Story

Chasing the Wise Among Us

Make every effort to discern My will for you—searching the Scriptures and seeking My Face.Also, seek wise counsel from other Christians.Jesus Always, July 11 It’s fascinating to me that in Jesus’ first 30 years of life, we have only a few stories about Him. He’s born in Bethlehem; presented in the temple on the 8th day; and his parents flee with Him to Egypt, on the run from a political tyrant seeking to take His life. And then there’s that one quick moment in Luke 2. Jesus’ family is wrapping up the Passover festival in Jerusalem and are heading back home to Galilee. Thinking He was with the larger family group of aunts, uncles, and cousins, Mary and Joseph hit the road. But after a full day, they discovered Jesus, who was 12 years old at the time, wasn’t in their company. I can imagine t...

The Healing Power of God’s Presence

The best response to the glorious gift of grace is a thankful heart that delights in doing My will. It is vital to proclaim the gospel not only to yourself but to the world. … Seek to share this good news—both near (to family, friends, coworkers) and far (to the nations). All peoples need to know the truth about Me. Jesus Always, July 16 From the beginning, God has always wanted to have a relationship with His children. Even after Adam and Eve sinned against God and hid from Him, He continued to have a relationship with them. And, in fact, one of the ways God strengthens our relationship with Him is when He reveals His presence to us. But in my religious upbringing, I learned to see God the way Adam and Eve did as they hid—I learned to think He would be a vengeful God. So I kept God at a d...

Treasures in Darkness

“There are hidden treasures strategically placed along the way. Some of the treasures are trials, designed to shake you free from earth-shackles. Others are blessings that reveal My Presence…”Jesus Calling, May 23 A rock collector named Robert Cutshaw once found a rock he described as “big and pretty.” He tried to sell it, and when that failed, he kept the rock under his bed in the dark. Rob guessed the blue chunk of rock could bring as much as $500, but he would have taken less for it if an urgent bill needed paying. That’s how close he came to selling for a few hundred dollars what turned out to be the largest, most valuable sapphire ever found. The Blue Rock that Rob had once abandoned to the darkness — now known as the “Star of David” sapphire — could easily sell for several million do...

Seeking God’s Wisdom in Graduation

Rest in Me, My child. Give your mind a break from planning and trying to anticipate what will happen. Pray continually, asking My Spirit to take charge of the details of this day. Remember that you are on a journey with Me.Jesus Calling, June 10 As we look at the graduation season this year, we find ourselves involved in the COVID-19 Pandemic. The schools are closed, and we are all home-bound to ensure our families are not exposed to the virus. We find that this interruption is intercepting our normal celebrations of graduation, but at the same time, we want to celebrate the graduation of our loved ones as we look to the future and what God has planned for them. Everyone wants to know the formula for success, and the best contributor to that kind of success is wisdom—specifically, God’s. I...

When You Feel Weak, Choose to Adore God

Accept your weakness and brokenness, beloved; let them open your heart to Me. You can be fully yourself with Me… Whenever you’re feeling weak and wounded, come confidently into My Presence to receive abundant Love and Peace.Jesus Always, September 23 This morning I ran the same stretch of road I’ve run several times for years. My feet know the path by heart—same country road, the same dog discovering me anew every morning, and the same state route.   No mile marker had changed … but everything had changed. The state route that once signaled the inertia of American culture—caffeinated drivers riding the bumper of the car in front of them, distracted with the 8 hours ahead of them or their phone on the dash—felt like a back-country road. Five cars passed me on my half-mile stretch. I he...

Don’t Fear the Storm, Jesus Is With You

“Do not be afraid, for I am with you. Hear Me saying, “Peace, be still,” to your restless heart. No matter what happens, I will never leave you or forsake you. Let this assurance soak into your mind and heart until you overflow with Joy.”From Jesus Calling, April 20 “US coronavirus outbreak sees its deadliest day yet.” “Worldwide COVID-19 numbers are growing at unprecedented rates.” “The economy may take years to recover.” Over the past month, we have heard countless statements like these about the coronavirus. We pray for the day this virus will be a distant memory. But in the months and years to come, we will face many other challenging moments, when it feels like the easiest path to take would be to succumb to fear Fear is contagious. But so is faith. Fear is contagious. But so is faith...

Pushing Through Prayer Obstacles

When you bring Me prayer requests, lay out your concerns before Me. Speak to Me candidly; pour out your heart. Then thank Me for the answers that I have set into motion long before you can discern results. Jesus Calling, January 11 I sat staring at my computer screen, trying to write a sermon for Sunday, and a full hour passed before I realized I had nothing to offer. The church my wife and I started from scratch was 4 years old and growing like crazy. I, however, was not. I was spiritually exhausted, defeated, and depleted. My only connection to God was tethered to the content I was struggling to create for others. Something had to change. I needed another way to connect with God and refuel my spiritual life. I needed prayer. Finding it hard to pray But the truth is at some point in our l...

Pushing Through Prayer Obstacles

When you bring Me prayer requests, lay out your concerns before Me. Speak to Me candidly; pour out your heart. Then thank Me for the answers that I have set into motion long before you can discern results. Jesus Calling, January 11 I sat staring at my computer screen, trying to write a sermon for Sunday, and a full hour passed before I realized I had nothing to offer. The church my wife and I started from scratch was 4 years old and growing like crazy. I, however, was not. I was spiritually exhausted, defeated, and depleted. My only connection to God was tethered to the content I was struggling to create for others. Something had to change. I needed another way to connect with God and refuel my spiritual life. I needed prayer. Finding it hard to pray But the truth is at some point in our l...

Empathy: A Key to Loving Our Neighbors

“Learn to relate to others through My Love rather than yours…Instead of trying harder to help people through your own paltry supplies, become aware of My unlimited supply, which is accessible to you continually.  Let My Love envelop your outreach to other people.” Jesus Calling, May 12 Early in our marriage, my husband and I experienced two miscarriages a year apart, followed by years of infertility. It remains one of the hardest seasons of my life. Even though I had good friends, a loving family, and a supportive faith community, I felt alone in my grief. Well-intended Words The platitudes started within days of my first miscarriage. An older woman came to visit and casually mentioned her own miscarriage. “It was early, first trimester,” she said. “I was fine. You’ll be fine too.” Ye...

Seeing God’s Beauty All Around Us

“My world is filled with beautiful things; they are meant to be pointers to Me, reminders of My abiding Presence.” – Jesus Calling, June 6 It’s the end of the day, and I’ve been searching for my slippers. I am so annoyed. In this one simple and meaningless failure, I do what I sometimes do: I consider myself a failure. This one little thing spirals into a weight on my chest, and I can feel depression and anxiety slowly creeping in.  Our house is littered with shoes. There are shoes by doors and couches, beds and chairs, here and there and everywhere. I trip over them often. Under my desk, where I write and sit most of the time, there’s always a pair or two strewn about, since I kick them off when I sit in my chair cross-legged.   As the night falls and the routine of the day...

Connecting to Your Final Destination

A life lived close to Me will never be dull or predictable. Expect each day to contain surprises! Resist your tendency to search for the easiest route throughout the day. Be willing to follow wherever I lead. – Jesus Calling, January 13 As I slid my bag onto seat 28E, I uttered, “Lord, just get me there!” I made small talk with the stranger beside me and felt the familiar nervous flutters in my stomach that come whenever I travel. Several hours later and 30,000 feet above the Midwestern plains, I let out a relieved chuckle as I crunched stale airline pretzels and sipped bubbly ginger ale. An hour later we landed in Denver. As we taxied to the gate, I turned my phone back on and received the text no traveler wants to get: my connecting flight was canceled. I was to collect my checked b...

Wrestling with Faith and Expectations

With My help, you can overcome any obstacle. Do not expect an easy path as you journey hand in hand with Me, but do remember that I, your very-present Helper, am omnipotent. Jesus Calling, January 9 Our Expectations Has Jesus ever behaved differently than you expected? Or maybe differently than you wanted? If God has ever moved—or not moved—in a way you desired, then you know the sting. You know the hurt. You know the confusion that surrounds you, threatening to suffocate your faith. If you have ever felt this way, please know you are not alone. John the Baptist is just one example of a person’s faith tested in the furnace of trials. He, too, felt the sting of wondering what Jesus was doing—or not doing. He had been a voice in the wilderness, a wanderer waiting anxiously for Israel’s Messi...

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