Category: <span>thoughts by Katherine Kehler</span>

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Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God” (Ephesians 5:2).

Just over two years ago, while in church one Sunday morning, I was introduced to the song, Above All written by Lenny LeBlanc and Paul Baloche. I cried when we sang the chorus. In fact, for years, I could not sing the song without being deeply moved. I still can’t.

Crucified laid behind a stone
You lived to die rejected and alone
Like a rose trampled on the ground
You took the fall and thought of me
Above all!

Just to imagine Christ, my comforter and best friend, crucified, rejected and alone, touched me deeply. I myself was going through a time of rejection and felt very alone, so the words of the song touched me deeply – realizing that Christ must have had some of the same feelings.

The sentence, “Like a rose, trampled on the ground”, gave me such a clear word picture of what Jesus went through for us.

One of the names of Jesus is “Rose of Sharon.”

One week, my husband and I spoke at a Day of Prayer gathering. We sang the song again and the Lord gave me a new insight. When a rose is crushed or trampled, it offers a very sweet fragrance. Jesus is a sweet smelling fragrance. The Apostle Paul tells us that we are a sweet smelling fragrance to those who believe. I wondered what kind of fragrance we as Christians offer when we have been rejected and feel alone – when we have been crushed and trampled on. Mine is not always sweet. How about you?

Lord Jesus, thank You! Thank You that although You are above all powers and kings, nature and all created things, You were trampled to the ground – for us. Yet being crushed, You were like a sweet smelling rose. You did it all for us. We ask that today and everyday, when we feel crushed and rejected, a fragrance of sweet smelling rose would flow from our spirit so people would be drawn to You. Amen

by Katherine Kehler


When I was in my thirties, I believed in God—was a Christian, was a churchgoer, but I did not know that I was created to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever. I learned that to experience a full and meaningful life, I needed to yield the control of my life to God (I had never done that), then I could experience His love and power moment by moment. This is the prayer I prayed. You can too!

“Dear Father, I need You. I acknowledge that I have been directing my own life and that, as a result, I have sinned against You. I thank You that You have forgiven my sins through Christ’s death on the cross for me. I now invite Christ to again take His place on the throne of my life. Fill me with the Holy Spirit as You commanded me to be filled, and as You promised in Your Word that You would do if I asked in faith. I now thank You for directing my life and for filling me with the Holy Spirit.”

Does this prayer express the desire of your heart? If so, bow in prayer and trust God to fill you with the Holy Spirit right now.


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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FURTHER READING

At the Foot of the Cross an Easter Poem

Touched by the Risen Lord by Elfrieda Nikkel

I Want to Know Him! Christ and his Resurrection Power

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


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thoughts by Katherine Kehler Thoughts by Women

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“. . . I am gentle and humble . . .” Matthew 11:29

One of the first devotionals in J. I. Packer’s Knowing God Through the Year uses the above verse.

Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”

My eyes stopped when I read, “gentle and humble.” I began to consider what I read.

Here is the Creator of all things — the God Almighty, the God who knows everything and is all wise, the One who is holy, the Ruler Supreme — telling us that He is gentle and humble, and that we will find rest for our souls if we come to Him.

You would think He would say, “Hey you, don’t you know how important I am? I don’t have time for you, I am too busy.” But He didn’t. He said, “Come to Me.” Wow!

The greatest leader, and He is gentle and humble. How many people do you know who invite you to come to them? How many leaders do you know, who, after they have become powerful, display gentleness and humility?

And then we must ask ourselves the question, “Am I gentle and humble?” Do people feel peaceful in my company?

A gentle spirit  is something we cannot produce in ourselves.  But the Holy Spirit produces “love, joy, peace, kindness, gentleness” and much more.   Why not ask the Holy Spirit to be in control of your life from now on and He will change your to be the person you want to be.

Here is a prayer for you:

Dear Father, I need You. I acknowledge that I have been directing my own life and that, as a result, I have sinned against You. I thank You that You have forgiven my sins through Christ’s death on the cross for me. I now invite Christ to again take His place on the throne of my life. Fill me with the Holy Spirit as You commanded me to be filled, and as You promised in Your Word that You would do if I asked in faith. I now thank You for directing my life and for filling me with the Holy Spirit.”

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.

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


FURTHER READING

God is my Delight

What a Friend we have in Jesus

Father God’s Intimate Love Letter to You


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“Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful” (Joshua 1:8).

Where do you get your standard for living?

On what do you base your value system?

Do you go to the Bible to weigh your decisions?

When I was in my early 30s I made the decision to serve and follow the Lord wholeheartedly, He, through the power of the Holy Spirit, began to change my life. I began to have an insatiable craving for the Word of God. I couldn’t get enough of it. My spiritual life had been starving and now I was being fed. I began to soak up the wonderful promises of God and also became aware of the commands (not suggestions) of God.

Before that, I had always attended church; although, over the years I tended to choose what parts of the Bible I would believe and what parts I would ignore. If someone had asked me, I would have said that I believed the whole Bible as the authority of God, but I wasn’t living that way (what you do is the fruit of what you believe). I sure didn’t read the Bible everyday, nor did I ask God to direct my daily decisions and actions.

But that changed. One day, while making dinner, I was listening to a message by Dr. Henry Brandt, a Christian psychologist who gave lectures at some of the conferences we attended. He mentioned that at a point in his life he had to make the decision about what he was going to use as his standard for making decisions and giving advice. He chose the Bible.

I had never made that decision. That afternoon, in my kitchen, I made the decision that from that moment on, the Bible would become my standard for life. Anything I read or heard that was contrary to what the Bible taught, I would reject. And with that decision, I had a stability that hadn’t been there before.

Of course, in order to make decisions based on the Word of God, you have to know what is in the Bible. You have to know God’s directions. I began to study the Bible. I started by working through a series of Bible Study books, called Ten Basic Steps to Christian Maturity https://www.cru.org/us/en/train-and-grow/10-basic-steps.html  About the same time, I began to read through the Bible every year.

My mind was (and still is) being renewed.

Romans 12:2 says, “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.

As my mind was being renewed, my values and standards began to line up with God’s will.

How about you? Is your life – your value system – based on the Bible? Are you sure? Have you ever consciously made a decision to make the Bible your authority for life? If not, why not do it today – right now.

Father, I need You. I recognize I have allowed the world to conform me into its mold. I have been deceived. From this day forward, I will use the Bible as my standard for life. I will read the Bible each day so my mind (and life) can be renewed by the power of Your Holy Spirit. Thank you that You are delighted with my decision, because You want the best for me. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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.



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


FURTHER READING

The Christian and the Bible – do you believe it is the infallible truth?

Heart Fully Committed to Him

We Plan, God Directs


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thoughts by Katherine Kehler Thoughts by Women

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“We were the ones who strayed away like sheep! We, who left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet God laid on Him (Jesus) the guilt and sins of every one of us!”  Isaiah 53:5

Not long ago, I read some results of a survey that found that most women live with a constant feeling of guilt. We feel guilty because we are eating too much, we are not exercising enough, and we don’t spend enough time with our kids, husband, relatives, or friends. And even though we can’t squeeze one more thing into our already frenzied schedule, we feel guilty because we are not doing enough, or because we aren’t doing what we see other women doing.

Last week I had lunch with an extremely gifted woman. She told me she felt guilty because she was not doing more of the things I was doing. I wasn’t surprised she said this, because there seems to be an epidemic of guilt feelings among women today.

I have learned that there are two kinds of guilt: real guilt and false guilt.

My friend was feeling false guilt, and this is what I told her: “God has given you many wonderful gifts and an amazing way with people. People love you. You are so good at what you do. I couldn’t possibly do those things. If you didn’t do what you did, those things would be left undone. You are just where the Lord wants you to be.”

The enemy of our souls is the “accuser,” and he will try to put these feelings of “not good enough” into our minds and hearts. Usually he puts this vague feeling of guilt on us, but nothing really specific. Don’t listen to him.

There is, however, a kind of guilt that is real. Sometimes we have sinful attitudes, or do and say sinful things. We may speak angry words, swear, gossip, entertain jealousy, flirt with someone, have an affair, or eat or drink too much. The Holy Spirit will convict you of these specific sins, and you will need to admit and confess them. Then, as 1 John 1:9 says, He will forgive and cleanse you — take away your guilt.

We need not walk with feelings of guilt. Christ has set us free from guilt and sin. Let’s walk in the freedom of forgiveness.

Father, thank You for freeing us from all guilt and sin through Your Son’s death on the cross. Enable us to walk in the freedom of forgiveness. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
Used by Permission

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FURTHER READING

Freedom of Forgiveness  | by Katherine Kehler
The church is full of sinners. Some sins are well known and others are hidden, but God knows the hearts of each one of us,

Have You Forgiven Yourself | by Katherine Kehler

From Victim to Victory – Physically and emotionally abused as a child, Sharon stopped crying at 6 and stopped talking at 9.


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One day I thought about the verse, “Keep yourselves in God’s love,” (Jude 21) and I wondered, “How do I keep myself in God’s love?”

After all, God’s love is eternal, unchanging and constant. Nothing can remove us from the love of God. What then does this directive actually mean?

God directed my thoughts to my relationship with my husband Marvin. He loves me more than anyone on earth. I feel secure, safe and protected. There are times however, when we have a misunderstanding and my feeling of security quickly changes to insecurity. When this happens, I put up a wall. I withdraw from his love rather than keeping myself in his love. The wall I put up shuts out his love.

In the same way, I will at times try to take myself out of God’s love. I know He orchestrates circumstances in my life to teach me divine truths. Sometimes these situations are very painful and I begin to doubt the truth of the Bible regarding God’s love. I put up a wall. His love for me hasn’t changed, but I don’t experience His love.

For example, when our five-month-old grandson, Spencer, died suddenly, the enemy put thoughts in my mind like,

How could a loving God take away this beautiful grandson from you?

I began to doubt God’s love. In my mind the attributes of God’s power and sovereignty loomed large and His love seemed small – like the smallest letters on an eyesight-testing chart.

Shortly after Spenser’s death, God spoke to my mind as I was driving along the freeway. He said,

Katherine, do you believe the Bible?”
I answered, “Yes, Lord, You know I do.
Do you believe that I am love?”
In my mind I could clearly see the verse in 1 John 4:16, “God is love.”

That day I made a choice – again. I would believe the Bible from cover to cover. There would be times when I wouldn’t understand God’s ways, but that did not meant the Bible wasn’t true. These times only revealed my limited understanding of God’s ways.

My wall toward God came down and I once again experienced the warmth of His love.

God, thank You that what You say is true. Thank You that the Bible is truer than our feelings. Amen.

by Katherine Kehler
used by permission


God  is waiting to show His love and kindness to you and to guide your life.  He wants to make something beautiful of your life.  And you can open your heart and life to Him today by praying this prayer with a sincere attitude.

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 to you and ask you to come in as my Savior and Lord. Take control of my life. Thank you for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Make me the kind of person you want me to be.


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


FURTHER READING

Importance of Knowing God
I Want to Know Him
The Christian and the Bible – do you believe it is the infallible truth?


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“Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you”  Hebrews 13:5

Webster’s dictionary defines loneliness as,

being without company; cut off from others; not frequented by human beings; sad from being alone; producing a feeling of bleakness or desolation.

Have you ever felt lonely? Loneliness has many causes: The death of a loved one, divorce or separation, a broken engagement, a career loss or change, a move from one city or country to another. Leaving what is comfortable and familiar and moving into the unknown can be a lonely experience.

Someone once said that loneliness is not simply a matter of feeling alone, but rather the feeling that no one cares what happens to you. Most of us have felt lonely sometime in our lifetime. Feelings of rejection and abandonment are common. Even Jesus felt lonely. We need to know that someone cares about what happens to us.

What can we do to help ourselves when we feel lonely, and how can we help others?

1.  Realize that Jesus also was lonely, so He knows how you feel. Talk to Him about how you feel. (Isaiah 41: 8–10)

2.  Read your Bible every day. You will receive comfort and affirmation.

3.  Know that Jesus will never leave you or forsake you. He is always there.
(Hebrews 13:5)

4.  Talk to a friend about how you feel.

If you are feeling lonely today, I also encourage you to read Facing Loneliness, by J. Oswald Sanders. It offers some excellent advice and insights.

Father, we feel so lonely at times. We need You to envelope us with Your love and attention. Thank You that You promised to meet our every need. Help us to be alert to befriend those who are lonely. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
Used by Permission

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“I am gentle and humble in heart” Matthew 11:28 

I have been rereading The Glorious Pursuit, Embracing the Virtues of Christ by Gary L. Thomas. As before, the content is very thought provoking. Thomas opens with this thoughtful paragraph:

Pause a moment and try to imagine yourself as a person who acts with the compassion of Christ; who has the patience of God Himself; who is discerning; gentle, yet confident; surrendered to the will and purpose of God. This is the life Jesus wants you to inherit, transforming you into a person who is motivated by the beautiful, not the lustful; the generous, not the selfish; the noble, not the conniving; the creative, not the destructive.”

The book is all about embracing the virtues of Christ. One chapter, “The Caressing Life,” expands on the virtue of gentleness, especially the gentleness of Christ.  Jesus describes himself, “I am gentle and humble of heart” (Matthew 28–30).

We are also admonished to

Let your gentleness be evident to all” (Philippians 4:5).

How does this work out in real life? If you have read the Gospels, you know that Jesus was gentle with most people — healing, feeding, preaching, and teaching. He also became angry with phonies and people who were just trying to set Him up, and He told them in no uncertain terms that He knew what they were trying to do.

I was reflecting on this late last night when our doorbell rang. Two women were on our doorstep asking to use our phone because their car had broken down — they needed to call a cab. I hesitated. We live on a busy highway and have had some unpleasant experiences over the years — people such as these requesting help and then lying and stealing thousands of dollars worth of equipment from our barn and garage. However, to be fair, many were honest and just needed help, which we offered. — my husband has helped several women change flat tires.

But how do I embrace a gentle spirit when I have been hurt and/or deceived? There is only one way. Open myself to Christ and ask Him to develop a gentle, discerning spirit within me. For everything that God asks us to do, He also provides the resources. Isn’t that great?

For God is at work within you, helping you want to obey Him, then helping you do what He wants” (Philippians 2:13).

He will produce in us the wisdom to know when to be gentle with people and when to be firm.

By Katherine Kehler
Used by Permission

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“And always be thankful” Colossians 3:15

When I was younger, I naively thought temptations such as cynicism and critical attitudes would lessen with age. I thought I would be a nicer person when I became a senior.

To my dismay, I find that my mind is still being attacked with those temptations.  But why should I be surprised? After all, we never lose our sinful nature, even though the Holy Spirit gives us a spiritual nature.

I find that I need a continuous, moment-by-moment fellowship with God so that I remember to give the temptations to Him. Corrie Ten Boon said, “When temptations come knocking at my door, I let Jesus answer.”

Cynicism has been plaguing me lately — it seems to be getting worse as I get older. Based on my past experiences, my insights and analysis may be accurate, but if my heart is without love, it is sin.

The only cure for cynicism is to cultivate a habit of thankfulness. A thankful heart cannot be cynical.

If you find yourself being cynical or critical today, begin thanking God for all the blessings in your life. You will be much happier.

Father, create in us thankful hearts. Keep us from being critical and cynical. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
Used by Permission

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“And my God shall supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19

This is the story of Marie.  Marie is from Jamaica and is one of our (Thoughts About God) Prayer partners.  She is 53 years old.  Marie’s story of God’s daily provision throughout her life will surely encourage you.

I want to share my testimony with those who are seeking financial and other blessings from God.  My daily walk with God is one blessing after another.  

I was saved when I was 12 years old–lost my mother when I was 15 and have also lost my only child.  No one came to my rescue but God.  Every time He sent someone to meet my needs. I would wake up in the morning and find money, food or clothing.  I just give thanks.

I grew tired of living from pay check to pay check, but looking back, I recognize that He has always come through for me and I so I share with others whatever he bless me with.  My cupboards have never gone dry or empty. My brothers and sisters–trust God for everything and give Him thanks for it.  

I am working, but my take home pay is little, yet every day He provides the bus fare, the lunch and money to buy my medication.  God is good all the time and all he wants us to do is trust him for everything.  Ask him and believe him for the answers.

One of the things I learned over the years is to give thanks for everything no matter how small it is or seems. God provides for His own.  We (people around the world) are experiencing difficulty now, but God is in control. Just like He protected the children of Israel and provided for them, He will do the same for his children in the difficult times we are facing now.”

I could go on but remember Maria is praying for you and your requests.  I know God is answering them even now.

Thank you, Lord Jesus that you do indeed provide for all our needs as you promised.  Give us the grace to trust you and not to worry or fret.  We love you, our great and mighty God.  Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
used by permission

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“The thief’s purpose is to steal, kill and destroy. My purpose is to give life in all its fullness” John 10:10

In the fly leaf of my “purse” Bible, I often jot down quotes and thought-provoking ideas I hear in church. This morning I noticed one I had written a few years ago: “Satan is not out to give you a bad day, he wants to destroy your life.”

The thief’s purpose is to steal, kill, and destroy. Death and darkness! Christ’s purpose is to give live in all its fullness. Life and light. Complete opposites.

Marvin and I were youth directors in our church for many years. One year we experienced a phenomenal revival and spiritual awakening — not only in our church youth group, but also in many others in our district. Three young adults, who were drug pushers, attended the youth meetings every Monday evening. One evening, all three of these young men gave the control of their lives to Christ. We were so happy and so were they.

That night we were in bed, almost asleep, when the phone rang. It was one of the three young men. The Holy Spirit had filled them with great boldness. “We were just at the pool hall and were witnessing to the guys in there,” he said. With the Bible on the pool table, they had pointed to the road and said, “See the road out there? Cars are going east or west. There is no middle road. You all have to decide whether you want to go to heaven or hell. There is no in between.

Heaven or hell. Darkness or Light. Death or Life. I encourage you to choose Christ and life, eternal life in heaven — light. Today!

If you have not yet consciously made the commitment to follow Christ, do it today. Don’t put it off.

Lord, You are the Father of Life and Light. The enemy is the father of lies and darkness.  Father, we choose You and Life. We reject Satan and his lies and darkness. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
Used by Permission


Living with hope

Take a look at your life.  How would you describe it? Contented? Rushed? Exciting? Stressful? Moving forward? Holding back? For many of us it’s all of the above at different times. We experience a mix of dreams and regrets.

In the Bible, it says that Jesus came to make all things new. What would your life look like if you could start over? Your past doesn’t have to control your future. God has a wonderful plan for your life. No one can be perfect, or have a perfect life. But every one of us has the opportunity to experience complete forgiveness through a personal relationship with God made possible through Jesus Christ. And when God comes into your life, he starts to transform you from the inside out.

You can receive Christ right now by faith through prayer. Praying is simply talking to God. God knows your heart and is not so concerned with your words as He is with the attitude of your heart. Here’s a suggested prayer:

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 to you and ask you to come in as my Savior and Lord. Take control of my life. Thank you for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Make me the kind of person you want me to be.

Does this prayer express the desire of your heart? You can pray it right now, and Jesus Christ will come into your life, just as He promised.


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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“The one who calls you is faithful and He will do it” 1 Thessalonians 5:24

I was overlooked for the leadership position again. Someone much less qualified than me was chosen,” she wrote. She was committed and qualified, but overlooked again and again. It was not right. She asked me, “Is this the norm for most Christian ministries? This is not the first time I have encountered this and I have to say it is extremely hurtful.”

Has this happened to you? Well, you and I know how painful it can be. I have been down this road several times and I can tell you it doesn’t get any easier.

But along the way, I have learned some “God” things. If God puts a call or desire in your heart, He will be faithful to do it through you; however, He may want you to expand your horizons in order to bring this dream to fruition.

I am an innovative person. God has put many dreams in my heart and He has helped me to fulfill those dreams. Sometimes it took a lot longer than I thought it would, but He did it. God put a dream in my heart to reach women through the Internet and since then He has faithfully provided the resources, qualified people and finances.

Recently I read the book, Why Not Women? In the last chapter, the author, Lorne Cunningham wrote:

“It is not your job to change everyone’s mind. It is your job to obey and do whatever He is calling you to do. Keep yielded to Him and open the door to others, free in your spirit from any feelings of rejection or bitterness. Obey God and let Him take care of the results. It will eventually become clear to everyone that God has His hand on you.”

Sometimes life doesn’t seem fair. Perhaps God is using this “unfairness” to push you out of the nest (your comfort zone) to show you He has something new and exciting for you to do. Why not ask Him? Ask God to show you other horizons where you can make your dream come true. Be strong and courageous. God will supply your needs.

Lord Jesus, show us where You want us to fulfill the dream You have put in our heart. Help us to be willing to step out of our comfort zone and trust You. In your name I pray. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
Used by Permission

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Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God” (Philippians 4:6).

How do you pray with confidence? How do you know if God will answer your prayers? Four key words answer this question:

Abide
Abiding is the key to successful praying. In John 15:7, Jesus states,

“If you abide in Me and My words abide in you, ask whatever you will and it shall be done for you.”

Colossians 3:16 says,

“Let the Word of Christ richly dwell within you.”

Abiding means you want to stay as close to Christ as possible.

Ask
Jesus tells us in Matthew 7:7-8,

Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you. For every one who asks receives; and he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks it shall be opened.

We can ask God for anything and He listens – He will answer. Ask specifically!

Someone has said when we get to heaven we’ll find a lot of unopened gift packages with our name on them because we did not claim them through prayer.

Believe
In Matthew 21:22 we read,

Everything you ask in prayer, believing you shall receive.”

Faith, which is an attitude of believing, pleases God. With Him, all things are possible. Remind yourself of this verse when you pray.

Receive
If you are abiding in Christ and you have asked and believe, get ready to receive the answer. In other words, when you pray for rain, carry an umbrella. John 16:24 says,

Ask and you will receive, that your joy may be made full.”

Remember these four words to pray with confidence:

  • abide,
  • ask
  • believe
  • receive

Father, teach us to pray with confidence. To abide in Jesus, to ask, to believe You will answer our prayers and to be ready to receive Your answers. Amen.

by Katherine Kehler
Used by Permission

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“I want to know Christ and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His suffering” Philippians 3:10

What is suffering? Elisabeth Elliot describes suffering as

wanting what you don’t have and having what you don’t want.”

That definition pretty well covers all the little and big “troubles” we go through during our lifetime. It could be a broken hairdryer or a disease. We will have problems. Maybe you don’t have any today, but you probably will tomorrow. And – think about it – you could even be someone else’s problem!

Our reactions or responses to these problems are the key to our inner peace.

Recently, a very positive acquaintance told us about deep waters he had gone through. He said a dear friend and author, Philip Keller, had given him the following spiritual principles to meditate on and apply to his life. He said they had made a big difference in his perspective on problems.

Acknowledge – God is my Father – He knows what is best for me, so I must acknowledge He arranges all my affairs.

Accept all that comes to me as His arrangement. In acceptance comes peace.

Approve of what He does and how He does it. Thanking Him for sincerely releases Him to do great things for you (no more controversy).

I encourage you to make a copy of the three steps, keep them in a handy place, review, and apply them to your situation whenever you have a problem. It will change your perspective.

Suffering is not for nothing.

Father, You know we get far too independent if we don’t have problems. So I thank You for problems. Enable us to acknowledge, accept, and approve that You know what is best for us. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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“The Lord sees the good people and listens to their prayers” 1 Peter 3:12

Recently, I received an e-mail from a new Christian. She had read my devotional on the elements of effective prayer and asked, “What words would I use?”

It’s an interesting question to which I have given some thought. How do you teach a new Christian the words to use to begin to talk to God? When mature Christians have walked and talked with God for a long time, they forget what it was like at the beginning of their walk with Christ.

She would need to be told that prayer is simply talking to God. He isn’t as interested in our words as He is in the attitude of our heart. Because more mature Christians often pray long prayers (whole paragraphs — even a whole sermon) in one sitting, new Christians are intimidated. They know they can’t pray like that — nor do they need to.

Using the acrostic, Adore, Confession, Thanksgiving, and Asking, I would teach her to pray in short, simple sentences — something like this:

•  Adore  “Father God, I love You.”
•  Confess  “I was (name a bad attitude or action) today.”
•   Thank God  “Thank You for cleansing my heart from these sins.”
•  Ask  “Please fill my heart with Your Holy Spirit and empower me to please You and get to know You better.”

When she begins to feel comfortable praying one short sentence, she could begin praying several sentences for each part of the acrostic.

Too simple? For some people it would be. Others will welcome a very simple “how to pray” outline. Regardless of how few or how many words we use, we can be sure that God listens to us, and to our hearts.

Jesus, Your disciples asked You to teach them how to pray. We also ask You to teach us to pray. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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“The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and He delighteth in his way” Psalm 37:23

I had planned to run errands in the morning but there were so many urgent things to do, I didn’t leave until mid-afternoon. There were several entrances to this parking lot and I chose to come in the back way. I didn’t realize that God was directing me until later.

Picking up my dry-cleaning from the back of the car, I quickly walked toward the cleaners. As I looked up, I saw a young woman standing on the sidewalk in front of the store. I could see she was crying so I walked up to her and gently touched her arm and asked her, “What is wrong? Can I help you?”

Then she really began sobbing and told me her mother was in the hospital and just had a stroke. She had no money for a bus ticket to go see her. My heart went out to her and I told her I would help her. I gave her enough money for the bus ticket and some extra for food.

I asked her if she had faith in God. He would sustain her and help her. She said, “Yes, she did.” Then she surprised me by asking me if I had faith in God. I, too, said, “Yes.” We talked a little longer and then we parted. After my errands I walked back to the car. I looked for her, but she was not there.

One of God’s children was in need. God knew all about her needs that day and directed my steps so I would drive into the rear parking lot…in the afternoon…at exactly the time when she would be there…so I could help her.

Coincidence? No. God cares for His children so much. He is such an organizer that it is nothing for Him to arrange our lives in such a way so we are available to help people in need.

Let me encourage you to start taking notice of the unexpected ways God directs you.

Father, thank You that You love and care for your children. I am amazed at how You direct our steps yet so often we are unaware of it. You are awesome! Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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