But Take Heart...

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

John 16:33 (NIV)

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Thoughts To Ponder

What do we do when the harsh realities of life crash into our happy lives? The day is going smooth and life is moving along well when you receive that life-altering phone call, or news from a loved one that causes your world to crumble. You may even turn on the news to see yet another turn of events that sends shock waves across the world.  How do we recover when the bottom is snatched from under us?  As women, we always want to hold things together, but sometimes life gets too heavy!

Jesus says that trouble will come, but we are to "take heart!".  To "take heart" means "to have more courage and confidence, or to cheer up", according to Collins Dictionary. This message sounds so simple and understated, yet the worries of life make it difficult to follow.  If He tells us that in Him we will have peace because He has overcome the world, then this is the state He wants us to be in when trouble hits. We can achieve this state of peace because we know He will carry us thru the troubles we face.  It is not our job to carry the weight of the world on our shoulders.  Our only task is to trust in and turn to Jesus.

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Today's Challenge:

Allow God's peace to flow through you, regardless of the challenges you may face today.

***Please share your journey of peace and how it affected you.***

What Are You Wearing?

"Since God chose you to be the holy people He loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience."

Colossians 3:12 (NLT)

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Thoughts to Ponder

Most women want to stay current with the latest fashions. We don't want to walk into a function out of style, overdressed or underdressed.  Even recently, when attending an event, a girlfriend and I were texting to inquire about what the other was wearing to the event.  Should we dress formal or semi-formal, wear dark or light colors, ...? This matters a lot to most of us.

What matters to God? He tells us to clothe ourselves with things that have nothing to do with the external.  We are to put on mercy with a tender heart, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.  How do we prepare in these areas when we are going out.  I am guilty of making sure my hair is done, makeup is sufficient and clothes are somewhat cute.  If I spent a fraction of that time being deliberate about clothing myself in God's attire, I would reduce the number of times I am caught off guard and find myself reacting to situations instead of having a controlled response that is pleasing to God. 

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Today's Challenge

Be intentional about clothing yourself with God's clothing.

***Please share your experience.***

A Work in Progress

"And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns."

Philippians 1:6 (NLT) 

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Thoughts to Ponder

It's so good to be reminded that God isn't finished with us.  No matter what season in which we are or what we have or have not accomplished, God will continue His work in each believer until His return.  The Apostle Paul continues in his letter to the Philippian Christians in chapter 1:9-11, stating the following prayer requests:

1. Their love would overflow more and more.

2. They would continue growing in knowledge and understanding.

3. They would understand what really matters and live pure and blameless lives. 

4. They would always be filled with the fruit of their salvation. 

He further states that these attributes, (love, knowledge/understanding, prioritizing and godly fruit),  would bring much glory and praise to God. What a comfort and privilege to know that God will continue to work in us and through us. 

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Today's Challenge:

Choose at least one of the above attributes and pray that God grows you in that area. 

***Please share how you see God working in these areas.***

 

Who Are You?

 

"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well."

(Psalm 139:14, NIV)

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Thoughts To Ponder

How do you view yourself?  Is it through the eyes of others or the eyes of God?  Do you feel pretty, until you are with someone who is thinner, has nicer hair, a more impressive wardrobe, a prestigious career, etc.? Do you feel smart and talented, until you meet someone who has accomplished more than you could ever imagine or dream?  Many of us have struggled with bouts of insecurity on some level. At its core, we fail to see ourselves through God's eyes.  We are women who are fearfully and wonderfully made!  Should we strive to be healthy and reach the potential that God has given each of us?  Absolutely! Our focus, however, needs to consistently be on seeing ourselves through God's eyes and glancing at other women only to encourage them to see themselves through God's eyes also. 

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Today's Challenge

Meditate today on the truth that you are fearfully and wonderfully made.

***Please share how this thought encourages you.***

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Called For God's Work

"But when God, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son in me so that I might preach him among the Gentiles, my immediate response was not to consult any human being. I did not go up to Jerusalem to see those who were apostles before I was, but I went into Arabia. Later I returned to Damascus."

Galatians 1:15-17, (NIV)

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Thought to Ponder:

As children/women of God, we are called and set apart from birth to do God's work.  Like the Apostle Paul, we women each have at least one spiritual gift that is to be used to glorify God, to edify the body of Christ, and to witness to non-believers.

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Today's Challenge:

Walk boldly in your spiritual gift, without seeking approval from others, knowing that when God calls you to His work, He will empower and strengthen you to complete it.

***Please share with us how you walked boldly today.***

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