Tag Archives: Encouragement

Reflecting on Your Life and Service

How have you taken the time to reflect on your lives and walk with Christ? We need to consider the direction we are headed. I need to do this in my life, too. Remember how I have lived and loved Christ. While I may lack strength at times, I have chosen to serve Him.

Such reflection will keep us encouraged and energized in our faith. We have been given the amazing opportunity to come and experience our Mighty God through His Gospel! Jesus Christ, our Lord, and Savior, has arrived and will save us. What is stopping us from accepting Him and surrendering our lives?

23Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the LORD, not for human masters, 24since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the LORD as a reward. It is the LORD Christ you are serving.

Colossians 3:23-24, NIV

Image: Cristian Newman (Unsplash)

Trust Habits #4

praying woman inside church

A trust habit is anything that causes us to have greater intimacy and trust in our Lord Jesus Christ.

We will talk a bit more about prayer, as we go through this series. But, I wanted to start today with a prayer journal habit.

Prayer is the vehicle in which we will see our trust in the Lord grow the deepest.

“And we are confident that He hears us whenever we ask for anything that pleases Him (1 John 5:14, NLT).”

My Prayer Journal Routine –

As I begun this week, I knew the need for a different approach. It was the perfect opportunity to develop a new routine to stick to “most of the time”.

So when I headed out to the Dollar Tree with my mom, I knew I wanted to “splurge” on one of their notebooks. The reason why I wanted to go out and purchase one is this:

Just as I was intentionally purchasing this prayer journal, I would just as intentionally jot down my prayers.

At the time of writing this, I have successfully used it for six days – which is a victory.


Here are four reasons I will continue to prayer journal.


#1: Intentional

Using a specific journal for our prayers – causes us to intentionally turn to the Lord and sharing our needs with Him. I am bringing not only my needs, but the needs of loved ones.

As I continue to write down my prayers, I am noticing that I am trusting the Lord more – to handle everything!

#2: More Prayerful

When I wake up early in the morning, I am more willing to spend that time in prayer. Talking to my Sweet Savior about loved ones and situations on my heavy heart. The time is becoming a treasure and well spent.

#3: Growth

Having a prayer journal will allow me to see how my prayers have grown. Not only will I see how God has faithfully answered them, I will be able to see the development of my prayer life. Just as a baby goes through stages from holding up its head, sitting up, and crawling, I will be able to take note of how the Lord has grown me in my prayer life.

I will be able to see how I have ran to God in my times of need.

#4: Encouragement

We can find much encouragement through the prayers of others. Our Savior Jesus Christ. Apostle Paul. BarlowGirl. Countless others. Their prayers influenced many.

May we grow deeply in our trusting Jesus, as we write out our prayers.

16 I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit.17 Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. – Eph. 3:16-17

Assignment: For seven days, write down a simple prayer each day. Give God access to your heart. What is weighing heavy on your spirit? Share it with our Mighty God, even if it means letting walls come down.

Featured Image: Naassom Azevedo of Unsplash.

In Him,
Stacey


Trust Habits #1

“So be very careful how you live, not being like those with no understanding, but live honorably with true wisdom, for we are living in evil times. Take full advantage of every day as you spend your life for His purpose.”

Eph. 5:15-16, TPT

This Scripture used to intimidate me. “Make the most of every opportunity.” But, I am chronically ill. How do I live and make the most of my opportunities, given my limitations?

There’s something I neglect: Our great God is in control. He is the One enabling us – to make the most of every single opportunity. Even though I live with daily trials, I can cultivate “trust habits”.

Developing Trust and Intimacy

Trust habits can be defined as practices which encourage intimacy and deeper trust in our Lord Jesus. As I previously mentioned, I have certain trust habits designed to help me grow in my relationship with the Lord. I haven’t officially “made it” in case you were wondering, but my faith in Christ is growing.

In order to live out this Scripture, I need to cultivate “Trust Habits” – these are the regular, daily, activities in my day that will continually reinforce a deep intimacy and trust in our Lord. Despite our trials, we can have our faith deepen. Trust Habits help me draw near and truly trust our Lord Jesus Christ as my Father, Savior, Creator, and Lord over all things.

Habits That Lead

There are many different habits we could cultivate in our lives. Some lead us nearer to our Lord Jesus Christ, while others cause us to run for the opposite direction – away from our Risen Lord. We need to become intentional about our lives, and how we live out these days the Lord has given us.

A habit is something we can implement into our day.

There are many ways, in which we can create space for our Lord to reign over our days. We can build habits into our days, which deepen the trust we have firmly placed in our Lord Jesus Christ.

What are some of these “Trust Habits”?

  • Reading our Bible.
  • Praying.
  • Fellowship with the Holy Spirit and other believers.
  • Joining in worshipping God in song.
  • Scripture memorization.
  • Surrendering: Giving everything to my Heavenly Father.
  • . . . & much more.

A Word of Encouragement

Dear friend, I know trials cause us to feel as though our faith is shrinking. I know, it can seem as though our opportunities shrink versus growing. I want to encourage you to keep drawing near to our Lord Jesus. Keep seeking ways to implement these habits, which will cause your faith in Jesus Christ to grow. Our time in the Word of God or prayer may seem so small, but it is about drawing nearer to the Lord.

Each step we take to draw nearer to the Lord – is a step we need to take. Don’t give up. As you face this difficult season, allow your trust in Jesus to become raw, real, and stretched.

Featured image by Aaron Burden of Unsplash.

Signature

Fog of Depression

I have greatly struggled with depression this past month. I am not sure it could be narrowed down to any one specific factor. There are many things, which can cause one’s mental illness to “flare up”. When undergoing trials, the holidays can become a difficult season. The holidays can bring up many emotions, regardless of life circumstances.

Wherever you are, I see you. As I face my own struggles, I see you. I see you and I want to encourage each of you, so you don’t go through this time feeling isolated or alone.


Depression can become quite thick around this time of year. I don’t know where you are, but I want to encourage you to press on. All the while, I am trying to encourage my own self to press on.

How so? For myself, I just finished reading the book of Genesis. I seem to do well pressing on in my Bible reading right now. My prayer life is where I seriously need to see growth.

In Genesis 22, God instructed Abraham to give his son Isaac in sacrificial worship. His precious, long-awaited, son needed to be fully given to God. But, would Abraham trust God… love God, even here? Will you and I surrender?


‘Sometime later God tested Abraham. He said to him, “Abraham!” “Here I am,” he replied. Then God said, “Take your son, your only son, whom you love—Isaac—and go to the region of Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on a mountain I will show you.

. . . ”The angel of the Lord called to Abraham from heaven a second time and said, “I swear by myself, declares the Lord, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, I will surely bless you . . . because you have obeyed me.”’

~ See Genesis 22


As I am reminded of Abraham’s great act of surrender, I know, there are many things I need to surrender to the Lord Jesus in my own life. When I willfully give my circumstances to our great God, He will take care of them. I need to give God each day and keep trying to dig into His Word – despite the trials I face. I have been talking a lot about that, in my daily Bible checkup time on Instagram | Facebook.

My goal behind the daily Bible checkup time is: to help each of us to fight back in our battles and read our Bible’s (and pray) – even when it is hard.

But they delight in the law of the Lord,
    meditating on it day and night.
3They are like trees planted along the riverbank,
    bearing fruit each season.
Their leaves never wither,
    and they prosper in all they do.

Psalm 1:2-3, New Living Translation

How about you – dear friend? What do you need to surrender to the Lord Jesus today? How are you struggling and in need of prayer or encouragement?

Featured image: Markos Mant

Forever His,
Stace

Abundant God + New Study

God is the God of abundance! He makes a way, even when there seems to be no way. Lately, I have felt empty. I am house confined right now. And, it’s hard. Some days my health allows me to open our window’s blinds to see things like sunshine, birds, and small children at play. Some days, it just doesn’t allow for that. Some days, I am too tired, nauseous, or tachycardiac to do even the simplest of things like – washing dishes or eating a small meal.

Even so, I am learning God is our God of abundance. A few days ago, I was able to sit with this passage and it gave me much needed encouragement!

O God, when you led your people out from Egypt, when you marched through the dry wasteland, the earth trembled, and the heavens poured down rain before you, the God of Sinai, before God, the God of Israel. You sent abundant rain, O God, to refresh the weary land. There your people finally settled, and with a bountiful harvest, O God, you provided for your needy people (Psalm 68:7-10, NLT).

No matter what we have lost due to our choice to follow our Lord Jesus, or perhaps health, relationships, etc, God will replenish. He will not leave us, so we feel the weight of what used to be. He can {and will} fill it with something increasingly better – if we will allow for Him to.

As we draw near to Him, He continues to fill us up with His presence and strength!

In the world we live in, it can be too easy to begin comparing today to yesterday. Each day is a gift. Let’s allow God – our generous God – to show up and surprise us with His marvelous works!


Our Newest Study –

It can be hard to stay encouraged while dealing with chronic illness or other trials life throws our way. It can be harder to sit and read our Bible, with all the details swirling through our heads. This is why I wanted to start a new Bible study through Gracefully Overcoming on the book of 1 Corinthians. This first segment is 6 weeks long and takes us through the first three chapters.

I invite you to join us, as we step into 1 Corinthians starting Monday, October 1st. This weekend is when I will share our “cheat sheet”, so we know where we will be going each day.

This study, my goals are pretty simple:

  • Limit our daily verses to no more than four verses. This makes it easier for those with difficult lifestyles or chronic pain to join in the joy of our study.
  • Make this a Monday through Friday study. This gives us the weekend to get caught up if we find ourselves already behind by the end of the first week. {Anyone else find themselves in these messy spots?}
  • Each week, there will be a discussion question found over on the Facebook page. As well, as the daily threads.
  • Ideally, there will be a weekly blog post {Possibly Tuesday of each week}.

Featured image by Lÿvean Imedecis.

In Him,
Stacey