Planning is a wise thing but sometimes we can take planning too far. We want to have everything set for the next 10 or 20 years. The thing about life is that it has its curve balls. When we think too far ahead it can make us begin to worry about what can go wrong.
It is good to think ahead and have an over all plan but it is also important to be flexible.
I have learned that it is easier to trust God and take life one step at a time. It is good to have a safety net whether that is food or money but God should be the main safety net.
Matthew 6:25-33 KJV — Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature? And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith? Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
So take life one step at a time and trust God to help you along the way.
“Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God” – Corrie Ten Boom.
This is an important truth to remember. Corrie Ten Boom’s story has really encouraged me so today i want to pass along some life lessons I have learned from the book The Hiding Place. This book tells Corrie Ten Boom’s story from her childhood from growing up in holland in the midst of World War I and World War ii and tells the story of her and her family’s part in helping to hide jews from the German enemy, to being taken captive to a concentration camp and making it out on the other side learning about patience, faith, joy in suffering, love and forgiveness and the faithfulness of God.
Patience and faith
Corrie had to learn about patience even as a young child. She had to wait for answers to questions that would be too heavy to carry the answer to as a child. When she became an adult she had to learn to be patient while waiting in prison not knowing what would happen next. In order to have patience you must also have faith, faith that God is in control and is able to provide the answer to your question at the correct time. Her faith grew each time she faced a challenge in life as she saw the hand of God in every situation. When faith grows your patience also grows.
I am learning this lesson in my own life. When I become inpatient about something in my life I find it is because my faith is wavering. I am learning that I may not be ready to carry an answer to my question and I must trust that God will provide me the answer when I am ready. This lesson is helping me to stop and wait on God instead of doing things my way and in my time frame.
Joy in Suffering
Joy in suffering is another lesson found in this story. We see this in Corrie’s mother. She suffered a stroke that left her unable to do much but she never lost her smile or her serving attitude. She still found a way to reach out to others and be a help and encouragement even in her state. We see this in Betsy who could find a way to decorate even something as gloomy as a prison cell. She always tried to find the good in even the worse situation.
This has shown me to have a mind set that tries to find the good in whatever situation I am in. This is only possible when we know that God is with us. This also can only happen when we learn to be thankful for everything that comes our way whether it is a bad or a good thing.
Learning to love the way God loves is an important lesson to learn. Corrie had to learn this throughout her life. She had to learn to love karl the way God loved him. She had to learn to love those that took her and her family captive the way that God loved them. This lesson took time and much tears to learn but it is worth it.
This is something that we can not do on our own, only God can mold us and help us love our enemy. We can only truly love when we realize that God loved us first. God also loves those that are our enemy. I am still learning this lesson, learning to love those that hurt me because God still loves them.
Forgiveness is another important lesson in this story. Corrie has to learn to forgive her enemies even as they caused the death of her loved ones. There is so much power and healing in forgiveness and she got to leave a positive impact on many people after she was free but it was a journey to reach that place.
I am learning what it truly means to forgive and that it is only possible to forgive when you realize how much God has forgiven you. God sent his son Jesus Christ to die on the cross and his blood that he shed was enough to cover for to forgive the sins of each person that comes to him in faith. Jesus rose to life again and all a person needs to do to be forgiven is to ask Jesus to save them believing that his blood paid the price of their sin and they will be forgiven. We can forgive our enemies and let God handle the rest.
The faithfulness of God
The faithfulness of God is evident time after time in this story. We see it in how he provided for Corrie and her family. We see it in how he provided a hiding place for the jews. We see it in how he took care of Corrie and her sister even in the worst situations of being in a concentration camp. We see it in the strength he gave Corrie to go on when facing the loss of her loved ones. We see it in the love and healing that took between those that were once enemies.
This has shown me to keep trusting God because he is faithful and his love is unending and he will lead me in all aspects of life. He will provide all that i need at the exact time not a day earlier or later. He is my strength when I am week.
Some extra thoughts
I hope that you will read the entire book because I believe that it will change your life for the better. I hope that you will give God a chance to change your life for the better.
You can find more quotes from Corrie and from the book here.
Role models and mentors are great to have and they should not be taken for granted. We all have those people that we look up to in life and in honor of international Women’s Day i want to share four women that inspire me. My faith plays a very important role in my life so I have chosen four women from the Bible that inspire me.
Esther was a young Jewish woman who became queen of Persia after winning a beauty pageant put on by the king to replace the former queen that had been banished from the kingdom. Mordecai, Esther’s guardian tells her to hide the fact that she is a Jew. Later on the second in command to the king named Haman draws up a plot to kill mordecai and the rest of the Jewish people. He was angered because mordecai refused to bow to him in honor. Mordecai discovers the plot and manages to warn Esther. Esther is faced with a life threatening decision to have to approach the king without an invitation. This action could have ended her life as the action of approaching the king without being summoned was a crime that was punished by death. She was brave and approached the king and he let her speak and eventually made 3 banquets for the king. She was eventually able to reveal the plan devised by Haman to kill mordecai and the Jews revealing to the king that she was also a Jew. The king had originally agreed on the plot to kill the Jews as he was persuaded by Haman but upon learning the truth of the matter along with an interesting twist at the end, he revises his order to now permit all the Jews to come together and fight their enemies. I suggest that you read the entire story to understand it all. Read the story beginning here.
Esther inspires me because she found the courage to speak up and stand in the gap for her people. God was still working behind all of it and his faithfulness is seen in this story but Esther took hold of that moment and used her voice. I hope to be like Esther and with the help of God be able to use my voice to help others.
I have always loved the story of Ruth. She chose to stay with her mother in law when her husband died. She chose to follow God. She worked hard to provide for her mother in law and herself and she never gave up on life. God provided a new husband for herlater on and a son.
I hope to have the strength, loyalty and courage that Ruth had. She faced each challenge and never gave up. You can read the story of Ruth beginning here.
The story of Abigail may not be a popular Bible story but she caught my attention from the first time I read her story. She was married to a very foolish and angry man and in the story she prevents him from making a bad decision that would lead to tragedy. In the end God rewards her for her wisdom. She endured marriage to a bad tempered man but at the end he died of a heart attack or something close to that and she ended up marrying David. David had sent men to Abigail’s husband to prepare for his arrival but her husband rudely dismissed them. The actions angered David and he was soon on his way to destroy the entire household. Abigail was notified of her husband’s actions and her wise actions saved many lives. She went out to meet David and his men with many gifts and pleaded for her household to be spared. This helped to change David’s heart and he did not go on with his plans. Her husband died shortly after.
I hope to be a wise woman as Abigail was and to be humble and have the courage she had in life. You can read the story here.
The woman with the issue of blood that lasted 12 years
This story can be found in Mark 5 verses 25-34. The woman had been bleeding on for 12 years. She went to all the doctors and tried every remedy but nothing helped. She was brave enough to reach out to Jesus for help. She only touched the hem of his garment and was healed.
I hope to be brave enough and reach out when I need help. Sharing our weakness makes us strong. Women out there, do not be afraid to reach out for help. Jesus Christ is there for you.
Some extra thoughts
I hope these stories have encouraged you and that you can find a role model in these women. For more examples of godly women that are living in our world today check out Gently Led Sisters on YouTube.
*the image of pink flowers behind the text is by Pixabay from Pexels.
March is Women’s History month. I recently read a Bible plan geared to women and it was very encouraging to me so I want to pass it along. The plan is called Becoming a Well-Watered Woman in a Parched World. This devotional showed me what it means to truly be rooted in Jesus Christ. Here are some important points that you will find in this plan.
The only way to make it through this uncertain and stressful life is to be rooted in Jesus Christ. When we are rooted in Christ we can make it through the storms of life.
Your identity must be found in who God says you are. Do not let the world with Hollywood and other aspects of society shape you. God made you the way you are and what God has made should not be questioned.
The truth is that only God can fill the hole in our soul. This life and all it may offer will never be enough to truly fill or complete a person.
In order to be rooted in Christ you need to spend time taking in the nourishment of his Word. Spending time with God in his Word each morning is necessary to be rooted down deep in Jesus Christ. Yes you are saved in an instant it is a gift of God but growing closer to God takes time.
You may reach a point where walking with God becomes almost like another chore. Do not be discouraged, instead seek to include God in all aspects of life. Spending time with God should not be another chore but try to keep God in your thoughts during your entire day.
Remember that you are still growing as a flower grows. There is still much to learn but you need the proper nourishment and care to keep growing so take your walk with God one day at a time.
Walking with God is not a 1 mile sprint. This is a lifelong journey. Salvation happens in an instant but your growth takes a lifelong journey.
This message of course applies to women and men and I hope this will encourage you. It is a 7 day plan and I encourage you to read it. Let me know what you thought of it below.
*The image of the green ferns border is by Jordan Samchez via Unsplash
Today I want to speak to the single people out there. I am here to say that it is okay to be single on Valentine’s Day. This time of the year can be hard for some people when they are the only one alone and everyone else seems to have a boyfriend or girlfriend or husband or wife. The truth is that it is better to be single than to be with someone that is not the best fit for you.
I am single myself but i am someone that does not make a big deal about Valentine’s Day. I think that you should treat every day like Valentine’s Day in a relationship.
The reality is that you do not need to be in a relationship to be happy, you can learn to enjoy spending time with yourself and spend this time preparing for a relationship. You can’t rely on someone else to make you happy or to fill your life. I am a Christian and I believe that this only comes from God.
I struggle with being single at times and it can discouraging some days but I lean on God for encouragement along the way.
So if you struggle being single on Valentine’s Day try to do these things to help you get through the day.
Remember you are not alone. God loves you and cares for every aspect of your life. Spend some extra time with God on that day.
Get yourself your favorite sweet treat.
Spend time doing your favorite thing.
Remember being single gives you more time and freedom to do your own thing on your own time. When you are in a relationship you have to adapt your schedule to fit the other person in and things will not be the same anymore. Enjoy this season of being single so you can then enjoy a relationship.
This passage from 1 Corinthians chapter 7 is encouraging to me as it reminds me to stop focusing on the fact that i am single and to instead focus on God as time is short.
1 Corinthians 7:25-40 KJV — Now concerning virgins I have no commandment of the Lord: yet I give my judgment, as one that hath obtained mercy of the Lord to be faithful. I suppose therefore that this is good for the present distress, I say, that it is good for a man so to be. Art thou bound unto a wife? seek not to be loosed. Art thou loosed from a wife? seek not a wife. But and if thou marry, thou hast not sinned; and if a virgin marry, she hath not sinned. Nevertheless such shall have trouble in the flesh: but I spare you. But this I say, brethren, the time is short: it remaineth, that both they that have wives be as though they had none; And they that weep, as though they wept not; and they that rejoice, as though they rejoiced not; and they that buy, as though they possessed not; And they that use this world, as not abusing it: for the fashion of this world passeth away. But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord: But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife. There is difference also between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit: but she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband. And this I speak for your own profit; not that I may cast a snare upon you, but for that which is comely, and that ye may attend upon the Lord without distraction. But if any man think that he behaveth himself uncomely toward his virgin, if she pass the flower of her age, and need so require, let him do what he will, he sinneth not: let them marry. Nevertheless he that standeth stedfast in his heart, having no necessity, but hath power over his own will, and hath so decreed in his heart that he will keep his virgin, doeth well. So then he that giveth her in marriage doeth well; but he that giveth her not in marriage doeth better. The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth; but if her husband be dead, she is at liberty to be married to whom she will; only in the Lord. But she is happier if she so abide, after my judgment: and I think also that I have the Spirit of God.
This devotional has encouraged me when I struggle with being single and I hope it will encourage you as well.