I Have Decided

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This morning, let’s go ahead and make it clear. Let’s make the choice. We will not give ear to the enemy. We will not allow doubt or fear, accusation or the threat of insufficiency dwell in our minds. We will not allow deception to divide our hearts. We will not passively listen as the enemy tries to divert us from our purpose and God’s promises for us.

We are not helpless, for the Helper has come and lives within us. We are not defeated, because Christ has overcome sin, death, and darkness. We live-move-breathe in FREEDOM because of the cross. We are not barely making it, sure to fail, or only slightly acceptable in the eyes of God. We are REDEEMED. We are wearing HIS righteousness. We are LOVED. Not only can we come boldly into the throne-room of God…He has made His home within us!

We have the strength of God Almighty upholding us today. We aren’t going to be perfect, but HE is and His grace is sufficient in our weakness. We are not defenseless, because He has given us His word and His Spirit. “The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have the power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:4-5)

So we know who we are – sons and daughters of God. We know who He is – good, perfect in all His ways, mighty. We know His promises – all things new, all things working together for our good, all things complete in Him. We know what we have been given – His own power, His authority, His presence…

Knowing all of that, it is up to us to make the decision.

We can open our ears to the enemy and let him tell us everything we don’t have, what we are not, and how we don’t have enough to offer….OR we will use the weapons we have been given – faith, truth, the very Words of God – to cut his lies off from our hearts.

Let’s stand up and walk forward today in our rightful inheritance of peace and joy, secure with our Father going before us, knowing that offering ourselves to Him is enough. Let’s put aside the things that trip is up and put our confidence in Him. Let’s love and live to bring Him glory.

Decide here and now with me– we will NOT allow the lies of the deceiver to take up residence in our minds today.

God ALONE reigns in this home, this life, this heart.

You Are

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Today, I just want to simply say yes.

Yes, I believe You are exactly who You say You are: able and willing to be present in our lives. I believe You are good and full of mercy. I believe You are compassionate and strong. I believe You fight for us. I believe that when we ask You for help, believing, things change. Because of Your love for us, You are HERE – Your Spirit is intimately involved in our lives.

Yes, You are the God who performs miracles…now, today, here in my life.

Help my eyes to stay open to see Your hand at work.

the One who sustains

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This is a lesson God has been teaching me for a long time now, one I need to re-learn from time to time: the expectations or approval of people, the labels of ‘success’, the fluctuating waves of my own emotion and opinion…none of these things are where I can find true motivation or real purpose.

Trying to meet the standards of others (for me, that ‘other’ is usually my own self) is draining and leaves me weary. It fills me up with doubt and fear, leaving me vulnerable to defining my value by other people and their lives.

But comparison, inferiority, and insecurity lose their grip on my heart when my sights are set on honoring Him alone. When life becomes about living as the person He created me to be, His words (not mine, not the enemy’s, not anyone else’s) define my worth. His promises inspire and comfort me. His delight in my response to Him becomes more than enough to satisfy my heart.

It is life-infusing and heart-restoring to surrender to Him. He expects no more and no less than my everything…and the pleasure of His Father’s heart when I offer back to Him all He has given to me is the source of strength and perseverance, confidence and peace.

This is what has the power to sustain my soul: His joy in my obedience, His always-abiding presence. This is the grace that upholds my heart, the truth that brings contentment: I am known, fully, and wholly loved.

 

Renew In Me

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You chose us, even before the foundation of this world was laid. Your love doesn’t come and go. It doesn’t change. Your compassionate heart is faithful toward us. Your purpose for us is unshakeable.

You are steadfast. Firm and unwavering.

How I want those words to describe my faith, my love, my heart.

I want my heart to be undivided, wholly Yours.

Let no distraction turn my eyes from You. Let it be Your approval that I am after, unswayed by anyone else’s opinions of me. Let my own desires be re-shaped until I can say to live is Christ, to die is gain. Let my ambitions be wholly displaced by a life lived for Your glory. Let every sin that tries to trip me up be cast aside, every thought put under obedience to You. Let every doubt be replaced with trust. Let my ears be closed to fear and open only to Your voice.

Every time, Lord, and in everything–I want to say: I choose You.

forgiven

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He holds nothing against us. He does not condemn us. He is not disappointed in us.

We are forgiven.

That means sin removed from us as far as the east is from the west. It means past sins remembered no more. Forgiven means covered with the righteousness of Jesus.

Forgiven is mercy wrapping us in His unfailing love. Forgiveness is the soul made new, His Spirit within us. The Father speaks – “forgiven” – and it means freedom.

For just a moment, forget how many times you’ve heard it…and listen with your heart that is beloved and made holy. Listen with your soul that owes no debt and is not bound by shame. Listen with all of who you are…a daughter or a son of the Mighty King, one who belongs to this family He has created. Chosen and cherished, pursued and redeemed by the sacrifice of Jesus. That is who you are.

Forgiven.

It’s one of the most beautiful words I know.

“I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord.’ And You forgave the guilt of my sin.” -Psalm 32:5

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”-2 Cor. 5:17

the One who loves

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If you need someplace steady to stand…if you need a love to lean on…if you need arms that are always welcoming…if you need to know that eyes of love really see & really know you…if you need to know that your future is not determined by your past failures but by a Father full of grace–call out to Him. Those who seek will find, those who knock will be answered…and so God will be there for you. He IS there, already, waiting for you to find your hope and rest in Him.

How We Overcome

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I am so thankful that when it comes to our battles — battles in which we don’t wrestle with flesh and blood, but with the spiritual enemies at work in this world — we do not stand alone. It isn’t our strength we have to rely upon, but God’s. It isn’t our abilities or the material things that we have that bring our victory — it is the power of Jesus Christ and the Spirit of God within us that enables us to stand our ground.

So don’t give an inch. If you are in the middle of a battle, put on the armor God has provided — armor infused with His might — and put your eyes on Him. Open your mouth and do the last thing the enemy might expect in the heat of a hard moment — speak praise.

Because we have already been made more than conquerors through Him who loves us.

Do not give up on what you know God has called you to do. Don’t be intimidated, don’t be silenced, and don’t be afraid. Greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world.

Keep going, friends. Sometimes the fight is loud and earth-shaking, sometimes the night is long, sometimes it is plain hard to stand firm. But with His love around us, with His Spirit empowering us…we can be confident that He is our defender and victory. He is our help and our shield.

When the battle is fierce, Lord, help our faith to grow fervent.

When we are fighting the darkness, let us see by the light of Your face.

“Through You we push back our enemies; through Your name we trample our foes. I put no trust in my bow, my sword does not bring me victory; but You give us victory over our enemies, You put our adversaries to shame. In God we make our boast all day long, and we will praise Your name forever.”-Psalm 44:5-8