Category: <span>thoughts by Vonette Bright</span>


“Trust the Lord with all your heart, and do not rely on your own insight. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” Proverbs 3:5 & 6


Trusting God means putting your life into His hands, even when you don’t know the outcome!

Janice couldn’t believe her 21-year-old son had cancer. She’d always told Jeremy to trust God.  But this was tough!  Wonderfully, his surgery was a complete success.  They got all the cancerous tissue.

It was a year later when the doctor’s examined Jeremy and found more cancer.  Janice could hear God’s voice speaking to her. “Will you trust Me in ALL things? Will you give it ALL to Me?”  

It took some time, but Janice was finally able to say to the Lord, “Jeremy is Your child, he is Yours in life and in death.”

The Bible says emphatically: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart.” With ALL your heart. Rest in Him today, my friend!

By Vonette Bright
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Further Reading

  The Trust Factor

Jesus is Always There

•  Salvation Explained


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

It was something Barry felt he had to do.

The time had come for him to take a stand against the board’s wrongful business decisions.
So he resigned from his job.  That was months ago.  And his wife, Olivia, was growing impatient.
She prayed and asked others to pray.  But nothing happened.  The waiting became harder.

One morning Olivia read Isaiah 49, which says,
Then you will know that I am the LORD, for they shall not be ashamed who wait for Me.”

God showed her through His Word that peace was in resting, knowing, and depending upon the LORD and in God’s perfect timing.

Waiting can be hard and Olivia doesn’t know when Barry will be working…
But she does know she’ll be able to tell about God’s faithfulness because she waited on Him.

Yes, dear one, walk by faith, not by sight.

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


FURTHER READING

How to be sure God Listens to your Prayers

How to have a “Quiet Time”

What Should Be Included in Prayer?


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“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come.” 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV)


Television commercials couldn’t be more clear! The message is almost always, “It’s all about you!” And for a product that’s the greatest sales strategy.

Gwen’s life was pretty much on that same track. It was about her career. Her possessions. Her priorities. But you know what? It didn’t make her happy. No. In fact, she grew more and more discontent.

But when Gwen’s friend Leah introduced her to the Lord, “the change was incredible!”  Her friends noticed it immediately. She began to truly care about them. To reach out in friendship. Even her facial expression “beamed” with a new-found joy.

Dear friend, there is true contentment.  And it’s all about knowing and sharing Jesus.

By Vonette Bright
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Further Reading

•  Continuous Partial Attention Is your prayer time undistracted?

How did Jesus Pray?

•  Salvation Explained


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Jeremiah  29:11, God says, “I know the plans I have for you. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”


That verse became LaVerne Farmer’s anchor when life nearly came completely apart.

She started married life intending to be a Super Mom.

She threw herself into school, church, and community activities hoping they’d bring her satisfaction.

Everything looked fine on the outside, but LaVerne was frustrated, overwhelmed and empty.

In her searching for answers and peace, LaVerne increased her Bible reading.

The more she read, the more she prayed.  And God blessed that. She learned from the Bible how to place everything in God’s hands and to rest in His plan.

Yes, dear one, God DOES have a wonderful plan for your life!  Completely trust Him.

LaVerne Farmer:  author – I Am Not a Desperate Housewife

By Vonette Bright
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Further Reading

Getting Life Back on Track by Marvin Kehler

Did I Hear You Correctly Lord? – My dreams were too small for God

•  Salvation Explained


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Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” Colossians 3:12


Valentina was reared believing there was no God.  She was born in Siberia as a member of the Sakha tribe.  One of her closest relatives was even a witch doctor.  But then missionaries came to live in their village.  For years Valentina’s family watched as the missionaries sacrificed much for her own son Nick and ten other village young people.  They asked for nothing in return.  The missionaries’ love for Valentina’s family was genuine.  It spoke truly of God’s love.  Eventually, her entire family received Christ!

Now, Valentina’s home is a model of authentic servanthood, hospitality and grace.  Harshness and bitterness are things of the past.  Today, there’s a new song in Valentina’s heart.  She knows there is a God… and that He loves her!

Dear one, God loves you too.  Share that news today.

by Vonette Bright
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“I waited patiently for the LORD; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear and put their trust in the LORD.”  Psalm 40:1-3

Florida is famous for sinkholes that appear overnight, without warning.  However, sinkholes are the culmination of a long process.  The ground water dries up and the earth loses its support.  Everything caves in and an ugly pit is formed.

Author Mary Southerland found herself at the bottom of an ugly pit called depression.  Her outward appearance shouted success.  But her soul screamed despair.

But she wisely chose to take her sadness to God in prayer.  Mary learned God’s light can still shine in life’s sinkholes.  No matter how dark it may seem, He can fill the void.

If that’s you, dear one, it’s time to cry out to God.  He’s there waiting for you with open arms to come to Him in prayer.  He’ll fill the sinkhole in your life with hope for a better tomorrow.

BOOK: Sandpaper People: Dealing With the Ones Who Rub You the Wrong Way
by Mary Southerland   http://www.marysoutherland.com

By Vonette Bright
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Further Reading

•   Struggles, Despair

•  Stories:  Why God

•  Salvation Explained


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There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” 
1 John 4:18
(NIV)


Heidi was terrified for her teenage daughter who had run away because of her mother’s restrictions on her life.  Her mother did not know how to show love.  Now, mom was full of fear.

Tears rolled down Heidi’s face as she promised God she would change.  She promised to go to church.  She promised to love God.

Heidi tried to keep her promises.  Attending church she learned God’s perfect love casts out fear.

At home one evening, she bowed her head and invited Jesus into her heart.  Then quietly, the front door opened.  Her daughter huddled against the door.  Heidi rushed to hug her and tell her daughter she loved her.  Her daughter begged to be forgiven for running away.  And that night, love replaced fear.

Dear friend, give your fear to Jesus.  He will give you peace.

By Vonette Bright
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Further Reading

•  A Bible Study on How God Demonstrates His Love

  A Study on the Heart of God by Sylvia Gunter (Alphabet)

•  Salvation Explained


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Psalm 68: 19 says,
“Praise the Lord;
Praise God our Savior!
For each day He carries us in His arms.”


Diane knows that God may sometimes use His followers to be His loving arms.

You see, Diane’s daughter, Annie, suffered for months with a paralyzed stomach.
The family searched long and hard for a cure.

They really needed God to carry them when they were down.
So God sent some of Diane’s friends to encourage them and help with chores.
Diane said, “That’s such an encouragement when you’re down and discouraged.”

Friend, make yourself available to God.
Be His loving arms by caring for and comforting others.

When we suffer, God becomes present to us by placing a friend’s arm upon our shoulders.

By Vonette Bright
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Further Reading

19 Ways to Encourage Others

•  Four Ways to Pray for Friends and Family

•  Salvation Explained


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Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes,” 1 Corinthians 13:6-7


Bill Rieser didn’t know what to think.  His wife Carolyn was almost unrecognizable!  Days earlier she learned of his affair and they planned to divorce.  But after much prayer, she was smiling and reflected God’s peace and confidence.

Carolyn looked him in the eye and said,  “God would never give up on you.  And I’m not going to give up on you.  God can forgive you for anything you’ve ever done.  And so can I”

She was willing to give their marriage another chance if he was willing to give his life to Christ.  Yes, Bill prayed to receive Christ.  And they’ve just celebrated their 25th anniversary!  Bill admitted, “We’re more in love with each other now than at any other point in our lives.”

Dear one, give your marriage to God and don’t give up.
He’s the Great Physician who can heal marriages, too!

By Vonette Bright
Used by Permission
They Called Me ‘’White Jesus™ by Bill Rieser

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Further Reading

   Setting a Proper Foundation for Marriage, Family and Life by Ed Becker

•  Why is my Marriage in a State of Conflict?

•  Salvation Explained


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Trust the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make straight your paths. Proverb 3: 5 – 6


Pastor Ike witnesses a miracle every Sunday.  It happens when he stands in his pulpit to preach.  He spends almost every other minute of his life in a wheel chair.

You see Ike has broken his neck three times. Once in Vietnam, another in an automobile accident.  The third time occurred when an iron beam crushed him.  The doctors said he’d never walk again.

But during his recovery, he prayed,

Lord, I’m yours, for whatever I might still be good for.  But please let me stand in the pulpit if I am to preach.”

God granted that prayer.  And Pastor Ike praises God for getting his attention.

Dear friend, God wants your attention too!  Read your Bible.  Praise and thank Him for working in your life.  Expect your miracle!

By Vonette Bright
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Further Reading

•   Up from Depression  – Barbara Epp shares her journey with depression and the misconception that Christians shouldn’t get depressed

•  Suffering – Spiritual principles to meditate on during hard times

•  Salvation Explained


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It was as though someone just hit her. The thought that she could die from cancer was terrifying.


“The cords of death entangled me; the torrents of destruction overwhelmed me. The cords of the grave coiled around me; the snares of death confronted me. In my distress I called to the LORD; I cried to my God for help. From his temple he heard my voice; my cry came before him, into his ear.” – ” reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters. He rescued me from my powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me.” Psalm 18:4-6; 16&17

It was as though someone just hit her. The thought that she could die from cancer was terrifying. Laura grabbed her Bible off the hospital nightstand. She began frantically paging through it, crying out to God for help. Thankfully, the words of scripture comforted her.

Cancer and death were Laura Walker’s powerful enemies. But the author clung to God’s promise of rescue. God’s word filled her with peace. She didn’t know if rescue meant physical healing. Or maybe it meant the ultimate healing: taking her home to heaven. Either way, she was rescued. Death could never touch her cancer-free soul.

Friend, God has promised never to leave or forsake you. Through sickness or health!  Through adversity or blessing. And now fourteen years later, Laura can still testify to God’s faithfulness.

Reconstructing Natalie (Women of Faith Novel of the Year) by Laura Jensen Walker
http://www.laurajensenwalker.com

by Vonette Bright
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Further Reading

•  Life’s Lessons can Come from Unexpected Places

•  We Went on a Journey – a cute story about expanding our territories

•  Salvation Explained


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Many years ago, a few women met to read scriptures.
They came upon Malachi 3:3.
It says,

“He will sit like a refiner of silver, burning away the dross.”

So, one woman decided to view for herself the process of purifying precious metals.
She wanted to see how it was like God’s love for us.

Well, the silversmith sat, just as the scriptures indicated.
He kept his eye fixed on the furnace, watching the impurities burn away.

Dear one, can you picture that?
God must purify us to burn away the garbage in our life, but won’t go beyond what we can bear.

Then, the man said the process wasn’t complete until he could see his own image reflected in the silver.
And that’s the way it is with God in your life too!

By Vonette Bright
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Further Reading

Good News for You

Dealing with Despair

•  Salvation Explained


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As the Bible says,  “In everything, give thanks.”


When he (Jesus) saw them, he said, “Go, show yourselves to the priests.” And as they went, they were cleansed. One of them, when he saw he was healed, came back, praising God in a loud voice. He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him and he was a Samaritan. Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?” Then he said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”  Luke 17:14-19

I love the Bible story of the ten lepers Jesus healed.  Those outcasts were miserable, falling apart, and isolated.  They were hated, feared and despised.  Then Jesus healed them.  He gave them new skin, new lives, and new hope.

Nine of them ran towards town anxious for others to see them – to receive their approval and acceptance.

But one returned to Jesus. He fell at His feet, thanking God for the incredible gift of a new life.

Of course that begs the question, which kind of leper are you? God is constantly in your life,  providing for daily need, healing you, blessing your life. So do you run toward others or toward God?

Friend, prayer is much more than making requests to God. As the Bible says,  “In everything, give thanks.”

by Vonette Bright
Used by Permission
Inspired by Radical Gratitude – by Ellen Vaughn, Zondervan Publishing.

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Further Reading

•  God WILL take care of you

 Jesus is Always There!

•  Salvation Explained


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“But He was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed.” Isaiah 53:5 (NIV)

The Bible says, referring to Christ’s death on the cross: Jesus “was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins.”

When Barb Boswell suffered through breast cancer, she felt pierced too.
After her painful ordeal, God reminded her that Christ was pierced on her behalf.
It was Good Friday, the day we remember the crucifixion of Jesus.

Oh dear one, God used both piercings for His glory.

Through faith we know Christ rose again.  His suffering was for you, to make a way to God.
For Barb, cancer was a life-changing experience, which God has used.
She now reaches out to other cancer survivors with the story of God’s love and grace.

Take a few minutes to read Isaiah 53.

It will put all your sufferings, all your “piercings” into perspective.

Every Time I Turn Around, I Catch a Glimpse of God! By Barb Boswell  http://www.barbboswell.com/

By Vonette Bright
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Isaiah 53 New International Version (NIV)

53 Who has believed our message
    and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?
He grew up before him like a tender shoot,
    and like a root out of dry ground.
He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,
    nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.
He was despised and rejected by mankind,
    a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.
Like one from whom people hide their faces
    he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

Surely he took up our pain
    and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
    stricken by him, and afflicted.
But he was pierced for our transgressions,
    he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
    and by his wounds we are healed.
We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
    each of us has turned to our own way;
and the Lord has laid on him
    the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed and afflicted,
    yet he did not open his mouth;
he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
    and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
    so he did not open his mouth.
By oppression[a] and judgment he was taken away.
    Yet who of his generation protested?
For he was cut off from the land of the living;
    for the transgression of my people he was punished.[b]
He was assigned a grave with the wicked,
    and with the rich in his death,
though he had done no violence,
    nor was any deceit in his mouth.

10 Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,
    and though the Lord makes[c] his life an offering for sin,
he will see his offspring and prolong his days,
    and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand.
11 After he has suffered,
    he will see the light of life[d] and be satisfied[e];
by his knowledge[f] my righteous servant will justify many,
    and he will bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,[g]
    and he will divide the spoils with the strong,[h]
because he poured out his life unto death,
    and was numbered with the transgressors.
For he bore the sin of many,
    and made intercession for the transgressors.

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


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“Whoever loves his brother lives in the light, and there is nothing in him to make him stumble.” 1 John 2:10


Chelsea moved into a rough neighborhood because it was all she could afford. She decided with God’s help to shine the Light of Christ in this spiritually dark area.

She began by hosting a gathering in her building, but her neighbors didn’t trust new people. Then one Friday night, things changed.
An explosion rocked her building.  There was panic everywhere!  Chelsea quickly prayed to God for courage and direction.  She called the fire department and screamed for help in an effort to rescue a woman who had passed out.  That woman’s life was saved.

Because Chelsea had shown she cared, most of her neighbors responded favorably to her next invitation. She even saw three of them come to Christ!

Friend, God may have you in a dark place for a purpose. Shine the light of Christ wherever you go!

by Vonette Bright
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Further Reading

•  Don’t Limit God

•   Serving the Lord Wholeheartedly

•  Salvation Explained


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