Tag Archives: God

Best Lesson of 2013


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Looking back on my highlights from 2013 one which stands out for me is learning more fully about the importance of prayer. Since starting to read Too Busy Not To Pray by Bill Hybels I have been challenged to give more priority to prayer and I continually use this book title as my motto because I am literally too busy not to pray.  Life has so many ups and downs, so many questions, changes, and challenges that it has become clear to me that daily moments with God are essential for living life well; without prayer life becomes just a matter of survival. I’ve also discovered that the more time I spend with God the clearer I can hear his voice and his leading. When I neglect daily prayer and the reading of his word I struggle to discern God’s voice, his direction, and his will for my life. This year I’ve come to discover that God’s plans for my life are extremely different to what I have been planning for myself therefore I need to be able to tune into his voice in order to know what is going on. Being able to hear God’s voice clearly through regular prayer makes all of this a lot easier. I’ve also rediscovered the ACTS prayer model – Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving and Supplication. This model of prayer has really helped grow my prayer life and refocused my attention to the most important reason of prayer which is adoring and worshiping God. Ultimately I’ve learnt that the more I invest into my relationship with God the more enjoyable my life is. Life is not necessarily easier when I pray regularly, there are still many ups and downs but my response to those constant changes is better because I am aligning myself with God everyday and constantlybeing reminded to look to Jesus as my role model in life. 

 

What is the greatest lesson God has taught you this year? 

God’s Special Possession

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“As you come to him, the living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, you also, like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.” 1 Peter 2:4-5

You are God’s special possession, chosen by God, for God. You are like a living stone and everyday God is moulding you, shaping you and building you into a spiritual house, a temple of his Holy Spirit. Be encouraged. You are one of God’s precious stones. You are loved, cherished and adored. You are God’s special possession and He is zealous for you, all of you. Let Him have you heart, your will, your all – a spiritual sacrifice acceptable to God through the saving grace of Jesus Christ.

Bible in One Year App

 

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Though it is nearing the end of the year but I feel compelled to tell you about this great “Bible in One Year” app I have been working through over the last few months. It was put together by the very wise and Holy-Spirit anointed Nicky Gumbel. Every day Nicky leads subscribers through the bible, with a psalm or proverb, and readings from the New and the Old Testament scriptures. Nicky provides teaching on each of the passages and has this fantastic way of always neatly tying the readings together through a daily theme. What I have found amazing about this app is how many times the Holy Spirit has spoken to me and taught me through Nicky’s words. So often the readings and teaching is exactly what I’ve needed that day, whether it be comforting or challenging. Friends of mine who use the app have commented on experiencing the same thing; it is clear that God is working through this app Nicky has developed. I encourage you to check it out and see for yourself. I have found that to be guided systematically through the scriptures, discovering new and wonderful insights on a daily basis has been such a pleasure and I have no doubt you’ll enjoy this app as much as I have! 

Find Nicky Gumbel’s Bible In One Year in the iTunes app store or at www.htb.org.uk/bioy

Our God-Shaped Hole

“There once was in man a true happiness of which now remain to him only the mark and empty trace, which he in vain tries to fill from all his surroundings, seeking from things absent the help he does not obtain in things present. But these are all inadequate, because the infinite abyss can only be filled by an infinite and immutable object, that is to say, only by God Himself.”

– C.S. Lewis

 

Are you seeking God’s presence or his presents?

 

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Too many of us long for His presents, rather than His presence

– Joyce Meyer. 

 

My husband and I have been journeying through the heartache of “unexplained infertility” for four years now. Not an easy journey and one that I would never wish on anyone, but one that God has called us on. And yet it just occurred to me that during the whole of the last four years, most of that time I’ve been seeking God’s presents rather than his presence. Every single month for the last four years I have desperately begged and pleaded with God to give us a child, but rarely have I thought to stop and seek him instead. All that time I was seeking his gifts, his presents, rather than God himself, the giver of the gifts. 

Recently my Mum told me of a book she was reading (of which I do not know the name) which taught that when we are longing for something, instead of focusing on the desire and repeatedly asking for it (for God knows what we want), we should come to the Lord in worship and praise, focusing on him alone. So while going through this round of IVF I thought I’d give it a try. Seriously, what did I have to lose? 

Whoa! I tell you, what a difference worship and praise of God has made to this cycle of treatment! Previously, I have been a nervous wreck during each fertility treatment, constantly analysing the changes in my body and being tied up in knots of worry about whether I am going to respond to the treatment and finally get pregnant. But this time it just doesn’t seem to matter. Worshiping Jesus has brought me so much peace and joy. I feel like I have finally surrendered to Him like never before. I know and trust that God is bringing good things to my life, that he has plans for my husband and I, plans for our welfare and not for harm, but for a future with hope (Jeremiah 29:11). So whether the fertility treatments work or not doesn’t really matter anymore: if it does then the Author of Life has ordained for this child to come into the world for his purposes, and if not then God has another plan for us and I am ready and willing to walk that journey with him. I’m not saying that we won’t feel sadness and grief if the treatment doesn’t work, but ultimately the God of the Universe holds my life in his hands and he has got an amazing purpose for my life which he is bringing about here and now. I trust him completely with whatever he has in store. No longer do I ask, Why are you doing this to me God? But rather I know that God works all things together for the good of those who love Him, who are called according to his purpose (Romans 8:28). And all this confidence and trust that I have now has come through worship and praise, seeking God’s presence, not his presents. I honestly wish I had learnt to do this earlier as it would have probably helped prevent a very broken and shattered heart. But God’s healing is here!

So if you are struggling with worry, fear or anxiety, desperately longing for prayers to be answered and change to come then I encourage you to seek the Giver of the gifts rather than the gifts, themselves. Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart (Psalm 37:4). Come to God seeking him first with a heart of thanksgiving and praise and let him fill you with his love, his joy, his peace and his spirit. You are his beloved child and he is holding you in the palm of his hand. Know that his plans for you will come in his timing. Trust him. Surrender to him. Worship him.