Hope 4 2day

Your Daily Dose of Encouragement

You Need to Put Me First — August 22, 2017

You Need to Put Me First

You need to put Me first. You are too busy for Me, and your busyness will be your destruction if you do not make Me your first priority again. It saddens me how you try to count your 2-second rushed prayer as sufficient time spent with Me, when you willingly work 8, sometimes 12 hours a day. All I want is to spend time with you, My child. Turn to Me. When you come to Me, you find renewed strength to deal with everything that is on your plate. You can’t do this by yourself. You aren’t strong enough, Daughter. Let Me help you. Let Me be your strength. Let Me be your guide.  I know that you are used to doing life alone or without much help, but those days are over. I am introducing you to a better, easier way: Me. I am your guide. I am your peace. I am your wisdom. I am everything that you need. Just let me help you. As badly as I want to help you, I can’t..I won’t force myself on you, but the sooner you allow Me to help you, the sooner you’ll experience and live in my peace. Give Me My rightful place on the throne of your heart again, Daughter. I desire so much for you, but you are withholding My strong hand because you have shifted your focus from Me to what’s around you and even to your own strength. If you would rather Me to not help you,that’s fine because I gave you the power to choose, but I would love for you to make the right choice. Choose Me today, beloved. Choose me and deny the things that you put before Me. Once you do that, I’ll begin to strengthen you and elevate you to the place that I desire you to be in. Don’t be nervous about what is expected of you in that place. Just know that I am here with you every step of the way. My child, putting Me first may seem difficult at first, but only because you are still desiring the world and the very thing that you need to let go. Holding on isn’t always the best thing to do. It may be hard to let go, but holding on to something I tell you to let go of makes it harder for you to receive of Me and for you to trust Me. Let it go. Trust Me.  Have I ever fallen short of My delivery? No, and I will not begin with you. You are My most prized creation, Daughter, and I plan to give you the absolute best I have, but you have to submit to My way, My teaching, My voice. Listen as I speak to you, as I guide you. I promise, I’m guiding down the path of life and righteousness. I am leading you to the fulfillment of My purpose for your life. All you have to do is put Me first. Remember,there is a reward in obedience. I love you now and forever. You are Mine always. ♥

 

Be Honest with Yourself — August 18, 2017

Be Honest with Yourself

 “And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.”

Luke 18:13

You have to be honest with yourself. If you broke something, but hide it from the person it belonged to, that’s no good. If you hurt someone’s feelings but try to act as if you didn’t know that your words or actions hurt them, that isn’t good. And if you did wrong by God but cover it up for other’s sake, you’re causing more harm than good. The first step in  growth is to admit or be honest. If you aren’t honest about the issue at hand, you won’t ever change. Covering it up doesn’t make it better. Only when you own up to your mistake will you be in a position to receive the help and grace that you need.

I think about how honest I am with God. I recognized that  I’m more honest at times than others. In the times that I’m not honest with God, I realize that it’s because of shame that I feel from my actions or some part of myself that has yet been made like Christ. I feel disappointed that I behave/thought/felt that way at this point in my spiritual life, but the fact is that I am still being molded by God, and won’t have it all together all at once. I now realize that it’s a transformation process. I say that to say this: it’s okay to admit when you’re wrong. You don’t have to try to save face with anyone, especially not with God. As I’ve said before, God knows you. Inside and out. He knows every thought you think and your way of processing. He knows every good thing about you and ever bitter thing. God takes all of you- just as you are- and He transforms you into what you need to be for Him. He can turn your bitter waters into sweet waters, IF you allow Him to.

 

God isn’t looking for us to get it right all of the time, but He is expecting us to be honest with Him so that He can effectively use us and make us more like Him. If we are acting like the Pharisees, we feel that we don’t need God because we aren’t as bad as those around us, when in reality, we’re worse! We should be like the publican who recognized his faults before God His Helper. Don’t cast the blame on someone else when you are the one responsible. Don’t be deceived by the devil. We ALL fall short of God’s glory( Romans 3:23), but we all can be redeemed by the hand of the Lord if we would simply be honest with God and ourselves.

 

The truth hurts sometimes, but the bible said that “ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free”. It may be a hard pill to swallow, but know that once’s the truth has been spoken from your heart, you’ve made space available for God to come in and work things out in you. God is here to help you and heal you, not hinder you.

 

My prayer is that God helps us all be honest with ourselves so that we can be honest with Him. I pray that God helps us to see the truth of our hearts, and to allow God the space and time to work on us. Though the truth may be hard, I pray that God helps us get through it with His help. I believe that God wants to help us. The question is who will let Him?

I encourage you to take a moment today and pray with me really quickly:

God, I haven’t been completely honest with You, but I want to start today.  Forgive me for not being truthful with You. Help me to be transparent with You always, and not try to hide anything from You because You see all and You know all. Forgive me for hiding my heart from You. You know all about what’s in my heart, but You still choose to love me. Thank You for loving me still. Lord, I give You the space to change my heart, to take away all of the things I’m used to that have kept me from You. I surrender my whole heart to You. I ask that You give me a heart for what You care about, a heart for the things that touch Yours. Make my heart tender for You, Jesus. I desire to please only You. Help me to commit my heart to You, Lord. Thank You for helping me. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

 

It’s not over for you, beloved. Your Helper is coming to you!
God bless you! ♥

Do You Mind Waiting On God? — August 11, 2017

Do You Mind Waiting On God?

 And it came to pass, that, when Jesus was returned, the people gladly received him: for they were all waiting for him.

Luke 8:40

 

Waiting can be tough, right? I mean, you just want one thingAnd God is able to do anything….right? We don’t like it when God tells us to wait because we want whatever it is that we want in that very instant, and not a moment later. What if you knew what God has for you was one hundred times better than what you were asking for? Would you wait for it? What if it met every expectation, in fact, exceeded everything you imagined it to be? Would you still want to wait for it? What if you KNEW that it was the absolute BEST that God could do, and He gave His very best to you? It’d make you feel extra special? Loved in the best way possible, right? Would you still be willing to wait for it?

All too often, we rush God’s process because we have our time frame in mind, an invisible deadline for that answered prayer, which limits God in so many ways. We try to force God to give us what we want and for Him to give us His best, all within the matter of minutes( figuratively). Dearest heart, it doesn’t work like that. When we pray, we have to believe that God hears us, but we also have to allow and trust God to answer that prayer in His timing, not ours. God’s timing is not ours, and it will never be.

It can be hard to wait when we know that God has the capacity to do anything and everything by simply thinking of it. I believe that God makes us to wait for something or an answer to our prayer to do a work in us. We don’t know our hearts as God does, nor what lies ahead, so we have to trust that God has a great reason to make us wait.

The process of waiting isn’t a time of idleness, but a time of preparation on God’s end  and ours. That time is allowing God to strengthen you to stand firm against whatever you’re facing today and preparing you for what is to come. God also uses that time to show us our true selves: lack of patience, selfishness, jealousy, frustration and many other things that may dwell within us that we didn’t know was there. In showing us those things about ourselves, God uses that time to highlight the reality that our need of Him is greater than we thought. God refines us in that time, and while He’s refining us, He’s preparing the answer to that prayer we brought before Him. When it’s all said and done, when God returns, He knocks our socks off! Even though it may have seemed like God has walked away and forgot about our request, I promise He hasn’t. He’s heard all we asked, and has worked so diligently to deliver. When God comes back to your request, stand with joy, expectation and excitement, knowing that He has been at work for you! Be open to receive whatever it is that He presents to you, for you’ll see that it was well worth the wait! ♥

 

Pray this simple prayer today: Lord, as You are having me to wait, help me to trust that You haven’t forgotten about me. Help me to hold on to my faith in You, and to be fully open to receive whatever it is that You present to me. I surrender to You today, Lord. Your will, Your time. Not mine.  Thank you for this time of preparation. Thank you for every lesson You allow me to learn as I wait.  In Jesus’ name, Amen. ♥

 

 

 

 

God bless you!

 

 

 

Declare Your Justification! — August 9, 2017

Declare Your Justification!

“Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies.”

Romans 8:33

Has God ever sent you a word of encouragement, but you didn’t believe because you saw the reality in front of you instead of what God said? Have you ever rejected what God said about you because what you see didn’t align with what was said? I know I have. And you know what? When we do that, we show our lack of faith in God and in His confidence that He has in us. Sometimes I wonder why I do that: put my own view over God’s when it comes to me. I believe that we do that because we don’t see what God sees when He sees us. While we see through a lens of condemnation, God sees us through a lens of justification. I think we can sometimes combine the two because we try to justify that we are unworthy, unrighteous and nonredeemable because of condemnation. As we read the word, we find that God does not give us fear, nor does He condemn us( 2 Timothy 1:7; 1 John 4:18[NIV]; Romans 8:1). Condemnation comes from the enemy as a ploy to keep us from walking in faith and being who God says we are.

“Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God’s elect? It is God that justifieth”. This means that NO ONE has the right to condemn you– not even you! Yes ,you know you’ve messed up and have fallen, but Jesus knows that as well… and He STILL CHOSE YOU! So, if God chooses you, what gives you the power to overrule God’s verdict? Remember, God declares what’s right (Isaiah 45:19)!

When we mess up, make a bad decision or fall short, the enemy will constantly bring those things before us to keep us from walking in the truth of God’s declaration for our lives. Revelation 12:10,11 says that the accuser of the brethren (the devil) is before God day and night highlighting our faults. However, it tells us that we OVERCOME by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony! There’s power in the words we speak, right( Proverbs 18:21) ? So we have to DECLARE the word of God to reinstate God’s truth over our lives. We can’t allow the enemy to dictate our life, our being, or our purpose because he can’t speak any truth! We have to search the word and learn what God says about us and let that become our new reality and our new standard.!

Today, I want to challenge you to challenge the condemnation of the enemy by declaring a few things:

  • that you are an overcomer by the blood of the Lamb and the word of your testimony ( Revelation 12:11- share God’s victory in your life over the enemy with someone today)
  • Declare that you are the righteousness of God( you are approved of God- 2 Corinthians 5:21)
  • Declare that you have power over the enemy( Luke 10:19)
  • Declare that you are beautiful in God’s sight( Song of Solomon 4, especially v. 8)
  • Declare that your past is gone and you are new in Christ( 2 Corinthians 5:17)

 

The only way to overcome  the lies, is to learn the truth!

 

“And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”- John 8:32

 

God bless you! ♥

The forces of Life — August 6, 2017

The forces of Life

 “The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.” – John 3:8

Sometimes things happen in life that are completely opposite of what we desire. And many times it’s frustrating for us because it keeps happening! This was me recently: frustrated and full of various emotions because I felt like I was forced to do something instead of doing it on my own and in my own timing. The truth of the matter is that I would have never moved from where I was if I hadn’t been forced from that. To be transparent, I have a difficult time letting go and moving from one chapter to the next. I believe that because God knows me as well as He does, He recognizes that and has to be that final push force that gives me no choice but to move from where I am, because if not, He knows that I’d never leave and would probably cause more harm than good to myself. 

I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s like that, and I want to let you know that you aren’t alone in that. However, we have to eventually learn to sever ties, close doors and walk away from people, things or situation sooner rather than later because it becomes costly to leave the longer we wait. The longer we wait to move from that place, the more emveddded fear is into our hearts and minds, and our faith in God begins to falter. We don’t want to falter so we ask God to help us to move, but we expect it to be done how we imagine it. On the contrary my dear! God knows exactly what needs to happen to get us moving toward destiny again instead of being stagnant. 

If you were “forced” from a place/ person or thing, REJOICE!! Rejoice in knowing that you are now moving toward your destiny again, en route to fulfilling God’s purpose for your life! Remember: “and we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose”! You are God’s chosen, and sometimes He has to be the driving force to keep us moving toward purpose and destiny!

Don’t fight the forces of life because they are carrying you to destiny!
God bless you! ♥️

Preparation — July 31, 2017

Preparation

“And the maiden pleased him, and she obtained kindness of him; and he speedily gave her her things for purification, with such things as belonged to her, and seven maidens, which were meet to be given her,….  (for so were the days of their purifications accomplished, to wit, six months with oil of myrrh, and six months with sweet odours, and with other things for the purifying of the women;)”

Esther 2:9,12

We all have hopes, dreams and different aspirations. Though we understand that those things won’t come to pass overnight, we still somehow manage to get frustrated during the process of living out that dream or aspiration. We want what we desire, and we want it NOW! Trust me, I know, because I still do that myself for some things. It gets difficult to keep “waiting” until that change comes, but know that it truly isn’t a waste of time. See, you’re not just waiting; you are PREPARING and are being prepared for what you ask for.

Granted, some things in life that happen are NOT what we ask for, but God knows it is needed for us and those around us. Esther, for example, didn’t sit around hoping, dreaming or praying to save her people one day, but the entire duration of her life was preparing her to be used mightily by God. During the time of preparation, it isn’t always rose bushes and sunshine. There are many days/nights that are filled with endless questions, concerns and even doubt. I would imagine that during Esther’s time of preparation to meet with the king she was nervous, concerned and unsure about how things would turnout. Though those things arise, we must remember that where we are in route to that desire, dream or aspiration is being used by God to prepare us for what we asked for according to His purposeful plan for our lives so that we will be ready to receive when God releases it.

Whether you have or are asking God to prepare you to be a wife, mother, of certain professional status or even for a new job, know that you won’t be given something prematurely. If so, you may mismanage it once it’s received. It takes time to build an appreciation and care for things. I know that it is difficult, but trust God to be with you during this time of preparation. Think of the countless blessings that God has given you along the way and even those to come. Most importantly, be reminded daily of the greatest blessing about where you are: it allows you to become closer to Jesus than you once was.

No matter how long your time of preparation is, know that every second of it is indeed necessary for where God is taking you and what He has awaiting you. My prayer is that God helps us to appreciate the process because it isn’t just something to go through, but it is something that we are allowed to GROW through. I pray that God makes our heart tender toward Him in that time, and that He allows us to be strengthened by His Spirit.I pray that we learn to trust God’s judgement for our lives in all things. I pray that while we are in preparation, God opens our eyes to see His hand working all things together for our good regarding His promise. I also pray that God helps us to always ALWAYS remember that He has not forgotten about us, and that He hears every prayer that we lift to Him.

 

Take time to prepare!
God bless you! ♥

In His Timing — July 12, 2017

In His Timing

“He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.”

Ecclesiastes 3:11

 

I just want to encourage you today to not get discouraged in your season of waiting. Know that God sees you, hears your every word( spoken and unspoken) and He is faithful to meet your need and grant your desires in His timing. I know that it is not always easy trusting God in our time of waiting, but don’t mistake where you are waiting to be your final destination. Know that God will answer that prayer, open/close that door, and move on your behalf.. but in His timing! We may feel that we are ready for something we are asking God for, but He knows us far better than we know ourselves, and He knows when the right time is to move you into that next blessing in your life.

We sometimes get antsy when we see God moving in the lives of those around us, and wonder why God has yet to move for us. Would you like to know something? He is! He is moving and working for you, even though you may not see it or feel it. God is preparing that blessing for you and He is also preparing you for it! So trust where God has you now, and know that the end result of God’s work is always beautiful!

I pray that we understand that God’s timing is best for us, even when we are asking for things sooner than He intends to release them to us. I pray that we trust God’s timing and not persist to have things prematurely. I pray that we don’t grow weary in our time of waiting and know that God is working, even in the silence. I also pray that God strengthens our hearts during this season, so that we may be able to stand tall when God releases His glory in our lives in Jesus name! Don’t be drawn away by lust of the flesh, lust of the eye or the pride of life as we are waiting on the Lord.
God is beautifying you with where you are! ♥

 

God bless you! ♥

Your Hidden Heart — July 9, 2017

Your Hidden Heart

“A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.”

Ezekiel 36:26

As we experience life, we all have hurts, pains and heartaches that leave scars. Overtime, the scars become larger and leave us with deeper, untreated wounds due to more life pain. The untreated scars eventually cause our hearts to become hidden behind the many layers of pain that has not been dealt with, just covered up. In an effort to protect ourselves, we build up this resistance to those around us and block people out– including God.

One way we block out those around us is by detaching yourself from certain emotions and feelings due to unsuccessful past experiences. If “protected” for too long, our hearts are encased in this lifeless, emotionless state that causes us to miss out on the healing that we so desperately need. We soon forget what our true heart looks like. When we reach that point, we need God to intervene and tell us who, what, when and why have we guarded our hearts like this, and what were we expecting that was not fulfilled.

I’ve recently began praying for God to show me why I felt a certain way about someone I once was close to, and He revealed to me that it was because I held un forgiveness in my heart toward them. I was so surprised because I thought that my heart was free of things like un forgiveness since I make every effort to live a life representative of Christ in every way. I began writing, and in that I began to understand why I held that emotion for so long. It was during that process that I began to see my heart for what God created it to be, and not what was seen through the lens of hurt and pain.
I want to encourage you that although you may have had many unpleasant life experiences that have caused your heart to become stacked with scar tissue, know that’s not who you truly are. You are not the problem. The problem is receiving the healing that God has for your heart and soul. Know that the heart God has given you is waiting to be unveiled from under the pain.

 

I pray that we seek God about what life experiences have scarred our hearts and that we ask God to help us heal from those scars. I pray that we not only ask God to heal us, but that we give God the space and authority to search, reveal and heal those pains in our heart, no matter how uncomfortable it may be. I pray that once God heals us that we guard our hearts from the enemy and his schemes to steal our healing in Jesus name!

 

Let God in to your heart today, and let Him reveal the true heart that He has given you! ❤

 

God bless you! ❤

 

Consistency and Committment  — July 7, 2017

Consistency and Committment 

    “And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day. ” –Luke 2:37

Committment– to be dedicated to a cause or action, or pledge.

Consistent– to be unchanging in nature, standard or effect over time. 

As followers of Christ we make a committment to follow Him in all things, no matter what happens during our journey.  Many times, when a life change comes, our committment is put to the test because we don’t always understand the timing or reason for that life change. Sometimes our first response isn’t faith; sometimes its fear. And in those times, we must remember our pledge to the Lord. We must not let our allegiance to God waiver just because there is turbulence. 

When I read about the widow woman who constantly fasted and prayed, I am so amazed, inspired and encouraged because despite the various changes of life, she remained faithful to the Lord. She lost her husband, the possible bread winner for the family. She lost her best friend. Everything that a husband is supposed to be for a wife- assuming he was a good one- she lost. Though she lost him, she never lost her dedication to the Lord! Wow!  Can you imagine what our relationship with God would be like if we remained that faithfully committed? Or what our lives would be like if we remained as consistent as she did? We’d experience God in ways that we would only imagine! 
My prayer is that we remain steadfast and unmovable when life begins to happen for us. I pray that God anchors us in our faith and lets us rest assured that He is everything that we could ever want and need. I pray that we don’t lose our dedication or desire to stay faithful to God even when He doesn’t respond or react when we want Him know. I pray that we remain consistent with God even when things around us or within us change. I pray that we remember that He is Lord, that His eyes are upon all, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. Let us remember that our pursuit is not in vain ❤️
God bless you! 

There’s Power in Planning — July 5, 2017

There’s Power in Planning

“And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it.”

Habakkuk 2:2

“A dream written down with a date becomes a goal. A goal broken down into steps becomes a plan. A plan backed by action makes your dreams come true”. I’m sure many of us have heard this quote before. If not, may I introduce you to this wonderful tool that is helpful,  both for the natural and spiritual life.

Almost every one of us have a desire to be at a certain place in life, and maybe by a certain time. The real question is: how? How will we make these things happen? Your first answer may be to pray and seek God. While that is essentially the first step, the next “first” step is for us to have a plan. We can’t look to God to do all of the work, especially when He has equipped us to do some things ourselves. Our prayers and pursuit of God for those desires is what guides and fortifies us, but we must give God something to work with.

You may have a mental plan on how to achieve this goal, but the various tasks of life will quickly push that plan aside and eventually out of your mind. The best way to avoid losing the vision is to write it down! By writing it down, you hold yourself accountable to what you have said you’d like and what you plan to do to acquire that. After we have a plan written down, we should then come to God to ask for His wisdom and guidance on how to begin this pursuit. We must not make the mistake of only consulting God after we have made our plans; we must consult God even in our planning because I believe that He gives us certain desires according to the purpose that He has given us. By coming to God with our plan, we show reverence to Him and His authority by ensuring that our plan aligns with His. If we faithfully bring our plans to God, He will reveal every motive, expose every danger and shed light on all weaknesses of that plan, all done out of love.

Know that the enemy will come to distract you from sticking to your plan, and know that your commitment will be tested, but also know that if God gave you the desire, then He will provide the means for it to come to pass according to His will. It’s up to you to decide how you maneuver those provisions from the Lord.

My prayer for today is that God causes us to seek Him for our future, what pleases His heart and how our personal desires align with that. I pray that God causes us to write as much as possible regarding those desires, and that we filter our thoughts through prayer and faith. I also pray that after the vision is written, that God helps us to be committed to the fulfillment of that plan for the advancement of His kingdom so that He may be glorified in the earth. I pray that in all things, we are lead by faith, no longer fear!
Challenge: Take some time and ask God about your purpose today( What is purpose and what that looks like for your life). After doing so, ask God to help you to write everything you can think of regarding that purpose, and to give you strategies on how to fulfill that. If you don’t hear anything today, that’s okay. Keep asking! We serve the God who has all answers, so if you’ll ask, He’ll answer ♥

God bless you! ♥