Overcoming Power

“He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead! Remember what He told you back in Galilee, that the son of Man must be betrayed into the hands of sinful men and be crucified, and that He would rise again on the third day.” – (Luke 24:6-7, NLT)

 

Grief does funny things to our ability to think clearly. I can only begin to imagine the weight of the sorrow shared by those who had walked closely beside Jesus, prior to His crucifixion. Despite His having told those dear to Him what had to happen, and what would happen after, if they were anything like most of us, they probably could not grasp anything beyond His having to die. Even more surreal to see in one’s mind, is the arrival at the empty tomb. What began as shock, horror, and perhaps even outrage that Jesus’ body was missing, was quickly turned to worshipful awe, as they were greeted by angels who told them what had happened. It had to have been quite a sight to see, if the first words from those whom God had sent, was, “Don’t be afraid.” I envision it being a two-fold extension of kindness. Don’t be afraid of us, and do not be afraid of what you do not see. It did not take long for the truth that they had been told prior to Jesus’ death to be recalled, and suddenly, everything changed. Mourning turned to gladness, and sorrow surrendered to great joy! Jesus had risen! May we rise this day and remember the reason for the festivities. The Light of the world defeated death and conquered the grave so that we could have life everlasting in Him.

 

Two days of darkness,Hope in an Empty Tomb

Then third day, He rose;

Defeating the grave,

All hope to disclose.

Greeted by angels,

At the empty tomb;

Awe and amazement,

Minds blown at the truth.

Though He had foretold,

Was hard to believe;

No more was Christ dead,

He’d risen indeed.

What joy they had found,

Their sorrow, no more;

Jesus has risen,

Worship and adore!

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You did not stop at the death on the cross on our behalf, but You showed us Your power as You defeated death and overcame the grave so that we could have life everlasting in You. Thank You that the very same power that conquered the grave is available to all who trust in You. Forgive us for allowing our circumstances to defeat our resolve, rather than turning to trust in You. Teach us to trust You more, as You alone have the power to carry us through every circumstance. Show us how to live and love boldly, as we have been given all that we need to love as You love us. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we trust You to fill us so that we may live and love in the overcoming power You place in each of us. Amen.

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

Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him. – Psalm 54:8

The Power of Perfect Love

And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today or our worries about tomorrow – not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. – (Romans 8:38, NLT)

 

There is NOTHING more powerful than the love of God. His love covers fears, conquers giants, defeats death, and draws us unto Himself when we feel far away from Him. The more we embrace the grace that He has granted and seek to know Him more, the greater our understanding of just how powerful God’s love is, and how there truly is nothing that can take it away from us. May we extend our hands and hearts to the Lord, and allow His love to wash over all that attempts to separate us from Him. He is good, and His love endures forever.

 

The love of the Lord,given-to-show-goodness

Shall overcome all;

It’s greater than death,

Lifts up when we fall.

There’s no height nor depth,

Nor place we can go;

Where the love of God,

Cannot freely flow.

Far greater is He,

Who calls our hearts home;

Than opposition,

Both seen and unknown.

Worry not today,

Nor for that to come;

God’s love is greater,

The battle’s been won.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that NOTHING can ever separate us from Your love. Thank You that Your love has defeated death and fuels our faith to forge forward, even in the face of fear. Forgive us for our fears and doubt when trials come our way. Teach us to trust You more, so that we would hold fast to the truth that You are far greater than anything that may try to come against us. Show us how to love those around us in a way that demonstrates the power of Your limitless love. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we receive the love that You give that cannot be removed. Amen.

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

Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him. – Psalm 34:8

Peace in Times of Trouble

“I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” – (John 16:33)  

Jesus spoke plainly to the disciples about what was going to happen on the night He was to be betrayed, and let them know why He was leaving and to Whom He was being sent. Despite the darkness that was about to befall the disciples as they would watch their Savior and friend walk the long and agonizing road to the cross alone; Jesus assured them that it would not be the end. His assurance was played out in the most miraculous way ever recorded. Jesus defeated death, after bearing the brunt of all of our sin and shame. He rose again, appeared to many, and then returned to the Father so that He could send His Holy Spirit to be our Counselor. Jesus truly overcame the world, and in Him, we too, can overcome any obstacle that comes our way. His peace is available for us, and His strength in steady supply. To take heart is to place our trust in Him and allow Him to lead us, no matter what season we are walking through. He is faithful and He has already overcome all that lies before us. May we rise up in faith and take heart, for our Heavenly Father is holding us in the hollow of His hand.

Jesus has told us,His Mighty Power

a number of things;

so we may find peace,

that only He brings.

Though we’ll have trouble,

He won’t let us fall;

the Lord’s overcome,

He’s conquered it all.

Let’s rise up in faith,

in Christ, take a stand;

for the Lord is good,

we’re held in His hand.

Strength for the weary,

so we won’t grow faint;

His Spirit in us,

let’s trust in His Name.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You give us Your word that tells us what is good and true and lovely. Thank You that when we seek You, we find You and come to know Your peace. Thank You that despite the trouble that we all face, we have the blessed assurance that ultimately, in You, we will overcome. Thank You that we are more than conquerors in You. Forgive us for forgetting how near and powerful You are when the waves begin to overwhelm us. Teach us to slow down, and fix our eyes on You, rather than the storm that surrounds us, so that we may see what really is the truth. Lead us to love others well, so that they too may come to know Your peace and provision in such a way, that they turn to You forever. Be glorified O God, as we take heart in You, learning to lean into Your peace as You lead us to overcome all that comes against us. Amen.

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

He who refreshes others will himself be refreshed. – Proverbs 11:25

Resolve in His Strength

The devil said to Him, “If you are the Son of God, tell this stone to become bread.” – (Luke 4:3)

 

“Often we are tempted not through our weaknesses, but through our strengths. The devil tempted Jesus where He was strong. Jesus had power over stones, the kingdoms of the world, and even angels, and Satan wanted Him to use that power without regard to His mission. When we give in to the devil and wrongly use our strengths, we become proud and self-reliant. Trusting in our own powers, we feel little need of God. To avoid this trap, we must realize that all our strengths are God’s gift to us, and we must dedicate those strengths to His service.” – (NIV footnotes for Luke 4:3)

 

For me, this is a timely reminder. Even when we desire to do good things, if we attempt to overbook ourselves, rather than rely on His leading, we end up overextending ourselves and going in our own strength, rather than in His. Though I seem to require less sleep than most, exhaustion will catch me if I do not listen to His leading, and learn to say no when He says, “Not now.” The desires to do good and gifts to utilize that He grants us are wonderful, however, it is critical that we listen to His leading so that we do not become self-reliant nor proud. Christ extends His grace and grows in us His wisdom, so each time that we encounter opportunities, we better learn to listen to Him for clear direction. May we go forth in His strength, so that we overcome every temptation that is placed before us, and learn to clearly listen to His leading.

 

Temptations shall come,MSH35

where they don’t belong;

they hit where we’re weak,

and too, where we’re strong.

Often the greatest,

temptations of all;

are where we are strong,

pride will bring a fall.

Let us remember,

our true Source of strength;

and trust in His might,

that covers great lengths.

Every good gift,

that we have to give;

was given to us,

so others might live.

May we honor Christ,

go forth and obey;

listen well and serve,

for all of our days.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You sent Your Son into the world to show us how to live. Thank You Jesus, that You died in our place and defeated death, and sent Your Spirit to live in us, so that we would be strengthened and equipped to stand firm and walk in Your truth. Forgive us for our self-reliance and foolish pride, and help us to listen to Your leading as to what we should and should not do, even when the options before us are all good things. Teach us to trust You more, so that we will stand firm, no matter what comes our way. Help us to love others as You so completely care for us, and may many come to know You as their Savior and King as a result. Be glorified, O God, as we overcome temptations in Your strength today. Amen.

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

For it is commendable if a man bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because he is conscious of God. – 1 Peter 2:19

To Hold Hope

Revelation 15-18, today’s portion of scripture in my personal reading plan, continues to cover the calamities yet to come at the end of days.  For those who are in Christ, our hope and future are secure; yet those who know Him not, or have turned away from Him – devastation awaits.  His grace is greater than all of our sin and failures, and He waits with open arms, for all who choose to call on His Name.

As this particular passage unfolds, it foretells of horrific happenings yet to come.  However, in the midst of the devastation and destruction, we are reminded again, of Who will win, and that all who identify with Christ, will also be secure.  “They will wage war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will triumph over them because He is Lord of lords and King of kings – and with Him will be His called, chosen and faithful followers.” – (Revelation 17:14)  

No one ever promised that this life would be an easy one.  In fact, Christ assured us that trouble would come.  “I have told you these things so you may have peace in Me.  In the world you will have much trouble.  But take hope!  I have power over the world!” – (John 16:33 NLV)  Despite the challenges and heartache, in Him, we have hope and security, knowing with total assurance that He is always with us, and that our future is certain and our space secured in our eternal home with Him.  Enduring all things with Him, is well worth our eternal reward.  For the day will come, when there is no more suffering, nor pain, nor tears – only light, life, peace, joy, and glorious Presence.

Times of trouble,

shall certainly come;To Hold Hope

do not dismay,

if you love the Son.

For though wars wage,

His peace shall be ours;

if we’re in Him,

He’ll be where we are.

Fear not the day,

when peace is no more;

if found in Him,

our future’s secure.

Take hope, dear friends,

for the Light is here;

ever present,

let us all draw near.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You have overcome all that we are facing, and defeated death, so that we might live eternally with You.  Forgive us for our fearfulness, and help us to grow in confidence in Your faithfulness to all who trust in You.  Help us to hold fast to our hope in You, and may Your peace be present in us, even when chaos surrounds us.  May we love others as You love us, and may many come into a saving relationship with You as we prepare to press into a brand new year.  Let Your light shine through us in all that we say and do.  May Your majesty be made evident through our every action.  Amen.

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

Power to Prevail

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
The critical blow,

came to Satan’s stand;

as they drove the nails,

in our Savior’s hands.

Though not yet silent,

the accuser’s voice;

may be shut, silenced,

if we make the choice.

In Christ, we’re given,

the authority;

to overcome sin,

we have been set free.

So let not the fear,

that old devil’s charge;

overwhelm our hearts,

for God’s strength is large.

We have what we need,

to be brave, stand firm;

may we claim the truth,

watch the devil squirm.

Far greater is He,

who dwells in us all;

than the accuser,

from heaven did fall.

Stand up in power,

let His truth be told;

all that’s against us,

shall cower and fold.

(Responding to Revelation 12:10-12)

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that death was defeated on the day Your Son surrendered His soul on the cross, and then rose again. Thank You that the very same power that defeated death, dwells in us, by Your Holy Spirit, when we choose to follow You. Forgive us for fearing the fire that flies around us, and help us to hold fast to Your truth. May we be bold in the face of that which is fearful, and let our love grow stronger each day. As we walk with You, may many see Your strength in us, and grow in their desire to be led in Your light through our love. Be glorified God, in all that we say and do. Amen.

Faithful fighter - Anne

Faithful fighter – Anne

Anne update: Yesterday evening, I had the pleasure of taking Anne to the mall to find some warmer clothes that fit. We had a minor snafu, as a wheelchair was unavailable until an hour into our shopping adventure. She was one determined lady, so we took it slow, and rested often. By the end of the evening, we had found her some wonderful and warm clothes that will work well. Thank You for continuing to be faithful to pray for Anne’s complete healing. Blessings to you all, beloved friends.
Held in His hands, Shannon

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

Defeating Death

Defeating DeathOutside the tomb

she stood and wept;

the Lord was gone,

from body kept.

Empty the grave,

’til angels seen;

they asked her what

her tears did mean.

“My Lord is gone,

where did He go?”

In her great grief,

she did not know.

Though Jesus stood,

before her eyes;

grief blinded her –

not realized.

Then Jesus spoke,

called her by name;

His voice she knew,

Rabboni* claimed.

Before her stood,

her joy complete;

Jesus returned,

no death defeat.

Mary took news,

truth to proclaim,

“He is alive,

I’m not the same!”

(Responding to John 20:10-18)

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for Your great love for us. A love so great that it conquered death, even death on a cross. Thank You Jesus, that Your story does not end at the crucifixion, but rather You rose again and appeared to many, so that we might come to know and have life – a life abundant in Your grace and Your power. Forgive us for not always responding as Mary did. For not only did she immediately recognize Your voice, but she then quickly responded to carry out what You had called her to do. Teach us to trust You and to listen well, so that we may hear Your voice and be quick to respond. May our obedience to share Your story, written in our own lives, lead many to come to know Your love for themselves. Thank You that the very same power that defeated death that day, is still alive and available to us today. Be glorified in all that we do and say. Amen.

*Rabboni – Teach in Aramaic

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

The Saga of that Somber Day

Agony

Withdrawal

Prayer

Disappointment

Prayer

Frustration

Submission

Betrayal

Healing

Denied, denied, denied

Mocked

Beaten

Insulted

Questioned.  Answered.

Accused

Questioned.  Replied.

Justified

Slandered

Sent away

Questioned

Accused

Ridiculed

Robed

Returned

Presented

Exchanged

Sentenced

Surrendered

Burdened

Crucified

Mocked

Defended

Believed

Accepted

Taunted

Forgave

Darkness

Torn

Committed

Received

Finished.

(Responding to Luke 22:47-23:46)

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Your only Son for us.  Jesus, thank You for enduring the excruciating

image by 123rf.com

image by 123rf.com

separation and the weight of the world’s sin, for our sake.  Thank You that the story does not end in darkness and death, but we look forward to Sunday, knowing that You alone defeated death and rose again, so that we might come to know new life.  May we recognize the gravity of this day, yet not lose sight of the joy and hope held in You, our overcoming One.  May many come to know You this week, as so many are willing to walk into church and will hear Your word.  Let Your love, light and hope be heard, held and received.  Amen.

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

What Shall I Bring?

image by His Heart Scribe

image by His Heart Scribe

All praise to Him,

shall we declare.

Burden Bearer,

comfort and care.

Daily we bring,

cares to lay down;

and in exchange –

the victor’s crown.

Our God who saves,

preserves our life.

Defeated death,

conquered all strife.

Loving Father,

and reigning King,

What can I offer?

What might I bring?

All that He wants,

is my whole heart.

To gain and give love,

each day a new start.

Psalm 68:19-20 – “Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens.  Our God is a God who saves; from the Sovereign Lord comes escape from death.”

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that it is not about us doing certain things just so, to be deemed worthy to come before You; but rather, You want a heart that is seeking You, our Savior, despite the brokenness and ugliness that we bear.  Teach us to passionately pursue You with our whole heart, and forgive us for holding back.  Lead us to live lives that are an ongoing act of worshipping You in spirit and truth.  Let our lives be a song that resonates in the hearts of all those who might hear, so that many may be guided in grace unto Your loving embrace.  Be glorified through all that we say and do.  Amen.

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