Empowered by Jesus: Hope that Never Fails.

“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 40:31 NIV

How many times do I feel burdened at the end of the day? Quite too often I must admit!

All life stressors whether it is a fast-paced leadership role, unemployment, toxic stress, a chronic illness, financial hardship or death of a loved one will have a long-lasting impact in our lives. These life-altering challenges are mind-boggling, paralyzing, or debilitating and will alter our minds, spirits, and bodies over time.

Be mindful, these stressful circumstances will blindfold us if we do not take care of ourselves well, and reach out for support or assistance or guidance. We may even lose perspective or vision for the future if we dwell on our circumstances for a prolonged period of time.

Lord, help us reach out to you when we are in distress and give us the courage to talk to someone if we are living in dire moments. Help us take good care of ourselves; good rest at night, healthy meals and help us engage in daily, relaxing activities while we persevere thru the hardships.

Help us take refuge in the shadow of Your wings. We belong in your arms. We want to bathe our burdened souls in Your refreshing stream of living water (Psalm 36:7-9). We want to be renewed, refreshed and empowered to take another step towards our future.

He restores, empowers and strengthens our minds, bodies, and souls every day. Let us hold on to His eternal promises and never let go! (1 Peter 5:10).

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Photo courtesy: Juliane Liebermann @ UnSplash

I heard shocking news recently. One of my colleagues committed suicide. I sat in the living room astonished when I heard she ended her life so violently. I am in disbelief today and heartbroken for her children. “How come she never reached out to any of her colleagues, family or friends for help?” Forgive me, Lord, for judging her.

The holiday tragedy touched the core of my soul. It also altered the lives of many who cared and loved her in our local community.

Lord, I pray if anyone is currently contemplating suicide, please extend grace, love on her, strengthen her mind and heart so she may seek help right now. Encourage her to dial the 24 hour suicide hotline now, 1-800-273-8255. There are also other free resources available for us to tap into nowadays in our Churches and the local communities.

Be alert my friends!

If we drift away from our only source of Hope, Jesus Christ, the enemy will isolate us, lie, condemn and destroy our lives. The enemy will whisper, “there is no other option” and will drag us all the way to defeat.

But the Truth says, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (Jeremiah 29:11)

In Christ, our lives can be transformed so do not be ashamed if you need help, my beloved friend.

My prayer is for us to rise above our circumstances and be empowered by Jesus.

img_1517-2Photo courtesy: Sam Bark @ UnSplash

“How can we soar on wings like eagles?”

Eagles fly higher than any other bird so they can only fly with other Eagles.

As iron sharpens iron,
    so one person sharpens another (Proverbs 27:17 NIV)

Our enemy detests for us to live in a community whether it is in our local church, neighborhood or in social media. If we encourage one another in the midst of hardships, we will be able to weather adversity and be stronger and wiser over the course of time. Let us maintain close fellowship with Jesus and with one another. Together, we will conquer the enemy.

“Yes, Lord, hear our prayer.”

Eagles have excellent eyesight and focus.

“Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer, and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him, he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2)

Jesus Christ is our central point of focus in life. Let us be prayerful, submit our requests and petitions with thanksgiving, and praise Him in the midst of our agony and despair.

Let us be more like Jesus in character and not allow our emotions be kidnapped by the enemy. The enemy wants for  us to be defeated yet there is undeniable power in the Cross. In Christ, we will conquer mental and emotional distress, and soar on wings like eagles.

“Yes, Lord, hear our prayer.”

Eagles rise above storm clouds and they rest on their wings.

“Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” (Romans 5:3-5)

Lord, I pray we have the strength to persevere thru it all. If we are weary, let us hold on to You tightly and never let go of Your grip!  He will give us the rest and the overwhelming peace we need. Since Jesus has already defeated the enemy, we can live victoriously always with great expectations for our future.

God gave us free will so we may choose Life. Let us cherish every moment. Today is a gift from the Lord. Let us wait expectantly for all the possibilities to unfold.

In Jesus name, I bravely pray.

Amen.

Let us sit at our Lord’s feet:

Inscribe and Meditate on:

“The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.” Psalm 28:7 (NIV)

Memory Verse:

“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” (Philippians 4:4-9)

Challenge for the week:

Contact a friend or family or church member this week and schedule a visit.

God’s awesome presence.

“If you bow low in God’s awesome presence, he will eventually exalt you as you leave the timing in his hands.” 1 Peter 5:6 TPT

88ACCEE4-D2FC-44A8-AD7C-7E70DA5A2BFBPhoto credit: Victoria Sereda @ Unsplash

Abba Father,

You are always opening up new frontiers. I  will relax, be humble and allow you to conquer the world on my behalf (Exodus 14:14). You are in charge of all life happenings (Psalm 46:10). 

Forgive me if I attempt to hurry things up. As you know, I am impatient and don’t mind wrestling with you at times! I also know you don’t appreciate when I anticipate or imagine the worst (Matthew 6:25). Forgive me if I have worried way too often in the recent past.

You speak to me in all circumstances. 

When an incoming email calms my heart, you reassure me I’m on track… when a photo exhibits a friendship, your heart is on display and I know I’m loved…when a neighbor assists me, your commitment is manifested and I no longer feel helpless…when strangers are kind, I know you deeply care… when I‘m excited about training, I know you want me to grow and reach my potential… when I hear a ‘warning’ from law enforcement, I know you want me to be on alert, on guard and honor your celestial ways on earth.

Lord, I know you are managing all of my affairs relentlessly and faithfully. I truly appreciate how you are orchestrating all life events on my behalf.

Help me ‘be still’ (Psalm 46:10). Your palpable presence is appreciated and I know you are cheering me along the way. 

You make everything beautiful in your perfect time  (Psalm 18:30). You are an awesome God! I love you with all of my heart, soul, and mind. (Matthew 22:37)

Your beloved and faithful servant.

(sign your name here, and make this prayer personal)

 

A New Season in Life

Holy Prayer #8 New Season

“I wait for the LORD, my whole being waits, and in his word, I put my hope.”
Psalm 130:5 NIV

Lord,

You are always enlightening me with encouraging thoughts and teachings. I treasure the lessons learned in the midst of irritating trials.

It was rough while I waited for a breakthrough I admit. I wrestled and even questioned your plans. You heard my cries of distress and understood my troubled heart. You even shut quite a few doors along the way. Please, forgive me if I was headstrong.


I thank you today for opening up a new season in life!

Show me ‘how to’ expectantly wait, be willing and open-minded during the wait. Help me grow, Lord, one day at a time.

You inspire my soul and strengthen my heart. You are an unwavering God! Your miraculous plan is valued.

Your servant is listening attentively at sunrise and aligning her perspectives in life with your commands.

Don’t give up. Don’t be impatient. Be brave and courageous. Never lose hope (Psalm 27:14).

It’s bittersweet to let go of a season and begin walking towards a different path.
Give me vitality and stamina to waltz into a new journey and finish strong.

I have been secured in your faithfulness always (Psalm 37:3).

In Jesus’ name, I pray,

Your beloved daughter, Adriana.
(write your name and make this prayer personal)

~Spanish Version ~

“Espero al SEÑOR, todo mi ser espera, y en su palabra, espero” Salmo 130: 5 NVI

Señor, Siempre me estás iluminando con pensamientos y enseñanzas alentadoras. Atesoro las lecciones aprendidas en medio de pruebas irritantes.

Fue duro mientras esperaba un avance lo admito. Luché e incluso cuestioné tus planes. Escuchaste mis gritos de angustia y entendiste mi corazón atribulado. Incluso cerraste bastantes puertas en el camino. Por favor, perdóname si fui testaruda.
¡Te agradezco esta noche por abrir una nueva temporada en la vida!

Muéstrame cómo esperar con expectación, estar dispuesta y de mente abierta durante la espera. Ayúdame a crecer, Señor, un día a la vez.

Tú inspiras mi alma y fortaleces mi corazón. ¡Eres un Dios inquebrantable! Tu plan milagroso es valorado.

Tu sirvienta escucha atentamente este amanecer y alinea sus perspectivas en la vida con tus órdenes.

No te rindas. No seas inpaciente. Sé valiente. Nunca pierdas la esperanza (Salmo 27:14).

Es agridulce abandonar una temporada y comenzar a caminar hacia un camino diferente.

Dame vitalidad y resistencia para bailar el vals en un nuevo viaje y terminar fuerte.
Estoy siempre seguro de tu fidelidad (Salmo 37: 3).

En el nombre de Jesús, rezo tu amada hija, Adriana.
(escribe tu nombre y haz que esta oración sea personal)

#KeynotesinHispresencePrayer

Photo Courtesy: Michael Baron.

Shut the door and never look back!

 God delivers us from tenebrous wilderness.

He never leaves us nor forsakes us when chained to self-defeating patterns or

strolling down the broad path of today’s world!

He is FAITHFUL!

“He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,

to proclaim liberty to the captives,

and the opening of the prison

to those who are bound…” Isaiah 61:1

The Lord heals the brokenhearted, frees us from captivity and guides us towards an abundant life filled with Hope and eternal promises!

“It is a relief to be in His presence each moment!”

A path only a few may find.

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He is FAITHFUL!

Periodically, the Lord opens up another ancient door from a prison cell so we may shut it permanently and never glanced back at it ever again.

 “Idolatry”

Excessive internet shopping and social media updates, busyness, seeking approval from others are few barriers we may encounter when building our relationship with the Lord.

“No more bondage!”

“Let me walk out of this prison cell and shut the door at once!!” She whispered to herself in disgust one late afternoon.

She surrendered her desires for ‘more stuff’, approval, and social media involvement,

“Lord, help us stay focused. You are our only Hope to overcome strongholds in life. In Christ, anything is possible so give us the inner strength, focus, and determination we need for just today. In Jesus’ name, we pray.  Amen.”

Sisterhood

 

‘Misunderstanding’ is a forceful presence among friends dividing hearts and perhaps abolishing today’s divine plans.

‘Open communication’ promotes  fresh insights, diffuses anger and grants clarity to challenging occurrences.

 ‘Transparency’ is the cornerstone of genuine, mature friendships.

‘Forgiveness and Grace’ are vital ingredients for  friendships to flourish over time and weather the rugged times.

Even if our human tendencies is to distance ourselves when angry, it’s pivotal to be intentional about the reconciliation of our hearts.

All of us possess strengths as well as quite a few character flaws.

“I am happily imperfect. In God’s eyes, I was wonderfully and fearfully made!”

We all think and communicate differently.

When steered into troubled or heated discussions, let us be mindful of our differences and let us honor these inequalities with great respect and in love.

 Cindy and I embrace each other’s strengths,  and sense of humor at all times!

‘How many times should I forgive?’

“Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭18:22‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Christ wants us to forgive others not once but as often as necessary.

If Reconciliation is possible then pursue it today!

Our days are numbered and tomorrow is not secured.

God knows our hearts and He will work everything out in His perfect time!

“I’m Greatly Disappointed, You are Forgiven”

Lester and I immediately connected when we first met at Wood Grove.

The Holy Spirit brought us together on a sunny day!

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Lester has a leadership role at an H.R. department and executes life-altering decisions daily.

We shared about our recent struggles in leadership.

“How do you handle disappointment?” I solicited.

His candid response was “I am greatly disappointed but I immediately forgive”.

The core of my soul was forever touched. A fresh perspective was unexpectedly heard as I strolled down the streets of the neighborhood with my hubby.

God had answered a prayer in His perfect time.

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How many times family or friends disagree with our views? How many times do co-workers ignore our suggestions? How many times do others reject our participation in a decision?

Way too often!

We may feel betrayed or disheartened along the way.

What matters the most is how we process these emotions? Do we hold onto them for a prolonged period of time? Do we let them go?

“Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it”  Prov 4:23 N.I.V

Our tender hearts need to be protected from negative emotions. The Lord wants us to forgive immediately. Not once or twice but ‘every’ time someone disappoints us.

Forgiveness nourishes the heart, saves our souls and it is the ultimate antidote for bitterness. Taking every negative emotion ‘captive’ to Christ, confessing, repenting and praying over our sinful hearts are key ingredients to healing and spiritual growth.

“Lord, help me release any angry thoughts I may have right now, cleanse my heart from ‘un’forgiveness, protect my heart from resentments and alert me of bitterness. Remind me of taking every thought captive when feeling angry so I may surrender upsetting thoughts and related emotions right there and then. Help me forgive those who are offensive and are evil in their ways.  In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen”

Joy in Music

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“Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.”
‭‭Psalm‬ ‭100:2‬ ‭NIV‬‬

 

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Jesus Understands

The phone rang as soon I sat down in the living room’s cozy, leather couch. I glanced at my watch and had a random thought, “perfect timing! We can catch up…”

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Her voice trembled as she called out my name in despair and fear.

I knew then, there was a family emergency.

My heart skipped a beat or two when I demanded the ‘bad news’ without much delay.

“He attempted suicide”, she declared.

After I gathered all relevant details and suggested a course of action, I was still in state of shock.

I prayed on behalf of the family and was reminded of His faithfulness. God would never leaves us nor forsake us. The Lord gives us the strength, comfort and peace in the midst of chaos and state of disbelief.

I silently prayed.

‘God, give him a glimpse of hope for the future. He has lost his way and is quite desperate in life; he does not even know you or any of your promises. Please, capture his tender heart now, embrace him with your loving arms, whisper in his ear ‘how much’ you love him, forgive him and lead him to salvation. You are a God of ‘many’ chances and your patience never runs out so rescue him from darkness this evening and show him a new way of life. In Jesus name I pray, Amen’

Jesus hears our prayers. He certainly understands our state of mind and heart.

How many of us have the strength to manage unexpected, disheartening news, tragedies or even sudden death of a loved one?

Personally, I am run-down at times.

There is no life apart from Jesus.

He is my living water, refuge and comforter in the storms of life.

Jesus is LIFE indeed.

“which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.”
‭‭Ephesians‬ ‭1:23‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Jesus understands all of our unfortunate circumstances and He is the One who can helps us get thru it one day at a time.

Apart from Jesus, there is no life!

There is time for Everything

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In the book of Ecclesiastes, the truth reminds us of…

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens: A time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot…a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance…”

It’s time to mourn indeed.