How to Truly Live

Boats in Fewa Lake

How do we live on purpose? The struggle is real in this life and our circumstances are so often changing. In fact, we do not even know if the next day will be our last. If we really sink that into our spirit we find that all that we wish to accomplish in this life, we have not. So how do we live each day to the fullest? How do we ensure that we are doing everything where supposed to be doing? Simply put, we cannot on our own accord.

On my own accord I fall short in everything. With God, I am everything he wants me to be. To live on purpose is to put God first in everything because his hand guides me in every decision as long as I am willing to give myself and my days to him. I pray for his will and not my own be done every day. Just as Jesus prayed to God in Luke 22:42: “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.” Even through Jesus was about to suffer deeply for our sins, and he knew it, he still put God above himself, as we all should be doing. And let’s face it, most of us are not going to suffer to the extent that Jesus did.  In putting God first and praying for his will to be done, even if I stray off course, God will place me in the circumstances that will inevitably draw me back to him. God made us and knows best for us even though we do not understand his ways. This does not need to be a difficult task. If I am attuned to God’s voice and my focus remains on him, I am less prone to mistakes. Which is the better decision? Making time to spend time with God so that I am on track for God’s best for my life, or letting the world consume me, making excuses and losing site of God’s will for my life, and then, as a result, paying for my mistakes?

I prefer the road less traveled in today’s day and age. As Jesus put it, “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the way that leads to life, and only a few find it.” – Matthew 7:13-14

It is crucial that we must live on purpose, with his purpose in mind which we can only come to discover as we come to know Him in all his glory. I’m not just talking about a once a week visit to church. That only gives us a sampling of Jesus. There are indeed many who attend church but their heart is not in it. No, I want to go home from church with the desire to know Christ – and then make the effort to do so! Let’s be over achievers. Let us not only go to church, but strive to come to know God every day. Let us develop a relationship with Him so that we may come to know him and all his great love that Christ died on the cross for you and I to have..so that we may not only have it for ourselves, but so that we become inspired to give it away! After all, isn’t one of our life’s missions to “go make disciples?” Are we truly living the life of a servant, or are we just pretending? “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” – Matthew 28:19

We must make an effort to live on purpose- each day for God alone, and then my friends, the rest of the puzzle is not such a mystery anymore, and piece by piece we come to discover the complete picture.

“Teach us to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” – Psalm 90:12

Check on the following from my new devotional:

“There are in this world many paths that you can take. You are ultimately the decision maker, but I am the Way, the Truth, and the Light. It is in your best interest to choose to serve Me first above all else so that your decisions are made right. The world entices you with its outward appearances, but I do not have to entice you because I Am. Who I Am is the God of the universe; without Me, your decision will be in vain. Choose now, and commit to My ways so that day by day, through each of your many journeys, the world seems less enticing as you come to experience My presence, which produces for you an eternal glory incomprehensible to the false ways of the world.”

 

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

 

Mercy Road

Mercy Road cover

1986 Tonkawa, Oklahoma

The Swimming Hole is what we called it. Down a long, narrow trail, off the dirt road in the middle of nowhere in the countryside of Oklahoma me, Sarah and Mindy ran impatiently toward the swampy river so we could swing off the crazy rope and make a splash. It wasn’t very long ago we had learned to swim and now we were here ruling the banks of the Salt fork. So we thought. There was always a parent trailing not far behind.

Always wanting to grow up way too fast…at least for now

Finding Hope in: God’s Mighty Power

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“I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, for above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come.” –Ephesians 1:17-21

The power of God is within those who believe. Believers should not take this lightly because the power of God is the strongest, most mighty force ever conceived but often times we lose sight of this. The same power that creates mountains and seas can move them as well. The same is true with us. As God created us so can he “move us” on the inside. This inner move is unshakable with God at work on the inside. Although the enemy can shake the mountain, he cannot make the move. Only God holds this great power. Believers should have confidence in God’s mighty power within them to efficiently work for his kingdom in the present and not listen to the false accusations of the world. So, then we must submit to our Father in Heaven. For believers that remain consistent in God’s teachings, God reveals his power within them and thrust these them forward in success as His promises are exposed.

The revelation of my great works are available to those that believe in me. Believe that my plan for your life was set in stone long before you were conceived, and this plan involves you to join me in my kingdom at the end of your journey on earth. Although, the evil of the world will try to alter my initial plan for your life, you have the power through me and my son that resides within all who believe in us – to evoke Satan and his schemes to win you to the world through many of its false securities. Receive the power within you to continue with my great plan for your life by believing in my power to elevate you for my kingdom, despite what the world throws at you. Rebuke the world and follow me to the prize that awaits you in eternity and do not fall prey to the false powers of the world. Mountains are moved at the call of My Name. Storms are calmed and winds perish. All who come to Me are safe from the storm, though in the midst of it they may not see clearly. Fear not. I await you on the other side. The enemy is temporary; I have already called his fate. As the enemy enters your thoughts and mind trying to steal your inheritance, abandon him at once with the call of My Name! His fate is sealed. Your destiny is awaiting with Me in heaven-all you have to do is Call My Name for I am a Powerful God that is on your side!

“This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials” – 1 Peter 4-6

Prayer for the Day:

Dear Heavenly Father:

How great is your power! Who am I that I would question your greatness? You created the heavens and the universe and I am part of your great creation. You give me strength to withstand the world and to thrive despite the works of the enemy in the world. I believe in your power to move mountains and I believe that you will put the enemy in his place. In Jesus name, amen.

Finding Hope in Change

 

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And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)

Change makes us uncomfortable, but in the process of life, we must be open and willing for change. Not just any change will suffice. We must be willing to change in accordance will God’s will and not the world’s. In Christ, we are constantly growing into His likeness, and we cannot proceed if we remain stagnant. We must bring all decisions before God to ensure His direction and guidance along the way. Life changes that do not bring glory to our heavenly Father could detour us from the path to success. Welcome change as opportunity for growth in light of God’s plan—the way that God has chosen for you alone—and you will become more receptive to opportunity for growth in a fast-paced world.

The world is constantly growing and evolving into its ultimate destination that is the reigning new kingdom. Although you grow with the world, My chosen people do not grow like the world but rather, you are growing into the likeness of Christ. This faith walk secures your spot in the new kingdom, but I must realign you to My Truth as the enemy in the world frequently tries pulling you off your path. With Me by your side, you will always find your way back to the truth. Though you veer off ever so slightly, I am here to catch you and bring you back where you belong. You, My dear child, belong with Me for all eternity, so rest well and know that changes along your short flight to paradise are for your benefit and serve a higher purpose.

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:16–18)

Prayer for the Day

Dear Father, please help me to welcome any change that would glorify Your name. Help me to bring before Your throne all decisions in my life and to discern any change that would alter Your path for me. In everything, help me to work for the good. In Jesus’s name, I pray. Amen.

The Unconventional Guide to Words

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“Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will NEVER hurt me.” Ever heard that phrase? I did a long time ago on the playground. It’s sad that the meanness starts at such a young age which is even more reason we must learn to stand against such ugliness! There were, in fact, a lot of common phrases that didn’t end up meshing well with my life. For example, one common thing I would hear is “No Drinking and Driving,” and “Just Say No to Drugs!” It sounded good at the time and I was all for it, but when things got heated in my life because of things beyond my control- I then lost all control and these words of encouragement were lost in the shuffle of my life.

Slowly they were becoming drowned out by all the negativity. Darn it, I couldn’t be sweet and innocent anymore. Finally, fitting in with the world only to lose my sanity, I decided I needed to change for the better. I decided I didn’t want to be like the world with all its addiction, problems, negativity, and potty mouths! I wanted to be an overcomer! I must say even when I got sober and still had to “undue” the filth in my mind, it wasn’t until I became fully aware that the devil was constantly attacking my mind that I could rise up and fight the fear that still tried to plague me day by day. Positive, life-affirming words of God’s truth as in Scripture are what caused me to get there. I guess you could say that’s unconventional in today’s world. But I am saying that for me, it worked for the good in my life!

The stronger my mind the more I don’t let words affect me, or anything else for that matter. And when I am struggling in my thinking, speaking God’s Truth from Scripture helps me to fight the battle in my mind. We speak from our mouth God’s truth so that our mind will come in agreement. When we just can’t seem to say anything positive, we must work on our mind and heart so that we can change what comes out of our mouth. Joyce Meyers was a genius for writing her book Battlefield of the Mind because I would say most of the world struggles with the infectious disease that is a “wrong thinking.” Let’s face it, in today’s world you need a strong mind. And by the world Joyce’s book quickly became a best seller. I bet you can’t guess why.

“A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.” Luke 6:45

Words can fight the battle of negativity in our world. Particularly, in our own lives we want the magnificent promises of God to come true in our lives. So much of the worlds junk has really taken a toll on our minds. It’s time to rise and shout out of your mouth “God has a good plan for my life and I receive it today!”  All God’s blessings are there for us to receive, but amongst the turbulent world we sometimes must fight to get them. We declare God’s blessing over our lives with words. We rebuke and resist the enemy’s tactics and all the negativity in the world and in our lives and speak through our lips God’s truth. Because words do hurt and have the capacity to bind us and destroy us if we allow them.

“The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”- Proverbs 18:21.

The sad truth is words have crushed my heart, and what hurt the most is when these supposedly harmless pronunciations came from loved ones. Doesn’t make sense, the ones who say they love us the most end up hurting us the most. Words did hurt me but they no longer hold that power because I choose to speak life and protect my mind and my heart with the word of God. I have no choice in this world today and I don’t want my children going through the heartache that I went through. I know I can’t protect them from everything but I can sure help them be a light in a dark work by infusing them with positive encouragement and letting them know that they are valuable human beings- before the world tries to tell them that they’re not.

My mistake is-I believed the world and gave in- one of my greatest accomplishments is- that I rose above all the hype and I am a better person for it.

Devoting our time first thing in the morning can help both our minds and our words to be fruitful. Following is an exert from my devotional Finding Hope in a Turbulent World: A Ninety-Day Devotional

Finding Hope in: God’s Word

But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:14–17)

Praise be to the Father above, for He has spoken through His holy scripture. God’s Word provides us with the key to salvation. We must receive His Word unswervingly so that we may grow in grace and fulfill His great plan for us. Meditate on His Word both day and night, and you will inherit the riches of His kingdom. Seek Him with all your heart, and the light of the word comes to life, and we are blessed, unhindered by what lies ahead.

Seek Me with all your heart, and you will find Me. Acknowledge Me in all thy ways, and I will guide your step. Receive the power of My Word for your own life, and you will thrive. Listen to My still voice in the quiet of the night and the stillness of each morning. I have come so that you may have life, and so live it to the fullest and resist the temptation of the evil one, for he has come to kill, steal, and destroy. Hold fast to My holy scripture in these last days, and I will richly bless you. Trouble may come to My chosen people, but keep within you the light of My word, for no amount of pain can keep you from the glory of My presence soon to be made known. Share Me with others, for the time is near, and you have a special purpose while still on earth. You must reach out to all you know and pray for their salvation, for I am able to use you for the grand finale of all things soon to pass away. Mark My word that within you is the power of the Holy Spirit that will touch deeply those whom you come across.

 

For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edge sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account. (Hebrews 4:12–13)

Prayer for the Day

Dear Heavenly Father, I come to You before Your throne today, and I give thanks for Your mighty Word that guides me and instructs me and leads me to everlasting life! Please help me to treasure Your holy scripture and find the time in my day to devote myself to it passionately. Please help me not to take for granted Your words of hope and Your story of grace and love. In Jesus’s name, I pray. Amen!