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Showing posts from January, 2015

The Road Leads Home, I Shall Not Fear

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The Road Leads Home, I Shall Not Fear:
"Cause me to hear Your lovingkindness in the morning, For in You do I trust; Cause me to know the way in which I should walk, For I lift up my soul to You." (Psalms 143:8)
When the path ahead of me looks dauntingicy-cold anxieties frozen over a ghastly tundra? Pull me into Your warm and welcoming Presence. I can't face these fears with my own strength, for apart from You I am nothing but a fearful, panicked mess. I need Your wings to cover me. I need Your hands to guide me. I need Your peace to quiet me.
"My people will dwell in a peaceful habitation, In secure dwellings, and in quiet resting places" (Isaiah 32:18)
You speak Your words of wonderful mercy, and my whole heart sighs a breath of relief. Because of the goodness pouring out from Your Heart, I am held securely in Your hands. No one shall remove me from this sacred dwelling place.
"My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to s…

Speak Victory, Not Defeat

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Speak Victory, Not Defeat:
"But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." (1 Corinthians 15:57)
Victory. This is where we stand. We walk a path each and every day paved by pierced hands. Those scars in His palms testify to His triumph. He's gained victory over deathtriumph over the grave, and power over sin. The dark defeat of death and Sheol could not keep Him contained. His glory and undeniable authority arose from the pitch-blackness, and now a banner of exultation waves exuberantly above our heads. His sacrifice and His overcoming are what give us hope and life. This is our freedom! This is our song! Christ our Lord gives us triumph all eternity long!

"In the Messiah, in Christ, God leads us from place to place in one perpetual victory parade." (2 Corinthians 2:14 MSG)
We parade the path of life! Not in fear and panic, but in perpetual peace and celebration! We needn't hobble through this life, when God has provided every …

Embrace the Journey

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Embrace the Journey:
"The way of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn, which shines ever brighter until the full light of day." (Proverbs 4:18)
One thing the Holy Spirit has been showing me in particular today is this: slow down, enjoy the moment, embrace His wondrous grace, and don't panic when your schedule gets thrown out the window. He's got everything under control. He is the One planning our lives. Every day we're faced with a choice. We can either choose to toil away at trying to finagle a perfect work schedule and completely miss all the beauty around us and within us, or we can laugh at God's surprises.
We can choose to live lives of pure joyLives that yield to His pacebreathe in His graceand ultimately seek His Face.
"Grow in grace and understanding of our Master and Savior, Jesus Christ. Glory to the Master, now and forever! Yes!" (2 Peter 3:18 MSG)
"Let everything that has breath and every breath of life praise the Lord! P…

Christ in Me: This is True Life

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Christ in Me: This is True Life:
"I have been crucified with Christ, and it is no longer I that live, but Christ living in me. That life which I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself up for me." (Galatians 2:20)
Yes, yes, yes! God's love is better than life itself. God's love is what brings life - eternal life, abundant life. God's love is what makes us new, makes us whole inside, gives us vibrancy in our eyes, and fills us with irreplaceable, imperishable joy. Nothing can ever separate us from His love. Nothing can ever weaken His love. Not even our deepest, darkest sins or secrets can hamper God's unconditional love. God knows the very depths of our hearts, and still He chose to make them His home. We don't have to "clean up" for Him to come in. He says, "Come just as you are. I'll take care of the rest." This is Christ living in us! This is what true living is all aboutGod is Lo…

His Mercy Reigns, His Mercy Rains

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His Mercy Reigns, His Mercy Rains:
"Cause me to hear Your lovingkindness in the morning, For in You do I trust; Cause me to know the way in which I should walk, For I lift up my soul to You. Deliver me, O LORD, from my enemies; In You I take shelter. Teach me to do Your will, For You are my God; Your Spirit is good. Lead me in the land of uprightness. Revive me, O LORD, for Your name’s sake! For Your righteousness’ sake bring my soul out of trouble." (Psalms 143:8-11)
My God, my Sovereign Lord, come empty me of all my fear and fill me with Thy Holy Word. I cling to Your promises and trust in Your mercy, for only You can save me - only You are worthy. My voice shall solely worship Your Great Name, God who makes runners from those who were lame.
Come touch these weak bonesmelt our heart-stonesMake us Your own people of lovemay we magnify our Father above.
Your mercy reigns in all the earth... Your mercy rains over our dry and crackled thirsty souls... Your mercy rainsYou&#…

More of You Less of Me

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More of You Less of Me:
"I pray to GOD —my life a prayer— and wait for what he’ll say and do. My life’s on the line before God, my Lord, waiting and watching till morning, waiting and watching till morning." (Psalm 130:5-6 MSG)
You hear my prayer, You're everywhere. You promise life, an end to strife. You're all I needYou're everything. May my life glorify You alone. I run to You, for You're my Home. I sit and wait for Your work in me. Come take this soul and set me free. Only Your freedom and joy will satisfy. So hear my prayer, my morning cry. I seek You God, for You're my desireCome lead me to Youcome take me higher. Amen.

-The Introverted Evangelist

His Love Runs Far and Deep

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His Love Runs Far and Deep:
"Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another." (1 John 4:7-11)
There are many times when I feel like I've messed up so terribly that maybe God's love for me is just a little weaker than it was on say, one of my good days. You know, the days when I get along with those around me and read His Word more? However, those days when I wake up, stub my toes on the bedside, forget to brush my hair or say a prayer, and enter the day with the haze of gloominess hanging over me? The enemy uses the inevitably fallen nature of …

I Will Rejoice and Be Glad

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I Will Rejoice and Be Glad:
"This is the day the LORD has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it." (Psalms 118:24)
As the sun peaks through the clouds and spills in through the windows, the day begins afresh again. Whatever yesterday held, and whatever today may present, all of everything is held in the hands of the Mighty One - He is omnipotent.
It's easy to fear when we don't know what the day will look like, but God assures us, "I know the plan. Trust Me. Stay close to Me, and I will guide you."
Each day contains ups and downs, highs and lows... Sometimes our lives may feel like a roller-coaster... Or perhaps a fractured vase about to shatter?
Whether the day be weathered by wind and waves or paved by peacefulness, may we always proclaim, "This is the day the Lord has made. Therefore, we will look beyond ourselves, beyond our circumstances, beyond our feelings, beyond our doubts, and unto the Father. Then, and only then, shall we find real peace and rej…

Remember That I am His Own

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Remember That I am His Own:
"Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God's unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy [for our failures] and find grace to help in good time for every need [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it]." (Hebrews 4:16 AMP)
When the day spins out of control, and my head thumps with frustration and fear, draw me near, O Lord. I'm so willing to worry, yet so hesitant to trust. My tightly clenched fists never want to release, but I must in order to receive Your peace. My anxious gaze darts back and forth from problem to problem, I shrink back at the uneasiness surrounding. I need to see it, the truth that You're the One leading the way.
"For this is God, Our God forever and ever; He will be our guide Even to death." (Psalms 48:14)
Help my eyes to turn from the discomforting disorder, and to be steadfastly fixed on You, my everlasting an…

Thy Will Be Done

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Thy Will Be Done:
"For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them." (Matthew 18:20)
May the cry of our united hearts resound in this place today. We're gathered here in Your house this day, O Lord, with one desire: to know You and make You known throughout the earth. We hunger to serve, to seek out those in need of Your saving grace. We're gathered here today, and with one voice we say, "YOUR Will be done, O Great Heavenly Father!"

-The Introverted Evangelist

I'm Overwhelmed by You

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At times, our speechlessness is a song to the very heart of God. He loves the melody of our awe-struck adoration.
"I will extol You, my God, O King; And I will bless Your name forever and ever. Every day I will bless You, And I will praise Your name forever and ever. Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; And His greatness is unsearchable." (Psalms 145:1-3)
O, Heavenly Father, I am so overwhelmed by Your unending goodness. Thank You for all that You do. You're so wondrous, and I shall praise Your Name forever. Amen.

-The Introverted Evangelist

Thankful for His Brightly Shining Goodness

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Thankful for His Brightly Shining Goodness:
"Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, And into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name. For the LORD is good; His mercy is everlasting, And His truth endures to all generations." (Psalms 100:4-5)
Looking up at the beautiful blue sky today, I'm reminded that God's faithfulness always transcends the trials. His light always shines brighter than the darkness around. In the times of trial and tribulation, we have a Strong Tower of refreshing, revitalizing hope.
"...be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ" (Ephesians 5:18-20)
Oh how the music in my soul plays so melodiously this day... This gift of a sunny day is a true relief and blessing in every way! The rains have past, but they watered my soul. And n…

He Has My Whole Life in His Hands

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He Has My Whole Life in His Hands:
"For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist." (Colossians 1:16-17)
Nothing slips out of Your care. You know my every thought; You count my every hair. You've known me from the very start; O God, pull me closer to Your heart. You calm my fears; You dry my tears. You're with me right now; before You I bow. O take this soul, for only You can make it whole.
You've revealed Your pure and gracious heart to me in fragments flecked throughout each day of this gift called life. I have no need of grumbling through my difficult days when on You my eyes fixedly gaze. You're my unshakeable foundation. You're my unsinkable joy.
You're the God of lovelight, and laughter, not of lawslegalities, and lethargy. You t…

Death Has No Hold on Me

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Death Has No Hold on Me:
"For our dying bodies must be transformed into bodies that will never die; our mortal bodies must be transformed into immortal bodies. Then, when our dying bodies have been transformed into bodies that will never die, this Scripture will be fulfilled: “Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting? ” For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power. But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ. So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless." (1 Corinthians 15:53-58)
I just love this passage of Scripture! It fans the burning flames of hopeful anticipation for our eternal home in heaven. This life we live today shall not last forever, so take heart! If you're struggling and suffering, look up! Look up to the Lord and smil…

Freely Forgiven

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Freely Forgiven:
"God’s raging anger won’t let up Until he’s made a clean sweep completing the job he began. When the job’s done you’ll see it’s been well done." (Jeremiah 30:24 MSG)
Hold up... That's not the kind of verse I normally put at the start of a devotional, now is it? Nope, not so much. However, this is because I was recently asked a question that brought me great revelation and an even deeper appreciation and awe of the true freedom and hope we have in Jesus Christ.
The question? How to explain verses like Jeremiah 30:24. How do we know for sure that we're forgiven, saved from death, and rescued from the punishment that all of our old messiness and shameful deeds would've brought on us?
I can recall that I would formerly have tried to rely on my own understanding to explain such things. But this time, my very firmly anchored soul did not jump to clutch whatever it could find to make me sound wise or like I have it all figured out. Let's face it: we'…