Archive | April 2020

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 39 – Faith as Small as a Mustard Seed

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 39

Faith as Small as a Mustard Seed

Lord, as with everything, one’s faith is tested in trials and strengthened in a relationship with You. Extreme faith is a gift from the Spirit. And yet, Your word promises it takes only a small amount of faith to do great things. Hardships test the faith and produce perseverance. Is it even possible to increase my faith without the trials? Either way, I have faith in You to work all things together for the good of those who love You (Romans 8:28).

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

My beloved friend, when you encounter hardship, exercise your faith. It takes only a speck of faith to accomplish great things. “Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there.’ And it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you” (Matthew 17:19-20). Even a little faith can move mountains.

“Truly I tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer” (Matthew 21:21-22). But when you doubt, you are as a wave on the sea, tossed back and forth, double-minded. You should not expect to receive anything you ask for (James 1:7).

Consider it pure joy whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything (James 1:2-4). Faith and trust go hand in hand. Trust in Me with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways, submit to Me and I will direct your paths (Proverbs 3:5-6). Listen to My voice and submit yourself to Me. Trust that I am in control of all things; have faith that I will give you anything you ask for in My name.

Faith is a gift from Me. You have been saved through faith by My grace (Ephesians 2:8), and you live by faith every day. There are different kinds of faith. Extreme faith is a gift of the Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:9). Your faith will make you well. When you ask for healing, believe in it! Whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours (Mark 11:24). Nothing is impossible when you believe (Matthew 17:20). Jesus dwells in your heart through faith. He is able to do immeasurably more than all you ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within you (Ephesians 3:20). Have faith and believe it!

When you experience a breakdown in your faith, do not focus on the obstacle in front of you. But fix your eyes upon Jesus. Do not grow weary and lost heart (Hebrews 12:2-3). Do not fix your eyes on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal (2 Corinthians 4:18). There is but One who remains in control of all things; it is I, the Sovereign God, who reigns on high and rules all things and all people at all times. I am trustworthy. I never change. Put your faith and trust in Me; I AM.

Always remember, never will I leave you, never will I forsake you (Hebrews 13:5). I love you deeply and want what is best for you. I am always at work behind the scenes. I have a plan and purpose for you life (Jeremiah 29:11) and I am working all things together for your good (Romans 8:28). You are my beloved child, and I care for you deeply. I desire that you mature in your faith, even if it involves allowing you to endure difficult times to do so. Stand firm in your faith; I will provide the strength and hope to persevere. I know what is best for you, and I will see you through your challenges. Have faith, even as small as a mustard seed!

Prayer:

Father in heaven, thank You for the gift of faith, even though it may be small. Thank You that even a speck of faith can move mountains. You are an awesome, all powerful God, who works through Your weakest people to show Your great strength and power. Almighty God, will you meet with me now and increase my faith and trust in You. Work Your grace and Your power in my life. Give me the confidence I need to trust in You wholeheartedly. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Father God, please share with me how my faith in You works to move mountains. (Record every word and thought He gives you.)

 

  • Jesus, my Lord, I want to have the faith of the centurion (Luke 7:6-10) and the faith of the woman who touched Your robe to be healed (Mark 5:34). Teach me how to have that kind of faith. What must I do? (Write down all thoughts and ideas Jesus gives you in this moment.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, please give me the gift of faith. I want to believe and not doubt. Help me overcome my unbelief (Mark 9:24). Please give to me as You determine. What might that be? (Journal the thoughts and verses the Holy Spirit gives you.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Dear Father in heaven, I am grateful for this conversation that we shared today. Thank You for sharing Your heart on the subject of my faith. Lord, strengthen me with Your gift of faith, and empower me to trust in You completely for all things. Lord, I am so blessed that You call me Your child, You love me beyond my comprehension, and You know what is best for me and carry it out according to Your good and perfect will. Thank You for your love and faithfulness to all generations of those who love You. In Jesus’ precious name, I pray. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Proverbs 3:5-6, Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him and He will make your paths straight.

Jeremiah 29:11-14, 11“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12Then you will call on Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart. 14I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity.”

Matthew 9:2, Some men brought to Him a paralyzed man, lying on a mat. When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the man, “Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven.”

Matthew 9:22, Jesus turned and saw her, “Take heart, daughter,” He said, “your faith has healed you.” And the woman was healed at that moment.

Matthew 15:28, Then Jesus said to her, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted,” And her daughter was healed at that moment.

Matthew 17:19-20, Then the disciples came to Jesus in private and asked, “Why couldn’t we drive it out?” He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there.’ And it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

Matthew 21:21-22, 21Jesus replied, “Truly I tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done. 22If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.”

Mark 4:37-41, 37A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped.  38Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke Him and said to Him, “Teacher, don’t You care if we drown?” 39He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be Still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. 40He said to His disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” 41They were terrified and asked each other, “Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey Him!”

Mark 5:34, He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering.”

Mark 9:23-24, 23“’If you can’?” said Jesus. “Everything is possible for one who believes.” 24Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”

Mark 10:52, “Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.

Mark 11:22-24, 22“Have faith in God,” Jesus answered. 23“Truly I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. 24Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”

Luke 5:20, When Jesus saw their faith, He said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.”

Luke 7:6-10, 6So Jesus went with them. He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to Him: “Lord, don’t trouble Yourself, for I do not deserve to have You come under my roof. 7That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to You. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. 8For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” 9When Jesus heard this, He was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following Him, He said, “I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.” 10Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well.

Luke 7:48-50, 48Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” 49The other guests began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?” 50Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

Luke 8:48, Then He said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.”

Luke 17:6, He replied, “If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you.”

Luke 17:19, Then He said to him, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”

Acts 3:16, By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through Him that has completed healed him, as you can all see.

Romans 8:28, And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.

Romans 10:17, Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.

1 Corinthians 12:7-11, 7Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and He distributes them to each one, just as He determines.

1 Corinthians 13:2, If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.

2 Corinthians 4:18, So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

2 Corinthians 5:7, For we live by faith, not by sight.

Ephesians 2:8-9, 8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—9not by works, so that no one can boast.

Ephesians 3:16-21, 16I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being, 17so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19and to know His love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. 20Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, 21to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

Hebrews 10:22-23, 22Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful.

Hebrews 11:1-3, 1Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. 2This is what the ancients were commended for. 3By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what I seen was not made out of what was visible.

Hebrews 12:1-3, 1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the cross scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

Hebrews 13:5, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”

James 1:2-8, 12, 2Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. 5If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. 7That person should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8Such a person is double-minded and unstable in all they do….12Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love Him.

1 Peter 5:8-11, 8Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. 10And the God of grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast. 11To Him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 38 – Be Joyful

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 38

 Be Joyful

Dearest Father, You knit me together in the womb, and You know my inmost being. You know that I am not naturally a happy, joyful person. However, I do understand and believe that true joy is not a feeling, instead it is a gift from the Spirit and a confidence I experience in my relationship with You. Your joy is my inner strength (Nehemiah 8:10). My joy is made complete in a close connection and daily conversation with You. Thank You for producing the fruit of joy in my life through the gift of the Holy Spirit within me. Listening to Your voice and reading Your Word both bring me great and lasting joy.

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

My child, you may not feel joyful, however, that is exactly what you are. You experience supernatural joy through the gift of My Spirit. You possess the confidence in knowing that I am your God, I am in control, and you can place your hope and trust in Me and My promises. You have the assurance that I love you and care for you; therefore, I will work all things together for your good (Romans 8:28).

We are not speaking about the happiness that good circumstances produce, but an inner, enduring joy that supersedes the pleasures that the world offers. You may remain joyful in every situation because of your relationship with Jesus Christ who sustains you. That relationship never changes. Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).

I am your strength and shield. When your heart trusts in Me, it leaps for joy (Psalm 28:7). I grant you unending blessings with the joy of My presence (Psalm 21:6). My joy is your strength (Nehemiah 8:10). I turn your crying into dancing and your mourning into joy (Psalm 30:11). Rejoice and be glad that My Spirit gives you unending peace and lasting joy.

My peace and joy are available to you in good times and bad through the gift of the Spirit. You may rejoice even when I don’t deliver you from your troubles, because you know that I will take care of you and provide for all your needs. It is during your trials that you grow the most. You learn to depend on Me and know that I will never leave you or forget about you (Hebrews 13:5).

Joy is also a choice. You may enjoy a positive outlook as you focus on Me rather than your sorrows and difficult circumstances. You know I will walk you through your trials. I am in control of everything. Nothing can separate you from My love (Romans 8:39). Be thankful for what I am doing in you through your challenges. When you are weak, I am your strength (2 Corinthians 12:10). Your joy will be made full. Choose Me and be joyful.

Prayer:

Dear Most Holy Father, I am joyful because of the peace, hope, faith, and confidence I have in knowing You love me and You are in control of all things. There is no one like You, Lord. There is no place I’d rather be than spending time in relationship with You. It brings me great joy to listen to Your voice and read about You in Your Word. Thank You for adopting me as Your child and allowing me to approach You with freedom and confidence (Ephesians 3:12). Lord, magnify my joy by allowing me to clearly hear Your voice and Your words for me in this moment as we sit in conversation. In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Father God, what brings You the most joy? (Record what you hear from Him.)

 

  • Jesus, my Savior, please explain to me the joy You anticipated even in Your darkest hour as stated in Hebrews 12:2, “fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Write everything He brings to your mind right now.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, please sanctify me to become more like Christ and produce in me, the fruit of joy. Show me what that will require. (Journal all your thoughts and ideas.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Lord, in the past, I could really relate to David’s claim in Psalm 30:11-12, “You turned my wailing into dancing; You removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing Your praises and not be silent. Lord my God, I will praise You forever.” I experienced that new joy as You brought me from depression to dancing, and now I cannot keep silent about Your goodness. You have done great things for me and I am filled with joy (Psalm 126:3). I see where the Spirit has produced that fruit of joy in me. I will praise you forever, O Lord, my God. My heart sings and leaps for joy, even in the difficult times, because I put my faith and trust in You to carry me through. I can experience joy in any situation. Thank You for this realization. Thank You for Your mercy and grace, peace and joy, love and provision. Thank You for building a firm foundation of joy in my life and a lasting joy in my heart for You. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Nehemiah 8:10, Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”

Nehemiah 12:43, And on that day they offered great sacrifices, rejoicing because God had given them great joy. The women and children also rejoiced. The sound of rejoicing in Jerusalem could be heard far away.

Psalm 21:6, Surely You have granted him unending blessings and made him glad with the joy of Your presence.

Psalm 28:7, The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and He helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise Him.

Psalm 30:11-12, 11You turned my wailing into dancing; You removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, 12that my heart may sing Your praises and not be silent. Lord my God, I will praise You forever.

Psalm 47:1-2, 1Clap your hands, all you nations; shout to God with cries of joy. 2For the Lord Most High is awesome, the great King over all the earth.

Psalm 51:12, Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.

Psalm 66:1, Shout for joy to God, all the earth!

Psalm 95:1, Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.

Psalm 100:1-2, 1Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. 2Worship the Lord with gladness; come before Him with joyful songs.

Psalm 126:3, The Lord has done great things for us and we are filled with joy.

Proverbs 12:20, Deceit is in the hearts of those who plot evil, but those who promote peace have joy.

Isaiah 12:4-6, 4In that day you will say: “Give praise to the Lord, proclaim His name; make known among the nations what He has done, and proclaim that His name is exalted. 5Sing to the Lord, for He has done glorious things; let this be known to all the world. 6Shout aloud and sing for joy, people of Zion, for great is the Holy One of Israel among you.”

Isaiah 51:11, Those the Lord has rescued will return. They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.

Isaiah 58:13-14, 13“If you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath and from doing as you please on My holy day, if you call the Sabbath a delight and the Lord’s holy day honorable, and if you honor it by not going your own way and not doing as you please or speaking idle words, 14then you will find your joy in the Lord, and I will cause you to ride in triumph on the heights of the land, and to feast on the inheritance of your father Jacob.” For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.

Habakkuk 3:18, yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.

Luke 6:23, “Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their ancestors treated the prophets.”

Luke 10:21, At that time, Jesus, full of joy through the Holy Spirit, said, “I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because You have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children. Yes, Father, for this is what You were pleased to do.”

John 3:29, “The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is Mine, and it is now complete.”

John 15:9-11, 9“As the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you. Now remain in My love. 10If you keep My commands, you will remain in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commands, you will remain in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commands and remain in His love. 11I have told you this so that My joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.”

John 16:23, “So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.”

John 17:13, “I am coming to you now, but I say these things while I am still in the world, so that they may have the full measure of my joy within them.”

Romans 8:28, And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.

Romans 8:35-39, 35Who shall separates us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36As it is written: “For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.” 37No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. 38For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 12:12, Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10, 9But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Galatians 5:22-23, 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Ephesians 3:12, In Him and through faith in Him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.

Philippians 1:3-6, 3I thank my God every time I remember you. 4In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy 5because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, 6being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

Philippians 2:1-2, 1Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from His love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind.

Philippians 4:4, Rejoice in the Lord always, I will say it again: Rejoice!

Colossians 1:9-12, 9For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, 10so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please Him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, 12and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of His holy people in the kingdom of light.

Hebrews 1:9, “You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy.” (Psalm 45:6-7)

Hebrews 12:2, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Hebrews 13:5, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”

Hebrews 13:8, Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

James 1:2-4, 2Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

1 Peter 1:6-9, 6In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

3 John 1:4, I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 37 – Be Armed for Spiritual Battle

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 37 

Be Armed for Spiritual Battle

Lord, sometimes I can really relate to what Paul said in Romans 7:15, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.” Why do I continue to behave and respond in the flesh, when You have given me new life in the Spirit? What is this battle raging within me that keeps me from living the sanctified life You intended for me? Lord, I confess my sin and ask that You would help me fight this battle and win.

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

It is good for you to realize that you are involved in a form of daily spiritual battle between the flesh and the Spirit. Use the Holy Spirit’s power to annihilate the force of sin in your life. Sin has no control over you, unless you allow it to. You are no longer a slave to sin; but Jesus Christ has rescued you and delivered you from all evil (Romans 7:24-25). You are a new creation in Christ Jesus (2 Corinthians 5:17). You have the same power living in you that raised Jesus Christ from the dead (Ephesians 1:19-21). The Holy Spirit is your ally and defender. You may exercise His supernatural strength in all your encounters. I am your Warrior God; I help you fight your battles and win them!

Also understand that you live in a continual spiritual warfare of good vs. evil. Every morning, dress yourself for spiritual battle by putting on the full Armor of God, so that you will be able to stand your ground. Gird your waist with the belt of truth, claiming who you are in Christ; you are supernaturally empowered by the indwelling Holy Spirit. With the helmet of salvation, you put on the mind of Christ, giving you wisdom and discernment with regard to your enemy and his attacks. Secure the breastplate of righteousness in place to protect your heart and defend your birthright as a child of God. Hold up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Stand firm with your feet fitted with the sandals of the gospel of peace. Take up and carry the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God so you can fight against the enemy’s lies with the truth of Scripture and God’s promises. Pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. Always be alert and keep on praying for all God’s people (Ephesians 6:10-18).

Draw on the dynamic power of the Holy Spirit whenever you find yourself in a diabolical battle. Your enemy’s attacks may be subtle. Sometimes you do not even know you are in a fight until you have lost. Remain alert to the devil’s ways, knowing that he will first go after your weakest areas. Our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms (Ephesians 6:12). When you are in a struggle against another human, consider the provocative nature of the evil one. Often times, he is your true opponent. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour (1 Peter 5:8). Do not fall prey to his devious schemes. Be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power (Ephesians 6:10). Live as wise, not as unwise (Ephesians 5:15). Remember that Christ has already defeated Satan, sin, death and the grave. Do not give the devil more power than he is due. Christ has made him powerless. Claim your victory over evil and the evil one, by the shed blood of Jesus on the cross. You are victorious in Jesus Christ. Stand firm and win over evil. You are armed with power from on high to overcome all the power of the enemy (Luke 10;19).  

Prayer:

Dear Jesus, thank You for shedding Your blood on the cross and claiming Your victory over sin, death, and the grave. Thank You for providing me that same victory, as well as, power and authority over all evil and the evil one. I am so grateful that I do not stand alone to battle the forces of evil, but You stand at my side. You are my Warrior God, hiding me in the shadow of Your wings and protecting me from my enemies. Lord, thank You for providing me the Armor of God, so that I may stand firm in battle and remain standing. Thank You for the victory and for the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in me. Please help me be alert to the ways of the enemy and engage in battle with the weapons and authority You provide. Please speak to me now and share Your wisdom with me to better prepare me for anything the enemy throws my way.

Two-way Conversation with God:

  • Loving Father, please expose the broken places in my heart and show me my areas of weakness that the enemy will most certainly go after. (Record all thoughts that come to mind in this moment.)

 

  • Jesus, my Victor, please enlighten me to the truth about my vulnerabilities exposed above. Replace the lies of the enemy with Your truth. Tell me how to defend myself against the enemy attacks in these areas. (Write down all thoughts, ideas, and Scripture verses that come to mind right now.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, please help me be alert to Satan and his ways. Remind me that I struggle not with flesh and blood, but against the evil one. Empower me with the Word of God to fight these attacks. Please give me verses that will combat the enemy when he strikes my weak spots. (Journal all His words and verses He leads you to for this application.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Almighty Lord, thank You for sharing Your wisdom, words, power and protection with me as I fight these daily battles. Lord, I ask that You will daily empower me with Your wisdom and Your Word. Lord, help me always remain alert to the enemy’s ways and recognize each battle I engage in for what it truly is. I claim my victory in You. I claim all power and authority over evil and the evil one, in the name of Jesus Christ, and by His blood. Thank You, Lord. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Luke 10:18-19, 18He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. 19I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you.”

Romans 7:14-25, 14We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. 15I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. 16And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. 17As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. 18For I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. 19For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. 20Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. 21So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.

2 Corinthians 5:17, Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!

Ephesians 1:19-21, 19and His incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20He exerted when He raised Christ from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly realms, 21far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.

Ephesians 5:15-20, 15Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, 16making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. 17Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. 18Do not become drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, 19speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, 20always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Ephesians 6:10-18, 10Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. 11Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, an after you have done everything to stand. 14Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

1 Peter 5:8-11, 8Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. 10And the God of grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast. 11To Him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 36 – Self-Control

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 36

Self-Control

Father, at times my life feels so out of control. You know that one of my biggest challenges is surrendering to You, so that Your Spirit can produce in me the fruit of self-control. I confess that I am very weak and immature in this spiritual discipline in my life. I need to recognize that I can do none of this in my own power, but truly, it is a fruit produced by the power of the Holy Spirit when I acknowledge Him and submit to His power within me. It’s not what I, myself, can or cannot do. It’s what Your Holy Spirit can do through me. Help me to tap in to this power within me, at all times, especially when I feel weak and indulgent. Give me the willpower to yield to Your voice inside me that steers me away from temptation and sin.

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

Jesus liberated you from your sin. He has set you free from the yoke of slavery to sin (Galatians 5:1). Do not give in to the desires of the flesh and do whatever you want (Galatians 5:16-17). Live in step with the Spirit of God, and do not be in conflict with Him. Surrender your sinful nature to God, and instead, He will produce the fruit of righteousness and self-control in your spirit.

Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, trust in Him and He will do this: He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun (Psalm 37:4-6). Delight in Me, and though you may stumble, you will not fall. I will uphold you with My hand (Psalm 37:23-24).

When temptation and sin come knocking at your door, do not open it. Deny yourself and stay safely behind the gate of self-control. Do not allow the thief access to your life. He comes only to steal, kill, and destroy. I have come to give you life to the full (John 10:10). Remain strong in your convictions. Have faith that I can remove all evil strongholds in your life. I will set you free from sin and bondage. I give release to the prisoners and restore sight to the spiritually blind (Isaiah 61:1-3). I bind up the broken places in your heart that cause you to crave that which will not bring you true joy and satisfaction.

Pay attention to My voice within. Claim your victory in the name of Jesus Christ, by His shed blood on the cross. He has already conquered sin on your behalf. You are a new creation. The old has gone, the new is here. Live anew and enjoy your new life of freedom. Walk in the victory of Christ by living in step with His Holy Spirit within you. Maintain your relationship with the Spirit by remaining in continual communication with Him. Do not pretend to be deaf to His voice. Listen and obey; you will receive your reward, and it will be worth so much more than the momentary indulgence and pleasure of disobedience.

Prayer:

Lord, help me be more dependent on you to produce in me the fruit of self-control. I can do none of this in my own strength and power. I have none. My spirit is willing, but my flesh is weak. Strengthen me and empower me to live according to Your good, pleasing, and perfect will. I confess my sin and repent of it as I walk away from the desires of the flesh that try to hold me captive. I claim freedom in the blood of Christ and His death on the cross. He already won the victory and holds the keys to sin, death, and the grave. I am crucified in Christ. I no longer live, but Christ lives in me (Galatians 2:20). He is risen, and I am seated with Him in the heavenly realms. I am a new creation in Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17). Lord, show me the person You see when You look at me. Share your heart with me now as we meet and talk. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Righteous Father, please help me understand the importance of submitting myself to the control and empowerment of the Holy Spirit. (Record all His words and thoughts given to you.)

 

  • Jesus, my Friend, teach me how to remain in step with the Spirit and renounce temptation and sin. Then, give me the strong conviction and desire to do this (Write the ideas and impressions He gives you.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, give me the ability to pay attention to Your voice, and then, obey. Open my ears to hear You, and give me the desire to be obedient. Impress on me the reason I need to submit myself to Your leading and direction. (Journal every word and thought you receive.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

God, thank You for sharing Your heart with me now. Father, help me to not focus on myself and my power, but fully rely on You and Your power to provide me an escape when I am tempted to exercise a lack of self-control. Produce in me the fruit of self-control, so that I may display the righteousness of a life surrendered to You. Lord, I yield my heart and will to You now. I ask you to remove all ungodly pleasures and strongholds in my life. Forgive me when I am weak; when I stumble, do not let me fall. Thank You for your grace and mercy toward me. As the Holy Spirit sanctifies me, teach me to be more grace-filled and merciful toward others. I ask this in the name of Jesus, my Lord. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Psalm 37:4-6, 4Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart. 5Commit your way to the Lord, trust in Him and He will do this: 6He will make your righteous reward shine like the dawn, your vindication like the noonday sun.

Isaiah 61:1-3, 1“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent Me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, 2to proclaim the year of the Lords’ favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, 3and provide for those who grieve in Zion—to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor.

Psalm 37:23-24, The Lord makes firm the steps of the one who delights in Him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the Lord upholds him with His hand.

John 10:10, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”

2 Corinthians 5:17, Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!

Galatians 2:20, I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.

Galatians 5:1, It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

Galatians 5:16-17, 16So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17The flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.

Galatians 5:22-23, 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 35 – Tired & Weary? Rest in Me

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 35

Tired & Weary? Rest in Me

Heavenly Father, why do I wait until I am maxed out physically, emotionally, and spiritually to seek You for renewed strength and increased power. Your Word promises that when I put my hope in You, You will renew my strength. I will soar on wings like eagles, run and not grow weary, walk and not be faint (Isaiah 40:29-31). Help me to seek You at the beginning of my trials, before I run out of fuel, running in my own direction. Lord, I put my faith in You and Your power within Me, to walk me through this challenge. Lord, what do You want me to hear and know today? 

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

Come to Me, weary one. Lay down your burdens at My feet. I will carry your heavy load and exchange it for a lighter load to bear. Put your confidence in Me and find rest for your weary soul. My yoke is easy and My burden is light (Matthew 11:28-30). Surrender everything to Me and rest. Leave your worries and your cares in My capable hands. Allow Me to remove the weight of your responsibilities, and give you My perfect peace.

Hold fast to Me. Depend on Me for your every need. When you are weak, it is then you are strong (2 Corinthian 12:10). Trade in your stress, lay it down, and do not take it up again. Replace it with the confidence and joy of trusting in Me for everything you desire and need. My joy is your strength (Nehemiah 8:10). Take hold of the hope set before you and be encouraged. This hope in Jesus Christ is an anchor for the soul, firm and secure (Hebrews 6:18-19).

When you face trials, consider it pure joy, a testing of your faith. Learn to persevere to the finish to grow in your maturity and faith in Me (James 1:2-4). Be strong and courageous (Joshua 1:9). Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior (Isaiah 43:1-3).

Trust Me completely for everything. I am the Sovereign Lord, in control of all things. Submit yourself to Me. I am your helper. Be not afraid (Hebrews 13:6). I will see you through this difficult time. Cast all your anxiety on Me because I care for you (1 Peter 5:7). I will take care of you and allow your soul a break from the stress you endure.

Rest in Me. Be still and know that I am God (Psalm 46:10). Draw near to Me and I will draw near to you (James 4:8). I do not give you more than you can handle. I give generously the power of My Spirit within you. Look within you and find the strength which reinforces your constitution and foundation in Me. I am here. I desire to daily meet with you in a quiet place where I can effectively communicate the depth of My love and concern for you.

You are My beloved child, whom I love. I do not allow you to be overwhelmed when you depend on Me. Rest in Me, My love. I am your shelter and your strong tower. I will rescue you from your present difficulties in due time. Seek Me in the middle of your storms, and find your respite in Me. I will walk you through the valleys and push the mountains aside that stand in your way. I prepare the path I have marked out for you. This is the good way. Walk in it and you will find rest for your soul (Jeremiah 6:16).

Prayer:

Father, thank You for your comforting, encouraging words and promises. I will find rest for my weary soul when I spend some time alone with You. Jesus, as I draw near to You now, please draw near to Me and quiet me with Your love. Speak to my heart directly from Your heart through the voice of the Holy Spirit within me. Lord, I seek You now, to be still and know that You are God. In the quietness of this secret place, allow me to clearly hear a word from You. In the name of Jesus, my Rescuer and my Refuge, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God:

 1)  Father in heaven, You are my Rock and Refuge. Please share Your heart with me now. How do I get to that place of shelter and rest in You. What do I need to add or remove from my life to best achieve this? (Write what you hear in your thoughts.)

2)  Jesus, my Savior, will You now reveal the desires of Your heart for me? How do I weather this storm and maintain a resilient spirit and faith? (Record His words and ideas for you.)

3)  Holy Spirit, I tune into Your voice and ask that You would remind me of and direct me to pertinent Scripture right now as we speak. Lord, what do You want me to know from Your Word? (Record all words and passages that come to mind just now.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

 Most High, Omnipotent Father, I rejoice in Your sovereign power to demolish all strongholds and restore peace and rest to my soul. Lord, thank You that You walk me through my battles and bring me to a peaceful place of rest in You. Thank You, Great Shepherd, that You carry me, as a lamb in Your arms, away from dangers, foils, and snares, and lead me to the still waters and lush meadows, Your haven of security and well-being. Lord, please prepare and light the way You have marked out for me, and help me run this race with perseverance, fixing my eyes on You only (Hebrews 12:1). In the name of Jesus Christ, I pray. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Joshua 1:9, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

2 Samuel 22:33, It is God who arms me with strength and keeps my way secure.

Nehemiah 8:10, “…the joy of the Lord is your strength.”

Psalm 27:14, Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.

Psalm 28:7, The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and He helps me.

Psalm 29:11, The Lord gives strength to His people; the Lord blesses His people with peace.

Psalm 46:1, God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.

Psalm 46:10-11, 10He says, “Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” 11The Lord almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.

Psalm 84:5, Blessed are those whose strength is in You…

Psalm 105:4, Look to the Lord and His strength; seek His face always.

Psalm 118:14, The Lord is my strength and my defense; He has become my salvation.

Isaiah 40:28-31, 28Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and His understanding no one can fathom. 29He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. 30Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall, 31but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

Isaiah 41:10, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”

Isaiah 43:1-3, 1“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are Mine. 2When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. 3For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior (Isaiah 43:1-3).

Isaiah 50:4, The Sovereign Lord has given me a well-instructed tongue, to know the word that sustains the weary. He wakens me morning by morning, wakens my ear to listen like one being instructed.

Jeremiah 6:16, This is what the Lord says, “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.”

Habakkuk 3:19, The Sovereign Lord is my strength; He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, He enables me to tread on the heights.

Matthew 11:28-30, 28“Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”

Romans 8:26, In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.

2 Corinthians 12:9-10, 9But He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Galatians 6:9, Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

Ephesians 3:16-21, 16I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being, 17so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people; to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. 20Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, 21to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

Ephesians 6:10, Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.

Colossians 1:9-14, 9For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of His will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, 10so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please Him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11being strengthened with all power according to His glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, 12and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of His holy people in the kingdom of light. 13For He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son He loves, 14in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Philippians 4:13, I can do all things through Him who gives me strength.

1 Thessalonians 3:13, May He strengthen you in your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all His holy ones.

2 Thessalonians 3:13, And as for you, brothers and sisters, never tire of doing good.

Hebrews 12:1-3, 1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before Him He endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3Consider Him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

Hebrews 6:18-19, 18God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope set before us may be greatly encouraged. 19We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure.

Hebrews 13:6, So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals to do me?”

James 1:2-4, 2Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, 3because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 4Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.

James 4:8, Come near to God and He will come near to you.

1 Peter 4:11, If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.

1 Peter 5:6-11, 6Humble yourselves, therefore under God’s mighty hand, that He may lift you up in due time. 7Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you. 8Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around looking for someone to devour. 9Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. 10And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast. 11To Him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

 

 

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 34 – Trade Your Anxiety for His Peace

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 34

 Trade Your Anxiety for His Peace

Sovereign Lord, You are in control of all things. I confess and acknowledge this fact, and yet, many times I forget it, giving way to worry and anxiety instead. Lord, I admit that You will provide for my every need and want. I place my faith and trust in You alone to do so. I trade in my anxiety for Your perfect peace. I lay down my worries, because You are the all-powerful, Almighty God, the one and only supreme ruler over everything. You love me and take care of me. How do I maintain a life and mindset free from anxiety and full of Your peace?

 A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

My child, give your cares over to Me. I happily take them on. I am the Sovereign Lord, in control of all things, and I will take care of every need you have. Do not worry about your life: what you will eat and drink, the clothes you will wear. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothes? I know what you need and I will take care of you. Seek first My kingdom and My righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own (Matthew 6:25-34).

Trade in your anxieties and allow Me to replace them with My perfect peace. My peace I give you, not as the world gives. Do not let your heart be troubled and do not be afraid (John 14:27). Leave your worries and your cares at My feet and do not pick them up again. Turn them over to Me. I am the Sovereign Lord, and I will work all things together for the good of those who love Me, who have been called according to My purpose (Romans 8:28). That’s you! I do this for you. 

Lasting peace comes through a relationship with Me. You are My little lamb. I gather you in My arms, carry you close to My heart, and tenderly care for you (Isaiah 40:11). You have access to My peace at all times by the Spirit I have placed in your heart. You have the same power living in you that raised Jesus Christ from the dead (Ephesians 1:19-20). Be confident in My power; trust in Me forever and remain in perfect peace (Isaiah 26:3-4). Remain in Me and find the peace your soul desires.

As you trust completely in Me, be an eager witness to My kindness. Profess your faith and trust until you, yourself, believe it more fully. Tell others of My goodness and grace, love and mercy, faithfulness and peace. You have traded in your anxieties to experience more of My peace. This is monumental. Worry adds nothing to your life; it sucks the life right out of you. But now that you have freed up so much time you used to spend in worry, you may spend more time working for Me, carrying out My plan and purpose for you.

When you place your trust in Me, your cares melt away as the snow on a sunny day. I am the bright Morning Star. I am here to light your way. Fix your mind upon Me, meditate on My Word and My presence, and your troubles will seem to diminish. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to Me. And My peace, which transcends all understanding, will guard your heart and your mind in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:4-7).

Trust Me with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Me, and I will make your paths straight (Proverbs 3:5-6). My timing and purposes are perfect. I am true to My promises and I direct your ways. Cast all your anxiety upon Me because I care for you (1 Peter 5:7). Trade in your heavy load for a lighter one; take My yoke upon you and find rest for your soul (Matthew 11:28-30). Trade in your anxieties for My perfect peace. Make this your daily practice. Resist the temptation to fret and worry; instead claim the peace I freely offer you.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, so many times, I have witnessed Your work behind the scenes orchestrating all things for my good. You deserve all the credit, honor and praise, for your goodness and provision. Worry is the product of not trusting fully in You. Lord, please forgive me of my sin. I confess that I do not trust in You as I should. Lord, show me Your heart right now and make it real to me that You will hold true to Your promises; that I can trust in You completely, and You will not fail me. Help me to hear Your voice and cling to Your promises. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Abba Father, even though I know in my mind that I can experience Your peace, I still resort to worry and anxiety when I feel out of control. Lord, please calm my fears and teach me how to trust completely in You, the Sovereign God who is in control of all things. Share Your heart with me now. (Write down the thoughts He gives you.)

 

  • Prince of Peace, I am so blessed to have You in my life. Thank You for Your peace unlike the world’s, the confidence I have by trusting in You completely. Please tell me more about Your peace that passes all understanding. (Record the words and thoughts you receive from Him.)

 

  • Holy Spirit of God, You are the peace in my heart. Help me remember I have access to Your peace at all times. How may I tap into that lasting peace You so generously provide? (Journal the thoughts He gives you.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Most High God, when I think about it more, it is a relief that I am not really in control of anything; because you are in control of everything. There is a freedom in not being responsible for the outcome of any given situation. You created the heavens and the earth. The wind and waves take their commands from You. You keep me in perfect peace, when I trust in You (Isaiah 26:3). Lord, remind me often of your faithfulness and marvelous deeds. You watch over my life, my coming and going, both now and forevermore (Psalm 121:7-8). I will exalt You and praise Your holy name. I trade in my anxiety for your perfect peace. I cast all my anxiety on You because You care for me (1 Peter 5:7). I am so grateful for Your peace which transcends all my understanding (Philippians 4:7). In the name of Jesus, my Rock and Refuge, I pray. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Psalm 71:16-17, 16I will come to proclaim Your mighty acts, Sovereign Lord; I will proclaim Your righteous deeds, Yours alone. 17Since my youth, God, You have taught me, and to this day I declare Your marvelous deeds.

Psalm 73:28, But as for me, it is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge; I will tell of all Your deeds.

Psalm 121:7-8, 7The Lord will keep you from all harm—He will watch over your life; 8the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.

Proverbs 3:5-6, 5Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 6in all your ways submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight.

Isaiah 25:1, Lord, You are my God; I will exalt You and praise Your name, for in perfect faithfulness You have done wonderful things, things planned long ago.

Isaiah 26:3-4, 3You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in You. 4Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord Himself, is the Rock eternal.

Isaiah 40:10-11, 10See the Sovereign Lord comes with power, and He rules with a mighty arm. See His reward is with Him, and His recompense accompanies Him. 11He tends His flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in His arms and carries them close to His heart, He gently leads those that have young.

Jeremiah 32:17, “Ah, Sovereign Lord, you have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you.”

Ezekiel 12:28, “Therefore say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: None of My words will be delayed any longer; whatever I say will be fulfilled, declares the Sovereign Lord.’”

Daniel 7:27-28, 27“Then the sovereignty, power and greatness of all the kingdoms under heaven will be handed over to the holy people of the Most High. 28His kingdom will be an everlasting kingdom, and all rulers will worship and obey Him.”

Matthew 6:25-34, 25“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body; what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? 28And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will He not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31So do not worry, saying ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Matthew 11:28-30, 28“Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30For My yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

John 14:27, “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.”

Romans 8:28, And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.

Ephesians 1:18-23, 18I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in His holy people, 19and His incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20He exerted when He raised Christ from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly realms, 21far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22And God placed all things under His feet and appointed Him to be head over everything for the church, 23which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills everything in every way.

Philippians 4:4-7, 4Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

1 Peter 5:7, Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

 

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 33 – Blessed to Be a Blessing

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 33

 Blessed to Be a Blessing

Lord, I am so grateful for all that You have blessed me with. How may I be a blessing to others? How might I pay it forward? What is Your plan and purpose for my life. How might I best serve You, bring glory to Your name, and bless Your children in the process?

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

My child, I have blessed you to be a blessing. Just as I blessed Abraham (Genesis 12:2) to be a blessing, I have blessed you to be a benefit to others. I have given you much and much will be required of you (Luke 12:48). I have entrusted you with much, so I ask much more of you. Will you prove faithful? It is more blessed to give than to receive (Acts 20:35). Give generously out of the abundance you have received from Me.

You are blessed when you trust in Me (Psalm 40:4). I give you My strength and peace (Psalm 29:11). You are blessed when I discipline you and teach you. I will never reject you or forsake you. (Psalm 94:12-14). Blessed are you when you revere My name and take delight in My commands (Psalm 112:1). Blessed are the ones who seek Me and find My wisdom and understanding (Proverbs 3:13), who seek My instruction and do not disregard it, who listen to Me and find life in My wisdom (Proverbs 8:33-35). My blessings bring wealth without the pain of striving (Proverbs 10:22).

I bless the poor in spirit, those who mourn, the meek, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, the merciful, the pure in heart, the peacemakers, those who are persecuted because of righteousness, and those insulted because of Me (Matthew 5:3-11). Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial; that person will receive the crown of life I promise to the one who loves Me (James 1:12). I bless all who call on Me (Romans 10:12). You are blessed in all these things.

I do not bless you so that you may keep it to yourself. Freely you have received; now freely pass along your blessings to others (Matthew 10:8). In the spirit of giving, when you give so much as a cup of cold water to one in need, you will show yourself to be Mine and not lose your reward (Matthew 10:42). Be generous with your gifts; give liberally, as you have received generously from Me. This includes the gifts of love and forgiveness.

Do not be stingy in your giving. You have been blessed with much, you must, in turn, contribute much to the well-being of others. Give food to the poor, and spiritual food to the poor in spirit. Share a meal along with the good news of the gospel. Those who give to the poor will lack nothing (Proverbs 28:27). I consider you pure and faultless when you look after the widow and the orphan (James 1:27). This is a cause I feel strongly about.  

Do not keep to yourself what you have learned in strife. Be a blessing to others by sharing your experiences and what I have taught you. A teacher does not withhold the blessing of experiential learning. Let others learn from your mistakes whenever they are willing to listen. Share your story, the story I have written in your life, as well as, My story of love in the Bible. Be prepared at all times to give an account for the hope which you have in Christ Jesus. Share the message of the gospel and offer the prayer of invitation when the Holy Spirit prompts you. Do not shrink back from My requests. Whenever possible, guide others into a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.

You have been blessed so richly because of My mercy and grace. Will you now be a blessing to others? Do not store up for yourself treasures on earth, but give generously and store up treasures in heaven where nothing will destroy them (Matthew 6:19-21).

Prayer:

Dear Jesus, I am blessed by You to be a blessing to others. Help me use the gifts given to me by the Spirit to benefit the body of Christ, as well as, those who do not yet know you as their Savior. Lord Jesus, help me to not be stingy with the gifts you have given me. Let me give generously to others as You have given generously to me. Lord, I ask You to give the voice of Your Spirit to me generously now as we meet for a few moments alone. Lord, allow me to hear Your wisdom and direction for my life. Thank You for the blessing of Your Holy Spirit living in me. I pray that I will always pay attention to Your voice in my thoughts. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Father God, will You now remind me of the blessings I have received from You and how You want me to use those to bless others? (Record all the thoughts that flood your mind right now.)

 

  • Jesus, my Savior, will You bring to my mind the face of someone You want me to bless today. Then, show me, Lord, the best way to show Your love to them. Let me see them through Your eyes, and see the real need that will benefit them most. Then, give me the courage to give generously to bring glory and honor to You. (Write down the ideas He gives you.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, may I always be tuned in to Your promptings and Your whispers as You direct me to be a blessing to others. Help me know the means and the extent You desire me to give. Please show me Your will for me today. How may I best use my gifts and resources to bless another? Please be specific. (Journal His words and promptings.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Almighty God, thank You for sharing Your heart for Your children and ways I might show Your goodness and love to others. I pray that out of my abundance I will always give with a cheerful heart and a generous spirit. Thank You for the ideas You have given me on ways I may show Your love to others while blessing them by meeting their need. Lord Jesus, You were the best example of this. Holy Spirit, continue to transform me into the likeness of Christ. In the name of Jesus Christ, who gave the ultimate gift with His death on the cross, I ask all these things. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Genesis 12:2-3, 2“I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. 3I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.”

Psalm 29:11, The Lord gives strength to His people; the Lord blesses His people with peace.

Psalm 33:12, Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people He chose for His inheritance.

Psalm 40:4, Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, who does not look to the proud, to those who turn aside to false gods.

Psalm 84:4-5, 4Blessed are those who dwell in Your house; they are ever praising You. 5Blessed are those whose strength is in You, whose hearts are set on pilgrimage.

Psalm 89:15-17, 15Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim You, who walk in the light of Your presence, Lord. 16They rejoice in Your name all day long; they celebrate Your righteousness. 17For You are their glory and strength, and by Your favor You exalt our horn.

Psalm 94:12-14, 12Blessed is the one You discipline, Lord, the one You teach from Your law; 13You grant them relief from days of trouble, till a pit is dug for the wicked. 14For the Lord will not reject His people; He will never forsake His inheritance.

Psalm 112:1, Praise the Lord. Blessed are those who fear the Lord, who find great delight in His commands.

Proverbs 3:13-15, 13Blessed are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding, 14for she is more profitable than silver and yields better returns than gold. 15She is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her.

Proverbs 8:33-35, 33“Listen to my instruction and be wise; do not disregard it. 34Blessed are those who listen to me, watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway. 35For those who find me find life and receive favor from the Lord.

Proverbs 10:22, The blessing of the Lord brings wealth, without painful toil for it.

Proverbs 28:20, A faithful person will be richly blessed, but one eager to get rich will not go unpunished.

Proverbs 28:27, Those who give to the poor will lack nothing but those who close their eyes to them receive many curses.

Isaiah 30:18, Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; therefore He will rise up to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for Him!

Matthew 5:3-11, The Beatitudes – He said: 3“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 4Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. 5Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. 6Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. 7Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. 8Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. 9Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. 10Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.”

Matthew 6:19-21, 19“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves to not break in and steal. 21For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

Matthew 10:8, “Freely you have received; freely give.”

Matthew 10:42, “And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones, who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward.”

Luke 6:38, “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”

Luke 12:48, “…From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked. “

Acts 20:35, “In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak, remembering the words of the Lord Jesus Himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”

Romans 10:12, For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on Him, for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

James 1:12, Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love Him.

James 1:27, Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

 

 

 

 

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 32 – Pray Continually

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 32

Pray Continually

Lord, what does it mean to pray continually? Do I need to breathe a prayer all day long to You? How do I work this in to my busy life? What do You require of me and desire from me with regard to prayer?

 A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

My darling child, continual conversational prayer is the main way I communicate with you through the Holy Spirit dwelling in you. I desire that you live your life, busy as it is, in an attitude of prayer, talking to Me and listening to Me throughout your day, every day. That means that as you go about your daily activities, make decisions, and plan for your future, you seek Me in prayer. As you practice this more, eventually it will become your first instinct to speak with Me in every situation, not only in trials and challenges.  

Consult with Me to gain the wisdom you need to make all your decisions, large and small. Ask Me for anything, grandiose or miniscule, and it will be yours when you believe you will have what you ask for (James 1:5-6). I want to be involved in every area of your life. I want you to depend on Me for your wisdom, your direction, and your strength.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to Me, and My peace, which transcends all understanding, will guard your heart and your mind in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:6-7). I will calm your fears and give you the courage for every battle, the wisdom for every circumstance, the strength for every challenge.

You may be filled with joy always (1 Thessalonians 5:16), because of the confidence you have in knowing that I am God, I am in control, and I will provide for you in all situations. You may be free to give thanks in all situations for the same reason (1 Thessalonians 5:18). Prayers of gratitude and thanksgiving shall become a daily devotion for you as well. Tune in to the Spirit of God within you. Remain in step with Him. The fruit of the Spirit is joy (Galatians 5:22-23). Let others see My joy in you, even in the middle of the storms. Joy comes from the confidence you receive when you place your trust in Me through prayer.

It is possible that you can go about your daily routine maintaining an ongoing conversation with Me. Pay attention to the voice of My Holy Spirit inside you. He will direct your thoughts and prick your memory to remind you to seek Me and speak to Me often. You simply need to be more mindful of My continual presence. I am with you at all times. I hope to hear from you in all circumstances. I desire that you depend on Me for everything. Ask Me for anything in My name and I will do it (John 14:14).

Pray to Me about anything and everything. I hear all your cries, and I answer every one in My perfect way and timing. Whether it’s locating a lost set of keys or making the decision to buy a new home, I am here and ready to answer your pleas for recollection and wisdom. I am for you, not against you. I favor you, I do not disregard you. I am at your side, on your side in all situations. I love you, My child. Will you love Me with all your heart by seeking Me first, before you make your plans and decisions?

When you pray frequently, you sustain the intimate fellowship I desire. You will learn to trust Me more when you continually work on developing a more cherished connection with Me daily. You will see that I am compassionate, gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness (Exodus 34:16). You will acknowledge I am your Lord, your warrior, your confidante, and your friend. I am your loving Father, and I desire to hear from you and speak to you more regularly throughout your day. I do not forget you; please do not forget me. I love you.

Prayer:

Dear Lord, I give thanks that You are available to speak with all hours of the day and night. Please help me develop the practice of speaking with you more frequently throughout my day. I want to be dependent on You and honor You by putting You first in my life. I also desire a deeper connection and a more intimate relationship with You. That comes only by communicating with you more regularly. Lord, please speak to me specifically right now about how I can accomplish this goal. Please give me ideas that I can work on with You. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Father in heaven, please speak to me personally about how I might implement this ‘Pray Continually’ attitude. (Record all ideas and thought He gives you.)

 

  • Jesus, share with me how You maintain an attitude of praying continually. How do I accomplish this in my busy life? What do you require of me? (Write the impressions and thoughts you receive.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, please prick my memory all day long to think about communicating with God all day long as I carry out every activity. Help me discern Your voice and Your leading in this area. Please show me how You work in my heart to help me carry out this request. (Journal all you hear in your thoughts right now.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Most High God, thank You that I can approach Your throne of grace (Hebrews 4:16) with the confidence of knowing that I am Your child and You hear every word I speak. Lord, please help me discern Your voice within and hear every word You speak to me also. Lord, I am so grateful that I can experience a close relationship with You. Help me to maintain this two-way conversation with You that is so life changing and exhilarating. It truly is one way to experience the abundant life Jesus came to give me. Thank You that prayer is one of the ways I can experience intimacy with you. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Exodus 34:6-7, 6And He passed in front of Moses, proclaiming “The Lord, the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, 7maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness rebellion and sin.”

Deuteronomy 4:7, What other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the Lord our God is near us whenever we pray to Him?

Psalm 4:1, Answer me when I call to You, my righteous God. Give me relief from my distress; have mercy on me and hear my prayer.

Psalm 6:9, The Lord has heard my cry for mercy; the Lord accepts my prayer.

Psalm 65:2, You who answer prayer, to You all people will come.

Psalm 86:6-7, Hear my prayer, Lord; listen to my cry for mercy. When I am in distress, I call to You, because You answer me.

Proverbs 15:29, The Lord is far from the wicked, but He hears the prayer of the righteous.

Mark 11:24, Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.

John 14:13-14, 13“And I will do whatever you ask in My name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14You may ask Me for anything in My name, and I will do it.”

Galatians 5:22-25, 22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.

Philippians 4:6-7, 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, 16Rejoice always, 17pray continually, 18give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

Hebrews 4:16, Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

James 1:5-6, 5If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. 6But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.

1 Peter 3:12, “For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and His ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.” (also Psalm 34:15-16)

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

 

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 31 – Child of God

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 31

Child of God

Lord, what does it mean that I am Your child? How have I earned that awesome title? To what do I owe the amazing privilege of being a child of God?

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

My child, you have not earned this privilege of being called a child of God. It was given to you when you were created by Me, and when you were reborn again by faith in My Son, Jesus Christ. I knit you together in your mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13). I created you because I love you. I know you by name and you have found favor with me (Exodus 33:13).

Before you were born, I set you apart (Jeremiah 1:5) and called you by name (John 10:3). I have lavished My great love on you; you are My blessed child (1 John 3:1). I desire a more cherished relationship with you on a daily basis. You are My child, and I love to spend time with you alone. Will you put Me first and make Me your highest priority?

In Christ Jesus, you are My child through faith (Galatians 3:26). Your sin separated you from Me. However, I provided the way to reconciliation with Me. When you received Christ as your Savior and believed in the risen Jesus Christ as My Son, I gave you the right to become My child, adopted by Me, through faith in Christ (John 1:12-13).

For My Son, Jesus Christ, has said, “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in My name welcomes Me” (Matthew 18:2-5). Take on the nature of a child of God, a lowly infant who is: dependent, pure, humble, meek, inquisitive, unassuming, obedient, passionate, loving, forgiving, and merciful. Be merciful as I am merciful, love your enemies and do good to them Then your reward will be great and you will be a child of the Most High (Luke 6:35-36).

You no longer need to remain in darkness. I am the light of the world, follow Me and have the light of life! (John 8:12). Believe in the light and walk in the light as children of the light (John 12:35-36). You are the light of the world; do not hide your light or allow the enemy to extinguish it. Let your light shine before others and glorify your Father in heaven (Matthew 5:14-16).

You are a child of God, and therefore, you are led by the Spirit of God. The Spirit you received when you confessed Jesus as your Savior and Lord brought about your adoption to sonship. And by Him you are given the right to cry, “Abba, Father.” The Spirit Himself testifies with your spirit that you are God’s child. Now if you are His child, then you are His heir—heir of God and co-heir with Christ, if indeed you share in His sufferings in order that you may also share in His glory (Romans 8:14-17).

You are human and you disobey Me occasionally. However, because you are My child, whom I love, I discipline you when you need it, in order that you may share in My holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it (Hebrews 12:10-11). Consider yourself a legitimate child of God, when I love you enough to discipline you in the training of the Lord for a future harvest of righteousness and peace.

My blessed one, being a child of God is a privilege. It is an honor and a freedom. Along with any hardships you endure, you will also experience My favor in life, as My child. I will take care of you and provide for you. I will protect you and shield you. I will rescue you and uphold you. I am your loving Father, the Great Shepherd of His sheep. You are My little lamb that I love dearly.

Prayer:

Father in heaven, thank You so much for creating me, loving me, and adopting me as Your child. I am so blessed to be included as your little lamb in Your sheepfold. Thank You for Your favor as a child of the King. Thank You for your protection and provision. I live to bring You all the glory, honor, and praise You are due. Lord, please share more of Your passions with me right now as we sit in conversation with one another. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Father God, will You now speak to Me personally about my privilege and role as Your child. What do You desire from me? (Record all the words and thoughts He gives you now.)

 

  • Jesus, my Savior and Lord, thank You for providing the way back to God, the Father. Thank You for the many blessings my faith in You affords me. Please tell me what my faith in You offers me as God’s heir, co-heir with You. (Write whatever pops into your mind right now as you listen to His voice.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, help me assume the lowly position as a Your child. May I desire to be led by You in everything I do and say. Teach me how to remain in step with You all throughout my days. (Journal all ideas you hear in your thoughts.)

 

Review God’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, thank You for Your love and the ability to hear Your voice in my thoughts. Thank You all for the work You have done in my life to bring me into a saving relationship with the Lord, an abundant life on this earth, and an eternity in heaven with You. I am truly blessed to be called a ‘Child of God,’ and I am eternally grateful for this privilege. Spirit please lead me and guide me through this life, so that I may let my light shine for others to see Your goodness and Your grace bringing all the glory to My Father in heaven. In the name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Exodus 33:12-13, 12…You have said, “I know you by name and you have found favor with me.” 13If you are pleased with me, teach me Your ways so I may know You and continue to find favor with You…

Deuteronomy 14:1, You are the children of the Lord your God.

Psalm 139:13-14, 13For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mothers’ womb. 14I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

Jeremiah 1:5, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart…”

Matthew 5:9, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God.”

Matthew 5:14-16, 14“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”

Matthew 18:2-5, 2He called the little children to Him, and placed the child among them. 3And He said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5And whoever welcomes one such child in My name welcomes Me.”

Matthew 19:14, Jesus said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

Mark 10:13-16, 13People were bringing little children to Jesus for Him to place His hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. 14When Jesus saw this, He was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 15Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” 16And He took the children in His arms, placed His hands on them and blessed them.

Luke 6:35-36, 35But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because He is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. 36Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.

Luke 18:16-17, 16But Jesus called the children to Him and said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 17Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”

John 1:12-13, 12Yet to all who did receive Him, to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God—13children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

John 8:12, When Jesus spoke again to the people, He said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows Me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”

John 10:2-4, 2The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. 3The gatekeeper opens the gate for Him, and the sheep listen to His voice. He calls His own sheep by name and leads them out. 4When He has brought out all His own, He goes on ahead of them, and His sheep follow Him because they know His voice.

John 12:35-36, 35Then Jesus told them, “You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light, before darkness overtakes you. Whoever walk in the dark does not know where they are going. 36Believe in the light while you have the light, so that you may become children of light.”

Romans 8:14-17, 14For those who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. 15The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by Him we cry, “Abba, Father.” 16The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. 17Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in His sufferings in order that we may also share in His glory.

Romans 9:26, and, “In the very place where it was said to them, ‘You are not my people.’ There they will be called ‘children of the living God.’”

Galatians 3:26, So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith.

Hebrews 12:7-11, 7Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as His children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? 8If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. 9Moreoever, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! 10They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in His holiness. 11No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.

1 John 3:1, See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 30 – Loneliness vs. Immanuel

Pursuing the Heart of God – Day 30

Loneliness vs. Immanuel

Jesus, sometimes I feel alone even in a crowded room. But Lord, other times I really am alone, in isolation, away from friends and family. How do I overcome the loneliness I feel when no one else is around? Where are You, Lord? Why don’t I feel Your presence, even though I have the knowledge that You are always with me?

A Message from God’s Heart to Yours:

When you are lonely, remember I am here. I stand with you in your loneliness (2 Timothy 4:17). I am with you always. I am with you in the darkness and obscurity. I am with you when you are lost. I am with you in your devastation. I am with you at the bottom of the pit. I am with you in the storm. In your weakness, I will strengthen you (Philippians 4:13). Seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart (Jeremiah 29:13).

Call on Me any time day or night. I wait patiently for you to meet with Me in the secret place. Turn your eyes upon Me. I am here. I do not leave you alone. I care for you and provide for you. Share your heart with Me, and then listen to My voice. I speak to you in your thoughts. I will sing songs of joy over you. I will quiet you with My love (Zephaniah 3:17). I support you and encourage you, I comfort you and give you My peace.

In your hours of loneliness, find your comfort and encouragement in the pages of My Word. For the Word of God is alive and active (Hebrews 4:12). Open the Scriptures to experience more of Me and My heart. My heart is for you; I am in favor of you. I did not create you to abandon you. I created you to love you and experience intimate relationship with you. In your loneliness, reach out to Me and know Me. When you know Me for who I really am, you will never feel alone. I am with you always (Matthew 28:20). I love you more than you can imagine.

Jesus, My Son, also knew the kind of loneliness you face. As He went to His death on the cross, He felt totally alone. His disciples deserted Him (Matthew 26:36). Jesus momentarily felt the loss of My presence as He hung on the cross and cried out, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46). But He did not lose faith, living in the confidence that His Father would not abandon Him. His faith carried Him through His loneliest times. And Your faith will carry you through this time also.

You are part of My greater plan. At times, My plan may require you to experience times of isolation. Your friends or family may abandon you, but I never will. You have the privilege of serving Me. You are not alone. I am with you. I equip you and prepare you to carry out My will. I will not leave you or forget about you (Joshua 1:5). I AM Immanuel – God with you (Matthew 1:23) at all times. Please do not forget about Me. Call on Me any time. I am always right here, My beloved child.

Prayer:

Dear Lord, thank You for the gift of Your continual presence, through Your Holy Spirit dwelling in my heart. I am never alone. You are always by my side. Help me remember to turn to You more quickly whenever I feel alone or lonely. You patiently wait for me to call on You. You are quick to respond and gracious with Your presence. Help me find the meaning in the isolation as You develop and mature my faith for the works You have prepared in advance for me to carry out. Lord, speak to me now as we connect in conversation. Let me hear Your voice and Your heart for me. In the name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.

Two-way Conversation with God: 

  • Father above, grace me with full knowledge of Your presence today. Please share the depths of Your heart for me. What do You want me to understand right now? (Record all words and thoughts He gives you.)

 

  • Jesus, when You felt abandoned by Your disciples, and even by Your Father on the cross, what carried You through? Please fill me with the knowledge of what to do when I feel most alone. (Write all thoughts and impressions Jesus gives you in this moment.)

 

  • Holy Spirit, let me not forget that You are ‘God with Me’ always. You live in my heart. Lord, describe the kind of relationship You desire with me. How can we make this happen? (Journal all your thoughts and ideas.)

 

Review the Holy Spirit’s thoughts and impressions you’ve sensed and written above. What Scripture comes to mind as you review your notes? Use the concordance of your Bible to look up an impression from God’s Word. Record the verse or passage here. Write all insights and encouragement the Holy Spirit illumines for you as you read God’s Word right now.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, thank You for sharing Your heart and Your love with me today. I have the knowledge that I am never alone, but please help me remember to acknowledge You and Your presence in my heart at all times. I am never alone, and I will not feel alone when I am walking and talking in relationship with You. Thank You for loving me so completely. Thank You for making Yourself available to me 24/7. Thank You for the gift of Your matchless love, Your Son, Your Spirit, Your Word, and Your lifeblood in me. In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, I pray. Amen.

Supporting Scripture:

Joshua 1:5, “No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you or forsake you.”

Psalm 16:9-11, Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices; my body also will rest secure, because You will not abandon me to the realm of the dead, or will You let Your faithful one see decay. You make known to me the path of life; You will fill me with joy in Your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

Psalm 68:4-6, 4Sing to God, sing in praise of His name, extol Him who rides on the clouds; rejoice before Him—His name is the Lord.5A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows is God in His holy dwelling. 6God sets the lonely in families, He leads out the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land.

Psalm 89:15, Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim You, who walk in the light of Your presence Lord.

Psalm 139:1-11, 1You have searched me, Lord, and You know me. 2You know when I sit and when I rise; You perceive my thoughts from afar. 3You discern my going out and my lying down; You are familiar with all my ways. 4Before a word is on my tongue You, Lord, know it completely. 5You hem me in behind and before, and You lay Your hand upon me. 6Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain. 7Where can I go from Your Spirit? Where can I flee from Your presence? 8If I go up to the heavens, You are there; if I make my bed in the depths, You are there. 9If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, 10even there Your hand will guide me, Your right hand will hold me fast.

Proverbs 18:24, A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a Friend who sticks closer than a brother.

Jeremiah 29:11-13, 11“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12Then you will call on Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. 13You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart.”

Zephaniah 3:17, “The Lord your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”

Matthew 1:23, “The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call Him Immanuel” (which means “God with us).

Matthew 26:56, “But this has all taken place that the writings of the prophets might be fulfilled.” Then all the disciples deserted Him and fled.

Matthew 27:46, About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” (which means “My God, My God, why have You forsaken me?”

Matthew 28:20, “…and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”

Luke 5:16, But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.

Acts 2:28, “You have made known to me the paths of life; You will fill me with joy in Your presence.”

Philippians 4:13, I can do all this through Him who gives me strength.

2 Timothy 4:16-18, 16At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone deserted me. May it not be held against them. 17But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength, so that through me the message might be fully proclaimed and all the Gentiles might hear it. And I was delivered from the lion’s mouth. The 18Lord will rescue me from every evil attack and will bring me safely to His heavenly kingdom. To Him be glory for ever and ever.

Hebrews 4:12-13, For the Word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.

Copyright © Sindy Nagel. All Rights Reserved