Sin is such an ugly word. Many of us live our lives believing that we will always struggle with sin – that the power of sin still has some kind of hold on us. It’s all around us, and we are constantly being tempted by the world.
Did you know that not one time in the New Testament is a believer called a “sinner”? God’s Word defines a sinner as someone who still walks in their old sinful nature. They choose to live apart from God and reject His Son. We were sinners, but that is no longer the case. In God’s eyes, we are now righteous. We are holy. We are perfect. Continue Reading
The moment I found out that I was pregnant, it began – the name game. It took a while for me and my husband to agree on names (for both our girls); but once we gave them their names, that was it. They became their names. We talked about them and to them by name before they were born. Even during labor, my midwife would call my daughters by their names.
Names are important. If they weren’t, parents wouldn’t spend so much time agonizing over the perfect names for their children. They will be called by that name for their entire existence. Continue Reading
Satan. Lucifer. Devil. He has many names, but one identity. We know him as an enemy of God. He tempts the world into sin. He’s deceptive. He’s a liar. And he’s out to destroy God’s plans and His people. 1 Peter 5:8 tells us that he “prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.” But the Bible doesn’t limit the enemy to one spirit or being. There are “evil rulers and authorities.” The Bible actually defines Satan as having an unseen kingdom. Continue Reading
For many, this physical world is all there is. Angels and demons are nothing but a myth. Some would even call them “ghost stories.” But there is certainly a preoccupation with the unseen world that can’t be denied. There are numerous television shows, movies, and books that describe worlds beyond what we can physically see with our eyes. Why are we so fascinated by the unseen and the supernatural? Continue Reading
How important are labels? If we’re honest, we know that they can literally make or break you. How you view your identity shapes every decision and action you make – both consciously and subconsciously.
If someone were to ask you today who you are, what would you say? Continue Reading
Many of us still struggle with our sinful nature. At least I know I still do. I know what I ought to do, but I can’t seem to be consistent. I lash out at my family and raise my voice when the kids misbehave. Fear and anxiety plague my mind even though God’s Word tells me trust Him in all things. Why can’t I seem to get it together? Continue Reading
There is no condemnation in Jesus. Many of us have heard this truth as believers, but what does it mean to walk in it? I can know that I’m forgiven by God, but how do I reconcile that with the fact that I sometimes struggle and I still mess up from time to time?
If you’re anything like me, you’ll beat yourself up for every little stumble. Continue Reading
I was a ballet dancer and instructor for over 15 years. Throughout my time in the dance world, I learned a lot about what it means to be “graceful.” I can tell you from experience that grace is far more than beauty and refinement. To be a graceful dancer means to be driven by both elegance and self-control. Ballet dancers long to be magnificent and polished in their abilities. Their movements are defined by strength; yet to those watching, it appears to be effortless. Continue Reading
I recently read an article that emphasized our need to minimize our self-worth. We are called to die to ourselves and live for Christ. While this may be true, (God hates pride) something struck me as I was reading his words. In our attempt to be humble and “die to ourselves,” we have become a people who prides themselves on low self-esteem and worth. We equate humility with thinking lowly of ourselves. But we are God’s treasure. Low self-worth was never His intention for His people. Continue Reading
Lethargy. Procrastination. Whatever you want to call it – it’s never a good thing. No one ever looks back and wishes they had put things off a bit longer. No one wishes they had chosen to do nothing with their time. In fact, most of our regrets stem from laziness and procrastination. We wish we had taken a stand instead of backing down. We wish we would have made more of an effort or spent more time on the things we truly cared about. And we long to go back in time so we can get our act together sooner.
So my question is this: if we know that laziness is never a good thing, why don’t we do something about it?
Looking back at the past year, I have much to be thankful for. I am truly blessed. But it’s a new year. It’s a chance to start fresh, have a new beginning, and to create new goals for the upcoming year. As much as I love setting goals (and checking them off… that part is my favorite!), God has placed something on my heart for the upcoming year that has nothing to do with tangible goals or resolutions. In fact, this newness He has placed on my heart is something that can’t be measured.
God longs to make all things new in my heart and in my life.
Before Christ, I was a slave to sin and to this world. My life lacked purpose and meaning, and I was on the road to death rather than life. I desperately needed a Savior – Jesus Christ – to rescue me.
It’s such a simple concept, yet I feel that over the years the enemy has distorted this message. Many of us are walking around holding on to the labels of who we used to be (sinners, slaves, etc.) instead of stepping into who God intends for us to be.
Yes, before Christ I was incapable of anything resembling righteousness… but the key word here is “was.” I was incapable. I was living for my own pleasure instead of living for God. And I was doomed to death as the result of my sin. But in Christ, these things are no longer true.
Ever since I was a little girl, life has been all about the future. When I was younger, I was asked what I wanted to be when I grew up. As a high school student, I planned for college. Once in college, I prepared for my future career. Then I got married and had children of my own. At this stage of life, I’m not only thinking about my own future, but I am now preparing my daughters for their future.
God is faithful. He never disappoints. He keeps His promises, even when we don’t keep ours. We can rely on Him in every circumstance. But people… we have the tendency to let each other down.
As a mom, I desire to never disappoint my girls. I never want their hopes to be shattered. I want to be faithful and to keep my word. Unfortunately, I will let them down. I will lose my temper. I will say one thing and do another. And I will disappoint them. It’s a fact of life.
So what happens when we disappoint God? Is He angry with us? Does He want to give up on us?
Merriam-Webster’s dictionary defines hope as “the feeling of wanting something to happen and thinking that it could happen : a feeling that something good will happen or be true.”
When it comes to our children, our health, and our safety, we hope for the best because we know that the best doesn’t always happen. We hope because we know that this life is uncertain and can change at a moment’s notice. We hope…