"But He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you..." 1 Corin. 12:9

Friday, October 25, 2013

Ch.3 Finding Love That Won't Fail Even When We Do

Proverbs 36:7  "How priceless is Your unfailing love, O God!  People take refuge in the shadow of Your wings."

Gleanings from Renee:

"You've been trying to earn your value in everything you've done.  But you will never find the love you long for in anyone or anything but Me.  I AM the unconditional love you are looking for."  p.51

"Until our hearts find complete security and significance in God's unconditional love, we will never be satisfied....Those of us who struggle with insecurity and find ourselves in the 'shadow of doubt' often get there because we are seeking our validation in people's opinions, our worth in accomplishments, and our identity in excessive commitments."  p.52

"You see, God put a longing for unfailing love in our hearts because He knew it would lead us back to Him.  Only God's unfailing love will fill and fulfill the desires of our hearts.  It is the deepest thirst of our souls.  Until God's love is enough, nothing else will be."  p.55

"By recognizing and replacing our emptiness with the fullness of God's promises, we drink the gift of living water."  p.60

"Jesus came to give us more than salvation, He wants us to experience complete satisfaction in Him....Salvation is a one-time decision, but finding satisfaction in Christ and living in the security of His promises is a daily process."  p.61

"We were made for love that isn't measured by our last accomplishment but marked by God's measureless grace."  p.62


It is SO easy for me to measure who I am or how much I am worth by how much I accomplish at home or by how much I pour myself into serving at church.  In my crazy humanity, I do things because I love Jesus while at the same time longing for a pat on the back.  I want Him to get full recognition, but my flesh wants recognition as well.  It is a continual battle between trying to do things for an audience of One and laying down my deep-seated need for approval. 

Why is anyone's approval but His even necessary to me?  This is the question I'm praying through and seeking an answer for.  I am praying for the knowledge that He is ENOUGH to descend from my head to my heart.

My prayer is to be so full of Jesus' love and love for Jesus that service just occurs and my flesh is crucified.    I want my actions to be guided only by what pleases Him.  And I want them to be motivated by love for Him, not by trying to 'earn' His favor.  I'm afraid this battle won't be over for good til I go home, but conquering the need to find my worth outside of Christ is certainly my goal.

Like C.S. Lewis says, "Don't shine so others can see you.  Shine so that through you, others can see Him."

Monday, September 30, 2013

God's Love is Perfect!

1 John 4:18-19  "There is no fear in love.  But perfect love casts out fear, because fear has to do with punishment.  The one who fears is not made perfect in love."

Wow!  Am I sure not perfect!  Overcoming fear of punishment is something I continually struggle with.  Whenever I do something wrong, I think I'm more concerned and scared about whether or not I will get in trouble with people than I am about the wrong thing I did and displeasing Him Whom I love.  That is not right!

Not that I am not sorry for whatever it might be.  But, I get all worked up because of the fear of punishment.  I'm supposed to not be worried about what 'man' can do to me.  Hmmm.

I am trying to get to the bottom of why I do this, with the Lord's help.  I know all the intellectually correct answers, but I know the truth hasn't found its way throughout the deep recesses of my heart yet. 

Today, as I've been thinking and praying about this, I realized it is a symptom of unbelief.  I am not believing God's Holy Word as I should.  It is His promise that I am forgiven  (1John 1:9; Eph. 1:7-8).  It is His promise that He will never leave me or forsake me (Joshua 1:5,9; Hebrews 13:5b).  It is His promise that He will help me (Hebrews 13:6; Isaiah 41:10; Psalm 121).  He never said he would only help me if I never sin or make a mistake.  So I should be able to walk in CONFIDENCE.  

I need to whip out these promises and stand on them when the accuser plagues my mind w/ my sins and/or mistakes.  Or, when I'm beating myself up, which I have a bad habit of.

I hope, as I get into the new study, that I will grow in all these areas.  That is my sincere prayer.  I'm on a journey, and it's in progress.  I'm so glad He's promised to see me through to completion (Phil. 1:6)!!!

I am intent on VICTORY and FREEDOM!!!

So many Christian blog posts seem to be about how a problem concluded and is over.  I don't find that mine get 'over' so much as that I just keep growing.  But I press on...

Saturday, September 28, 2013


"So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.  You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what He has promised."  Hebrews 10:35-36

As believers, we do not need to live in doubt.  We need to live in HOPE, hope in our God and in His good purposes for us.

Isaiah 49:23b says, "Those who hope in Me will not be disappointed."

This does not mean we will have no trouble or that all life is pleasant.  However, He will be with us and bring us through every trial.  To maintain hope in these times, we must cling to His promises as laid out in His Word as being more true than anything we think, hear, see, or feel.  This base of trust and hope will flush away doubt and anxiety. 

We can pray His promises and have confidence that these prayers are in His will and, therefore, will be answered.

In A Confident Heart, Renee Swope says, "We'll do the most important thing first:  spend time digging deep into the heart and character of God so we can learn to depend on His heart toward us."  (p.24)

Friday, September 27, 2013

A Confident Heart - on-line Bible study

Soon, over at Proverbs31 Ministries, I will be starting their upcoming on-line Bible study.  The book, The Confident Heart, is by Renee Swope.  The formal study runs from October 13th-December 14th.  If I can't keep up, it may take me longer.  But, that is OK.

Some of the chapter titles that I'm most intrigued by are:
       Finding Love That Won't Fail Even When I Do
       When Doubt Whispers, "I'm Such a Failure"
       The Woman I Want to Be

I hope to put gleanings from my study on here, if I can find the time.  It may not be much, but...