of Christmas.

Hope in Jesus comes from more than just a belief that He was once a baby in a manger. This hope in Him has been called “an anchor for the soul”. It is something deep within that secures you through the storms of life. Putting your hope in Jesus will give you these four things.

Hope for Help

We are invited to come to Him and confidently ask for help. Hebrews 4:16 tells us, “to come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in our time of need.”

Hope to Overcome

Things that leave one feeling powerless and hopeless come in many forms. With Christ’s strength you can overcome great obstacles, and faith in Jesus gives hope and help to overcome. 1 John 5:4 says, “and this is the victory that overcomes the world, even our faith.”

Hope for Power

Sometimes in life we find ourselves with a task that simply looks too big for us. We do not just need a cup of God’s strength added to our own; rather we need His strength in us to do what we need to do. He will give it! 2 Corinthians 12:9 says, “My grace is sufficient for you: for my strength is made perfect in weakness.”

Seeing our weakness as the entry point of God’s strength gives access to His power!

Hope for Eternity

When we put our faith and hope in Jesus, it not only gives us help, strength and power where we walk today but it also gives us hope for life after death. It is a confident expectation of the ultimate “tomorrow”.

The God of Hope sent His son to be our Savior. He is only one prayer away. If you want the confident expectation of His strength and wisdom in your today and His help and hope for your tomorrow, you need only ask. Just tell Him…

Dear God, I have gone my own way and have put my hope in so many things that have disappointed me. Thank you that you sent Jesus, that first Christmas long ago, to be my Savior. I believe He came for me. Forgive me and come into my life today. Show me how to live in the confident expectation of how You can impact my life, my character and my circumstances. I place my hope in You right now and ask You to make Yourself known to me in my life right where I walk. I thank you. I pray this in the name of Jesus, Amen

Questions: How do you feel going into this Christmas season? Excited? Scared? Joyful? Lonely? Worried or delighted? How will you invite God’s hope into your situation?

by Gail Rodgers
Used by Permission

If you prayed this prayer we would love to hear from you . If you would like to know God deeper we can connect you with an email mentor and/or send you some great links.

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Born Into the World – Christmas Devotional

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Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others (the armies of heaven) praising God and saying, “˜Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.
Luke 2:13-14
(NLT)

Jesus was not born into a quiet moment in history. I need to lay down my perception of Christ coming when there is nothing else pressing going on in my life. Instead, Jesus is born right into the chaos of life on earth. With His birth, God pierces earth with His Son from Heaven and with it, gives us the greatest gift of Peace. Our responsibility is simple to receive Him. Jesus doesn’t come when all my dishes are clean, all the laundry is done, the house is perfect and the children are happily playing – Jesus beckons me to come join Him in the midst of everything that calls my attention and calls me away from Him. He calls me to come and be with Him. Quiet moments don’t come by themselves; instead I focus on Him and move everything else to the periphery. I make room for Him in my inner life. I invite Him into the center of where I live and move and have my being.

Prayer: Forgive me for the times I have shut You out, Lord, so You had to go find room somewhere else. Today, I invite you into the center of my life. Come, Lord Jesus, come.

by Idelette McVicker
Used by Permission


Have you come to the place in your spiritual journey where you realize that Jesus Christ died for your sins (all acts of active rebellion and passive indifference)? Would you like to be free inwardly from all of your sin and guilt? Would you like to have Jesus Christ, your Creator, direct your life from now on?  If your answer is “yes” pray the following prayer and your sins will be forgiven, your guilt will be removed and you will be filled with the Holy Spirit.

Lord Jesus, I want to know you personally. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. I open the door of my life and receive You as Savior ad Lord. Thank You for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Take control of the throne of my life. Make me the kind of person You want me to be. Amen.

If you prayed this prayer we would love to hear from you . If you would like to know God deeper we can connect you with an email mentor and/or send you some great links.

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Reason(s) for the Season

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Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,” 1 Peter. 3:15

The holiday-red card arrived in a square, shiny envelope. Attached to the card were credit-card sized “certificates” for merchandise available in a nearby department store. It wasn’t the bargain opportunities but the message on the card that caught my attention: “Let this be the holiday you find new reasons to believe.”

Even in the midst of the bustle of this season, most of us who call ourselves Christ followers could quickly come up with “a reason for the season.” We know that tinsel and trees, cookies and candles, family and friends are only side effects of the miraculous birth of the Savior. But how many new reasons for the season could we offer? What new work of God is happening in our lives? What new facets of God’s character are we discovering? What new and powerful truths from the Bible are becoming reality?

I wonder who in the advertising department thought up the potentially life-altering slogan? My skeptical nature doubts that a commercial establishment is interested in my relationship with God. But eleven short words arriving in the mail have focused my attention in new ways. Each day during this beautiful month I want to discover yet another “reason for the season.”

by Marilyn Ehle
Used by Permission

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Giving God Thanks and Praise

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Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name;   make known among the nations what he has done. Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice. Look to the Lord and his strength;   seek his face always. …Praise the Lord!Psalm 105:1-4

Today’s thought is my personal testimony.  11 months ago I suffered a minor stroke and also Bell’s palsy at the same time which is quite rare. I went through barrages of tests and X-rays with the final upshot being that I had indeed had both at almost the same time.  When I looked in the mirror I couldn’t believe that it was me. I looked like a gargoyle.  The right side of my face was completely paralyzed, my eye would not close, I couldn’t eat properly and I was unable to speak. I love public speaking, especially preaching and also writing spiritual resources and devotions some of which are part of this wonderful web site.  When I came out of hospital I couldn’t do any of that and, in fact, 6 weeks after my stay in hospital I developed post-traumatic stress disorder which saw me having panic attacks, without the ability to speak to people, stammering and not being able to find the right words when I did speak.  As to writing, well, I couldn’t even think of words to write in birthday cards.

For me, the next months were long and ones without joy.  I could still pray and I never blamed God, but there was no exuberant praise, no feeling of absolute joy when I looked around at God’s creation. My world became a very dark place and I thought I would never again experience the overwhelming joy with which I always associated my life.  Throughout this difficult time I could not praise God and mean it – there was no burning desire in me to listen for His voice.  That had left me bereft.  Through God’s amazing grace and His infinite patience, after many months of hard work, I am now able to write and speak again. I still have a long way to go to be completely recovered but I now can see and enjoy the glory of the rainbow and remember God’s covenants to us and yes, I can thank and praise him with exuberance.

David reminds us in his Psalms that we are to give God thanks and praise always.

God is still right there with us, providing whatever gifts and help we need to get through our particular circumstances.

Loving and Compassionate God, it is through your infinite Grace that we are able to overcome the darkness which at times overwhelms us, especially when mental or physical pain threatens to destroy us.  Thank you that you hear our innermost groaning and our sighs and that you wait patiently for us to see through the blackness and come into your light once again.  Amen

by Terry Stead
Used by Permission

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Faith is an Action Word

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Dear brothers and sisters, what’s the use of saying you have faith if you don’t prove it by your actions? That kind of faith can’t save anyone.
(James 2:14)

Why does God delay in answering our prayers? Why is help sometimes so slow in coming?

Mary and Martha, must have asked the same questions when their brother became seriously ill and Jesus did not hurry to their side. By the time Jesus finally arrived, Lazarus had died and been buried for four days.

Martha ran out to the road to meet Him. “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died,” she blurted. Martha believed that, had Jesus been present, He could have healed Lazarus.

But I know that even now God will give you whatever you ask,” Martha continued. She believed that Jesus had a peculiar intimacy with God and his prayers would make a difference. But she saw no way Jesus could help Lazarus now. The best she could hope for was that her brother would rise again in the final resurrection.

Martha believed all the right things about Jesus, even to the point of proclaiming Him to be the Messiah who was to come into the world. Still, she failed to make it practical. When Jesus told her to roll away the stone, she protested, “But Lord, by this time there is a bad odor, for he has been dead four days.”

Are you, like Martha, standing face to face with an insurmountable problem? Yes, you believe all the right things about Jesus, but are you willing to trust Him completely? Even now – with this present problem?

To believe is more than clinging to the right dogma. It involves action. “Faith without action can’t save anyone,” James tells us. When Martha surrendered her doubts and obeyed Jesus’ command to remove the stone from the tomb, making herself vulnerable, things began to happen. Now Jesus could work the miracle of her brother’s resurrection.

Lazarus came out of the tomb!

Why does God sometimes delay? He wants to lead us beyond a program of beliefs to a personal, intimate relationship with Him. He wants to show us another facet of his power. He gives us an opportunity to trust Him even when we cannot see.

Prayer: Dear God, increase my faith. I surrender my doubts and fears and preconceived ideas. I invite you to come into this situation and work it out for Your glory and my good.

by Helen Grace Lescheid
Used by Permission

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He Has the Master Plan

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Even though you planned evil against me, God planned good to come out of it. This was to keep many people alive, as he is doing now.” Genesis 50:20(GW)

Joseph was a dreamer. In his dreams he saw himself in a position of authority. Pay attention to the route the Lord allowed Joseph to travel to get to his place of purpose; the pit, the prison, and then the palace. The Lord used the challenges Joseph faced to mold him for greatness. Joseph had to humble himself and wait on God’s timing. He also had to forgive his brothers as we saw in Genesis 50:20. He discovered what they did was only a part of the Lord’s greater plan.

This should encourage us today. No matter what we may have encountered along our journey, it helps to know that the Lord has purpose in our pain. He desires that we learn to forgive and release those that hurt us. We must learn to trust that the Lord will not allow any of our experiences to be wasted. He will take the broken pieces and create a glorious masterpiece if we allow Him to heal our hearts.

Many of us are still bound because we have not fully forgiven others or ourselves. It is time to move forward. Make a decision today that you will no longer walk in bitterness, anger, or defeat. Make a choice now to forgive. Forgiveness frees you. It does not give the offender permission to hurt you again. It brings you to a place of freedom within. The choice is yours.

Father, grant us the grace to move forward just as Joseph did. We recognize how much pain and turmoil our decision to hold on to the past has caused us. We are aware of the joy it has stolen from us daily. We recognize that holding on to unforgiveness will only hinder us from seeing Your best plan for our lives. We want to be free Lord. Teach us to rest in Your peace as we allow You to heal our hearts. In Jesus’ name Amen.

Is there anyone that you are still holding unforgiveness towards? Then pray and ask the Holy Spirit to help you to forgive. Read: The Power of Forgivenesshttp://www.thoughts-about-god.com/reflecting/hb_forgiveness.htm

By Mary Pinckney
Used by Permission

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The Companionship of Joy and Pain

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We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation. And this hope will not lead to disappointment.” Romans 5:3-4 (NLT)

Recently, I watched a friend bury his beloved wife. His heart is cracking apart with grief. The loss and loneliness are a crushing burden he carries every day.

It seems almost sacrilegious to read this verse about rejoicing when we face trials in respect to my friend’s circumstance. Does God really expect him to rejoice in this devastating sorrow?

Ephesians 1:5 says, “God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.”

Do you see the joy and pain in this verse? God’s adoption plan was sending His only Son to die in our place. What pain! What sorrow!

Look what it says next, “He wanted to do it and it gave him great pleasure!”

Pain and Joy. They seem so diametrically opposed to one another and yet, their mutual presence is at the core of God’s rescue plan for us!

Why should this journey of following our Savior be any different?

Joy comes from knowing God and trusting His way. Joy comes from the deep springs of the soul. It doesn’t happen overnight, it’s developed over time as we grab hold of His hand and put one foot in front of the other. As we walk His way.

Jesus said in John 16.33 (NIV), “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Thought:

– Will you choose joy in the pain of your circumstances? What blessings are there in your pain? Take some time today to focus on the good, instead of the bad and make a list of signs of God’s goodness in your life.

– Are you embracing the joy and the pain in your life?

By Kristi Huseby
Used by Permission

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A Blessing to Pass On

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Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.Psalm 20:7  (Read all of Psalm 20.)

My friend moved to palliative care. She was dying. The Psalms comforted her as she prepared to meet Jesus and grieved leaving her family.

Often, we turn to the Psalms when our souls are hungry, thirsty, and needing comfort. They provide words to express what is going on inside of us. When I want to bow down in worship, I turn to Psalm 100.  When I feel afflicted and need protection I turn to
Psalm 27. When I want to remind myself of God’s presence, I read Psalm 139.  When I am in distress, I read Psalm 18. Do you have a favorite Psalm?

When I want to send a blessing, I offer Psalm 20. So today, I offer you Psalm 20. “Times of trouble” come to everyone — during those times, may the LORD answer your cry. May His name protect you. May He send you the help you need. May He strengthen your whole psabeing. May He tell you that He knows your name and remembers everything you have sacrificed for Him.

May He answer you and bless you with your heart’s desires. May He grant you success as you strive to follow Him. He alone has the power to rescue you. Some people trust many things to save them, but let us boast in the LORD our God. May we rise up and stand firm.

O LORD, answer our cry for help! Hear the desires of our heart. Thank You that you have all the power and strength we need. We deliberately put our trust in You to act on our behalf. Help us rise up and stand firm in You. Amen.

By Donna Mitchell

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Used by permission
www.thelife.com/dailydevotions

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Because He Lives

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Should they bring a child into this messed up world? Carla played the question over and over in her mind. Jim was unsettled about it too. The evening news was enough to make one cringe at what their child might be facing in another 10 years. Together they asked God for wisdom.

Carla put a CD in and let the music wash the dust off her weary emotions. The words of the song settled over her with an unexpected peace.

“Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.
Because He lives all fear is gone.
Because I know, I KNOW, He holds the future,
And life is worth the living just because He lives.”
(Bill & Gloria Gaither)

Carla shared the song with Jim. Could they trust their Heavenly Father to hold their future in His hand?

Thoughts and emotions tumbled in Carla’s heart and mind. She asked God to speak to her as she picked up her Bible. These words touched her heart…

We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.”
Hebrews 6:19

Carla read the surrounding verses and saw the certainty of God’s promise and His unchanging nature. With assurance in her heart she knew she could not allow fear to dominate any decision.

Many decisions face us as we contemplate the future and the condition of our world. Sometimes one can be tempted to retreat; not to travel in case something happens; not to bring a child into the world; or not to pursue a particular stand on an issue. Fear can become our guide if we allow it to. Fear based decisions are not God’s way of doing things. He offers His own wisdom to us. (James 1:5-8)

He is our God. We can count on Him to anchor our soul in a world that is set adrift with very little that is firm and secure. Fear need not rule our hearts when God is our anchor.

Father in Heaven, You know how fear seeks to over-ride my heart and affect my decisions. Help me to trust in You to give me the wisdom that I need. Keep my faith strong and focused on You as my anchor. Thank you for the certainty of Your firm, secure hand giving me hope and help in the face of fear. I declare my trust in You and ask You to fill me with Your Holy Spirit today. In Jesus’ strong name I pray, amen.

by Gail Rodgers
Used by Permission

If you prayed this prayer we would love to hear from you . If you would like to know God deeper we can connect you with an email mentor and/or send you some great links.

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Humility Toward Each Other

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All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.1 Peter 5:5

What do you do when you hear that someone was hurt by something you did? I heard through some friends that another friend was upset with me. When they told me the reason why, I rolled my eyes and thought, “Seriously? That’s ridiculous! I was trying to help!”

Have you ever had a similar experience? Despite your best intentions, have you ever upset someone else? It’s likely we all have. So as a Christ-follower how do we handle it?

It’s easy to get defensive and express our frustration with the other person. But, in Scripture, God calls us to humble ourselves toward each other. The indignation we might feel is merely pride, which rubs against our relationships and is contrary to grace.

Now, God does not call us to be doormats or to be manipulated. The difference is, when we are humble, we choose to value other people as much as ourselves.

In the situation with my friend, I apologized in front of the group in case I’d done anything to overstep my bounds. Another member of the group said to me privately, “You didn’t have anything to apologize for. She was being overly sensitive.” I nodded. “Maybe so. But she is struggling right now and my relationship with her is more important to me than being right.”

When dealing with the Body of Christ, we have to take the attitude of our Savior Jesus who knew His rights as God, but chose to humble himself to be in right relationship with us.

Lord, guide me in my relationships with others. You said that the world will know we are your followers by the love we show to each other (John 3:35). Help me to set aside my pride and to act in humility. Amen.

By Debbie West
Used by permission

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Run with Patience

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Therefore let us also, seeing we are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,” Hebrews 12:1

Normally when we think of “waiting on the Lord”, we presume that means sitting still.  We wait for God to deliver a ten – point list of what to do.

The Bible says to “Run with patience”.  The two seem contradictory. Running is active, while patience seems inactive.

The fact is God calls us to patience. It is one of the Fruit of the Spirit. At the same time, He cannot direct our steps, if we won’t move.  As the old illustration goes, it’s impossible to steer a parked car!

Dear friend, as you wait upon the Lord, continue to live a holy life. Apply God’s Word daily, live in the power of the Holy Spirit, and make yourself available to Him.

By Vonette Bright
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Expecting God to Speak

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So I sent for you immediately, and it was good of you to come. Now we are all here in the presence of God to listen to everything the Lord has commanded you to tell us.” Acts 10:33

Even more than Cornelius’ actions, it’s his attitude that inspires me. Cornelius served as a centurion in the regiment based in Caesarea. Although a Gentile, he feared the Jewish God as the one true God. Cornelius worshiped God, prayed regularly, and gave generously to the needy. So, when God sent an angel to Cornelius, he immediately obeyed the angel’s instructions to send for Peter. Cornelius expected God to speak through Peter. He gathered his family and friends in that spirit of expectation. They were ready to listen — ready to obey.

Every day, when I read God’s word, I want to come with that same spirit of expectation. God’s Holy Spirit teaches, corrects, encourages, comforts, and convicts us through His written Word, the Bible. Though recorded thousands of years ago, the Bible remains living and active (Hebrews 4:12) to all who seek truth.

Cornelius also understood that God was present in his home among the group of God-fearing, truth-seekers assembled. Whenever and wherever we seek God diligently and with open hearts, He is present.

God longs to speak to us. Let us come to Him, ready to listen and expecting Him to speak. Let us gladly submit ourselves to Him, ready to obey and eager to be molded into His likeness.

Holy God, I surrender myself to you. I believe you speak to those who seek you. Help me to seek you with my whole being. Make me a good listener. Amen.

By Suzanne Benner
Used by permission  https://thelife.com/devotionals

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How is Your Heart Today?

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Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life
Proverbs 4:23

Is your heart rejoicing today, or are you broken-hearted?
Is your heart pure, or is it deceitful?
Would people say you have a heart of gold or a heart of stone?
Do you have a soft heart or a hard heart?
Do you have a generous heart or a greedy heart?

During the past several weeks, I have been searching the Bible for verses describing our hearts. The Bible tells us that our attitudes and moods are an overflow of what is in our heart. Luke 6:45 says, “The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.”

How do we keep a heart attitude that is pleasing to the Lord? By being filled (controlled and directed) with the Holy Spirit. Ephesians 5:18 commands, “Be filled with the Spirit.”

How do we get a clean heart when our heart is dirty? 1 John 1:9 tells us, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

How can a broken heart be healed? Psalms 34:18 tells us to ask God to heal our broken hearts. “The Lord is close to the broken-hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”

After reading these verses about our heart’s condition, I realize that I can’t change my heart. I have to rely totally on Christ. In John 15:5, Jesus said, “Apart from me you can do nothing.”

How is your heart today? Can you say with the Psalmist, “Create in me a new heart and renew a steadfast spirit within mePsalm 51:10

Lord Jesus, I ask You to take our hearts in Your precious gentle hands and change them, heal them, soften them, cleanse them, and fill them with Your Holy Spirit. Amen.

To learn more about the Spirit filled life visit: http://thoughts-about-god.com/biblestudies_/spiritfilledlife

By Katherine Kehler
Used by Permission

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Awakening

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There is this love I have for mornings,
Day beginning new
And I take hold of all it offers me.

In quiet moments and rising sun
Whispers of my heart say,
Thank You, Lord
For this new day that You have made.

Thank You
For loving me,
Saving me,
Making me Your child.

Thank You
For making a plan for my life
Before I was ever formed,
Leading and guiding all that I do,
Picking me up when I fall,
Teaching me to trust You each step of the way.

This is what I rise to every morning
When I wake up to You.

By Kathy Cheek
Used by Permission from Devotions from the Heart:  www.kathycheek.com

WE WOULD LOVE TO HEAR YOUR COMMENTS.

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We’d love to hear from you.  If you don’t see our response form, please go to http://thoughts-about-god.com/blog/kc_awakening/

Learn more about knowing Jesus at: http://thoughts-about-god.com/four-laws/


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