Category: <span>thoughts by Mary Pinckney</span>

But those who wait on the Lord Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31

Sometimes we just need to stop, breathe and listen to what God is saying. Life can be so busy at times that we miss the important instructions we need to go forward. Give yourself permission to sit still and enjoy the stillness of the moment.

That brief pause may hold the key to the breakthrough you have been awaiting.

Lord teach us how to be still and wait in your presence. Teach us how important it is to listen for your still small voice in the midst of our daily routine.  Thank you for always being available for us. In Jesus name, Amen

Grace and Peace,
By Mary Pinckney

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Further Reading

•  How to Have a ‘Quiet Time’ with God

•  How To Be Sure God Listens To Your Prayers

•  Salvation Explained


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Thought – Is there a specific fear or doubt that has been grabbing hold of you recently?


Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.” – Hebrews 12:1

It takes courage to face the truth about yourself — your fears, doubts, and insecurities.
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It takes courage to admit you are wrong when you have hurt someone.
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It takes courage to stand up for righteousness in the midst of what is popular and accepted.
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It takes courage not to defend yourself when you know you are innocent.
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It takes courage to love those that spitefully use and abuse you.
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It takes courage to forgive others so that you can be forgiven.
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It takes courage to believe in a God you can’t see.
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It takes courage to trust that God is in total control when everything around you is in total chaos.

When we walk by faith, we are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses. They walked the same walk before us.
Many of them did not get to see the promises of God fulfilled on this side of Heaven. They died still believing that what God promised would be theirs.

These men and women of God faced major challenges because of what they believed, but they still believed. Their lives were shared with us in the scriptures to encourage and inspire us not to quit in tough times. Let us therefore strip off every weight and every sin that so easily distracts us. Let us lay down our will and become heroes of faith for those that will follow
us.

Father, we desire to do your will in the midst of tough situations that we face daily. We want so much to live a life that is pleasing to you. We desire to follow the example of so many others that have gone before us. Their faith walk showed us how courageous they were as they stood for what they believed. May we walk in that same courage as we continue in our journey before you. In Jesus name, Amen.

Thought – Is there a specific fear or doubt that has been grabbing hold of you recently? Bring it to Jesus and pray for His courage to fill your heart today

By Mary Pinckney
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Further Reading

Going Deeper with God

There is Nothing Beyond Your Reach – by Mark Doyle

•  Salvation Explained


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How do you keep going during chaos?


I struggled with finding the answer to this question for years. As I inquired of the Lord, He began to show me answers through the life of Jesus.

As soon as Jesus heard the news, he left in a boat to a remote area to be alone. But the crowds heard where he was headed and followed on foot from many towns.  Jesus saw the huge crowd as he stepped from the boat, and he had compassion on them and healed their sick.”  Matthew 14:13-14 NLT

Jesus withdrew to be alone after receiving the news that His cousin John the Baptist was beheaded but upon seeing the crowd He turned and had compassion on them. Compassion is defined as a feeling of wanting to help someone who is sick, hungry or hurting.  Jesus wanted to ensure that the crowd had what they needed even at a time He was in need. The disciples wanted to send the crowd away but Jesus commanded that they be fed, pointing out that what they needed was within their ability to handle.

Too often, God is asking us to serve others but our own selfish ambitions get in the way. We are so concerned about our own needs and focused on our own insecurities until we miss the multiplication that is possible when God is with us. It is not within our own power to always meet the needs of the crowd. The key is recognizing God is always the source.  When we come to Him admitting our insufficiency, He takes what we have and multiplies it.

Jesus knowing the needs of the people did not turn them aside, He laid His own need aside to ensure the people were taken care of. After doing so, He continued to a place of solitude to pray.  Why is this significant when it comes to keeping it together? We can’t give out daily and not take time to replenish. This is faulty thinking. Anyone that has ever driven a car knows after driving for miles the car will run out of gas. To get more service from that car it must be refilled repeatedly. This is the same for each of us.

Jesus making time to withdraw and pray helped to keep Him connected to His source. It gave Him the power, the grace, the instructions and the wisdom to continue doing the will of the Father. Jesus knew His assignment. He knew daily meetings with His Father were required to ensure He could continue.

The death of John the Baptist is significant because Jesus was hurt by the loss of His cousin and friend. John the Baptist knew He was the Son of God sent to save mankind. As we take this into consideration we find that Jesus had emotions. He did not allow His emotions to hinder Him from doing the will of the Father. He understood His emotions had a place but it was not to move Him from His assignment. Again, this was evident when He saw the crowd. He allowed His purpose to lead.

As we study the life of Jesus we find the answers we need to keep it together when our world turns topsy-turvy. We learn that there is a place for our emotions and a proper way to deal with our own pain in life. We learn the importance of maintaining daily intimacy with God. We learn that we cannot function in our assignment without daily connection with our Father.  He holds the key to keep us together even when we are falling apart.

By Mary Pinckney
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Further Reading

•  Salvation Explained

•   Why Worry Yourself Sick? – by Muriel Larson

•  Dealing with Despair

 


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“Praise the LORD, who is my rock. He trains my hands for war and gives my fingers skill for battle.” Psalm 144:1 (NLT)


Every day you will face challenges that try to move you away from God’s plan and purpose for your lives. You will be tempted to act out of character. You will be tempted to give in to the pride of your own hearts; relying on yourselves rather than fully relying on God.  Unfortunately, all of these decisions will put you in a position to lose the battle.

If you are to see victory over the obstacles you are currently facing, it will take you learning the battle strategy from the one who knows best. God has strategic weapons to dismantle every attack of the enemy. We find this true throughout the Old Testament readings.

Joshua won the battle of Jericho by marching around the city 7 times, then releasing a loud shout. Gideon was told he had too many men for the battle. He was then instructed to take 300 men with him. As they went blowing their trumpets, the Lord confused the opposing army and they began to fight themselves.  Jehoshaphat was told by the Prophet of the Lord, you will not have to fight in this battle, the Lord will fight for you. They proceeded to battle worshipping their God and the other army began to destroy themselves.

As you can see from these accounts, God does not fight like we fight. His weapons are much greater than ours. They are weapons of mass destruction; tearing down every stronghold, piercing between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires.

Today, instead of cowering down to the enemy of doubt, fear and insecurity. Instead of giving into the temptation to quit. Instead of allowing the whispers of the naysayers stop you in your tracks, I encourage you to fight back! You must stand and gird yourself with the full armour of God. Endure hardness as a good soldier and see those very obstacles demolished in your path.

When you allow God to be your defense, your strong tower, He can perfect all things that concern you.  After all, He has already equipped you with the weapons that work; prayer, worship, and the sword of the spirit which is the Word of God.

Do your battle on your knees today. Do your battle in worship. God will fight for you.

Father, thank You for teaching our hands to war. Too often, we fight from a place of our own strength not fully relying on, leaning into, and trusting You.  As we begin to change course, thank You for Your patience with us. Thank You for your power being made perfect in our times of weaknesses. May we look to You when we are weak to help us win the victory in every area of our lives. In Jesus name Amen.

By Mary Pinckney
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Further Reading

•  The Supernatural Power of Praise

•  God Listens to Us

•  Salvation Explained


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God set eternity in our hearts from the moment we got here. He knew we would need something to keep driving us forward.


And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” Hebrews 12:1-3 NIV

Born knowing He would die for the sin of mankind – that was the assignment given to Jesus. His life was already mapped out for Him before the foundations of this world were formed.  He knew that the sin of mankind would be placed on His shoulders. He knew He would be beaten and bruised for our transgressions and the chastisement of our peace would be placed upon Him.  His destiny was to lay down His life for a people of whom, many would reject Him.

Jesus was motivated by the joy of seeing us reconnected to God. His purpose was evident in His words as well as His actions.   Even though He struggled in the Garden of Gethsemane, He chose to keep going in spite of the pain that was on the horizon. His unselfish act kept Him focused on the end result. We can take lessons from the life of Jesus.

Just as Jesus was born with a purpose, so were you and I. God set eternity in our hearts from the moment we got here. He knew we would need something to keep driving us forward. When we take our eyes off what we think and feel and focus on those God has called us to reach, it should motivate us to keep moving forward as well. It is my prayer that the life of Jesus will bring comfort and hope to you as you continue towards your God-given purpose.  If you are struggling with what that purpose is today; take a moment and ask God to reveal to you His plan for your life.

Lord we want to take this time to thank you for the birth of your Son Jesus. Thank you for allowing Him to walk upon the Earth and be the example for us. May His attitude towards pleasing you and serving the purpose for which He came become our very own. In Jesus name, Amen.

Grace and Peace to you,

By Mary Pinckney
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Further Reading

•  God’s Plan – A Study on God’s Destiny for Me?

•   We Plan, God Directs

•  Salvation Explained


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Allow the Lord an opportunity to become your hiding place today.


You are a hiding place for me; You, Lord, preserve me from trouble, You surround me with songs and shouts of deliverance. Selah [pause, and calmly think of that]!” Psalm 32:7 (AMP)

Remember as a child having that one place you could hide and feel secure when you were afraid? It may have been under the bed, or in the closet. Wherever it was, you knew without a shadow of a doubt all would be well if you could just get there.

That is what worship, experiencing the presence of God, has become for me: a hiding place. As fear rears its ugly head I know that His presence is the one place I can run. While there, He comforts and reassures me that I am safe.

There is nothing more soothing than knowing the love of our Heavenly Father. He promises to never leave us nor forsake us. Granted, there may be times we feel as though He has neglected us, but He is always there. His Word is filled with precious promises to assure us of that fact. Here is another gentle reminder from Psalm 27:5, ”For in the day of trouble He will hide me in His shelter; in the secret place of His tent will He hide me.”

Allow the Lord an opportunity to become your hiding place today. Whisper a prayer, read about His promises in the book of Psalms, or listen to songs of praise that glorify God and His ability to work on your behalf. Allow Him an opportunity to reassure you and provide the answers you need. Most of all, allow His love to overshadow you.

Father, wrap us in your arms today, and hide us as the storms of life rage round about us. Reassure us that we are the apples of your eye and that you will never leave us nor forsake us. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.

When you are feeling frenzied today, before running to others for answers and comfort, consult the Lord.

How has the Lord revealed Himself to you as a place of shelter in your daily life?

By Mary Pinckney
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Further Reading

•  The Everlasting God

•  The Word of God and the Power of God

•  Salvation Explained


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“I will bless you with a future filled with hope—a future of success, not of suffering: . Jeremiah 29:11 CEV


We must be careful about comparing our lives to others. When we do, we tend to lose sight of what God is doing in our own lives. God is a God of purpose. He knows the plans and the future He has prepared for us. We should never underestimate His heart towards us.

Father grant us peace today about Your plans for us. Help us not to compare our journey to that of others but to take heart that You always has our best interest at heart. May we trust You at all times. In Jesus name Amen

By Mary Pinckney
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Love Your Neighbour

Random Acts of Kindness it is amazing how random acts of kindness affect those around you.

•  Salvation Explained


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“When my heart is overwhelmed.  Lead me to the rock that is higher than I. “  Psalm 61:2 NKJV


It gets so hard at times balancing every aspect of life; marriage, family, ministry, and career. Where do I find the time for me? Where do I find the time to commune with my Heavenly Daddy? So much comes into play on any given day. Sometimes I feel as though I am sinking, I am drowning in it all. Then I hear Your still small voice saying, “rest in me.”

I hear you calling me back to a place of stillness, a place of much needed peace. I hear you calling me to breathe and allow You to replenish me. I long for that time in Your presence, Lord. I long to be near You. You calm the raging emotions inside of me. Just as Jesus spoke peace to the wind and the waves in the Gospels, You still my overwhelmed heart. It is in Your presence I find fullness of joy and at Your right hand, pleasures forever more.

It is in the stillness that I find peace; I find continual hope. It is in the stillness that I find rest for my weary soul. Take delight oh my weary soul. Take delight in the presence of Abba Father. Take delight in His loving arms. If you find yourself in a similar place today, I challenge you to find rest in the Presence of Almighty God. It is in His Presence that we find renewed strength, peace, and hope.

Father, we long for Your unfailing love in our everyday lives. When we are running on empty, emotions are high, and life is overwhelming, lead us to the Rock that is higher than us. Lead us to that place of refuge and peace that we so long for. It is in You that we find rest. It is in You that we find hope. It is in You that we find peace.

When life seems to overwhelm you, take out a pen and pad and journal your thoughts.

Write a love letter to God telling Him how much you need His presence in Your life.

Grace and peace,

By Mary Pinckney
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Further Reading

•   How to have a “Quiet Time”

•   Praying the 23rd Psalm for Yourself and Others

•   Salvation Explained


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I know things are not going the way you planned.  I know that you thought you would be farther along by now.


And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.” Galatians 6:9

I know things are not going the way you planned.

I know that you thought you would be farther along by now.

I know that you are anxious to see the finished work.

In spite of what it looks like, keep your head up! Regardless to what you may be facing today, God is not slack concerning His promises.  Instead of focusing on what you see, begin to change your focus to what God has said. His Word will not come back to Him void, but it will accomplish everything He sent it out to accomplish.

Hold on; change is on the way. That change may not be in your outward circumstances immediately, but it will take place on the inside of you if you keep fighting, keep praying, and keep pursuing His will for your life. Your time of harvest is on the way. Don’t you dare give up!

Lord, it gets harder by the minute to keep a positive outlook when it seems everything is going haywire. Help us I pray to keep our focus tuned in to You and Your Word rather than our circumstances. It is in Your Word that we find hope and renewed strength. In Jesus’ name, we pray, Amen.

By: Mary Pinckney
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•  Making a Difference

•  God Is…

•  Salvation Explained


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Why am I discouraged? Why is my heart so sad? I will put my hope in God! I will praise Him again — my Savior and my God!” Psalm 42:11 (NLT)

When your heart has been shattered, it’s hard to make sense of all the broken pieces.

You cry out, wondering when the pain will end, when the heartaches will disappear. You have done all you can do, but relief seems so far away.

Today, take your eyes off the pain and look above. Hope lies in the beauty of every new day that is given. Take comfort in knowing that God allows new beginnings. Each day is a day for His grace to overshadow your painful past. It’s a day that leads to a better tomorrow.

You have been given a second chance at life, a second chance at love. It is in these moments when God’s hand is evident. He is able to mend the broken pieces and give you beauty for ashes. He is able to wipe away every tear that you shed and give you new life.

Will you choose to see His love through the pain of your yesterday? Or will you allow Him to open your eyes to the joys that surround you? It may seem as though your world is falling apart, but to God, it may just be falling into place. Nothing we encounter takes Him by surprise. In exchange for the broken pieces, He gives us renewed hope, a greater strength, and an abundance of His peace.

Lord, I pray for my brothers and sisters who have been struggling with broken relationships, broken dreams, or a broken heart. You see them and You are very aware of what they’re going through. I ask that You will minister healing and wholeness to them right now and allow them to see a glimpse of hope. You are the lover of their souls and You have their best interest at heart. I thank You for restoration. I thank You for renewed hope. In Jesus’ name, amen.

By Mary Pinckney
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•  Whatever You Do...
•  Who Will You Fight For?
•  Salvation Explained

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For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.” 2 Corinthians 4:17-18 NLT

Focusing on what’s right before us can trip us up.

As believers, we have been instructed to walk by faith and not by sight but the trouble comes in when what God said is not lining up with what is going on in our present circumstances.

When challenges arise we must incline our hearts to focus more on God’s commands. Remember, His word provides us hope, encouragement, and the strength to keep moving. The more we attend to what is going on around us, on social media, or the news for that matter, we fill our hearts with fear and uncertainties.

Proverbs 4:23 reminds us to guard our hearts with all diligence because out of it flows the issues of our lives. What we focus on will grow. I don’t know about you, but if I have a choice in what grows or becomes dominant in my life I would prefer it be the Word of God.

Fear torments. Fear paralyzed. If we are to reap the rewards God has promised we must gain control of our focus. The word lets us know that trouble does not last always. When it presents itself we must be quick to remember God is a very present help in the time of trouble instead of falling prey to fear. He may not deliver us quickly but He is at work behind the scenes, working out all things that concern us. The challenges we are facing right now are working for us to produce a great and a glorious reward. Can you hold on until it’s revealed? God is indeed at work on our behalf.

Lord, You see what we don’t see. You understand what we don’t understand. Help us to focus more on Your voice, Your Word rather than what we see. Help us to know Your ways. Help us to recognize Your voice. Remind us of Your plans to do us good and not evil. Strengthen our hearts as only a You can. In Jesus name Amen.

Grace and peace,

By Mary Pinckney
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Further Reading

•  He Guides Us
•  Truth – God’s truth remains the same from age to age,
•  Salvation Explained

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You can trust the Lord to protect you. He will not let you fall into harm.Proverbs 3:26 (ERV)

Trusting God has become a new buzz word.

It is thrown around so loosely that we forget it’s connotation. Anytime we are going through challenging times the first words off the lips of others is normally “Just trust God, it will work out.”

What does it really mean to trust God? I have found in my very own life that trusting God required me to put forth some type of action to show that I believed what God was saying to me. Trusting God required me to stand still at times and knowing with sheer confidence I did not have to be in control. I did not have to come to my own rescue. It assured me that I had help, a reliable source and strength backing me. Proverbs 3:26 here in the Amplified version paints this picture clearly; For the Lord shall be your confidence, firm and strong, and shall keep your foot from being caught [in a trap or some hidden danger].

I implore you today not to take trusting God lightly. He will always be by your side. He is a source of strength in our times of weakness. He is a shield and a buckler whenever we find ourselves in danger. He is a provider when we are in need. And most of all He loves us with an everlasting love. We can rely on His faithfulness. We can trust His heart towards us.

Father even when my trust in You begins to wane. Remind me of Your faithfulness in my life. In Jesus name Amen

By Mary Pinckney
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•   The Trust Factor
•    Pray and then Decide
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Jesus loves you with an everlasting love.

I have loved you, my people, with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself.Jeremiah 31:3 (NLT)

So often we take for granted the love of God. We often feel like there is no hope for us but I say to you today that regardless to where you have been, regardless to what you have done; God loves YOU.

Let the weight of your burdens rest upon His shoulders today. His sacrifice on the cross was the answer to your pain. No longer carry the weight of the world on your shoulders; walk in His grace, walk in His love.

Lord, thank you for always reminding me how You feel about me. I often struggle when it comes to recognizing and receiving Your love. Teach me to rest in the fact that You will never cast me aside. Your love for me will never fail. In Jesus name Amen

Reflections:

John 15:13 (NLT) “There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”

John 3:16 (NLT) “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”

Romans 5:8 (NLT) “But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.”

Psalm 8:4 (NIV)  “….what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?”

By Mary Pinckney
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Further Reading

•  The Gift of Forgiveness – by John William Smith
•  Where Do I Call Home? – A Refugee’s story.  Helen Loewen’s story
•  Salvation Explained

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Sometimes the smallest step in the right direction ends up being the biggest step of your life.

Tip toe if you must, but take the step!

You will get there! Don’t rush your process, there are plenty of lessons to learn along the way.

Trust that the Lord will guide you as you go.

The Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives.

Though they stumble, they will never fall, for the Lord holds them by the hand.” Psalm 37:23-24 (NLT)

By Mary Pinckney
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FURTHER READING

•  God’s Plan – A Study on God’s Destiny for Me?
•  Hearing God’s Voice – a Study by Charles Stanley

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


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This is what the Lord says: ‘There will be a special time when I show my kindness. Then I will answer your prayers. There will be a special day when I will save you. Then I will help you and protect you.’”
Isaiah 49:8 (ERV)

Many of us are experiencing challenging times right now.

Frustration rises as we pray and anxiously await answers from the Lord.  Tempers are flaring and many are probably contemplating giving up and letting go of their promises from the Lord.  I beseech you today my brothers and sisters to hold on, just a little while longer.

The Lord is at work in the midst of your situations.  He is moving on your behalf. Often times we try to tempt the hand of God by our temper tantrums, pity parties, and by issuing ultimatums; none of these will move God. He is only moved by our faith.  Whenever challenges arise, we must make it a point to remain in agreement with the Lord.

Today’s scripture reference stood out to me as I sought the Lord concerning some pressing issues. It immediately spoke hope and peace to my heart. I want to do the same for you today. The Lord says there is a special time, a special day when answers will be made known to us. He does everything according to His plan and His purpose for us.  It is up to us to trust His heart of compassion towards us.

I pray today that we will no longer look at what is not happening, but that we will focus on what You are doing in this season in our lives. Father, remind us that frustration sets in when we do things out of season.  Teach us to recognize what You are blessing right now and to work in that. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Thought: Find other scriptures in reference to God’s timing and write them out on index cards. When anxiety arises, pull them out and meditate upon them.

By Mary Pinckney
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FURTHER READING

•    Are you Ready?
•    Don’t Limit God

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


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