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I Can

Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” People often mistake this passag eto mean that for everything we want to have or to do,if we just ask Jesus for it, then it becomes ours for the taking. No. I don’t believe that. The fact is, the “all things” in this versemeans all things that God has assigned us to do, with the help of Jesus Christ living in our lives and being our Lord and Master. That’s what this verse is assuring us that we can do.And when we do what God has made us to do, we are strengthened for it in our body, soul, and spirit. So…I can do all things that God made me to do, that God tells me to do, that God enables me to do—because I know Him [ … ]

Your Shepherd

The LORD is my shepherd, I
   shall not be in want.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
   he leads me beside quiet waters,
   he restores my soul.
He guides me in paths of righteousness
   for his name’s sake.
Even though I walk
   through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil,
   for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
   they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me
   in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
   my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and love will follow me
   all the days of [ … ]

An Eternally Faithful Friend through the Good and the Bad

Church father and theologian John Calvin noted that the psalms provide
an “anatomy of all parts of the soul,” because every emotion in the
human continuum is expressed somewhere in these divine tunes. The
various writers depict God to be a forever friend who doesn’t ask His children
to hide their “ugly” emotions. His delight in you can be felt in both
grinning-from-ear-to-ear moments and drab days when you feel like life
has punched you in the gut. Regardless of how well or poorly we perform,
He is with us. No matter how happy or sad we feel, our heavenly Father
won’t walk away. Our Creator-Redeemer is always in our corner; He is
absolutely and eternally for us.

Excerpted from A Perfect Mess by Lisa Harper

Daily Reflection: How has [ … ]

Desiring God Daily

What is the most worthwhile thing humankind can experience on earth? Nothing less than God Himself! As glorious as God is, so is the glory that begins to work in the hearts and lives of those who give themselves to live for God. It is a great step forward in the life of a Christian when he or she truly sees this and regards their daily fellowship with God as the most important aspect of their existence. Take time and ask yourself whether this is indeed not the most important thing around which your life should revolve—to know God and to love Him with your whole heart. This is what God desires above all else; and it is that which, in answer to your prayer, He will enable you to do. So begin this and every day of the year [ … ]

The Beauty Beyond the Past

Through His magnificent grace, God can take the good, the bad, and the ugly experiences in your life and use them to make you unbelievably better at what He’s created you for, whatever that might be! …He can take the good things that we remember most fondly, the bad things we might like to forget, and the ugly things that have shaped us into people we didn’t start out to be and use all of them to facilitate His individual purpose for each and every one of us.

Including you.

As Job said of God: “I know that You can do all things, and that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted”(42:2). God is able to take and make whatever He wills. He can take whatever and whoever you are and make you into whatever and whoever you need to [ … ]

God Will Guide You

The busyness of today can shape our tomorrows. For better or worse, who and what I yield to today will affect who I become. We can’t accept every opportunity that comes our way, and we can’t always know which opportunity is the best to pursue or which doors we should walk through and which ones we shouldn’t.

Over the years I’ve discovered that I’m quite gullible, especially when it comes to bargains or a great sales pitch. Yet at the same time, I trust very few people, particularly when my children or grandchildren are involved.

Knowing I can trust God in any circumstance is a great help. He will guide me in the right direction, through the right doors, if I only will ask…and then listen for His answer.

Excerpted from Plain Wisdom by Cindy Woodsmall

Daily Reflection: How [ … ]

God’s Glory

O how we need to see that Christ, not comfort, is our all-satisfying and everlasting treasure. So I conclude that magnifying the supremacy of God in all things and being willing to suffer patiently to help people see and savor this supremacy is the essence of love. It’s the essence of God’s love. And it’s the essence of our love for people. Because the supremacy of God’s glory is the source and sum of all full and lasting joy.

Excerpted from A Godward Heart by John Piper

Daily Reflection: When was the last time you savored the supremacy of God?

The Real Jesus

We all know who Jesus is. Right?

We preach and teach about His will and His ways; tell His stories by heart; celebrate Him in worship; and serve Him with enthusiasm. Yet underneath it all (if we are truly candid), there is a gnawing sense that there should be something…well, more to this relationship.

Why is it that He often feels so far away? The distance between knowing Him and knowing about Him is vast. And the space between these two experiences separates the spectators from intimate participants.

Jesus intends for you to experience the pleasure and reassuring peace of His presence at the core of your life. He wants to be more than just another volume in your encyclopedia of biblical facts. He didn’t die for you to simply strike a deal guaranteeing heaven. He died for you to [ … ]

God’s Story

While most of my [Randy Alcorn] books are nonfiction, I’ve written seven full-length novels. Now, if I were to write a novel about lives without conflict, where characters get everything they want, where life marches on comfortably and no one ever loses anything, nobody would read it. Who likes a boring story? In fact, my central characters always face great conflict, turmoil, uncertainty, and suffering. Some die. That it makes for a far better story is my main reason for doing this. (We enjoy in fiction much that we do not enjoy in life.) So who am I to say that God shouldn’t write such things into his story, including my part?

In our lives God uses conflict not just to make the story better but to make us better. In life, not just literature, we repeatedly see that protection [ … ]