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“I am weary with my moaning; every night I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping.” Psalm 6:6

People who face painful trials and trouble in their lives can feel defeated as they experience the sorrow of weariness. In Scripture, King David wrote Psalm 6 crying out to God, “My soul  also is greatly troubled. But you, O LORD – how long?”.

I believe most of us have asked God the same question. As time grows short it is obvious that the devil has stepped up his attacks on believers.  Popular revivalist, Vance Havner, once wrote that added trouble by the enemy is  “evidence that we are making progress and have aroused him”. He adds that in our discouragement, “A sense of things present will come doubly strong and heaven will seem far away“.  We will feel more like sighing than shouting.

The truth is that if you don’t have faith in the darkness of trouble, then it is not enough for the light of good times. Our faith is proved to be genuine only when it is tested! We all grow weary in the battles of this life. It may even appear that the evil is overcoming the world.  We are not in a losing battle. Our victory is guaranteed! The devil already knows that we have been declared conquerors. Once you fully understand that God’s plan was put in place long before he formed the world, you can have peace knowing that he has prepared a way to take you through every bondage and get you to where he wants you to be.

In Scripture, King David had many enemies who attacked him and yet his trust was in his God. In Psalm 31:14-15  he cries out,“But I trust in you, O LORD; I say, ‘You are my God’. My times are in your hand.”  David’s strength came from the fact that he understood that his battles were being fought and won by God’s power. He knew he wasn’t alone. That truth kept him in perfect peace.

The world is growing in rebellion to the ways of God. Do not fear the coming darkness. We are told in Matthew 24:12, “Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold”. Sin is rampant and you need only watch the news to see a new form of iniquity abounding each day.  Truth has been replaced by a lie as evil is called good and good evil. The persecution of Christians is surging all over the world. Even in America, Christianity is being marginalized and laws are being made to punish those who believe the Bible is God’s word.

Betsie Ten Boom and her family were put in death camps for hiding Jews in their home during the Nazi occupation in Holland. In that place of misery she never doubted God. She said to her sister, Corrie, “There are no ‘ifs” in God’s world. And no places are safer than other places. The center of His will is our only safety.” Betsie took God at his word.

My friends, nothing can ever separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus. We are covered for each and every pain and struggle that we face. When things seem like they are not working out and that your prayers are not being answered I implore you to put your faith to the test. Let the hope of God fill your heart He has not allowed anything to happen in your life that will not fulfill his purpose for your good.

It may not seem like it right now but one day it will be the unshakable hope that fills your heart. You will know that you were never forsaken and that each petition and every tear were before the throne of God and answered in his perfect way. His mercy was always with you. You need to understand that the will of God for your life is good. He is preparing you for the royalty of an eternal Kingdom.  In I Cor. 2:9, we are promised, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him.”

If your struggle is lasting longer than you feel you can bear, please take heart and seek God out in his word. It is there that you will find the peace you need to hold on. You will see that even when God appears silent, he is actually preparing your heart for his perfect answer. The wait has a purpose and is part of the plan. Don’t give up.

 

Looking at horizon

But thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Cor.15:57)

It is easy to lose hope when your troubles surround you. Uncertainty and doubt can fill you with fear especially when there seems to be no way out of your pain.

Jesus told us in his world that we would have many troubles here on earth. He knew the times and what was to come.  However, Jesus also wanted us to know that despite our problems, we can stand firm knowing that he has overcome the world. He is the Hope of all things impossible. He is the restorer of dreams and the power to overcome. There is nothing that can crush a true believer because all the force of heaven lives in the heart of those who belong to Christ. A royal army stands ready to fight for you.

Jesus is the strength to overcome all that comes against you so it is sad to watch as people turn instead to substance abuse to silence their pain.  Many good people have sold out their future to alcohol or drugs. They becomes bonded to the poison that is destroying their lives and that of their families. It can happen to anyone. Some of the nicest people are secretly coping with an addiction.  They feel lost and out of control because they are trying to carry this burden on their own. That will never bring victory because Jesus never meant for anyone to fight their battles alone.

We are told in 1 Corinthians 10:13 that, “No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful;” he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.”

The truth in this verse is that we are all weak in our flesh but we have hope through Christ. He will provide the way out so that you cannot be destroyed by your struggle. He is always the strength you need to overcome.  We are told in Scripture that God’s power is manifested through our weakness. We have been made victors over all of our battles when our trust is in Christ.  He is the only power you need to conquer all that comes against you. He will not fail to take you through your pain and bring peace in your life.  Nothing is impossible through the One who paid the price to give you an abundant life through every storm.

In Isaiah 26:3 we read. “You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you because he trust in you”.  Your weakness cannot stop your future.  There is no impossible situation that can stop his purpose for your life. Jesus gives you victory over all of the obstacles that stand in your way. He has given you life and he will take you to the end of your life according to his perfect plan.

No matter what troubles or addictions that you face in this life, remember that Jesus has indeed overcome the world and all of its struggles. Put your complete trust in him. By surrendering your weakness to the power of Christ, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain!

My dear friends, I understand that you are facing many painful trials in this life. We all are. Take hope for Jesus has overcome the troubles of this world.. While we are waiting on him to meet us in our struggle, he is working out a deliberate, divine, eternal plan for your life. You are not forgotten nor are you ever without hope. Have faith and stay in peace knowing that in the eternal plan, it is already worked out. Cease striving and rest. Your God will not fail you. 

light through the tunnel

Of what value is faith that has not been tested?

It is not always possible to see the light at the end of the tunnel when the darkness of your troubles overwhelms you.  How quickly your dreams and hopes can slip away when an impossible situation sends a crushing blow.  Will you ever recover? Tough times bring forth tested faith.  It is easier to see God in the brightness of day than it is to trust him in the darkness of night.

You are not going to understand why God allows storms and heartache in your life but that should not make you doubt his love.  During those times when you are stopped by the furnace of affliction, the sea of trouble and the mountain of despair, remember that it is not a holding place but a resting place.  God is keeping you near to his heart and revealing more of himself to you. Only there can you understand that at the end of your weakness is his limitless strength.

In Scripture, we read about the life and struggles of David.   Although he was anointed by God to be King, David first had to fight against those who were trying to kill him.  For years he was forced to wander throughout the desert and seek shelter in caves.  That time of struggle brought David to the understanding that his future was ordained by God and no one could stop him from accomplishing what he started.  David wrote in Psalm 28:7,  “The LORD is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped.”  In the midst of David’s troubles was a faithful God providing all that he needed for victory.  The same is true for us today.

God’s plans sometimes work in mysterious ways. A friend and I went to visit a death row inmate this past week whose execution date is set for next month.  He told us that he had become a believer shortly after he got to prison. He then explained to us through tears that on the day that the judge imposed a death sentence for his conviction, someone had given him a package.  When he opened it he found an engraved bible along  with a letter from the mother and sister of a man he had killed.

gods-love-doesnt-leave-usThe writer explained to this inmate that although his actions had taken away her only brother and the only son of her mother, they both had forgiven him.  Even while their hearts were  still crushed with unbearable pain of loss, they had enough love of Christ within them to not only forgive him but to pray for him to come to the knowledge of salvation!  They implored him to seek Christ and receive the gift of eternal life that could never be taken from him.

Imagine the power of that forgiveness!  Because of their faith,  this family was able to surrender up to God any bitterness toward this man and instead share the hope of Christ with him.  It was that amazing love that brought this inmate to his knees, broken and submitted to Christ. For him, he had received a gift of mercy he did not deserve.   Such depth of  forgiveness can only come through Christ.  I cannot remember a more powerful testimony!

When I read the letter that these women had written, it was clear that this all surpassing power was from God working through them.  It was faith tested to the limit and yet shining through like light from heaven.  That day a new life began in the heart of that inmate all because two believers decided to let the will of God guide them to bring unconditional love to a man who was condemned to death.

There is nothing that God cannot do in your life if you are willing to submit to his will.  All the pain and struggles you face are simply the elements God uses to mold you into greatness.  He has not forgotten you.  Your trial is set for a time and soon your tears will turn to joy.   There are no losers in the body of Christ. We are all on a path designed by him long before we were born.  He has the plan and it cannot fail.  Are you ready to give up your control to get God’s divine blessings?   Don’t worry over your circumstance for the outcome has been decided in advance.  For believers, the war is won and we are the victors.  The devil himself knows that.  You now need to know that too.

Dear Lord,  I am praying for all who are going through a fiery trial and who may be filled with pain and uncertainty as to whether you will be there for them.  I pray that you will draw them near to you and bring them your peace.  Please help them to know that their grief is before you and you are working it all out despite the fact that it seems like it will never end.  Comfort them, dear Jesus.  Show your love to them in a very real way.  Give them hope that can only come from you.  Amen.

May God’s wisdom and  peace be with Israel and her leaders.

valley

For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him.

( Psalm 62:5)

None of us enjoy the prospect of waiting on God’s timing when we are in the midst of a painful trial.  It is so hard not to look at our impossible circumstance and still believe that God is working all things out.  It is especially difficult when the enemy uses our emotions to make us think that we have no hope and that it is out of our control.

In God’s word, we read that being out of our own control is actually a victory.  Every time God led his people to victory, he had to first render them powerless in their own might.  Job lost his children, his riches and his health but God was still able to bless the second half of his life more than the first.  Gideon’s army of 32,000 was reduced to just 300  men who had no weapons, yet with God’s power they were able to take down the Midian army and make them flee. King Hezekiah was no match for the vast Assyrian army who was coming against the Israelites. However, during the night, the angel of the Lord went through the enemy’s camp and struck down 185,000 Midianites.  The Israelites rose the next morning to find that the entire army was defeated by the hand of God.  Remember that the outcome of every battle you face is always victory when you are in Christ!

You will still have enemies to fight in this perishing world but they have no power to destroy you. All they will do is reveal that you have been declared a conqueror through the power of your God.  Because of what Christ has done for us, you have reason for hope knowing that your future is established in heaven.

boat-stormWhen Peter saw Christ walking on the water,  he spoke out, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” ( Matthew 14:28) Jesus told him to come, and Peter got out and began walking on top of the water.  Yet when he saw the wind, he was afraid and began to sink.   What made Peter afraid?  The same wind and waves were there when he got out of the boat.  Somehow, as he walked on the water toward Christ, Peter took his eyes from him.  As the wind blew and waves rose, Peter stopped believing that Christ alone  could keep him safe on the water and started to think that he needed to do something to stay up there, too.   Once you believe that Christ is not enough for your impossible situation, you begin to sink.  You look to your own power and strength to overcome your struggle and it will never be enough.  It is only in surrendering completely your weakness that you gain Christ’s strength!  Your faith is revealed when you trust that you do not have to see the answer to your prayer to know that it is before the throne of God and under his authority.

Victory over all of your trials comes when you can trust that God’s timing is right and that his will is perfect. Peace comes from knowing that God will never fail you no matter how impossible your situation seems.  He takes no pleasure in having you wait but each one of your struggles is a divine appointment with a merciful God who wants to reveal more of himself to you.  The testing of your faith produces a steadfastness that will have its complete effect that you may be perfect, complete and lacking in nothing. ( James 1:4)  There is a purpose for your pain.  It is working out a greater good.  It is preparing you to be royalty, reigning with Christ in a kingdom that will never end.  Though the days grow dark and filled with evil, believers have nothing to fear for their future is one of power.

We are told in Proverbs 3:5, “Trust in the LORD with all of your heart and lean not on your own understanding,”  “Although God’s ways may be hard to figure out, remember that he took you this far and he is more than able to get you to the finish line!

Don’t let your heart be troubled by the problems of this world.  Christ is coming back soon to make all things new.  Keep your eyes on Christ and focus on what is true and right.  The lies of the enemy have no power to steal your joy so don’t willingly give it up to him.  Hold on to the heritage that you have because of what Christ sacrificed for us.  Stand strong to the end knowing that God’s plan for you will work out not only for today but for ten thousand years down the way when you shall still find ways to praise him for all he has done.  God’s faithfulness will never end.

 

  “Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall” (Psalm 55:22)

I know that times are tough and everyone is being hit with seemingly endless trials and tribulations.   As the devil realizes that his time is growing short, the furor of hell has darkened this earth. We are living in a time of deception when many are compromising the truth.  In an attempt to mollify those who just want to hear what tickles the ear,  false teachers have watered down the gospel to the extent that even the devil isn’t offendedIt is no wonder that as life’s storms grow fiercer, many people are having difficulty trusting that God’s power is enough. 

The absolute truth to this is that Christ  will always have the authority over everything that touches your life.  God does not take a walk to the other side of heaven and forget about your pain and heartache. He sees each tear you shed.  He has a full view of all that concerns you.  All the storms in a believer’s life are permitted for an eternal reason. You are being made stronger and  powerfully equipped for battle as you  grow in your understanding of  God’s limitless power.  

It was with this knowledge that Job was able to cry out , “I know my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand upon the earth” ( Job 19:25).  Despite losing his children, his fortune and his health, Job still believed that God was with him!  He said of God, “When he is at work in the north, I do not see him; when he turns to the south, I catch no glimpse of him. But he knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.” (Job 23:9-10)  You don’t have to see God to know that he is with you every second and leading you on the path that he has chosen for you long before the foundation of the earth. The devil himself can see God’s presence and protection surrounding you.  One thing I have said before but is important enough to say again and that is that everything that comes against you MUST bow to the will of God for your life! You have nothing to fear for God will be with you to the end.

The perfect love of Christ breaks the bondage of fear.  You belong to Christ and his will for your life cannot be hindered by any of your problems or weaknesses.  Neither the world, the flesh nor the devil can alter the purpose and plan of God for you.  There are no impossible situations for God.  You need to look past the fiery furnace of every affliction and see the presence of Christ  who is there to protect you.  He alone has the final word on what happens to you in every circumstance.  Problems  increase when you start doubting that God will help you.  It always leads to failure when you can’t wait on God and  try to work things out your way.  Nothing will prevent Christ from completing the job he started in you.  Your pain will not crush you and it has no power to destroy you.  When you shrink back in fear over your problems, you allow the lie of Satan  to rule in your life. 

I know that you may be feeling overwhelmed by all that is causing you pain right now, but don’t give up. You need to remember that Jesus paid the price for you to have an abundant life in spite of all the troubles you face.  As he was dying on the cross for us, he cried out with his last breath, “IT IS FINISHED!”. That means that nothing on this earth can keep you in bondage! You have been set free.  Anything that opposes God’s will for you has now been rendered powerless.  The impact of those words should stay in your heart always.   Victory is living within you and the power that raised Christ from the dead is now your strength.  The trial you are in cannot take you from God’s sight nor stop him from helping you.

In order to defeat the enemy, you must know the truth.  In James 4:7, we read, “Submit yourselves; then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you“. The main command is to “submit yourselves to God” first.  It is by humbling yourself before him and trusting that he will help you that you get all the strength that you need to make the devil and his schemes flee from you!   The forces of hell shudder at the sight of one believer in prayer who trusts that God can do all things. 

YOU are that believer!  Let go of the lies and begin to trust in the power of God.  He will keep you in his perfect peace beyond your power to understand.  You can take God at his word who says: “You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast because he trusts in you.” ( Isaiah 26:3)

God is with you and I will be praying for you. You are never alone!

                                                                

 Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress. He stilled the storm to a whisper.(Psalm 108:28-29)

WHERE DOES MY HELP COME FROM?

 
Without a doubt, the immense struggles of these ending days can weigh your spirit down.  Scripture assures believers that we are not alone in our problems nor are we ever without help.  Although you may want to believe this promise, there are troubles that can leave you feeling totally helpless and defeated.  The raging storms of life brings many questions:  Where do you turn when you have just been given a diagnosis that your illness is terminal? What do you do when your spouse leaves you for someone else?  How do you continue to support yourself and your family now that your job has been terminated?  How do you break free from an addiction that is keeping you in bondage?  Our trials are getting more difficult.  It is one thing to trust God to get you to the Red Sea.  It is quite another to believe that he will part the waters and bring you safely across.
 
We are in a time when our faith is being tested to the limit.  The truth is that even though the storms are getting fiercer, we serve a God who remains the same.  His power to save and restore our lives has not changed.  Nothing can defeat a child of God for whom Christ has redeemed!
 
If you are facing serious medical issue, I pray you will understand  that this message is for you.  Your fear and uncertainty is before the eyes of God and he is with you.  It doesn’t matter what diagnosis your doctor gave you. The only one who knows what is going to happen to you is God.  It was he who has numbered your days before one of them came to be. Our God has the power over all sickness and disease.  He doesn’t care what stage your cancer is in.  He can heal a stage 4 as easily as a stage 1.  The only fact that matters is that his perfect will for you cannot be stopped by bad medical report!  God has planned what is best for you in this life and he will not deny you anything good. If he chooses to heal you now, his power can completely cast out all traces of illness and restore you to health.  But yet, whenever the time comes for you to leave this earth, you can take comfort knowing that even then the love of God will be with you.  It is my belief that those who belong to Christ will never die scared.  In chapter 7 of the book of Acts, we read about the faith of Stephen.  He was willing to be put to death for Christ.  As they were getting ready to kill him, Stephen shouted with joy, “Look”, he said, “I see heaven open and the Son of man standing at the right hand of God!”  At those words, the angry crowd stoned him to death.  What is amazing  is that Stephen saw Christ standing at the right hand of God.  All through the bible, Jesus is always seated at the right hand of God – so why then was he standing?  I believe with all of my heart that Christ stood ready to greet Stephen as he came to his eternal home.  Christ, the Son of the living God, is ready to meet with you when you leave this earth!  He will be faithful to you to the end.  When you are absent from the body, you are present with him!  You have nothing to fear from death.  God hears your prayers for family and loved ones and he can take care of them.
 
In any trouble, God is still sovereign.  His authority defeats impossible situations  Your serious financial problems cannot destroy you unless you believe that God is not enough.  Whether you have plenty or are in need, he is working all things out for the purpose for which he created you.  It is difficult to remain calm when you may be losing everything you own, but you must learn to trust that God is able to restore all that was taken and more. Everything on this earth and in the  heavens is his to give!  King David wrote in Psalm 37:25, ” I was young and now I am old, yet I have never seen the righteous begging for bread,”  God knows how to give you what you need if you will just believe and wait upon him!
 
You may suffer for while when your heart is broken by a betrayal  in a  marriage or relationship, but God is able to heal your heart and renew the future  of all who trust in him. Your pain cannot crush you when Christ holds your heart.    Believe the truth and not what your emotions tell you. There will come a time when your pain will be just a memory and  a remembrance of how God was faithful to bring you through it. 
 
My prayer for those who are shackled to deadly addictions is that you will reach for the hand of  Jesus who is willing to pull you from the mire and set you on high ground!  There is no bondage that the cross of Christ cannot  release you from.  You do not have to live as a slave to destruction if you are willing to surrender your weakness to gain Christ’ strength!  Jesus paid the price for your freedom.  It is yours for the asking.
 
In all things, God is more than able to give you the victory.  He is the Author and Finisher of all life.  There is nothing out of his control.  Whatever you are facing, remember that Christ came to give you life.  Let not your heart be troubled by the cares of this world for the love of God will never fail you!
 
I will be praying deeply for all those who are in pain and need to understand the truth of this message.
 

Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard” (Daniel 10:12)

Probably one of the hardest steps of faith is believing that God hears and will help us when we call on him in prayer.  We are still living in a world that has dimensions and boundaries and our finite minds have limits to our understanding in difficult matters.  We, therefore, need a measure of faith to see past that which is seen and go deeper into that which is unseen.  The only way to please God is by trusting him despite the storms that we face in a world that is literally being destroyed by sin.  Although it is not visible to our eyes right now, there is a battle that is taking place all around us in the heavenly realms.  Darkness is covering the horizons in every corner of this world as evil is seeking to destroy everything in God’s creation.  So when we are faced with a painful trial, it is easier to believe what we can see than what we can’t see.  Yet, it is at our lowest point of a struggle that we must lift our eyes in prayer and believe that our God is not going to let us be devoured by the enemy of destruction.

It may seem impossible to live with a  heart that is breaking but God has promised us in  his word that He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds” (Psalm 147:3)   He is not slow to help and he will never fail you even when it seems that you are being crushed by the weight of your pain. If you could see the very real battle that is taking place all around you, you would understand that you are being guarded by the forces of heaven. Every step you take as a believer is guided by the hand of God who knows the path you must take to victory.  Every prayer that you present to Christ is heard and he knows what is right and perfect for you.  Your whole life is before his eyes and he is answering you in ways that for now, you may not understand. The solid truth is that Christ never stops working all things out for your good!  When you lift up your prayers and petitions, you are surrendering all of your struggles to the will of God.  You are seeking his strength and his power to help you stand in faith believing the God who saw your unformed body in the womb and who numbered all of your days before even one of them came to be.  Nothing of your life is hidden from him.  Your fear and despair in a trial stem from not understanding the power of God and his unfailing love for you. Never will his eyes leave you for one second! Why can you not understand that you are worrying about things that Jesus already has worked out?

I have been through a lot of pain in my life but I can now rest in the fact that the purpose and plan God has for my life cannot be stopped. I can trust that he is right next to me when I pray and that he always hears.  No pain can consume my life because my God will always be bigger than anything I face.  I believe that God will go ahead of me in every battle and lead me into victory against my enemies.  I know that God is faithful and that I can take him at his word.  My future is in his hands and he is the joy of my life.  At the moment of Christ’ death, the temple veil that enclosed the holy of holies was torn signifying our new access to the throne of God in every prayer!  Believers are right there with Christ in every petition that is made to him. The devil can’t stop our prayers nor can he hinder God from answering them.

My dear friends, I say all this to encourage you through the trials you are facing.  You can still have a future despite a broken marriage or a relationship that is not working out.  Your financial struggles are not going to be forever.  Job situations and serious health issues are still under the sovereignty of God. My greatest lesson in God’s love came when I trusted him at a time when I had no strength of my own in an impossible situation.  His power is greater than a painful struggle or addiction.  His strength is perfected in any weakness that we surrender to him. We can trust our God in every area of life and we can trust him in death.  There is nothing good that he will ever withhold from those who belong to him. Never let the silence make you think that God is not doing something for your cause. Remember that Elijah had to wait on the mountaintop for the quiet whisper of God after he faced the powerful wind, the earthquake, and the great fire. No matter how or when he chooses to do it, never doubt that God will show up and fight against that which is coming against you!

Dear Lord,  I am lifting up those who are going through a storm in life that is making them weary. They want to believe that you will show up in time to help them but the enemy has been filling their minds with lies.  I pray that you will give them your peace that passes understanding and open their hearts to know that you are with them right now. They don’t have to see you or feel you in order to know that you are there.  Show them that their prayers are heard by you and you will resolve the issues they face. Let them know that you will never leave them to fight against the battles of this world alone.  I pray that they will listen for that small whisper of hope that you are ready to give them.  Lord Jesus, I believe your promises never fail.  Amen

           FOR I KNOW WHOM I HAVE BELIEVED  ( 2 Tim.1:12)

Dear friends and visitors to this blog,

I want everyone who comes to this site to know that I have a burden for those who are in pain, feeling troubled and who come looking for a message from God.  I never cease praying for those who have asked for prayer.  I take all of your prayer requests very seriously and they stay on my heart.  And God cares for each of you through your pain.  He is not going to leave you in your struggle.

Remember that no matter what you are going through,  God will always be bigger and he cares!  He has a way out and above every single situation that you go through. To those who have put their trust in the finished work of Christ at the cross, your future is sealed and the enemy cannot steal it away.  Don’t let any of the devil’s lies and frustrations make you doubt  God’s perfect plan for your life.  If you could see with spiritual eyes, you would know that if God is allowing a trial in the life of a believer, he has a plan to not only take you through it but to make you better for having gone through it.

Most importantly, I want you to remember that no situation is impossible for the true God who spoke the worlds into existence!  Never let anyone tell you that you circumstance is beyond all help. That is a lie.  There is nothing that God cannot and will not do for those who belong to him.

I care very deeply about all whom God sends to my site.  You matter here!  It was no coincidence that you stopped by for  God has a message in one of these articles just for you.  He is the one who has inspired these truths for me to write.

God bless you for now.  Stay in peace and take your stand in the battle.  Your God is very near and he is fighting for you!

            The righteous cry out and the LORD hears them (Psalm 34:17)

It is obvious that so many believers are growing weary in these dark days of oppression that we live.  Struggles surround us at every corner and it is hard to stave off the growing fears of uncertainty.  We were told in Scripture that these times would come and test the faithful, but how do we keep standing when the ground is trembling and darkness is filling the sky?

Fear is a tool that the enemy uses to take your focus from the truth.  When you understand that your hope in Christ is secure, you can cease striving. There is nothing that is going to destroy a believer who is holding onto the promises that Jesus died to give.  Your future is never determined by your circumstance.  Trials that you face are only the wind that brings you closer to God.   Every single one of your struggles are used by God to equip you for the battles that come against you.

  Throughout the bible, God allowed his people to be taken to the end of their own strength but yet they were conquerors over all that came against them.  It was in the lion’s den that Daniel watched as his God shut the mouths of the lions and brought him safely out.   The three Jewish boys were bound and thrown into the furnace for refusing to bow in worship to Nebuchadnezzar.(Daniel 3)  Yet it was there that  they came face to face with the Son of God who protected them from even the smell of  fire and smoke. Young David ran against the giant, Goliath, in the power of the God in whom he trusted.  He never doubted that his God could save him as he killed that heathen Philistine with just a stone.  King Hezekiah cried out to his God for help when the Assyrian army was surrounding his people on all sides.  He had no power to face this mighty army but his God did!  We are told in 2 Kings 19:35, ” That night the angel of the Lord went out and put to death a hundred and eighty-five thousand men in the Assyrian camp. When the people got up the next morning – there were all dead bodies!”   It was God who fought their battle and saved them.  You need to understand clearly that when you are in Christ, you are a force to be reckoned with!

Beloved, you must understand that no battle you ever face is hopeless.   You don’t need to run from your problems; you just need to turn to your God!  Never lose faith when you get to the end of your ability for it is at that point that you  discover the all-encompassing power of  God.  Jesus paid the price for our redemption and to give us a future with hope.  The enemy may prowl around trying to  rob you of your joy but he can never steal the future that Christ paid with his blood.  Death has no sting for Jesus overcame the grave.  All of your momentary trials are working out a divine purpose to prepare you for the royalty that awaits you in eternity.  Your painful situation has a time to end.  God knows how to take you from your distress and into his peace if you will just surrender to him. 

We are living in a time like no other.  We are watching as  wars, famines, floods, severe weather, poverty, sickness of all kinds of evil are permeating this entire world.  The hearts of many have grown cold as marriages are failing, evil and violence are increasing and all forms of perversions are becoming common. The only hope we have is the enduring love of Christ who will never fail.  He is called Faithful and True and he is  ready to return and gather those who love him. 

May you know this day that you are never out of God’s sight for a second.  Whatever you are suffering is before the eyes of God.  Remember,  “The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit”. (Psalm 34:18)

 

Dear Lord,  I am praying for those who are struggling with a painful situation in their lives.  They feel like they are losing in the battle that they face.  I pray for your peace and strength to fill them.  Let them know without a doubt that you are with them to the end.  For those who have financial problems – may you meet them and provide for what they need.  Those who have marriage and relationship problems – may you join them in peace and restore their families.  I pray for you to heal the pain of those who are sick or who have lost a loved one.  May you comfort and heal those who are in serious bondage to alcohol or drugs.  I pray for your favor in their lives in all that they need.  And may they know that you will not fail them no matter how impossible their problem is to them. Amen.

Those who are with us are more than those who are with them  (2 Kings 6:16)

How big does the storm in your life have to get for you to take your eyes off of Christ and put them on your circumstance?  Although God may not respond to your prayer the way you thought he should, that surely does not mean that he failed you.  Your cries in the night for help are not going unanswered for they are always heard by a God who knows how to provide for your need.  He has created a course for your life and the twists and turns you must take are not meant to hinder you but rather to get you ready for something far greater. Scripture is filled with verses where God’s strength is revealed in those who trusted him.

We read in Exodus in the  Old Testament where the Israelites were led on a forty-year journey in the desert to get to the land God promised to give them.   But because their hearts were  hardened and unbelieving, God directed them the long way around.   His plan was to give them peace from their enemies and  a land that was overflowing with every good thing.  However, most of them did nothing but grumble and gripe to God.  Their faith was not in God but focused instead on only that which their eyes could see.  They did not have faith that God could give them what he promised  though every day he provided them with all that they needed.  It was  for that reason most of them died before they ever got to the land.  They thought the giants in the land were bigger than their God!  They were dead wrong.  Only Joshua and Caleb had faith enough to trust God and they led their people to win over the enemy in the land given them. 

In Genesis, Joseph was thrown into a pit by his brothers and then sold into slavery.  As dark as it was in that pit, God was using this injustice against Joseph to get him ready to rule in the palace of Egypt!  Joseph had to travel as a slave in chains to Egypt.  He was sold to a commander there named Potiphar and forced to work in his house.  Joseph then was thrown into prison after being falsely accused of a crime.  Here is a man who went from the pit, to chains, to slave and then to prison.  Where was his God?  As painful as it was for Joseph to endure all this, God was using this trial as training.  He was equipping this young man to be the top royal commander second only to Pharaoh.  That was quite an elevation for just a young shepherd boy.

 The truth is that God will not promote you to a higher calling without first equipping you to succeed.   The pain that you are experiencing  is the chisel God is using to perfect his plan for you.  You are literally becoming a work of art in the kingdom of God!  Your struggles never had any power to destroy you.  God knows well how to cause all things to work in harmony with the purpose he has ordained for you.  All of your troubles are unfolding into his perfect plan  to bring you to victory.  You are not going to lose this battle if you can keep your eyes on Christ and in his mighty power. 

Though you can get weary as the pain of your situation overwhelms you, there is hope knowing that there is a divine purpose for your momentary problems.  It should help you to know that God saw these stumbling blocks in your path before you were born.  He could have led you around them but instead  he has chosen to use them to make you stronger as he takes you over and above in strength and glory.   His plan is to make you royalty in a kingdom that will never end.   It was for this exact purpose that Christ died so that you might have an abundant life even while facing the wind and the waves of the raging sea of life.  

My prayer is that you understand that all God allows in your life, he allows for a specific purpose.  He will never send you alone in the battle for he is always with you.  Nothing can defeat you.  Your marriage problems, health issues, financial crisis or any struggle you face  cannot keep his purpose for you  from being fulfilled.  The days remaining in this perishing world are numbered and known  by God.  He sees the beginning and the end and all that goes on in between.  He is with you right now.  You must never let the lies of the enemy make you feel defeated.  If you are a child of God, that can never happen!  Don’t be like the Israelites wandering in the desert  who  did not have faith that God could take them where he promised.   God can and will do abundantly more than anything you can ask or imagine!  

Cease striving, my friends, the battle is won.  The enemy knows it and you need to know it too.  If your trust is in Christ, he already has your situation worked out.  All you have left to do is to have faith and take him at his word!

Dear Lord, I pray that those who are facing trials and pain in their lives right now may know that you are working them out for a purpose that is good.  Help them to stand in faith through this storm knowing that you are with them to the end.  Amen

                                                  He has a way to take you to victory

 

Fear and discouragement are two of the most powerful weapons that the enemy uses to bring believers down.  Although the power of Christ lives in us, the storms of life can fill us with hopelessness and anxiety as the lies of darkness attack our soul.   These fiery darts of evil attack our mind to magnify our problems and diminish the power of our God.  It is a lie from the depth of hell!

 

As difficult as it is to stand your ground in times of trouble, the fact is that Jesus is a powerful stronghold and a strong tower to run to for protection from the battle.  You absolutely cannot be defeated from an enemy that has been rendered powerless through the cross of Jesus Christ.  His death and resurrection finished the work of redemption and bought for us a promise of eternal life with him. 

 

In Psalm 107:28-28 we read, “Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress. He stilled the storm to a whisper, the waves of the sea were hushed”.  Jesus alone has the power to still the storms in your life and quiet the waves of your troubles.  The darkness of your situation cannot diminish the light of Christ whose power has no limits.  The world around you may be crumbling but God will lift you out of your difficulties and set your feet upon a rock.  As you trust in him, your cries will be changed to songs of praise as you watch the right hand of God bring victory in your life and give you strength to stand in faith. 

 

As the days grow short and evil increases, the destroyer will try to rob you of your hope.  He will attempt to fill your mind with anxiousness and fear as you endure the struggles of this life.  If he can discourage you with his lies, he can make you ineffective for the kingdom of God.  Satan wants to make you feel defeated when Christ has made you more than a conqueror. That which comes against you is filtered through the Savior’s hand and he knows the good that he can accomplish through it. He can do what he says he can do.   

 

 There is nothing in this life that can stand against the purpose and plan God has for you.  It does not matter what the doctor’s report says for God alone has determined the number of your days. He does not care about what stage your cancer is in, his power will always be greater.  Your financial struggle is no match for our God who owns the world and everything in it. The pain and heartache you suffer will bring you nearer to God for he is close to the brokenhearted.  He will dry your tears and give you his perfect peace if you will keep your eyes on him.  God is the restorer of homes and families and he can heal your brokenness. Christ who died to give us the victory is a mighty force to be reckoned with. Years of addiction and bondage can be healed as you surrender your struggles to the nail pierced hands of Jesus.  He won’t fail so you can’t fail!

 

In the wake of all that you are going through, never surrender to the enemy!  Just trust and hold on to the nail pierced hands of Jesus who always has a plan and a promise you can trust.  He is with you right now.  You are never alone!

  When you cannot help yourself, God  will lift you and set you free 

 

 

No matter what storm you are going through in your life, God has a way through it and above it.  For believers, his strength will always be all that you need because he knew your name long before he formed the earth.  That is so hard to fathom because our mind cannot contain a truth this great.  The true God who knows all things loved you before you were born!

 

God planned every aspect of your life from where you would be born, to whom and when.  Even where you live was ordained in God’s masterful plan.  His desire was that all would come to him and be saved.  He knew that problems you would have and he understood your weaknesses.  He knows your sin and your rebellion, yet he still has a purpose and a plan to give you victory through the blood of Jesus Christ.  Romans 8:31 tells us that,”If God is for us, who can be against us?”   He justifies us from our sins and intercedes on our behalf so that we can truly be more than conquerors despite the hard times and heavy burdens we carry.

 

Each day is an opportunity to bring glory to God as you stand in faith trusting that he us with you in all things.  If we could understand a mere iota of the love of God for us our lives would be changed forever.  His love is not based on what we do for there is no way we could earn it.  It is based solely on who he is for God is love.  The only way that we can walk in the ways of love is to know Christ and to have him work through us. 

 

The troubles of this world cannot defeat us no matter how weary we become.  When Jesus cried out on the cross, “It is finished”, that was the promise shout of victory for those who believe on him.  The price was paid by the blood of Jesus and we are no longer in bondage to the evil of this world. My friends, we will have troubles but they are working in you a glory that will defy the enemy of your soul.  You cannot lose! The enemy can’t take what was redeemed by Christ for you.  He has a way to help you and he will not fail.

 

Though the evil one will try to convince you that you will drown in the tears of your affliction, you must not give in.  Remember the truth that set you free.  Jesus has overcome the problems of this world and he will never let you go through anything that he does not have a plan to take you safely through.  He knows your name and he knows where you are.  He is willing to bear your pain and carry your sorrows. He has the power to lift you from your heartache and sustain you when you have no strength of your own.

 

Lift up your eyes for all that you need is with you now. You can truly face tomorrow despite your pain because Jesus is with you.  Let his peace be your comfort because he is working all things out for you now.  You don’t have to feel it or see it.  You just have to know that his promises are real.

 

Dear Jesus,  I pray that  you open the eyes of all who need to hear from you and let them know that you are with them and that you are in total control of their situation. Surround them with your peace and help them to understand the depth of your love. Let them know that they have nothing to fear, for you are with them to the end!  Amen

                                         Seeing the victory ahead

 

Standing strong when troubles overwhelm you is the key to trusting God. It is having eyes to see the victory ahead despite the darkness that surrounds you. The hope we have in all of our problems is found in Jesus Christ who paid the price for our peace. He has promised us that the afflictions of this world cannot destroy us because his power to save us will always be greater than any weapon used against us to bring us down. There is no reason to fear when Jesus has promised to light the way out of the darkness of every painful trial.  Through him, you have the power to demolish strongholds and bondages in your life.  By God’s own command, angels are dispatched from heaven to surround you and to help you when you fall.    

 

 In  2 Kings 6:16, we read of the prophet Elisha who was in danger from the King of Aram.  The king totally surrounded the city with horses and chariots in order to attack and kill Elisha.  When Elisha’s servant saw the great number of the enemy around them he was afraid.  Elisha told him not to fear because “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them”.  Then Elisha prayed that God would open his servant’s eyes to see and understand this.  When the servant looked again, he saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire from heaven ready to defend them. Elisha was saved that day by his faith as God defeated his enemies.  As in the battles that we face today, God’s power will always be more than enough.

 

Those who give up when life gets hard have fallen into the enemy’s trap.  They have believed the deceiver who says that God is too far away to hear your cry, or that your situation is impossible even for God. As time goes by, he will even try to convince you that God will not show up in time to save you.  But through your pain, you must remember that these lies all come from an enemy who has been defeated at the cross of Christ.  He wants you to focus on your problem instead of your God.  You must decide in your struggle if you are going to believe what you see and what you feel or stand in your faith and believe the truth of what God says he can do.

 

Through it all, you must not lean on your own understanding but trust that God’s ways are higher and that he has a better way.  Even his timing has a specific purpose that will help you to grow in the wisdom and knowledge of his love for you. He knows your past and he can see your future.  Most importantly, he knows how to rescue you from your problems and pain and give you back the future that the he planned for you.

 

In the 23rd Psalm, King David wrote in verse 4,”Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me.”  David learned to trust God even as he had to run from those who were trying to kill him.  Despite the danger he was in, David kept his eyes on God because he knew that God would never fail him. He understood that God had a power that would always be greater than that which came against him. 

 

God is always with you in any battle that you face in this life. Whatever burden you are carrying, it is my prayer that you will have peace in the knowledge that God is always in control.  

 

 

Times are tough and the days are growing short.  It is difficult to stand in faith as the darkness fills the world.  Sometimes the pain we experience is just too much for us to bear.  Many may wonder if God is truly with them in all things. For instance, where is God when a loved one dies or when bad things happen to innocent people? This question and other similar ones have troubled believers everywhere.

 

The truth that remains is that God is with us in everything and anything that comes against us.  God’s plan was for us to live in paradise with him forever, but because of man’s sin, death and destruction came into our world. But the love of God never left us.

 

Sin is rebellion against God and it allowed Satan and his demons to roam this earth seeking to destroy us.  We were doomed. “But God so loved the world that he sent his only Son that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life”. (John 3:16)

His love for us was so great that he was willing to sacrifice the blood of his Son Jesus to bring us back to fellowship with him.

 

God’s love for us continues even though we are sinners who turned from the ways of God.  To the ends of the earth, God has sent his word to seek out the lost and offer the free gift of salvation through the cross of Jesus. And though this world is perishing, those whose hope is in Christ will never be destroyed.  Death that can take the body can never touch the soul of a believer.  Jesus said in John 5:24, “Whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.” That means that no sickness,financial problems, divorce, pain or even death can end God’s promise for us of victory and eternity with him. 

 

Life on this earth is fleeting.  Eternity with God is never-ending and it is there that you will understand that the storms in your life were only the winds that brought you closer to the reward that God has prepared for you.  You will know then that God never left your side despite what you had to suffer.  The strength to endure and not to fear was always with you and that his power was manifested in your weakness.

 

There will always be death and evil on this earth until Jesus comes back.  That is why as believers we must not conform to this world but be set apart.  We must live different lives and not react as those who have no hope.  The sickness or loss of someone close to us may tear at our heart, but our strength must come from the hope that God has given us.

 

Our life on this earth is not the end.  Innocent people will continue to suffer at the hands of evildoers and sickness will take loved ones from this earth, but God’s justice and purpose will always prevail.  We must trust that God will use for good all that comes against us.

 

The Apostle Paul suffered torture and pain in his life, but he knew that it was all going to be used for the glory of God.  For him, to die was gain but to live was for Christ.  He knew that God had an eternal purpose for everything that he had to endure.

 

When we don’t understand the reason God allows pain and suffering in our lives and those whom we love, we must have faith that God is always at work in us, and that those who endure to the end will receive the reward that far outweighs it all! The trials of this earth are temporary, but the reward of God is eternal.  For now, I pray that you understand that God will be with you in your pain and will take you through the valley of your tears.  He is always faithful!

 

Dear Lord,  the pain and burdens of this world can bring us to our knees.  Sometimes we falter in our faith as we struggle against the war that the enemy is waging against us.  I pray that those who may have experienced a loss of a loved one or who is being overwhelmed by a situation that seems hopeless.  Fill them with your peace and love.  May they know that no problem is bigger than the God that they serve. Help them to understand that your ways are higher and better than ours.  Give them the strength to persevere in the battle and to keep their eyes on you.  Your perfect plan for their life will never fail!  We give you praise. Amen.

 

(Photo by Rob Bohning)

God’s love is with you at all times!

 

 

It is easier to trust God in the good times.  It takes much more faith to keep that trust during painful trials.  Tough times happen to everyone.  It is sometimes difficult to believe that God is willing to take you through the impossible situations in your life.  But faith is the most important thing that you must have in this age of crisis and turmoil  The peace of God that transcends all understanding is predicated on believing that God’s word is true.  Without faith it is impossible to please God because faith is the key to all the strength and power that God has to give us. It simply means that you believe that God is bigger than your problems.

 

Scripture records the miracles that Jesus performed while on this earth.  In Matthew 9:29, two blind men asked Jesus to heal them.  Jesus replied, “According to your faith will it be done to you”, and their sight was restored. A ruler came and asked Jesus to put his hand on his daughter that she might live.  Because of the ruler’s faith, Jesus brought his daughter back to life. The Apostles also worked by faith.  In Acts 14, Paul looked directly at a crippled man and saw that he had the faith to be healed. He called for the man to stand and he was healed. Many people were saved and their bodies healed as they took that first step to trust that Jesus was truly the Savior of the world. 

 

True faith always honors God. It is being sure of what you hope for and certain of what you do not see. It is unbridled belief in the Son of God who gave his life for us.  There is nothing that God won’t do for those who put their trust in the finished work of Jesus on the cross.  It was Jesus who called us to lay our burdens at his feet.  Perfect peace is given to all who are willing to trust him with everything.  Though it may be difficult to stay strong when your world is crumbling all around you, the name of Jesus will always be your shield.

 

 

 In Mark 9:24, a man with a son possessed by a spirit asked Jesus for his help.  When Jesus asked the man if he believed that he could heal his son, the man answered, “I do believe Lord; help me overcome my unbelief!”.  Jesus is so merciful to remember that we are weak.  He will never hold it against us if we ask for his help to believe him through our struggles. 

 

 

 Striving to work out impossible situations will never succeed. It is only the power of God that can rescue us from the storm.  You may have a serious health issue, financial problems, drug or alcohol addictions or even a broken heart but nothing is too hard for our God who created the heavens and the earth and everything in them.  We are told by God in Isaiah 41:13, “For I am the LORD your God who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you”. That is a promise that Jesus bought for us at Calvary. 

 

Whatever trial or pain you are in, remember that God’s love will never leave your side. Call on him right now to strengthen you to overcome your unbelief.  He will help you take that first step in trust so that you will know that God is big enough to conquer all of your problems.

 

Marianne Bernard

Marianne Bernard

I seek first the kingdom of Christ because everything else in this world is perishing. All that I have is from God who is always faithful. I have worked hard all my life and will continue as long as God lends me breath. The mistakes and bad judgments I made in my life all stemmed from me trying to work things out by myself. I have learned the hard way that the victory over all of my problems and the answers to all of my desires lie solely in my Savior, Jesus Christ. It is now my desire to share the words that God gives me to encourage and give hope to others who need the strength that only faith in Christ can give.

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