Tag Archive | God’s grace

Gospel Identity: Overcoming Fear and Shame – FaithGateway

Todays devotional sheds light and truth into the dark corners where fear and shame like to hide. It points the way out for those who are caught in the sticky web spun by those twin life sucking spiders.

 

One of the things important for any believer to understand is how fear and shame impact our identity.  Whether I could verbalize it or not growing up, too often I envisioned God sitting on the clouds, waiting to throw thunderbolts at my every sin. I looked at my own shortfalls and could only imagine a God who was frustrated with humanity, especially my humanity. Why wouldn’t He punish me or be disappointed in me? That would make total sense.

It’s uncanny how we allow fear to seep in. Fear of failure. Fear of change. Fear of being found out. Fear of being misunderstood. Fear of judgment.

Fear leads to shame. Shame causes us to doubt. We begin to doubt God’s love and we begin to doubt God’s grace. Ultimately, we begin to doubt read more

a href=’http://www.faithgateway.com/gospel-identity-overcoming-fear-shame/’ title=’Read more’ …/a

Source: Gospel Identity: Overcoming Fear and Shame – FaithGateway

God’s Grace

Today’s devotional provides some wonderful insight into God’s grace. Not what some call “greasy grace”, but an aspect of grace that is both comforting and encouraging while not giving place to intentional sin.

“We must not see grace as a provision made after the law had failed. Grace was offered before the law was revealed. Indeed, grace was offered before man was created! “You were bought, not with something that ruins like gold or silver, but with the precious blood of Christ, who was like a pure and perfect lamb. Christ was chosen before the world was made, but he was shown to the world in these last times for your sake” (1 Pet. 1:18–20 NCV).

Why would God offer grace before we needed it? Glad you asked. Let’s return one final time to the charge card my father gave me. Did I mention that I went several months without needing it? But when I needed it, read more 

devotional reposted from biblegateway.com

 

Knock and the Door Will Be Opened

Today’s devotional encourages us to ask, seek, and knock because God will surely answer. He doesn’t play favorites and invites all to come.

 

Editors Note: This is an excerpt from 52 Little Lessons from Les Misérables. Bob Welch walks readers through Hugo’s masterpiece, extracting dozens of uniquely spiritual reflections from this enduring portrait of poverty, social injustice, mercy, and redemption.  Have you knocked at that one there? – A woman in Digne who takes pity on Valjean In Digne as aa href=’http://www.faithgateway.com/knock-door-opened/’ title=’Read more’ …/a

Source: Knock and the Door Will Be Opened

Rx for Fatigue

Today’s devotional by Max Lucado suggests an Rx for the weariness and fatigue that plagues many. Read with us and discover this amazing remedy.

 

The Cause of Your Fatigue

“I know the cause of your fatigue. You need to trust God’s grace.

Follow the example of the Chilean miners. Trapped beneath two thousand feet of solid rock, the thirty-three men were desperate. The collapse of a main tunnel had sealed their exit and thrust them into survival mode. They ate two spoonfuls of tuna, a sip of milk, and a morsel of peaches — every other day. For two months they prayed for someone to save them.

On October 13, 2010, the men began to emerge, slapping high fives and leading victory chants. A great-grandfather. A forty-four-year-old who was planning a wedding. Then a nineteen-year-old. All had different stories, but all had made the same decision. They trusted someone else to save them. No one returned the rescue offer with a declaration of independence: “I can get out of here on my own. Just give me a new drill.” They had stared at the stone tomb long enough to reach the unanimous opinion: “We need help. We need someone to penetrate this world and pull us out.” And when the rescue capsule came, they climbed in.

Why is it so hard for us to do the same?hammock

We find it easier to trust the miracle of resurrection than the miracle of grace. We so fear failure that we create the image of perfection, lest heaven be even more disappointed in us than we are. The result? The weariest people on earth.

Attempts at self-salvation guarantee nothing but exhaustion. We scamper and scurry, trying to please God, collecting merit badges and brownie points, and scowling at anyone who questions our accomplishments. Call us the church of hound-dog faces and slumped shoulders.

Stop it! Once and for all, enough of this frenzy. “Your hearts should be strengthened by God’s grace, not by obeying rules” (Heb. 13:9 NCV). Jesus does not say, “Come to me, all you who are perfect and sinless.” Just the opposite. “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest” (Matt. 11:28 NASB).

There is no fine print. A second shoe is not going to drop. God’s promise has no hidden language. Let grace happen, for heaven’s sake. No more performing for God, no more clamoring after God. Of all the things you must earn in life, God’s unending affection is not one of them. You have it. Stretch yourself out in the hammock of grace.

You can rest now.”

(c) 2016 Max Lucado Used with permission  maxlucado.com

Feeling Overwhelmed?

Perhaps you are feeling overwhelmed by just stuff. Perhaps you’re doing mighty fine. Either way this devotional will speak encouragement to you. If you don’t feel like you need it today you can tuck it away for a rainy day. Reposted from Holley Gerth’s blog.

i am with you“I sit on the back porch and stare out over open space. The scene is serene but inside my mind it’s a different story. I think of all that’s coming then I whisper these words, “I don’t know if I can do this.”

I don’t know if I have the strength.

I don’t know if I have the perseverance.

I don’t know if I have the wisdom.

Have you ever felt that way too?

Thankfully when Jesus said we could do all things through Him it included this. It included right now.

We don’t have to be strong because He says, “I will strengthen you and help you.” {Is. 41:10}

We don’t have to do this alone because He promises, “I will be with you…because I love you.” {Is 43:2-4}

We don’t have to figure everything out because He assures us, “I will teach you the way you should go.” {Ps. 32:8}

This is the secret that can empower us on the days when we feel overwhelmed, the truth we can hold on to when we get discouraged, the wild mystery that lifts life’s weight from our shoulders: It’s not about what we have in us; it’s about Who. Nothing is impossible for Him–which means with Him nothing is impossible for us too.”

(c) 2016 Holley Gerth Used with permission  http://holleygerth.com/feeling-overwhelmed/

Do-Over

dooverHave you ever wished that you had the prerogative of a “do-over” in your life? Just holler “CUT!” and re-do the entire scene – now wouldn’t that be nice! However, since this is not the case in real life we something to help us navigate the aftermath of our mistakes, bad decisions, and sin. This something can be found in the grace of God. While God doesn’t provide “do-overs” He does make a way for us to wipe the proverbial slate clean and start fresh. Here is a great article from the magazine Vital  that will help get you on your way. Please read here with me. If you would like help appropriating this in your life visit us Sundays at 10:30 AM or Wednesday nights at 7 PM at 4335 Laurel Street or contact us at 907-349-0255 or info@akjoy.com

Mistake to Masterpiece

If you’ve ever had an “oops” moment in your life when you were convinced that you’d messed things up permanently this devotional reposted from Max Lucado will bring you hope today.

 

From Mistake to Masterpiece

“Over a hundred years ago, a group of fishermen were relaxing in the dining room of a Scottish seaside inn, trading fish stories. One of the men gestured widely, depicting the size of a fish that got away. His arm struck the serving maid’s tea tray, sending the teapot flying into the whitewashed wall, where its contents left an irregular brown splotch.

The innkeeper surveyed the damage and sighed, “The whole wall will have to be repainted.”

“Perhaps not,” offered a stranger. “Let me work with it.”

Having nothing to lose, the proprietor consented. The man pulled pencils, brushes, some jars of linseed oil, and pigment out of an art box. He sketched lines around the stains and dabbed shades and colors throughout the splashes of tea. In time, an image began to emerge: a stag with a great rack of antlers. The man inscribed his signature at the bottom, paid for his meal, and left. His name: Sir Edwin Landseer, famous painter of wildlife.

In his hands, a mistake became a masterpiece. God’s hands do the same, over and over. He draws together the disjointed blotches in our life and renders them an expression of his love. We become pictures, “examples of the incredible wealth of his favor and kindness toward us” (Eph. 2:7 NLT).

Receive God’s work. Drink deeply from his well of grace.”

(c) 2015 Max Lucado Used with Permission maxlucado.com