Today’s Reading: 2 Chronicles 6:12–42; 1 John 5; Habakkuk 1; Luke 20
I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life. And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. 1 John 5: 13-14
This past weekend so many people were blessed by an amazing day that included spending time together and sharing life stories as they shopped together for Christmas. It wasn’t only the shopping, wrapping, and food baskets provided. It was the opportunity to be in the house of the Lord with so many believers and hear God’s words shared. God moved many hearts this day and in addition, we were blessed by four baptisms. This event called Imagine, hosted by Eastview, truly fills the hearts of all involved. Which are many!
For myself, the opportunity to listen, encourage, share, love on, and talk about God’s promises is priceless. Our stories of pain can often be surrounded by loss, rejection, anger, abuse, lying, insecurity, selfishness, and a feeling of being alone. These were just some shared and some of my own. As I heard these stories I listened and truly felt empathy, not just sympathy, because I could relate based on those same feelings at many points in my personal life. After some tears, hugs, laughs, moments of silence, and gestures of affirmation between us we were able to talk about God’s eternal promises for us. That in the midst of all that goes on during our earthly lives God has a plan and He loves us. That in our pain and moments of feeling alone, He is always with us. One friend of mine I shared the morning with recalled a time where her mother was in the hospital. While sitting next to her ailing mothers bed she cried out to God because she had the fear of losing her mother. In this moment Darla said she heard a voice saying, “I’m here”. After hearing this, she had felt a sense of relief as her mom passed away that evening. We agreed that when and if we listen hard enough and believe, God is saying, “I’m Here” to all of us whenever we call.
A few scriptures that we shared this day and I carry around with me as reminders of this promise are listed below. These verses help me in time of need when I’m struggling with how to handle my past, current challenges, and future worries. Sharing God’s word is hard sometimes, I’m not sure why? Maybe, I let my own insecurities get in the way? But, when you share His words and promises they are affirming and possibly life changing for those you share it with. They change your own life as well. Here are a few of the verses we shared;
Past – I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:13-14
Obstacles – Count it all Joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfected and complete, lacking nothing. James 1:2-4
Hope – the LORD delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love. Psalm 147:11
Future– For I know the plans I have for you declares the Lord, plans to prosper and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11
During this time of the year this is so much Joy in giving, time together, and the remembrance of the birth of Jesus. There can also be so much pain in loss, family struggles, and feeling like you don’t measure up. In our moments of pain and struggle we can’t allow these earthy worries take us over. We need to call out to God and ask for his strength and love. When you feel like you can’t call anyone else you can always call to God.
I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life. John 8:12