Taking Him at His Word

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He is Risen!

He is Risen, indeed!

Alleluia!

When I struggle to accept someone’s word it is because I have been tricked before. When my trust has been violated it makes it very difficult for the next person to get a fair shake. Even though I have trust issues for good reason, I have always been able to take God at His Word. I am thankful for that faith He planted in me through baptism and nurtured through the years.   I love His work in my life even if it is difficult during the process. Looking at the betrayal of Jesus and all the other painful events of Good Friday, I can see what God has done (and is doing) for me. Right now.

Today.

And He has done it for you, too!

On the Road,

Liz

Here are a few promises to hang onto:

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A work in progress…

encouragewThe other day I made a very public mistake. You may not have noticed it. I certainly didn’t notice it because if I had, I would not have done it. I am not a perfectionist by any means but when I share information I want it to be accurate, properly spelled, and all that.

Almost the entire day had gone by and finally someone pointed out that I had made a mistake. Actually, I had made several. (Oh how I hate when that happens!) Immediately, I got to work to correct it! And, sadly, it took several tries. For whatever reason, the initial person to point out the error was not able to assist in the correction. However, another person stepped in to stick with me through the process with a lot of patience, she was very pleasant and helpful.

I want to be that kind of person!

A complete stranger stepped in to work with me. How thoughtful and kind! And I wondered, “Am I the one who just points out mistakes or am I the person who will patiently stick with someone as they get it together?” Good question! Sometimes I am both!

I have noticed in myself that there are times I have a lot of compassion for others and there are other times I am so incredibly impatient. Sometimes it has to do with the kind of day I had or the amount of free time I have to help another person. And, sadly, sometimes it has to do with the person I am in conversation with or, at the very least, my perception of the person.

Sometimes I am so stingy with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, and gentleness!

But when I am on the receiving end of correction, am I approachable and teachable? Am I willing to listen to what someone has to say and consider it? Naturally, I am more willing to hear from someone I know and love and I know knows and loves me. But there are times a complete stranger, or even someone I don’t particularly like, has valuable insight for me. Can I hear it?

I have to practice receiving correction with grace and humility because it is not my inclination.  My first response is usually to be a little defensive but I have been working on that. There are numerous opportunities for me to improve on my response. What can I say? I am a work in progress!

Heavenly Father, give me your discernment when someone shares advice or correction with me. Lord, grant me discernment when I am inclined to share advice or correction with others! In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

On the Road,

Liz

p.s. Can you tell I am having too much fun with Canva?

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PrayerPoint ~ Self-control ~ March 11

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 NIV

Oh my. Self-control. Why is it is so difficult at times? But here is some amazing motivation:

Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.    1 Peter 5:8-9 NIV

The word picture in the above verse is powerful and motivating yet I still find myself willingly consenting to certain areas of sin.

Be self-controlled and alert. I do think that being alert is as important as being self-controlled. If I am not paying attention or “on alert” then it is so much easier for me to just get sucked into whatever is happening around me. If I am aware of my surroundings and remembering the goal or immersed in the Word, it is much easier to exercise self-control.

And in the end, self-control is something I need to be doing. But as a fruit of the Spirit, it is also a result of what the Holy Spirit is doing in my life. I have enough trouble in the area of self-control that I think I should not be refusing God’s help via the Spirit!

May your week be “Fruit Full”,

Liz

PrayerPoint ~ Gentleness ~ March 10

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 NIV

There is something to be said for gentleness. Might doesn’t make right when it comes to sharing your faith. Beating someone over the head with the Gospel isn’t good form. Period. Sharing the Truth of Jesus as Savior can and should be done lovingly and sometimes you might even use words. If you plan on “battling” with someone on issues of faith, then I would suspect that you aren’t being gentle. And while you might think you have won a “battle of words” you very likely witnessed a casualty or severe wounding on the field of Faith.

Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. 1 Peter 3:15a-16 NIV

Let me not be the “bull in the china shop”,

Liz

 

PrayerPoint ~ Faithfulness ~ March 9

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 NIV

Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.    Lamentations 3:22-23 NIV

Wow! Isn’t this one of the most amazing verses in Scripture? Today I saw it with completely new eyes! I have been familiar with this verse for many years but this morning it stunned me with God’s wonderful gift of faithfulness.

He loves me so incredibly I cannot get consumed by all that is around me. His compassions are always there. Always. Each and every morning His compassion for me is waiting for me and begins my day. He is so faithful, even when I am not.

Of course, God says it so much better than I do but I think it is helpful to restate some things in your own words so it really sinks into the heart and mind….

A rock solid promise.

For you and for me!

Celebrating His faithfulness!

Liz

PrayerPoint ~ Goodness ~ March 8

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 NIV

For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But if anyone does not have them, he is nearsighted and blind, and has forgotten that he has been cleansed from his past sins. 2 Peter 1:5-9

This passage leads us to another list–one that has a sense of increasing order. It almost reads like a cooking recipe:

Get out your faith.

Add some goodness.

Combine. Let stand for 10 minutes.

Sprinkle in some knowledge, self-control, and perseverance. Stir vigorously.

Pour on the godliness, brotherly kindness, and love.

Gently combine, mixing thoroughly.

Bake.

I am an experimental cook and I love to tweak recipes. I am thankful to have been given the free will to make some choices in how things mix together even though His recipe for our lives is right there in Scripture. I tweak with His plan and it clearly affects the outcome–bad news for me. And the Good News? His forgiveness and restoration for my mishaps. I don’t know how He does it, but He can take a recipe for disaster and transform it into a beautiful thing.

What’s cooking for you today?

Liz

PrayerPoint ~ Kindness ~ March 7

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 NIV

Have you ever been overwhelmed with someone’s kindness towards you? I have been on numerous occasions. Sometimes it is just the simplest of thoughtful words or actions but placed in a certain time and space and it becomes a significant moment. Maybe it was the element of surprise–like a bunch of Spring flowers poking through on a dreary mid-February day. Or maybe it was a glimpse of the love behind the action.

You did this for me?

Showing kindness doesn’t have to take an entire day to plan. It might be making a batch of cookies and taking a plate of them to your neighbor. It might be helping an elderly neighbor get their medicine or a trip to the doctor. A quick note that lets someone know you are praying for them as they travel through a difficult time.

I am an idea person so I can easily come up with many clever ideas to share kindness but lose the list or run out of time before I actually act on them. Don’t fall into inaction by over-analyzing and plotting out your acts of kindness. It may take a little intentionality at first, but soon you will find yourself extending kindness in a very natural way. Let kindness be one of those things you wear every day!

 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. Colossians 3:12-13 NIV

Blessings on your week!

Liz