Bask in Being His

This blog could be for my college friends. It could be for someone in a season of transition, someone who doesn’t like their job, someone lacking joy and purpose, or simply someone who has a gut feeling that there is something they are missing in this life.

I spend a lot of time wondering about what I was meant to do in this life—what my future should look like. I frequently find myself asking questions like, “What should I do now? What should I do next? What does God want me to do? Who does God want me to be?” I really, really want God to just tell me. Wouldn’t that be so easy? (But then we wouldn’t have to trust and depend fully on Him!). I can’t help but laugh a little as I write this, because I know a lot of us have asked this same question. 😉

Recently, God has clearly revealed His heart to me. I love that He is always revealing His heart to me. This time I chose to quiet my mind and heart and listen to Him. Isn’t He so patient and kind that He would stay and wait for a fickle human like me? 🙂

What God reminded me is that He has already told me what He wants me to do and be—right now, next year, and forever. The answer is simple: He wants me to be in a relationship with Himself, and He wants me to be an imitator of Him (John 3:16, Ephesians 5:1-2).

I love writing letters, and I have been putting Ephesians 1:5 in many of the letters I have written recently. In the NLT, it goes like this:

“God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure.”

Through His Word that never returns void, God has shown me that His greatest pleasure, joy, and delight is to be in an intimate, loving relationship with me. It is not even about what I “do,” funny enough. Here’s why:

He loves me because He loves me.

He loves me because He loves me.

He loves me because He loves me.

I didn’t decide on Him; He decided on me. Our relationship is dependent on HIS consistent love for me, not MY actions or “doings.” The same goes for you (read 1 John 4:9-10).

Special person, I want you to know that while you were still a sinner, God sent His Son, Jesus, to save you and make a way for you to be with God again. This is not because He HAD to but because He WANTED to (read Ephesians 2!).

So, what does God want you to do?

Well, He doesn’t need you to DO anything. He wants you to let Him love you. He wants you to know Him by spending time with Him. He wants to be your best friend (read Matthew 7:22-23).

AND…He wants you to be like Him. He wants you to love those He has placed in your path. He wants you to be a good steward of your family and friends (read John 13:34-35).

Therefore, there is no more pressure to know what you’re supposed to do now, next, or for the rest of your life. In Christ, we get to look at life differently. In Christ, we are already “living the dream!”

“The doors will open and close; you will end up wherever you’re meant to be,” the culture says. But as children of God and believers in the gospel of Jesus Christ, we already know where we are meant to be, and that is abiding in God’s presence in close friendship with Him (see John 15). We may not know His plans for us quite yet, but His purpose for us will forever remain unchanged. His purpose for us since the beginning of time is to be HIS (read Ephesians 1:5 again!).

So, no matter what season of life we are all in, we get to simply exist in intimacy with God and fulfill the greatest commandments: to love God with all we are and to love our neighbors as ourselves (Matthew 22:36-40). We must trust that God will take us where He wants us when we seek Him first (read Matthew 6:33!). The truth is, in Him, we are exactly where we are supposed to be. 🙂

Friend, I want to pump you up for a second! I know without a doubt that God made you specific and for a special purpose—because He says so in Ephesians 2:10. I know that He delights in the details of your life and is fully focused on you and will provide for you—because He says so in Psalm 139 and Psalm 34:15 and Philippians 4:19. I know that He has immeasurably more for you—because He says so in Ephesians 3:20.

So…exist where you are right now, love the people around you, and bask in being God’s kid. Tell Him what’s on your heart and choose to trust Him with your life. He is big enough to use you right where you are and lead you to the next place He wants you to go. It’s never EVER too late.

Last thing and very important thing: I want you to know that you already make God proud…not because of what you “do”….but because it is His greatest pleasure and most genuine joy to be in relationship with the very special YOU.


If you don’t have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, be of great joy, because He is waiting for you. 1 John 1:9 says,

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

God loves you deeply and accepts you just as you are. You can invite Him into your heart right now and let Him change your life—on this earth and into eternity. He wants to give you abundant life now and eternal life forever (read John 10:10 and John 3:16!).

The Greatest Valentine

My dear friend, Brooke, shared this with me, and it made my day. I wanted to share her little story with you, and I hope it makes your day, too: 

Coming from someone who has gone nineteen years without having a Valentine, I know first hand that February 14th can be challenging for some people. Don’t get me wrong–I love receiving a box of chocolates from my mom every year, but it’s just not the same. 

As I have been thinking about this today, it dawned on me: you and I have a Valentine that we may have forgotten about: God! 

Now, you won’t see Him physically at your door today with flowers and chocolates, but friend, He has given you so much more. The greatest proof of His love for you was Him sending His one and only Son to die for you so that you could be in an intimate relationship with Him forever. 

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Romans 5:8

The love that God has for you is so much bigger, better, and more perfect than any Valentine you will ever have. Sure, it is fun to celebrate Valentine’s day with someone–and being in loving, earthly relationships shows us a beautiful piece of God’s heart–but aside from any earthly Valentine, God can satisfy us completely with His perfect love. 

This verse has come to mind: 

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

1 Corinthians 13:4-8

You may have heard this verse countless times at weddings or have seen it in cards, but I think we often overlook it. This verse is just one of many that shows us the power of perfect love, as God is directly telling us how to love and be loved. 

Someone once told me to replace the word “love” and “it” with the person I love most and see if the characteristics of that person match up with this Scripture. However, I have another challenge for you: replace the word “love” with God. 

Here is how this passage now reads: 

“God is patient, God is kind. God does not envy, God does not boast, God is not proud. God does not dishonor others, God is not self-seeking, God is not easily angered, God keeps no record of wrongs. God does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. God always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. God never fails.”  

[for further study, read these Scriptures to see evidence and proof of God’s character of perfect love throughout Scripture: 2 Peter 3:9, Titus 3:4-7, Philippians 2, John 8:1-11, Psalm 145:8, Romans 8:1, John 1:14, 2 Thessalonians 3:5]

You see, God doesn’t just possess these characteristics; He exceeds them. This, my friend, is because God is love (see 1 John 4:16), and He loves us unconditionally–which means no matter what. God’s constant love will never leave us, and as Romans 8:38-39 says, “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” 

Although it is sometimes difficult to comprehend or believe, God’s love is truly enough for us. When the Lord is your Shepherd, you have all that you need (Psalm 23:1). You will never find a love quite like His. 

So, if you have read this far, let me leave you with this: Today, rather than filling your head with thoughts like, “I wish I had” or “What if I never find someone?,” choose to rest in the peace and joy of God’s sweet and faithful love for you. 

After all, in John 15:13, Jesus says to you, “ Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” 

The God of the universe came to earth in human form for the sole purpose of laying down His life for you. You are highly valued and of great worth according to Jesus. 

May today be a reminder of how Jesus is in relentless pursuit of you because you are His beloved. He created you to be in a love relationship with Himself, and it is His greatest joy to love on you. This is what He came to do: to make sure you know beyond a shadow of a doubt that you are loved just the way you are.

We pray God’s Word blesses you today. May you walk today in confidence, secure in knowing that you are indeed loved by your perfect and forever Valentine, Jesus Christ.

Challenge: Make every day Valentine’s Day because the world will know we are Christians (God’s people) by our love (John 13:34-35). 🙂

Day By Day

The process won’t be perfect, I remind myself, but there is One who is perfect who promises to take every step with me, minute by minute, hour by hour, and day by day.

Recently, I have been learning about what it means to be fully dependent on God. In my flesh, I tend to do things in my own strength day after day–or try to, at least. This usually leaves me feeling tired and weary. In a culture of self-help, it is easy to forget about God and revert to relying on ourselves. However, this is not how we were created to live, and there is a God who longs to take this heavy burden from us. We will get to that soon enough.

As I was talking with a friend recently about how I have been doing, they encouraged me with a story from God’s Word that I often forget. I want to share it with you today.

In Exodus 16, after the Israelites were two months out of Egypt, they found themselves in a desert. Here they grumbled that they would starve, even wishing to be enslaved again in Egypt, and yet God was gracious to them. Read verse 4:

Then the Lord said to Moses, “I will rain down bread from heaven for you. The people are to go out each day and gather enough for that day…”

Exodus 16:4

First of all, God is too kind. He was still willing to think about His people and provide for them even after they complained to the One who had just freed them from bondage. Second of all, bread from heaven? Our God is mighty, and nothing is impossible for Him. Lastly, I think it is interesting that God specified He would only give them “enough for that day.”

After reading this verse, I pondered those choice words. Enough for that day. The Holy Spirit, who guides me into all truth, taught me that God designed us to be fully dependent on Him. He hard-wired us for a love relationship with Himself, and He stops at nothing to be intimate with us. If He gave the Israelites food to store away for a whole year, month, or even a whole week, they would’t have had to depend on Him on the daily. They would have forgotten about God and focused on themselves and what they could do.

Do you see? It is the very same with us. If God told us where we would be in a year and every step we would take to get there, we wouldn’t need Him. Furthermore, we wouldn’t get to experience the joy of an intimate relationship with the Living God. We would miss out on how He is carrying us moment by moment. Truly, He has our best in mind. When we are fully dependent on Him each and every day, we get to experience Him do immeasurably more than all we could ask or imagine. Praise God.

Just like God provided His people manna day by day, so we can trust Him to provide for us day by day, for He has not changed, and He still works the same way (see Malachi 3:6).

Dear friend, I pray this story has encouraged you and met you where you are in this specific season of your life. I want to leave you in awe of who your God is, and I pray you will be blessed by this truth:

  • God says that His burden is light, and He wants to give it to you (Matthew 11:28-30).
  • God cares deeply for you (1 Peter 5:7).
  • God daily bears your burdens (Psalm 68:19).
  • God will take care of you, not permitting you to slip and fall (Psalm 55:22).
  • God is with you always, and He will never leave you nor forsake you (Matthew 28:20, John 14:16).
  • God delights in every detail of your life, for He is big enough to hold it all (Psalm 37:23).
  • God will meet all of your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:19).

At last, may you know that Jesus is even better than the manna that the Israelites received. Jesus lasts forever, and He wants to satisfy you today. Read John 6:

Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is the bread that comes down from heaven and gives life to the world…I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty…Your ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness, yet they died. But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which anyone may eat and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”

John 6:32-33, 35, 49-51

Friend, God is your Daily Bread, and you do not have to worry when you seek Him first. You have the freedom to take it one day at a time with Him because each day is a gift, and you are not promised tomorrow (Matthew 6:33-34). This is why you can go out in joy and be led forth in peace. You will never have to do this life alone, not one more second. You have a God who is with you, for you, and One who promises to meet all of your needs, minute by minute, hour by hour, and day by day.

From Knowledge to Obedience

Happy New Year, friend! 

What I love about a new year is the feeling of having a fresh, clean slate. What I love even more is the reminder that, in Christ, each day is a fresh, clean slate. 2 Corinthians 5:17 says that anyone who is in Christ is a new creation; the old is gone, and the new has come! This is good news!

Furthermore, there is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, for through Him, the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death (Romans 8:1-2)! Those who look to the Lord are radiant, and their faces are never covered with shame (Psalm 34:5). 

Jesus came to earth and died for us so that we could live a brand new life, all for, with, and about Him! 2 Corinthians 5:15 says, “He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.”

When we place our faith in Jesus, this becomes our new battle cry: “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). Amen!

John 8:32 says that THIS truth has the power to set us free, but as I ponder it and recite it, I can’t help but wonder, How?

Something I have realized is that we live in a knowledge culture, and sometimes, this culture can hinder our intimacy with Jesus…and our growth overall.

Knowledge is not bad. In fact, God wants us to grow in knowledge and depth of insight so that we can understand what truly matters (Philippians 1:9). However, knowledge becomes dangerous when it gets in the way of our child like faith and utter dependence on God. Quite honestly, I feel like I have been in this place recently. If you pause to examine yourself, you may feel this way, too.

John 5:39-40 has convicted me recently, and God has used it to refine me. Jesus says:

You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me, yet you refuse to come to me to have life.

John 5:39-40

So many times I let pride slip in, and I boast in the fact that I have so much knowledge of God’s Word—I have more than a lot of people, I think to myself. In doing this, I forget Jesus, the One who died so that I could experience abundant life. When I rely so much on my own knowledge, I tell myself I don’t need Jesus anymore.

I have found that I can know a lot, but that doesn’t mean I am going to experience chain-breaking freedom or abundant life. That’s only found in Jesus.

James 2:19 says this: “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.” You see, true freedom doesn’t come with more head knowledge, but rather, it comes with more obedience. A lot of people can say that they know God, but what sets born-again Christians apart from the rest of the world (besides the fact that they will spend eternity with God!) is an intimate relationship with Jesus that compels them to live lives of love (John 13:34-35).

You see, true freedom doesn’t come with more head knowledge, but rather, it comes with more obedience.

James 1:22-25

When we start to humble ourselves before the mighty throne of God, admit our need for Him, and begin to act on the truth of His Word, we will be set free. Matthew 5:3 says, “God blesses those who are poor and realize their need for him, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs” (NLT). In Malachi 4:2, God says this: “But for you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings. And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture” (NLT).

So, I am going into this new year so thankful for the knowledge God has graciously allowed me to have. However, my deepest desire and prayer is that this knowledge of who God is/who He made me to be would not just remain knowledge but would translate into action.

James 1:22-25 commands us with this:

Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.

James 1:22-25

TO WRAP IT ALL UP:

At New Year’s, I always reassess my life and its purpose/meaning on this earth. Today, I realize that I have been concerned about things that don’t really matter (how I am going to provide for my needs, what I am going to do after I graduate, etc.). I have come to one conclusion that gives me peace at the end of any day, whether my day was good or bad: I am the Lord’s, and I was created to worship Him. And when I seek Him, He will provide for all of my needs.

No matter where I am, who I am with, or what I am doing, I can worship God by giving Him all of me. Romans 12:1 says that when I offer my body as a living sacrifice to Him, He is greatly pleased. And when I do that, I will finally be able to realize His good, pleasing, and perfect will (the truth about what I was actually made for).

I have realized that I can’t miss out on what God has to offer if I simply seek Him above all else. It’s just not possible. If I am seeking Jesus, I can’t miss out. He is everything I will ever need (Psalm 23:1).

If I am seeking Jesus, I can’t miss out. He is everything I will ever need. 

Psalm 23:1

I can participate in His will right here, right now, because all He wants is to be in an intimate relationship with me and make me look like Him so that I can represent His character to the world. What a privilege it is to be seen, heard, known, and loved by the God of the universe and to take on the assignment to make sure the person next to me feels seen, heard, known, and loved.

So, may our prayer shift from “Where should I go and what should I do?” to “Here am I; Send me, God. I am available, right here, right now. Teach me to love like You in this specific place.”

Friend, I encourage you to make all of this practical and make a mission statement for your life. Get centralized on your true purpose. And don’t be afraid to stay in a passage of God’s Word until you put it to action…all by His power, with His divine help. Know that He has given you everything you need to live a godly life (2 Peter 1:3), and although the journey won’t be perfect whatsoever, God delights to take it with you every step of the way, one step at a time.

Ask yourself: 

  • Who do I want to become? (see Romans 8:29)
  • What character traits do I want to develop? (see Colossians 3:12)
  • What is my life mission? (see Matthew 22:37-40)

Dear friend, Jesus’ blood speaks a better word over you: You have been loved since the beginning of time, you were created with a divine purpose, and you are wanted just the way you are. I pray you know this truth, believe it with every inch of your soul, and walk in it for the rest of your very valuable life, starting today.

At last, I pray that you would experience the glorious and inexpressible joy of being in an intimate relationship with the Living God, your Maker (1 Peter 1:8). This is what you were made for.

One thing I ask from the LORD, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.

Psalm 27:4

Remember, when you seek God first, He will provide everything you need (Matthew 6:33-34). There is no need to worry. Jesus has given you His everything. Will you trust Him with your everything? Ask Him to refine you today.

“The messenger of the covenant, whom you look for so eagerly, is surely coming,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. “…For he will be like a blazing fire that refines metal, or like a strong soap that bleaches clothes. He will sit like a refiner of silver, burning away the dross…”

Malachi 3:2-3, NLT

The Best Gift in the World

I love this Christmas season so much because it’s about going back to things that matter. Here’s to name a few:

  • Spending extra quality time with family
  • Giving to people who have less
  • Thinking about others (buying all my people Christmas gifts!)
  • Rest (a break from work and school)

Recently, as I was getting so excited about celebrating Christmas and was naturally playing all of my favorite Christmas songs and planning out when to cook my favorite meals and cookies, the Lord put 1 John 4:9-10 on my heart. I stopped to think about this verse and I wanted to share it with you today:

“In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.”
-1 John 4:9-10 ESV

To be made “manifest” is to be made “obvious” or to be “clearly shown by actions.” Friend, what I love more than anything about this Christmas season is the vivid display of how far God’s heart extended to meet you and I on Christmas. This season truly reminds me what great lengths God went to pursue a lost sinner like me.

The truth is, we know that God pursued us because He sent His one and only Son into the world, that we might live through Him.

God sent Jesus, His one and only Son, as a humbled, little baby to grow up with one singular mission: to die for you and me (sinful humans who need help) so that we could live forever with Him if we so choose.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” -John 3:16

God sent Jesus to be the propitiation for our sins. This means Jesus came to take our place, for He is the perfect, sinless sacrifice to take on all our sin and appease God’s wrath.

When the time came, Jesus took on all of our sins, bore our shame, and carried our burdens. 1 Peter 2:24 says that “He personally carried our sins in his body on the cross so that we can be dead to sin and live for what is right. By his wounds you are healed.” Isaiah 53:6 says, “All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet the LORD laid on him the sins of us all.”

Jesus was the Lamb that was slain for us. He died for us so that He could make a Way for you and I to be in an intimate relationship with a holy and righteous God. He died for us so that we wouldn’t have to suffer eternal death apart from God. And do you know what drove Him to do it? His unfathomably large love for you.

The proof of His love is His blood…shed for you.

This is the greatest act of love, for He says, “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends” (John 15:13).

Clearly, you mean the world to Him.

Clearly, you are worth it.

Clearly, you are loved.

In John 14:6, Jesus Himself boldly claims to be the Way, the Truth, and the Life, providing a second option other than eternal death. Because of Jesus, now we can…

  • Live with God forever (John 14:6, John 3:16, John 10:10, John 11:25-26)
  • Be adopted as God’s children (Ephesians 1:4-5, Galatians 4:4-7, John 1:12)
  • Have a forever family (1 Corinthians 12:27)
  • Share in the glory of God (Romans 8:17)

Wow. Praise God!

In John 11:25-26, Jesus says this to you and me: “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?”

Friend, there is no other religion that says salvation is a free gift and no other god that came from so high and settled down so low to make a way for us to be in an intimate relationship with Him forever. I pray that you and I would be of great joy this season (and every day after it ends) as we rejoice in this truth together.

God loves us so much, and He cares so deeply for us to pursue each and every one of us by sending His Son, Immanuel, God with us. My theology teacher reminded me of this: The incarnation (God coming in the flesh and taking our place on the cross) is the hope of our salvation!

Now, 2 Corinthians 3:12 says that this hope has made us very bold. This means we have been divinely empowered to share it (2 Peter 1:3)! On top of that, friend, did you know that Jesus empowers us to be like Him? He says to us, “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you” (John 15:12).

To sum it up, “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters” (1 John 3:16).

So, if you’re looking for a good gift to give someone this Christmas, tell them how much God loves them and what great lengths he went to show them (1 John 4:9-10 is the proof!). It will be the best gift they have ever received because eternal life with Jesus is the greatest gift in the world.

“Thank God for this gift too wonderful for words!” -2 Corinthians 9:15, NLT

No matter what we are going through in this world and in this life, we can find true peace and everlasting joy in going back to all that matters, and that is the gospel of Jesus Christ, God’s one and only Son, who loved us and gave Himself up for us.

Friend, before you leave here, may you know this: You matter. Every single detail of your life matters to God. You are worth being loved because He sacrificed His very own Son for you, and He loves you just the way you are.

Be encouraged! The One who died for you also raised again by the mighty power of God and lives to intercede for you at the right hand of the throne of God (Romans 8:34). He made a way for you to come boldly to the throne of God at any time of day (Hebrews 4:16). Indeed, you are loved. ❤️

I pray you have the merriest Christmas celebrating the best gift in the world! 🎁

“But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship. Because you are his sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, “Abba, Father.” So you are no longer a slave, but God’s child; and since you are his child, God has made you also an heir.” -Galatians 4:4-7

5 Things That Set Christianity Apart

I have been a Christian since I was very young. But it is not the title of my religion that makes me excited about it. It is the One I love and serve and know deeply that makes me excited to wake up each day. He gives me life and meaning and purpose, and His name is Jesus.

Recently, God has been bringing to my mind the big things that set Christianity apart from all other religions in the entire world, and I want to share them with you. I am not a scholar or a theologian, and although I like to think deeply about things, my brain only goes so deep. However, the Bible says something so cool in Psalm 119:130: “The unfolding of [God’s] words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple.” This means that reading God’s Word can make you and I wise. Wow! In Psalm 119:98, we are told that God’s Word makes us wiser than our enemies, for it is always with us.

I have seen this truth play out in my own life, because even though I am young, the Lord’s wisdom grows in me when I sit with Him in His Word. His Spirit illuminates my mind to understand His truth, and that is the only reason I am sharing it with you now! 1 Corinthians 2:12 says, “What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us.” I encourage you to read 1 Corinthians 2:12-16 after you finish here. It explains the difference between the person without the Spirit of God and the person with the Spirit of God. I love verse 16, which says that those who have God’s Spirit indeed have the mind of Christ. 🙂

Friend, it is so special to share with each other what God is revealing to us. However, there is something so unique and intimate about sitting with Jesus yourself. If you have never taken the time to sit with Him and open up His Word for yourself, I encourage you to do that (after you read this blog and are reminded how AWESOME our God is!). 1 Corinthians 2:12 says that He has freely given His Word to you. What a sweet gift! In Jeremiah 33:3, God says to you, “Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.” He is waiting for you, dear human, and He is ready to reveal to you the fullness of Himself. I pray Ephesians 3:19 over you right now, that you may “know [His] love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”

Okay! Let’s get to the 5 things that set Christianity apart from ALL other religions (get ready to be blessed!):

Christianity is not just a religion (a list of things you can and can’t do), but it is all about an intimate relationship with the Living God. God made us because He wanted to know us fully, and He wants us to know Him fully (that’s why He has given us His Word, which is a revelation of Himself!). God is sovereign above all, yet intimately active in every part of our lives. He delights in the details, for He truly cares about us (Psalm 37:23, NLT). We can take peace in this truth.

Our God became human. Jesus is God incarnate (embodied in flesh/human form). Hebrews 1:3 says that Jesus is “the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His nature.” Romans 3:23 says that we are all sinners fallen short of God’s glory. Although we were made to be in a relationship with God, predestined to be His kids (Ephesians 1:4-5), we can’t get to God on our own with the shameful status of filthy sinners. This is why God, in His great love, sent Jesus to take on our sins and die for us. He died the death we deserved and made a way for us to come back to God by believing in Him (John 3:16). By His blood, we can be declared righteous (Romans 5:9). Our God is special because He came from so high to meet us so low (Isaiah 66:1 says that heaven is His throne and earth is His footstool) to make a way for us to come boldly to His throne of grace at any time of day (see Hebrews 4:16). Wow. On top of it all, because God came in the flesh, now we have a God who empathizes with us and knows how we feel (see Hebrews 4:15 and Isaiah 53:3). When people are confused with how God can be good and still allow suffering, we can rejoice in the truth that, although our world is imperfect, God made a way for us to one day live with Him forever and suffer no more (John 11:25-26, Revelation 21:4). We can rejoice while we suffer because we have a God who suffers with and for us. We have a great High Priest who is also a best friend because of Jesus’ blood. We can be bought, justified, and become sanctified in Jesus. My humble and loving King, who is fully gracious and fully just, who holds the whole world in His hands, came to rescue me so I could be with Him forever. Praise God.

We get to live forever and be God’s kids…AND BE 100% SURE OF IT! God made us because He so badly wanted to have a relationship with us (Ephesians 1:4-5). By Jesus’ precious and perfect blood, He made a way for us to live with Him forever, without a doubt. This is the gospel! We can be assured of our salvation because the Bible says so (see John 5:24 and 2 Corinthians 1:20-22). Jesus says this: “Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life” (John 5:24). On top of having eternal life, our God calls Himself our Abba, Father, Daddy (Galatians 4:4-7). When we believe in Him, we get to be His kids (1 John 1:12), adopted into His loving family (the Body of Christ)! “Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God…” (1 John 1:12). You get to be the King’s kid! That means you are ROYALTY! All He has is yours—His home and His heart (see John 14:2-3, John 12:49-50, 2 Peter 1:3-4).

Eternal life is a free gift from God. Ephesians 2:8-9 says this: “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.” This means that we don’t have to work the hardest to merely hope for a spot in heaven/hope for salvation. We are either saved or we are not. And it is ALL dependent on what Jesus already did for ALL of us. Praise God! Thank you, Jesus! (P.S. God’s love compels us to do good works, but it is not those works that save us!)

The Gospel of Jesus Christ is experiential. This means we can experience drastic change in our lives as a result of believing in Jesus! John 3:5-6 describes how believers are born again! 2 Corinthians 5:17 says that we are new creations in Christ Jesus; the old is gone and the new is come! Colossians 3 speaks to what we wear when we are in Christ and how we get a whole new wardrobe of godly character when we live in Jesus (specifically verse 12). John 14:16 and 26 say that we now have a constant companion and best friend in Jesus because He gives us His Spirit. This Spirit speaks to us personally (see Hebrews 12:25 and Revelation 2:7). Of course, there will be plenty of days when we feel like God isn’t there with us (even though He says He will be with us forever all throughout His Word, specifically in John 14:16). On the other hand, there will be plenty of days when we feel the presence and power of the Spirit. This is why the Bible says that “God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” This means that we must stand on God’s truth no matter how we feel and rely on His Spirit in all circumstances. (P.S. May you know that feelings are real, but they do not diminish what is true. My dad always gave me this example: if I say, “what’s true for me doesn’t have to be what’s true for you,” then I can decide to jump off a cliff believing I will not die. We all know that if we jump off a cliff, we will not survive. This means there is only one truth for that scenario. In the same way, there is an absolute truth in this world, and it is that Jesus is the ONLY way to heaven/eternal life with God. It is our choice whether we choose to believe that. No matter what we choose to believe, the TRUTH still stands: Jesus is “the Way” to God (John 14:6), He will always be with us no matter our feeling Him or not (Psalm 139:7-10), and He loves us with a perfect love (1 John 4:9-10).)

Beloved human! I pray a SAFE prayer over you, that you would experience a spiritual awakening or a fresh encounter with the Living God as a result of this life-changing truth. We simply can not leave the same after hearing these 5 things! I pray your intimacy with God will increase day by day as you get to know Him through His Word and spend intentional time with Him in prayer.

I encourage you to share this Good News with others! These are 5 simple truths that change everything for all of us, and it is summed up in the fact that God loved us all so much that He sent His one and only Son. If we believe in Him, we will not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16). Praise the Lord!

One final note: The Bible says that the world will recognize Christians by the way that they love others (John 13:35). This makes sense, because to call yourself a “Christian” means to call yourself a “little Christ.” Christians are called to imitate Jesus in the words that they say and the actions that they take…and most importantly, in the way that they love (Ephesians 5:1-2). Some people say they are Christians but do not love others. I am so sorry if you have been hurt by someone who claimed to be a Christian. 1 John 4:8 says that whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. I pray for the person that hurt you, that they would come to know the love of God truly. And I pray for you, that you would not let someone else’s decision rob you of a genuine relationship with the Living God. Even born-again Christians will love imperfectly because we are all sinful humans who live in a fallen world. But there is a God whose love is perfect and will never let you down. I pray you will come face to face with Him, the One who understands your hurts fully and longs to restore your soul to the joy of your salvation. You are so loved! ❤️

Lean on Me

Galatians 6:2 clearly commands us to carry one another’s burdens, and in this way, fulfill the entire law of Christ. 

I have always loved this verse, but wow, that’s saying a lot. 

When I read this verse, I envision friends with their arms over each other, picking up one of their friends who is weary….and it makes me smile. I can’t help but think that there is so much more potential to love deeply and sacrificially that I don’t even know I possess in Christ. 

As believers in Jesus, we have the Holy Spirit dwelling in us. Romans 8:11 says that the same power that raised Christ is in us. In Ephesians 1:18-20, I can see Paul crying out in prayer for the Saints: “I pray that your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can understand the confident hope he has given to those he called—his holy people who are his rich and glorious inheritance. I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms” (NLT). 

This, my friend, means that we have God-given power to live out what He commands of us, and that’s to imitate Him (Eph 5:1). 

1 John 2:6 says, “Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did.” Jesus commands us to do as He did in many instances, but this one stands out to me the most: Jesus said, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:12-13, ESV). 

Philippians 2:5 says that in our relationships with one another, we should have the same mindset as Christ Jesus. Paul then goes to describe Jesus’ mindset, characterized by deep humility, saying, “though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Philippians 2:6-8, ESV).

Wow. This is the man we are called to imitate, and we have the divine power to do it. 

Ephesians 4:2 commands us to be completely humble and gentle, bearing with one another in love. To keep up an attitude like this, we must depend fully and desperately on the Holy Spirit. By His divine power, God wants to make us more like His Son…He predestined us for this very purpose (Romans 8:29).

When I read passages like Philippians 2, the Lord reveals to me the awesome truth that we are called to love like Jesus in the most deepest aspect…His sacrificial love.

My dad asked me this once: “We can say we’d die for people all day long but what are we doing to love them today?”

This convicted me, because we are called to live a life of humility like Jesus did, putting others before ourselves (Phil 2:3), thus fulfilling our call as God’s kids. 

In John 13:14, Jesus leads by example and calls us to a profound lifestyle: the washing of others’ feet. He says, “If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet” (ESV). This must mean that we are called to humble ourselves, kneel down, and serve our fellow brothers and sisters—and even the people who don’t even like us/we don’t like—even if it means getting messy at times.

Galatians 2:20 says that, when we believe in Christ, it is no longer we who live but Christ who lives in us. 1 John 4:16 says that God is love, so this means that love lives in us now. Ephesians 3:16-19 tells us that Jesus’ love is so much deeper and stronger than anything in this world…Romans 5:8 tells us that it took Him to the cross for us all. There is more, friend…more love to allow yourself to receive…and more love to let yourself give without fear…because God’s love will never run out. “Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:39).

Friend, I have found that my pride makes it hard to fulfill the law of Christ as stated in Galatians 6:2. I simply don’t want to admit that I need help…that I am sinking…that I am carrying too heavy of a burden…that I feel alone.

Something that the Lord told me recently when I admitted how tired I was of putting up walls was this: I want to teach you how to have a humility that leads to vulnerability…beloved child, you must be authentic with Me first before you can be authentic with others.

The beauty of authenticity with God is the truth that you are inviting in Someone who already knows all of your secret thoughts and actions. The very first verse of Psalm 139 says the God has searched us and knows us. It goes on to say that we are never out of His glance or reach, for He is always pursuing us and is ever close by (verses 2-10).

After we allow ourselves to be known by God—or at least allow ourselves to be okay with the fact that God already knows us—we can start to let trusted people into our heads. If the battle stays fought between our two temples (in our heads), we will lose every time. However, if we start to capture our thoughts and declare truth over them out loud, we will start to see little victories. Friends can help us in this daily battle, for that is the definition of Christ’s Body…we were made to do life with each other…and that doesn’t mean just rejoicing with one another—it means weeping, too, and sitting in the muddy pit, and hurting right there alongside (Romans 12:15).

Friend, I love God. I love that He is so counter-cultural. Do you know what He says? He says that the meek will inherit the earth (Mtt 5:5). He says that the poor in spirit (those who recognize their need for a Savior) are blessed, and theirs is the kingdom of heaven (Mtt 5:3). He says that the humble will be exalted and get to share in the glory of the one, true God (Mtt 23:12, 2 Thess 2:14). 

Let this sink in, and ask God to help you humble yourself before His mighty throne so that you can watch Him lift you up in due time…for those who look to the Lord are radiant, and their faces are never covered with shame. God is the lifter of your head, and He will hold your head high (1 Peter 5:6, Psalm 34:5, Psalm 3:3).

Then, ask God to bring people into your life—or open your eyes to see the people He has already gifted you—who you know you can trust to take up the sword of the Spirit with you (which is God’s Word, as said in Eph 6:17) and actively engage in war on your behalf.

Thank you, God. The Body of Christ is a wonderful thing. The Bible says, “All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it” (1 Co 12:27, NLT).

1 John 1:7 says, “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” This means that we were not made to live in shame, darkness, or loneliness in our sin. James 5:16 says that we should confess our sins to each other and pray for each other so that we may be healed. “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”

Therefore, we are called to live in authenticity in Christ’s body, for the Body is characterized by love (1 Jn 4:12, Jn 13:34-35), and “love joyfully celebrates honesty” (1 Co 13:6, TPT). We are called not to fix people’s situations but to seek the Lord above all else and witness God’s power at work, together.

Back to Galatians 6:2, where we are called to carry each other’s burdens….“each other’s” meaning it goes both ways. 

When I was confused what this meant, the Lord led me to Luke 5. Verses 18-20 say this:

Some men came carrying a paralyzed man on a mat and tried to take him into the house to lay him before Jesus. When they could not find a way to do this because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on his mat through the tiles into the middle of the crowd, right in front of Jesus. When Jesus saw their faith, he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.

The Lord opened my eyes as I read this, and I had a thought: when we are called to “carry” each other’s burdens, this means we are called to “carry” each other to Jesus. We get the privilege to “bear” each other’s burdens (as the ESV says) because it is an opportunity to acknowledge our incapability to save…to seek God above all else….to rely solely on the mighty power of God….to witness Jesus transform lives…to recognize that Jesus’ burden is light.

Wow. I don’t want to miss out on this because I am afraid to be weighed down or afraid of what carrying people’s burdens means….or even afraid I will do it imperfectly. 

God never calls us to perfection…He calls us to be faithful where we are (and with who we’re with)…to be willing to put someone else’s needs before our own…and to love deeply, for love covers a multitude of sins and fulfills the entire law (Luke 16:10, Philippians 2:3, 1 Peter 4:8, Romans 13:10).

Psalm 68:19 says that God daily bears our burdens, so each time we take on someone else’s burdens, we get to surrender them right up to Him through prayer. We get to intercede for that person and partner with them to see the gospel (God’s great love) change everything. Ephesians 6:18 commands us powerfully: “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” 

In Matthew 11:28-30, Jesus says to you: “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

So, it is not really me who bears, but it is God. He is big enough to carry us all in His righteous right hand (Isa 41:10). 

Wow. I love God. He has never intended to place pressure on me to “fix people” or even carry their burdens “perfectly.” I place that perfection standard on myself. What He does intend for me is to join Him on His mission of love and witness the Spirit’s power work in my weakness. Praise God. We can all be imperfect together as we are held by a perfect Father. His love is so unfathomably high, deep, long, and wide…I can’t even comprehend it (Eph 3:16-19)!

So, friend, may you know that you were never meant to do this life alone. God is with you in Spirit, and He has hard-wired us to commune with each other (Jn 14:16, 1 Co 12:27). Praise the Lord for these gifts…the best gifts in the world.

So, let’s “share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ” (Gal 6:2, NLT).

You give me yours, and I’ll give you mine, and we will do this life together. 

Something I have been powerfully convicted of is this: If I think I am a burden, then I am rejecting the power of the cross. Romans 5:8 tells me that God’s great love for me drove Him to send His Son to die. I am the farthest thing from a burden. Quite the contrary, I am a blessing to Him. And so are you. It pleased Him to crush Jesus because He knew that after the fact, it would mean justification for us…a veil being torn…and a Way for us to come straight into the presence of the Father. God made us because He so badly wanted a relationship with us (Eph 1:4-5). You bless His heart. Wow. 

Therefore, it is a privilege to walk alongside my family in Christ. It is a divine privilege to walk in authenticity with them. Because that means that I am acknowledging the truth I was created to acknowledge: I am a dearly loved human being who is worth being seen, worth being known, and worth being loved. 

God loves you, and imitators of God (the members of the Body of Christ) love you, too, and are learning to love like God more and more every day. Praise God.

Friend, in all of this questioning, I have realized that I was made to look like Jesus, and His power is mine. May you know that the exact same is true for you, dearly loved human: You were made to be like Jesus, and His power is yours. 

Here are some beautiful Scriptures that tell us how God’s family should operate: 

  • 1 John 4:18 — always from love and never from fear 
  • Romans 12:15 — in empathy
  • Ephesians 4:32 — in kindness, understanding, and forgiveness 
  • Psalm 24:26 — in honesty, which is a mark of true friendship 
  • Ephesians 4:15 — in truth, which is real love 
  • James 5:16 — in prayer, showing utter dependence on God 

So, let’s carry each other, hold each other, run with each other, run to each other, sit with each other, check on each other, surprise each other, cry with each other, rejoice with each other, and the list goes on…Whatever it looks like, let’s sacrifice ourselves for each other, give up time for each other, and uplift one another, for I believe there is so much more love we will get to witness as we desperately ask God to help us be imitators of Himself. He is perfect love, and until heaven, we get the privilege to carry His love and be a vessel of it, all together. Amen.

“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.” – Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 

So dearest friend, 

When you give me your burden, 

I will give it to Him. 

You are His first, and to me, simply a gift. 

Since He is here for me, I can be here for you. 

For whenever we gather, He is right there, too. 

So, know that you are family, 

And that you can lean on me. 

With Jesus, we will do each of life’s steps together 

And never have to be alone again. 

The Only Thing That Matters

I think a lot about life and my purpose on this earth. My mom and I were talking about mission statements recently and how we want to create a short sentence to remind us why we were created, because it’s easy to forget sometimes (when you are constantly looking to the left or to the right; when you look at your calendar and have zero free time). 🙂

After this conversation with my mom, I took out a sheet of paper and scribbled down all of my thoughts. Here is something that I wrote during that moment that stood out to me:

I want everyone to feel so loved and have a friend—to know they’ll never have to be alone again.

I stopped at this sentence because it made my heart sad at the realization that some people don’t feel loved. 

I think that we have all felt alone in the world at times. We would not be human if we didn’t have this feeling. I have certainly felt alone, especially in the biggest of life’s transitions—when I go to new places, immersed in new groups of people. 

Fortunately, I grew up in a home where, if I wasn’t loved at school or felt like I had no friends (which did happen sometimes), I could come home and be safe and feel loved. A lot of people don’t have this luxury, and it hurts my heart to think about it.

If I have learned anything in this life, I have learned this: we all want to be seen and known and loved for who we truly are. This is a basic human need, and rightfully so, because God created us that way—to be loved—and to know it beyond a shadow of a doubt. 

If I am not loved, then I am not alive. What I mean is, if I am not loved, then I am only existing but never living. True life is found when I am loved—and when I know it beyond a shadow of a doubt. 

We don’t have to look much further than John 10:10 to realize how true this is. This is where Jesus says, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” 

Jesus has come to give us life. That is why He had to die…so that we could live forever in intimacy with Him. Isaiah 53:10 says that “it pleased the LORD to bruise [Jesus]” (NKJV). Romans 5:8 says that God’s love (out of all things!) compelled Him to send Jesus to die for us. This means that we are loved, whether we believe that or not.

1 John 4:9-10 reveals the reason we can know we are loved, beyond a shadow of a doubt: “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.”

Dear human, I may not even know you, but I do know one thing for sure: You were created to be loved, and you are worth being loved.

Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.”

This means that God loves you just the way you are, and He does not ask you to do anything to earn His love. He simply delights to lavish you in it. 1 John 3:1 assures you of this, saying, “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!”

Therefore, you were made to be loved.

Now that we have established this, we can get to the next most important piece of information…

You were created to love.

After a lot of reflection, it is so hard to sum up my mission and purpose in one short sentence, but if I had to, it would be definitely this:

Today, I will receive God’s love and lavish it on others, for that is what I was created to do.

You were created by God to be loved. By the blood of Jesus, you are worth being loved. And you have the God-given purpose to love others in so many special ways. This is the gospel, and it changes everything.

I love these truths:

  • You are loved without doing anything but you are compelled by God’s love to do everything (Eph 2:8-9 and 2 Co 5:14).
  • You are loved just the way you are but you are loved far too much to stay the same as you are (Ro 5:8 and 2 Co 5:17 and Ro 6:1).

So, back to my mission statement brainstorm…

I know I can’t be everyone’s best friend, and I know I can’t even empathize perfectly with everyone. But I can introduce them to Jesus, who is perfect Love, perfect Friend, perfect Empathizer, and will always be there for them (see 1 Jn 4:16, Jn 15:13-14, Heb 4:15, Jn 14:16).

I want to ask God for the love that drives out all fear to ask people questions like, “Has anyone ever told you how much God loves you?…Have you heard that God loves you so much He sent His only Son, Jesus, to die for you so that you could be in an intimate relationship with Him?…What do you think about a God who would do that for you?”

So, I pray that, together, we can learn to receive God’s gracious gift of everlasting love and then lavish His love on others. For He says to us in John 15:12: “My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.” 

No matter how small or big your gesture is, make sure that the people in your path feel loved and know that they are. In a cool way, you have been entrusted with them. They are on your platform. You better believe you were placed right where you are for such a time as this. 

John 13:35 reminds us that the world will come to know Jesus by the way that we love. I pray that by our smiles and our loving embraces—by our secret acts of service and by our words—we would be able to reflect Jesus’ love to the world…together. 

Remember, every platform is the same width because every person has the same worth. There is no bad place to be because every human being is worthy of love. God wants to use you, sweet Saint, right where you are. 

I am convinced that we don’t need less fear but more love. Romans 5:5 says that the Holy Spirit will fill our hearts with God’s love. Praise Jesus! I want more of God’s love in my heart! May we ask God for the desires of His heart to be the desires of ours (Psalm 37:4). He does not want any soul to perish but all to come to repentance and know a personal, intimate relationship with the living God (2 Peter 3:9). 

Here are some beautiful Scriptures calling us to do the only thing that really matters (and lasts forever): love. Let the living Word of God speak for itself. 🙂

  • 1 Corinthians 13 (when you say “I love you,” it means a lot! Let’s ask God for His pure motive of love)
  • Philippians 2:3 (love puts others’ needs before self)
  • Luke 13:10-13 (love acknowledges others by name, cares about their wellbeing, and embraces them)
  • Romans 12:9-10, 15 (love must be genuine, love delights in honoring others above self, love celebrates others and empathizes with others)
  • 1 Peter 4:8 (love doesn’t record wrongs but loves deep)
  • Romans 13:8-10 and Galatians 5:14 (love fulfills the entire law!)

As the TPT version puts it, may love be the motivation for our lives:

“Love is large and incredibly patient. Love is gentle and consistently kind to all. It refuses to be jealous when blessing comes to someone else. Love does not brag about one’s achievements nor inflate its own importance. Love does not traffic in shame and disrespect, nor selfishly seek its own honor. Love is not easily irritated or quick to take offense. Love joyfully celebrates honesty and finds no delight in what is wrong. Love is a safe place of shelter, for it never stops believing the best for others. Love never takes failure as defeat, for it never gives up. Love never stops loving.” -1 Corinthians 13:4-8, TPT

I love what my mom told me once and told me again and again: People don’t care how much we know until they know how much we care. So, may we be quick to listen and slow to speak, seeking to understand before being understood (Ja 1:19). In humility, may we value others above ourselves and put others before ourselves (Phil 2:3). May we love people to the cross of Christ and not force them there. May we be diligent to speak the truth (Eph 4:15)—entrusting ourselves to God in the process like Jesus did (1 Pet 2:23)—because that is real love (even if they don’t like us for it). May we plant and water the seeds of people’s hearts together and have faith that God will make the seeds grow (1 Co 3:6). His love is unimaginably greater than ours! May our prayer be like this: God, I just want to love people…and love them even more…and become like your Son, Jesus (1 Thess 3:12, Phil 3:10).

These are my prayers for you: that you may come to know how loved you are so that you can receive God’s free gift of love and lavish it abundantly…

“I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God” (Ephesians 3:16-19).

“Friend, may the Lord make your love for one another and for all people grow and overflow…” (1 Thess 3:12, NLT).

One last encouragement: If you feel alone, may you know that you are not alone in that feeling, and it is far from true. Even Jesus was forsaken by God, and He knows how you feel (Mtt 27:46). He was acquainted with deepest grief (Isa 53:5). Beyond that, Jesus died so that He could be with you forever. If you place your faith in Him, He lives in you and will never, ever leave you (Jn 14:16). You never have to be alone

And one more thing: God is teaching me that I can believe BIG because nothing is too hard for Him (Jer 32:27). I don’t have time to doubt because God loved me so much He gave up His Son for me to live forever (Jn 3:16). This can be true for you, too. Romans 8:32 says, “How will He not, along with Jesus, graciously give us ALL things?” He truly cares so deeply for us and delights in every detail of our lives (Ps 37:23).

Be blessed today, special person!

And remember, you are beyond worthy of love because Jesus died in your place so that you could live with Him forever. That life can start now!

In Isaiah 43:4, God says to you, “You are precious and honored in my sight, and I love you.” You are so loved that God gave up His one and only Son for you. While you were still a sinner, Christ died for you (Romans 5:8). You are highly valued and of great worth. You mean the world to God.

Praying for you, that you would walk in the truth of the Good News this week.

Never Run Dry

In this specific season of my life, it has not been the easiest to cling to God and His Word–what He says about Himself…and what He says about me. But do I think that this season is a waste? In the past, maybe. But now, not at all.

Honestly, this has been a season where my intimacy with Christ has grown the most because I have realized how much I need Jesus every single second of every single day. He has taught me the power and importance of prayer, laying at His feet, and leaning on the His Body (other believers). He has shown me that I have been given authority over my mind and what I think, and I have a choice to choose the way of truth.

Of course, some seasons seem drier than others. This makes them seem wasted, unproductive, and pointless. I might as well just give up fighting so hard to believe the truth, I think at times. There is a spiritual battle going on, and sometimes, even though I know I have already claimed the final victory in Jesus, it feels like I am not winning. How do I fight from a place of victory instead of for it? We will get back to that.

Let’s think about this: fall is here, and the leaves are turning colors. It’s simply beautiful, and easily my favorite season. But why do leaves turn, you ask? Because they’re dying.

Hmm.

Is this still beautiful, now that we think about what’s really happening?

Oh yes. Perhaps even more so.

In Ephesians 1:23, we are told that God fills everything in every way, so this means that we can see Him in the ordinary things in our daily lives. I love this, because I see Him so evidently in the seasons. When they change, it makes me notice Him even more.

Fall reminds me of many things. First, it reminds me that something had to die for me (Jesus) so that I could become a beautiful, new creation. Second, it reminds me that the Lord has to cut from me things that are dead in order for me to experience the fullness of life that He purchased for me by His blood (see John 15 for deeper study). Let me cut you means let me love you when God is speaking. Wow. He loves us so much that He speaks the truth to us (Ephesians 4:15).

So, in this season of fall, I am reminded that no season is a waste. No season is unproductive. No season is pointless. Because God is in every season, working to purify us so that we can become mature and complete, lacking nothing (James 1:2-4).

I can stand confident in the truth that the Lord is using this season to bear fruit in my life and help me to become all that He created me to be–to become more like His Son, Jesus (Romans 8:29). Friend, you can stand confident, too, because of God’s truth.

Romans 8:28-29 says, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.”

The Lord never sleeps or slumbers, so He is always at work in our lives, even when we can’t see it (Psalm 121:4). He wants us to bear fruit so that we can glorify Him (John 15:7-8).

I was reading Jeremiah 17 this morning, which is why I am writing to you today. God’s Word never returns void, but rather, saturates us with His living water, which produces in us greater hope and joy. Here is what Jeremiah 17:7-8 says:

But blessed are those who trust in the LORD and have made the LORD their hope and confidence. They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they never stop producing fruit (NLT).

When we trust God and lean not on our own understanding (what we can see/what we feel), we will be able to thrive even in the “long months of drought” (see Proverbs 3:5-6). This reminds me of Psalm 1, which says that those who delight in God and in His Word will prosper and grow strong (Psalm 1:1-3).

In Colossians 1:23, Paul challenges us by saying, “But you must continue to believe this truth and stand firmly in it. Don’t drift away from the assurance you received when you heard the Good News” (NLT). Choosing the way of truth is a daily choice, and it will take conscious effort! It is what we were made for 🙂

God’s character is the truth that we must stand firm in, for the thing about His character is that it does not ever change, so we can stand on it without shifting. This is what God reveals about Himself in His Word (because He wants so badly for us to know Him!):

  • I do not change (Malachi 3:6 & James 1:17).
  • I am the definition of love (1 John 4:16).
  • I am patient and kind (1 Corinthians 13:4 & 2 Peter 3:9).
  • I am full of grace, compassion, and love (Psalm 145:8).
  • I have brought you near by the blood of Christ (Ephesians 2:13).
  • You can never escape from my presence (Psalm 139:7-10).
  • When you believe in me, my Spirit lives within you (1 John 4:13).
  • I am not far away from you (Acts 17:27).
  • I have always been near (Psalm 34:18).

This is truth. This means that any of our thoughts that go against these statements are not true–they are lies.

Ask God to help you identify the thoughts in your head that are lies and go against His perfect Word.

Since God does not change, we can cling to Him in the daytime and the nighttime. He is the Light of the world, and the darkness can not overcome Him (John 8:12, John 1:5).

We must believe the truth about God that we know and have heard and act on it. James 1:22-25 says, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.”

Friend, God wants to set us free now, and this means that we must soak up His Word by spending time with Him and also make the conscious choice to daily walk in the words that He says (not the words that others say or that we tell ourselves!). His truth alone will set us free, for He is the truth (John 8:32; 14:6).

Jesus tells us this: “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, emphasis added).

May we be people who seek God first and move from self-sufficiency to God-dependancy. He alone will make us strong for the task He has set before us (Isaiah 40:31).

Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint (Isaiah 40:28-31).

At last, I want to encourage you with this, the reason for your never-to-be-cancelled hope:

We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves. Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever. So encourage each other with these words (1 Thessalonians 4:15-18, NLT).

Friend, even though we will face trouble in this world, we have a hope that is greater. God’s Word is our weapon, and it tells us what is to come for us as believers in Jesus Christ. We get look forward to an everlasting future with Jesus! When we declare God’s Word and believe it with all of our hearts, this is how we fight from a place of victory instead of for it.

So, in the dry seasons, which are inevitable, let’s encourage each other with God’s words. God’s Word will never return to us empty, void, or dry (Isaiah 55:10-11). It produces life change and world change. In John 4:14, Jesus says that He is the living water, and in Him, we will never thirst again. He satisfies us, and we lack nothing in Him (Psalm 23:1, Psalm 34:10).

Dear friend,

The Lord will always lead you, satisfy you in a parched land, and strengthen your bones. You will be like a watered garden and like a spring whose waters never run dry (Isaiah 58:11, HCSB).

Let’s believe this together.

Be Anxious For Nothing

It was my cross You bore 

So I could live in the freedom You died for

These are the starting lyrics to the song “Worthy” by Elevation Worship. I listened to this song for the first time two days ago in the morning before I left for class when I was getting a bit worried.

When I heard these lyrics, tears started streaming down my face. I gasped, and I couldn’t get over the fact that my focus has been on all the wrong things. I started to surrender everything to God because I was so tired of holding it all by myself. I revelled in the truth that He says to me personally, Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light (Matthew 11:28-30). I started to praise Jesus for being so caring and loving and truly worthy of all of my praise forevermore, and an inexpressible peace filled my soul.

In all honesty, I have been anxious the past few weeks about many things, and I have not known what to do. I have allowed myself to sit in anxious thoughts, and in that, I have missed out on the sweet freedom that the Lord has for me (Galatians 5:1).

I love Psalm 37:23 (NLT). It says that the Lord delights in every detail of our lives. In my moments of anxiety, the Lord has shown up in every moment because He delights to do so! He has encouraged/comforted me with truth, which I want to encourage/comfort you with (2 Corinthians 1:3-4 says that we get the privilege to comfort others with the same comfort that the Lord comforts us with):

God does not make Himself hard to find. He wants to reveal Himself to us, and He makes it easy. He has given us the Bible, which is His living and active Word that never returns void (Hebrews 4:12, Isaiah 55:10-11). I always go to God’s Word to see what God tells me to do in any given situation, for His Word is a lamp to our feet and a light to our path (Psalm 119:105). God directs our steps and guides us with His Word. 

Philippians 4:6 says distinctly, be anxious for NOTHING (BSB). God goes further to tell us how we do this practically. He tells us to do two things:

  1. Pray 
  2. Give thanks

Instead of worrying, we get to lift up every request to God and thank Him for who He is and what He has done. 

Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. (Philippians 4:6, NLT) 

We get to cry out in joy as we cling to His promises that we find in His Word. Here are some promises you can rejoice always in (Philippians 4:4): 

  • He is going before you to provide for all of your needs (Deuteronomy 31:8, Philippians 4:19). 
  • He will always be with you (Deuteronomy 31:8, Hebrews 13:5, Matthew 28:20). 
  • He is love, and He only operates out of His fullness of love for you (1 John 4:16). 
  • His promise is fullness of life and peace (John 10:10, Philippians 4:7). 
  • He is your perfect Father (Psalm 68:5; 103:13). 
  • He is abounding in love to those who call on Him (Psalm 86:5). 
  • He is your ever-present, on-call help in time of need (Psalm 46:1). 

Ephesians 6:18 says to pray at ALL times on ALL occasions about EVERYTHING. This scripture encourages us to never EVER stop praying. 

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. (Ephesians 6:18) 

Psalm 116:2 reassures us that we can pray with confidence, knowing that God hears us. Psalm 34:15 reminds us that God sees us always and listens to us always. 

Because he bends down to listen, I will pray as long as I have breath! (Psalm 116:2, NLT)

The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, and his ears are attentive to their cry. (Psalm 34:15)

So, this week, I captured my thoughts of negativity and worry (about the simplest, little things that God truly cares about because He cares about ME!), and I prayed that God would provide for my needs as I seek Him (Matthew 6:33, Philippians 4:19).

Then, I thanked God. I wrote out: I am thankful for today (Psalm 118:24). I am thankful that I get to take it one day at a time with Jesus (Matthew 6:34). I am thankful that I am not doing life alone (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10). I am thankful that God has given me His Word and authority to fight the enemy (John 8:32, Luke 10:19). I am thankful that God cares about every little detail of my life (Psalm 37:23). 

Friend, may we remember that the enemy works the same every time. He is not hard to predict. We are told that he is the father of lies (John 8:44). His native language is lies. He lies to us. That’s all He does! 

I have found that the devil will try to fill our minds with anxious thoughts to distract us and steal our purpose. This is why we must consciously invite Jesus in through prayer and thanksgiving so that we can undergo a renewal of the mind, which is where life change begins (Romans 12:2).

Whenever we think of something that is contradictory to what we know to be true from God’s Word, we must immediately capture that thought and speak God’s absolute truth over it (2 Corinthians 10:3-5).

In 2 Corinthians 2, Paul reminds us that we do these things “so that Satan will not outsmart us. For we are familiar with his evil schemes” (verse 11). Remember, the devil comes ONLY to steal our purpose, kill our joy, and destroy our lives. BUT GOD came so that we could have life and have it to the full (John 10:10)! This is God’s character. This is God’s heart. Now you know His character. Now you know His heart. And it’s ALL. FOR. YOU. And if God is for you, then who can be against you (Romans 8:31)?! 

We must sing out to God with His truth so that we can re-focus on the Author and Perfecter—the Initiator and Champion—of our faith, our ever present help in time of need (Hebrews 12:2, Psalm 46:1, Hebrews 4:14-16). This is how we fight our battles: prayer & thanks. 🙂 

My dear friend once told me: Why would you make yourself go through a situation more than you have to by worrying about it beforehand? Good point. 🙂 

My amazing twin reminded me at the bus stop Tuesday morning: If God clothes the flowers and grass in the most excellent outfits, and calls them more beautiful than your own outfit, won’t He surely care for you (Matthew 6:28-30)? Wow. God really, truly delights in caring for me. 

The Spirit constantly reminds me (John 14:26) in His loving nature: 

Refuse to worry about tomorrow, but deal with each challenge that comes your way, one day at a time. Tomorrow will take care of itself. (Matthew 6:34, TPT)

Dear friend, here is a reminder for you today: 

You are seen by God, and He is fully focused on you (Psalm 34:15). He directs every single one of your steps and delights in every detail of your life (Psalm 37:23). You can do anything with God (Matthew 19:26). I pray that we will invite Him in through prayer and thanksgiving, because that leads to an abundance of peace and rekindled purpose (Philippians 4:6-7)!

I am thankful for you and your life. You were God’s decision. You add value. Never forget how celebrated, wanted, cherished, and chosen you are!

Embrace this truth. Walk in this truth. Preach this truth wherever you are, to whoever you’re with. Jesus says directly to you, “Go into all the world and preach the Good News to everyone” (Mark 16:15, NLT)! You, my friend, are a chosen ambassador for Jesus Christ (2 Corinthians 5:20)! 

Remember: 

It was YOUR cross Jesus bore 

So YOU could live in the freedom He died for 

Let me be clear, the Anointed One has set us free—not partially, but completely and wonderfully free! We must always cherish this truth and stubbornly refuse to go back into the bondage of our past. (Galatians 5:1, TPT)