Posts Tagged ‘Jesu’

“…but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” (John 4:14 NIV)

Picture a large meadow of yellow flowers bowing to a gentle breeze. This golden pond of beauty is densely populated on the outer edges by trees that stand stoic throughout the course of time. The summer sun hangs lazily alone in the afternoon sky against a canvass of aqua blue. The air is punctuated periodically by God’s curious creatures that fly about on cue — assuring the casual observer that life is more than worrying about the next event.

But that’s not all.

The sound of a rushing river nearby captures the essence of energy as it follows its familiar path toward the open sea. All marvel at its ability to remain constant. Nothing stops its flow. Its strength is undeniable. Its will, undeterred. The river beckons those who are thirsty to partake of its power to quench. For the filthy, it calls them to bathe in its capacity to cleanse. For everyone who seeks healing, it invites them to take a leap of faith and jump in.

Similarly, Father thank you for being the ever-present river of life in our lives. May the richness of your presence flow from us to others so that they may see your mercy and grace. May those who feel discouraged or depressed find supernatural strength in your heavenly reservoir of love.

forwardYet another said, “I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home.” Jesus said to him, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9:61-62 ESV)

One of the greatest challenges for every Christian is to follow Jesus and pursue His purpose for our lives without looking back.  Imagine trying to drive a car on the highway while looking the whole time in the rearview mirror; you’d be challenged to stay in your lane and avoid a collision.  Jesus’ illustration of plowing a field would have made perfect sense to his listeners living in an agricultural context.  If a farmer did not focus on what is ahead but was distracted by what was behind or on the periphery, it would be impossible to plow in a straight line.  The ox and plow would certainly veer off course.

Both positive and negative aspects of our lives have the potential to become distractions:

  • Past successes.
  • Past failures.
  • Internal insecurities.
  • External circumstances.
  • Comfort & security.
  • Even meaningful relationships.

It’s interesting that the man who wants to follow Jesus is distracted by something that we would consider a positive: his home and family.  Jesus is letting us know that even something that’s a huge blessing in our lives can become a distraction if it becomes more important than pursuing Jesus and His purpose. As we continue to seek Jesus, we must constantly be aware of the potential distractions in our rear view mirror of life. There can often be a tendency to look back and remember the good, instead of the great in front of you with Jesus.

How can you look ahead and refocus on Jesus and His purpose for you?

We all need to be lifted up and encouraged at times and the Bible is a great source for encouragement. The Bible is the living word of God and feeds us through the promises of God found in scripture. I have listed some of my favorite Bible verses for encouragement. These verses have lifted my spirit in times of need and I hope they do the same for you. Please also consider a deeper study of the Bible by looking up these verses and reading the context they come from. I pray these great scripture quotes are encouraging for you today!

Strength Quotes For Encouragement

Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and courageous. Do not fear or be in dread of them, for it is the LORD your God who goes with you. He will not leave you or forsake you.”

Isaiah 41:10 fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

Zephaniah 3:17 The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.

1 Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

2 Corinthians 4:16-18  So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison,  as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

Comfort And Encouragement Bible Verses

Deuteronomy 31:8 It is the LORD who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”

Psalm 9:9 The LORD is a stronghold for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble. And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek you.

Psalm 23:4  Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me;  your rod and your staff,  they comfort me.

Psalm 55:22  Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved.

Matthew 11:28-29 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

Peace Scripture Quotes For Encouragement

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.

John 16:33 I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”

Romans 8:6 For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.

Philippians 4:6-7 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.

Colossians 3:15 And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.

Encouragement Through God’s Promises

  •  The Promise of Eternal Life

John 6:47 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life.

  •   God’s Faithful

Deuteronomy 7:9 Know therefore that the LORD your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, to a thousand generations

  •  God promises To Guide Us

Psalm 32:8 I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you.

  •  All Scripture Is Inspired From God- The Bible Is The True Word Of God

2 Timothy 3:16-17  All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.

  • God Hears Our Prayers

1 John 5:14 And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us.

Christian Encouragement Quotes

God will not be absent when His people are on trial; he will stand in court as their advocate, to plead on their behalf.  –Charles Haddon Spurgeon

You are valuable because you exist. Not because of what you do or what you have done, but simply because you are. –Max Lucado

Be assured, if you walk with Him and look to Him, and expect help from Him, He will never fail you. –George Mueller

The stars may fall, but God’s promises will stand and be fulfilled. J. I. Packer

Of course we can never follow the Bible to closely, but there are times when we tend to use it to serve our own needs rather than to let it do the talking by itself. This is what most of us call legalism.

The word “legalism” does not occur in the Bible. It is a term Christians use to describe a doctrinal position emphasizing a system of rules and regulations for achieving both salvation and spiritual growth. Legalists believe in and demand a strict literal adherence to rules and regulations. Doctrinally, it is a position essentially opposed to grace. Those who hold a legalistic position often fail to see the real purpose for law, especially the purpose of the Old Testament law of Moses, which is to be our “schoolmaster” or “tutor” to bring us to Christ (Galatians 3:24).

Even true believers can be legalistic. We are instructed, rather, to be gracious to one another: “Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgment on disputable matters” (Romans 14:1). Sadly, there are those who feel so strongly about non-essential doctrines that they will run others out of their fellowship, not even allowing the expression of another viewpoint. That, too, is legalism. Many legalistic believers today make the error of demanding unqualified adherence to their own biblical interpretations and even to their own traditions. For example, there are those who feel that to be spiritual one must simply avoid tobacco, alcoholic beverages, dancing, movies, etc. The truth is that avoiding these things is no guarantee of spirituality.

The apostle Paul warns us of legalism in Colossians 2:20-23: “Since you died with Christ to the basic principles of this world, why, as though you still belonged to it, do you submit to its rules: ‘Do not handle! Do not taste! Do not touch!’? These are all destined to perish with use, because they are based on human commands and teachings. Such regulations indeed have an appearance of wisdom, with their self-imposed worship, their false humility and their harsh treatment of the body, but they lack any value in restraining sensual indulgence.” Legalists may appear to be righteous and spiritual, but legalism ultimately fails to accomplish God’s purposes because it is an outward performance instead of an inward change.

To avoid falling into the trap of legalism, we can start by holding fast to the words of the apostle John, “For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ” (John 1:17) and remembering to be gracious, especially to our brothers and sisters in Christ. “Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To his own master he stands or falls. And he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand” (Romans 14:4). “You, then, why do you judge your brother? Or why do you look down on your brother? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat” (Romans 14:10).

A word of caution is necessary here. While we need to be gracious to one another and tolerant of disagreement over disputable matters, we cannot accept heresy. We are exhorted to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints (Jude 3). If we remember these guidelines and apply them in love and mercy, we will be safe from both legalism and heresy. “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1).

 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matt 6:34 NIV

  1. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.  Phil 4:13 NIV
  2. Those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.  Isaiah 40:31 NIV
  3. “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life? Matt 6:25-27 NIV
  4. But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. Luke 21:14 NIV
  5. Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous be shaken. Psalm 55:22 NIV
  6. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7 NIV
  7. I keep my eyes always on the LORD. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken..  Psalm16:8 NIV
  8. Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.  Psalm 62:6 NIV
  9.  Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings Psalm 17:8 NIV
  10. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.  Psalm 91:4 NIV
  11. So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you;  I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.  Isaiah 41:10 NIV
  12. “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  Jeremiah 29:11 NIV
  13. 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 NIV
  14. The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. Psalm 28:7 NIV
  15. I lift up my eyes to the mountains— where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.  Psalm 121:1-2 NIV
  16. They will have no fear of bad news;  their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the LORD.  Psalm 112:7 NIV
  17. Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding Proverbs 3:5 NIV
  18. There you saw how the LORD your God carried you, as a father carries his son, all the way you went until you reached this place. Deut 1:31 NIV
  19. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ JesusPhil 4:6-7 NIV
  20. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.  2 Timothy 4:7 NIV
  21. Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,  fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.  Hebrews 12:1-2 NIV
  22. God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.  Psalm 46:1 NIV
  23. “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me.” John 14:1 NIV
  24. Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matt 11:28-30 NIV
  25. When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.  Psalm 56:3 NIV
  26. Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Deut 31:6 NIV
  27. Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ. Galatians 1:10 NIV
  28. What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans 8:31 NIV
  29. Know also that wisdom is like honey for you: If you find it, there is a future hope for you, and your hope will not be cut off. Proverbs 24:14 NIV
  30. I prayed to the LORD, and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears. Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy; no shadow of shame will darken their faces. In my desperation I prayed, and the LORD listened; he saved me from all my troubles. For the angel of the LORD is a guard; he surrounds and defends all who fear him. Psalm 34:4-7 NIV
  31. Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are.  In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.   1 Peter 5:7-10 NLT
  32. As for God, his way is perfect:  The LORD’s word is flawless;  he shields all who take refuge in him. 2 Samuel 22:31 NIV
  33. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” Matt 11:28-30 NIV
  34. “The LORD is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation. He is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him.  Exodus 15:2 NIV
  35. We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. Hebrews 6:19 NIV
  36. The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace. Romans 8:6 NIV
  37. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27 NIV
  38. May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had,  so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Romans 15:5-6 NIV
  39. You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires;  to be made new in the attitude of your minds;  and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.  Romans 4:22-24 NIV
  40. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.  Psalm 73:26 NIV
  41. Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.  Lamentations 3:22-23 NIV
  42. For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.  Hebrews 4:12 NIV
  43. What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?  Romans 8:31 NIV
  44. As for God, his way is perfect: The LORD’s word is flawless; he shields all who take refuge in him.  Psalm 18:30 NIV
  45. Are God’s consolations not enough for you, words spoken gently to you?  Job 15:11 NIV
  46. The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.  The righteous person may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all. Psalm34:17-19 NIV
  47. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.  Psalm 25:5 NIV
  48. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes;  its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit. Jeremiah 17:8 NIV
  49. For the word of the LORD is right and true; he is faithful in all he does. The LORD loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love. Psalm 33:4-5 NIV

One of the biggest things that keeps people from fulfilling their destiny is what they THINK they can or can’t accomplish.

It’s dangerous to rely on your own strength to bring about change in your life, and pursue your destiny. God needs to be the source of your strength. Yet you need to balance that with taking focused action, being proactive, and moving forward, or you run the risk of getting bogged down and staying stuck.

How do you decide what to focus on at any given time?

There may be periods in your life when God is teaching you lessons to help you grow in spiritual maturity. In those seasons it might seem as though there is a hold up when in reality God is training and maturing you!

You need to learn to recognize those times so that you can work WITH God rather than striving to accomplish something before its appointed time.

There will also be times when God is testing you and wants you to press on and move forward.

And there will be times when you ARE on target but the enemy is opposing you and trying to hold you back from pursuing the next steps. So being able to discern what is happening with timing is crucial.

I hope you know that racing ahead trying to get whatever you want and assuming it is God’s will for your life is unwise and likely to result in great disappointment. Your destiny will unfold over time, and it will happen in God’s timing.

Getting it right isn’t always easy! Trying to rush ahead and make things happen NOW will result in frustration and discontent, YET you need to be sure that you ARE doing your bit by actively pursuing your destiny.

I meet a lot of people who are afraid to move forward because they don’t want to make a mistake or do things outside of God’s timing, so they end up doing NOTHING.

If you ARE afraid to move forward it could be lack of faith, fear of failure, unbelief, or an array of limiting beliefs that are holding you back, or immobilising you by leading you to believe that may be you haven’t really heard God, or you’ve made a mistake, or it isn’t God’s timing.

Dealing with those negative thinking patterns involves work. It’s like training for a sport or learning to play an instrument. You can’t reasonably expect to do it well if you’ve only had a few lessons. To become good at it you need training and lots of practice until it became natural.

Think for a minute about something you want to accomplish or have in your life. Maybe you want a promotion, need a new car, want to train to be a counsellor or coach, feel led to attend a ministry training school, or write a book, or … fill in the blank.

Whatever it is, decide on ONE thing then follow the steps below.

Pray about your ONE THING every day for a month. Ask the Lord what He wants to say to you about it, be sure to listen for His answers, write down what you hear, and put it somewhere you will see it.

Steps to Doing Things God’s Way and in His Timing

  1. Develop your relationship with God through Jesus and regularly spend time with Him in prayer and study. It will be out of your relationship with God that your prayers will be answered.

    Learn to recognize God’s voice when He is speaking to you.

  2. Ask the Lord to show you whether what you are asking for is something that HE wants you to have or do. Ask for wisdom and for His timing.
  3. Once you know that what you want is within God’s will for your life, ask God to show you the way forward, have faith and believe that God will answer you one way or another, He WILL answer your prayers.
  4. Pray and ask God for the things that you want and need. Be sure to watch for answered prayer and keep a record to strengthen your faith.
  5. Be prepared for His answer to come in a variety of ways. God’s answers to your prayers may look different than you expect.

I hope you find this helpful.

Remember

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God,” Philippians 4:6

To be insecure is to lack confidence or trust, whether in ourselves or someone else. There are many causes of insecurity, but chief among them is our failure to fully trust God (Jeremiah 17:7-8). As believers, we have this assurance: “And those who know Your name put their trust in You, for You, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek You” (Psalm 9:10; also see Deuteronomy 31:8; Lamentations 3:57). If we know God is with us, why do we still experience feelings of insecurity, doubts, and fears? Why does God seem so far away?

In Satan’s arsenal, one of his biggest weapons is doubt. Satan loves for us to question who we are and how we measure up to others (Ephesians 2:1-2; Ephesians 6:12; 1 Samuel 16:7). He wants us to feel insecure over the meaning and purpose of our lives, where we’re going, and how we’ll get there.

Another cause of feelings of insecurity is reliance on wealth and possessions instead of God. The world encourages us to strive to be “number one” and promotes the adage “he with the most toys wins.” If we don’t have the latest iPhone, fastest car, biggest house, or largest paycheck, we are failures. Yet the Bible teaches us not to set our hopes on earthly riches but on God: “As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy” (1 Timothy 6:17, emphasis added; see also Mark 10:23-25; Luke 12:16-21). Riches, being uncertain, will certainly bring insecurity to those who trust in them.

Many times, insecurity takes the form of worry about the future. Jesus was empathic when He said, “Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow. . . .” (Matthew 6:31-34). Worrisome fears about the future are rooted in a doubt of God’s provision. This breeds strong feelings of insecurity and a lack of peace, resulting in fear and depression. When we doubt God, Satan wins (Philippians 4:6; 1 Peter 5:8).

Insecurity may also result from being preoccupied with the things of the world: “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him” (1 John 2:15). Security is not to be found in this world’s people, things, or institutions, including government institutions. Some people become obsessed with having the right leaders in government, the right laws, and the right policies. When the government is in the wrong hands, they contend, the nation is doomed. However, the Bible teaches us that God is in control and His sovereignty extends to governmental leaders (Proverbs 21:1; Daniel 2:21). While we should practice good citizenship and vote our conscience, we must also recognize that government policy cannot save us. Only God can do that (Isaiah 33:22; Psalm 143:6; Jeremiah 17:5-6).

Others place their trust in their pastor or other church leaders. However, men can and will let us down. Only Christ is the sure foundation. “So this is what the Sovereign LORD says: ‘See, I lay a stone in Zion, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone for a sure foundation; the one who relies on it will never be stricken with panic’” (Isaiah 28:16). Jesus is the solid rock and our only hope of security (Matthew 7:24).

Often, the reason for our insecurities is an undue preoccupation with our own selves, an “it’s all about me” mentality. The Bible warns us about self-absorption and pride (Romans 12:3). God’s work will be done “‘not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty” (Zechariah 4:6).

True security comes when you recognize that “God will supply every need of yours according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19). When struggling with feelings of insecurity, never forget God’s promise: “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.” (Isaiah 26:3).