Posts Tagged ‘fear’

  

“I will sing to the LORD as long as I live. I will praise my God to my last breath!” (Psalms‬ ‭104‬:‭33‬ NLT)

George Dennehy was born without arms, but he plays guitar like a pro. How? The 18-year-old from Ashland, Virginia uses his feet! The gifted teen told in an interview that he eats, types and washes his hair with his feet, and he says he’s primarily right-footed. He also said, “I want it [music] to be my career. I have the opportunity to speak/play at different events or churches, you name it! I’m hoping big things will happen.” 

And according to the Huffington Post, Dennehy isn’t the only teen who hasn’t let physical challenges stop him from achieving his dreams. Fourteen-year-old athlete Coleman Shannon, whose right arm ends at his elbow, recently pitched a no-hitter against his neighboring Little League team. And in 2010, armless piano player Liu Wei became a hit on “China’s Got Talent” and achieved Internet fame. 

We tend to be a society and people who are afraid to live or try because of failure, yet we are surrounded every day by those who take chances because they have to just to survive. Be one that achieves life instead of slumping towards existence! Live the vibrant life God gives! You are loved without excuse! 

  

As for me, if I am bereaved, I am bereaved.” (Genesis‬ ‭43‬:‭14‬ NIV)

Ronald Heifetz, professor at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, likes to say that if you make one real decision in your life, that’s more than most people. Taking a real risk? Well, that’s just a rarity. And that’s the point about faith: If there wasn’t a mix of fear and failure, it would be called security!

Tim Westergren, founder of Pandora Radio, describes his leap of faith this way:

“In the winter of 2001, Pandora was out of money. We had a choice: cut our losses and throw in the towel or find a way to keep going. We decided to keep the company alive and start deferring salaries. Ultimately, over 50 people deferred almost $1.5 million over the course of two years (a practice that is illegal in California). When we were finally rescued by an investment in 2004, I had maxed-out 11 credit cards.” Today, Pandora’s net worth is over $900 million!

Israel’s patriarch, Jacob, had to come to the end of himself and step out towards Egypt. The result? He found his lost son and saved his family. What would happen if you obediently stepped out in faith towards God, even if it meant giving up all you had? If God is behind it, you’ll find more than you were prepared to lose! You are loved today! Take the leap! 



As the time drew near for him to ascend to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem.” (Luke‬ ‭9‬:‭51‬ NLT)

At this moment in Jesus’ life, He had just prophesied twice that He was about to be put to death for His teachings. His time was drawing short. To get to Heaven and be with the Father, the Son had to pass through a severe moment in Jerusalem. So, instead of ducking and avoiding it, He made up His mind and headed into it. Now that’s courage!

There are many times in our lives that for us to enjoy certain activities or moments, we must first go through some difficulties that loom in front of us like Judgment Day. And the more we see it, the more we want to procrastinate and avoid it. Be it goals, deadlines, unpleasant meetings, or a lot of piled up hard work, they sit there in the middle of our path, waiting to be conquered. Trust that God can give you the courage to take on the inevitable, which leads to better days. 

As you come to church today, relinquish your plans to the Father. We don’t see the whole picture, but He does. Where God leads you, whether toward bright mountain tops or dark valley floors, is the best of places because He is with you! Got a “High Noon” moment in your path? Then be like Jesus and set yourself towards it, knowing that God has this and you will overcome! You are loved today! Have courage! 

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As the sun was going down, Abram fell into a deep sleep, and a terrifying darkness came down over him.” (Genesis‬ ‭15‬:‭12‬ NLT)

According to various ancient cultures, the period of night just prior to dawn was a sacred moment. The Celts called it “the time-between-times”, where earthly and spiritual boundaries got very relaxed and greater interaction could happen between the two. My concern would be making sure it’s God and not something weird coming across for a visit!

In this text, Abram is about to receive an important revelation from God. With too much light, we’re easily distracted, thus God’s need to allow darkness to get our attention so that His illumination is the only one we see. Our role is to be disciplined in the darkness, waiting until God reveals all, not jumping for more comfortable whims.

Our God is not one that enjoys seeing us panic. But neither is He given to allowing us to disregard His plans out of our own conveniences or fears. If you know God is moving but find yourself in a dark place, then be still. It means He’s desiring your full attention because the dawn of action is coming! You are loved today! See you at church!

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Then the shepherds said to one another, ‘Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing…which the Lord has made known to us.'” (Luke‬ ‭2‬:‭15‬ NKJV)

Have you ever wondered what the Christmas story would have been like if Mary and Joseph hadn’t traveled to Bethlehem, in spite of the official census? What if the shepherds chose to stay in the fields, ignoring the angel’s urging? What if the wise men had better things to do than to chase a star across the desert? Things would have turned out a LOT different!

When God brings a word or revelation to your life, it is useless unless it is acted upon. God’s urging means there is a plan, but it incorporates our commitment of action to create His desired outcome. Our problem is usually that we desire our own convenience over the sacrifice to find the endeavored blessing that awaits us. We don’t like things that cost us something.

As we celebrate Jesus’ advent of salvation for all mankind at Christmas, consider His plans for your life. If you are willing to be obedient and search out God’s best at His leading, you’ll find spiritual discoveries that not only change your life, but that impact those around you too! Come and see! You are loved!

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Do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit.” (Matthew‬ ‭1‬:‭20‬ NLT)

For parents, trying to get your children to trust your judgment is a continuous cycle of frustration. We have a standing rule in our house: You have to actually TRY a food before you can say you don’t like it. I, personally, detest green bean casserole, but I have also tried it. But when my kids were little and extremely squeamish, anything not resembling a french fry or chicken nugget was horrible! What we knew, and they didn’t, was that if they would simply TRY it, they might actually like it.

Joseph was having to trust God when his fiancée turned up pregnant. Yea, that was a new one for the history books. There’s much about what God does that doesn’t make sense to us, and that’s okay. We also can’t see the outcomes of where those decisions lie. By trusting God when things don’t make sense, we are admitting that God knows better and isn’t trying to destroy our life.

If God leads you to a place like this, don’t panic! Everything He does is ALWAYS wrapped around a brilliant plan. Like Joseph, trust that it will make sense eventually. If God isn’t panicking, then neither should we! You are loved today!

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Abraham was confidently looking forward to a city with eternal foundations, a city designed and built by God.” (Hebrews‬ ‭11‬:‭10‬ NLT)

In the Old Testament, Abraham did an unheard of thing that became an incredible testimony by leaving home to follow God in a blind fashion: “Abraham obeyed God…He went without knowing where he was going” (Hebrews‬ ‭11‬:‭8‬). We don’t know what his mental process was to step out like that, but we simply know that he did. And by his obedience, life as we know it changed forever.

The hardest part of living the Christ Life is living by faith. Believing for things that AREN’T there, trusting that it WILL get accomplished, and even praying to a God that you’ve NEVER seen is really quite difficult! But without faith, we miss God’s approval. It’s not that God is cruel and hopes we stumble, but knows that if we learn to trust Him completely, life works out in a more desirable fashion!

While Abraham journeyed this life in faith, his greatest faith was for something beyond this life; he believed for his heavenly home. The faith to overcome this life is simply preparation to embrace the life that is to come! Live faithfully! But always aim for the prize of the greatest faith, to see God face to face! You are loved today and forever!