Wednesday, June 26, 2013
Isaiah 41:13 "For I hold you by your right hand—I, the Lord your God. And I say to you,‘Don’t be afraid. I am here to help you." ***********************************************************************************
I just love how God speaks to my heart through His word. He led me to these verses when I was diagnosed with a brain tumor on May 20, 2012. I had brain surgery on May 24, to remove the benign tumor which was the size of an over-grown tangerine. It was a long 7 hour surgery and my surgeon removed it ALL! PTL!! Side note; 7 hours of surgery...the number 7 is the number of completion in the Bible :)
During my stay in the hospital, several of the staff would grab hold of my right hand with their right hand and look me in the eyes and talk tenderly to me. The first person to do this was my nurse,Faith, in the emergency room. After I received the news about the tumor, she grabbed my right hand with her right hand, looked me square in the eyes and said, "God told me to tell you, 'I will never leave you nor forsake you.'" Yes, I cried like a baby because my Lord spoke to me through my nurse! The next person was the young man who wheeled me up to my room. Once he got me settled in my bed, he grabbed my right hand with his right hand and said with all confidence, "God's got this!" Yep, you guessed it, I cried again!
I knew there was something significant about God's right hand so I began to look through the scriptures to find His truth. He lead me to Isaiah 41. Verses ten and thirteen stood out to me and as I read these precious words over and over again, God spoke clearly to my heart. Living face-to-face with Jesus is when His victorious right hand is holding on to my right hand and my eyes are fixed on His. Similar to Peter walking on the stormy sea. When his eyes were on Jesus, he was steady in his walk but as soon as he took his eyes off Him and started looking at the raging waves, he began to sink into the deep. (Matthew 14:22-31)
Life is like an ocean, calm and smooth and then out of no where a storm arises and the waves are crashing all around us. Some storms are predictable and others hit us when we least expect it. I would suspect those are the worst. But in our journey of life whether in a storm or all is well, we must keep our eyes fixed on Jesus. Hebrews 12:2 (NKJ), "...looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God."
May I encourage you to look to your Savior, He is there waiting for you to reach for His outstretched, nail scarred, victorious right hand with your right hand so that He can lead you through the storms and the joys of life. If you have never truly trusted Him as your Savior, what are you waiting for? Just call on His name, Jesus, believe in your heart that He died for YOUR sins, and God raised Him from the dead(Romans 10:9). If you do this He will reach for you and you, my friend, will have be saved. I am not promising that life will be easy after that but if you fix your gaze on Christ, He will walk with you and often times He will carry you.
Father God, help me to live face-to-face with Jesus, keeping my eyes fixed on Him during this journey of life. When I lose my focus, come to my rescue and as Your Holy Spirit quickens my heart, may I return my gaze to You. Father, You know the journey is hard and to some it seems there is no light at the end of their tunnel. I pray for those struggling right now that they will learn to live face-to-face with their Savior. No matter the journey we are on, we just need to hold on tight to your victorious right hand! In Jesus' name.
Monday, June 24, 2013
1 John 3:18 "Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions."
We've all heard the saying; "You sure can talk the talk but can you walk the walk?" When I read the words of John in this passage, that statement immediately came to mind.
How often do I say I love my neighbor yet refuse to help them when in need, Christian or not? How often do I not show mercy and instead judge another's faults? How often do I withhold forgivness when someone sins against me? Or retaliate when someone hurts me? This one hit me square in the eye; How often do you pray for those who are lost as well as my brothers/sisters in Christ who are struggling?
Being a Follower of Christ means we follow His example. We are supposed to do as He did. Jesus prayed, forgave, showed mercy, helped, healed, was compassionate, and never condemned. He didn't just do this to those who followed Him closely. He did it with everyone He met! I am reminded that Jesus washed the disciples feet...ALL the disciples, including Judas, the one who betrayed Him(John 13).
He also did not retaliate when the religious rulers spat in His face or the Roman soldiers plucked out His beard, beat Him beyond recognition, then finally nailed Him to the cross to die a sinners death. Instead He cried out, Father, forgive them for they don't know what they are doing!" (Luke 23:34) He definitely "walked the walk" and showed love in action.
Lord, help me to have Christ's attitude. Help me to follow His ways and not the ways of this world or my own flesh. I know that by Your Holy Spirit living in me, I can do all things through Christ who gives me strengh. I love you Lord and want to show Your love to the world but I do NEED Your help! In Jesus' name I pray!