Drawing Strength

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. – (Ephesians 6:10, NIV)

Last of all I want to remind you that your strength must come from the Lord’s mighty power within you. – (Ephesians 6:10, TLB)

Finally, brothers and sisters, draw your strength and might from God. – (Ephesians 6:10, VOICE)

 

For whatever reason, be it the full moon, the constant fog each morning, spirit week at school, Halloween drawing near – whatever it is, there has been an abundance of energy and distraction in the classroom so far this week, and two days have felt like an entire week. In my own strength, I would have had to tap out about halfway through Monday. However, when I seek the true Source of strength and rely on His power already placed within me, I am equipped and empowered to press on. It does not mean that it is easy or that all is smooth sailing, but it does assure me that He is present and He will not leave me alone, even on the most trying of days. Though yesterday was rough, I had the strength I needed to navigate the day and was slightly less weary than the day prior. As I continue to draw my strength from He who is my strength, I trust that all I need will be supplied. He is faithful forever and I will trust in Him. May we ever be strong in the Lord, who is our strength, for He will grant us what we need to navigate each new day.

 

Let us remember, Rest from the Heaviness

Where true strength comes from;

From when our day starts,

To when it is done.

Faithful forever,

The Lord will be near;

To supply our needs,

Our requests, He hears.

Trust in the Lord’s grace,

His power and might;

The strength that He gives,

To fight the good fight.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that we can call on You to be our strength and You are faithful to supply what we need for each new day. Forgive us for attempting to “power through” on our own, rather than seeking You. Teach us to trust You more, so that we would come to know Your faithful provision of power when we feel powerless. Show us how to love those around us in a way that strengthens and lifts up those who are weary. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we trust in You and Your strength to successfully navigate our days. Amen.

 

 

© Shannon Elizabeth Grabrick and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

 

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

Two Unchangeable Things

So God has given both His promise and His oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to Him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us. – (Hebrews 6:18, NLT)

These two things cannot change: God cannot lie when He says something, and He cannot lie when He makes an oath. So these two things are a great help to us who have come to God for safety. They encourage us to hold on to the hope that is ours. – (Hebrews 6:18, ERV)

 

People are fallible. It is human nature to err and let others down. Not one of us is without flaw, nor has kept from disappointing another. Though it is rarely our intent, we fall short. However, God does not. Whatever God says, He does. His word is true and it will not change. In Christ, our hope is secure and our future is certain. No, God does not typically give us a play-by-play plan of what is to come, but He does assure us that He will walk beside us, and never leave us, no matter what comes our way. Ultimately, we know that if our hearts trust in Him, we will spend all of eternity in the security of His presence and the light of His love. The challenge lies in our desire to have tangible comfort and security, when we cannot directly see God. So often, when we seek Him first, He will provide people around us to be His hands, heart, and voice to remind us what is true, and to offer comfort where our souls are unsteady. May we ever trust in God, who is our Refuge and where our hope comes from. Let us hold fast to the hope that is promised and will not change, both now and forevermore.

 

Our God has given,Rediscovering Dreams

Both promise and oath;

That He will not change,

Granting our hearts hope.

He is our refuge,

To whom we can run;

The One who is true,

When each day is done.

Let us be assured,

Of the hope we hold;

In God we’re secure,

Forever foretold.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You have given us both Your promise and Your oath, and that these two things are unchangeable because You cannot lie. Thank You that we can run to You as our Refuge in confidence, as we have the assurance of the hope that we know is certain of our eternity with You. Forgive us for placing human parameters on You, and teach us to trust You and Your infinite power and wisdom with all that we are. Help us to run to You in all things, with assurance that You will keep Your promise to be our present help. Show us how to love those around us in a way that reflects Your heart best. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we run to You as our refuge, and hold onto the hope that is ours in You. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy. – Hebrews 4:16

Given Despite What We Deserve

“We deserve to die for our crimes, but this man hasn’t done anything wrong.” Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your Kingdom.”

And Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.” – (Luke 23:41-43, NLT)

 

This scene so perfectly depicts the mercy and grace that God is willing to give if we choose Him. Like the criminals hanging on the cross beside Jesus, we all deserve to die for our sin. Not one of us is sinless, and the promised punishment for sin is death. However, while we were yet stuck in our sin, just as those hanging beside Him, Jesus chose to bear the burden for all so that we could come to Him to have life everlasting. All it took for the criminal in his final hours of life, was the recognition and admission of who Jesus was, and how he deserved what he himself was receiving. In asking to be remembered, the criminal was granted the mercy and grace that is given to each of us who choose to do the same. When we come to Christ and call on His Name, admit that we are sinners in need of a Savior who are seeking His forgiveness and grace, He grants us the very same promise of eternal life that was given on that most remarkable day. May we remember the price Christ paid for our sins, and the love that leads us to life everlasting.

 

Criminal status,Shackles No More

All of us with sin;

Each destined to die,

‘less grace enters in.

Because of the cross,

We all can choose claim;

Christ as our Savior,

Find hope in His Name.

For it is by grace,

That we all may come;

Receive His mercy,

O Most Holy One.

So come one and all,

Seek mercy and grace;

Receive forgiveness,

Everlasting place.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You sent Your Son to make the way for us to be restored to right relationship with You. Jesus, thank You for willingly taking our sin upon Yourself, so that we could be made righteous before You. Thank You for loving us despite our unworthiness. Forgive us for thinking that we or anyone else has to be qualified somehow to deserve mercy and grace. Teach us to love as You love, so that we would offer mercy and grace to all whom we meet. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we love others as You have loved us. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present

Your righteousness reaches to the skies, O God, You who have done great things. Who, O God, is like You? – Psalm 71:19

Blessed are the Forgiven

“Blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord will never count against him.” – (Romans 4:7-8)

 

This freedom of being fully forgiven comes only through faith in Christ. It is not something that we can earn nor somehow convince ourselves is true. As we admit our guilt to God and ask for His forgiveness, He comes close and helps our hearts hold fast to the truth that the guilt is gone because Christ has already paid the price. Often our side of the equation takes much repetition, despite our sins being erased the first time we came before the Lord with repentant hearts. The guilt may cause us to repeat the process of returning again and again to our knees in prayer, asking God to assure us of the truth. Thankfully, the Lord is patient and kind, and He loves us so much that He is willing to remind us each time we come before Him, that we are covered and clean, and that His love for us endures forever. For those who have come before Christ and confessed their transgressions with a repentant heart, He has forgiven. Blessed is what we can be called – for our future is secure, as we know where our hope is held both now and forevermore. May we rise up and remember that our guilt is gone and we are considered blessed as we go forth this day.

 

For those who confess,Forgiveness is Free

their sins to the Lord;

are considered blessed,

by God, we’re adored.

Forgiven and free,

no longer with shame;

for our sins are gone,

through hope in His Name.

All that once caused guilt,

has been wiped away;

the Lord won’t look back,

life starts new each day.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that when we come to You and confess our sins with repentant hearts, You forgive us and never count our sins against us. Thank You that we are considered blessed, because we are forgiven and renewed in You. Forgive us for returning again and again to that which You have already forgiven, or for not confessing things that are weighing on our hearts. Teach us to trust You more, so that we will bring all before You as it comes. Lead us to love with goodness and grace, just as You so graciously love each of us. May many come into a lasting relationship with You, Lord. Be exalted O God, as we walk confidently in the freedom that You have granted us through Your forgiveness and grace, so that we may share the blessing with all who need to see Your face. Amen.

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.

Because of the tender mercy of our God, …the rising sun will come to us from heaven. – Luke 1:78

Our Defense

Our DefenseThough trials will come,

we shall worry not;

how we might defend,

the battle’s been fought.

For wisdom will come,

He’ll provide the words;

to surely defend,

His voice shall be heard.

Invest in the Lord,

let Him guide our time;

as He strengthens hearts,

and empowers minds.

Hold fast to His word,

for His word is life;

it heals the broken,

and silences strife.

Though storms still shall rage,

we have a safe space;

as we trust in Him,

we’re held fast in grace.

“But make up your mind not to worry beforehand how you will defend yourselves. For I will give you words and wisdom that none of your adversaries will be able to resist or contradict.” – (Luke 21:14-15)

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You are our safe space in the midst of storms, and that You provide all that we need to be sustained in Your strength. Thank You for Your word and Your Holy Spirit, that lead and guide us in the here and now. Forgive us for our fears of future events, and help us to rest assured in the promise that You will never leave us nor forsake us. Help us to fix our eyes on the eternal, rather than that which is fleeting. May our hope be held securely in You, and may we live and love in such a way, that those who know You not, will come to seek and find You. Let Your light shine bright through us, even in the darkest of days. Amen.

This song kept going through my head and heart as I wrote this morning. Please click the link to enjoy Matt Maher’s Lord, I Need You. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JIOtQyVHBlc

© Shannon Elizabeth Moreno and Revelations in Writing, May 2011 – present.