Trust Habits #8

Last week, I spoke about growing in consistently spending time with the Lord. This is such an important aspect in developing trust and intimacy in my relationship with Jesus Christ. If I want to see my relationship with our sweet Savior Jesus to experience growth, then, quality time with Him is a must.

I don’t know about you, but in my earthly relationships I can’t expect to have a relationship with others if I don’t speak to them (as well as listen when they speak to me). It is very much a two way street. We are urged to speak to our Lord as though we were speaking to a friend. Have you read Exodus 33:11?


Inside the Tent of Meeting, the Lord would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend. Afterward Moses would return to the camp, but the young man who assisted him, Joshua son of Nun, would remain behind in the Tent of Meeting.

Exodus 33:11, New Living Translation

God isn’t fearful of speaking to us. While He isn’t, we often might be fearful of speaking to the Lord. While we are invited, and urged even, to have a holy fear of the Lord, our fear might not be out of reverence for His holiness. It can often come from someplace else. This begs a question:

What do we need to do, in order to develop this kind of beautiful relationship with our Lord Jesus?

As we consider our relationship with the Almighty God, may we think about the quality of our conversations with the Most High God. May we think about the quality of our conversations with God, and give them to Him. God is good. God is holy. God is all powerful. God wants to be our Best Friend. God wants to have the kind of conversations with us, as we would have with our closest friends – but with even greater intimacy than we could ever hope to develop with close loved ones.

  • God spoke fearlessly to Moses.
  • Moses listened and responded, willingly.
  • Moses conducted business with the Lord.
  • Joshua stayed put, because Moses had a specific plan in place. First to meet with the Lord, and secondly to serve while Moses was gone.

How are you growing in talking with the Lord as one speaks to a friend? How could you grow deeper in this area?

My prayer life is an area where I desperately need to seek an abundance of grace and growth. As I seek our Lord Jesus Christ, I want to learn how to speak to the Lord as one speaks to a friend. My prayer life can grow much in this area. With each circumstance I face, it is a new opportunity to hear from God and develop the communication abilities to experience my Lord as the Best Friend I could ever have. Just as we do with each name for God, we can experience Him as our Best Friend. He is our Good Shepherd who wants to show us His amazing love and grace in our lives. He is our amazing heavenly Father who wants to intimately watch and communicate with us, as we enjoy the good gifts He gives to us.

Unsplash Photo: Emanuela Picone

In Him,
Stacey

Craving Fruit {VOTD}

But I say, walk habitually in the [Holy] Spirit [seek Him and be responsive to His guidance], and then you will certainly not carry out the desire of the sinful nature [which responds impulsively without regard for God and His precepts] (Gal. 5:16, AMP).

Life can become wearisome and difficult. Those same things can either draw us nearer to our Savior Jesus, or make us run away from Him. He is all powerful, and can radically change our situations. He can even turn us from a person whose anger is flared to someone who is captivated by His peace.

 Knowing He can change our hearts and situations, how are we running to Jesus as Lord?

This afternoon held a hard, yet beautiful moment. In the midst of “nurturing” a child’s attitude, I didn’t have much to give – especially patience. My heart was in desperate need of Jesus and all the spiritual fruit He has to offer someone like me.

So, I had to choose to mentally walk away, grab my earbuds, and praise God. . . Sometimes, walking away to praise God and allow His fruits to invade our soul – is exactly what we need. We need to do something in these hard moments, to help us – allow God to guide us.

Today, I wasn’t trying to teach some sort of grand spiritual lesson. I was just trying my best to allow Him to be my fuel and watch my words. I just needed to get through the moment.

In the process of me trying to seek God, this child did something similar and began to praise God using a tablet set on YouTube. Whether we realize it or not, others are watching our response to life and circumstances. Just keep seeking our Lord Jesus, and allow Him to lead you.

May we habitually come, seeking. The seeking makes room for us to hear directly from God. To allow our relationship to be nurtured. Not only does this time keep our relationship with Christ alive and active, it keeps our relationship with Christ fueled – so it can keep on growing.

Have you heard about the man, Enoch? This was a man who is noted in the Bible for walking with the Lord. We only know about him, through a few verses. He wholeheartedly sought after the Lord. The results are soul shaking. God can do anything in our lives, and He has amazing things in store for us.

22 After the birth of Methuselah, Enoch lived in close fellowship with God for another 300 years, and he had other sons and daughters.23 Enoch lived 365 years, 24 walking in close fellowship with God. Then one day he disappeared, because God took him (Gen. 5).

How are we choosing to live in close friendship with our God, allowing Him to cause our souls to soar – regardless of our circumstances?

Featured image is by Santiago Gomez from Unsplash.

In Christ,

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Party of One (BookLook Review)

JB Smith“Party of One” offers us, the Church that our Savior loves and purchased, a much needed conversation about singleness. A book on singleness can cover an array of topics, which this book touches on a lot of them.

While I disagreed with Joy Beth on many fronts, I respected her vulnerability. She warns us in advance, that this book will be outside of our comfort zone. And, it definitely was for me. I wrestled with a lot of things, but found comfort in others. I honestly don’t know how I felt about it all together yet.

Thankfully for me, this book is more like a memoir – so it makes for an easier grade | review. It earns four stars, because it is mostly listening in on conversations between Joy Beth and many others.

While I wanted to love this book, looked forward to its release, and the opportunity to read it, I honestly just did not love it. I thought it would leave me feeling closer to the Lord and armed in my singleness, but it had a different affect on me. I hope those who struggle with singleness will read it and make up their own mind about “Party of One”.

Bottom line: it opens the door to help us talk about singleness and how to better follow Him as His Church. We may disagree on various fronts as we listen into these table talks through this book, but it gets the conversations started. Which is the purpose for the book.

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through BookLook’s blogger review program, in exchange for a honest review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Who Are We Living For? {Diving Into The Corinthians}

This week, we have been studying 1 Corinthians 3. I have loved every moment of it. While it isn’t always easy to stop distractions for Bible study, it is always worth it!

Let’s get started, shall we? Grab your Corinthians journal, Bible, notebook – whatever you need.

Brothers and sisters, I couldn’t speak to you as people who live by the Holy Spirit. I had to speak to you as people who were still following the ways of the world. You aren’t growing as Christ wants you to. You are still like babies. The words I spoke to you were like milk, not like solid food. You weren’t ready for solid food yet. And you still aren’t ready for it (1 Cor. 3:1-2, NIRV).

God wants to save us, and to be in community with us through His Son Jesus Christ who paid the price! But, there’s more to our story: God wants to be our Refuge, Peace, and Comforter. He wants to rescue us from sin, help us through difficult times, and become our Best Friend. This is the God we get to experience on a daily basis.

Life gets rough, but it’s encouraging to know: God wants to be there for us.

Meeting with our Lord Jesus is going to transform us. God’s Spirit will actually change us from the inside out.

Holy Spirit Led

Paul couldn’t talk to the people like those who were being led by God’s Spirit. They wouldn’t allow the Holy Spirit to change them. They chose their sins, instead. We all have been there.

When living by the Holy Spirit: We will actually want to be around other Christians, talk about the Lord and Bible, and allow Him to radically change our lives. Their focus is on the Savior and eternal things.

Without the Holy Spirit leading us, our focus is on other things. It isn’t on our Risen Lord who can defeat the giants in our lives.

Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good (1 Peter 2:1-3, NIV).

If we want to see God perform miracles in our lives, we have to go deeper in our relationship with Christ!

Finding Excitement in Christ

There is an undeniable joy, when we have spent time with the Lord! He replaces loneliness and incompleteness with the filling of our soul. It’s inexplainable, other than to say “our cup overflows!”

To grow in Christ, we make the choice to invest in our relationship with Him. We choose to turn from sin and run to God – prayerfully sharing our need for Him! We may have screwed up, but no matter what – God’s grace is made available to each us – as we turn to Him.

Three questions for us –

  • Are we turning from sin, so we can turn to Christ?
  • Are we craving (and enjoying) alone time with our Lord Jesus?
    • Reading the Bible?
    • Prayer?
    • Being with other Christians?
  • How are we following Him in obedience?

Featured image by Ruben Mishchuk from Unsplash.

In Christ,

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Friendships in Seasons {POTF}

15 This you know, that all who are in Asia turned away from me; of whom are Phygelus and Hermogenes. 16 May the Lord grant mercy to the house of Onesiphorus, for he often refreshed me, and was not ashamed of my chain, 17 but when he was in Rome, he sought me diligently, and found me 18 (the Lord grant to him to find the Lord’s mercy in that day); and in how many things he served at Ephesus, you know very well (1 Timothy 1:15-18, WEB).

This is a place in Scripture, which can comfort many of us. We all go through times, where friends can opt to leave us. And, it is a hard thing to experience. . . but this Scripture offers hope. The hope is found through our Lord Jesus Christ! He is our Provider.

While friendships do change over time, let’s choose to realize the Lord is able to give us people to “do life” alongside.


You might be going through a “friendship drought” right now. Hang in there, dear reader. Keep relying on the Lord and praying for Him to bring you friends who are choosing to follow Him – who can help you along your way. Dive deep into your friendship with the Lord Himself, and stay connected to your Church family – even when the relationships don’t seem to be there or anywhere. He is working.


How does this passage teach us about friendships?

1… Remember those who have chosen to stay, when everyone else has moved on.

2… Not only do we need to remember these friends, we need to pray for our friends.

3… Choose to be a friend who stays with others in the valleys of life. Choose to be a friend who stays and is there to help refresh others in the midst of their trials.

When facing our own trials, it can be difficult to be there for another who is going through their own storm. It is possible, but requires due diligence. The best way to “be there” is use technology to check on friends, ask how we can specifically pray for them, or send them an uplifting song we come across.

4… Take some time and search your own heart. How have you wrestled with feeling ashamed of someone or their trial? Paul was blessed with a friend who intimately knew our Lord Jesus – and wasn’t ashamed of his friend’s circumstances. Being unashamed helped Paul’s friend to be emotionally available.

5… Put effort into pursuing friendships. I am not talking about taking ourselves on a mission trip to contact everyone we have ever met. I am talking about practical ways to dive in a bit more to cultivate deeper friendships. This means choosing to focus on one or two friends, praying for them, and learning how to be more selfless (focused on them, versus dominating the conversation) – so we can be there for them.

Each of these things are designed to help our relationships. But something must happen first. We need to make our friendship with our Lord Jesus our top priority. Allow Him to refresh you, so He can give you all that is needed to be there for others.

In Him,

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