Just Have Faith

I wrote this piece a couple of years ago. I believe it is still so important.

As I begin this journey of total trust with the Lord, I came across this scripture in one of my favorite chapters in the Bible, Mark 5.

Don’t be afraid. Just have faith. Six simple words that have the power to transform my life. Jesus didn’t tell Jairus, the desperate daddy looking for healing for his dying daughter, to not feel fear…nor did Jesus scold Jairus for feeling fear.

In the midst of mockers, doubters, and throngs of people, Jesus speaks from the heart of the heavenly Father into the heart of this terrified daddy, “Don’t be afraid. Just have faith.”

We all have the choice to cling to the idols of worry, fear, and anxiety. We also have the choice to lay them down and declare, You (insert idol here) will NOT mock my God for my God is faithful, powerful, and all I NEED!

Feelings are so powerfully persuasive. They can so easily knock my faith down and begin to dictate my thoughts and boss me around.

Not today! My feelings are subject to my God. I don’t answer to them. I answer to Him! I come under You Lord Jesus…I commit myself to You this day. Sweet moments in Your presence…simply being with You. I’m in love with You and choose faith over fear!

#faithoverfeelings #fear #faith #dontbeafraid #idols #choose

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For Me?

If I’m honest, I will have to tell you that I’ve been struggling…struggling with faith…now I KNOW without a doubt that the word of God is True. It is THE truth, but I struggle with believing it’s for me. I read the promises, stories, and instructions and I have all sorts of head knowledge. If you needed help, I could guide you to scripture and give you wisdom, but if I’m totally open and dangerously honest, I really struggle believing the extravagant promises of the Lord are mine.

You see, my faith has taken a beating. Perhaps yours has too? When my faith is weak, I am not in a place of trusting the Lord. I begin to strive, to fix things in my own strength. I leave the shadow of His wing. In order to not be disappointed and somehow defend God (which is really just a crazy thought) I keep expectations low, which lead to a strange wallowing place where I begin to get comfortable with less than God’s best. Here in this wallowing place, my hope begins to wither, fade, and die.

Not this day! I am declaring my God is living among us, He is a mighty warrior who takes great delight in me WITH gladness. With His love, He calms all my fears and rejoices over ME with joyful songs!

I am claiming this promise. It is yours to declare over your life too, sweet friend. Today is a good day because our Jesus is truth, His word is Truth and His promises are for every believer! #faith #promises #declaration #jesusgirls #motherhood #worth #rejoice #tbh #holyspirit #freedominchrist #freeindeed #fearnot #worship #boldfaith #boldprayers #scaryprayers #openhands #kingdom #trust #expecting

Tears

As I sat down at my local coffee shop yesterday to do some paperwork, I was rummaging through my purse. I found my tissues from the day before…I had attended the funeral of my mentor and dear friend. The Holy Spirit brought this scripture to my mind. These tissues had been soaked with tears…tears because I miss my friend and tears of joy because I know I will see him again. Not one of my tears was wasted. Not one of our sorrows is overlooked by our merciful and kind Savior. I did end up throwing my tissues away, but I had such a sense of how sacred they are to God. I am so overwhelmed by His love.

You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.”

‭‭Psalms‬ ‭56:8‬ ‭

#tears #tissues #jesus #mercy #kindness

Immediately

In Matthew 14, the Apostle Peter walks on water. We see a boat full of men who have just spent days hearing Jesus teach, watching him perform miracles, and bringing hope to the hopeless, so when they first see Jesus approaching on the water, it always surprises me that they don’t recognize Him. In terror, the disciples think Jesus is a ghost.

Immediately, Jesus reassures them…calms them…brings peace to them in the midst of their terror…His voice, which they’ve heard so often, brings them great comfort, but so quickly, Peter forgets….Not even minutes later, Peter is again crying out in terror as he begins to sink beneath the waves…

At first, he was so bold for the Lord…taking that first step out of the boat, but the battle between fear and faith was raging…

I am so much like Peter. I know the Lord’s voice…I know His word, but when my circumstances loom, when my flesh is screaming, His voice is drowned out…I can’t hear it. I so often cower to the god of FEAR, because fear requires no faith. Fear is so easy to follow.

Thank you Jesus! When I cry out, You IMMEDIATELY reach out and pull me up!

No more doubting, no more trying to defend You or figuring out a Plan B if You don’t come through…I choose to trust You! My confidence is in You alone! You are faithful to Your word AND to Your daughter!

#hope #holyspirit #dontlosehope #boldprayers #scaryprayers #openhands #kingdom #trust #expecting #jesusgirls #encouragement

Caught

Thanks for stopping by. This is a repost from a series I wrote at Messy Life Praying Wife.

Today, we are looking into the dramatic story of the woman caught in adultery. What does this story hold for us? Even if we’re not committing adultery, what can we glean from this passage of scripture?

The religious leaders were trying to trap Jesus and trick Him into breaking the Law. In the synagogue, where Jesus was teaching the crowd, the Pharisees brought before Him the woman caught in sin. They made her stand before Him…before everyone, exposed for all to see.

“In the Law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. Now what do you say?” They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him. 5-6

In their zeal to trap and ensnare Christ, these leaders exposed the sin of another with no regard to their own. With their jealous, misguided fury against the Lord, they pretended to inquire of His judgment, but really they were accusing and judging Him.

In His silence, Jesus allowed their questions to hang in the air…unanswered, perhaps exposing more than they realized.

But Jesus bent down and started to write on the ground with his finger.  When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.” Again he stooped down and wrote on the ground. 6-8

Jesus is always more interested in the dignity of the person than the judgment of the sin. After all, mercy triumphs over judgment (James 2:13). Jesus, as Divine judge, was more concerned with repentance than punishment.

Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?”

“No one, sir,” she said.

“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.”10-11

We discover through this story, that we can often classify the sinner with their sin, leaving little to no room for freedom, but Jesus came to cover, protect, and liberate those stuck in sin. He came to set the captives free. The woman caught in adultery was held captive by her accusers until Jesus, in His quiet and profound way, turned what was meant for evil to good, and into something beautiful: redemption and salvation.

Read the following verses: Romans 5:8, Ephesians 2: 1-10, and Galatians 3: 26-28. What do these verses say about us? What do they say about Jesus? How does knowing these things help when you are struggling with sin? Or when someone else is struggling with sin?

As men and women of the word, let’s be merciful, caring for the dignity of the other person. Let’s be more concerned with our own sin before being willing to expose that of someone else. Like Christ, let’s bend down and offer grace and truth to those who need it.

~Melissa

Jesus Saw Her and Called Her Forward

Taste & See Blog Spot

luke131213

On a Sabbath Jesus was teaching in one of the synagogues, and a woman was there who had been crippled by a spirit for eighteen years. She was bent over and could not straighten up at all. When Jesus saw her, he called her forward and said to her, “Woman, you are set free from your infirmity.” Then he put his hands on her, and immediately she straightened up and praised God.

Luke 13: 10-13

Life is hard. Period. There are periods of ease, but the majority of life is just. Plain. Hard. Yeah, yeah, I know…you thought this was a blog to encourage you right? Well, it is, but let’s be honest.  I’m not going to wear my halo and put on my Christianese and claim all things bright and perfect over here in Jesus land! Not only would that be a lie, but also a great…

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Born to Love

D0A53A7A-5CA8-4558-A6F9-4DFF905C0B3E.pngAnd when Jesus came to the place, He looked up and saw him, and said to him, “Zacchaeus, make haste and come down, for today I must stay at your house.” So he made haste and came down, and received Him joyfully. But when they saw it, they all complained, saying, “He has gone to be a guest with a man who is a sinner.” Luke 19: 5-7

The story of Zacchaeus is familiar to us, but as I read it this past week, one line struck me anew. “But when they saw it, they all complained…” What had they seen? Who were “they”? Where had they come from?

Reading the Word of God in context is vital to understanding the whole of the scripture I am studying. So as I back up to chapter 18 in Luke, I discover much that opened my eyes to not only the “THEY” in this story, but also the “ME” in this story.

Zacchaeus was not just a tax collector, but the chief tax collector…head honcho. Hated and despised; tax collectors were greatly distrusted and poorly regarded. Because of dishonest dealings and deceitful practices, people did not associate with them.

So, back to my questions.

The “they” in the above scripture are referring to the people who had been walking with Jesus. They had heard Him preach, perform a miracle, and tell the rich young ruler that it was impossible for a rich man to get into heaven. Ironically, Jesus also preached about the Pharisee and the tax collector.

“But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’

“I tell you that this man, rather than the other{Pharisee}, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” Luke 18: 13-14

Even after witnessing all this, they complained when Jesus brought Zacchaeus into His fold. I’m sure Zacchaeus could hear them complaining. He could feel the stares. He knew what they thought of him, but they didn’t know his heart.

He wasn’t with anyone before he climbed up the tree. – Isolation is often the price for riches.

Zacchaeus joyfully received Jesus and declared before all, his true and honest intentions of restitution and repentance. We know it is genuine, because Jesus declared, “Today salvation has come to this house, because he also is a son of Abraham; for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Luke 19: 9-10.

Wait! Did you catch that? Jesus just accomplished the impossible! Zacchaeus, a very rich man, just received salvation! He was willing to do what the rich young ruler was not…follow Christ at all cost!

And yet, they complained!

How like me to disregard miracles that go against my preconceived notions and judgments! I put more stock in my idea of a person than in the transforming power of the Holy Spirit and the miracle of salvation! I allow what I think of a person to determine how I see their walk with the Lord. Instead of rejoicing, I complain about their past sins, real or imagined. I can get caught up in the crowd and allow their judgments to lead me.

As a Christian this should not be!

I am called to shine the light of Christ to the world around me. How can I do that if I am proudly shutting out the very people Christ has brought to me to love and serve?

In the wise words of my daughter, “If we don’t love them and show them the love of Christ, Mom, who will?”
So today, I choose to be brave. I choose to lay down my complaints, judgments, and preconceived notions of people and trust the Lord to lead, guide, and protect me and my family. May I joyfully receive that which He came to save…the lost, the unlovable, sinners…just like me.

Until Next Time
~ Melissa