When I was in high school, society pushed teens to ask, “Who am I?”. It was a big thing for us to “find ourselves”. I fear we are seeing the effects of too many years of wanting our own identity. Ephesians 2:10 tells us that those who trust in Jesus Christ are His workmanship. Our purpose is good works. Good works “which God prepared beforehand”. Reading and studying the Bible as well as praying will help us understand those good works.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for making us Your workmanship. Please help us to seek what You desire for good works.
Those of us who have placed our trust in Jesus Christ have the best identity. I fear we keep clinging to the identity we want to have instead of seeing what identity Christ offers. Ephesians 2:8-9 tells us that we have been saved by grace not by anything we have done. The reason is so we will not boast about works.
I think one of the hardest things we have to do is to let go of our personal identity. In the U.S. we are so individualistic that we encourage living our own way. Our wishes and desires get in the way of what God tells us. I am humbled by the reminder that I can’t do anything to earn my salvation. Hopefully this pushes me to seek Christlike identity by reading, studying and obeying God’s Word.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for the humbling reminder in Your Word that we cannot earn salvation. Please help me to live this for Your honor and glory. I want to serve You more.
Ephesians 1 is loaded with expressions of God’s generosity. I like verse 18 – as we follow what Ephesians 1 has been talking about we will have our “hearts enlightened”. The “what” is the hope and riches that God promises. I think sometimes we have the wrong kind of hope and the wrong kind of riches in mind. God is more interested in the eternal and we end up getting stuck in the temporal. My desire is to continue studying Scripture to learn about the “whats” in Ephesians 1:18. At least as much as is possible in this life. I expect to learn by leaps and bounds in the next life.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for the many blessings I can learn about from Your Word. Please guide me as I learn the “what” You tell us about in this verse. Help me to share this with others.
Hello Friends, welcome to 2023 (tomorrow). Each year I pick a theme for my blog. 2022 was wisdom/fear of God. I spent much of the year in Proverbs. For 2023 I want to focus on a Biblical self-image. We live in a society that has an “it’s all about me” attitude. We have added pressure on ourselves to measure up to an impossible and very selfish standard. The Bible is the only place for us to gain freedom from this prison.
Most of my audience are people who claim a relationship with God based on the gospel (good news) of Jesus death, burial, and resurrection. We need to make sure our life focus is based in the Bible. I hope to help with that in my weekly posts.
Dear Heavenly Father, please guide me to share the truth of who we are in Christ. Please let my words direct people to You. Thank You for all You will do in the coming year.
Friendship is a necessity of life. No one can live well without good companionship. Problems happen when we don’t choose friends wisely. We need to choose friends who seek Biblical wisdom and will help us do the same.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for the wisdom that comes from Your Word. Please help me to walk with wise people and encourage wisdom in those with whom I interact. Your way is the only way worth living.
I was at CTCA for my one month post-surgery follow up this week. God has sent many blessings along the way, despite the challenges of surgery. At this point, I have been “released” and do not need any more treatment.
I still can’t say specifically why God chose this journey for me, but I know God has a plan to bring honor to Himself. He will equip me to do His will. There is nothing better in life than living for God.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for all of the blessings and for giving me strength to endure the challenges. Please help me to live the purpose You have for me.
1. From an old English parsonage, down by the sea, There came in the twilight a message for me; Its quaint Saxon legend, deeply engraven, It has, seems to me, God’s teaching from Heaven. And on through the hours the quiet words ring, Like a low inspiration: “DO THE NEXT THING.”
2. Many a questioning, many a fear, Many a doubt has its quieting here. Moment by moment, let down from Heaven, Time, opportunity, guidance are given. Fear not tomorrows, child of the King, Trust them with Jesus. DO THE NEXT THING.
3. Do it immediately; do it with prayer; Do it reliantly, casting all care; Do it with reverence, tracing Christ’s hand Who placed it before you with earnest command, Stayed on Omnipotence, safe ‘neath His wing, Leave all resultings. DO THE NEXT THING.
4. Looking to Jesus, ever serener, Working or suffering, let this be your demeanor. In His dear presence, the rest of His calm, Let the light of Christ’s countenance be your psalm. Strong in His faithfulness, praise and sing! Then, as He commands you, DO THE NEXT THING.
This poem was popularized by Elizabeth Elliot. It is loaded with truth. There are difficulties in life. We will not be 100% free from them while we live. God has given us tools to keep moving forward. He has given us His word and other believers to help us along the way. All we need to do is cling to Him and “do the next thing”.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for providing a way to do the next thing. I ask for Your help as many of us are weary and don’t feel as though we can continue. Please give us strength and help us to honor You.
Right now, it can feel like everything in life is about COVID-19. It is a major part of what is happening in the world. However, I hope we don’t get sidetracked as we deal with the affects of this virus in our lives. No matter how this has changed your life, God is still the same as He has always been (Hebrews 13:8). He is waiting to help you have a greater purpose in life than what you can imagine. Hebrews 13:20-21 is a prayer that God will work in us. Some think this shows God as selfish. However, God will never be selfish. He gave His only Son to save us from the worst. What pleases God is good for us. Try God’s way – I think you’ll find this to be true. He wants more for us than we want for ourselves.
Dear Heavenly Father, please help me to live the purpose You have planned. I don’t want the challenges of life to deter me from serving You. Please help me to encourage others to seek You and follow Your way. I pray that through this time You would equip us to serve You. Thank you for all You have been doing and all You will do.