Services and Times

Sat. Eve. 6:30
Sun. AM 10:00
Children's SS 10:00 am Oct. thru May
Prayer time Tue Eve 6:30
Youth Ministry capabilities available according to need
Small group capabilities available according to need

Directions

Rt. 11 S from Polkville to Rt. 392 W
Rt. 392 W to Parker St.
Left on Parker St
-----------------------
Rt. 215 S from Cortland to 392 E
Rt. 392 E to Parker St
Right on Parker St
-------------------------
Church at the corner of Parker St. and Valentine Hill

Short Readings: About Real Life Issues

We trust that you find these enlightening and/or encouraging. The issue will be numbered with corresponding readings. If you have questions or comments please use the reply box and if every thing works correctly I can get it in an email and hopefully be able to respond and to help you or encourage you even more. Thanks for reading these.

1. ANXIETY
2. CHANGE
3. FEAR
4. GUILT
5. HATE
6. SELFISHNESS,
7. SERVING
8. STRESS
9. TEMPTATION
10. GRUDGES
11. ANGER
12. WORRY
13. RESENTMENT
14. DOUBT
15. TEMPER
16. DISCOURAGEMENT
17. TRIALS
18. CONTENTMENT
19. COMPASSION
20. ENVY
21. FORGIVENESS
22. GRUMBLING
23. SUFFERING

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

1. 1. ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY, ANXIETY

We need to tend to our heart and be the gatekeeper of it… being careful what attitudes we nurse, what thoughts we allow to make paths in our mind, what images and words we allow media entertainment to deposit there. The essence of our life springs from our heart. When our heart is at peace, peace springs from within us. When our heart is flooded with anxiety, anger, or edginess that is what will spring forth. Our entire life is affected by the wellspring of our heart.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We often find ourselves carrying so many needless weights and burdens through life. Jealously, comparison, anger, worry, anxiety, insecurity, bitterness, sadness, unforgiveness – do any of these sound familiar to you? Take regular inventory of every area of your life. What weights are you carrying that could be dragging you down? Let Jesus free you of those burdens. You don’t have time to carry them!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

What of tomorrow? Tomorrow hasn’t come; today is what we need to concern ourselves with. When we start to get anxious of the things that may or may not happen, the only thing we can do is give it over in prayer. There we can find God’s peace in place of our worry. We don’t have to live in anxiety of our ‘tomorrows’.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you’ve been struggling with a mountain of fear, anxiety, depression, un-forgiveness, anger, defeat, condemnation, despair … it’s time to step into the freedom Jesus Christ died to give you. Don’t live paralyzed in a place that should only have been a pit stop.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

What the world most needs to see in this modern culture is godly families loving one another, business people working with integrity and frugality, and young men and women who choose moral purity. In a word, the world needs to be exposed to believers who are obedient. By showing peace instead of anxiety or practicing patience rather than speaking a sharp word, a Christian bears witness to the beauty of the gospel. We attract unbelievers to Christ through our words and deeds. They may turn down a doctrine, but they cannot ignore a righteous life.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Living in an increasingly insecure world has its real challenges. Dangers, terrorism, new strains of viruses, economic struggles and broken/displaced families surround us on all sides. In the midst of these tensions that can crush our peace and increase our levels of anxiety, it’s comforting to know that we can look to our God, the living God, to surround us with His protection. No evil can surround us when we remain surrounded by God’s protection!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

What is currently fueling our life? Is it faith or fear? It can be challenging for us when we don’t know what the future holds. Sometimes life has problems and challenges that we didn’t count on. It might be an uncertain economy, poor job and real estate market. Some problems may be directly or indirectly caused by unwise decisions or even sin. So what do we do, which choice do we make? Fear can be a strong human emotion when dealing with problems. Not all fear is bad. There can be a very healthy fear that alerts me to possible harm. But when we begin to dwell so much on the ‘what if’s’ in life, fear and anxiety can take over. And that leaves …no room for faith.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The waters of life are difficult to navigate on our own. They can produce fear and anxiety with every swell. We may think we can get through this on my own, but sooner or later we will be dashed against the jagged rocks, our life shattered and in pieces if we don’t keep our eyes focused on the lighthouses God has placed in our life to guide us safely home.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Don’t be anxious there will never be a crisis so troubling that God can not bring peace in the midst of it! God will not necessarily take your problems away, but He will carry the load for you by giving you the strength to continue to put one foot . God’s word clearly indicates that there is nothing you can face that is too difficult, too troubling, or too fearful for God. No matter what your circumstances are, turn your anxiety over to God and let His perfect peace guard your heart.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

2. 2. CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE, CHANGE,

Life is a challenge. It is not easy living life as God calls us to live. All of us are facing different circumstances and trials. Your trial is not my trial and mine is not yours, but rest assured and know, that trial is there for the opportunity of allowing you to grow strong in God’s Arms. So whatever our problems may be today, let’s make up our minds to let the Lord bring about a solution and do it His way. Let’s be committed to keeping our trust in God to change our situation. Jesus is the way to growing strong for He said, I have come that you might have life and have it more abundantly.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Stop and think about how God accepts you, how He loves you, how He is deeply concerned about you and will meet you right where you are and take you just as you are. His love does not change a bit whether you are a failure or a success. It does not make any difference to Him how you appear in the eyes of others. God loves you; He is concerned about you and has already received you, already given you all that he can give in Jesus Christ.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Sometimes discontentment can motivate positive, godly change in our lives. Discontentment can be the warning sign that we need to make changes in our walk with God–and that can lead to contentment. When we are contented in life, we can face whatever roadblocks and detours we find. Instead of grumbling about our circumstances, we can look for the opportunities to trust God in new ways and bring glory to Him. We can use our valleys to remind us that only God can fill the emptiness in our lives.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We never seem to be content because we always want to be somewhere other than where we are or doing something different than what we are doing in this moment. But the truth is, real contentment can never be found out there; it can only be found in Christ. Things and people can change on a daily basis, but Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. Let’s determine to know the secret of contentment. His name is Jesus.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Change is usually painful. It’s the dying of something old. Transitions seem scary, because we don’t know what’s going to happen next. But through it all, Christ is steady, God is faithful, his word remains solid and certain. The more we pay conscious attention to God’s kingdom, the easier it becomes to look beyond what’s passing away.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

So many things are being billed as “life changing” these days: diets, procedures, relationships, home makeovers, etc. But while these things might make a difference on the outside, they don’t have the power to change who we are on the inside. They change our circumstances but not who we are, not our actual lives. There is only One who can and does change us: the Holy Spirit. He alone has the power to change us from within as the old and stony heart is removed to make way for one that is new and yielding to His slightest touch. The Holy Spirit changes lives. And whether we’re being changed from a hardhearted sinner into a soft-hearted saint or being changed daily into someone who looks more and more like Jesus, we all need change . . . His change.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If we keep taking the same approach to things after realizing it’s not working out for us…..We will only continue to get the same results until we make that change to start getting the results we want.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Have you experienced a recent setback? If so, look for the lesson that God is trying to teach you. Instead of complaining about life’s sad state of affairs, learn what needs to be learned, change what needs to be changed, and move on. View failure and setbacks and life’s inevitable disappointments as opportunities to learn more about your God, yourself and your world!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God may give you a dream or an idea for an invention, a book, a song, or a movie. One idea from God can forever change the course of your life. God is not limited by what you have or don’t have. He can do anything, if you will simply stop limiting Him in your thinking.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God takes great joy in offering forgiveness to every person. He gives no thought to how we might “measure up”; He’s only interested in our response. Have you accepted His invitation to join in a relationship with Him that will change your life and last for all eternity? He’s calling your name today.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

“You’re either in a storm, just got out of one, or about to enter one.” That can sound daunting at first, but realistically we all know change and difficulty happen. But, we can be breathe easy and rest confidently because we can handle it. Jesus gives us strength. And he is with us before, after, and during the bad parts in our lives.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Rough roads aren’t limited to highways. Seemingly out of nowhere, storms can roll into our lives. They can obstruct our view of what is important. The path we need to take may not be clear. Obstacles can keep us from seeing what’s on the other side of where we stand. Sometimes what we really need is a change of perspective. It’s good to remind ourselves that beyond those dark, overwhelming storms lies blue sky and a clear view.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Encouragement can drastically change a person’s life! We all tend to get distressed from time to time and need encouragement. And beside, it is part of our stewardship as Christians to encourage others in the ways of the Lord. Show them how much you value him or her for who they are. It will make a world of difference towards their attitude.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Are you working with a blunt axe? Are you whacking away at the same old problems in the same old way but achieving less each time? Or are you working harder and harder to achieve the same result as before (and getting worn out in the process)? Maybe you need to make some changes? This could mean taking some time off in order to sharpen your axe. God doesn’t expect your life to be static or totally repetitive. He would love you to try something new or go back to Him for refreshment. If what you do now doesn’t seem to be working any more, do something different or in a different way.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Change is part of life. We all know that fact, but how many of us actually like or enjoy change? Some changes are easier to handle while others require some pain, either physical or emotional. We usually prefer not to allow too much stretching of our comfort zones. God uses changes in our lives to help us grow in some area to be more like Him. We may not even recognize this at the time we are going through the change. Rarely does anything go according to the plans we have in our heads. Even in those times when it seems nothing is going right, God has a plan He is working out. He is using a time of change to do something in us that would not happen otherwise.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Can you count the days, weeks, and years you have prayed for change and see nothing? Have you exhausted yourself from trying to help them? Do your tears still flow at random? Here’s hope for you. God is working even still. Our God is able to soften hard hearts. He longs to pour out His love and mercy on those He created. Yes, even the hard hearts matter to Him. Don’t give up hope. Keep praying and believing for beautiful blooms. One day they will come. And when they do, people will stop and take notice and praise His Holy name.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Has your world been turned upside down? Are you left wondering ‘how much is this going to hurt?’ Take heart you are not alone and God has come to bring comfort, peace and salvation for all who follow him. Knowing this does not change the situation, but it brings about a peace that helps you put one foot in front of the other and when you look back one day you will realize God was carrying you all along.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When you are on the mountain top be sure to take out your camera and take a snap shot of that moment, in that season of life. That way the next time the seasons change and you find yourself walking in the dark valley you can have that photo with you to remind you that everything is going to be okay, you’re going to make it because God will get you through, God hasn’t left you it’s just a season that will pass, God has a purpose for all of this that you’re going through. When you begin to focus on the truth you will begin to feel a change in you. Your faith will begin to rise and the hope you once had will find its way back to you.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

3. 3. FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, FEAR,

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If our hearts are full of fear, doubt, unbelief, negativity, bitterness, unforgiveness, envy, pride, lust or greed, then those traits will characterize our lives as well. Conversely, if we choose to fill our hearts with love, joy, peace, hope, kindness, faith, courage, grace, compassion and purpose, then those traits will determine our life’s story. The good news is that we get to choose. What will be your choice for your life?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Fear and faith cannot coexist. Are you going to face your limitations and fears, believe God’s truth, or succumb to the lies of the enemy?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Instead of getting anxious, fearful or stressed out by our trials, it actually helps us realize that just because we’re going through a trial doesn’t mean we’ve failed in some way or missed God’s direction for our life or that we should shrink back from our destiny. Remember, our challenges won’t change our destiny.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Strength is a mighty gift to have from God. With strength you can have many options. You can have strength to make it through a tough time. Strength to accomplish a difficult task. Strength to overcome overwhelming circumstances. Strength when all else has failed. Strength to be patient and wait on the Lord. Strength to tear down strongholds. Strength to get through another day. Strength to outlast a temptation. Strength to give it another try. Strength to accept grace. Strength to face your deepest fears. Strength to start over. Strength to admit when your wrong. Strength to accept your weakness. Strength to trust in God. Today God has all the strength you need. It’s yours for the asking. When you find yourself in a tight spot and you feel weak just say “Heavenly Father I need your strength just to make the next step”

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

As you pass through the deep waters of your circumstances, you may be wondering, “Who can rescue me from this?” Be encouraged! Even in the deepest of waters, God promises to be with the one who trusts in Him. He alone can truly rescue you and keep you from drowning. All you need do is take a deep breath of faith, reach out, and take hold of the mighty hand of God. Do not fear the deep, murky waters of uncertainty surrounding you.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Is there something that are you afraid of? Something that God wants you to do but you’re not doing because of fear? All that we have to be concerned about today is just the next step. Don’t fear the whole trip, just take one step at a time. Why not begin today?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you feel threatened, insecure, jealous or fearful when someone else flourishes and succeeds, then your view of God is too small. Realize that God is huge. There is room in His plan for everyone. He designed it to be that way. And He has BIG things in store for you.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We can come to God with our fears, He will surround us with His loving arms, talk softly to us, and strengthen us until we are brave enough to face the world again.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Have you been living with a secret that has kept you in shame for years? Have you tried to heal yourself with no avail? I have good news for you, you no longer need to live in the servitude to fear, for whom the Son has set free is free indeed. Take a deep breath and put your trust in the One who will cleanse you from all unrighteousness and who will heal all your diseases.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The waters of life are difficult to navigate on our own. They can produce fear and anxiety with every swell. We may think we can get through this on my own, but sooner or later we will be dashed against the jagged rocks, our life shattered and in pieces if we don’t keep our eyes focused on the lighthouses God has placed in our life to guide us safely home.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The only thing that fear does, is allow demons to hold us captive. Stop being so afraid and allow God’s light to set you free

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Perhaps today you feel you are facing life all alone. If you have placed your faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior of your life, you have a companion. The Holy Spirit is with you. He is fully aware of the challenges you face and the fear that might be in your heart. And He is more than able to give assurance and guidance wherever needed. Trust in that assurance today.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Fear is capable of freezing us in our tracks and destroying our joy in the Lord. We see how problems and troubles afflict the world, and we’re tempted to assume those calamities will get the best of us as well. But we have a great assurance in God. No matter our circumstances, we can go to the Lord for help, fully confident that He will protect us and provide what we need to overcome. Yes, trouble will still “pop up” on us unexpectedly. But we have Someone to guide us safely through.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We all face fears that are very real, and rightfully seem impossible from a human point of view. But God melts our fears by giving us an eternal perspective. He reminds us that our salvation rests in His almighty hands. We have access to divine strength. Our hope is in an everlasting God who is not intimidated by the current situation. Are you facing fear today, something that threatens to overwhelm you? Bring to mind God’s eternal promises. Take comfort in His unequaled strength and wisdom. You may still find it necessary to walk through that valley—surrounded by God’s care. But the fear that seeks to destroy you will itself be overwhelmed by the eternal grace of our loving Heavenly Father.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The road of life is filled with unknown surprises and difficult turns. And sometimes the path leaves us feeling confused and distraught. There is perhaps no better example than when we experience a painful loss. A loved one is taken unexpectedly. A relationship breaks, leaving us alone and afraid. Fear is a natural reaction when loss suddenly visits us. These kinds of crises plunge us into an ocean of uncertainty, turmoil, or grief. But we need not face these challenges alone. God has assured us that when we seek Him, He will empower us with strength, stamina, and—best of all—His presence. Perhaps you’re facing a difficult time of loss today. If not, it’s likely you’ll experience such a crisis in the future. That’s the nature of life. Whatever the case, you need not walk through that valley alone. Seek out the support of fellow believers. And give your burden to the Lord. He has promised to be your provider, your comfort, and your strength. Then rest in the promise that wherever you go, God will be with you.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Don’t feel as if you’ve failed when God has called you to do something and you are afraid. He will provide a way for you to make it through your fears and succeed. Being afraid is okay, but succumbing to that fear and being disobedient is not. God will call us to do hard things in our lifetime but He will be ever present and strong in our weakness!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Being in God’s will is the only place we should want to be, even if we don’t always understand it. Radical obedience to God’s will may actually result in some really fun and incredible works for God once we overcome the fear of stepping outside of our comfort zones. Ask God today where He would have you to go. You might just be surprised at His answer.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Facing tragedy, or life storms of any kind, can be extremely difficult. You may be thinking, “I don’t know how I could ever get through this.” Or you may be battling powerful feelings of despair, suffering, confusion, fear, worry, and even anger. These are all normal responses to tragedy. But as difficult as this life storm may be, you are not alone. God is with you always. He loves you, and cares about what is going on in your life. He hears your cries and sees your pain. Moreover, He understands.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Difficult circumstances can bring about many emotions in the hurting heart. One of those emotions is anger. You can face and resolve your anger by first being honest with yourself and with God about what you are feeling. He is big enough to handle your anger and to help you resolve it. Talk to Him about your doubts and fears, and what is causing rage in your heart. Tell Him, “God, I am so angry!” He will not turn His back on you. So, give your angry feelings to the Lord, and trust Him to replace those feelings with peace, forgiveness, and strength. Freedom from unchecked anger is freedom to heal.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Consider your current circumstances. Think of it as the race that is set before you. Imagine you’re running hurdles in a track meet. Are you spiritually fit to run? Or is depression, fear, anger, worry, or doubt weighing you down? Rather than allow these to hinder you, why not view them as obstacles or hurdles on the track. Start your training by talking to God about every thing that is holding you back. Then trust Him to help you leap over each one.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When tragedy turns up the heat in your life, and stirs up fear in your spirit, don’t allow your faith to be shaken! Remember who’s with you at all times, and in all circumstances—the King of kings, and Lord of lords, with all power in His hands! He’s calling you to trust and obey, to be courageous in the midst of difficult circumstances, and to have faith. In the presence of faith, fear must leave!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We needn’t fear what comes against us. God knows the whole situation. Though we feel overwhelmed when we look at our circumstances, the Lord sees the whole picture and sees the way out for us. If you are facing a battle today that seems overwhelming, give it over to God and let Him fight for you. He will work it all out, and make a way where it seems there is no way.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Fear of people does not come from God. The problem is that many Christians fear people more than they fear God. Their fear hinders them from pleasing God because they waste their efforts appeasing other people. There is no reason to live in fear when you have the mighty presence of the Holy Spirit within you. Fear will enslave you, but Christ has come to set you free. The only fear that God encourages in a Christian’s life is the fear of God.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Don’t be anxious there will never be a crisis so troubling that God can not bring peace in the midst of it! God will not necessarily take your problems away, but He will carry the load for you by giving you the strength to continue to put one foot . God’s word clearly indicates that there is nothing you can face that is too difficult, too troubling, or too fearful for God. No matter what your circumstances are, turn your anxiety over to God and let His perfect peace guard your heart.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Can you give thanks to God in the midst of turmoil? It’s difficult, isn’t it? During troubled times we often are busy making requests, not thanking Him for our situation. Everything we hear on the news screams turmoil. Strife, division, anger, hatred; all play a role in making life uncertain and fearful. Our thanksgiving is not dependent upon our circumstances. We can learn to give thanks even under the greatest provocations. It’s not easy to be thankful when our world is falling apart, and God has yet to answer our prayers. It’s not easy to be thankful when our pain is so great. We do have much to be thankful for however. So let us count our blessings and acknowledge God’s providential care for us. Let us rejoice in His love and mercy and grace.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

You never need to fear evil. As intimidating as evil can be, there is nothing you will ever face that intimidates your Shepherd. He has seen it all and soundly defeated every form of wickedness. Evil never catches Him by surprise. Your Shepherd is always prepared and knows exactly when and where you will experience difficulty. Place your absolute trust in your Good Shepherd that He will protect you and demonstrate His love for you through the darkest valley.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We often work overtime to get people to notice us. We want to show them how adequate we are, how competent, how gifted, how important. Before we get too carried away though we must remember that it is God’s strength that supports us and God’s love for us that will not fail. We need have no fear nor striving as long as we put our trust in the saving grace of God.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

This life holds many fears! The fear of life’s uncertainties, insecurities, fears of the unknown. Loss of employment, sickness, being left alone, failure of being accepted. As soon as a trial or difficulty like these hit us, God would want our minds to be spring-loaded to immediately remember these words: “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am Your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

As you follow Jesus you will face moments of great distress. At times it will seem that events conspire to cause you to stumble in your relationship with Him. You do not initiate them, but they arise from opposition or the intensity of your circumstances. Nevertheless, failure is the end result. You may fear that your failure has caught God by surprise. He has made provision to respond every time you stumble. Don’t think that somehow your failures are bigger or more complex than any God has dealt with. If you are facing challenges that seem overwhelming, don’t be discouraged. God has already foreseen them and prepared for them.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We grossly underestimate the God we serve! To ignore God’s word or to disobey a direct command from Him is to ignore the magnificent nature of Christ. Our fear of other people proves that we do not understand the awesome Lord who walks with us. The Christ we serve today is the Lord of all creation. He is vastly more awesome and powerful than the gentle rabbi we often imagine. If you have forgotten how great and mighty the Lord is, meet Him through the vision of the beloved disciple as described in the Book of Revelation. The encounter will dramatically affect the way you live!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Over the centuries, death has been our relentless and unyielding enemy. No one, regardless of worldly rank, strength, or wealth has been able to escape death. As soon as we are born, death becomes our destiny. Many have tried, but no one has developed an antidote for death. The reality of the resurrection is that death has been defeated! It is no longer the impregnable enemy, for Christ marched through the gates of Hades and claimed decisive victory over death. Do not allow a fear of death to prevent you from experiencing a full and abundant life. Death cannot rob you of the eternal life that is your inheritance as a child of God. Jesus has prepared a place for you in heaven that surpasses your imagination.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

4. 4. GUILT,GUILT,GUILT,GUILT,GUILT,GUILT,GUILT,GUILT,GUILT,

Running from God will never alleviate our problems – or quell our guilt, or quiet our consciences. Running from God will never cure our restlessness and discontent–it will only make our situations worse. Only running toward God will bring us healing, restoration, joy and peace.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Many of us attempt to “run injured” in our spiritual lives. We are carrying emotional and spiritual injuries from our pasts – unforgiveness, hurt, guilt, anger, shame, bitterness, pain, abuse, injustice – that we have not addressed. We can never move on if we refuse to admit we are wounded. Allow Him to go into those broken places in your soul and mend them so you can run your race and do all that God has called you to do!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Blame hurts. So whether guilty or not, we waste lots of time and mental energy trying to find someone else to carry it for us. Jesus offers us a better way to deal with blame. Once we acknowledge our sin and accept Christ’s offer to take it away, we no longer have to carry the weight of our guilt. We can stop looking for someone to blame for what’s wrong with us, and we can stop accepting blame from others trying to do the same.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God is bigger than our failures. When we give our failures to him, he will weave them into his perfect plan for our lives. Although we can’t undo past failures, we can let go of guilt and remorse. We can turn our failures over to God and watch him make something beautiful out of them. The choice is ours.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you are charged unjustly with something you are not guilty of, do not try to defend yourself. The battle is God’s. Leave it to him. He will work it out. Put yourself in the hands of God, and he will see you through. It is perfectly all right to explain things as far as possible. But when it is evident that nobody is willing to listen, then just put it in God’s hands. He knows what he is doing.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Feelings of regret and guilt are common when we’ve experienced a difficult loss in our lives. In fact, working through these feelings is often necessary in dealing with the crisis. But we must never lose sight of this one marvelous truth, this perfect hope: We can trust God; we can trust Him enough to commit even the most difficult and painful experiences of our lives to His care. Life is filled with “what if’s.” It’s always easy to assume that the road unseen must somehow be better than the hard road we’ve traveled. But when we’ve placed our lives in God’s hands, we can rest assured that the path He lays before us will be filled with blessings beyond what we could ever experience on our own.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

5. 5. HATE, HATE, HATE, HATE, HATE, HATE,HATE,HATE,HATE,

Remember, hatred starts off as a seed. And like a weed grows wild and untamed, overtaking what was once a beautiful garden, twisting its beauty. So avoid hate because hate hurts the hater more than the hated, no matter how justified it may seem.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

“Pursuing peace” involves: promoting love not hate; fostering unity among brethren; being a witness of a higher kingdom; and following the non-violence example of Jesus.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We hate feeling empty don’t we? Emptiness leaves us feeling hopeless, worn out, used up, exhausted and alone. We have a lot of things in this world that cause us to become empty – empty bank accounts, wayward children, broken relationships, the death of a loved one, regret and on and on . . . Remember though that it is only through our emptiness that we can be filled!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When we choose to hate, that hate can return to us in the form of consequences that we can never fully prepare for. We can find ourselves alienated from others, angry with ourselves, and hamstrung in our ability to serve Christ effectively.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Most of us are prone to worry about money and the things money can buy. If we don’t have enough, we worry about how to get it; if we have plenty, we worry about whether we really have enough and about how to hang on to what we have. Why does God hate us worrying and being anxious? Because when we worry we are denying the faithfulness of God to meet our needs! Jesus is saying that the key thing in life is not things.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

6. 6. SELFISHNESS, SELFISHNESS,SELFISHNESS,SELFISHNESS,SELFISHNESS,SELFISHNESS,

Selfishness is the foundation for all conflict. When two hearts want different things – and neither is willing to sacrifice for the sake of the other – conflict arises. Selfishness is the cause of war, crime, and interpersonal conflict. By looking out for ourselves, we think we can get what we want from life. But live in humility and wars and conflict cease, assuming all parties willingly participate.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

There are enemy strongholds all around us today, strongholds of darkness: drugs, witchcraft, homosexuality, anger, fear, pride, and selfishness. How desperately this situation needs the assault of truth and of light. God longs to deliver people from these strongholds, and he has given the church this power.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God loves us even when we don’t love ourselves, God loves us even when others don’t love us, God loves us even when we don’t love him! There is no if to his love, there is no selfishness to his love! He created us to love us, he loves us so he created us! There is no love like the love of God!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The moment you became a Christian, your sinful nature died, but there remained sinful aspects of your character that had not gone to their graves willingly. If these sinful attitudes are allowed to remain alive, they will stifle the fruits of the Spirit. Your temper may prevent some from coming to Jesus. Your selfishness will hinder you from being a blessing to those around you. Your ambition could cause you to use others to meet your goals. Your family may be suffering because of some areas of your life that you have never allowed Jesus to put to death. Allow God to complete His work in you and see what fruit your life produces.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

7. 7. SERVING,SERVING,SERVING,SERVING,SERVING,SERVING,SERVING,

A non-serving Christian is a contradiction.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God did not put us on Earth just to live for ourselves. He wants us to make the world a better place! If we’re not fulfilling our purpose, we’re missing the whole point of life. There’s a word for this: ministry. Every Christian is a minister. Not every Christian is a pastor, but every Christian is to be a minister. That means you use your talents and gifts to make a contribution in life, to be a giver, not a taker. The truth is however, serving God by serving others is not always easy. Sometimes you’re going to get discouraged. So what do you do when you start to get discouraged? You remember two things. First, remember that you’re going to receive a reward that’s going to go on for eternity. The second thing to remember is that God uses every little thing. Nothing is insignificant when you serve God. None of it is in vain. So be encouraged to keep on serving for serving is the key to a fulfilling life.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God likes variety! God has given us different gifts, different backgrounds, different personalities, and different strengths for a reason. Just as the unique pieces in a puzzle fit together to make a perfect whole, so we, as different parts of the body, can fit together to make a dynamic whole–serving God, loving one another, and reaching out to a lost world. We can learn from one another because of our differences. And we can accomplish more because of our differences.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God does not want just our sacrifices or our good deeds. He will not share us with our ambitions or hobbies. He wants all of us. God is jealous, not because our rejection hurts his ego, but because it hurts his heart. He knows our greatest needs and that he can only truly fill us with joy. Am I walking humbly with God, or am I serving the god of self?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Before you were born, God decided in advance what contribution he wanted you to make with your life. God didn’t put you on this planet just to take up space, to use resources, and to die. No! He put you here to serve him by serving others. And nobody else can be you. If you don’t serve God the way he intended for you to serve him, then the world misses that part of the jigsaw puzzle. You serve God by serving others. So any time you help somebody else, God says it’s like you’re doing it for him. You’re practicing on Earth what you’re going to do in eternity.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

It is good to want to serve Christ as an expression of love for what He has done for you. Yet when our activity consumes our time and energies so that we have no time for Him, we have become too busy! We are not called to continually sit at the feet of Jesus, otherwise our service for Him would cease. Neither are we called to serve Him incessantly, without taking time to find restoration in His presence. Have we been serving God so diligently that we have not had time to spend with Him?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

8. 8. STRESS,STRESS,STRESS,STRESS,STRESS,STRESS,STRESS,STRESS,STRESS,

Instead of getting anxious, fearful or stressed out by our trials, it actually helps us realize that just because we’re going through a trial doesn’t mean we’ve failed in some way or missed God’s direction for our life or that we should shrink back from our destiny. Remember, our challenges won’t change our destiny.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Stress is in all of our lives. There is pressure from all sides. Relationships, finances, health, how do we get any relief? Where can we go to get help? Paul wrote, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles.” When we are comforted by His grace and mercy, God wants us to go and comfort others that He brings our way. We are to comfort others in the same way we were helped. God has commanded us to take His love to the streets. That is what He did. Today, bring your own burdens to the Lord. Let Him comfort you. And when He does, go with the same compassion He had and go comfort someone else.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When we go through major disappointments in life, our natural reaction is to pull back and isolate ourselves. When we go through disappointment or crisis or loss, that’s when we really need our friends the most. We need to accept help from others. God doesn’t intend for us to handle all the pain and stress in our life by ourselves. We were wired for each other. We need each other. We’re social beings. We’re made to be in relationships.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When we try to do more than God planned for us, it’s only natural that we will find ourselves constantly out of time or stressed over our schedule.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Instead of getting anxious, fearful or stressed out by our trials, it actually helps us realize that just because we’re going through a trial doesn’t mean we’ve failed in some way or missed God’s direction for our life or that we should shrink back from our destiny. Remember, our challenges won’t change our destiny.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

What is our attitude when the props we have depended on are suddenly gone? Are we grateful for the trials that can strengthen our faith? For the child of God, great stress can develop great faith—and reveal God’s great grace. You see, when we feel the stress of the storm we learn the strength of the anchor.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Think of a conflict you’re currently enduring. What sword have you been using to win the battle instead of trusting God to show you a stress-reducing way to handle it? Make peace with your enemy (an “enemy” is anyone whose will is opposed to yours). Even if you’re an innocent victim of the battle, do a good deed that will melt your enemy’s heart. This might feel like a difficult mountain to climb, but it is the route of faith. It is the route that leads us away from the emotional torment of the conflict to the inner peace that only Christ can provide – the only peace that lasts

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

How many times a day could you use strength? We are pulled in every direction and live under a lot of stress. Life can be difficult and so many times we feels so weak to do anything about it. Today come to God. Ask Him to reveal to you how truly great His love for you really is. As He does, you will experience all the inner strength you need.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Manage your mind, because it’s the key to peace and happiness. An unmanaged mind leads to tension. A managed mind leads to tranquility. An unmanaged mind leads to conflict. A managed mind leads to confidence. An unmanaged mind leads to stress. When you don’t try to control your mind and the way you direct your thoughts, you will have an enormous amount of stress in your life. But a managed mind leads to strength and security and serenity.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When we strive to reach our goals to feel a sense of value and worth, it’s easy to get busier, to stress more, all the time. We are depending on ourselves. But when we know who we are in Christ and how important we are to him, our outlook on life changes. Only then can God bring the best out of us and help us accomplish his purpose for our journey.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Storms have a particular purpose in God’s nature and order. They bring stress upon the environment. Weak limbs yield to the wind and fall to the ground. Major storms bring down entire trees and those things that have weak foundations give way to wind and rain. In essence, storms reveal the strength of any foundation. If you look carefully you will find God in the midst of the storm. It is there He does some of His finest work in our lives. Struggles in life allow us to learn about our self and move to places with Him that we would never go on our own. Remember this, life isn’t about waiting for the storms to pass; it’s about learning to dance in the rain. You are never alone in the storm. God says I am always there in the midst.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The best way to cope with stress in our life is by turning our days and even our moments over to God. Trying to grab the reins of our lives and proclaim that we are in charge is not only foolish but it is stressful. Whenever we impose our own wills upon our world – we invite stress into our lives … needlessly. But when we accept His will instead of our own, we will discover inner peace. Do you feel overwhelmed? Satan does some of his worst work on exhausted Christians when nerves are frayed and the mind is faint. Turn your concerns and your prayers over to God. Trust Him. Trust Him completely. Trust Him today. Trust Him always.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Tired? Stressed out? Overwhelmed and can’t go on like this another day? Ever thought to ask God to make it easier for you and alleviate the pressure you are carrying? Because he can you know…..But you have to ask. Then watch in amazement how he shifts things around and how you never had to carry all of that yourself in the first place.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When you rejoice in the midst of your difficulties, you’re giving the enemy a black eye. He doesn’t know what to do with people who keep giving God praise despite their circumstances. Learn how to smile and laugh. Quit being so uptight and stressed out. Make your choice to enjoy your life to the fullest today.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

You may be in a stressful situation this morning. You may be thinking, This doesn’t seem right. God, I don’t understand it. Friend, you are never going to understand everything you go through in life or why certain things come against you. You simply must learn to trust God anyway. You must learn to keep a good attitude in the midst of the chaos and confusion, knowing that God is still in control.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Are you letting God be God? Understand today … God wants to lead you. He wants to strengthen you and He wants to give you direction. God wants to move and manifest for you, in you, and through you. But the question is … are you giving Him full reign in your lives? Or are you hindering Him based on your desire to be in control? Are you willing to step out of the way and let God be God? Are you willing to allow His word to be the only answer to your situation? By allowing God to respond for you … it eliminates the stress of trying to figure it all out.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

How many times a day could you use strength? We are pulled in every direction and live under a lot of stress. Life can be difficult and so many times we feels so weak to do anything about it. Today come to God. Ask Him to reveal to you how truly great His love for you really is. As He does, you will experience all the inner strength you need.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

9. 9. TEMPTATION,TEMPTATION,TEMPTATION,TEMPTATION,TEMPTATION,

Strength is a mighty gift to have from God. With strength you can have many options. You can have strength to make it through a tough time. Strength to accomplish a difficult task. Strength to overcome overwhelming circumstances. Strength when all else has failed. Strength to be patient and wait on the Lord. Strength to tear down strongholds. Strength to get through another day. Strength to outlast a temptation. Strength to give it another try. Strength to accept grace. Strength to face your deepest fears. Strength to start over. Strength to admit when your wrong. Strength to accept your weakness. Strength to trust in God. Today God has all the strength you need. It’s yours for the asking. When you find yourself in a tight spot and you feel weak just say “Heavenly Father I need your strength just to make the next step”

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

It is easy to intellectually hold that Christ’s power is greater than our temptation and struggle, but it’s another matter entirely too functionally live out that truth. Put feet to our faith then, as we gear up and put on the whole armor of God.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If we were more consistent in confessing our temptations, we wouldn’t have to confess our sins.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The great temptation of spiritual “growth” is in thinking we have all the answers and thus desiring to establish our own path with its own set of rules – we become like the know-it-all teenager. When this occurs, we must immediately, and with great determination, humble ourselves and put to death the rebellious pride which leads us astray. We must daily remember the children we really are…and the children we need to continually become.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
We have been placed in this world with all its beauty and with all its temptations. But we must NEVER become identified by the values of the world or driven by anything it can offer. Our home is defined as the place we feel most comfortable; the place we store our treasures and find rest for our soul. But we must remember that our citizenship is in Heaven, and for all the days we walk this earth, we must walk as though we are just passing through! “Take everything I own but leave me Jesus and I will have enough!”

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We are called by Jesus to walk differently. To share joy, show gentleness, have patience, bring peace, to have self-control and to walk faithfully. God gives us His Spirit to help us demonstrate these qualities of His light. Yet every one of us knows the temptation to dwell on the negative, be critical, let discouragement wash over us, or settle into a pity party.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Why do we go through these crushing disappointments, these wrenching heartaches, these hard trials, these pressures, these tribulations, these temptations, these times of failure as well as times of joy, blessing, glory, and ecstasy in the Lord? What is He doing to us? He is refining the silver until He can see His likeness again. This is what God is doing with us.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Life is a journey of faith. There are often times when we feel that God has made things worse. We can be tempted to believe that we could have done it better than God has. The essence of faith is to resist this temptation, to wrestle with God by sharing our heart with Him, and ultimately – to put our trust in Him.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Reading the scriptures, praying, attending worship, doing acts of service for God, and surrendering moment by moment to Christ are all ways we can work to guard ourselves against giving in to temptation and sin. Don’t forget, it is better to avoid trouble than to be rescued from it.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God had set limits on Satan’s influence. Jesus is fully aware of every temptation and test you will encounter, and He stands ready to deliver you. Temptation might catch you by surprise, but Jesus is already interceding with the Father on your behalf. Remember that temptation is not a sin. When you are tempted, turn immediately to Jesus. He will take you to the Father, and you will overcome the temptation, for Jesus has overcome everything you can face in the world. If you are grappling with temptation, Jesus is interceding for you with the Father even now. Be steadfast and encouraged!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

There is a subtle temptation that encourages Christians to be “practical.” That is, they try to do God’s work in man’s way. “Getting results” becomes the primary focus. It almost seems that we believe that the end justifies the means. Don’t be led away by the world’s reasoning. An examination of God’s Word shows that the means are sometimes even more important than the results. It is never wise to attempt to do God’s work in man’s way. It is an age-old temptation that seems to make sense on the surface but often is at variance with the purposes of God.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

10. 10. GRUDGES,GRUDGES,GRUDGES,GRUDGES,GRUDGES,GRUDGES,GRUDGES,GRUDGES,

Forgiveness means remembering — and learning from the memory — without demanding repayment or retribution. Unforgiveness is a form of punishment: it’s payback time. Holding a grudge to protect ourselves from getting hurt again never works either. Grudges do not free us from the pain of bad memories. It chains us to them. When we free others from the debts they owe us for hurting us (whether they seek it or not, whether they’re still alive or not), we free ourselves and our healing begins — OUR healing!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We can do silly things when we’re caught up in resentment. We’ll say things like, “I’m going to get him!” Then we often do the ridiculous to make that happen. When we give in to resentment, we act in self-destructive ways and hurt ourselves much more than those we’re holding grudges against.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Forgiving one another is crucial to the success of marriage and family relationships. Forgiveness means that family members do not allow anger to grow, hold grudges, or keep a record of misdeeds. Forgiveness can open up a whole new perspective on life.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

11. 11. ANGER,ANGER,ANGER,ANGER,ANGER,ANGER,ANGER,ANGER,ANGER,

Think of the impact anger has on your family. As parents, we’re often tempted to use anger to motivate our children. It works in the short-term. When you get angry, you put the fear of God (or the fear of you) into your children. Your kids may give you short-term obedience, but you’ll lose in the long-term. The end result of misplaced anger is alienation. You alienate the very people you love the most. Eventually, you’ll get more anger back and finally just apathy. No one wants to be around you. The truth is, you always lose when you lose your temper. You may lose your reputation, your job, your children, or the love of your husband or wife when you don’t control your anger.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Think before you speak. Delay is a tremendous remedy for anger. You don’t need to delay indefinitely. If you’ve got an issue you need to deal with, you need to do so. Anger delayed indefinitely becomes bitterness. That’s worse than anger. Bitterness is always a sin; anger isn’t.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Did you ever think about the fact that there is only one letter difference between “anger” and “danger”? When you get angry, you are in dangerous territory. You are about to hurt others — and yourself — with your own anger.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Forgiving one another is crucial to the success of marriage and family relationships. Forgiveness means that family members do not allow anger to grow, hold grudges, or keep a record of misdeeds. Forgiveness can open up a whole new perspective on life.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Anger and bitterness always affect us. Holding a grudge against somebody destroys us, not them.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Unrelenting anger and frustration could be signs that we’ve closed out God, because we’re trying to control a situation that’s not going well.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We must remember that each time we get angry at someone and want to place the blame when things go wrong or not the way we expected them to…..That it’s god who has control over all operations in this universe. Maybe your plan, wasn’t his plan. Even if the person or people involved played a role in messing something up. It’s him we call unto and know that he is the one who has the true handle on all situations.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

This helpful life tip that will save us a lot of heartache and conflict in our life: When other people raise their voice, lower yours — in your marriage, in your parenting, in your friendships, and at work. That’s called strength under control. Remember this gem: Gentleness defuses conflict. It deescalates anger.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

What does your presence bring to those you encounter? Some people bring negativity. Some bring joy. Some bring the jarring-edge of unresolved anger or hurt, while others bring calm. You can’t manage anyone’s responses to life except your own. However, paying attention to your own responses will help you think about what you are bringing to encounters you have with others.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We need to tend to our heart and be the gatekeeper of it… being careful what attitudes we nurse, what thoughts we allow to make paths in our mind, what images and words we allow media entertainment to deposit there. The essence of our life springs from our heart. When our heart is at peace, peace springs from within us. When our heart is flooded with anxiety, anger, or edginess that is what will spring forth. Our entire life is affected by the wellspring of our heart.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Satan loves it when we give him an easy way in, and uncontrolled anger is an open door.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you’ve been struggling with a mountain of fear, anxiety, depression, un-forgiveness, anger, defeat, condemnation, despair … it’s time to step into the freedom Jesus Christ died to give you. Don’t live paralyzed in a place that should only have been a pit stop.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We really can put our love to the test. By asking ourselves the following questions Am I patient and kind to people? Am I envious, boastful, and proud? Do I dishonor others? Am I self-seeking? Am I easily angered? Do I keep record of wrongs? Do I rejoice with the truth or delight in evil? Do I protect? Trust? Hope? Persevere always? We will find that the answers to these questions reveal where we need God’s help to grow in love so we can pass the test next time.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

It is God’s desire that anywhere there is a Christian, God has a way for people to learn of His salvation. Whenever an unbeliever meets a Christian, the unbeliever ought to be face to face with everything he needs to know in order to follow Christ. Sadly, we can often be so involved in our sin that we are completely disoriented to God, ill-equipped to direct others to Him. If our lives are filled with hypocrisy, we may turn people away from God, rather than helping them come to Him. If our lives are filled with doubt or anger, we will impede others from coming to Christ. Our lives ought to be a highway of holiness, providing easy access to God for anyone around us who seeks Him. Ask God to remove any obstacle in your life that hinders others from coming to know Jesus.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you think you have no purpose in this life or no reason to live , you are sadly mistaken. God placed each and every one of us here for his sole reason. One that we cannot doubt or question. And the things that anger us, or that we struggle with in our hearts will not matter to us when we take our last few seconds of breath in this world. Why should we let those things affect us now? Live for God and be happy.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When you are a new believer, you will not always know how to relate to others in a spiritually mature way. You may battle with envy, anger, or unforgiveness. But the longer you walk with Christ, the more you should relate to others as He does. It is helpful for you to measure the progress in your spiritual life from time to time. A good way to evaluate your spiritual growth is to ask mature Christians around you if your actions reveal spiritual maturity.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Is your anger turning into bitterness? Is your anger causing you to speak in an unchristian manner to someone or to gossip about them? Is your anger causing you to make excuses for your own ungodly behavior? Is your anger preventing you from acting in a loving, redemptive, and Christ-like way toward someone? You must examine any anger within you and allow God to remove any sinful attitudes that your anger may have produced.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Facing tragedy, or life storms of any kind, can be extremely difficult. You may be thinking, “I don’t know how I could ever get through this.” Or you may be battling powerful feelings of despair, suffering, confusion, fear, worry, and even anger. These are all normal responses to tragedy. But as difficult as this life storm may be, you are not alone. God is with you always. He loves you, and cares about what is going on in your life. He hears your cries and sees your pain. Moreover, He understands.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Living through a tragedy of any kind can be a traumatic experience. You can feel as if your life has been shattered—that nothing will ever be the same—that peace and joy could never again be possible. How about you? How are you coping? Are you feeling depressed? Experiencing panic attacks? Having trouble sleeping? Lashing out in anger? Isolating yourself from family and friends? Don’t hesitate to reach out for help. Your family and friends are depending on you, just as you are undoubtedly looking to them for encouragement and support.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Difficult circumstances can bring about many emotions in the hurting heart. One of those emotions is anger. You can face and resolve your anger by first being honest with yourself and with God about what you are feeling. He is big enough to handle your anger and to help you resolve it. Talk to Him about your doubts and fears, and what is causing rage in your heart. Tell Him, “God, I am so angry!” He will not turn His back on you. So, give your angry feelings to the Lord, and trust Him to replace those feelings with peace, forgiveness, and strength. Freedom from unchecked anger is freedom to heal.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Consider your current circumstances. Think of it as the race that is set before you. Imagine you’re running hurdles in a track meet. Are you spiritually fit to run? Or is depression, fear, anger, worry, or doubt weighing you down? Rather than allow these to hinder you, why not view them as obstacles or hurdles on the track. Start your training by talking to God about every thing that is holding you back. Then trust Him to help you leap over each one.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Can you give thanks to God in the midst of turmoil? It’s difficult, isn’t it? During troubled times we often are busy making requests, not thanking Him for our situation. Everything we hear on the news screams turmoil. Strife, division, anger, hatred; all play a role in making life uncertain and fearful. Our thanksgiving is not dependent upon our circumstances. We can learn to give thanks even under the greatest provocations. It’s not easy to be thankful when our world is falling apart, and God has yet to answer our prayers. It’s not easy to be thankful when our pain is so great. We do have much to be thankful for however. So let us count our blessings and acknowledge God’s providential care for us. Let us rejoice in His love and mercy and grace.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Never mind the person or people who cause you pain and anger….Because it is through your experiences with them that your spirit has grown a step higher from the lessons of tolerance and forgiveness.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

12. 12. WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY, WORRY,

Happiness requires letting go and learning to forget. Worry won’t change the past, so forget what can’t be changed and focus on the future.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Worry is unreasonable for a couple of reasons. First, worry exaggerates the problem. Second, worry doesn’t work. To worry about something you can’t change is useless. And to worry about something you can change is stupid. Just go change it!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Worry is unhelpful. Worry cannot change the past, and worry cannot control the future. All it does is mess up today. The only thing that worry changes is you. It makes you miserable! It’s never solved a problem. It’s unhelpful.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Most people are worrying about their own plans and aren’t looking out for the interests of others. Most people don’t get up in the morning and give their first thought to how someone else is doing. Most people are concerned with their own problems. And, that’s why most people are unhappy with their lives! If you want to be one of those rare, unselfish people, you’ve got to change your focus. You have to shift your focus away from yourself to other people. That’s not something that comes naturally, so it’s something you have to learn to do.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The path ahead of you is strewn with obstacles. People will oppose you. There will be financial setbacks, time pressures, illnesses and misfortunes. Some of the biggest obstacles will be inside of you: self-doubt, insecurity, procrastination, and worry. You must give yourself permission to succeed.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When we worry about tomorrow, we pull tomorrow’s clouds over today’s sunshine. Roll your burden on the Lord. The Bible says be anxious for nothing. And that means nothing. Do not worry about your children, do not worry about your money, do not worry about your future, do not worry about anything. Your Heavenly Father does care for you, and it is His good pleasure to give you the Kingdom.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Worry is essentially a control issue. It’s trying to control the uncontrollable. We can’t control the economy, so we worry about the economy. We can’t control our children, so we worry about our children. We can’t control the future, so we worry about the future. But worry never solves anything! It’s stewing without doing.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We often find ourselves carrying so many needless weights and burdens through life. Jealously, comparison, anger, worry, anxiety, insecurity, bitterness, sadness, unforgiveness – do any of these sound familiar to you? Take regular inventory of every area of your life. What weights are you carrying that could be dragging you down? Let Jesus free you of those burdens. You don’t have time to carry them!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

There are so many attacks that come against us daily that it is easy to get discouraged. That is their purpose. But true happiness is not in things, jobs, or success. It is not in people. The Joy of the Lord is your strength. Remember when you were first saved how you felt so light, so happy, filled with joy? That is what happens when you lay your burdens down at the cross. But we too often pick them back up again, and the heaviness returns. Leave your baggage at the cross. Pray and let God worry about it.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We’re on the journey of life and we want to move forward, not backwards or sideways. The trouble is, however, that we’ve never been this way before but we have a guide that is available. We may be on our own, but we don’t have to go it alone. God is available to guide us. We don’t have to worry. We don’t have to fear the new directions and choices life brings our way. The Lord God will guide us. Let us remember to always be thankful for this wonderful guide.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We don’t have to worry about failing, falling, or fainting because God is with us. He’s got this mountain! We still must climb it but when we choose to concentrate on God, not on the mountain, we can walk up it, one boot at a time.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God shows us just enough for today, and tomorrow He will show us what we need for that. Do not worry, or concern your self over tomorrow. When the problems show up, so will the answer.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Many of us worry over what we do not have, instead of thanking God for all that we do have. Let’s take time, today, to offer Him our heartfelt thanks for all the blessings He has lavished upon us!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God wants us to run the race that he has for us. It’s a plan that is custom designed for our life. When we focus on God’s race, we won’t need to worry about the race everybody else is running. Be sure to keep your eyes on the finish line of the lane in front of you.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

There’s no sense in worrying about what lies ahead or what is out of our control. God will give you what you need to cross that bridge when you come to it. In then meantime simply relax and trust him.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Each time we pray for God to fix things or make things better, we are making it difficult for him when our focus remains on worry, concern, and doubt. Turn your attention towards God and allow him to be your focal point , so that you are in the position to receive his blessings. Then keep yourself reminded when you look back at all the times in your life that he always came through and delivered.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Saying that you trust in God….But then turning around and worrying about everything or having doubts in your life, really isn’t trusting him at all.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Facing tragedy, or life storms of any kind, can be extremely difficult. You may be thinking, “I don’t know how I could ever get through this.” Or you may be battling powerful feelings of despair, suffering, confusion, fear, worry, and even anger. These are all normal responses to tragedy. But as difficult as this life storm may be, you are not alone. God is with you always. He loves you, and cares about what is going on in your life. He hears your cries and sees your pain. Moreover, He understands.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Consider your current circumstances. Think of it as the race that is set before you. Imagine you’re running hurdles in a track meet. Are you spiritually fit to run? Or is depression, fear, anger, worry, or doubt weighing you down? Rather than allow these to hinder you, why not view them as obstacles or hurdles on the track. Start your training by talking to God about every thing that is holding you back. Then trust Him to help you leap over each one.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

What of tomorrow? Tomorrow hasn’t come; today is what we need to concern ourselves with. When we start to get anxious of the things that may or may not happen, the only thing we can do is give it over in prayer. There we can find God’s peace in place of our worry. We don’t have to live in anxiety of our ‘tomorrows’.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Most of us are prone to worry about money and the things money can buy. If we don’t have enough, we worry about how to get it; if we have plenty, we worry about whether we really have enough and about how to hang on to what we have. Why does God hate us worrying and being anxious? Because when we worry we are denying the faithfulness of God to meet our needs! Jesus is saying that the key thing in life is not things.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If someone offered to take all your anxieties away from you would you take them up on the offer? Or would anxiety, by its own nature, cause you to worry that the person would not be able to take care of your situation? Next time you worry, start with the thought that God deeply cares for you! He cares for you with all the resources of His mighty power and wisdom. With that in mind, you can feel free to start today and give Him all your cares.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

13. 13. RESENTMENT,RESENTMENT,RESENTMENT,RESENTMENT,RESENTMENT,

Recognize no one is perfect. When we hate somebody, we tend to lose our perspective about that person. When we’re filled with resentment and bitterness and hurt, we tend to dehumanize the offender. We treat them like an animal. But we’re all in the same boat.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you hang on to resentment, it always hurts you more than anyone else. Resentment is self-destructive and counterproductive. Resentment just makes no sense. Holding on to resentment doesn’t hurt anybody but you. Let it go! For your own sake, you must forgive. Do they deserve it? No. But do you deserve forgiveness from God? No. Those who experience grace are gracious.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you’re still holding on to resentment, then someone is controlling you. Have you ever said, “You make me so mad”? What you’re admitting at that point is, “You are controlling me.” The only way you get this person out of your mind and heart is to heal it with grace — God’s grace.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Resentment is self-torture. It is a self-inflicted wound. Whenever you’re resentful, it always hurts you more than the person you’re bitter against. In fact, while you’re still worrying about something that happened years ago, the other person has forgotten about it! Your past is past, and it can’t hurt you any more unless you hold on to it.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

14. 14. DOUBT,DOUBT,DOUBT,DOUBT,DOUBT,DOUBT,DOUBT,DOUBT,

You don’t need great faith to make it through the storm in your life. You just need faith in the right person.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When life gets tough, when you’re overwhelmed with doubt, or when you wonder if living for Christ is worth the effort, remember that you are not home yet. At death you won’t leave home — you’ll go home.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Opening the door to doubt, even just a little crack, will leave us unstable and easily swayed.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When in doubt, keep climbing!! When discouraged, keep climbing!! When tired, keep climbing!! It is closer to the top than it is to start all over again.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Life will never be free from hardships. Everyone suffers because of the presence of sin—whether it’s from our own wrong choices, the choices of others or the result from a living in a fallen world. We have a choice, we can let this fact fill us with darkness and doubt or we can trust in the Lord. When we finally realize we can’t deal with our circumstances, He says to us, come to Me. Tell Me about your frustrations and fears. Let us remember that whatever we are facing He wants to help us. He says, I’ll understand and I’ll help you to deal with it. He lovingly says come to Me and let’s face today together.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We often greatly misunderstand the importance of waiting seasons. So much is at stake, and so many things are transpiring that seldom are noticed. The way we respond to “the wait” can mean the difference between life and death. The Father waits to see if we will trust in His unfailing character. The enemy tempts us to take matters into our own hands. You are really the one who decides how difficult your tests will be. Where you are dead to yourself there can be no enticement. Dead men do not covet, lust or fear. They have no worries, doubts or pressure. So are you when your life is wholly given to Christ. When you release your life to Him, all these things become His responsibility. You need only to ask for His wisdom, believe that it will come, and act confidently in faith. The person who does this will receive great things from the Lord…things that defy human logic, reason and ability. The one who lives by faith will learn to tap into the God-realm.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Some Christians doubt that God can use them, because they don’t have any great talents or skills. However, God doesn’t necessarily look to use people with great talent; He examines the heart. God often chooses to use lowly or seemingly foolish people so that He can show His greatness through them. If you find yourself broken and in obvious need of God’s help, don’t despair. God can use you anyway, because God is not necessarily looking for ability; He’s looking for availability.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Jesus is committed to our journey, and still in complete control. In His perfect timing He will calm ALL the wind and waves – ALL the roaring seas. When doubts begin to surface, we must draw even closer, hold on even tighter, and trust Him even deeper. No matter what battles we see with our eyes and hear with our ears, we must be determined to live each moment by faith and refuse to be afraid.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Some of the great advances in God’s plans have come through “interruptions” to the normal routine. Yet all too often we respond to the interruptions of our well-ordered lives with attitudes like frustration, irritation, fear, and doubt. God’s surprises in our day are full of opportunities. Let’s welcome them as a new “to-do list” from Him.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Each time we pray for God to fix things or make things better, we are making it difficult for him when our focus remains on worry, concern, and doubt. Turn your attention towards God and allow him to be your focal point , so that you are in the position to receive his blessings. Then keep yourself reminded when you look back at all the times in your life that he always came through and delivered.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Saying that you trust in God….But then turning around and worrying about everything or having doubts in your life, really isn’t trusting him at all.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you think you have no purpose in this life or no reason to live , you are sadly mistaken. God placed each and every one of us here for his sole reason. One that we cannot doubt or question. And the things that anger us, or that we struggle with in our hearts will not matter to us when we take our last few seconds of breath in this world. Why should we let those things affect us now? Live for God and be happy.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Don’t become discouraged when you face opposition. Opposition may indicate that you are acting in obedience to God. Do not let opposition cause you to doubt God’s will. Examine your heart. If you have done what you know He has asked you to do, trust Him to see you through the antagonism that comes from those who are not walking with Him.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Difficult circumstances can bring about many emotions in the hurting heart. One of those emotions is anger. You can face and resolve your anger by first being honest with yourself and with God about what you are feeling. He is big enough to handle your anger and to help you resolve it. Talk to Him about your doubts and fears, and what is causing rage in your heart. Tell Him, “God, I am so angry!” He will not turn His back on you. So, give your angry feelings to the Lord, and trust Him to replace those feelings with peace, forgiveness, and strength. Freedom from unchecked anger is freedom to heal.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Consider your current circumstances. Think of it as the race that is set before you. Imagine you’re running hurdles in a track meet. Are you spiritually fit to run? Or is depression, fear, anger, worry, or doubt weighing you down? Rather than allow these to hinder you, why not view them as obstacles or hurdles on the track. Start your training by talking to God about every thing that is holding you back. Then trust Him to help you leap over each one.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Love has no limits. Love never says, “You’ve gone too far. I can’t love you now.” “All things” means everything is included. Christlike love leaves no doubt in the mind of another that you will continue to love steadfastly. Do those close to you know that they can fail and do foolish things, yet you will not falter in your love for them? Are others assured that, even when they hurt you, you still love them, holding nothing against them?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

15. 15. TEMPER,TEMPER,TEMPER,TEMPER,TEMPER,TEMPER,TEMPER,TEMPER,

Overcoming a temper is not accomplished overnight. But through prayer, Bible study, and reliance upon God’s Holy Spirit, ungodly anger can be overcome. We may have allowed anger to become entrenched in our lives by habitual practice, but we can also practice responding correctly until that, too, becomes a habit and God is glorified in our response.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Our temper is often motivated by selfishness and directed toward other people instead of toward sin.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Are you being tested today? Remember, God allows testing to come to improve the temper of your soul and to strengthen you for a more effective toil for Jesus Christ.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Maturity is the ability to use the adrenaline that anger creates, not to lose your temper and add to the problem, but to correct a situation or to contribute to changing the nature of the difficulty.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

16. 16. DISCOURAGEMENT,DISCOURAGEMENT,DISCOURAGEMENT,DISCOURAGEMENT,

In a genuine friendship, one’s faithfulness can shore up the others in times of discouragement or fear. That is what Jesus is to us—our always faithful, forever Friend.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We put in long hours, we experience a unique form of loneliness, and we face difficult decisions everyday. It’s easy to get discouraged. Discouragement is one of the most deadly of diseases. Everybody can catch it, and you can catch it more than once. It’s highly contagious and spreads easily and quickly. Recognize where it’s coming from – The answer may be just around the corner. Anybody who watches basketball knows that the game is often won in the final second.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We are called by Jesus to walk differently. To share joy, show gentleness, have patience, bring peace, to have self-control and to walk faithfully. God gives us His Spirit to help us demonstrate these qualities of His light. Yet every one of us knows the temptation to dwell on the negative, be critical, let discouragement wash over us, or settle into a pity party.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
There are times when God draws us into the wilderness, yes. However, if you have wandered into the desert place because of disillusionment, discouragement or depression, God invites you to listen for his still, small voice. God will direct you out of the wilderness and back into the fellowship of believers.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God understands as well. While he has irrefutable proof that the final victory was won on the cross and by the empty tomb, he understands our weaknesses and shortcoming and does not condemn us in our times of discouragement and dwindling faith. In such times of great despair, he only requires of us two things. One, that we stay steadfast in our knowledge that his faithful love endures forever. And two, that we stay steadfast in our belief that his only intentions are to bless and redeem us and those we love. As we lean into those two truths, he will strengthen our faith and increase our trust.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

17. 17. TRIALS,TRIALS,TRIALS,TRIALS,TRIALS,TRIALS,TRIALS,TRIALS,

Either we are in adversity, just getting over it or about to go into it, or perhaps, all three at once. Living in this world is not easy and trouble comes with it. The issue is not whether we will experience it, but how we will respond to it. The Scriptures clearly teach us that trials are a part of a walk with God. No man or woman who has achieved much in the kingdom has been spared some form of trial or adversity. Adversity is God’s workbench where He conforms us to His image. So keep looking up, no matter how bumpy your road of life gets. Things could get worse and probably will, but for those saved by Christ, eternal glory is just around the bend.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God will never take us through a time of testing that is too tough for us to deal with. No matter how difficult your trials, you can bank on His promise. No trial is too great for us with the power of God. He will give us a way to endure it, to resist it, or to get through it.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Whenever something frustrating happens, don’t immediately become upset. Instead, ask yourself if this problem is really worth getting aggravated over: is this a five minute problem, a five hour problem, a five month problem, or a five year problem? Remember that God may be using your short-term problem for a long-term purpose. God will work through your current trials and difficulties in order to produce lasting benefits such as faith, perseverance, and spiritual maturity. That’s why it’s important to take a long-term look at your short-term problems.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Having a clear picture of what the race of life is all about, where we are heading and what we are likely to encounter along the way will sustain us for the duration. Many people do not finish their race, simply because they lack a long-term vision. Yes, trials will come in life, but we do not have to drop out of the race because of them.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Instead of getting anxious, fearful or stressed out by our trials, it actually helps us realize that just because we’re going through a trial doesn’t mean we’ve failed in some way or missed God’s direction for our life or that we should shrink back from our destiny. Remember, our challenges won’t change our destiny.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Trials are just some of the paths we have had to travel in life. The Christian life does not promise a life without pain or sorrow, but it does promise that there will always be Someone who will be with you through it all – Our precious Lord and Savior.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
We, like our Savior, face trials that bring fear and trembling to the very depths of our souls, but like Christ, we too, must ultimately seek God’s will over our own. When we entrust our lives to Him completely and without reservation, He gives us the strength to meet any challenge, the courage to face any trial, and the wisdom to live in His righteousness.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

No one enjoys going through trials, especially feeling alone in them. But in these moments, God asks us to trust Him. Hard times will pass. But with patience, prayer, and a heart full of hope and trust, we can live through them, knowing God can give us a deep joy that will outlast any pain and sorrow.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Do not get beaten down in the trials of life. God has brought you this far and He is going to bring you the rest of the way. Take courage and know that the Lord is going to fix this somehow. Say it out loud: “I do not know how, but somehow God is going to take care of it.”

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

There are a lot of people today, maybe you, who are carrying heavy burdens. Some of those burdens are so heavy and overwhelming that many are about to collapse under their crushing weight. Many times, the seemingly overwhelming burden of responsibility is enough to cause many of us to want to run away from our problems and just disappear. Jesus did not promise us a life free from pain and suffering and troubles. He did promise however, that He would be there beside us as we traveled that long and difficult road filled with trials and burdens. The life of a Christian is not always easy, but we believe that we are traveling on a path that will make not only our faith but us stronger. We are being refined and purified through the many trials and burdens of life. When you feel those moments coming on remind yourself to cast all of your anxieties upon the Lord, because He cares for you.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you are going through trials now, take hope in the fact that almost everyone in the Bible who did great things for God also had to endure great hardships.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We are not expected to enjoy trials or to celebrate suffering. But when these unwelcome visitors arrive, we can look for God’s hand in them and trust that He can use them to make us more like His Son.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

How about you, has life’s trials been so overwhelming lately that you too need a reminder to Count Your Blessings?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The trials that you are going through may just be preparing you for what God has in store for you. If you are ever going to be a leader, you will have to spend some time in the wilderness. When you come out you will have credibility because of what you have experienced and a testimony to share with others.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God is looking for men on whom He can put the weight of all His love and power and faithful promises. God’s engines are strong enough to draw any weight we attach to them. God knows that you can stand that trial; He would not give it to you if you could not. It is His trust in you that explains the trials of life, however bitter they may be. God knows our strength, and He measures it to the last inch; and a trial was never given to any man that was greater than that man’s strength, through God, to bear it.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you are facing trials and difficulties today, be encouraged that God may be testing you because He wants to use you in a deeper way. Like gold having the dross removed, the times of testing also refine us, so that we become more like Him. Persevere, and count it all joy!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you are going through some trials or difficult circumstances, and you are fretting over how you will get through it all – don’t lose hope. Give God the problems and you will find peace because God is bigger than anything this world can throw at you.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Trials are just some of the paths we have had to travel in life. The Christian life does not promise a life without pain or sorrow, but it does promise that there will always be Someone who will be with you through it all – Our precious Lord and Savior.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

18. 18. CONTENTMENT, CONTENTMENT,CONTENTMENT,CONTENTMENT,CONTENTMENT,

Sometimes discontentment can motivate positive, godly change in our lives. Discontentment can be the warning sign that we need to make changes in our walk with God–and that can lead to contentment. When we are contented in life, we can face whatever roadblocks and detours we find. Instead of grumbling about our circumstances, we can look for the opportunities to trust God in new ways and bring glory to Him. We can use our valleys to remind us that only God can fill the emptiness in our lives.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We never seem to be content because we always want to be somewhere other than where we are or doing something different than what we are doing in this moment. But the truth is, real contentment can never be found out there; it can only be found in Christ. Things and people can change on a daily basis, but Jesus is the same yesterday, today and forever. Let’s determine to know the secret of contentment. His name is Jesus.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Heaven is never a reward for “obedient” living; it is a free gift to those who believe in Jesus. We should never feel we are “slaving” under the burden of His commands in order to earn His favor. Rather, we are to joyfully follow because we know that only in Him, only walking with Him in a loving relationship, is there true peace, true contentment…true blessings!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Gratitude is an advanced practice, but it yields abundant possibilities. The more grateful you are, the more authentic you become. Gratitude will change you into a peaceful, conscious, and sacrificial person. You will be able to be present, and you will be able to live in the flow of life. Being grateful will give you meaning because it allows you to capture the full essence of every moment. It takes the burden out of life while adding a dimension of beauty, and it allows you to find contentment even in moments of crisis.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Contentment is not a lack of ambition. It’s not a lack of goals. Contentment means your happiness doesn’t depend on your circumstances. Are you a contented person?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We are given many options – many roads to travel as we seek a better way – but His narrow road is the only way to true life…the only road to peace and true contentment.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Many try to achieve happiness by striving after their own desires. The result? Tired, unsatisfied people. True contentment happens only when we walk closely with Jesus. He shows where we can humble ourselves and take care of others.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The keys to contentment at any stage of life are knowing who you are in Christ and trusting God with every aspect of your life. Are you contented??

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The weakness of the Church is due in large part to the failure of Christians to be content with what God gives them. Remember that contentment is not having what you want; it is wanting only what you have. The point is that we must be content to take only what God gives us.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Do you sincerely want to be a contented Christian? Then set you mind and your heart upon God’s unending love and His grace. Seek first the salvation that is available through a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, and then claim the joy, the contentment and the spiritual abundance that the Shepherd offers His sheep!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Jealousy is a destructive attitude that poisons the way you view life. Jealousy is an abomination in the life of a Christian. Jealousy is self-centeredness at its worst. Jealousy robs us of joy and chokes out contentment. Jealousy hardens the heart and stifles gratitude. Jealousy assumes that God’s resources are too limited for Him to bless another and still bless us. Watch over your heart! If you find yourself unable to rejoice in the success of others, beware! Do not let jealousy taint your heart. Repent before it robs you of any more of the joy and contentment God desires for you. When you are tempted to compare your success in life to that of another, ask God to remind you of all the ways He has blessed you undeservedly.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Jesus never called us to live a life of comfort.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

19. 19. COMPASSION,COMPASSION,COMPASSION,COMPASSION,COMPASSION,

If our hearts are full of fear, doubt, unbelief, negativity, bitterness, unforgiveness, envy, pride, lust or greed, then those traits will characterize our lives as well. Conversely, if we choose to fill our hearts with love, joy, peace, hope, kindness, faith, courage, grace, compassion and purpose, then those traits will determine our life’s story. The good news is that we get to choose. What will be your choice for your life?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When I feel the need for compassion and understanding, I shall remind myself Jesus is not far off. When I feel the need for compassion and understanding, I shall remind myself Jesus is living and alive within my heart. When I feel the need for compassion and understanding, I shall remind myself Jesus is pouring His compassion over me every second. When I feel the need for compassion and understanding, I shall share with others what Jesus has given me. When I see others who need compassion and understanding, I shall give them compassion and understanding in Christ’s name.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Jesus gives us His love so we can give it away in the same unselfish, compassionate, unconditional way He gave it to us. He tells us this kind of love will be our trade mark. It will distinguish us as followers of Jesus.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Stress is in all of our lives. There is pressure from all sides. Relationships, finances, health, how do we get any relief? Where can we go to get help? Paul wrote, “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles.” When we are comforted by His grace and mercy, God wants us to go and comfort others that He brings our way. We are to comfort others in the same way we were helped. God has commanded us to take His love to the streets. That is what He did. Today, bring your own burdens to the Lord. Let Him comfort you. And when He does, go with the same compassion He had and go comfort someone else.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Let’s be God’s ministers of love — His understanding, compassionate, giving, love. Someone you know needs a measure of encouragement and love — be the one to give it!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Let’s ask God to help us see others as He does. When we look at people through our own eyes, we can be insensitive, prejudiced, and harshly judgmental. We need to ask God for a heart of mercy and compassion—the kind of heart God has for each of us. When we do, we will see people through His eyes of mercy.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Our compassionate God doesn’t neglect others to respond to our concerns. He has limitless time and love for each of His children. No need is too trivial for Him.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Sometimes we face struggles in life, and we are tempted to think that God has forgotten us. We may even believe that God no longer loves us. But God’s love for us is as expansive as the open arms of Christ on the cross. And the tender compassion of our heavenly Father is more dependable and more enduring than the love of a nursing mother for her infant. Be comforted—His love never fails.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Who can know the depth and intensity of the heart of God? We can begin to understand what is on the heart of God only when He shares His heart with us. You can choose to be alert to the heart of God. As you seek to understand what God is feeling, He may share with you the intensity of His heart. When you are around other people, God may sensitize you to the love He feels for them. When you see others suffering, you may feel the compassion Jesus feels. When sinners return to God in repentance, you may share the Father’s joy. You will react to evil the way Jesus reacts. If you will remain alert in prayer, Jesus will share His heart with you.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

20. 20. Envy,Envy,Envy,Envy,Envy,Envy,Envy,Envy,Envy,Envy,Envy,

When you are a new believer, you will not always know how to relate to others in a spiritually mature way. You may battle with envy, anger, or unforgiveness. But the longer you walk with Christ, the more you should relate to others as He does. It is helpful for you to measure the progress in your spiritual life from time to time. A good way to evaluate your spiritual growth is to ask mature Christians around you if your actions reveal spiritual maturity.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Sometimes we look at the “top of our weeds”, thinking that they aren’t so bad. And.. we let them grow. But, what we MUST do is locate the ROOT and pull it out! Get rid of the root of sin. The root of bitterness. The root of envy. The root of unforgiveness. The root of complaining. The root of jealousy.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
There are no truly great men or women, only a great God who enables some to be effective leaders and outstanding benefactors of mankind. Realizing this will help us to overcome envy when others are highly praised, and it will keep us from becoming proud if someone tells us how great we are. Only God is truly great and worthy of praise.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Instead of being regretful, we need to be grateful. Instead of complaining, we need to remember that everything is a gift from God. Envy always asks, “Why them?” Gratitude says, “Why me?” Envy is based on the myth that you must have more in order to be happier. It’s just not true. Happiness is a choice. If you’re not happy now, you’re not going to be happy with more. Maturity is learning to be content when things are not going your way. It’s better to be satisfied with what you have than to always want something more. Instead, learn to be grateful for who you are and what you have. Everything you have is a gracious gift from God!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If our hearts are full of fear, doubt, unbelief, negativity, bitterness, unforgiveness, envy, pride, lust or greed, then those traits will characterize our lives as well. Conversely, if we choose to fill our hearts with love, joy, peace, hope, kindness, faith, courage, grace, compassion and purpose, then those traits will determine our life’s story. The good news is that we get to choose. What will be your choice for your life?
The number one thing that holds you back from God’s purpose and mission for your life is a very subtle sin. It’s not lust or pride or anger. It’s not worry or fear or discouragement. In fact, you would probably never even think of it because it is so insidious we don’t realize its damaging effect on our lives.
It’s envy. When you envy other people, you are so fixated on what you don’t have and what you are not that you totally miss God’s plan for you.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

21. 21. Forgiveness,Forgiveness,Forgiveness,Forgiveness,Forgiveness,Forgiveness,

If our hearts are full of fear, doubt, unbelief, negativity, bitterness, unforgiveness, envy, pride, lust or greed, then those traits will characterize our lives as well. Conversely, if we choose to fill our hearts with love, joy, peace, hope, kindness, faith, courage, grace, compassion and purpose, then those traits will determine our life’s story. The good news is that we get to choose. What will be your choice for your life?

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We are never told in the Bible that we need to be saved from higher taxes, poor paying jobs, small apartments, or even national debt. What we truly need to be saved from is our perverse hearts that have no desire for the one true Savior, Jesus. This Savior meets our need for forgiveness of sins and hope for the future. A future that is eternal, and will continue forever. Look to the One who can save you for all time, instead of a short-lived term.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God wants us to be prisoners of hope, and the stronghold we are to run to is Jesus! Our hope needs to remain in the fact that Jesus Christ came from Heaven to Earth, died on a cross and rose again from the dead so that every single person, regardless of how they started in life, can have forgiveness for their past, a brand-new start and a hope for the future.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Never mind the person or people who cause you pain and anger….Because it is through your experiences with them that your spirit has grown a step higher from the lessons of tolerance and forgiveness.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Forgiveness is an act of the will more than an act of the heart. A resentful spirit grows into a terrible burden. The Lord knows that forgiveness is best, even when it is difficult. A bitter and resentful spirit doesn’t fit who we are in Christ. Nor is it healthy to carry an angry attitude through life. That’s why Scripture emphasizes the need to forgive. Choose to be liberated from your burden–Jesus promised to make us free when we release our sins to Him

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Our ability to forgive is a clear test of faith. One of the ways we see Christ’s grace at work in our lives is through the forgiveness we extend to others. We demonstrate that we are God’s children when we forgive like the Father.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The scripture is clear. You can see true “God love” displayed in patience, kindness, humility, forgiveness, integrity, and ongoing perseverance. This kind of love survives and stands the tests of time and tribulations.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Is there something in your life for which you feel guilty? You don’t need to. Simply accept God’s love and forgiveness.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

It is inevitable in a fallen world that offenses will come. Each time they do we face a choice to nurse un-forgiveness and bitterness or receive the offense as an opportunity to grow in God.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

There is no clearer demonstration of a transformed heart and true love for Christ than when we forgive one another. Pride keeps more people separated from God and more relationships locked in unforgiveness than any other sin. True forgiveness of others brings us back to the cross where we must confess the ugliness of our heart, acknowledge our need for His forgiveness, and, once again, remove ourselves from the throne of control.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

For all who have not yet trusted Jesus for forgiveness, the time to do so is now. It is urgent.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Do you need to forgive someone for hurting you? Then obey God’s Word, and extend forgiveness. Do it today!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Forgiven people ought to be forgiving people.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Many of us attempt to “run injured” in our spiritual lives. We are carrying emotional and spiritual injuries from our pasts – unforgiveness, hurt, guilt, anger, shame, bitterness, pain, abuse, injustice – that we have not addressed. We can never move on if we refuse to admit we are wounded. Allow Him to go into those broken places in your soul and mend them so you can run your race and do all that God has called you to do!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We often find ourselves carrying so many needless weights and burdens through life. Jealously, comparison, anger, worry, anxiety, insecurity, bitterness, sadness, unforgiveness – do any of these sound familiar to you? Take regular inventory of every area of your life. What weights are you carrying that could be dragging you down? Let Jesus free you of those burdens. You don’t have time to carry them!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The forgiveness we do not give, the forgiveness we withhold— will hold us back in our relationship with the Lord and the plans He has for us. Unforgiveness will become a stumbling block in our walk with the Lord and with others. It doesn’t matter if the person receives it, and it doesn’t matter if the person does or does not acknowledge wrong doing. Forgiveness is about our heart letting go instead of staying in bondage to that circumstance. Forgiveness isn’t about changing the offender. It is about a change in us.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Are you struggling with condemnation? It can weigh you down, depress you, fill you with fear, and keep you from doing what God has called you to do. God wants us to repent and seek forgiveness. He wants us to try to make things right with others when that is possible. And then He wants us to move on. To learn from our mistakes, but not to dwell on them. He wants us to see ourselves through His eyes–forgiven and righteous.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We live in a world full of people who are hurting and in need of a revelation of God’s love, grace and forgiveness. And your kind words, your smile, your help, could make all the difference for a person on the verge of giving up. Remember, it is no accident God has placed you where you are today. You can make a difference!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Forgiveness means remembering — and learning from the memory — without demanding repayment or retribution. Unforgiveness is a form of punishment: it’s payback time. Holding a grudge to protect ourselves from getting hurt again never works either. Grudges do not free us from the pain of bad memories. It chains us to them. When we free others from the debts they owe us for hurting us (whether they seek it or not, whether they’re still alive or not), we free ourselves and our healing begins — OUR healing!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Are you haunted by the memory of some cowardly, selfish, or shameful acts? Jesus took the lashes for all our sins. Now He invites us to accept His forgiveness and devote the rest of our lives to Him. He wants us to know the greatness of His Father’s love. That’s why He died!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Forgiveness can be tough. Especially when someone has hurt us deeply or has maliciously abused us. How is it possible to forgive someone who has been so cruel? If we have not forgiven someone who has hurt us, remember that real healing cannot take place until we let go of all bitterness and unforgiveness. Forgiveness is a process that may require considerable time and much prayer.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you’ve been struggling with a mountain of fear, anxiety, depression, un-forgiveness, anger, defeat, condemnation, despair … it’s time to step into the freedom Jesus Christ died to give you. Don’t live paralyzed in a place that should only have been a pit stop.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

None of us are perfect. But we need to ask God to help us not only teach our children His ways, but to live them. When we fail, we need to admit our mistakes to God–and to our loved ones–and move on. Being willing to humble ourselves and ask forgiveness is a valuable hand-me-down to our children and grandchildren

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Forgiveness! Where would we be without forgiveness? Without forgiving and being forgiven? If we lay hold of eternal rather than earthly things, we can more easily forgive when someone robs us of earthly things. Forgive and accept forgiveness.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Forgiveness is like a coin with two sides: the forgiveness each of us needs from God, and the forgiveness we owe to other human beings. They are inseparable. One coin. Unless we forgive we let bitterness control us. Bitterness is like a plug between me and God; between me and another person. Unless I pull the plug, His forgiveness and love cannot flow. Yes, life is unfair, but let God handle the unfairness. He’s a God of justice and He’ll look after the unfairness in due time. Forgiveness is a decision we make not based on feeling.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We will all be hurt in this life. Many times we’ll be hurt intentionally by what people say about us or what people do to us. In fact, any time we read the word “forgiveness” we instantly call to mind certain heartaches, hurts, and problems from our past. The memories are still fresh because we’ve been hurt very deeply. Remember this: No matter what anyone does to you, you’ll never have to forgive any other person more than God has already forgiven you.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When it comes to forgiveness, God doesn’t play favorites and neither should we. We should forgive all the people who have harmed us (not just the people who have asked for forgiveness or the ones who have made restitution). Complete forgiveness is God’s way, and it should be our way too. Anything less is not enough!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Forgiving yourself at times can be the hardest thing to do. We walk around feeling horrible, bad and weary for our mistakes. Beating yourself up about what happened days, weeks, months or even years ago? As much as we would like to, we cannot go in the past and correct those mistakes. However, we can make a decision to learn from them and start forgiving ourselves. No matter what you’ve done (big or small), know that when Jesus died on the cross for you- your sins, mistakes, weaknesses and addictions went on the cross too. God already knew before the foundations of the world what your mistakes and downfalls would be, so He took it to the cross with Him 2,000 years ago. No matter what your story is: rape, murder, theft, lying, cheating, adultery, addictions, etc; when you repented and asked for forgiveness the first time, God forgave you. He now wants you to start forgiving yourself. Forgiving yourself is a decision and a daily task; even if you were to mess up right now, know that God’s grace is sufficient. He will wash away all sins, cleansing you and making you a new creature all over again.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When we accept forgiveness from God, we lose our desire to withhold it from others. And when we live in peace with God, we are eager to make peace with others.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

God takes great joy in offering forgiveness to every person. He gives no thought to how we might “measure up”; He’s only interested in our response. Have you accepted His invitation to join in a relationship with Him that will change your life and last for all eternity? He’s calling your name today.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

No matter who we are or what we’ve done, we need forgiveness. The great news is that regardless of whether our past is cause for relief or regret, God met our need for cleansing through His Son Jesus. Now He asks only that we acknowledge our need and accept His gift of love.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

“There is no way God could ever forgive me for the sins I’ve committed.” These words are often spoken by people whose pasts are riddled with crime, violence, deceit, and transgressions of all description. Unable to forgive themselves, they cannot comprehend how a holy God could offer forgiveness. The good news is there is no sin so great that it is beyond the reach of God’s grace. No matter what you have done, no matter how far you have strayed from God’s standards, forgiveness is available to you. Receive that promise today and accept God’s forgiveness.
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Receiving God’s forgiveness isn’t a complicated process; it’s probably less complicated, in fact, than making things right with people. Admitting we have sinned opens the way to God’s forgiveness. Not only are we forgiven, but we are made righteous and pure before Him. He no longer sees the stain of sin. So, if you’ve messed up, take a moment to honestly and sincerely confess your sin, and open the way to God’s great forgiveness.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Forgiving is really hard sometimes. There are times, in fact, when it might be all but humanly impossible. Offenses that violate us emotionally, spiritually, or physically can rock us to the core, and the words, “I forgive you,” may be the furthest thing from our minds. If someone in your life has deeply offended you, seek God’s help to come to a place of forgiveness. You might be amazed at the tremendous freedom you’ll experience.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

22. 22. Grumbling,Grumbling,Grumbling,Grumbling,Grumbling,Grumbling,Grumbling,

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
Sometimes discontentment can motivate positive, godly change in our lives. Discontentment can be the warning sign that we need to make changes in our walk with God–and that can lead to contentment. When we are contented in life, we can face whatever roadblocks and detours we find. Instead of grumbling about our circumstances, we can look for the opportunities to trust God in new ways and bring glory to Him. We can use our valleys to remind us that only God can fill the emptiness in our lives.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Turn grumbling into thankfulness. Do you have a habit of grumbling and complaining? God was not pleased when the Israelites grumbled, and He is not pleased when His children grumble today. When you catch yourself grumbling, stop! Pause with what you’re doing until you think of a reason to thank God for the very thing that made you complain.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

23, 23. Suffering,Suffering,Suffering,Suffering,Suffering,Suffering,

We’re not exempt from the punches that life throws at us nor from the storms that inevitably threaten our stability. If there is a storm brewing on your horizon and you want to be sure you are equipped and ready for it when it arrives, bring that need to Jesus. Not until we have reached the limits of our own capacity do we find it absolutely necessary to cast ourselves on God. God uses our suffering and adversity to take us beyond our own capacities, so that we will turn to Him for strength and survival. Thus, it is His power which sustains us, and it is He who must receive the praise and glory. God does not leave us with a full tank of gas, but with a tank virtually empty. As the gauge reads “empty” and the red warning light begins to flash, we must seek reserves which are not our own.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We bear the sins of others when we forgive them, regardless of what their sin costs us. We bear the sins of others when we’re willing to pick them up and carry them home, even if it means we will have to sacrifice for helping them. We pay a cost when we help others find freedom in Christ. Bearing the sins of others, even when it means suffering and rejection, is one of the ways we become like Christ. The truth is, as we follow Jesus down the narrow path, he will lovingly and ruthlessly place us on the anvil of his grace and then hammer us into the shape of Christ.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Why must God´s children suffer? We don´t know. What we do know is that God was willing to suffer for us. He asks nothing of us that He was not willing to do for us.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Sometimes God will use us to give a Biblical answer to the suffering a person is enduring, but there will still be instances when we have no idea what to say. Instead of spouting off religiously oriented phrases in these situations, we should listen, listen, and listen some more. In other words lend an ear to the hurting, instead of trying to solve all of their problems.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

When we’re in the middle of suffering or when doubts start threatening our faith, what are our anchors? Although our faith may feel weak, if it’s anchored in God’s promises and presence, He will safely hold us.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

There are a lot of people today, maybe you, who are carrying heavy burdens. Some of those burdens are so heavy and overwhelming that many are about to collapse under their crushing weight. Many times, the seemingly overwhelming burden of responsibility is enough to cause many of us to want to run away from our problems and just disappear. Jesus did not promise us a life free from pain and suffering and troubles. He did promise however, that He would be there beside us as we traveled that long and difficult road filled with trials and burdens. The life of a Christian is not always easy, but we believe that we are traveling on a path that will make not only our faith but us stronger. We are being refined and purified through the many trials and burdens of life. When you feel those moments coming on remind yourself to cast all of your anxieties upon the Lord, because He cares for you.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Suffering is absolutely necessary to Christian maturity. You will never grow up, you will never be what God wants you to be, without some form of suffering.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We are not alone in our experience of pain. God Himself took on human form and suffered greatly. The next time you are going through a period of suffering remember The One with nail-scarred hands is near. He will comfort us and teach us in our suffering.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We’re not exempt from the punches that life throws at us nor from the storms that inevitably threaten our stability. Join the many travelers through life who through deep waters of pain and suffering embrace with unshakable confidence the truth that God’s grace is sufficient and that in our weakness He is made strong .
>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Jesus promises that we will suffer. Despite being assured of affliction and suffering, Christ-followers can be joyful nonetheless. We can be joyful not by creating a bubbly-faced facade of happiness to hide reality but rather by confidently knowing that, in the face of immense sin and suffering, we are secure in Christ. Thus, despite the fact that suffering will come even—or, perhaps, especially—to us who profess faith in Christ, we can have great joy not because we are spared affliction but because we are completely satisfied in Christ.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

But how to be a present to another? Our hearts are so hard. We are so insensitive to the suffering of others. We must pray the Holy Spirit to change our hearts of stone into hearts of flesh so that we may give life, for love is giving of life and liberty. Jean Vanier

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

We will carry the pain of the ones we love when they are going through their own suffering in their lives. And we will feel helpless when we have to watch them go through their own life lessons and trials. But all we can do is pray and know that God will bring them healing and peace, and instill in us the right words to say or just the right thing to do to comfort them.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

If you become bitter over your hardships, you close some parts of your life from God. If you do this, you will never be complete. Don’t resent the suffering God allows in your life. Don’t make all your decisions and invest everything you have into avoiding hardship. God did not spare His own Son. How can we expect Him to spare us? Learn obedience even when it hurts!

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Your “cross” is God’s will for you, regardless of the cost. Taking up your cross is a choice; it is not beyond your control. Neither circumstances you face nor consequences of your own actions are your cross. Your cross will be to voluntarily participate in Christ’s sufferings as He carries out His redemptive purposes. There is no Christianity without a cross. If you are waiting for a relationship with God that never requires suffering or inconvenience, then you cannot use Christ as your model. God’s will for you involves a cross. First, take up your cross, then you can follow

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

The moment you became a Christian, your sinful nature died, but there remained sinful aspects of your character that had not gone to their graves willingly. If these sinful attitudes are allowed to remain alive, they will stifle the fruits of the Spirit. Your temper may prevent some from coming to Jesus. Your selfishness will hinder you from being a blessing to those around you. Your ambition could cause you to use others to meet your goals. Your family may be suffering because of some areas of your life that you have never allowed Jesus to put to death. Allow God to complete His work in you and see what fruit your life produces.

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

Number of visitors

wordpress counter