Category: <span>thoughts by Kristi Huseby</span>

What image comes to mind when you hear the word “Peace”?  Is peace possible in the middle of your storm?


Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines; even though the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren; even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty, yet I will rejoice in the LORD! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!”
Habakkuk 3:17-18

Is peace possible in the middle of your storm?

What image comes to mind when you hear the word “Peace”?

Maybe it’s a tranquil place such as a green meadow with a trickling brook where the birds are singing, the sun is shining, and everything is pristine. Maybe it is simply the absence of chaos. Maybe it is what you are wishing your life was like right now.

What kind of peace are you pursuing?  Absence of trouble and hardship? My friend, this kind of peace will always be just beyond our reach. It will slip through your fingers like sand. What if peace was more like a place of refuge during a raging storm? Could it be that the peace Jesus offers is not the absence of trouble, heartache, and brokenness, but the peace we are given in the middle of our mess?

A few years ago, I came across the above verses tucked back in the obscure book of Habakkuk, found near the end of the Old Testament. They took my breath away. What kind of a person says this in the middle of such horrendous devastation?

I believe the author of Habakkuk is telling us where true peace is found. It isn’t the absence of chaos, but rather knowing where to go for sanctuary in the middle of it. This kind of peace is easier to grasp in the difficult times if we have made a habit of being with our Lord in the easy times through prayer, Bible reading, and quiet times alone with Him.

Are you willing to embrace the peace that Jesus offers ? shelter in a time of storm, refuge in the chaos, and sanctuary in the middle of the mess?

Lord, I am constantly wishing my life to be trouble free, but that was never what you promised. You promised your presence and your peace. Teach me to trust You and to take shelter in the shadow of your wings. Amen.

By Kristi Huseby
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Further Reading

• Stepping Into a Personal Revival

Dealing with Inner Turmoil

•  Salvation Explained


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Have you ever had a desire so huge you thought it would be impossible to ever come true? 


Jesus looked at them intently and said, “Humanly speaking, it is impossible. But with God everything is possible.”  Matthew 19:26

Have you ever had a desire so huge you thought it would be impossible to ever come true?  Or a burden so big you never imagined how it would be lifted?

I think all of us at one time or another have had deep hidden requests of God.  And if we’re honest, we secretly never really believed they would be answered.

I call these, “impossible” prayers.

I’ve heard lots of excuses of why we give up praying  or never pray for in the first place.
It’s probably not in God’s will.”

“It must be No because I haven’t gotten a Yes.”

I’m too tired to pray anymore.”

How can anyone ever really know God’s will?”

If all the excuses are stripped away, what we’re left with is simply, unbelief.  Unbelief that God is really capable, able or interested enough to answer our prayer.

Part of the problem is we want our prayer answered OUR WAY.

Are we praying, “Your will be done” or “MY will be done?”  Are we limiting God’s answer to how we think it should be accomplished?  Do we really want God’s way?

This year in our Bible study groups, we asked women to write down an “impossible” prayer request.  There was much hesitation and trepidation . . . what would we do if God didn’t answer our prayers?

As the year progressed, we watched in amazement as God answered prayer after prayer.  Often what we witnessed was God’s answer was vastly different than the way we thought or even prayed!

We witnessed a loved one experience a fractured hip which exposed alcoholism, which led to rehab and the beginning steps of healing.  Completely unexpected and totally God!

We prayed that God would change family members, loved ones, friends and what He did was change us!

We glimpsed fractured relationships restored and watched as God brought hope to hopeless situations.

Did all of our prayers get answered?  No.  But we are still trusting and still praying.

In the movie, Princess Bride (a beloved favorite of my family), Farm Boy only says three words to Buttercup, “As you wish.”  As she grows older she begins to realize that what he’s really saying when he says those words is, “I love you.”

I’m learning that my obedience and desire for God’s will instead of my own is directly related to my love for God.  They go hand in hand.  I can’t have one without the other.

As we’ve taken this journey of “impossible” prayers, my heart desires have changed.  My prayers are still the same but as I lift my request to God, I pray, “As YOU wish” instead of “As I wish.”  It has been a game changer for me.  It has widened my view and expanded my horizons.  Because now I’m watching, eyes wide open, to see how God is working and responding to my prayers.

Lord, may our heart’s desire be, “As You wish.”  Teach us to give everything to You . . . the simple, the challenging and the impossible.  Because we believe all things are possible with You.  Amen.

By Kristi Huseby
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Further Reading

There is Nothing Beyond Your Reach – by Mark Doyle
•  Fully Surrender to the Lord
•  Salvation Explained

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One day Jesus called together his twelve disciples and gave them power and authority to cast out all demons and to heal all diseases. Then he sent them out to tell everyone about the Kingdom of God and to heal the sick.”   Luke 9:1-2 (NLV)

The disciples have just been sent out by Jesus to heal and cast out demons.  They have seen Jesus raise Jairus’ daughter from the dead, heal the sick and quiet the storm and yet when they are faced with the needs of 5,000 plus people their solution is to send all the people to overwhelm the nearby town.

But the crowds found out where he was going, and they followed him. He welcomed them and taught them about the Kingdom of God, and he healed those who were sick.

Late in the afternoon the twelve disciples came to him and said, “Send the crowds away to the nearby villages and farms, so they can find food and lodging for the night. There is nothing to eat here in this remote place.”  Luke 9:11-12 (NLV)

And even after Jesus says, “No, don’t send them away, feed them.”  They still are clueless as to what they should do.

It’s as if, all that they have seen and heard completely fades into the background and all they can think about is the problem they have at hand – how are they going to feed all of these people?  And there sits Jesus in their midst.

My neighbor got up one morning only to find that the light in his refrigerator was out.  So he jumped in his car and drove 20 minutes to Home Depot to get another bulb.  When he arrived home and exchanged the light bulb, the light still did not work!  It was then that he noticed that the clock on his microwave wasn’t on and as he looked around the kitchen he realized that the power was out in his house!

It didn’t matter what he did or how many bulbs he changed in his house.  If his house wasn’t plugged into the power source none of them would work.

In the same way the disciples chose not to look to their Power Source.  All they could see was their insurmountable problem – they didn’t see Jesus as the Answer.

Aaah, how often do we do that!

A family member is cruel and vindictive and we immediately get on the phone to discuss our situation with a friend.  The dishwasher breaks down and since we don’t have any money we drive to the bank to take out a loan.  We struggle with anger and join a self-help program to deal with the problem.  What are we doing?  Running around changing the light bulbs in our house but not plugging into the power source.  We can turn on our switches all day long but it won’t do any good unless we’re plugged into the TRUE power source.

It’s not wrong to get help in a situation but why do we turn to God as a last resort, instead of going to Him at the start?  Why do we feel that praying and taking things to God is insignificant in light of being able to DO something.  What keeps us from turning immediately to God in our time of desperation?

Because deep down inside, if we’re willing to admit it, we feel that God really won’t answer or that He isn’t big enough for our problem or that we can handle it better on our own.

And just like the disciples we choose to ignore Jesus and all that He has done to prove to us who He is and we attempt to handle things on our own.

Fortunately for us, Jesus is a patient and loving God!  Look at how long suffering He was with the disciples as they grew in their understanding of Him and so He is with us!!!  Praise God!

What about you?  Are you running around “changing light bulbs and turning on switches” and have neglected to plug yourself into the Power Source?  Are you hoping to “fix” your life and then come to Jesus?  He is the only TRUE fixer!

So stop running and plug yourself into the only TRUE POWER SOURCE there is – JESUS!

Heavenly Father, teach us how to live through Your power and not in our own strength.  When we are faced with a difficult situations teach us to go to You first and seek Your way.  Keep our eyes, our hearts and our minds fixed on You, our only true source of power.  Amen

By Kristi Huseby
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Further Reading

Where Your Choices Can Lead You – Frank Krause story
My Son’s Addictions and My Prayer by Pat Veal
•  Salvation Explained

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Trust the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.’ Proverbs 3:5&6

I don’t understand God sometimes!  

To be honest, it’s really most of the time.

Why doesn’t He clearly reveal Himself to me?  Why does He often leave me guessing at who He is and what He is doing?   You see, I have these great expectations about God and what He could and should do.  And I get frustrated and disillusioned when I don’t see Him behaving like I think my God should. . .

My husband had a cousin who finally found love at the age of 40 and married a man who had lost his wife to cancer.  He had three children, who longed to have a mother again. They had prayed for three long years and she was their answer!

Her wedding was such an amazing celebration – so full of life and joy.   But only 3 months later we were in that very same church holding her funeral.  Her husband and her children were devastated!  And I found myself questioning God . . .  It seemed so senseless and even cruel! How could there be any good in this?

When my son was in High School he experienced an incredible amount of loss and disappointment in a 6 month period.  And as a result, he became disillusioned with God.  I begged God to show Himself to my son, “He needs to see You and know that You love him.  Will You just prove to him that you are God?”  But it didn’t happen that way and my son struggled in his faith.

Why does God do that?  Why doesn’t He feel compelled to meet our expectations?  After all He is God!   You would think that because He wants everyone to come to Him, He would be out and about proving who He was and what He could do.  So why doesn’t he do that?

As I was reading my Bible one day, I came upon a passage that echoed this struggle I was having with God.

Jesus was speaking to His followers and He was explaining to them that He was the Bread of Life. Look at his controversial words, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you cannot have eternal life within you.  But anyone who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise that person at the last day.”  John 6:53-54 (NLV)

Really!! Who wouldn’t be confused by those words?

It goes on to say that many of his disciples said, “This is hard to understand, how could anyone accept it?

Many of his followers turned their backs on Jesus that day and so He turned to his twelve disciples and asked them if they were going to leave Him too?

Look at Peter’s reply, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words that give eternal life. We believe, and we know you are the Holy One of God.” (John 6:68-69 NLV)

Do you see it?

Peter says, “WE BELIEVE and we KNOW you are the Holy One of God.”

I believe what Peter is saying here is that even though we don’t understand You . . . even though You aren’t meeting our expectations of what we think a Messiah should be . . . even though we can’t see the Way we will TRUST you.

And I love what he says right before that statement.  “Lord, to whom would we go?”

Times without number I have heard Peter’s words echoed by other followers of Jesus in times of disillusionment, “Where would we go?  How could we ever walk this road without Him?”

I’ve come to the conclusion that we cannot compel God to prove who He is.  He will do it in His time and in His way.

And His WAY is the way of faith.

So when I am disillusioned because my God is not meeting my expectations, I CHOOSE to believe, to trust that His way is good.

And I turn my eyes back to the Cross. . .

For how can I question His goodness, when He willing laid down His life for me?

By Kristi Huseby
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Further Reading

•  God’s Mysterious Ways
•   God’s Sufficiency Exceeds Our Need – by Sylvia Gunter
•  Salvation Explained

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I spent the first eight and a half years of my life in the beautiful state of Alaska.  My family lived fifty miles from the nearest town and a mile down a dirt road, off the Alaska Highway.  We had those old crank phones.  We never locked our doors.  About the only thing I feared was coming up on a bear while playing in the woods.  It truly was a wonderful place to grow up!

However, that all changed when we packed up our belongings and moved to California.  We settled into a tiny home on a busy street with cars roaring up and down at all hours of the day and night.  I would awaken in the night, gripped with fear thinking someone had invaded our house only to realize it was just the furnace coming on.

My world was turned upside down.

Fear stalked me like a lion seeking prey, ready to pounce at any moment. It was a paralyzing terror that threatened to overwhelm me, especially in the dark hours of the night.

One day my mom shared a verse with me to encourage me in my struggle and it became my hope.

“. . .  When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you.”  Psalm 56-3

I would lay in my bed, saying this verse over and over and over.  Hoping that it would magically remove the fear in my heart and let me sleep.  Even though I quoted this verse endlessly, it never quite seemed to work.  My fear was just as palpable as before.

I thought those words were magic.  That if I said them in just the right way, with just the right inflection than my fear would be gone.   I believed that these were the code words to release me from my fear.

God’s words aren’t “magic”  they are TRUTH.

I was missing something and that “something” was my action.  It’s not enough just to say the words over and over.  I needed to replace my fear with Trust.  I needed to believe it, act on it, and live it.

Trust takes practice.  It’s hard work and it never comes easy.
It’s easy to fear.  It’s easy to take control.  It’s easy to be self-focused.

A few years ago, I once again, found myself living in world of fear with my children.  I was consumed with anxiety over what they were doing and what they would become.  The more control I took the more out of control I felt.  I was overwhelmed.  In that place of fear, God asked me to surrender them to Him; to let go of the control and trust Him.  As I pried my fingers off the lives of my children and learned to release them to Him, God filled me with His perfect peace.

Over the years, I have had to surrender them over and over to the God who loves them even more than I do.  It hasn’t been easy.  Truthfully, it’s been a lot of hard work because I have a tendency to take them back again and again.  But as I’ve worked on this area of trust, it has gotten easier, and I respond quicker.

Once again, I’m faced with dread as my son heads off to the military.  I can let fear invade my life and stalk me like a lion or I can choose to Trust.

I know that in the upcoming months it will be easy to let fear raise its ugly head in life.  But fear is God’s reminder to me to trust Him.

I no longer need to quote words from the Bible with my fingers crossed hoping that they work.  I choose to take God at His word and trust Him with my children, my life and my salvation.

How about you?  Are you living in a world of fear?

Are you LIVING by trust or by anxiety and worry?

Let fear be your cue to TRUST!

By Kristi Huseby
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Further Reading

•  He Guides Us
•  God Provides for His Own
•  Salvation Explained

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I decided this summer to read The Hiding Place (by Corrie Ten Boom) again.  I’d read this book a couple of times before but this time in reading it I found precious gems of Truth that I had never seen before.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with The Hiding Place, it is the story of Corrie Ten Boom and her family who were taken captive during World War II in Holland for sheltering Jews.

As I perused this book again new truths came to light that caught me by surprise and took my breath away.

. . . As the rest of the world grew stranger, one thing became increasingly clear.  And that was the reason the two of us (Corrie and Betsie, her sister) were here.  As for us, from morning until lights-out, whenever we were not in ranks for roll call, our Bible was the center of an ever-widening circle of help and hope.  Like waifs clustered around a blazing fire, we gathered about it, holding out our hearts to its warmth and light.  The blacker the night around us grew, the brighter and truer and more beautiful burned the word of God.

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?  Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? . . . Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.” Romans 8:35

I would look about us as Betsie read, watching the light leap from face to face.  More than conquerors . . . It was not a wishIt was a fact.  We knew it, we experienced it minute by minute – poor, hated, hungry.  We are more than conquerors.  Not “we shall be.”  We are!  Life in Ravensbruck took place on two separate levels, mutually impossible.  One, the observable, external life, grew every day more horrible.  The other, the life we lived with God, grew daily better, truth upon truth, glory upon glory.

Did you catch it? . . . We ARE more than conquerors.  Not “we shall be.”  We ARE!

The LORD rescues the godly; He is their fortress in times of trouble.  The LORD helps them, rescuing them from the wicked.  He saves them, and they find shelter in HimPsalm 37.39-40

As I look at these verses through Corrie’s lens I realize that my understanding has been incredibly distorted due to my overwhelming need for comfort.

Corrie and Betsie’s life in the prison camp was filled with unspeakable horror.  And there is something deep within me that cries, “Why God, Why?  Why do you allow such godly people to suffer and die in such revolting conditions?  They followed you.  They gave you everything and yet look how You rewarded them!”

And it’s almost as if I can hear Corrie saying . . . “God was with me every step of the way.  He WAS my fortress in times of tribulation.  He WAS saving me and I DID find shelter in Him.”

I’m ashamed at how easily I slide into a faith that is only concerned about my comfort and not God’s ways.

LORD, rescue and save me from myself!  From my foolish desires, from my own need for comfort.  Teach me to follow you with my WHOLE heart.  Your love is never conditional – may my love for You never be conditional either.

By Kristi Huseby
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Further Reading

•  Choosing to be Bitter or Better
•  My Lord, My Companion
•  Salvation Explained

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“Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.Romans 5:3-5

Webster’s dictionary defines hope as: “to cherish a desire with anticipation.”

Hope leads a woman and man to profess their love for one another and commit to a lifetime of love together. Hope gives that same couple the strength to endure nine long months before holding their child in their arms. And it is with hope in their hearts they send that same child off to college and beyond….

But what would it be like to live without hope?

In the movie Jakob the Liar, Jakob Heym is a Jewish man living in a poor Polish neighborhood during the Second World War, where suicides are common place and food is rare. There is no contact with the outside world and little reason for any hope.

One day, unexpectedly, Jakob finds himself outside the community where he happens to hear a news broadcast. He returns to the neighborhood, and before long the place is buzzing. The community begins to throb with life as hope grows. Hope gave the people a reason to go on living.

For us as followers of Jesus, hope gives us a reason to live — really live. This hope is strong and sure; it is the anchor for our souls (Hebrews 6:19)! The pain and suffering of this world is minuscule in comparison to the glory that awaits us.

When life has you in its cross hairs and there seems to be no respite for your weary soul, remember, there is hope. It’s not wishful thinking, but it’s a hope that is sure.

Dear God, thank You that You have given us a reason to live. When our world seems like it’s crashing in, Lord, help us to remember Your glory. In Jesus’ name, amen.

By Kristi Huseby
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Further Reading

•  Hope for the Hopeless
•  A Poem of Hope
•  Salvation Explained

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But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31

What’s your mountain?

You know, the thing that’s standing in your path that feels insurmountable. A special needs child or dealing with a drug addicted teen? A financial crisis? A health issue? Perhaps it is the battle to forgive. Maybe you need help to love unconditionally or you have a hard time giving up control.

As you stand and gaze upward, its looming presence is overwhelming and you may wonder, “How will I ever get over this? Do I have the energy and the fortitude to even try? What if I fail?” I have such a mountain in my life. Some days (very few I must admit), my mountain seems “manageable,” but most days I’m praying for what seems impossible. I have observed something — when I focus on the mountain I’m easily overwhelmed by the enormity of it. Recently, my nephew shared with me how he was dealing with his own personal mountain – Army Basic Training. He said, “One. Boot. At. A. Time.”

I suddenly realized I’d been fixating on my mountain instead of fixing my eyes on my God. I assumed I would climb this mountain in one gigantic impossible leap, instead of one boot at a time.

We don’t have to worry about failing, falling, or fainting because God is with us. He’s got this mountain! We still must climb it but when we choose to concentrate on God, not on the mountain, we can walk up it, one boot at a time.

Faithful Father, you never call us to something that you will not equip us to handle. You never promised an easy road but you do promise to be with us and to give us the strength to hike it. Show us the way, strengthen us for the journey, and teach us to trust in you one boot at a time. Amen

By Kristi Huseby
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Further Reading

•   A Little Self-Control Goes A Long Way
•  The Re-Knitting Hand of God – What God taught me about ‘little sins’
•  Salvation Explained

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“You would not be pleased with sacrifices or I would bring them.  If I brought you a burnt offering, you would not accept it.  The sacrifice you want is a broken spirit.  A broken and repentant heart, O God, you will not despise.”  Psalm 51:16-17 (NLT)

These are some of my favorite verses in the Bible.  Granted they are not your typical favorite verses. For most people the idea of being broken is not very appealing and I would have to agree.  But over the years God has shown me the freedom I have when I am broken and repentant.  Let me explain . . .

Since I can remember, I have pushed myself to be “perfect”.  Perfect as a mom, perfect in my job, perfect as a wife, perfect as a follower of Jesus, basically perfect in everything. It was a very tall order and I fell short of that mark pretty much ALL the time.

Perfectionism was a disease of my heart;

it said,

You must never make a mistake, you must never let someone down and you must always look like you have it all together (even if you don’t) or someone will discover who you truly are.”

Perfectionism kept me from being honest with myself and with others.  It isolated me by pushing away the people I loved and the God who had redeemed me.

Going through the motions doesn’t please you, a flawless performance is nothing to you.  I learned God-worship when my pride was shattered.  Heart-shattered lives ready for love; don’t for a moment escape God’s notice.”  Psalm 51:16-17 (The Message)

God doesn’t want my perfectionism, my self-righteousness or something I’ve sacrificed so I’ll look good to my friends and family.  He wants my heart to be broken; to see the wrong and be truly sorry.  He desires a heart that doesn’t keep secrets but willingly lays claim to the wrong.

For a long time I didn’t understand this desire God had for me so I pushed for perfection and for most of the people who weren’t too close to me I looked the part.  But it was a façade; I looked good on the outside but was crumbling on the inside.  It wasn’t until God made me take a good hard look at myself that I saw my sin for what it really was – alienating me from God and those I loved.   Then I was finally able to let go of that all-consuming desire to be perfect and what I found in its place was FREEDOM.

Freedom to let go of what I thought I should be and become who God created me to be.  Freedom to reach out to others without fear.  Freedom to love unconditionally.

Freedom to be the real me . . . broken and redeemed!

Are you a perfectionist?  Do you find yourself needing to be perfect in everything, never allowing people or for that matter, God to see your flaws?  God wants to set your free from the chains of perfection that bind you.

Remember God doesn’t want perfection, He wants a heart that is broken and repentant and He will do the rest.

By Kristi Huseby
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FURTHER READING

•  Dealing with Inner Turmoil
•  He is Out to Destroy You!

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


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Thank you, Jesus . . . for rescuing me.

I was arrogant, self-seeking, and prideful.  I didn’t need You.  But You chose me and laid bare my depravity. A knife to my soul.  A necessary pain, to break away the old and form the new and I am forever grateful!

For though He wounds, He also bandages.  He strikes but His hands also healJob 5.18

Thank you, Jesus . . . for giving me life.

A life everlasting.  A life that begins now! My old way of living was a meager existence, a barely-getting-by reality.  But now I’ve stepped into a new reality, a new way of living.  Embracing the journey You have for me, viewing my circumstance through a new lens, knowing You are shaping me with a future purpose in mind!

I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look God’s home is now among His people!  He will live with them, and they will be His people.  God Himself will be with them.  He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain.  All these things are gone forever.”  And the One sitting on the throne said, “Look I am making everything new!”  Revelation 21.3-53

Thank you, Jesus . . . for making me Your beloved daughter.

No matter where I go, no matter what happens to me, no matter what someone says about me, I’m your child!  Nothing and no one (including me) will ever change that!  I am Your most precious possession.  You love me with an everlasting love.

See how very much our Father loves us, for he calls us his children, and that is what we are1 John 3.1

I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love.  With unfailing love I have drawn you to Myself. Jeremiah 31.3

Thank you, Jesus . . . for your faithfulness to me.

You never give up on me.  You never throw in the towel.  No matter what I do or say, you remain faithful.  You are the SAME, yesterday, today and forever!  Your love for me knows no end.  My behavior never changes who You are.

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.  Hebrews 13.8

The faithful love of the Lord never ends!  His mercies never cease.  Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morningLamentations 3.22-23

Thank you, Jesus . . . for knowing me.

You know me and yet you still love me!  You know my thoughts, intents and desires.  You know what’s best for me, what I need and what I don’t.  You are always for me.

O Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me.  You know when I sit down or stand up.  You know my thoughts even when I’m far away.  Psalm 139.1-2

Thank you, Jesus . . . for allowing me to know You!

You have given me Your Word so that I may know You. This isn’t a casual relationship but an intimate, personal, all-consuming one!  You are the lover of my soul and You desire me to know You.

This is what the Lord says:

Don’t let the wise boast in their wisdom, or the powerful boast in their power, or the rich boast in their riches.  But those who wish to boast should boast in this alone:  That they truly know me and understand that I am the Lord who demonstrates unfailing love and who brings justice and righteousness to the earth, and that I delight in these things.  I, the Lord, have spoken!  Jeremiah 9.24

By Kristi Huseby
Used by Permission

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Have you ever wondered what it would be like to live in a country where you weren’t free – free to drive to see family members, free to speak your mind, free to worship in the way that you want?  It’s hard for me to imagine what it would be like to not have a copy of God’s Word, to not be able to call a friend and talk about how I’m struggling in my relationship with God or to freely write what is on my heart.

As I see what is happening all around the world – the unrest in so many countries, the earthquakes and tsunamis, I have to admit my heart trembles and I wonder if my world will drastically change.  Will I someday experience what many Christians in other countries around the world experience?  Will someday being persecuted for my faith mean more than just losing my job or being criticized for believing in God but going to jail or having my family stripped away from me?

And then I wonder. . .  will I be as resilient in my faith as I am now?  Will I be able to stand strong in the face of danger?  If I let my thoughts run in that direction I can allow fear to completely consume me.

Look at what 2 Timothy 1:7-8 (NLT) says:

For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. So never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord. . . With the strength God gives you, be ready to suffer with me for the sake of the Good News.

“God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity but of power, love and a self-discipline. . .” 

When we give into fear and allow it to consume us we are giving power to the enemy but God has given us everything we need to stand strong and to face whatever comes our way!   But how do we do this in the face of overwhelming circumstances and fear? By turning our hearts back to Him.

When I experience fear, heartache or worry in my life He wants me to give it to Him and to claim His power and love.   Just as a pedestrian on a swinging rope bridge keeps their eyes fixed on the other side and doesn’t allow himself to look down to the gorge below,  we have to fix our eyes on our Savior, the author and finisher of our faith.

If God’s Word is true and I believe it is than He will give me what I need when the time arises.  I don’t have to live in fear or worry of what tomorrow will bring because He promises to be with me, to give me His Strength and His Power to meet whatever will come my way.

We have nothing to fear . . .

if God is for us, who can ever be against us?  (Romans 8:31 NLT)

By Kristi Huseby
Used by Permission

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• Eternal Love
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Our ancestors in Egypt were not impressed by the Lord’s miraculous deeds. They soon forgot His many acts of kindness to them. Instead, they rebelled against Him at the Red Sea. Even so, He saved them — to defend the honor of His name and to demonstrate His mighty power.Psalm 106:7-8, (NLT)

I came across these verses recently and I was transported back to a conversation I had with my dad.

He shared with me a discussion he had with a troubled man who didn’t believe in the Bible because he had never seen a miracle. My dad proceeded to tell him for the next two hours all the miracles he had seen and experienced in his life!

I wondered, could I do that?

How easy it is when we get in difficult places, like the Israelites. When we’re backed up against our own version of the Red Sea, we begin to question God. Where is His power? His greatness? His goodness?

We easily assume He has set us up to fail. We accept that He’s a dangling-carrot-kind-of-God who takes great joy in yanking things away whenever we get too close. We believe He’s a game-playing God who wants to see if we’ll flinch or yell “Uncle.” We think He’s a malicious, vindictive, and troubling God.

Why?

Because we’ve forgotten. We’ve forgotten the ways He has demonstrated His might and power, His unending love, His elaborate grace. We’ve forgotten that He is greater than us, wiser than us. We can’t seem to remember that He’s all-knowing, the ultimate strategist. We’ve forgotten the miracles.

So instead of forgetting, let’s choose to remember and hold close our God-sightings.
When the times of disillusionment come, when we feel God had backed us into a corner, we must remember the treasure trove of God-sightings. Let’s bring them out into the light and cling to their truth, even when we can’t see.

Jehovah God, we confess our short-sightedness and forgetfulness of Your great work in our life. How easy it is to let our circumstances determine our belief. We are fickle human beings who easily lose sight of our Creator. Teach us to remember, to treasure these miracles in our heart so that when times get hard and our way is dark, we will recall the light and see our way back to You. Amen.

By Kristy Huseby
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Angels and Miracles
A Christian Muslim in the Middle East – I am a Christian Muslim woman living in the Middle East.  Loving Jesus is a dangerous love.

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“Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under His power, and that He had come from God and was returning to God; so He got up from the meal, took off His outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around His waist.  After that, He poured water into a basin and began to wash His disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around Him.” John 13:3-5

Jesus knew who He was. He knew where He had come from and where He was going. This was God, the Creator of the universe, King Eternal, Yahweh, washing the feet of the ones He had created.

For the disciples, this was a “shock and awe” moment! No rabbi or any person of significant status had ever washed another’s feet. It just wasn’t done. The job of foot washing was always relegated to the lowest of the low, the refuse of society.

But Jesus never let society dictate His behavior, He never let it deviate Him from His mission. He had come to serve. Just hours from this moment, Jesus would demonstrate His greatest act of service, His coup d’état: the cross! He overthrew the norms, the status quo, and turned this self-driven, people pleasing society on its head.

After Jesus washed the disciples’ feet, He told them,

“Since, I your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash each others feet.  I have given you an example to follow. Do as I have done to you” (John 13.12-14).

Do what I do. Serve each other.

Having the heart of a servant was a way of living for Jesus and it should be for those of us who are His followers.  It wasn’t one act of service, followed by a myriad of self-driven deeds.  It was a lifestyle of service. Unconditional service. No expectations. Service born from a heart that loves.

Jesus’ greatest act of service, the cross, came from a heart propelled by love. And so should our service derive from a heart of love for those He created.

Unconditional service is never easy. Unconditional service always has a cost, but it is a way of life for those who choose to follow. It marks us as true followers of the One who first demonstrated His love for us!

Lord, we confess in this every-man-for himself world, we have lost sight of this servant way of living.  We have allowed the world and its ways to color our perspective and justify our self-centered choices.  Teach us to have the heart of a servant and to live each day, following the example you set for us.  Amen.

By Kristi Huseby
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We are Christ’s Ambassadors
Come Alongside – what it looks like to come alongside of people while Jesus draws them closer.

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“Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty…. He will cover you with His feathers. He will shelter you with His wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection. Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night nor the arrow that flies in the day. Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness, nor the disaster that strikes at midday.”
Psalm 91:1, 4-5

We won’t find rest if we’re living somewhere else. We won’t know peace if we’re trusting in ourselves, in our circumstances, or in our feelings.

We must reside and persist in the presence of our Savior. If we don’t, our lives will be plagued by fear and worry. Our situation will overwhelm us. We will be fear-driven instead of living in His shelter.

How do we do this with a God we can’t see or touch?

This is where it gets tough. This choice of life, this shelter-living doesn’t happen accidentally. It takes intentionality. It takes spending time with our Savior, pouring over His words, sitting in His presence, quieting our hearts long enough to hear His gentle whispers, and seeking His way not ours. It means falling on our knees in repentance, mourning our sin and refusing to make excuses for it. It’s surrendering our hearts, our choices, and our will to Him. All of this is so contrary to the world around us, but this is how we live in the shelter. This is where we find rest. This is where protection is found.

This is where we will find peace in the storm.

When we live in the shelter of our Abba Father, we no longer need to be afraid. Worry will become a thing of the past. Trust will be our daily companion. He alone will be our place of refuge and we will know a peace the world will never comprehend.

Father, when our hearts are weary and troubled, help us to look to You. Give us the determination and discipline to choose to live in Your shelter, to find comfort in Your wings. Thank You that You give us rest. In Jesus’ name, amen.

By Kristi Huseby
Used by Permission


If you don’t know God and his forgiveness and would like to start living a life where he is at your centre, you can start that journey today with a prayer:

Prayer

Lord Jesus, I want to trust you from now on. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. I open the door of my life and receive You as my Savior and Lord. Thank You for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Take control of my life. Make me be the person You want me to be. Thank you for enabling me to trust you in these uncertain times. Amen.

It starts today.


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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I have so much to be grateful for

– the people God has brought into my life, the family that I was born into and the many blessings He has poured out on me.  And I’m truly thankful for all God’s work in my life.

But over the last few years, I’ve become increasingly aware that there is a vast difference between being thankful for the things God has given me and living a life of gratitude.  Let me explain. . .

When we give a gift to someone, the most rewarding and pleasing thing for us as the gift givers is to see them enjoying and using the gift we have given them.  And on the other hand the hardest thing is to hear, “Thank you so much for this gift!  I love it.”  And then to see our present thrown in the trash unused and unappreciated.  Why?  Because we sacrificed part of ourselves in the giving of the gift and it was tossed away like a piece of garbage.

When we harbour bitterness in our heart, allow anger to control us, refuse to forgive, when we turn away from God, when our thoughts are focused on our self, we are not living in gratitude of the costly sacrifice Christ paid for us.  It’s as if we’ve thrown His gift into the trash and now live as if it is an insignificant factor in our life.  We diminish the price God paid for our sins.

Jesus paid the ultimate sacrifice to give us His most treasured gift.  1 John 4:9-10 (NLV) says,

God showed how much He loved us by sending His one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through Him.  This is real love — not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.”

So how do I live a life of true gratitude when I’m not perfect?

For me it has begun with allowing God to show me the depths of my depravity.  Seeing my sin the way God sees it and stepping into the sorrow and heartache this sin has wrought in my life and in the lives of others.  By doing this it has brought about a hatred for the sin and a passion to live in obedience to God and His Word.

God has also showed me that I cannot do this in my own strength; I have to live in dependence upon Him – seeking His way, His desires and His kingdom.  As I’ve come to see myself for who I really am, it has allowed me to see God for who He truly is and has brought a deeper meaning to His incredible sacrifice that He paid for me.

So let me ask you the same questions I ask myself on a continual basis:

Are you living a life of gratitude to your Savior, who died to set you free?
Are you diminishing the price He paid for you by the choices you are making?

By Kristi Huseby
used by permission

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Count Your Blessings

Bible Study:Thanksgiving for What God Has Done

Thanking Abundantly

Study on Thanksgiving

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