Your Life is Shielded by the Hand of God

You have also given me the shield of Your salvation, and Your right hand has held me up; Your gentleness and condescension have made me great. Psalms 18:35 (Amplified)

Have you ever felt alone and nervous as you were about to confront a high-stress situation?  Did you overwhelmed and wonder how you could possibly get through it without anyone else helping?  The good news is, God is always with us regardless of the situation.

How comforting it is to know that our life is shielded by the hand of God. He literally holds us in his hand and nothing can touch us that He does not allow. It is in those times when there is a great trial in your life that you really understand His full protection. It is in the trials that you are aware of His strong presence as a shield. He is also working things out for your own good. George Mueller once wrote, “In a thousand trials, it is not just five hundred of them that work ‘for the good’ of the believer, but nine hundred and ninety-nine plus one.”

When I was in the middle of the greatest trial of my life, the Lord spoke to me to read Rev. 21:5. I turned quickly to the verse that assured me of his intentions in that situation. “Behold, I make all things new . . .” Notice that it doesn’t say “some” things. The verse says “all things.”

At the time, I was looking at my son laying in the hospital in a coma. His life was totally in the hands of God. The doctors did not give us very much hope of him even making it through the night, but God said that not only would he make it through the night, but that He was making all things new. What a contrast and a faith builder!

Today, I am watching my son run three miles down the beach as God is still working in his life, and making “all things new.” So in your present situation, you can trust that He will shield you from evil and work all things together for your good.

Removing Every Hindrance

Therefore also now, says the Lord, turn and keep on coming to Me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning [until every hindrance is removed and the broken fellowship is restored]”   Joel 2:12 (AMP)

If you have ever traveled in a car with kids, you know that you are going to be questioned.  Every time I have taken my family on a drive, my children would inevitably ask at the half way point during our trip, “Are we there yet?” No matter how far you are traveling, all children seem to be programmed to ask this question.

On those long trips to Florida when the kids were getting impatient, tired, and weary of traveling, I was tempted to stop about half way, give up and turn around. But all along the way, we would call Nana and Papa just to hear them say, “Keep coming, we have cookies baked and the fishing poles are ready.” That was all we needed.  Everyone was energized with a burst of energy.  The children settled back down so we could keep traveling.

In your journey through life, the Lord knows when you are getting weary from so many obstacles and hindrances as you get closer to your destination. Call upon the Lord, “Are we there yet?” He may say, “Not yet, just keep on coming.”

God has eternal blessings that are far beyond what we can comprehend and they are right around the next curve. He has blessings in store that are far beyond the fresh baked cookies that we looked forward to at grandma’s house. His blessings are beyond what our mind can fathom but we must stay on the path that leads us there.

I learned a valuable lesson years ago as I traveled with the children.  When I got upset with them, I would be tempted to stop and forget about the vacation.  I could not give in to their tiredness.  I had to resist getting upset when they were tired of traveling. I had to rise above my own tiredness and do what was right.  I had to focus on keeping my heart right even if their hearts were not.  Keeping your heart right towards others will keep you on track, as you travel towards your eternal home.  Don’t stop half way on your journey by getting offended at someone.  Keep on track, keep on the highway!

Listen to what the Lord says, “Therefore also now, says the Lord, turn and keep on coming to Me with all your heart, with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning [until every hindrance is removed and every broken fellowship is restored. ” Joel 2:12

Does Anyone Really Care?

“And let us consider and give attentive, continuous care to watching over one another.”  Hebrews 10:24

building each other upDo you ever wonder if anyone really cares?  If  you have accepted Christ as your savior, not only do you have a new life and purpose, but you also have a new family.  In this family, the Bible teaches us that we should care for each other and encourage one another.  The Amplified bible says to give attentive continuous care to watching over one another.

With the online social movement many people have become somewhat reclusive from face-to-face contact.  It seems that the new lifestyle and societal trend is to connect with relationships virtually – without physical interactions.  Unfortunately, in too many cases it has become to easy of an escape from recognizing and responding to the needs of others.  It’s difficult to wash feet and serve needs from a virtual connection.

Restoring Families

Social sites certainly have a place in our society and can help us find new ways of loving, encouraging, and sharing. We should carefully evaluate how we are building each other up in the Faith.  God has called us to Love unconditionally and to care for each other by serving in the nurturing of Faith.   Let us diligently and attentively consider each other’s trials, difficulties, and weaknesses; feel for each other, and excite each other to an increase of love to God and man; and as proof of it, to be fruitful in good works.

We are to be concerned about other Christians because they are our brothers and sisters. When you are in a family and care about others, you watch out for them and it sets you free from a lonely, secluded, and self centered life. Verse 24 says to give continuous (nonstop, constant) care to watching out for one another.

In your natural family, what was your response when you were asked by your dad or mom to look after your younger brother or sister? Whatever thoughts you have today that are hurtful and childish, just simply put them away (1 Corinthians 13:11) because these thoughts  and feelings are blocks that are keeping you from being obedient to the Word of God.

I remember a song we sang at youth camp around the camp fire many years ago. The words to that song had such an impact on my life. The song went something like this:  Do you really care -do you know how to share with people everywhere – do you really care?

What is holding you back? Identify your feelings and ask the Lord to fill you will His Love anew that you may be able to give it to others.

How to Find Perfect Love

“Perfect love casts out all fear, for fear hath torment.  And he that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.” 1 John 4:18

perfect loveWe are created in the image of God and designed to have intimate relationships bound in love.   I guess it would be safe to say we are created with a “need” to love, and be loved.

As an infant, the first time we are touched and held by our parent, our initial experience with physical love is activated.  But, only for a moment.  At the stage of infancy, the ability to hold-on to love has not been fully established.  The ability to hold-on when someone says they are holding you is what we label as trust.  Just as a baby will continue to cry until he/she learns how to trust, we as adults will continue to whine and complain until we mature and learn to trust God completely.

We first learn to trust through loving, nurturing parents.  Since they are our first source of nurturing, we begin to trust them as a source of comfort and “love”.  We trust them to return, even when they are away for a day.  Once trust has been established, they can be away for longer periods of time and we still feel secure and loved.  Their continual flow of love keeps our hearts soft and open to trusting.

Unfortunately, some people never fully experience that sense of trust.  A lack of love due to neglect, rejection or abuse is painful and causes emotions to shut down and their heart begins to harden.  Each time pain is felt, a stone is formed in the heart.    After a period of time, the stones form a wall around the heart for protection against further pain.  A person with a stony heart has a difficult time receiving love from God or others – and also have a tough time offering love to others.  Relationships are difficult, and unfortunately, the very thing that is needed to heal the pain is blocked out.

We all have areas of our heart that are stony due to the fact that we all have been hurt when love did not flow properly from early relationships in our lives.   Sometimes parents are unable to provide the relationship and unconditional love that helps build a soft, trusting heart.  Perhaps their own struggles caused them to have a hardened heart – and unable to love properly.

The fact is, as adults we need to understand that our example of love is Jesus Christ.  Through him our hearts can be softened in order to love others.  Regardless of hurts or lack of trust from early relationships, by opening our hearts to Christ we can love through hurts and disappointments.

Ask God for His perfect love to fill you; for God is the only one who has perfect love, (I John 4:18).

Imperfect love hurts; perfect love heals.

Unconditional Love: Finding the Real Thing

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5) It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6) Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7) It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”  1Corinthians 13:4-7

JGods love manifestAs you experience God’s love, you will know you have found the real thing.  He loves you with an everlasting, continual, and unconditional love.  His love is consistent and not based on your behavior, good or bad.  He loves bad boys as much as good boys.  His love is so strong that he doesn’t get offended at us when we make a mistake.

God continues to show you His loving kindness is still there for you to receive.  As you receive God’s love, your love for others is bound to change. It will be a noticeable change because you will have found the freedom that comes when you give and receive unconditional love. Relationships that are built on the foundation of unconditional love are real and lasting.

If you have a desire for the real thing, you must begin to realize what has been real and what has been superficial.  People who have not experienced the love of God only know how to love others on a shallow, superficial level.  Their love is superficial because it is self-serving.  Superficial love may look real at the first glance, but there are certain things that make it superficial.

Superficial love is conditional; and, it will always have a requirement attached to it.  The motive of the heart is the desire to receive something. The motive of the heart therefore is not pure.  To the degree that we have experienced the love of God is the degree that we can love others with genuine love.   Once you know God’s love by experiencing it, you don’t love others to get love; you have the real thing.  God’s love is the real thing; it is genuine. His love is totally satisfying and ends all our searching.

Let Your Love Be the Real Thing