The Depth of His Grace

Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. – (Philippians 1:6, NIV)

I am sure that the good work God began in you will continue until He completes it on the day when Jesus Christ comes again. – (Philippians 1:6, ERV)

I pray with great faith for you, because I’m fully convinced that the One who began this gracious work in you will faithfully continue the process of maturing you until the unveiling of our Lord Jesus Christ! – (Philippians 1:6, TPT)

I am so thankful for the truth of God’s word. No matter where we are in life or what chapter of our journey we are on, God is not finished with us yet. Not one of us ever “arrives”, but rather He is ever growing and refining us so that we may more clearly reflect Him to those around us. There is much comfort in this. The more I age, the more I find myself acutely aware of the areas that I need God to grow me more. Yes, I can see how far He has brought me, yet I know there is so much more in Him. May we ever seek the Lord and submit our all unto Him, for He will continue every good thing that He has begun in us until the day we meet Him face-to-face.

The God of all grace,

Continues in love;

To transform our hearts,

Reflect our Beloved.

The work is not done,

‘Til we breathe our last;

Teaching us much more,

Healing from the past.

And then on that day,

When we see His face;

We’ll come understand,

The depth of His grace.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for the good work You have begun in all of us. Thank You that You are not finished refining and transforming us until the day You appear. Thank You that Your grace is greater than our every shortcoming. Forgive us for our faults and failures. Teach us to trust You and submit all in Your hands. Show us how to love all those around us in the same way that You love. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we praise You and give You all of our gratitude that You are not finished with us yet. Amen.

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

Out of His fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given. – John 1:16

Imagine the Hope

However, as it is written: “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived” – the things God has prepared for those who love Him. – (1 Corinthians 2:9, NIV)

But as the Scriptures say, “No one has ever seen, no one has ever heard, no one has ever imagined what God has prepared for those who love Him.” – (1 Corinthians 2:9, ERV)

But as the Scriptures say, No eye has ever seen and no ear has ever heard and it has never occurred to the human heart all the things God prepared for those who love Him. – (1 Corinthians 2:9, VOICE)

In my lifetime thus far, I have beheld the incredible beauty of God’s creation in numerous places around the globe. I have heard singing that moved my heart and mind to the incredible majesty of our Maker, and I have imagined a place where peace, love and joy abound and pain and sorrow are no longer found; yet, my experience and imagination do not even begin to compare to that which lies ahead. God has prepared a place for all who love and call on His Name, to join with Him for forever. This is what brings peace and comfort in seasons of loss or seeming hopelessness. Though we may not see it now, there is a place that has been prepared for us that is beyond our wildest dreams. Beloved friends and family members who have gone before me, are already there. Despite the grief from loss in the here and now, there is such hope, peace, comfort and joy in what is promised for eternity. May we ever seek to learn and grow in our love for the Lord, as He reveals more and more of who He is and how His love shall not end. His promised future for us is hope that we can cling to, no matter how the here and now appear.

Lord, show us the hope,

That is found in You;

Forever granted,

To all who love true.

The seeking shall find,

True joy that is found;

Blessed assurance,

Great faith that abounds.

Imagine a place,

A future so bright;

No sorrow or grief,

Just joy and delight.

The lasting presence,

Of God up above;

Preparing a place,

Abounding in love.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You have prepared a place for all those who love You that exceeds our wildest imaginations. Thank You that the beauty and majesty that we have seen, heard and imagined, pales in comparison to all that lies ahead. Forgive us for losing sight of the hope we have in You. Teach us to trust the journey we are on, ever holding fast to all that lies ahead. Show us how to love those around us in ways that give glimpses of the hope that is found in forever with You. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we set our entire being on loving You and those You have placed around us with hope securely set in our hearts. Amen.

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

Guide me in Your truth and teach me, for You are God my Savior, and my hope is in You all day long. – Psalm 25:5

Persist in Prayer

Then Jesus said to her, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed at that moment. – (Matthew 15:28, NIV)

Then Jesus answered, “Woman, you have great faith! You will get what you asked for.” And right then the woman’s daughter was healed. – (Matthew 15:28, ERV)

Jesus gave in. “Oh woman, your faith is something else. What you want is what you get!” Right then her daughter became well. – (Matthew 15:28, MSG)

This exchange between Jesus and a Canaanite woman is a great example of persistent faith. The woman’s daughter was suffering, and she knew that Jesus could heal her. Despite being a Canaanite (not God’s chosen people), the woman sought Jesus to heal her daughter. Jesus went back and forth with the woman about who is deserving, and she kept responding in a way that demonstrated her faith in His ability to heal. He recognized and admonished her for her trust in Him, and healed her daughter immediately. So often, I think we disqualify ourselves from His help, as we think that we are somehow unworthy of His touch if our request is not answered right away. What this shows us is that we need to keep asking, keep pursuing the help and healing we are hoping for, as often there is a wait that grows our faith. Perhaps the wait occurs to provide time for healing of our hearts, rather than just a quick fix. I cannot claim to truly understand why some healings are immediate, some are gradual, and some do not happen on this side of heaven. What I do know is that God is good. May we ever continue to seek Him to meet our needs, and praise Him for His goodness and love.

The heart of a mom,

That holds fast to hope;

Demonstrates great faith,

Grace granted to cope.

We must keep asking,

Choose trust and believe;

God’s loving kindness,

Is what we receive.

O Lord, please lead us,

Help us choose to pray;

Ever keep seeking,

For You are the way.

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You hear our prayers and heal us in Your timing. Thank You that You listen to our persistent prayers. Forgive us for our frustration when answers don’t come as soon as we think they ought. Teach us to trust You and Your timing, and to contend for the help and healing that is needed. Show us how to love, encourage and lift up those around us with ongoing persistence. May many find healing and hope as they come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God as we continually trust and lean into You. Amen.

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

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. – Matthew 7:7

Not Done Yet

Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. – (Philippians 1:6, NIV) 

I am sure that the good work God began in you will continue until He completes it on the day when Jesus Christ comes again. – (Philippians 1:6, ERV) 

I pray with great faith for you, because I’m fully convinced that the He who began this glorious work in you will faithfully continue the process of maturing you and will put His finishing touches to it until the unveiling of our Lord Jesus Christ! – (Philippians 1:6, TPT) 

Today, as I begin my 49th trip around the sun, I am extraordinarily grateful that God is not finished with me yet. He is faithful to continue to refine and grow us until the day that we meet Him face-to-face. Being well aware of my flaws and shortcomings, I am reassured that He is not finished with me yet. Though I can see the good that He has done in me, I know that God has not completed all that needs to be done. This is true for all of us who seek and trust in Him. God will refine us so that we may live out our days how He designed us to live. There is much comfort in His promises, for He is faithful to do what He says He will do. The Lord’s care for us is physical, emotional, spiritual and tangible. He refines us body, heart, soul and mind. Additionally, this brings great comfort, as my mom is still in process of healing from a stroke, a bit more than a year ago. He has brought her far, but I know He is not finished with her yet. She is light and life, joy and peace to all whom she meets, and I trust that He will continue to strengthen and empower her to do all that He has created her to do. May we ever be confident in the promises of God, for we are a work-in-progress that He is refining to more clearly reflect His light to the world. 

For I am convinced, 

That God is not done; 

Working, refining, 

All that He’s begun. 

As His created, 

God’s own work of art; 

He’s always faithful, 

To complete each start. 

His love is perfect, 

Always it endures; 

Challenges, changes, 

All who choose come near. 

Let our hearts respond, 

With love and with praise; 

Trusting He’s faithful, 

For all of our days. 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You are not finished with us yet. Thank You that You love us as we are, yet love us so much that You do not leave us that way. Thank You that we are a work in progress until we meet You face-to-face. Forgive us for getting in the way of all that You want to do in and through us. Teach us to trust You more, so that we would embrace every bit of grace showered upon us to make us more like You. Show us how to love those around us in the way that You have designed us to love. May many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we praise You for the work You have done, are doing, and will continue, all the days of our lives. Amen. 

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

For the word of the Lord is right and true; He is faithful in all He does – Psalm 33:4

Watch in Hope

But as for me, I watch in hope for the Lord, I wait for God my Savior; my God will hear me. – (Micah 7:7)

 

Micah was a man of great faith, in the midst of terrible turmoil. Despite the destruction and decay that surrounded him, he held fast to his hope in God, and trusted that the Lord would be true to His word. His hope was in the prophetic promise of Christ who was yet to come. We have the blessed benefit of knowing that Christ has come as the perfect sacrifice, once and for all, and is our hope and Savior, if only we will trust in Him. Today, no matter what surrounds us, we can watch in hope for the Lord, ever waiting on Him – for our Savior and our God, hear our every prayer.

 

Despite what is seen,Bold in Battle

with hope, look to God;

for He is faithful,

when His path we trod.

Wait for the Savior,

for our prayers He hears;

all that leaves our lips,

straight unto His ears.

Our God is faithful,

He loves us to life;

He saves and redeems,

brings an end to strife.

So be not afraid,

to hope in the Lord;

He hears and He sees,

we’re never ignored.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that we can watch in hope for You, and wait for You; for You hear our every prayer and heart’s cry. Thank You that You are faithful and loving and kind, and that You want good things for Your children. Forgive us for our lack of faith in the fire, and help us to cling to You and Your promises when the seas are stormy. Lead us to love others with perseverance, just as You love us with a love that never ends. May many come into a lasting relationship with You, Lord. Be glorified O God, as we watch and wait in hope, and trust that You hear our every prayer. Amen.

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

The joy of the Lord is your strength. – Nehemiah 8:10

To Persist in Prayer

Sometimes, it feels as if we are crying out in vain. Our prayers may feel unheard, as they seemingly go unanswered. Like the Gentile woman who was seeking healing for her daughter before Jesus, we too must humble ourselves at His feet, and persistently pray, trusting that He is able to do abundantly more than we could hope or request.

 

As the woman responded to Jesus when He implied that He was not there fore the Gentiles, her answer in faith, moved Him to action. Then Jesus answered, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour. – (Matthew 15:28)

 

May humility and perseverance fuel our faithful prayers, as Christ sees and hears all that we ask in His Name.

 

When prayers feel unheard,To Persist in Prayer

we’re called to press on;

trust He is faithful,

may our hope be strong.

For He hears our cries,

each request we make;

the Lord is for us,

He moves for our sake.

He sees and He knows,

the faith that we hold;

and heals where we hurt,

to help make us bold.

Let us each go forth,

and share what He’s done;

our faithful Father,

His Spirit and Son.

 

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that though we do not always see You moving on our behalf, You hear our prayers and are doing far more than we could even begin to imagine. Thank You that You consider us faithful, when we are persistent in prayer. Forgive us for lacking the fortitude to stay in the fight when all around us seems to fail. Teach us to trust You more, so that we will persistently pray in faith, trusting that You hear and are doing abundantly more than we can see or understand. Lead us to love others with Your relentless love, and help many come into a lasting relationship with You. Be glorified O God, as we faithfully persist in prayer, even when we cannot see any answers on the horizon. Amen.

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

Listen… be wise, and keep your heart on the right path. – Proverbs 23:19

Love that is True

Love that is TrueHow shall we know,

what is true love?

We look to Christ,

His life, thereof.

He gave it all,

so we could live;

to honor Him,

do as He did.

Our very lives,

for others lay;

see people’s needs,

give self away.

Love not with words,

but love in deed;

may our actions,

to Father, heed.

To truth belong,

set hearts at rest;

as His heart’s known,

we shall be blessed.

When heart condemns,

yet our faith, true;

know God’s greater,

His love is too.

Be confident,

in prayer, rise;

those who obey,

He hears our cries.

(Responding to 1 John 3:16-22)

Give It Away by Michael W. Smith (song that began to go through my mind as I read this passage in 1 John 3.)

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You for sending Your Son to show us the way we should live. Thank You Jesus, for taking our sin upon Yourself and for sending Your Spirit to be our Counselor. Forgive us for the times that we feebly attempt to love in our own strength and spew out empty words that are not backed up by actions that reflect Your love. Teach us to love as You love. May we willingly give ourselves away so that many may come to know what true love really is. Remove from us, all that is untrue, and grant us great faith – unwavering confidence in You. Let the lost be led to Your love, and may they come into a real relationship with You, the Lover of our souls. Amen.

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

Where Freedom is Found

image by Soda Head

image by Soda Head

Our nation was formed,
by men of great faith;
longing for freedom,
from king’s former wraith.
Escape from bondage,
evil tyranny;
the fight to part ties,
at last to be free.
The brave and the bold,
fought so valiantly;
the benefit known,
as we are now free.
Ultimate freedom,
does come at great price;
for us to be found,
took Christ’s sacrifice.
Jesus, God’s glory,
stepped down from His throne;
made way for our God,
to truly be known.
As rockets red light,
and bombs burst in air;
give glory to God,
for our freedom share.

(Responding to Hebrews 1:3-4)

Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that true freedom is found in You alone. Thank You for the privilege I’ve had to grow up in a nation where I am free to worship You corporately, without fear of persecution. Please provide places for people in nations that do not know this freedom, to gather and encourage one another, knowing that our ultimate freedom is found only in You. Forgive us for taking our freedom for granted, and help us to walk boldly in the freedom found in You, so that many may be set free from all that is binding. May they find true freedom that is found in You alone. All glory and honor to You, Who has made our hearts truly free in Thee. Amen.

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