Category: thoughts by Katherine Kehler

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He who watches over you will not slumber… Psalm 121:3

Peace and panic cannot occupy the same place. If we are filled with fear, we aren’t peaceful.

I am not usually a fearful person. My husband has travelled a lot the past years and when I go to bed, I thank God that His angels are surrounding our property and protecting us. I thank Him that He is above us and that He is our foundation. I am covered with His protection. I trust Him and go to sleep.

However, one night I woke up after being asleep for only an hour. I thought I heard someone trying to open one of our doors in the house. (We don’t have an alarm system but we have two big dogs.) Our property is on a highway and we have had some interesting people come to our door and have been robbed several times. Needless to say, my heartbeat quickened and I began to perspire, especially when I remembered that I had not checked the windows to see if they were locked.

Then the Lord brought the verse to my mind:
He who watches over you will not slumber.

I settled down and thanked God that He was still watching over us and He didn’t need any help. Then I fell asleep.

How are you doing today?

Do you have any major fears?

Are you peaceful or fearful?

Have you affirmed in your heart that He can take care of all your needs and protect you?

Ask God to give you the grace to believe Him and receive His peace. He is all-powerful.

Father, thank You that You never slumber, that You are always watching over us. Jesus You are the Prince of Peace. Come, we invite You to invade our hearts with Your peace today. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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“Put on the full armour of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes” Ephesians 6:11

Every morning I begin my day by asking God to direct, empower, and protect me, so I will be able to please Him in all I do, think, and say. I want to be in tune with what He wants for me. Often, there are times during the day when I take back control of my life from God and try to do things my way. When I do this, I leave a door open for the enemy.

One night, after talking to Marvin on the phone — he was in Florida — I went to bed and fell asleep. Suddenly I awoke. I thought I felt someone crawling into bed with me.  My first sleepy thought was a joyful, “Oh, Marvin must be home.” Then I realized that he was in Florida.

I got really scared and silently prayed, “Lord, who is it?” He let me know that it was the enemy. I knew I had to pray aloud and so I prayed, “In the name of Jesus, I command you to get out of our house.” As soon as I prayed the presence left. I lay there for quite a while until I had the courage to turn on the light. Yes, the name of Jesus is powerful indeed!

Dramatic attacks of the enemy like that are rare. Far more often he attacks with fiery darts. The enemy uses someone’s careless remark or our own imaginations to tell us that no one appreciates us or that we are of no value. Within minutes our self-esteem can plummet to rock bottom because we listened to the enemy instead of listening to the Holy Spirit.

We must be alert so that we are able to discern whose voice we are listening to. Our thought life has two channels — one is alert to God, and one is alert to Satan. We have to choose which channel we listen to. If we ask Him to, God has promised to direct our steps. As we spend time with Him, He will teach us to hear His voice.

Father, thank You that You are faithful and will strengthen us and protect us from the enemy. Cause us to be alert and listen to Your voice. Thank You that You are the Almighty God. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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“And don’t forget to thank Him” Philippians 4:6

In my daily devotional one day, the words of the song Count Your Blessings, Name Them One by One was included. I haven’t sung that song for a long time – the words are tremendous:

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, ev’ry doubt will fly,
And you will be singing as the days go by.

What a wonderful reminder to take the time to think about what God is doing for us. Too often we focus just on the horrid things – the evil, the hurricanes, the floods and devastation and famine.

But take time every day to verbalize or write all you are thankful for. You may want to use this outline. Doing so will revitalize your soul.

Begin With Thanksgiving

Psalm 100:4 tells us,

Enter into His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise.”

•    Thank Him for His patience and forgiveness.
•    Thank Him for the privilege of coming into His presence.
•    Thank Him for what He has done in and through your life in the last year.

List What He Has Done

Take time to list what God has done for you. Be specific. Think through every area of your life.

  • Become Still Before the Lord. (Psalm 46:10)
  • Consider who God is. (Psalm 103)
  • Praise Him for His attributes. (Psalm 145)
  • Rejoice in your fellowship with Him and that He delights in you. (Proverbs 15:8)
  • Read passages of scripture and pray them back to God. (Psalms 146-150)
  •  Sing to the Lord.

Lord I thank You for the beauty of the seasons. I thank You for health and strength. I thank You for people to love and people who love me. I love You God and thank you for loving me first. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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“When you did it to these my brothers you were doing it to me! When you refused to help the least of these my brothers, you were refusing to help me” Matthew 25:40  

I believe these verses are talking about helping people in need — or refusing to help them.

While some scholars say “my brothers” refers to Jewish people, others say it means “Christians,” and still others say it refers to any people in need.

But the issue is larger than that, isn’t it? Jesus is referring to our attitudes and our hearts!

How is your heart attitude today? Do you, like the men in the story of the Good Samaritan,  quickly walk by people in need without a thought? Or are you alert to people needing encouragement today? Maybe they need some financial or emotional support; if so, would you take time to help them? Do you ever stop and pray with the hurting friend? You would be doing it to Jesus.

I would like to expand on these verses a little. This may be stretching the theology of these scriptures, but I believe the Holy Spirit gave me this insight.

When someone hurts, shuns or betrays us, they have really done it to Christ in us. One translation of the above verse reads, “Whatever you do . . . you have done it unto Me.” When we do good to others, we are doing it to Christ. When we hurt others, we are hurting Christ. When others are kind to us, they are being kind to Christ. When they hurt us, they have hurt Christ.

This new insight alerts me to be more kind. I also find it comforting to know that Jesus and I are so close, that when I get hurt, He gets hurt. A real friend!

Lord Jesus, thank You for feeling all the pain I feel. Thank You for making me alert to the fact that You also feel the pain of all the people in the world. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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“So living or dying, we belong to the Lord” Romans 14:8

We all desire to belong to someone. We don’t want to be alone, and we want someone to love us. I vividly recall hearing a new Christian say, “I belong. For the first time in my life I know I belong to someone.”

Belonging to Jesus Christ for all eternity is so great. On earth, time or circumstances eventually separates us from the people we “belong” to — our parents, our spouse, our family, our church, or organization. This is normal. But the wonderful assurance for those of us who are in Christ Jesus is that we belong to Him, not only now, but for all eternity. We will always be part of the God’s family.

The Apostle Paul wrote in Romans 8:38–39,

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

The chorus of the song written by Norman J. Clayton states it so clearly.

Now I belong to Jesus, Jesus belongs to me,
Not for the years of time alone,
But for eternity.”

We belong!

Lord Jesus, it is so comforting to know we belong to You, our Savior and best Friend. Thank You for loving us, never leaving us, and always watching out for us and supplying all our needs. Thanks for being our Comforter. Help us keep our minds centered on You. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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But God, being rich in mercy” Ephesians 2:4

Not long ago I was looking through my library and noticed a book I had read years ago. It was a compilation of the best writings of Catherine Marshall. I decided to reread some of them and God used one of the articles to teach me about “mercy” prayers.

Often we forget that God’s love is unlimited. When we notice weaknesses in the lives of the people we live or work with, we can become impatient. We wonder why they don’t apply the Biblical truths that would surely help them live more consistently. We pray for them (maybe), but seldom do we remember God’s mercy and grace.

After reading Catherine Marshall’s book, I began to pray “mercy” prayers. Just a simple prayer like,

Lord, have mercy on ______.

Many times we don’t even know how to pray, we just know something is not right. But God, who knows all things, knows exactly what the situation is. When we pray, “Lord have mercy,” He will intervene and answer our prayer in the best possible way.

For years I prayed for two little girls whose parents were not following Jesus. Many nights, I would pray, “Lord have mercy on those two little girls, they didn’t ask to be brought into the world.” One week, things began to change – God had mercy on them. Today, through amazing circumstances, the mother is following Jesus, they are living in a stable environment and the girls are lavished with love. God cares and loves more than we can possibly imagine.

I encourage you to begin to pray “mercy” prayers when you notice people’s weaknesses. It so much better than being judgmental or critical.

Lord Jesus, You are loving and Your mercy endures forever. Even though our own love is often so shallow, when we intercede for your mercy on the lives you bring across our path, You will answer. Thank You so much! Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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Search me, O God, and know my heart; test my thoughts. Point out anything in me that makes you sad, and lead me along the path of everlasting life Psalm 139:23-24

Confession of sin is necessary for fellowship with God and revival among God’s people. The root meaning of the word “confess” is “to say the same as.” Confession, then, is agreeing with God about your sin.

If you click on the Related Article below, you will find a series of questions to help you think through areas of your life that need cleansing. As you read these questions and are convicted of sin, confess at once to God. Then you can claim His cleansing and forgiveness.
https://thoughts-about-god.com/reflecting_/personal-revival

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness 1 John 1:9

Be sure to name your sin to God. You could say, “Lord, I have not put You first in my plans” or “I have neglected Your Word and prayer” or “I was impatient with my spouse this morning.” Do not make the least excuse for sin of any kind in your life. Proverbs 28:13 says,

He (or she) who conceals his sins does not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them finds mercy.”

You may wish to write down the specific sins that come to mind as you read the questions. Then when you are finished confessing, tear the paper into bits and throw it away as a reminder that God does indeed cleanse you from “all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9b). Embrace the promise of Psalm 102:12,

As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.”

Personal revival begins today – if you desire. Begin your personal revival today.

Father, You are holy and want us to live holy lives. As You know, Lord, we so often rationalize actions and attitudes. I ask, Father, that each person who reads this devotional will take the time to go through the questions and allow You to point out anything that displeases You, then confess it and allow You to fill them with the Holy Spirit. Amen.

by Katherine Kehler
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Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume youIsaiah 43:1,2

Fear not. Those two words are found in the Bible sixty-two times.

Fear not, we are told — but what about when we get a phone call to tell us that our loved one has a terminal disease? Fear not — but what if your spouse loses his job? Fear not — but what about when you alone with no one to protect you?

What do you do when the waves of fear begin to engulf your entire being? How do you “Fear not?

First, talk to God. He will bring assurances and peace to your mind. Don’t call or text someone until after you have talked to the Almighty. Talk to Him about your fear. Ask Him what to do next. He knows what has happened, and talking to Him will calm you down and give you His perspective. Ask Him for strength, for wisdom, for peace, for His provision, and for direction. (Philippians 4: 19.) Then do the next thing — whatever He puts in your mind. Remember, take one day at a time, and trust Him each step of the way.

Here is a personal example. While I was driving home one dark, rainy evening, a car making a left hand turn at an intersection drove right into the front side of my car. This was my first car accident. When the car finally came to a stop, I said to the Lord, “What do I do now, Lord?” He sent a man to my car who asked if I was OK. He then phoned the police and my husband and daughter. I was surprised — I was not afraid.

God sent someone to take care of me. I was not afraid. The car was a write-off, but I was not hurt.

He will take care of you, too, no matter what happens, because He loves you. Read Isaiah 43:1,2 again.

Talk to God about your fears right now. He cares.

Father, You are an ever present help in trouble. You have created us and know our tendency to fear, but You ask us to turn to You because You want to help us. Thank You for Your love, mercy, peace, and strength. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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The book of Acts is exciting! Miracles happen in every chapter. Although I have read through the entire Bible every year for over twenty-five years, God always opens my eyes to amazing new insights. This year I noticed the various ways (not just one) in which God chose to speak to His followers. Read about them.

God spoke to His followers through angels.

An angel of the Lord said to Philip. . .”(Acts 8:26)
An angel of the Lord came to him and said. . . ” (Acts 10:2)
The angel struck Peter on the side and woke him up ‘Hurry! Get dressed and put on your sandals.’” (Acts 12:7)

God spoke to His followers through visions.

The Lord spoke to Ananias in a vision.” (Acts 9:10)

God spoke to His followers through His Holy Spirit.

During this time the Holy Spirit said to them. ‘Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul to do a special work for which I have chosen for them.’” (Acts 13:2)

The Lord spoke to His followers directly.

The next night the Lord came and stood by Paul. He said, ‘Be brave!’” (Acts 23:11)

Had you noticed that before?

I reflected on these verses and wondered why God opened my eyes to the fact that He did not (and does not) use just one or two ways to speak to His followers. The answer was,

“Don’t limit God to your incomplete knowledge of Him.”

We have the tendency to do that, don’t we?

Father God, thank You for opening our eyes and teaching us new truths and showing us new insights about Yourself. Help us to keep on being learners. Prevent us from trying to put You in our man-made boxes. You are so great! Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
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“I want to know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His suffering” Philippians 3:10

How are you doing today?

Is everything going great or are you struggling with a broken relationship? Or perhaps you have an incurable disease – maybe something worse.

Some parts of our life’s journey are painful. Recently the Lord gave me an insight into suffering that I would like to share with you. It was very helpful to me.

God is faithful – and will walk with us each step of the journey.

I had an experience that was very painful. I found that even though I had long forgiven the people involved, painful memories kept coming back. I asked the Lord about this,

How can I stop those memories from coming back?”

He reminded me of the verse in Philippians,

I want to know Him and the power of His resurrection and the fellowship of His suffering.”

He told me to thank Him for the horrid experience because through this experience, I had the privilege of “the fellowship of Christ’s suffering.”

I was getting to know Him in a deeper way – in a way I wouldn’t have if I had not gone through this.

We often pray for the power of His resurrection, but do we ever pray for the fellowship of His suffering? Jesus our Master said we could expect trouble if we follow Him. We shouldn’t be surprised!

Father, we want to know You. Thank You for reminding me about the “fellowship of His suffering.” Thank You for the painful times in life. Thank You for walking with us each step of the way. Amen

by Katherine Kehler
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“The one who calls you is faithful and He will do it” 1Thessalonians 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
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“Because the Lord God helps me, I will not be dismayed. Therefore, I have set my face like flint to do his will, and I know that I will triumph” Isaiah 50:7

For years my husband Marvin had a pilot’s license for small planes. He enjoyed flying very much.

One summer, he and three other men decided to fly to a conference in Saskatchewan, two provinces east of us. Before taking off, Marvin started the plane, checked all the instruments, and set his course on the compass. After crossing the Rocky Mountains, they planned to stay overnight in a city near the Alberta border.

They took off and everything seemed to be proceeding smoothly. However, Marvin hadn’t realized that when he set his compass, the needle was a fraction off center. By the time it came time to land, it was getting dark (Marvin wasn’t licensed to fly at night) and Marvin realized he was off course. The four of them had had a great time talking and laughing and never noticed.

Now they were lost. The mountains were much higher than his map indicated they should be, and their destination city was nowhere in sight. A fraction of a degree off on the compass when they started flying had taken them way off course when it was time to land. What seemed like a small, insignificant error could have cost them their lives.

However, happily they were able to land safely in a small town where they spent the night. The next day they flew on to their conference.

Life is like that. If we don’t allow Jesus to set our compass (course) each morning, we can begin heading slightly off course. It may seem insignificant today and even tomorrow, but where will we be next year?

Keep your eyes on Jesus, our leader and instructor” (Hebrews 12:2).

Father, thank You for Your Holy Spirit, who keeps nudging us to keep on a straight and narrow course. Thank You for Your Word, which is the “light to our path.” Help us heed Your voice. Help us to listen.  Amen.

by Katherine Kehler
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What is Wisdom?

  1. The quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgment; the quality of being wise.
  2. The soundness of an action or decision with regard to the application of such experience, knowledge, and good judgment.

Definition of Wise:

Having the power of discerning and judging properly as to what is true or right; possessing discernment, judgment, or discretion.

The Bible says:

“Get wisdom, get insight.” Proverbs 4:5

Why Should we get Wisdom?

Wisdom provides true and lasting happiness–something we are all striving for.

Proverbs 3:13 says,

“Happy is the man who finds wisdom and the man who gets understanding. It is the key to lasting happiness.”

Proverbs 19:8 says,

“He who gets wisdom loves himself.”

Proverbs 16:16 puts it,

“How much better to get wisdom than gold, to get insight rather than silver! “

Proverbs 8:20 says,

“I (Wisdom) lead in the way of righteousness…”

Proverbs 3:17b states,

“Her (Wisdom) ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.”

Proverbs 4:7 says,

“Wisdom is the principal thing;  therefore  get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding”.

What are the Characteristics of a Person who has Wisdom?

Proverbs 9:10 says,

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.”

The wisdom that leads to life and ultimate joy begins with knowing and fearing God.

Proverbs 11:2 says,

When pride comes, then comes disgrace; but with the humble is wisdom.

The wise person is characterized by humility.

Wisdom consists in knowing and doing the commandments of God. Jesus said that hearing and doing God’s Word is godly wisdom.

Wisdom also includes sensitive, mature judgment or discernment.

Colossians 1:9 says,

We have not ceased to pray for you, that you may be filled with knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding.”

How Do We Get Wisdom?

Desire it with all your heart.

Proverbs 4:8,

“Prize her (wisdom) highly and she will exalt you; she will honor you for your embrace.”
Wisdom must be valuable to us.

Saturate yourself with the Word of God.

Psalm 19:7.

“The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.”

Pray for wisdom.

James 1:5 says,

“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God.”

Think about the brevity of your life.

Psalm 90:12, says,

“So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.”

We must come to Jesus. Jesus is the wisdom of God.

Colossians 2:3 says,

“In Him are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.”

Father God, you are the source of all godly wisdom and we desire it with all our hearts. We ask that you will fill your people with your wisdom. Amen

This article has been condensed from an article by John Piper.

By Katherine Kehler
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“Do not be afraid of them; the LORD your God himself will fight for you” Deuteronomy 3:22

We were driving our son’s quad on the trail through the forest in Northern Alberta. Wild roses, blue bells, wild strawberries and other plants blanketed the soil under the tall, slender Aspens. It was very peaceful and we were truly enjoying the ride.

And then, just ahead of us, we saw a mother grouse and her baby chicks scurrying across our trail. The chicks were scurrying as fast as their toothpick thin legs would carry them; however, the mother stood her ground, her tail feathers fanned out, her neck feathers ruffled. She was positioned to protect her family! We stopped the quad and watched.

The chicks had scattered on both sides of the trail and the mother began clucking rapidly, calling her chicks. Soon the chicks ran toward her and the whole family ran to hide in the underbrush.

A brave mother taking on a large four – wheeler; she was willing to give up her life for her little family. Mothers are like that.

But as I watched her, I thought of our Good Shepherd giving His life for His flock and of leaving the 99 sheep to look for the lost one. I thought about our Lord’s promise:

My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of My Father’s hand” (John 10:29).

Comforting, isn’t it?

I am so thankful to You Lord Jesus, for protecting us, Your little flock, Your children. Only when we get to heaven will we realize how often You saved us from harm. Thank You again. Amen

by Katherine Kehler
Used by Permission

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“These trials are only to test your faith, to see whether or not it is strong and pure. It is being tested as fire tests gold and purifies it – and your faith is far more precious to God than mere gold; so if your faith remains strong after being tried in the test tube of fiery trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day of His return”  1 Peter 1:7

I have to admit I love jewellery – gold, silver, diamonds and gems of all kinds. I don’t know why I like them. Maybe because they sparkle and shine brightly when the light catches them – maybe because they are valuable. I am pleased that in heaven we will be surrounded with gold, sapphires, rubies and pearls.

While soaking in the bathtub, I was reading and meditating on the above verse. We have gone through some major trials this past year and it felt like we were being tried in the test tube of fiery trials.

The Bible tells us that our faith is more valuable than pure gold. He is willing to put us through trials so we will be strong and pure. The impurities are burned out of our hearts so that we reflect Him who is glorious.

Recently my husband and I discussed whether or not we are different as a result of the months of testing. We agreed that we are more joyful. We are also more tender and in love with Christ and each other. Christ has become more real to us. And that is a good thing.

Would we have chosen these trials? No. Are we thankful for what He has done and is still doing in our lives?  Absolutely.

How about you? If you are going through a time of testing right now, don’t despair. God is purifying you so you will reflect on Him more. And that is a good thing.

Father, purify our hearts. Make us wholly Yours. May our lives reflect Your radiance wherever we go. Amen.

By Katherine Kehler
used by permission

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Thoughts by All thoughts by Katherine Kehler Thoughts by Women