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Ways to Grow Through Loneliness

Ways God Grows Us Through Loneliness             “As I sit here in a room filled with hundreds of other Believers, I couldn’t feel more alone. I feel invisible in a sea of faces.  Somehow, I feel very unseen. How did I get here? What did I do to deserve this level of loneliness? How will I ever move forward? My life isn’t going as I planned, and I don’t know if I’ll ever get it back.” These words were penned by a friend of mine several years ago.  She had written that note to herself while sitting in a church filled with almost a thousand other people.  It was during worship service, and that, sometimes, awkward part of the service where the pastor encourages everyone to meet and greet their neighbors had just transpired...

The Song of Redemption

Have you ever stood at the edge of the ocean? Felt the tide lap at your feet? Heard the roar of the water as the waves crash? Maybe you’ve seen the sun slip lower and lower on the horizon, turning from gold to pink to fiery red, fading into purple, and finally the dark blue of night, unable to distinguish water from sky. When I stand and stare at that giant expanse of water, it reminds me that God is constant and faithful. Wave after wave—they don’t stop. The tides roll. The sun rises and sets day after day, constant and true; all of them mirroring an aspect of the character of their Creator. I don’t know many who aren’t impacted by the greatness of the ocean; who don’t feel small next to the pounding surf. I don’t think this is an accident. Romans 12:20 tells us that God made creation to ...

Diving Deeper in God

Photo Credit: Canva www.courtnayerichard.com I want to start off by asking you a few quick questions. How is your walk with God? Are you close to Him right now or do you feel like you are drifting a bit? Do you want to dive deeper into your relationship and knowledge of God? Would you like to learn more about Scripture and how to grow in your calling? If so, let’s talk about how to dive deeper in God in this season and beyond (and I’m giving you a FREE access pass to the DIVE Conference that happened earlier last month – get pass below). Now, I know what it’s like to hunger and thirst for more of God. Lately, I’ve been very busy doing all-the-things, but I have to say that my quiet time with God has been quick moments in the Word and then suddenly having to dash off to check em...

May Scripture Writing Guide (2021)

Scripture writing plans are incredibly simple, yet incredibly effective for helping us read, interpret and absorb the Word of God. Rather than simply letting our eyes pass over a verse and perhaps miss its full meaning, writing Scripture down helps us absorb each word and really think through what the passage before us is saying. Each day in May you’ll have the opportunity to write down a verse. We suggest using a journal where you can add any additional mediations or prayers that the verse brings to mind. Click here to download the May Scripture Writing Guide! Join Our Telegram Group : Salvation & Prosperity  

God Brings the Rain

Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. Psalm 42:5 NIV When rain falls like tearsDrenching parched landscapesI know God sees my heart When flowers burst like hopeBrightening winter’s decayI know God is faithful When clouds hide the sunLike worries obscure peaceI know I need my God  When tree branches swayTowering timbers give inDisplaying God’s power Clouds hold back angry, blackThe storm they unleashDestroys all peaceTempest surges Until stillness again appearsRaindrops falling falling fallingFrom sky of grayA steady rhythm on the earth And still words won’t comeTo express the dampnessof my soul, the gloomin my sunless heart, the sorrowlike puddles in the mire And still tears don’t co...

Old Testament Comfort for Current Times

Too often we forget how much the Old Testament can minister to our desperate hearts, and we miss out if we don’t sit with the truths it brings. In times when it is clear that man cannot save himself, I am comforted to know that the serpent’s head will be crushed, that God works what others meant for harm for good, that God can set free those long stuck in captivity, and he can stop a plague whenever he pleases. These are truths packed into just the first two books of the Bible. I am finding solace in Judges as people continually choose what is right in their own eyes, leaving slaughtered daughters and cut-up concubines in their wake. How are these monstrous acts consoling? You should be asking that question, but hear me when I say, “It reminds me that the horror in the headlines of today i...

The God of Hope

The God of All Hope The battles we have faced are many. We battle through the ugliness of death, lost relationships, addiction, financial ruin, parenting challenges, and wayward prodigals. Sometimes, we face seemingly insurmountable obstacles that threaten to suffocate the life from us at any moment. The weights are heavy, and if we are not careful, we begin to feel hopeless. The hopelessness can creep in with ease, at first, that feels uncomfortable, but sadly, it becomes all-too-familiar, as we drown in the sorrow of one more disappointment, worried we may lose it if one more thing happens. I am writing to all the exhausted, hopeless, and ready-to-throw-in-the-towel out there. I do not know your no-hope moment. I have no idea how long it took you to get here, how many “no’s” you had...

carrying my cross: rejecting self-help to embrace self-sacrifice

I am in the midst of carrying my cross, and I am embarrassed about it. I want my eyes fixed on Jesus’ feet: His toes caked with dirt, leather straps stretched across his insteps, blood dripping from his head and down his face and hitting the crusted ground. And I am not doing my part, I’ve decided. For I am on Jesus’ back, underneath my cross, which is on top of Jesus’ back. And he takes one labored, tortured step and then another. Stumbling and holding the cross–His cross and my own–and getting up again, always moving forward, forward, forward. I close my eyes. This is a nightmare. But it isn’t. It is absolutely real. I am on my back, weak and immobile, and unable to help in any way. My clothes are ragged and torn. My hair is matted in clumps. My face is streaked with dirt and tears. And ...

Psalm 104 and the Goodness of God

Nearly eight years ago, my family left our tidy neighborhood home on a city lot and settled onto an eight-acre homestead with two Hereford cows, a 2,000 square foot garden, and a small orchard. We were naive and inexperienced, but nurturing the spark of a dream in our hearts, we were committed to learning. A few months later on a golden summer evening, while picking marionberries in my garden, I had a simple thought that would not leave me: this is such a gift…all of it… * that I can plant a seed and the sun and rain will cause it to grow, and I can feed my family with the fruit it bears.  * that I can watch a calf enter the world, and he will grow strong and healthy by drinking his mother’s milk – a mother who knows intuitively how to birth and care for her babe. * that I can raise o...

How to Have Zen-Like Peace

The phone rang. By the time the conversation was over, it felt like someone knocked the air out of my chest. Before I answered the phone I was happy, content. I noted that I had a zen-like peace. It was strange because there were anxious circumstances around me – family, job, relationships. I was beginning to revel in this feeling of peace which defied any human understanding. After the phone call, the brick on my chest was painfully palpable. It hurt to breathe. But I had to keep going. I made some panicked phone calls then walked around the block with my husband. I started to beat myself up, wondering what role I played in this outcome. I came up empty. Then I started to ask why. The why seemed loud initially, but that zen-like peace wouldn’t disappear; it started to overw...

what happens when we redefine strength

Easter night. Curtains open. The sky so dark I can no longer see out, just my reflection in the glass. It is a beautiful lull from the fun of March Madness. (We are a UCLA family and have had a lot of fun cheering on our underdog basketball team this season.) A few books next to me and one in my lap. This has been a season of listening and exploring–I hope to always seek wisdom and self-awareness.  So I am leaning into a new movement. Taking a deeper look at how my sins point to strongholds–idols I worship, ideas I hold onto that reveal my heart’s affinity toward so many things other than God. In prayer this morning, using imaginative contemplation to experience the scene of Jesus’ tortuous laboring up to Golgotha–and the three hours of suffering on the cross under dark sky ...

5 Things to Remember When You’re Struggling to Find Clarity

The lie from the enemy of your soul is that you cannot go on. Maybe he’s telling you that no one really cares about you or your pain. Maybe he’s telling you that no one wants you around. As you battle the challenges we can often face in life, confusion can rise up. The lies become believable. The sense of wondering if you can go on or how to make the right decisions sometimes seems just a little too hard. That is why we want to offer you some help if you are currently struggling to find clarity in your life. If you are currently wondering if there is more to life or struggling to find fulfillment in the day-to-day, then read on. God is not the author of confusion, and we stand with you to find clarity in your life as you seek Him. Here are a few things we want you to remember: 1. God Does ...