Monday, September 22, 2014

Give Me Words

   As I sit here, thinking of something to post that may be encouraging to you all, my mind is completely blank. Since I made this blog, I've wanted to regularly post things that are spiritual and uplifting. But sometimes, the words just don't come. Not that there aren't many insights and truths that could be shared, but as I've started to type several things that have come to mind, it just didn't seem like the words that needed to be said.

   Then, the thought came to my head: "God, give me words to speak." And there it was, exactly what I needed. I was trying to post/write something out of my own mind, logic and strength. But I do not want it to be my words that ultimately give you encouragement and uplift you in your spiritual walk; I want God to speak through me and in the process, encourage you. 

   Sometimes I can be too prideful to ask for His help. I am quick to think of what I want to say, and shut God out of it. But, when I get into that mindset, I undoubtedly get myself into trouble and end up hurting someone or saying something needless and useless. 

   So, today or any day, if you ever feel like you don't have the words to say in a certain situation, or you think you have something you want to say, but know it would be hurtful or back-biting, say a quick prayer to Jesus: "God, give me the right words to say. I don't have them, but You know what needs to be said." He is always listening, and is ever-present in our lives; even in the smallest situations we face.

  "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him."  -James 1:5

  "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."  -Philippians 4:6-7

  "I tell you, on the day of judgement people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned."   -Matthew 12:36-37

Monday, August 11, 2014

Boast In Your Weakness

2 Corinthians 12:9 says:

"But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me."

:: Oftentimes, we can't stand it when we are weak. We'll do anything to avoid the appearance of being weak. We can't let anybody see that we feel like we fall short. Gotta put on a tough face and look like we have it all together, all the time. I do it. You do it. Everybody does it. But why?

I'll tell you why: because Satan has fed us all the lie that everybody else always has it all together. He's told us that weakness is bad, and with that, you certainly should never show it to anyone. So we play the game, believe the lies, and hide the truth.

But the verse above gives us quite a different way to handle our weakness, doesn't it? In fact, Paul goes so far as to tell us to BOAST in our weakness. He's basically telling us to be proud of our weakness and showcase it. Why? Because in our weakness, God's power is made most evident in us. No wonder Satan is trying to keep us from showing our weakness; because it shows the power of God all the more when we are weaker.

So, stop the facade that Satan has called you to! We don't live under Satan; we live under Christ! Don't be ashamed of your weakness. Boast in it, for in your weakness, Christ's power is made perfect!!! ::

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Living A Life of Comparison

Do you ever have the feeling like time is at a standstill, or like you're stuck in the midst of an uneventful life that looks like it's got no real direction? Like everybody else's life is racing past you, and you're living but seeming to go nowhere? I've been there countless times, and it's a really tough place to be.

If you've felt this way, then undoubtedly you've run smack into the brick wall of COMPARISON. You look at other peoples' lives and are sure they've got it more together than you and are moving on up the ladder as far as living the productive life; and you feel like you're at the bottom looking up. The grass is forever greener on the other side, so it seems. So then starts the endless game of trying to live your life to impress other people, or trying to convince yourself that you have a life just as successful and productive as everybody else's.

That is an endless track that will keep you running in circles until your head spins and you finally just give up. But why do we start running on that track in the first place? Who said your life isn't successful? Who said you need to mimick other peoples' lives to be happy? The father of lies, Satan, told you those things. He wants you to think your life is horrible, rotten and uninteresting. He wants you to follow the crowd and pursue worldly things as a means to make your life "better" and "happier". But in the end, it leaves you feeling worse and like you'll never measure up.

The enemy would like to keep us in that cycle for as long as he can, but take heart: those are LIES, and as followers of Christ, we do not take our cues from Satan. We are called to listen to God and what He calls us to do and instructs us to do in His Word. In fact, there are many verses in the Bible that have to do with being content with your life. Here are a few:

" Only let each person lead the life that the Lord has assigned to him, and to which God has called him. This is my rule for all the churches."  -1 Corinthians 1:17

" And he said to them, ' Beware, and be on your guard against every form of greed; for not even when one has an abundance does his life consist of his possessions.' " -Luke 12:15

"But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you."  -Matthew 6:33

So, as you can see from these verses, God has called us to guard ourselves against greed, and to be concerned with living the life that's ours. He also said that He rewards those who seek His kingdom and His righteousness above all things. So, if we're busy actually obeying and living out these verses, we won't have time to be worrying about if our life measures up or looks as good as someone else's.

Stop trying to make your life look like something it's not. Your life is special, important and meaningful simply because God gave it to you. God gave you YOUR life, so live it, and live it for Him!!! :-)

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Father's Day

Fathers. We all have one. God has placed in all of our families the Dad that He deemed most suitable to be the head of our homes. Not because he was perfect, always selfless or even the most qualified man for the job. Not because he'd always make the right choices or be the best example of what a true man looks like. On the contrary, our dads are imperfect, make wrong choices, and are selfish at times. Sometimes they just make your blood boil, if you're being honest. But the good thing is, God doesn't expect them to be #1 and get everything right, and neither should we. Our dads are human beings, just like us, who trip up and make mistakes. To tell you the truth, I wouldn't want a dad who acted like he was perfect or could never admit to a fault. To me a dad like that would be unrelatable, unreasonable and would ultimately suppress my spirit under the weight of the unreachable goal of perfectionism.

So, even though our dads aren't always what we think they should be or act the way they should act, God has called us to honor him(our dad) and treat him with respect. We are to be merciful and loving towards our dads as Christ was towards us. When someone least deserves our love and respect, God still expects us to give it to them, because that's what He did for us. I know it's hard to do sometimes, because there have been many times our dads have hurt us or have not reached our expectations of him. But, we need to love our dads in spite of all that, and choose to not let his imperfections define who he is to us. Instead, determine to focus on the things that you admire in and love about your dad.

So today, and everyday, love your dad. And I mean truly LOVE him. Happy Father's Day!!! :-)

"Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be prolonged in the land which the Lord your God gives you."
-Deuteronomy 5:16

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Don't Become Too Busy For God

     Hey all! I apologize for not posting sooner. Life and work has taken up a lot of my time as of late, so I haven't kept up with my blogging as often as I had planned on. But the busy-ness of life has been teaching me some valuable lessons that I probably couldn't of learned otherwise :-) I couldn't possibly list everything I've learned, but I will try to summarize the main things. So here goes, and I hope what I've learned can help you in your life as well!

Lesson 1: The Importance of Work

Whether it's a job, a chore, schoolwork, etc., work is an essential aspect of all of our lives. God made our bodies to need to work in some shape or fashion. Not only that(and I know I'm not only speaking for myself), when we work we feel a sense of accomplishment. We also have a sense of being proud that someone needs us for something and that we have the ability to fill that need. Now, I know we usually don't consider our work a privilege, but if we have work to do with our hands, and even moreso if we get paid for it, then we are very blessed and very privileged. Our work is not merely for our benefit or pleasure, but it brings God pleasure to see you using your body that He gave you to DO something!

"Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since 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

Lesson 2: The Importance of Fun

Game Nights, sports, shopping, dancing, or whatever we may do for fun, it is also an essential part of our lives. Even though God desires for us to work, He also desires for us to be able to have enjoyable and fun extra things in our lives. God blesses us with things that we enjoy because He loves doing that for us. He created us to work and serve, but He also wanted to create something on which He could bestow His many blessings and great love.

" Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of heavenly lights..."  -James 1:17

Lesson 3: Don't Become Too Busy For God

Even though work and play are essential to our lives, we always should remember to keep them in their rightful place. When we become busy, it is easy to forget to put God, the One Who gave us our lives, first. Sadly, I am often guilty of letting my work or things I want to do take the place of God in my life. But it is usually not  just one big thing that replaces Him. Rather, it is the subtleness of one thing here, and then another thing there, that slowly, and sometimes unconciously, takes precedence over God. It happens quite easily. What takes up the majority of your thoughts everyday? What(or who) is the motivating force behind your actions? If God is not in His rightful place in your life, then nothing else will be. Don't become too busy for God. Nothing else is more essential to your life than Him.

"But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well."  -Matthew 6:33

I, by no means, have fully grasped the concept of always putting God first. We all fail and falter. But we are always learning new things and always being slowly(but surely) refined by our awesome God Who loves us and cares for us more than we could possibly imagine!!! :-) 

I hope something I've shared in this post has encouraged you! Please feel free to leave your thoughts and comments, as I would love to hear them! Blessings :-)

Friday, April 18, 2014

Good Friday

Oh, my precious Savior! When I am reminded of Your Sacrifice, I can do nothing but just thank You and let Your love for me cover all my worries, pain and fears. You wiped my transgressions away on that day and paid it all for me!!! Let my life sing of You and Your amazing love and sacrifice. I was and remain so unworthy, but You made and continue to make me worthy everyday.
"Jesus paid it all
All to Him I owe.
Sin had left a crimson stain
He washed it white as snow.

I hope you all had a blessed day today on Good Friday as we remember Jesus' love and sacrifice!!!

Monday, March 31, 2014

No Day Is Just Average

And yes, you may think it is easy for me to say that with today being my birthday, but hear me out. With it being my birthday, it has gotten me to thinking about how I view each day. Each day is a day that the Lord has made; he woke me up this morning and has chosen to let me enjoy all the blessings He's given me for another day, because He is good. Today happens to be the day I was born, and it only comes once a year, so yes, this day is more special to me than most. But every day that we can wake up, be alive and get to enjoy the life God has blessed us with is a great blessing!! Some days, when I don't have anything special or exciting planned, I tend to think of it as a boring or "average" day. But today is not an average or boring day to God; He allowed you to wake up this morning for a distinct purpose: to glorify Him with your life today. No one can promise you another day but today, so that makes today rather important, doesn't it? Live your life to the fullest every day, not just on your birthday or another "special" day. God views every day of your life as significant and important, and so we should strive to view our days the same way He does. Have an amazing and wonderful day!!!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Thy Word

You know how there are days where nothing's seeming to go right, and you wonder what happened to make everything go wrong? Now, I know you must be thinking, "Of course I have days like that! Everybody does";  and I understand, because I've had my share of those kind of days myself. I am not always in the habit of doing the following, but I've found it helps in a deep way when I do decide to do it. God's Word was not created just for Sundays, or just for when things are rough in our lives, but for any time of day. When you take the time to start off your day reading God's Word, even if it's just 1 verse, it adds a whole new element and perspective to your day you didn't have before. It all of a sudden seems to draw you closer to Him and you're refreshing your mind with what God says. What better way to start the day?! And even if you can't find time to do it in the morning, just finding the time to be in His Word at any point in the day affects your day positively. When you try to make it through your day on your own strength, it tends to sometimes be a not-so-good or a not-as-good-as-it-could-be kind of day, and you're left feeling like you're short on something, and for good reason too! God told us we cannot do things on our own and that we will always come up short when we try to do so. It's only when we immerse our minds in Him and His Word that we are refreshed and ready to face our day with a new courage and vigor. I would encourage you all strongly to incorporate reading God's Word and spending time with Him at some point during your day, and see if it doesn't make a (positive) difference! Some verses for thought:

"Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path." -Psalm 119:105

"But he answered, “It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” -Matthew 4:4

"This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success." -Joshua 1:8

"For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. " -Romans 15:4

"But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night." -Psalm 1:2

Have a blessed and wonderful day :D

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

"Love Is the Evidence"

Love. Such a big word, with countless meanings. Most of the time, when people hear the word "love", they can't quite put a finger on exactly what it means. Some people say it's a strong positive feeling, an emotion you feel for another person, or even a thing. Some people think it means the romantic kind of love, between a husband and wife. For some people, it's just a word, with no meaning behind it, because they've never experienced real love. But for some people, love is something they do; it's the way they live. That's the kind of love I want to expound on a little bit. You see, you can say you love somebody, or something, but if you don't back it up with actions, then the love you say you have is worthless. Love is an action, evidenced by things that you do(and for every circumstance there are different specific ways to show love).

My title for this post came from a line in a song by Citizen Way, called "Evidence", which some of you may have heard before. Basically, it is saying what I described above: Love is the evidence of the things you do. Everything you do shows who/what you really love. The way you spend your time, the way you treat others....these are just examples of how you can determine what you cherish most; what you LOVE. And one more aspect of what love is: It is the absence of self; the absence of seeking after things that will benefit ME. Rather, love is shown in the presence of self-sacrifice, giving, and seeking the benefit of others. I just want to encourage you all(and I am in need of this as much as anybody) to truly LOVE the people in your life. And not just your family and friends and people you know well, but anybody you come in contact with.

I would love to hear any thoughts you have on this post! Have a blessed and wonderful day :-)

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Taking the First Step

The title of my blog, Walking By Faith, holds a special meaning for me personally. In the latter part of the verse that contains my blog title, it says not to "walk by sight", meaning we shouldn't live based on what we see or feel, or what has to do with our physical bodies and habits. But isn't this exactly how we usually live our lives? We wake up every day, go about our daily business, and almost undoubtedly there will come situations throughout our day that we will have to make tough decisions. This is where the verse comes in. Usually when decisions need to be made, I tend to "walk by sight", and make choices based on how I perceive them and how I can get the best possible outcome out of it. God wants me to do the opposite, to "walk by faith"; meaning I may not have all the answers and know how things are going to turn out, but I can still trust Him and know that He is with me and guiding me all throughout my day. God told us to "walk by faith" because it is the only place where we trust Him the most, and trust ourselves the least. My life has been fraught with trusting in myself and making faithless choices, and I've determined to put that way of life behind me, and move ahead into a more faith-filled life!!

Some of you may be wondering why I got rid of my old blog. Well, I felt deep down that I had been using that blog as a way to draw attention to myself and what I was doing in my life. I had selfish motives for posting different things that I did, and I felt bad continuing to do so. So, with that said, I decided to delete it and start a new blog that would be moving in the opposite direction; a more "encouraging others" or "others focused"-type blog to help me change my focus to where it needs to be: off of myself! So this post is a symbol of me taking the first step towards living a more faith-based, selfless life. Thanks for reading, and Lord-willing, I'll be posting more soon! Have a blessed day :D