Gift of Peace

Peace can seem like an elusive aspect of faith. We are meant to live in peace with one another and to do that we must have peace within ourselves. We are not left to our own devices to find this peace. We don’t have to search to find it. It is a gift that is given to us.

And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts.
For as members of one body you are called to live in peace.
And always be thankful.
Col 3:15 nlt

Jesus gives us peace freely without hesitation but it is up to us to let it have the dominate role in our heart. We must let it control our hearts. There is only one way that peace can regulate our responses and that is to trust the One who gives it to us.

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you,
all whose thoughts are fixed on you!
Isa 26:3 nlt

Peace is not just an emotion of our hearts it is also the thoughts of our minds. If we allowdove-41260_640 the confusion, turbulence, and anger of the world to take precedence over our thoughts we will have no peace. Jesus is to have first place in our hearts and minds. That is the only way peace will have the power to work in us and through us in this world. We have to claim the gift of peace and use it for His glory.

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you.
I do not give to you as the world gives.
Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Jo 14:27 niv

Jesus gives us peace for all time. He doesn’t give it then take it back. It is ours to keep. What we do with the gift is up to us. We can hide it away, we can ignore it, we can even claim we never received it or that we lost it but that won’t change the truth. We won’t have worried or fearful hearts if we understand the simple truth that peace has been given to us by the Prince of Peace and it is ours forever.

Blessings this day of grace,
patricia

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Strength and Joy

I am not a strong person but I am not powerless. I am often afraid and can be discouraged yet I am not defeated. Seems I am a contradiction of terms but it all makes sense when you know my Lord.

Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.

Isa 42:10 nlt

Sometimes I allow the negatives of fear and discouragement to step in and take up space in my heart. Usually, this happens when I don’t get enough sleep, don’t eat healthy meals, or spend too much time with unhappy people who drag me down with their anger andcat-564202_640 frustrations. When negatives are unchecked I feel heavy and tired, unbalanced and confused. However, I know how to have my peace and well-being restored. I talk to Jesus.

My flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
Ps 73:26 niv

Without Jesus life is filled with negatives. With Him, life is filled with positives.

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 
Eph 6:10 niv

He is my strength and my joy.

Blessings this day of grace,
patricia

 

 

You Are Mine

Truth is sometimes hard to believe and there are times I find myself doubting it. My heart knows what I read in the Bible is God’s Word and is truth but my head will question it. What is written in Isaiah my heart believes without question, and my head believes it too, but not without questions.

“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you.
I have called you by name; you are mine.
Isa 43:1b nlt

God has called me by name. He knows my name! And He says “you are mine.”  He doesn’t love-1196950_640suggest that I belong to Him He states it. There is no question it’s a fact I belong to Him! Not only do I belong to Him, He paid for me. I may not be worthy of Him but He doesn’t think I am worthless.  Amazing.

“From eternity to eternity I am God.
No one can snatch anyone out of my hand.
No one can undo what I have done.”
Isa 43:13 nlt

My heart knows without hesitation or difficulty that this is true. In my heart I accept the fact with confidence and certainty. But my head, my hard stubborn head is at odds with my heart. It contradicts my heart,  it argues and debates what the heart knows. Always wondering…what if?  When my thoughts begin to get confused I remember what Paul wrote to the Philippians;

I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize
for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.
Let all who are spiritually mature agree on these things.
If you disagree on some point, I believe God will make it plain to you.
But we must hold on to the progress we have already made.
Phil 3:14-16 nlt

Blessings this day of grace,
patricia

Don’t Be Afraid, Don’t Worry

There are times when I am worried and afraid. Not crying, shaking, hiding in the closet worried and afraid just a bit fearful or anxious and nervous. When I talk about it to Jesus He reminds me,

       Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.baby-20339_640                                                                Isa 41:10

Reading this I see the reason I am sometimes worried.  It’s because I forget that He is with me, He holds me in His hand. But why do I forget this?

I forget because I get busy with life. I put off praying and meditating until I have the time. I don’t put Him first because there are other things that need to be done or more honestly, things I want to do. When I don’t say good morning to Him putting Him first, when I don’t talk with Him throughout the day, when I go to sleep without thanking Him for the day and saying good night to Him I am not the woman He created me to be. I am weak and easily shaken, I get discouraged and lazy, I am filled with anxiety. God has given me and you all we need to be the people He wants us to be.

For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity,
but of power, love, and self-discipline.
2 Tim 1:7

I think, really I know, the devil is the pushy-in-your-face sort who charges in uninvited anytime he wants but Jesus is not like that. Jesus knows that I struggle with worry and anxiety and will help me when I ask. He will step in whenever He sees a child of God in need but He will not force His way. He shows us the way but whether we go with Him or not is our choice. We have been given a spirit of power, love, and self-discipline we have but to access that power.

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything.
Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.
 Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand.
His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
Phil 4:6-7

Blessings this day of grace
patricia

Image:pixabay
Scripture: NLT

Thorns and Strength

In 2 Corinthians 12, Paul tells us he had visions and revelations from the Lord. He doesn’t say what the visions and revelations were only that they were so astounding they cannot be expressed in words and no human is allowed to tell.(1-4) Then he tells us he was given a thorn in the flesh to keep him from becoming proud. (7b) He begged the Lord to take it away but the Lord said,”My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” Paul then tells us he is glad to boast of his weakness so the power of Christ can work through him.(8-9)) Paul learned when he was weak, then he was strong.(10b)

I am nothing like Paul. I have never been given visions or revelations, there is nothing about the Lord I am not allowed to talk about, but I have a thorn in the flesh that keeps me thorny-dragon-387217_640from becoming proud.  It’s not a disease, it won’t kill me. It is just a physical anomaly that can be painful but usually just bothersome and sometimes embarrassing. No one can tell anything is different about me by looking at me but there are times it is obvious I feel unwell. And unlike Paul, I continually ask to have this “thorn” taken from me, not just three times but over and over. I know I am weak and during a bad spell, I don’t feel the power of Christ resting on me. Oh, how I want to be like Paul!

There are times that I stand strong and weather the storm but there are as many times I am weak and I just go home, lock the door, and feel sorry for myself. I am blessed to know Jesus and He doesn’t leave me alone in my self-pity. He reminds me;

A joyful heart is good medicine. But a broken spirit dries up the bones.
Prov 17:22 nas

Let all that I am praise the LORD; may I never forget the good things he does for me.
He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases.
Ps 103:2-3

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you,
all whose thoughts are fixed on you!
Isa 26:3

I don’t write this for sympathy or to make myself sound like I am so good and holy.  I write it to encourage you.  I think we all have a thorn of some sort. It may be physical, mental, emotional; caused by disease, an accident, trauma, circumstances, financial or family problems, whatever is chronic or continuous. My hope is that you will know that you are not alone. There are many who are hurting and none need be alone. Call on Jesus, He is never too busy to take your call, there is never a busy signal, you will never be put on hold, and never disconnected. Talk to Jesus and all will be well with your soul.

Blessings this day of grace,
patricia

All scripture unless otherwise noted
from New Living Translation
Image:pixabay